Renowned nature photographer Tom Ulrich has been published in countless national and international magazines such as National Geographic, Sports Illustrated and Outdoor Life. He’s also published seven books that feature his work.
Last weekend he hosted a photography presentation and workshop on campus.
“I think it went really well,” Ulrich said about his photography presentation and workshop on campus. “I know the first time I come into an area it’s a little harder to pull in people, but [it was a] real receptive group. The venue was fantastic. [On] the screen the photos looked fantastic.”
Ulrich was introduced to photography in 1975 while he was teaching high school biology. His brother, a member of the Navy stationed in Japan, sent him a catalog of cameras and told him to pick one he liked.
“I just circled one and sent it back to him, and a Pentax [camera] showed up,” Ulrich said. “I started playing with it. I shot some woodpeckers and deer and thought that was really a lot of fun.”
Ulrich said he loves taking photos in remote areas, especially in other countries.
“Once I land in somewhere like Buenos Aires, Santiago, Nairobi or wherever, I get out of the city as quickly as possible,” Ulrich said. “I want to get out in the bush where it’s just a lot simpler and I kind of feel a lot more comfortable.”
Ulrich has more than 800,000 photos in his portfolio to pull from when filling an order for a customer.
Of all his photos, the one that stands out the most is one of two polar bears play fighting in in Manitoba, Canada, near the Hudson Bay. It was taken in 1985.
“That’s the one that won me International Wildlife Photographer of the Year and a trip to London,” Ulrich said. “It actually kind of threw me into the international market. I started selling photos all over the world after that.”
Through his years as a photographer, Ulrich has had an opportunity to take pictures of animals most people never see, including the most rare ducks, parrots and penguins in the world.
“I’m very fortunate because I get to see an awful lot of things most people can’t,” he said. “I get into closed areas to photograph rare and endangered animals that are closed to the public. So In that way I feel very fortunate.”