Born in Rotterdam, the Netherlands, Frans Lanting earned a master’s degree in economics then moved to the United States to study environmental planning. Soon after, he began photographing the natural world.
Lanting’s work is commissioned frequently by National Geographic, where he served as a Photographer-in-Residence. His assignments have ranged from the fabled bonobos of the Congo to a circumnavigation by sailboat of South Georgia Island.
Lanting did pioneering work in Madagascar and in Botswana’s Okavango Delta, and his photo essays about Borneo’s rainforest, emperor penguins in Antarctica, and the plight of puffins in the North Atlantic, have been featured in publications around the world.
Lanting’s work for the Geographic also includes profiles of ecological hot spots, a essays on American landscapes, stories about Hawaii’s volcanoes and Zambia’s wildlife.
In 2006 he launched The LIFE Project, an interpretation of the history of life on Earth, as a book, exhibition, website and a multimedia performance. Lanting has received many awards for his work, including top honors from World Press Photo, Photographer of the Year from BBC Wildlife, and the Sierra Club’s Ansel Adams Award.
He serves on the National Council of the World Wildlife Fund and on the Chairman’s Council of Conservation International. Lanting contributes to Outdoor Photographer.
He lives in Santa Cruz, California, with his wife, Chris Eckstrom.