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Justin Gibson

At the age of eight, Justin saw his first wild bear. Decades later, his infatuation with all things ursine continues to grow. While attending the University of Alaska Anchorage, Justin spent his summers as a ranger in Katmai National Park. He has since extended his passion to wildlife and endangered cultures around the globe. A self-described "eco-nerd," Justin is fascinated with wild animals, botany, microbiology, birding, glaciology and scuba diving.

Justin has been an expedition leader and photography instructor in more than 20 countries during the past 20 years. In his decade-plus as a Nat Hab guide, he's led photo expeditions to the furthest reaches of Canada, Alaska, China, Ethiopia, Yellowstone, Finland, Russia, Norway and Borneo.

Justin's love for nature photography stems from his childhood, where he would spend weeks at a time in Yellowstone with his family. He began his professional photography career guiding some of the biggest names in wildlife photography among the wild brown bears of Alaska's Katmai National Park. While these photography legends would lead on-location workshops, Justin would keep them safe and ensure they followed ethical bear viewing guidelines. He learned valuable artistic and technical secrets from these masters of their craft, then began using those lessons develop his own photographic voice.

Using a combination of in-camera techniques, intimate subject knowledge and advanced multi-layer post-processing, Justin has developed a unique style that he hopes brings the viewer a deep understanding of the subject, culture or wildlife that he is photographing. He is passionate about teaching photography in the field, since he believes that cameras are a remarkable tool to teach conservation, sustainability and cross-cultural connection.

Justin has been featured in World Wildlife Fund magazine, Asia Geographic, Alaska magazine, AFAR magazine, multiple stock photo agencies and in Nat Hab’s marketing materials. View Justin's latest photography portfolio additions on Instagram at @cultureandwildlife.

When he’s not guiding, Justin likes to travel and photograph the world’s beautiful places and cultures, including trips to Jordan, Taiwan, Cambodia, Egypt, Thailand, Laos and Malaysia.

Enjoy this selection of Justin's photography:

What’s in Justin's Camera Bag:

Camera Bags
Pelican Air Case 1535
Mindshift Gear Backlight 26L

Camera Equipment
Olympus OMD-EM1 III (2)
Olympus M.Zuiko Digital MC-14 1.4x Teleconverter
Olympus M.Zuiko ED 12-40mm f/2.8 PRO
Olympus M.Zuiko ED 7-14mm f/2.8 PRO
Olympus M.Zuiko ED 12-100mm f/4 IS PRO
Olympus M.Zuiko ED 40-150mm f/2.8 IS PRO
Olympus M.Zuiko ED 300mm f/4 IS PRO
Olympus FL-900R Electronic Flash
Manifrotto Tripod
Gitzo Tripod
GoPro HERO9
DJI Mavic Mini II
iPhone 12 Plus

Filters
Singh-Ray Neutral Density Filters (2-5 stops, 10 stops, 20 stops)
Singh-Ray Graduated Neutral Density Filters (2 Stops, 3 Stops)
Singh-Ray Polarizing Filter

Post Processing Software Expertise
Adobe Lightroom
Adobe Photoshop (multilayering techniques) 
Wacom Ituos Pro Tablet
Capture One

Upcoming Adventures with Justin:

Florida Nature Safari
Northern Lights and Arctic Cultures

Northern Lights Photography Tour
The Wild Side of China: A Nature Odyssey
The Wild Side of China Photo Adventure
Ultimate Alaska Wildlife Safari
Ultimate Alaska Wildlife Photo Safari
The Great Alaskan Grizzly Encounter
The Great Alaskan Grizzly Photo Adventure
Grizzlies of Katmai: A Photo Pro Expedition
Bears of Brooks Falls: A Photo Pro Expedition
Polar Bears of Churchill
Aurora Quest: To the European Arctic by Luxury Train

Praise from Nat Hab Travelers:

R. Falkenberry
"There are no words to tell you how wonderful Justin was. He is kind, helpful, patient, smart, compassionate, energetic, always on time, protective of our safety, funny and serious about conservation. I think everybody on the trip fell in love with him. Don't let him get away from Nat Hab. He is a priceless jewel and an asset to your company. I felt like crying when we had to say goodbye to him. He made the trip extra special."

E. Hente
"Where do we begin? Justin was an outstanding, excellent, helpful, knowledgeable, professional and caring guide. His personality was terrific. Although we were not on a 'photo tour,' as a professional photographer, Justin was extremely willing to share his knowledge and help those of us who were not as knowledgeable at any time!"

E. Acosta
"I could not have asked for a better guide. His subject knowledge was excellent and his courtesy and helpfulness were better than anything I have ever experienced. He was very engaging with travelers and even offered tips on photography—he was above and beyond all around. He genuinely wanted everyone to enjoy themselves and experience a once-in-a-lifetime trip."

C. Brose
"Justin is INCREDIBLE! Not only does he have a vast knowledge of the bears, but if he didn't have the answer to a question, he would get it. He was very generous in helping make everyone's stay a memorable one. He is an incredible photographer and was very kind in helping others and sharing ideas on how to get the perfect shot. I was very impressed by his interactions and people skills. He is a polished and personable young man. We would LOVE to go with him again!"

E. Ownbey
"Justin was an AMAZING Expedition Leader. He is very professional, has a great attitude and is a true expert regarding polar bears! He took an amazing trip and made it a 'Once-in-a-Lifetime' experience!!! I don't know how anyone could do a better job at representing your company."

J. Pilarcyk
"Justin is a very caring young man. He was eager to please us and very genuine! I think our entire group fell in love with him and wanted to take him home."

E. Piwetz
"Justin is an exceptional Expedition Leader and functions at the highest level of competence at all times. He is continually vigilant, assessing the situation and responding accordingly in a consistent manner. His photography expertise is superior. His concerns for our safety were always paramount. There was no issue or problem that he could not solve. He is a delightful individual and has the perfect personality and temperament for his position. We have had guides throughout the world and he ranks with only the best! Our expectations are always high so to please us is no small feat. Justin made the trip perfect!"
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Together, Natural Habitat Adventures and World Wildlife Fund have teamed up to arrange nearly a hundred nature travel experiences around the globe, while helping to protect the spectacular places we visit and their wild inhabitants.

Natural Habitat Adventures 2022 Catalog

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