big life foundation, started by photographer nick brandt in 2010, is the culmination of a vision which began for him in 1995 when he was asked by michael jackson to direct the video for “earth song.” “[jackson] really cared hugely about the environment so we naturally bonded over that,” he said.
the shoot would take him to kenya and tanzania. “i completely fell in love with the place. i became a photographer because of africa,” he said. “i never found a way to express my feelings about the environment through film [but] after seeing everything there in africa, i suddenly realized there was a way to express my feeling through photographs.”
"even though i am a natural pessimist, i hadn’t anticipated that the rate of destruction would escalate so fast,” he said. “i thought it was very self aggrandizing to start my own foundation, but what i had was a pool of incredibly wealthy collectors who buy my photographs. with the initial investment of half a million dollars from one art collector, big life was born.”
recognizing that sustainable conservation can only be achieved through a community based collaborative approach, big life uses innovative conservation strategies to reduce the loss of wildlife to poaching, defeat the ivory trade, mitigate human-wildlife conflict, protect the great predators, and manage scarce and fragile natural resources.