Megan McCubbin

Megan McCubbin.jpg

I graduated in Zoology from the University of Liverpool and since have been working as a wildlife researcher and presenter for Lush. The natural world has always been my primary fascination but since picking up a camera at age 10, I began to understand how photography could be used as a powerful tool for conservation. I have been incredibly fortunate to travel around the world taking images, and the exquisite beauty of birds is something I am forever trying to capture. Photography does not lie within the boundaries of language, so I strive to communicate and tell a story through every photo I take. Personally, it’s about raising awareness about the plight of species and engaging new audiences. Starting out as a young wildlife photographer myself, I now reflect on my experiences knowing that it enabled me to learn and look at my surrounding environment differently. It really shaped the person and photographer that I am today.

Megan McCubbin.

Below we feature some of Megan’s photography. 2019 was the year of the penguin for Bird Photographer of the Year, with more images of this group of birds received than ever before. Therefore, it is rather fitting that Megan has chosen to feature penguins as her showcase gallery.

Weathering the Storm  A bold Chinstrap Penguin stands resolute against a battling snow storm approaching from the rough sea. Having been out fishing, this charismatic penguin had a long climb back to the security of its colony, which was hidden behind the mountain tops. I have a lot of admiration for these small birds as they prevail in seemingly inhospitable environments.

Weathering the Storm A bold Chinstrap Penguin stands resolute against a battling snow storm approaching from the rough sea. Having been out fishing, this charismatic penguin had a long climb back to the security of its colony, which was hidden behind the mountain tops. I have a lot of admiration for these small birds as they prevail in seemingly inhospitable environments.

Adélies Dance  Watching penguins interact with one another and their environment is fascinating. These two adopted this pose just seconds before the standing individual tried to steal a valuable nesting stone from the other. I like looking for simplicity in images, and sometimes by over-exposing a shot it can strip back all the unnecessary detail and focus attention on a specific element in the image, or highlight an interaction.

Adélies Dance Watching penguins interact with one another and their environment is fascinating. These two adopted this pose just seconds before the standing individual tried to steal a valuable nesting stone from the other. I like looking for simplicity in images, and sometimes by over-exposing a shot it can strip back all the unnecessary detail and focus attention on a specific element in the image, or highlight an interaction.

Mountain vs Adélie  Adélies are the smallest and most widespread species of penguin in Antarctica. I wanted to take an image showcasing the contrast between these small birds and their vast environment. In a world that is getting smaller for wildlife by the second, I find it comforting to remind myself that we all play a small but critical role how ecosystems much bigger than ourselves function. We can all make a difference.

Mountain vs Adélie Adélies are the smallest and most widespread species of penguin in Antarctica. I wanted to take an image showcasing the contrast between these small birds and their vast environment. In a world that is getting smaller for wildlife by the second, I find it comforting to remind myself that we all play a small but critical role how ecosystems much bigger than ourselves function. We can all make a difference.

Strike a Pose  Gentoo Penguins are known for tilting their heads back and emitting a trumpeting sound to attract and communicate with mates. This male spent five minutes ‘performing’ to a nearby group. I lay just behind a snow bank to frame him against the pure white-out background as he took a break. I really like taking portraits of species, especially those in decline: the images can then become a powerful tool for conservation.

Strike a Pose Gentoo Penguins are known for tilting their heads back and emitting a trumpeting sound to attract and communicate with mates. This male spent five minutes ‘performing’ to a nearby group. I lay just behind a snow bank to frame him against the pure white-out background as he took a break. I really like taking portraits of species, especially those in decline: the images can then become a powerful tool for conservation.

Dive  The image shows a Chinstap Penguin diving into the dark, aggressive waves without hesitation. Well, with maybe just a little hesitation...

Dive The image shows a Chinstap Penguin diving into the dark, aggressive waves without hesitation. Well, with maybe just a little hesitation...

Squark  As penguins stretch out their necks to vocalise, you can really see how streamlined their bodies are. As you can probably imagine it was a pleasure rather than a challenge to spend time watching this Adélie resting and vocalising on an iceberg.

Squark As penguins stretch out their necks to vocalise, you can really see how streamlined their bodies are. As you can probably imagine it was a pleasure rather than a challenge to spend time watching this Adélie resting and vocalising on an iceberg.

Rob Read