Sunrise performance

Tim Laman's Image

Birds-of-paradise spend most of their time in dense rainforest so images usually have to be taken with telephoto lenses.

But Tim wanted to show the birds performing against the backdrop of the rainforest, which meant a treetop vista and a wide angle lens. On Wokam Island, the Aru Islands, Indonesia, Tim found both subject and ideal location. During one of its dawn displays, the male had paused, tail and wings fluffed and fanned, when the mist began rising in the distance. The result represents Tim’s most treasured image from his 10-year project.

Behind the lens

Tim Laman

Tim Laman


Tim is a field biologist and wildlife photojournalist with a reputation for returning from the wild with shots of nearly impossible subjects. His pioneering research in the rainforest canopy led to a PhD from Harvard University and the first of many articles for National Geographic magazine. His work has garnered numerous awards, including many in Wildlife Photographer of the Year.

Image details

  • Canon EOS 7D
  • 10–22mm f3.5–4.5 lens
  • 1/125 sec at f8  •   ISO 400
  • Wokam Island, Indonesia
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