Doug Allan may not be a name familiar to many of you but if you’re a fan of wildlife blockbusters like Blue Planet and Planet Earth, then you will have seen some of his incredible footage in both shows amongst many others. For the next two months, the BAFTA-winning cameraman and photographer is taking to the road bringing his stories to audiences across the UK.
Like his work, the show, which ran for two hours, taps into every emotion. One moment you’re watching heart-stopping moments from Antarctica or Mount Everest, the next you’re looking at beautiful photos of penguin colonies or incredible footage of polar bears with their cubs. Fast forward a few minutes and Allan is documenting the brutal side as nature with gritty footage of whales hunting and attacking prey or atrocious weather conditions that explorers face for months on end.
For the best part of two hours (not including a short audience Q&A), Allan talks us through the challenges, his favourite moments and some of the more comical experiences he’s had throughout an incredible career which began in the 1990s and has taken him across this stunning planet while working alongside legends like David Attenborough. The latter moments of each half are given over to the subject of climate change. This is something Allan is extremely passionate about but, sadly, it turns this otherwise incredible talk, into something that teeters on becoming a political lecture. Of course, given the nature of his work, it was understandably hard not to touch on the subject, but I can’t have been the only one wanting to hear more about the experiences that most of us will never go through.
Wrapping up, Allan states that he hopes that the talk has been both enjoyable and provocative (something clearly aimed at the latter part of the show) and on that score, there can’t have been anyone who walked away from this evening disappointed. From the beautiful and breath taking to the brutal and provocative, whether you’re a wildlife enthusiast, a photographer, a documentary maker or just fascinated by his work, Allan’s stories make this an evening you don’t want to end.