Having served as the director of communications for an ecotourism outfit in South Africa, and as a freelance writer-photographer, Ian immigrated to the United States, landing with his wife, two suitcases, and a baby boy just two months before 9/11. With the collapsing trade towers, fell the economy. Enrollment at universities dropped by 40 percent the following year — just one example of the disastrous socio-economic impact.
Ian found work as a gofer on a construction team, but it was only while loading four tons of concrete onto a truck by hand that he realized the meaning of this North American colloquialism. Working shovel-by-shovel with Mexican immigrants, promotion came quickly — he was soon appointed as a security guard, which was followed by limo driver. All the while he was writing, photographing, developing a stock photography business and pitching to magazines.
Ian went on to accrue two years as a staff photojournalist, four years in the field of medical science communications, seven years as an environmental communications practitioner, along with an additional three years as a freelance journalist. Passionate about the science of environmental journalism and communication, and having a knack for storytelling, he has mastered the use of multimedia — including writing, photography, and videography to both demystify and report on environmental science. Using a convergent style he excels at teasing out a compelling narrative that connects on social and emotional levels with an audience.
With 20 years experience in the field, he is an award-winning photographer and designer, and has served as editor, producer and director for environmental and medical science publications. He has blogged about citizen science for Discover Magazine, PLoS, and Scistarter, and about biodiversity for National Geographic Voices.
Ian has an AA in Photography and Graphic Design, a BA ED with majors in Geography and Human Movement Science, and an MS in Environmental Studies with specialization in Environmental Communications. He enjoys intimate knowledge and experience of many of the subjects he photographs and writes about - not the least of which is migrant labor - and gets along easily with the common man. Ian has logged more than 400 days leading groups on educational adventures down African rivers and along mountain trails. He is a member of D.C. Science Writers, the International Association for Environmental Communications, the Society for Professional Journalists, the International Ecolinguistics Association and is proud of the fact that he is a journeyman.