David Bittner

David Bittner

The bear in front of the lens is at least three times larger than the photographer himself, it’s leaning towards the camera bearing two long sharp teeth – pictures like these are right along David Bittners line of work. His images are real and shot in the wild, with neither a safety net nor a double bottom.

Coincidentally, the doctor of Biology lives in Bern, the city with a bear as ist coat of arms. Whatever could be more obvious than to travel as much as possible to Alaska to study the greatest of this species up front?

Through endless patience and adapted behaviour on Andreas’ part, the animals slowly accept his presence and even approach him within a few metres. To reach this stage, Andreas spends weeks and months at a time on Kodiak Island and along the Katmai coastline. After having been dropped off by a float plane, he paddles around in a sea kayak and reaches the most remote of all places. He is so well acquainted with some of the bears around there that he has even given them names. Of course, since the bears have slowly accustomed to the strange two legged being with a lens as an eye, they also lose their natural fear.

Up until now, with the exception of a big mother bear attacking him, things have gone quite smoothly.