How Animals come into the World
Cooler than a biology textbook could ever be: Growing – How Animals Come into the World, unique photography of baby animals’ development
How do budgie chicks, baby turtles, tadpoles, and puppies grow up? Dutch photographer Marlonneke Willemsen accompanied selected animal species during the first weeks of their lives, capturing their key developmental steps on camera. A fascinating document of the natural world, putting those biology textbooks to shame!
How does a tadpole become a frog? When does a cat open its eyes for the first time? Seven years ago, Dutch photographer Marlonneke Willemsen started taking pictures of newborn puppies, asking herself the question “If I were to photograph a litter of puppies every day for seven weeks, could I capture their development?” From this first series, an extensive new project began, capturing different newborn animals in the first precious phase of their lives.
Against a white background, Willemsen captures each animal’s key developmental steps, photographing them at regular intervals and in the same composition. All pictures were taken where the animals lived, and with minimum stress to the youngsters and their mothers. Through birds, mammals, insects, reptiles and fish, empathetic animal portraits from six different animal classes emerge, from house cats and canaries to poison dart frogs and ramshorn snails.
With a clear organization and contemporary book design, Willemsen’s brilliant close-up photography, Growing is a visual and informative pleasure, instilled with a deep respect for the intricacy and diversity of the natural world. Instructive texts provide insights into the habitat and specific behaviors of each animal.