My name is Matthew Cicanese and I’m a National Geographic Explorer & professional wildlife/nature photographer. My goal is to inspire, illuminate, and educate people about the beauty & biodiversity of our planet. I work with a variety of non-profits, commercial entities, & educational institutions around the world. However, one of the areas I’d like to start offering more of my time and expertise in is private photography expeditions. I lead a variety of educational programs with different entities, and student groups have ranged from 6-24 people. Examples include Destination Workshops with Canon USA, weekend workshops with St. Pete’s Morean Arts Center, and a 2-day intensive photography workshop in Sri Lanka’s capital city (Colombo).
When I was just about a year old I contracted penicillin-resistant meningitis and it nearly killed me after fighting it for over a month in the hospital. I survived with sensory disabilities in my sight & hearing (monocular vision / deaf in right ear). When I discovered my passion for photography at 14 years old, I realized that my camera was a way for me to break the glass ceiling that my disabilities presented, and use those hurdles as stepping stones to my goals as an artist. My camera was the key that allowed me to connect with the world on a deeper level, and inspired me to learn more about the natural world – as a result, I studied environmental science for my bachelors and learned a plethora of ecological knowledge. Following my bachelor’s degree, I went on to Duke to earn a terminal masters degree (MFA) in Experimental & Documentary Arts. My MFA taught me to explore and examine the innate connections with nature that humans hold, and the visceral reactions that result from experiencing the wonder of our planet.
I specialize in macro photography, landscapes, documentary street photography, and environmental portraits.