Married couple Steve Pearce (Photographer) and Dr Jen Sanger (PhD Ecologist) photograph striking ‘Tree Portraits’ on their quest to save the area they love — Tasmania’s Grove of Giants — from logging in 2023. Yet they didn’t originally set out to become activists.
Directed by Joseph Nizeti
Produced by Rob Innes
Jen and Steve’s story begins with them conquering their fear of heights and learning to climb trees together for Jen’s PhD thesis in Central America. Humbled and amazed by the world of the canopy, this is an experience which cements their relationship and shifts their perspective forever.
Returning home to Tasmania, they become reluctant campaigners when they discover the Grove of Giants — a valley containing some of the most critical Giant Trees in the world — is scheduled to be logged. Giant Trees are the largest living organisms on the planet, and some of the oldest, serving as irreplaceable carbon stores and habitats for many endangered species. Yet our Giants are disappearing. Climate change, fire and deforestation are wiping them out. In Tasmania, a lack of forest protections could see them gone within a generation. More >
Everything changes when Jen and Steve begin creating ‘Giant Tree Portraits’. These astonishing and unique photographs — captured through months of arduous work, skill and technical achievement — reveal the true scale of Giant Trees to the general public. Riding the wave of media publicity behind the publication of each new portrait, Jen and Steve become the face of a movement, shifting the attitude of Tasmanians, and the world, towards their own forests.
Going global, they have been invited to work with campaigns in Canada, Borneo and beyond, hoping to turn the tide of native forest logging before it’s too late. But can they and the passionate global community of scientists, climbers and artists work quickly enough to save the Grove of Giants from destruction? And by doing so, can the new portraits they produce raise awareness of the plight of Giants around the rest of the world?