Lectures

Anthony’s lectures cover a wide range of fascinating topics, from the hidden techniques that go into creating public bronze statues, to the amazing ability of animals to navigate huge distances with great accuracy.

Inspired By Nature

The Art of Sculpting Wildlife

Anthony is a globe-trotting sculptor who gains the inspiration for his wildlife sculptures by carefully observing wild animals all around the world. These first-hand experiences are the starting points for the fascinating process of creating a bronze wildlife sculpture. Join Anthony to learn about the skilled work that goes into creating these sculptures, from the initial inspiration, to the finished bronze.

How To Be Remembered

The Immortalising Art of Bronze

Bronze portraits have survived for thousands of years, immortalising the memory of certain lucky individuals. There are many challenges for the artist who is commissioned to create these commemorative sculptures, and a suite of special techniques must be employed to create a fitting tribute. In this lecture Anthony will share insights into the esoteric world of commemorative sculpting, illustrated with examples of his own public works.

Making Money!

How Coins Changed The World

Coins have a long and fascinating history that offers special insights into our ever-changing cultures and values. Join Anthony to gain a new perspective on the every day objects that connect us to an Ancient world of trade, symbolism, and propaganda. He will also share insights into the contemporary world of coin design, including the story behind the new £2 coin that he designed and sculpted for the Royal Mint, which is now in general circulation in the United Kingdom.

The Artists Who Showed Us The World

There are many reasons why people have chosen to explore the planet – some were searching for wealth and fame, some were driven by a sense of duty, or adventure, but some sought out new places as a source of inspiration for their art. In this lecture Anthony looks at the life and work of some of history’s great ‘explorer artists’, and the artworks that transformed how we see the world.

Are Animal Artists?

Creative Creatures Of The Animal Kingdom

Do animals have a creative side? For a long time we thought that a desire to create art was a strictly human endeavour, but the more that we study the animal kingdom the more we realise that we are not alone in our appreciation of the arts!

Heroes of Polar Photography

An illuminating and inspiring look at life and works of two great photographers from the Heroic Age of Antarctic exploration; Frank Hurley and Herbert Ponting.

Pioneers of Polar Art

In this lecture Anthony discusses two masterful artists – William Bradford and Frank Hurley. These two impressive men shared their creative visions of the polar regions with the wider world, transforming the way that people thought about these frigid, remote corners of the planet.

The Evolution of Wildlife Art

What was going through the mind of our ancient ancestors when they covered their cave walls with paintings of animals? Is that source of inspiration shared with wildlife artists today, or has our relationship with nature fundamentally changed? In this lecture Anthony Smith examines the myriad ways in which humans have depicted wild animals across the ages, and how our increased understanding of the natural world has transformed the way that we depict animals in art.

Light, Composition & Moment

Non-technical Tips for Great Photography

In this lecture Anthony discusses three key principles for great photography, illustrated with plenty of eye-catching examples. This lecture is non-technical and is aimed at anyone with an interest in photography, regardless of previous experience or the type of equipment they have; a professional DSLR, a compact camera, or a smartphone… it doesn’t matter which!

Picture Perfect!

The Art of Photographing Strangers

You may be visiting picturesque locations with stunning landscape and wildlife subjects for photography, but there are also always great opportunities to photograph colourful and charismatic people. In this lecture Anthony will discuss why photographing the people that you meet during your travels can be both challenging and extremely rewarding, and will share his tips and techniques for capturing interesting and engaging images.

The Camera Always Lies!

The Amazing World of Photo Manipulation

Making alterations to images is nothing new – manipulating photographs has a long and colourful history. In this lecture Anthony will discuss the many, varied, often bizarre and sometimes hilarious forms of photo manipulation and will attempt to get to the bottom of exactly what we consider to be acceptable, and where this runaway world of image manipulation might be taking us.

Five Years of Seasickness

Darwin’s Voyage aboard HMS Beagle

The Voyage of the Beagle is without a doubt one of the most important voyages of discovery ever undertaken. Its five-year circumnavigation eventually led to a scientific revolution and a fundamental change in the way we understand the natural world, and our place within it. The man behind this scientific breakthrough was of course Charles Darwin, but none of it would have happened had it not been for a bizarre and unexpected series of events that occurred years before. Join Anthony to learn the incredible tale that led to Darwin’s epic adventure.

The Animal that Fuelled the World

The History of Whaling

As bizarre and horrific as it may seem, the development of the modern world was fuelled by the blubber of whales. Join Anthony to learn about the controversial but important history of how humans have utilised whales, from the past centuries right up to today.

  • An excellent YouTube video by Ben Schmidt showing the tracks of US whaling vessels from the 19th century.
  • The wonderful South Georgia Museum at the old whaling station of Grytviken has a great website with some excellent information about an important whaling station of the 20th century.
  • A great virtual tour of the Grytviken whaling station on the subantarctic island of South Georgia. It’s almost as good as being there!
  • A fascinating documentary video showing pelagic whaling in Antarctica in the 1940s.

Greyhounds of the Sea

The Clipper Story

The 19th Century saw the development of the sleek, fast sailing ships known as clippers. These beautiful vessels raced high value commodities around the world, supplying the demands of an ever-growing, wealthy nation. Anthony has sailed around the world on one of these ships – join him to learn the fascinating story of these vessels, the role they played, and what it’s like to sail on one today.

Leviathan’s Graveyard

The Story of Grytviken

In 2013-14 Anthony spend two months on South Georgia as the Artist In Residence living at the old, abandoned whaling station of Grytviken. In his lecture you will discover the remarkable history of South Georgia’s first whaling station and the radical transformations that the site has undergone during the past century.

  • The wonderful South Georgia Museum at Grytviken has a great website with some excellent information about this important whaling station of the 20th century.
  • A great virtual tour of the Grytviken whaling station on the subantarctic island of South Georgia. It’s almost as good as being there!

The Falkland Islands

An Amazing Archipelago

In this lecture Anthony gives an insight into this fascinating cluster of islands in the far South of the world, including the islands’ history, climate, geography, wildlife, and what is it like to live on these remote islands today.

Flying Devils

The Story Of A Hated Bird

The Striated caracara, or ‘Johnny Rook’, is a remarkable bird found only on the Falkland Islands and a few small islands around Cape Horn. In this lecture Anthony shares the fascinating history of human conflict with this species, inspired by the article that he wrote and photographed for the BBC Wildlife Magazine in 2015.

Biodiversity

The Spice of Life!

Our world is home to countless different life forms, big and small, weird and wonderful. We always encounter different types of biodiversity when travelling; understanding exactly why there are different species, and different numbers of species, around the world is a fascinating puzzle.

  • Protected Planet is a great website for tracking the level of protection for both marine and terrestrial areas around the world.
  • The official Red List from the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) for all of the threatened species of the world.
  • An interesting article by Forbes discussing Angelfish hybridisation.

Animal Navigation

How do whales navigate huge distances across featureless oceans? How do birds migrate thousands of miles with perfect accuracy? How do turtles swim the seas for decades and then return to the same small beach on which they hatched? These seemingly impossible feats have stumped scientists for centuries, but at long last we are now unravelling the mysteries of animal navigation – join Anthony to discover the answers to these fascinating questions.

Whistling Whales & Flatulent Fish

The Noisy World Under The Waves

We tend to think of the underwater world as a quiet and peaceful place, but that is far from being the case. Ocean animals produce a cacophony of sounds, created in some weird and wonderful ways. Join Anthony to discover why the sea isn’t so silent after all and how these underwater sounds once brought Sweden to the brink of war!

Kaleidoscopic Kingdom

Examining Nature’s Colourful Creatures

Can you imagine a tropical reef without any colourful fish or corals? The natural world would be a very dull place if it were not for all the bright and brilliantly coloured creatures that inhabit it! Join Anthony to learn about why animals have evolved their various tints and tones, and the kaleidoscope of different ways in which creatures use colour.

What’s In A Name?

The Strange Stories Behind Species Names

What do you think of when you hear the name ‘Sarcastic fringehead‘ or the ‘Devil-on-both-sides‘? The names of plants and animals can conjure up beautiful, evocative or even confusing images in our minds. And what about scientific names, like ‘Trigonopterus chewbacca‘? What do these names tell us? And who comes up with all these names in the first place? In this talk, Anthony with shed light on this funny and surprising subject.

Life At Sea

Amazing Ocean Creatures

When you glance at the ocean surrounding the ship it might seem like a vast desert, devoid of life. But the ocean is filled with an incredible array of fascinating creatures. In this lecture Anthony will highlight some of the amazing animals to keep an eye out for during this voyage at sea.