Photographs of odd plants living in the wild and grown in cultivation. Notes from the field and glimpses inside the greenhouse.
All text and images are copyright Forbes Conrad; all rights reserved.
I am a visual documentarian based in Oaxaca, Mexico.
An early interest in strange plants grew out of exposure to members of the Bromeliaceae. In the early 2000’s, I began attending Los Angeles Carnivorous Plant Society meetings, through which I met and was inspired by the research and exploration of figures including Alfred Lau, Edward Read, Ivan Snyder, John Brittnacher, Fernando Rivadavia, Leo Song Jr., Barry Rice, and Art North.
While studying, I spent numerous summers traveling to botanize in the Pacific Northwest and Mexico, often with Noah Elhardt. Later, holidays and weekends were occupied visiting plants in Thailand, Macau, Hong Kong and mainland China.
While living in southern California, I propagated and sold a large variety of carnivorous plants at LACPS and BACPS meetings, as well as providing stock to retail nurseries, including California Carnivores. When I left the country to live in south China, the plants from my permanent collection found a new home at the California State University, Fullerton facilities, where they still comprise a majority of the institution’s Sarracenia collection.
At destinations throughout Asia, the Americas, and Europe, I have been distracted from botanizing by advertising and marketing projects for many a multinational company, usually relating to food and dining. In the context of news and editorial stories, my portraits, feature images and reportage have appeared in many of the magazines and newspapers you have heard of, and quite a few you haven’t.
When not filming documentary work that explores cultural values or photographing food and beverages, I am currently investigating the distribution of Mexican Pinguicula.