You’ll find just about every color under the sun in Carl C. Hansen’s photographs from the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute in Panama during his time as its photographer between 1985 and 1992.
And although his role at the research center was his first, though certainly not his last, at the Smithsonian, Hansen had already proved himself to be an experienced photographer. During the Vietnam War, he joined the Army as part of a special unit trained in motion picture and still photography. During that time, he captured historic moments from the Tet Offensive and President Nixon’s visit to a combat zone. Following the war, Hansen worked for various newspapers and NBC News before packing up and heading to the Smithsonian.
After seven years in Panama, Hansen earned the role of chief of photography at Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History. By 2008, Hansen served as the director of the Smithsonian Photographic Services when it was formally transferred to our collections at the Smithsonian Institution Archives.
For Nature Photography Day, scroll through just a few of the 10,000 images Hansen captured during first role at the Institution as photographer of the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute.
- “Biodiversity Illustrated” by Marguerite Roby, The Bigger Picture, Smithsonian Institution Archives
- “Ask A Veteran” by Rebecca Maksel, Smithsonian Magazine
- Specialist 5 Carl C. Hansen, Faces of War: Documenting the Vietnam War from the Front Lines, Pritzer Military Museum and Library