When going to a zoo, the first thing that comes to mind is the animals. However, we observed something else. In The Great Apes Habitat, we ran into Bill Seegil, an almost 71 year old man living close to the Smithsonian National Zoological Park in nearby Rockville, Maryland.
Bill, specializes in black and white film photography and has been a member and teacher of many photography clubs. For around 60 years, nearlyhalf as long as the 125 year zoo has been open to the public, Bill has gone about once a week to photograph the animals and the environment. With over 6 miles of just zoo photography, Bill definitely knows his stuff. Taking the metro, he always takes his photograph gear with him. This includes his camera, flash, and telephoto lense. And lots of film rolls. We caught Bill about an hour into taking pictures and he had already gone through an entire 35mm roll of film.
Before the interview with our new friend, Bill showed us his first selfie. When he first said, “Do you guys want to see my first selfie?” we both assumed he meant on a phone. But this picture, which he carries with him at all times, was originally taken on an 8 by 11 inch piece of film using an old box camera. His love of film photography has taken him all across the country. It brought him all the way to the San Diego Zoo once less than 2 hundred miles away from our home town, Santa Barbara, California.