WE HEART: Extreme Photographer, Hanne Zak

Photo: Annie Brady

The Ultimate Catch: Intriguing Seattleites

Photo: Annie Brady

Hanne Zak

24 | Seattle, WA

Hometown: Bothell, WA

Occupation: Professional Adventure Photographer

Why We Heart Them

This adventure seeking young lady isn’t satisfied with the typical trips to Hawaii or Mexico, she prefers to brave the bone chilling cold in extreme explorations of the great Antarctic wilderness. Hanne grew up in Bothell and has always called Washington her home base, but she has ventured to the edges of the world throughout her life, and has seen all seven continents and 20 countries before turning 18. She has now 65 countries under her belt — quite impressive!

Her extreme travels is where she fell in love with photography. Hanne got her first film camera when she was traveling with her father to Antarctica at age 11, and the spark for photography grew from that point forward.

Hanne says her dad has always been an avid traveler, and as Hanne puts it, “the apple does not fall far from the tree.”  In 1997, her father began working for the company Quark Expeditions, which specializes in Arctic and Antarctic travel.

“I traveled with my dad many times and when I was old enough, worked on the ships as well as the photographer.” Hanne has been back several times since, and most recently, just this past December, she traveled to the Weddell Sea to capture the Emperor penguins. “The penguins have never been mass hunted and have no land predators so they are really curious and friendly. If you sit down, they will come right up to you.”

Her passion and drive for capturing these special moments on film has led her to start her own photography business in Seattle. Hanne has photographed the Sonics, Lakers and Seahawks, but specializes in nature and travel journalism, specifically the polar regions.

Hanne also gives back to her alma mater at Gonzaga University, and donates her photography talent to the Coaches vs Cancer event in Spokane each year. “It’s a huge charity event that Gonzaga puts together every August to help raise money to fight cancer,” she says. “It’s really an honor to work closely with them and use my talents to help such a great cause.”

When she’s not donating her time to help the community or traveling to far off destinations for her photography work, Hanne is busy learning how to fly, and  is currently in the process of getting her pilots license.

Are you intrigued and like what you see? Let us know! Email us at catch@seattleite.com.