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About Don Johnston



• Don is a self-taught natural history photographer, with a degree in Biological Sciences

• He taught high school biology, retiring after nearly thirty years.

• He's been pursuing nature photography for over thirty years.

• He has travelled and photographed extensively throughout North America and have studied with such notable nature photographers as John Shaw, Freeman Patterson and Tim Fitzharris.

• He is widely published, with hundreds of credits in magazines such as National Geographic Explorer, National Wildlife and Harrowsmith Country Life, calendars such as National Geographic, World Wildlife Fund, Audubon, Teldon and Harrowsmith, text books, advertising such as Nikon and other media.

• His prints hang in private collections in Sudbury and as far afield as Atlanta.

• Along with noted Canadian photographer Mike Grandmaison, Don photographed the 2001 Sudbury book project Healing the Landscape, now in its third printing. In 2010 Don self published a hardcover coffee table book of images from the Greater Sudbury Region titled Close to Home, which has now sold out.

• This award winning nature photographer currently lives in Lively, Ontario, Canada with his wife Brenda and son Matthew.

What's In the Bag?

  • Don has photographed in a Digital format since 2003.
  • Currently he uses Nikon Digital bodies: D5,, D850.
  • He owns range of Nikkor lenses from 14-24mm to 600mm. Recent upgrades include: Nikkor 14-24 VR, 24-70, 70-200 VR, 200-500mm VR.
  • Scanned slides were produced from Leica and Nikon film bodies.

What's on the Desk?

Effective Digital photography demands the competent use of computers, hard drives, scanners and software.

  • Currently Don uses Apple MacIntosh MacPro tower and Macbook Pro computers together with a calibrated NEC 30" display.
  • He scans with a Nikon 9000 film scanner.
  • His software includes: Adobe Photoshop CC 2018 and Adobe Camera Raw, Lightroom Classic CC), Helicon Focus, as well as Imagenomic noise reduction software.

Photo Agencies

Don's photos are represented by the following stock agencies.

  • age fotostock (Barcelona)
  • All Canada Photos (Victoria)
  • Alamy (United Kingdom)

Stock photography by Don Johnston at Alamy

  • Getty Images via All Canada Photos.
  • Grandmaison Photography
  • PhotoEdit (California)
  • Interfoto (Germany)

On-Line Portals

Don's photos can be seen by visiting the following sites.

Organizations/ Affiliations

  • Federation of Ontario Naturalists
  • Sudbury Naturalists
  • Travel EP: TOPA
  • NPS Nikon Professional Services
  • LinkedIn Profile

Photo Contests

I rarely participate in photo contests these days. I'm suspicious of the motives of the organizers behind many of today�s photo contests. I feel that many organizers offer prizes to winners in the guise of acquiring a library of royalty free, high quality photography. To me this is crowdsourcing and rights grabbing- with an insistence on acquiring all usage rights from participants buried in the contest entry rules . In the past I was an avid contest participant with some successes as you can see from the list below.

  • Grand Prize- 1995 Sierra Photo Contest; winner 1989 Sierra Club photo contest (wildlife division)


  • Grand Prize 1992 FON Photo Salon; first place in various categories 1994, 1995, 1996, 1997
  • Photo Life magazine annual contests. Prize-winner in multiple years.
  • Canadian Geographic photo contest category winner 1997.
  • National Wildlife Photo Contest 2011 2nd baby animals, pro division, honourable mention.