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by Aloma Jardine
The beauty of bugs
Robert Ganz ('88) turns photographic hobby into a piece of history
obert Ganz has an unusual hobby
for someone who says he is afraid
of bugs.
"I'm not a big fan of spiders. If I get one on
me, I'm going to scream like a girl, but I love
taking pictures of them," he says.
Through the lens of his camera, Ganz makes
ordinary bugs into works of art, showing
the creatures in extraordinary detail.
Now one of those photographs is featured
on a collector coin by the Royal Cana-
dian Mint, the grand prize in
Geographic's annual Canadian Wildlife
Photography of the Year contest.
"I've been entering the
Canadian Geo-
graphic contest since 2003 and have won a
bunch of prizes, but last year when I knew
the grand prize was a coin, I was more care-
ful about the pictures I submitted," says
Ganz, who lives in Montreal. "I really want-
ed to win that prize."
A coin collector himself, Ganz says he could
not think of a better award.
"It really is once in a lifetime," he says.
"Unless you are a famous artist or in the
business, how else can you get something
like that?"
The mint unveiled the $10 fine silver
coin in June. Ganz had a chance to
tour the mint, make a few copies of the
coin with his son, and speak with the
engraver who spent two weeks converting
his photograph of a praying mantis into
an engraving. The photograph was on
display at the Canadian Museum of
Nature in Ottawa throughout
the summer.