Michio Hoshino 星野道夫
Michio Hoshino (1952–1996) was an acclaimed nature and animal photographer who fell in love with Alaska at the age of 19 when he was first introduced to it through a photo book. After graduating from college, he worked for two years as an assistant to leading animal photographer Kojo Tanaka before enrolling at the University of Alaska to study Wildlife Biology. He produced numerous spectacular photo collections of caribou, grizzly bears, and other wild fauna and flora of Alaska, as well as of the people who live there. In 1989 he received the Kimura Ihei Photography Award for Alaska: Kyokuhoku seimei no chizu (Alaska: A Map of Life in the Far North). He came to be regarded as one of the most accomplished nature photographers both in Japan and abroad, but was killed at the age of 43 by a brown bear at Russia's Kurile Lake in Kamchatka while on assignment for a television special. His essays and photos continue to enjoy a strong following today.