” You don’t make a photograph just with a camera. You bring to the act of photography all the pictures you have seen, the books you have read, the music you have heard, the people you have loved”
Ansel Adams

Martin is a passionate professional photographer specializing in issues concerning nature, landscape, travel, recreation and tourism, nature conservation, man and environment.

Since 1996 he works for travel and nature magazines, publishers, communication agencies, government organisations, nature conservation NGO’s and nature travel tour operators.

In the first years as a photographer Martin was an all-rounder and photographed for outdoor, travel, garden, lifestyle and food magazines. He even photographed for about twenty cookbooks, food and location photography, did models, studio and more. Now he is focused on nature, wildlife, landscape, tourism and conservation.

With his work Martin wants to show the beauty of nature and contribute to awareness of the importance of nature, a healthy planet. In his home country the Netherlands he works since 2007 for the nature conservation ngo Natuurmonumenten for a wilder country, conservation of biodiversity and living with nature.

Highlights in his career so far are three assignments for National Geographic (Dutch edition of NG Traveler), to Tanzania (Tanzania, the wild paradise, published in 2/2016), Sri Lanka (Wild Sri Lanka, 2/2018) and Azores (The giants of the sea, 2/2020). For complete articles, text and photography. On the website of National Geographic Netherlands you can read and see TANZANIA: HET WILDE PARADIJS and WILD SRI LANKA.

Martin has won several prizes in prestigious international photo competitions. Such as in the Wildlife Photographer of the Year, European Wildlife Photographer of the Year, Asferico, Oasis, Biophotocontest, MontPhoto and Memorial Maria Luisa. See AWARDS for photos and more.

Since 2002, Martin has guided photo trips for SNP Natuurreizen and All for Nature Travel to Antarctica, India, Costa Rica, Tanzania, Botswana, South Africa, Alaska, Colorado Plateau, Tuscany and Galápagos. From 2024 also for Starling Reizen. See PHOTO TOURS for the 2024 program.

Since 2008 he has been giving nature, landscape and flower photography workshops. Occasionally also architecture or travel photography. See WORKSHOPS for the 2023-2024 program.

Martin at work on Seychelles Islands

Ever since his early childhood Martin is fascinated by the natural world. He had a great time as a teenager at the Nederlandse Jeugdbond voor Natuurstudie (NJN), a Dutch youth association for nature study. Most of his free time was spent in nature, especially passionately bird watching.

Martin studied biology at the Utrecht University and graduated in 1990, specialization Aquatic Toxicology. There he then worked for almost two years as a researcher at the Research Institute of Toxicology (RITOX, now the IRAS, Institute for Risk Assessment Studies – Toxicology) – on a project for Rijkswaterstaat.
In the meantime Martin had become more than fascinated with nature photography. A trip to India, especially in search of tigers, and a lecture by Frans Lanting were decisive. He decided to leave a career as a biologist behind to pursue a life as a professional photographer.

Martin and family in mountains with Swiss flag.PERSONAL LIFE
“Someone recently asked me: “That Martin van Lokven … he is new, isn’t he? And then I thought … No, he was there a long, long time ago, but suddenly seemed to have disappeared from the face of the earth.’ Founding a family and raising children, it appears now. Still photographing, but not 200 percent anymore. Still active, but less visible.”

The text above is an excerpt from an interview in 2017 by Roeselien Raimond for, the platform for nature photographers in the Netherlands. For the full interview/article with portfolio on, see MARTIN VAN LOKVEN IN BEELD.

With his family Martin lives on the Utrechtse Heuvelrug, Netherlands.