National Geographic

The oldest culture on the planet, Aboriginals have inhabited the Australian continent for more than 50,000 years. National Geographic photographer  Amy Toensing spent three years documenting their lives and captured how their ancient tradition lives on in the modern world. 

Hear More: Amy Toensing speaks Tuesday, March 17 at 7:30 at the Muriel Kauffman Theatre. For information and tickets, click here.

Jodi Cobb

National Geographic photographer Jodi Cobb travels great distances to discover the secret realms of world culture. She has documented fascinating visual stories about many subjects, including the quirky nature of twins, the hidden lives of Saudi Arabian women and Japanese geishas.

Julie Denesha / KCUR

The remains of a sunken pirate ship found off of Cape Cod, Mass. in 1984 form the ballast of the traveling National Geographic exhibit Real Pirates, opening June 22 at Union Station. The exhibit also features some 200 artifacts found nearby on the ocean floor and, to heighten its authenticity, Union Station has hired a number of actors who will be playing real and fictitious pirates that visitors will be encouraged to engage.

Catherine Karnow

From the Australian Outback to Bollywood, Albanian farmland to Vietnam, National Geographic travel photographer Catherine Karnow has been around the world to capture its images with her camera.

Brian Skerry was inspired by National Geographic at a young age but it took several decades for this underwater photographer to land his dream job.

Often described in the media as “a female Indiana Jones,” Mireya Mayor is not your typical scientist.

Both as an anthropologist working in the jungles of Madagascar, and as a wildlife correspondent for National Geographic, the city girl and former Miami Dolphins cheerleader has found herself sleeping in a rain forest hammock amid poisonous snakes, being charged by gorillas, scaling rocky cliffs, and diving with great white sharks.

Mattias Klum

Mattias Klum makes a living by shooting photographs of some of the world's most endangered species and places.

A photographer for National Geographic, Klum might be considered an endangered species himself, given his recent work shooting closes ups of the venomous Chinese cobra, which can shoot its venom up to nearly 7 feet. Even a drop of that venom can blind you.

But there he sat....shooting away....nonetheless.

National Geographic

There's a line of work where the risks include toxic layers of hydrogen sulfide and maze-like passageways.  (No, we're not talking the halls of Congress.) It's the exploration of underwater caves and blue holes. Many consider survival to be is the mark of a successful dive ... so, are the risks worth it?