Timothy Allen

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For other people named Timothy Allen, see Timothy Allen (disambiguation).
Timothy Allen
Timothy allen.jpg
Born (1971-05-26) 26 May 1971 (age 45)
Tonbridge, England
Nationality British
Alma mater University of Leeds
Occupation Photographer, Director
Known for Human Planet
Website www.humanplanet.com

Timothy Allen (born 1971 in Tonbridge, Kent) is an English photographer and filmmaker best known for his work with indigenous people and isolated communities around the world.

Early life[edit]

Timothy Allen was born in Tonbridge, Kent, the second son of two school teachers. He attended The Judd School and took further education at Leeds University where he received a BSc in Zoology. Whilst at university, Allen undertook a three-month ecological research project in remote jungle on the Indonesian Island of Sulawesi during which an encounter with a reclusive forest dwelling tribe proved to be a pivotal point in his life.[1] Subsequently, after graduating from university he returned to Indonesia where he spent a further 3 years traveling and studying. It was during this time that he discovered his passion for photography. At the age of 27 he began a part-time diploma in photography in Hereford and for his first year project he joined an aid convoy to Mostar during the town's struggle to rebuild itself after the Yugoslav Wars.


After returning from Bosnia, Allen was offered his first job as a freelance photographer working at the Sunday Telegraph in London. A year later, after commissions from all of the British broadsheet publications, he eventually settled into a six-year position at The Independent.[2]

A member of Axiom Photographic Agency from 2002 to 2011 his more recent work has revolved around indigenous peoples. It was a personal project in Bhutan, India and Nepal designed to escape the "rat race back home" that lead the BBC to commission him as part of the Human Planet team.[3][4] In 2012 Allen signed with the International film production company Great Guns who currently represent him worldwide.[5]

Human Planet[edit]

In 2008, the BBC commissioned Allen to work on the documentary project Human Planet. This was the first time that the BBC had employed a dedicated photographer on a landmark series.[6] He spent over a year and a half travelling with 4 teams, covering stories of human endeavour in over forty countries around the world. Using the newly released first generation of DSLR cameras with HD video capabilities, Allen shot content for the programme and its accompanying multimedia projects[7] as well as imagery that was published in a best-selling[8] BBC book, formed an exhibition and was used in the program's worldwide branding and publicity.

He wrote a weekly blog for BBC Earth, documenting his work during Human Planet.[9]


'Human Planet' has won a host of awards including two BAFTAs and an Emmy Award as well as the ITB's Cultural Book Prize[20]


  1. ^ Leeds Alumni Magazine. Issue 09
  2. ^ About Timothy Allen
  3. ^ http://humanplanet.com/timothyallen/about/
  4. ^ http://blog.travellerspoint.com/90/
  5. ^ http://www.greatguns.com/news/timothy-allen-wins-travel-photographer-of-the-year/
  6. ^ http://www.humanplanetblog.com/?p=143
  7. ^ http://timothyallen.blogs.bbcearth.com/2009/02/24/a-short-film-shot-with-my-new-camera/
  8. ^ http://www.independent.co.uk/news/media/tv-radio/story-of-survival-how-the-bbc-has-revived-photojournalism-2179589.html
  9. ^ The blog may be found here (bbcearth.com).
  10. ^ http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2524818/Stunning-images-revealed-winners-Travel-Photographer-Of-The-Year-awards-2013.html
  11. ^ http://tpoty.com/2010/winners/gallerytpoty2007.html
  12. ^ http://www.tpoty.com/2010/winners/gallerytpoty2010.html
  13. ^ http://www.tpoty.com/winners/2011
  14. ^ http://www.tpoty.com/winners/2012
  15. ^ http://www.tpoty.com/winners/2014
  16. ^ http://www.tpoty.com/winners/2015
  17. ^ http://www.theppy.com/content/results2007
  18. ^ "Picture Perfect: Prestigious award for Independent photographer Tim". The Independent (London), 28 May 2002. At findarticles.com; accessed 9 April 2009.
  19. ^ http://www.theguardian.com/media/2003/mar/19/pressandpublishing3
  20. ^ http://www.itb-berlin.de/en/MediaCentre/PressReleasesAndNews/index.jsp?lang=en&id=271936

External links[edit]