Radim Schreiber

Fairfield, IA

Artist's Statement

When I first moved to Iowa, I was mesmerized by the abundance and brightness of fireflies during summer nights. During my childhood in the Czech Republic, I had never seen anything like that. I fell in love with fireflies, and the idea for this project was born. It was in 2003, and I was on the plane when I felt inspired. So, I made a sketch on a paper; it was a glowing firefly on a silhouetted blade of grass, with the moon in the background and the dark blue sky. Since then I had this image in my head, waiting for the right time to materialize.

I wasn't able to photograph fireflies until there were advancements of low light capabilities of the latest camera equipment to photograph fireflies. Since 2008, each summer I would photograph and video record fireflies. I have received several awards and also been published in numerous publications for my firefly photos. I have exhibited Firefly photos in the USA, London, Rio DeJaneiro, Hungary and Czech Republic. The pinnacle of the firefly debut experience was my night show at Teeple Hansen Gallery in Fairfield, Iowa. I created whole environment with firefly photos, dim lights and night sounds. I still remember the light and happiness on the people's faces.

About Technique

I do not manipulate any of the firefly photographs. I used standard photography techniques such as basic contrast or color adjustment. The glow is the same glow as camera captured it. I took all the photos of the fireflies on this website in their natural environment, without flash or any other artificial lighting. I believe that this is the only way to preserve its true luminosity and bioluminescent glow.

The most challenging aspect of firefly photography is the fleeting nature of fireflies. When they glow, they like to fly or move. They never seem to be still for very long, and so I struggle to quickly compose my shots. It was sometimes almost complete darkness and I took the photo right when the firefly illuminated... and all that when being bitten by other insects. This truly shows my patience.


I believe that fireflies open doors to joy, magic and deep connection with nature. It is my mission to use the latest technology to represent fireflies in the best light possible and, understand and communicate their message to the world. I believe that fireflies have power to connect with various cultures and bring connection and understanding among them.


I would like to photograph fireflies and other bioluminescent forms in various countries, oceans, and display their glowing beauty around the world in galleries, shows, three dimensional displays, books, movies, documentaries and more.