The Blog Aquatic » photography http://blog.oceanconservancy.org News, opinions, photos and facts from Ocean Conservancy Thu, 14 Aug 2014 17:21:33 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.4.2 And the Winners Are… http://blog.oceanconservancy.org/2014/07/28/and-the-winners-are/ http://blog.oceanconservancy.org/2014/07/28/and-the-winners-are/#comments Mon, 28 Jul 2014 19:42:01 +0000 Jackie Yeary http://blog.oceanconservancy.org/?p=8844

Congratulations to the winners of Ocean Conservancy’s Summer 2014 Marine Wildlife and Seascape Photo Contest! With more than 1,200 entries, we were amazed at the beautiful images that all of you submitted.

The top two prizes were awarded to Ian Lindsey and Christian Martinez, whose photographs received Judges’ Choice and People’s Choice. Ian’s photo “Honu Gathering” depicts a group of sea turtles gathered on a Hawaiian beach at sunset, while Christian’s image “Ocean, Waves and Nature” perfectly captures the beauty of a Puerto Rican beach.

This summer’s contest also included winners from five different categories: Arctic, Our Ocean, Fish, Gulf of Mexico and Human Impact. The winners for these categories are:

Be sure to check out their beautiful images in the gallery below.

Judges' Choice: Ian Lindsey, "Honu Gathering" People's Choice: Christian Martinez, "Ocean, Waves and Nature" Arctic: Bill Boswell, "Puffin With Sand Eels" Our Ocean: Albert Oll Callau, "Pink Fluid" Fish: Erik Olsen, "Catch At Dawn" Gulf of Mexico: William Camarota, "Colorful Caspersen Sunset" Human Impact: Veronika Kinga Havas, "Baby Born"

 

Congratulations again to all of our winners!  To see more of our staff favorites, be sure to check out our Instagram. If you submitted a photo to our contest, don’t forget to look for it in our 2016 Ocean Wildlife Calendar.

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Announcing Ocean Conservancy’s Summer Marine Wildlife and Seascape Photo Contest http://blog.oceanconservancy.org/2014/06/11/announcing-ocean-conservancys-summer-marine-wildlife-and-seascape-photo-contest/ http://blog.oceanconservancy.org/2014/06/11/announcing-ocean-conservancys-summer-marine-wildlife-and-seascape-photo-contest/#comments Wed, 11 Jun 2014 13:23:14 +0000 Jackie Yeary http://blog.oceanconservancy.org/?p=8485 Today is the launch of Ocean Conservancy’s Marine Wildlife and Seascape Photo Contest!

Does your photography celebrate the ocean? We’d love to see it! This contest is designed for you to share beautiful imagery of our ocean, waterways and coasts.

Enter your photos today to help celebrate the ocean, raise money for ocean conservation, and win great prizes! We have moved our photo contest from the winter to the summer and are expecting this change to bring in even more amazing photos.

Here’s how it works:

  1. Upload your favorite ocean-themed photos by July 8. Only photos that you have taken are eligible for submission.
  2. Enter your photo into one of five categories: Human Impact, Fish, Arctic, Gulf of Mexico, Our Ocean.
  3. Tell your friends about your photos and ask them to vote for you! For each dollar they donate, you will receive one vote. Not only will they be supporting your work, but they will also be supporting ocean conservation and helping wildlife. The photo that receives the most eligible votes will be crowned People’s Choice. You can vote at any time!

We also have a professional panel of judges that will select the Grand Prize Winner and the five category winners based on the quality of the entries—no votes necessary.

Your photo could be featured in Ocean Conservancy’s 2016 Ocean Wildlife Calendar—even on the cover!

Click here to learn more about our photo contest and enter your photos today.

We look forward to seeing the amazing places your passion for the ocean has taken you!

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Photographer Joshua Cripps Shares His Tips for Capturing the Ocean on Film http://blog.oceanconservancy.org/2013/07/26/photography-tips-joshua-cripps/ http://blog.oceanconservancy.org/2013/07/26/photography-tips-joshua-cripps/#comments Fri, 26 Jul 2013 23:15:59 +0000 Lauren Malkani http://blog.oceanconservancy.org/?p=6288 photographer capturing the ocean

Credit: Juan Ramon Rodriguez Sosa via Flickr

Photographer Joshua Cripps, winner of Ocean Conservancy’s 2012 Marine Life and Seascape Photo Contest, explains why the ocean makes for dynamic images, how to take better photos and why photography can help save the planet:

What attracted you to photography?

After college, I did a lot of traveling, and my experiences as I journeyed from country to country opened up my eyes to the incredible beauty and magic in the world. But my ability to convey my sense of awe and wonder to my friends and family back home was sadly lacking, and I began to yearn for a better way to share the world as I saw it.

Thus the seed of photography was planted. But it wasn’t until a year or so later, when I got my first digital single-lens reflex (DSLR) camera, that the seed began to sprout. After that, all hope was lost: like a rampant vine, my love of photography grew and grew until it pretty much took over my life.

What do you value most in a photo?

What I value most in a photo is a good story, especially a story of a place I haven’t seen or heard of before. When I see a photo, I want to feel compelled to find out more about what’s happening in the image, where it was taken, how it came to be and what it makes me think about. A good photo should provoke something in the viewer.

What tips do you have for budding photographers?

  • Take a lot of photos. Shoot until you can’t shoot anymore, and then shoot more. Shoot anything and everything that catches your fancy, but always ask yourself why you are taking that photo.
  • Find photos you love. Then figure out why you love them. What are the technical, compositional and processing techniques the photographer used to get you to feel the way you do? Break them down piece-by-piece and figure out why they work.
  • Find photos you don’t like. Then figure out why. Where is the photographer failing? Why don’t these photos work? Join critique groups and ask other photographers to offer you suggestions.
  • Take as many workshops as you can afford. There is no single better or faster way to become a better photographer than by learning from photographers who are more experienced and can help steer you in the right direction for your art.

What attracts you to the ocean as a photographic subject?

Simply put, the ocean is the most dynamic landscape I can think of. It changes from month to month, day to day and even second to second. I’ve been to beaches where within a single 24-hour period, hundreds of tons of sand have been scooped from one end of the beach and deposited on the other, exposing certain rocks and burying others.

When shooting waves, a mere half-second pause between photos can create images of startling difference. The ocean is a place where all aspects of photography come together to create some of the most fun and dynamic image-making I’ve experienced.

Do you think photography can help raise awareness about ocean issues?

Absolutely. There’s no other form of media that has the instantaneous impact of a photo. A photo can be taken in at a glance but can tell a story with a richness and eloquence that words can’t match. Photos help people understand our planet and our ocean and the state they’re in.

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“Midway” Film Tells Story of Plastics in Our Ocean Through Plight of Albatross http://blog.oceanconservancy.org/2013/03/28/midway-film-tells-story-of-plastics-in-our-ocean-through-plight-of-albatross/ http://blog.oceanconservancy.org/2013/03/28/midway-film-tells-story-of-plastics-in-our-ocean-through-plight-of-albatross/#comments Thu, 28 Mar 2013 20:23:35 +0000 Sarah van Schagen http://blog.oceanconservancy.org/?p=5307

MIDWAY : trailer : a film by Chris Jordan from Midway on Vimeo.

Artist Chris Jordan is best known for his large-scale images that deconstruct huge numbers while making a statement about our mass consumption habits. For example, the tiny pieces of plastic in “Gyre” represent the pounds of plastic that enter the world’s ocean.

Jordan’s latest project, “Midway,” is a feature-length film that expands on the plastic pollution problem by focusing on the plastic fragments that fill up albatross stomachs as they try to feed in the open ocean. Scientists estimate that 4.5 metric tons of plastic arrive on Midway Atoll every year in the stomachs of the albatross.

The trailer includes some disturbing images of dead and dying birds, but as the narrator says, “Do we have the courage to face the realities of our time and allow ourselves to feel deeply enough that it transforms us and our future?” We can only hope the answer is “yes.”

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5 Questions with Photographer Marc Shargel on Wonders of the Sea http://blog.oceanconservancy.org/2012/07/23/5-questions-with-photographer-marc-shargel-on-wonders-of-the-sea/ http://blog.oceanconservancy.org/2012/07/23/5-questions-with-photographer-marc-shargel-on-wonders-of-the-sea/#comments Mon, 23 Jul 2012 15:00:06 +0000 Catherine Fox http://blog.oceanconservancy.org/?p=1202

The long arms of a blood star stretch across purple California hydrocoral. Credit: Marc Shargel.

Page through Marc Shargel’s three-book series “Wonders of the Sea” about California’s coast and you’ll be awed by both the human history and the natural history told through photographs and stories. An award-winning photographer, Shargel learned to scuba dive while studying marine biology at Stanford’s Hopkins Marine Station in Pacific Grove. He has been diving for more than 30 years, from lush kelp forests to isolated offshore pinnacles, and observed many changes. To celebrate California’s network of marine protected areas, Marc shares some of what he’s seen through his lens.

Catch the interview and more amazing photos after the jump.

1. Which marine plant or animal do you most like to photograph underwater, and why?

All of them! But one subject I photograph over and over is kelp. Even though I have hundreds of pictures of kelp, I’m always inspired to interpret it in new ways.

And there’s always a chance of finding one of the dozens of little critters that live in the kelp forest, like a snail we have here that is unbelievably gaudy – it’s got spiral bands of gold and purple. Frequently, I’ll seek out one of those and see if I can do a better job of lighting or framing it.

2. What are some of the biggest changes you’ve observed in the ocean over the past 34 years?

From black abalone to many kinds of fish, things are disappearing. I did my first scuba dive at the Monterey breakwater in 1978. I saw schools of blue rockfish swimming through the kelp. This is a spot where people can drop fishing hooks right over the dive site, and since my first visit 34 years ago, blue rock fish have become a very rare sight. All the fish there are small ones that haven’t had a chance to grow to full size.

In farther-away places with less boat traffic and less fishing, we still see big schools of small to medium-size blue rockfish. However, the really large ones can only be found in the most inaccessible locations—or in the marine reserve at Point Lobos where they are completely protected. The good news is, reserves work and we’ve added several recently.

3. Can you give an example of what inspires you to actively support marine protected areas?

Photographer Marc Shargel prepares to dive into his work day. Credit: Steven Greenwood

One poster-child species for marine protected areas is the extremely slow-growing yellow-eye rockfish—a strikingly beautiful fish. I was years into my diving career before I caught sight of one. I went out to Point Arena in Mendocino County where this incredible rock comes up from the ocean floor, put on my gear and started down the anchor line. Swimming up the line as if to greet me was my first yellow-eye.

I got to the bottom and it was chock-a-block with them. I’ve never seen a mature one anywhere else. When a suite of marine protected areas along the north central coast went into effect in 2010, that rock and all the life there was protected.

4. Why do marine protected areas around the world draw divers and photographers like you?

We love them, because marine reserves teem with ocean life.  Their robust communities of marine life are more resistant to human impacts and natural disasters. For instance, in the wake of the 2004 tsunami in the Indian Ocean, coral reefs inside a marine protected area in Sri Lanka appear to have been more resilient than other areas where damage was much greater.

5. What kinds of experiences can families enjoy along the California coast?

I’ll tell you a story that took place in front of Cannery Row on Monterey Bay several years ago. I took my nephew out on a two-person kayak through the kelp. We had the good fortune to spot a small group of dolphins quite close to shore. He put on a wetsuit and mask, stuck his face in the water, and got an instant appreciation of the incredible density and diversity of the ecosystem.

The highlight came at the end of the day:  A sea otter. These animals were driven to the brink of extinction a hundred years ago and made a comeback. This one came right by and checked us out.  And then it climbed up onto the boat. For a couple of minutes, there were not two of us on the kayak, but three! That day inspired my nephew to spend the better part of his time in college studying marine biology. For me, he represents the generations to come, the people who will inherit the natural world we’re now stewards for.

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