By Denise Pietsch
If you need some entertainment while wrapping all of those holiday gifts, you've come to the right place. We're back with the fourth installation of our favorite underwater photography podcasts. This time we're diving deep into Marty Snyderman's philosophy on underwater photography and Brian Skerry's origin story, as well as some beginner's advice from Shawn Jackson and a message of conservation from Paul Nicklen and Cristina Mittermeier. Pop in your headphones and let's get inspired.
Above and Below A Salt Life Podcast: Underwater Photography 101 with Shawn Jackson
This is a great podcast episode for any underwater photography beginners. Ikelite Ambassador Shawn Jackson sits down with the host of Above and Below and they discuss Roatan's marine life, how Shawn got into underwater photography, his progression from film to digital cameras, and the insane visibility of Roatan. Shawn offers a ton of great advice for newbies: most importantly that your first focus should be on becoming a good diver, and while you're at it, take a marine life course while you take your scuba courses. If you're looking for camera lens suggestions pay attention to the back half of the episode where Shawn does a run down of his favorite lens for every situation underwater and why strobes are crucial to nailing a shot. Listen here.
The Great Dive Podcast: Trying Again with Underwater Photography
If you're looking to turn your hobby into a dedicated passion, or looking to turn your "snapshots into photographs" look no further than this episode. The hosts of The Great Dive Podcast delve into the underwater photography philosophy of one of the greats, Marty Snyderman. That philosophy? Taking your underwater photos to the next level requires "experience, patience, and the willingness to try again." Hosts Brando and James cover topics like the importance of a pre-dive brief, diving with a shot in mind, knowing your subject and environment, and the photographic advantages to immersing yourself in a specific dive locale versus logging dives all over the world. With a jovial banter and a mastery of knowledge, Brando and James are a fun duo to listen to and learn from.
If you're more of a reader - or just want Marty Snyderman's professional advice around for continued reference - check out his eBook 101 Tips for Underwater Photographers.
PADI Dive Stories: Paul Nicklen & Cristina Mittermeier - Connecting the World with Ocean Conservation
Calling all conservationists! This is the episode for you. Part inspiration, part advice, part biography, Paul Nicklen and Cristina Mittermeier, photographers and Sea Legacy co-founders, share their story on the pilot episode of PADI's Dive Stories podcast. “I’m more than just a diver out trying to take pretty pictures, I’m out here to connect the world. We say that very few people are going to get to see the ocean, and it’s our job to bring the ocean to everyone," Paul Nicklen shares both what got him into underwater photography and what keeps him motivated to keep going. From Paul's story about being immersed in whale song underwater to the couple's insights on building a "bridge of empathy" there's no way you won't be moved by this episode. Cristina shares the importance of building a community when it comes to conservation. Whether it's your social media or an organization like Sea Legacy, sharing the story of the ocean and its in habitants can have wider impacts than you might imagine - it might even help establish environmental protection laws. But you'll have to listen to the full episode to learn more about that.
National Geographic Overheard: The Secret Culture of Killer Whales
What started at iced over quarries diving for car parts eventually became an internationally acclaimed career in underwater photography. Brian Skerry, award winning Nat Geo photojournalist and film producer, sits down with host Peter Gwin to talk origin stories and orca whales. From the time he witnessed orcas mourning the death of a calf to the time he was confronted with his own mortality on a dive trip, this episode is packed with life-affirming insights, adventure, and a deep appreciation for the empathy orcas possess. Peter Gwin shares the environmental factors that are endangering these creatures and Brian Skerry shares the hope that in conveying the intelligence and social nature of orcas we might be able to connect to their story, and, maybe even save them. Listen here.
Has all of this underwater photography talk got you ready to dive into your next adventure? Join Ikelite owners, staff, and Ambassadors for a week of cruising one of our favorite Caribbean locations on one of our favorite liveaboard dive yachts. We’re heading out to shoot the latest gear, capture amazing photo and video, and most importantly enjoy a week of inspiring company.
Denise Pietsch (pronounced “Peach”) currently manages Ikelite’s Photo School and social media presence. Denise hails from New Jersey, where she obtained a degree in Dance Therapy. After years teaching dance she migrated into the corporate world and eventually came around to Ikelite via the natural career path of fruit distribution and early childhood development. In the end, her lifelong love of photography and octopuses combined into the work she does now. In addition to sharing her energy and enthusiasm with the underwater community she also manages social media for her dog, Joe, collects vinyl records, and enjoys creating memories with her friends and family.
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