Model Tied Down In Underwater Cave with Sharks Creates Stunning Imagery
World-renowned photographer and visual engineer Benjamin Von Wong has done it again. His breathtaking, inspiring photography has taken yet another step and this time for a great cause. According to Von Wong, this is the hardest shoot he has ever pulled off, and one he hopes has the biggest impact.
Fiji, known for its world-class diving, is now known for its world-class portraits taken by Von Wong. In his video, he takes you behind the scenes on how he captured seemingly impossible portraits. After trying to find a dive shop who would help him capture his imagination, he finally teamed up with a tourist dive shop in Fiji and a full team of divers. Here’s the breakdown in Von Wong’s words:
In addition to the standard complications of shooting underwater — limited oxygen, complex communication, specialized equipment, and experienced divers — we only had a tiny two-hour window every day, between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m., where the sharks would be active and light rays visible.
For each and every shot we would weigh down Amber Bourke, our champion freediver, onto the perfectly lit rock formation where light was falling. The ethereal white dress, designed specifically for this shoot by Ali Charisma, would have to be carefully placed so that it would flow beautifully into the image. When all was finally in position, we would hand over the three-piece plastic shepherds crook to amber and begin the wait.
During their shoot, they would hug the cave walls and try not make sudden movements to spook the sharks. Once a shark entered the cave, the model would rip off her mask and pose as long as she could.
Not only was this an amazing shoot, but it was also for a great cause. He has created a petition calling for the creation of shark sanctuaries in order to protect this species. According to Von Wong, 90 percent sharks in the ocean have been killed in the last century; 100 million sharks the last year for their popular delicacy, shark fin soup. As someone who grew up fishing the waters of the Gulf of Mexico, I agree with Von Wong that sharks are one of the most misunderstood creatures in the world, they are actually very timid creatures that are vital to ocean’s ecosystem.
To view Von Wong’s amazing work, check out his website.
All images used with permission.
[via Von Wong]