If you were to picture the personality of a photographer who swims out of the cage with great white sharks, dives into pitch-black water with Humboldt squid, and comes face to face with toothy African crocodiles—what would it be?
Probably not anything like that of Daniel Botelho—who has done all of those things and many more. Far from the bold and brassy temperament of your typical thrill-seeking shutterbug, Daniel is best characterized by his humble demeanor and giant grin he sports whenever talking about underwater photography.
A humboldt squid investigates Daniel’s camera setup in the pitch-black waters off Mexico
Daniel’s images of mola molas off the Californian coast quickly went viral in 2012
Daniel strives to show a more peaceful interaction between sharks and humans, like this giant great white
In fact, just by striking up a conversation with Daniel, you probably wouldn’t even know that his images have appeared everywhere from National Geographic and a monthly section in a Walt Disney magazine, to advertising campaigns for Boeing (see his planes and models article). It seems like every month his images go viral on the Internet, à la his mola mola split shots or his out-of-the-cage great white experience. His stories and images of mysterious marine animals in far-flung lands keep a land-locked underwater photographer entertained for hours.
“It is not about the eyes, camera or lenses; I take photos with my heart,” explains Daniel. “I am in love with the subjects I capture and I want to spread that love through my images.”
A snorkler swims beside an oceanic whitetip shark in the waters off Cat Island, Bahamas
Eye spy a tiny pygmy seahorse!
Daniel photographs endangered southern right whales off the coast of South Africa
Who says unicorns don’t exist? Here narwhals go zipping past in the frigid arctic waters
Water landing: A plane lands over the head of a model as part of an advertising campaign for Boeing
One of the last swimming elephants paddles in front of Daniel’s lens
Daniel specializes in fast-paced, big-animal photography, like these hunting sailfish in Isla Mujeres, Mexico
A toothy croc smiles for Daniel in Botswana’s Okavango Delta
A starfish sits just below the surface of a picturesque island
A shark cuts its way through a bait ball during South Africa’s sardine run
Daniel Botelho braving the Arctic chill
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