Weedy seadragon with sunburst, Flinders, Victoria, Australia
Although I have visited Australia a number of times in the last decade, I never really found the time to dive in the state of Victoria, as catching up with friends and some epic long-distance road trips always prevented me from exploring underwater. After taking one look at Sam Glenn-Smith’s portfolio, I instantly regret that decision and will be sure to never make that same mistake again!
Our latest Photographer of the Week is a local of Mornington Peninsular, a popular tourist and dive destination just an hour south of the capital, Melbourne, and although the water is much colder there than at the Great Barrier Reef and the Coral Sea further north, the underwater photography opportunities are just as good and just as diverse.
Sam has been working in the region as a marine photographer and dive guide for years, and is especially passionate about showcasing the weird and wonderful creatures that lay mere feet below the surface in Victorian waters. All but two of the images here were taken somewhere in the state, and his collection contains an A-list of Aussie critters that every underwater photographer would love to add to their portfolio.
Back when I was visiting this part of the world, I was surprised to learn that blue-ringed octopuses can be found on most shore dives, so I’m sure Sam has many more images of these photogenic animals besides the two excellent ones he included here. Seahorses and other cephalopods are also a common sight under the piers and jetties along the coastline, but undoubtedly the most special subject of them all is the weedy seadragon. This endemic species can only be found in the temperate waters of southern Australia, and Sam has captured this colorful creature and its habitat perfectly—with both wide-angle and macro lenses.
As I have mentioned before, I love to share the work of photographers who spend most of their time diving in one location, as they are most likely to put together an awesome portfolio over time and to help promote diving in the region, and Sam has done just that with Victoria!
Giant Australian cuttlefish, Blairgowrie, Victoria, Australia
Southern keeled octopus in a pipe, Blairgowrie, Victoria, Australia
Sunrise at Sorrento Pier, Victoria, Australia
Juvenile southern blue-ringed octopus, Blairgowrie, Victoria, Australia
Harlequin shrimp, Lembeh, Indonesia
Winged Thecacera nudibranch, Blairgowrie, Victoria, Australia
A pair of shortheaded seahorses, Blairgowrie, Victoria, Australia
Juvenile spiny tiger shrimp, Dauin, Philippines
Weedy seadragon portrait, Flinders, Victoria, Australia
Male weedy seadragon with eggs, Flinders, Victoria, Australia
Spider crabs on a pylon, Rye, Victoria, Australia
Southern blue-ringed octopus with eggs, Blairgowrie, Victoria, Australia
Sam Glenn-Smith in full combat gear!
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