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Photographer of the Week – Dario Nessi
By Matthew Sullivan, September 7, 2023 @ 06:00 AM (EST)

A humpback whale mother and calf share a moment off Réunion, an island in the Indian Ocean

Do you like big animals? Is marine megafauna your favorite genre of subject matter? If so, our newest Photographer of the Week, Dario Nessi, is the feature you want to see! Dario hails from Switzerland but his passion for big ocean life has led him all over the world, from Scotland to Dominica in the Caribbean to the Brazilian Pantanal.

Dario’s underwater photography journey began about a decade ago. He works as an elementary school teacher but spends all of his free time traveling across the globe on the hunt for the next big animal experience. The rarer and more iconic, the better! Dario shoots exclusively via snorkeling or freediving, as he feels he gets a more natural interaction with his subject than if using scuba.

Dario says that photography was not part of his focus when he first began his underwater adventures, but as many of us can relate to, it wasn’t long before he picked up a camera to capture the experiences he was having and to be able to share those remarkable sights with others. That said, Dario says he still wants to preserve the perspective that the experience should be first and foremost, and the images second. He hopes, through his imagery, to inspire his students and the rest of the next generation to care about and preserve the natural world—and the oceans in particular.

A brown booby has a rest on the back of an olive ridley sea turtle, Baja, Mexico

A group of Pacific spotted dolphins cruises their namesake ocean

A huge “stealth bomber” manta passes through a school of creolefish in the Socorro Islands, Mexico

The basking shark, the second-biggest fish in the sea and one of the goofiest, Scotland, UK

A striped marling hunting down a baitball, Baja, Mexico

A humpback whale escorted by a pod of bottlenose dolphins, Baja, Mexico

Far off the Pacific coast of Baja, a massive school of spinner dolphins has a play, Mexico

The ocean’s alpha predator, the orca, catching a breath at the surface, Baja, Mexico

A sperm whale that almost appears to be laughing while it hangs out upside down, Dominica

A basking shark photobombed by a moon jelly, Scotland, UK

A southern right whale and her calf make a close pass in the murky waters of Patagonia, Argentina

A split shot of the business end of a yacare caiman, Pantanal, Brazil

The biggest snake on Earth, the green anaconda, Pantanal, Brazil

A sperm whale takes a snooze in the deep blue water off Dominica

To view more of Dario’s powerful big animal images, please follow him on Instagram.


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