Atlantic longarm octopus finds a hiding spot in a bottle at the Blue Heron Bridge, FL
It’s only natural for Eric Riesch to get a little envious of other underwater photographers. For the last 25 years, Eric has worked behind the scenes on the famed Fish ID books. Starting out as Marketing Director and then moving up the ranks to Photo Editor, the current Managing Director for New World Publications spends his days sorting through images of newly discovered critters, rare behaviors, and pristine underwater environments. But as it turns out, Eric’s own underwater images are just as enviable.
Nearly two decades ago, Eric jumped into underwater photography—using an old housing system he affectionately nicknamed the “sea anchor.” It doesn’t hurt that Eric had a close-up look at two of the best in the business: Ned DeLoach and Paul Humann. The duo of underwater naturalists passed along advice on topics spanning O-ring maintenance to patience while observing an animal. “I am continually grateful for the invaluable opportunity to learn from two of the best marine life identification and fish behavior photographers in the world,” says Riesch, who works closely with DeLoach and Humann at New World Publications.
The result of Eric’s evolution as an underwater photographer are images that blend the creative aspects of fine art with a scientific discipline—as many are used for animal identification. Eric has even passed along much of his accrued knowledge to the next generation of aspiring photographers and naturalists through his hit articles in DPG’s “Critter Corner” series.
Eel den with white-eyed morays and fine-speckled morays in Lembeh Strait, Indonesia
Tessellated blenny (one of Eric’s favorite blennies in the Caribbean) found in Bonaire
Christmas tree worms with a spinyhead blenny among them. Eric loves to end a dive searching the shallow water for photo opportunities
A pair of butter hamlets mating at Buddy dive site in Bonaire. Hamlets are simultaneous hermaphrodites, meaning they are both male and female at the same time. They take turns exchanging roles during mating
Male gulf signal blenny in full display, Baja, Mexico
Tiger grouper getting a good cleaning in Bonaire. Its mouth and gills are opened wide to get cleaned by Spanish hogfish and yellownose gobies
Pygmy seahorse in Puerto Galera, Philippines, about a half-inch in size
Female ruby brittle star releasing eggs, Bonaire
Mating pair of nudibranchs (Nebrothe lineolata) in Puerto Galera, Philippines
Eric hauling his camera gear around to Bonaire’s best dive sites his favorite way—via pickup truck
More of Eric’s impressive photos can be seen at www.rieschphoto.com and on his Instagram page.
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