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Photographer of the Week – Gianni Pecchiar
By Ian Bongso-Seldrup, October 29, 2021 @ 08:00 AM (EST)

Eye of a blenny, Krk, Croatia
 

It’s not every day you get to meet an olm—a blind, flesh-colored, cave-dwelling salamander—from Slovenia. Nor do you often get to see moody underwater caves and atmospheric shipwrecks in Croatia. Yet you’ll find both of these among the works of this week’s Photographer of the Week, Gianni Pecchiar.

You probably also didn’t appreciate that Italians like Gianni that live in Trieste, in the country’s northeast, are a stone’s throw from the Slovenian border. Trieste, let us remind you, was the most prosperous port of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, and is considered the gateway to the Balkans and the countries of the former Yugoslavia—which includes, of course, Slovenia and Croatia.

This corner of Europe has been Gianni’s aquatic playground for more than four decades, and for the warmer months of the year, the veteran underwater photographer spends his free time exploring the islands, caves, and wrecks of the Adriatic Sea. When winter comes around, you’ll find Gianni in more controlled conditions, indulging his other passion: underwater fashion photography. Naturally, both his meticulously choreographed pool shoots and his carefully orchestrated wreck shots invariably involve similarly complex lighting setups using multiple flash units.

The end result is an eclectic portfolio that encourages the viewer to take a closer look—and perhaps also consider investigating Europe’s lesser-known parts and discovering some of its more unusual photographic subjects.
 

Olm salamander (Proteus anguinus), Kompoljska Cave, Jama, Slovenia
 

Snake, Lake Cornino, Italy
 

Cave diving at Katedrala Island, Premuda, Croatia
 

Fischerman wreck, Rijeka, Croatia
 

“Hypnotic Light”: Premantura, Croatia
 

“Vertigo”: Pool shoot, Trieste, Italy
 

“Merilyn”: Pool shoot, Trieste, Italy
 

Jelly and Castle Miramare, Trieste, Italy
 

Michelle wreck off Dugi Otok, Croatia
 

Gianni in action
 

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