Reef fish hiding from sharks, Fakarava North Lagoon, Tahiti
Requesting an underwater photographer to select their favorite images for this feature often provides them with a difficult task, especially if you have a portfolio as extensive as our latest candidate, Tobias Zimmer. After initially submitting more than 60 shots, we managed to narrow it down to the final 15 you see here, which I’m sure you will agree showcase an awesome collection of wide-angle and macro subjects.
Now living in Cologne, Germany, Tobias has always been an explorer above and below the surface who loves to travel to new countries and experience new cultures. He spent many years in the water surfing the Atlantic Ocean, before eventually learning to scuba dive in Thailand in 2004. While studying to become a photographic engineer, Tobias chose to write his final exam about “The Problems of Underwater Photography in Theory and Practice” and then took a year out to pursue his chosen topic, when he returned to Thailand to improve his diving and photography skills. In 2007 he became a dive instructor, and after finishing his academic studies, started to combine virtual tour productions with photography work to finance his travels to some of the world’s best dive destinations. It wasn’t long before he was in contact with German scuba diving magazines such as Tauchen and Unterwasser, and started producing articles for them with his writer and college, Peter Kaubisch.
If Tobias had to choose his favorite place to dive, it would be the marine protected area surrounding Misool Eco Resort in Raja Ampat, Indonesia, as it is home to some of the most diverse and vibrant coral reefs on the planet. Mantas and elusive macro critters are commonly found at the same dive sites, and many of his best images have been taken there. My personal favorite is the butterflyfish hiding in whip coral, as the contrast in colors and patterns makes for an artistic capture that combines perfectly with his other blue water wide-angle work. Sharks in Tahiti and eagle rays in the Maldives are just some of the other iconic animals he has photographed over the years, and the resulting images remind me, well, just how awesome it is to visit different countries and go diving. Let’s hope for an end to Covid-19 travel restrictions soon, so we can all get back traveling freely and exploring the underwater world again.
A butterflyfish hiding in whip coral, Misool Eco Resort, Indonesia
Sharks are in abundance on every reef in Tahiti
Juvenile pinate batfish, Misool Eco Resort, Indonesia
Eagle rays shot using an underwater scooter, Laviani Atoll, Maldives
Juvenile blacktip sharks, Misool Eco Resort, Indonesia
Squid under torch light, Lembeh Strait, Indonesia
Maroon clownfish in host anemone, Misool Eco Resort, Indonesia
Schooling jacks and diver, Coco Island, Costa Rica
Moray eel at a cleaning station, Alor, Indonesia
Caribbean reef sharks at the surface, Grand Cay, The Bahamas
Juvenile manta ray, Komodo, Indonesia
Nudibranch close-up, Komodo, Indonesia
Manta ray visiting a cleaning station, Misool Eco Resort, Indonesia
Banggai cardinalfish mouth-brooding eggs, Lembeh, Indonesia
Plan Your Adventure >