Byron Bay photographer Craig Parry is no stranger to winning awards for his extraordinary nature shots. This year it was his stunningly intimate snap of white humpback whale Migaloo – titled ‘The Ghost’ – which wowed the judges and beat out more than 80 other entries to nab first place in the Underwater Category of Russia’s prestigious Golden Turtle awards. We were excited to learn more about the adventurous shooter.
From being given a camera at such a young age by your parents to being fortunate enough to grow up in an area so rich with natural beauty, it almost seems like the universe was pushing you to nature photography from day dot. Has any other career ever appealed to you?
It has always been about photography for me. If I wasn’t fortunate enough to be pursuing my dream now, I’d like to think my career would be something with animals – like a vet.
Can you tell us about an image captured by another photographer which has always stayed with you?
David Doublet’s photo of a shallow coral reef in Kimbe Bay (Papua New Guinea). This image inspired me to push the boundaries of my own Under & Over photographs and therefore really pushed me to find my own style.
What are some places that you dream of photographing but haven’t made it to yet?
Baha Mexico to photograph the diverse marine species found there, the Bahamas to photograph the bottle nose dolphins and Antarctica for pretty much everything it has to offer!
For the rest of your life, if you could only shoot under water, or on land, which would you choose and why?
I’d choose water, as it feels like an undiscovered landscape full of so much beauty and life.
In your opinion what is the best photograph you have ever taken?
I’d say ‘Emergence’ – I visualised this picture before my departure to Tonga, setting out with the mission to make it a reality. I was fortunate that all the stars aligned and I was able to perfectly capture this magnificent humpback whale as it danced and spy hopped for my camera.
What’s on the agenda for 2018?
In 2018 I’ll be running lots of photography workshops – with three scheduled to Tonga to teach students the art of photographing humpback whales, another scheduled for Botswana to photograph the Big Five and some Byron Bay Oceanic workshops for good measure! I’m also planning trips to Lady Elliott Island and Hawaii amongst many other destinations to gather new content!
Visit craigparryphotography.com to check out more of Craig’s incredible work.