Have you ever wondered what it is like to be in a cage, 30-feet below the surface, surrounded by several great white sharks? Sharing the water with these enormous, graceful, and yet beautifully terrifying creatures has so far been the highlight of my photography career, not to mention a huge check off of the bucket list.
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Watch the Video
As a complement to my recent article about photographing the great white sharks of Guadalupe Island, I put together a I put together a short video of slow-motion footage during my trip from 2016 aboard the Nautilus Belle Amie, and set it all to some hauntingly creepy music by Myuuji. So crank up the volume, click the full-screen icon on the video player, and enjoy!
Creating this video
To make this video I attached a GoPro camera to the top of my camera housing dome, and each time I went in the cage I turned it on and let it do its thing. Because of this I had HOURS of uncut footage, and culling it was an experience! I got to re-live my adventure, see some things I missed the first time around, and also pat myself on the back for thinking ahead and recording everything at 120 fps. The GoPro footage during this trip was secondary, as I was entirely focused on getting still photographs. So most of it was shaky, moving up and down to compose differently for each scene, but I only needed a second or two of non-shaky video to create several seconds of slow-motion video at 30 fps.
Here is the camera gear and other settings I used to make this movie:
• Camera: GoPro HERO4 Black
• Footage: Recorded at 120 fps (slow motion), slowed to 30 fps for final production
• Music: “Poltergeist” by Myuuji
• Camera: Canon 5D Mark III
• Lens: Canon 15mm fisheye
• Housing: Nauticam NA-5DSR
Click here to read more about photographing great white sharks in Guadalupe Island, Mexico.
Canon 5D Mark III with 15mm fisheye lens and Nauticam NA-5DSR housing. © Nicole S. Young — nicolesy.com
Support the Sharks
My goal in this project is not to reinforce or the idea that sharks are dangerous. Because of their size, great whites can be scary, yes, but also elegant and, overall, not aggressive. While I would not swim open water with great whites, I have and would again happily share the waters alongside many other shark species.
Sharks are an essential part of our ecosystem, and need to be protected. If you would like to donate to the scientific shark-identifaction and ongoing research in the Guadalupe Islands, please consider donating to the Marine Conservative Science Institute.