Humpback Whale photographs are the speciality of nature photographer Craig Parry. Heading to Tonga each year to document their migration, his images consistently depict the beauty and grace of these gentle giants. Recently we caught up with ‘Wired’ to talk about the experience.

Read on to get the scoop: 

IT MAY SEEM obvious, but whales are huge. Take the humpback, for example. They’ll reach 52 feet and almost 40 tons. Nature photographer Craig Parry has spent a lot of time capturing these gentle giants, and last year he finally snapped his “dream photo.”

Parry traveled to Tonga, a Polynesian kingdom of more than 170 islands about 1,400 miles north of New Zealand. He heard that it wasn’t uncommon for visitors to enjoy close encounters with Megaptera novaeangliae, and it would be an understatement to say he was excited. “After years of visualising this ‘under and over’ image I finally had the chance to capture it,” Parry says.

“Over and under” is just what it sounds like: an image that is partially above water and partially below. To achieve such a photo, photographers usually shoot with an extremely wide lens and a narrow aperture for maximum depth of field. They also tend to use a watertight housing to protect their equipment. In this case, Parry’s Canon 1DX and 14mm f2.8 were snug and warm in his Aquatech Water housing…………

Read the full story from WIRED here.

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