Underwater Photographer Brett Stanley has been working with water for over 10 years, and is still finding creative ways to create images that have a life of their own.
Brett loves being under the water and adding photography to that is just a bonus. His natural calm nature in the water really shows through and helps his clients to feel comfortable, which is the first aim of any underwater shoot.
Whilst based in Los Angeles, USA, the Australian born photographer travels frequently and relishes the chance to work with new people and new locations all over the world.
Always looking to innovate, Brett has built custom equipment and perfected his techniques to make every photoshoot the best it can be.
Brett’s work has been published worldwide and his landmark series Underwater Pole Dance garnered massive attention internationally and was featured in magazines, newspapers, and on TV with Cosmopolitan, Brigitte (Germany), ABC News (USA), Yahoo (Australia), and Telemundo (Mexico) to name a few. He’s also been interviewed by German newspaper Sueddeutsche and photography magazines F11 (New Zealand) and Fotoflock (India).
As an award winning underwater photographer, you’ll always be in good hands.
Every artist has a unique story. Can you briefly walk us through yours?
I started my underwater portrait photography business about 5 years ago after being a photographer for around 10 years. I grew up loving the water and so taking my business below the surface was a logical step for me. In the beginning, I was making my own equipment as I had ideas that no one was making gear for, I still do but I have now invested in some serious underwater camera hardware which helps me create my images.
Just after I started I had some of my images go viral – underwater pole dancers and circus performers – which really brought me in to the spotlight, and since then I’ve been working with people all over the world to teach them how to pose and look amazing underwater, and to create totally unique images for them.
Please tell us about your art.
As an underwater portrait photographer, I feel like my mission is to create the surreal.
Being underwater is so dreamlike, so foreign to many people, that having a portrait taken there is truly magical. I use creative lighting techniques, along with props, sets and outfits to really push the boundaries and take my clients on a magical journey.
An underwater photoshoot with me is more than just sitting in front of a camera and smiling, it’s really about stepping out of your comfort zone into a weightless world where the simplest movements can look amazing.
When people come to my Long Beach Underwater Studio they are guided through breathing exercises and meditation to help them to be comfortable with the water, even if they can’t swim! Our studio pool has a 3ft shallow end which allows me to work with even the most anxious client and a 9ft deep end which is big enough for us to build sets and photograph groups and families.
The important thing to know about my work, and people are surprised when I tell them this after seeing my images, is that most of my subjects are just regular people! They’re not models or have any experience with underwater modeling, they are just everyday people who wanted to try something different. 🙂