“I believe in the power of imagery to motivate stewardship and protection of the fragile underwater world. It is equally important to connect with the indigenouspeoples of the world – man is, in fact, a part of nature.” ~ Michele Westmorland

Michele Westmorland, underwater photographer, dive tourism, marine conservation, ocean issues, sustainable divingMichele Westmorland is a prolific underwater photographer and well-respected member of the International League of Conservation Photographers. Her years of diving and leading dive tourism groups all over the world have made her an active proponent of marine conservation issues and marine education. Michele has to admit it’s getting harder and harder to take a pristine reef photo that magazines will want to print. “How do we tell divers the reefs are in peril when we don’t show the true story?”

 

“Our Coral Reefs are in Peril”

 

Michele has created a vast library of imagery from around the world and is especially passionate about ocean issues and sustainable diving. Her underwater and cultural photography has gained international recognition. Michele understands the need to tell a visual story, whether it covers exotic locations or the wonders of the natural world. Her photo book “Ocean Duets” was published in 2006 and is focused on the beauty of the underwater world.

She is also a Fellow of the prestigious Explorers Club, a member of the Society of Woman Geographers, Wings World Quest, ASPP, NANPA and was inducted into the Woman Divers Hall of Fame in 2011. Much of her imagery has appeared in national and international publications. Michele has won several awards for her photos including, Grand Prize in the Papua New Guinea Underwater category, the Environmental Photography Invitational, Photo District News, and many others. She is proud to be included in the book “Adventurous Dreams-Adventurous Lives” by Jason Schoonover. As a speaker, Michele has given a variety of lectures on our need to save the ocean environment and marine life photography workshops.

Michele is especially proud of a documentary film and book project, Headhunt Revisited, which is currently in post-production.

“I have had the privilege of photographing marine life since 1984. Each dive gave me new and dramatic experiences. From the tiny creatures that hide in the coral to magnificent marine mammals that give our world balance, it is an environment where new discoveries are made every day.

 

“art can connect people across oceans and decades”

 

“Whether it’s marine life photography and the beauty of cultural photography or oil on canvas, art can connect people across oceans and decades, and it can tell stories and remind people of how delicate our Earth is in so many ways.”

To be part of Michele Westmorland’s entire interview join us at Blue Ocean Summit 2015: Michele Westmorland and find out more about Michele’s career as an underwater photographer and view Michele Westmorland’s beautiful marine life images. To support the Blue Ocean community and to order Michele Westmorland’s book Ocean Duets or see her profile in Adventurous Dreams-Adventurous Lives find them at the Store.

Another of our creative people Jim Toomey is a very funny guy addressing some very unfunny issues and in the process making us laugh. What does a syndicated cartoon strip have to do with the UN? Creator of Sherman’s Lagoon, Jim Toomey has stepped away from his drawing board and gone in front of the camera for the UN. His ability to explain complex issues with entertaining illustrations propelled a UNEP project to explain ocean issues to regular people in just 2 minutes. Go to Jim’s article at Ocean Profiles: Jim Toomey to find out what he has to say about keeping the political argument out of ocean stewardship.