Images change the way we see the oceans

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Grambeau plans to expand the series with images of small islands in the Pacific and Indian Ocean threatened by rising sea levels. “Using art to raise awareness about climate change gives people time to take a break and think about it, ”he said. “Documentaries can be full of facts and figures. Art is a more slowly digested form of engagement. My goal is to raise awareness of the gravity of the situation with climate change and the silent rise in our level. of the sea.”

The more people are inspired by photography to think about the climate and our planet, the better. “It’s a pivotal moment in time,” Skerry says. “Many of the goals of COP26 are lofty goals: to secure global net zero by mid-century and keep a degree within reach. I would also like to see them protect communities and natural habitats. We are seeing massive extinctions and loss of biodiversity. . The ocean dies from a thousand cuts. I would like to see a commitment to protect 30% of Earth’s natural habitats by 2030, including the oceans. “

“Climate stability can be achieved by conserving the oceans,” he adds. “We know that marine protected areas mitigate climate damage – the ocean is the greatest carbon sink on Earth. The time for discussions and false commitments is over. We need to take serious action and we need to do it now. “

Creating photos that spark action and lead to change is a motivation that unites many photographers. What is striking is how different their methods are to elicit a response from viewers; the work of Beltrá and Grambeau, for example, is poles apart in style and subject. Photography, like any art form, is incredibly personal, each photographer’s choice of subject, when and where to press the shutter, and their creative approach (composition, use of light, exposure time …) theirs. are clean. As these photographers demonstrate, there are many ways to communicate with people, from close-ups of sea creatures, to glimpses of landscapes, to glimpses of the lives of those affected by flooding or the sea. fires, or hard-hitting journalism with thought-provoking summaries. Support for urgent action on climate change from people around the world suggests that these many and varied photos are helping to make an impact.

It often means reaching people on an emotional level, and not just with brutal truths and hard-hitting portrayals of death and destruction. Mittermeier is determined to show people the “beauty and majesty” of the natural world. Images of her, Skerry and other nature photographers take viewers to secluded, wintry wilderness or deep underwater worlds few will have the opportunity to see in their lifetime. , allowing us to experience the remarkable creatures with whom we share the planet up close. Photos of healthy tropical coral gardens filled with colorful fish or a spectacular gathering of giant whales remind us of the beauty, diversity and wonders of the natural world, a world worth protecting.

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