This is footage from a shoot I went on in 2008. The Gulf of Tadjoura in Djibouti plays host to large gatherings of juvenile whale sharks from December through to March. Before the trip we’d heard rumours of the whale sharks being attracted to the lights of dive boats and fishing boats at night, so for the shoot I went armed with a powerful 1000 watt HMI light. We suspended this light from the back of the dive boat we were living aboard shortly after the sun went down. Very quickly this attracted large amounts of plankton, in turn attracting the whale sharks that feed on the plankton voraciously.

This shoot was quite a challenge technically and logistically. One of my underwater housings failed on me on the first day of shooting and I had to have another flown in to allow me to carry on shooting. I’d only taken one housing system with me as I was trying to save money on excess baggage – sorting this issue out turned out to be a lot more expensive and challenging than just taking two housings in the first place – a good lesson learned.

Topside and underwater both shot on Sony F-900R, in Amphibicam housing (where applicable). Lighting was from a Kobold 1000 watt HMI.

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