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How Photographer Cristina Mittermeier Kept Her Cool When Surrounded by Sharks

Cristina Mittermeier
 

By Meredith Carey (Original source CN Traveler)

“Mexico City-born, Vancouver Island-based photographer Cristina Mittermeier didn’t set out to be an award-winning wildlife photographer. She’s a marine biologist by trade. But when an exhibition at the Houston Museum of Natural History included some photos she had taken on her ex-husband’s camera—and credited him—she saw an opportunity.

“I saw the reaction that people had to the photographs, and I thought, ‘Wow, people are more likely to engage in a difficult conversation about our environment thanks to an image than to a scientific paper,'” she says. “If you just engage through science, people that don’t have a scientific understanding or a biology background feel really intimidated entering a conversation where they might not be experts. But we’re all carrying a device in our hands that takes pictures, and that really lowers the price of entry into the conversation.”

It was then that her effort to combine photography and science began, and she has spent the past two decades focusing on images of marine life and coastal regions most affected by climate change. Today, Mittermeier has 1.1 million fans who follow her photography on Instagram, as she documents her travels in Greenland, French Polynesia, Rwanda, and more, and her work with SeaLegacy, a non-profit she founded with partner and photographer Paul Nicklen.”

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