Saturday, November 13, 2010

When the weather doesn't cooperate...

We've had a rough week of snorkeling in Grand Cayman. First it was the wind, then it was the chop. The waves at the sandbar were over Terry's head (and he's 6 ft) so, you know I was doing a lot of bobbing up and down!

Then there's the silt. It can really ruin a good picture. Makes the subject look like it's behind dirty glass.

And, things seem to be heading in the wrong direction for some of the reefs that used to be very healthy. The new growth in front of the Tortuga Club has disappeared. We did relocate a spot in front of the Grand that has lots of healthy soft corals, but no fish! This used to be a great place to see spotted eagle rays, but not this year.

The biggest disappointment was Cemetery Reef. Very little live coral. Algae everywhere. No sponges. Very few fish other than sargent majors and Bermuda chubs. No creatures either.

Still we did get some good stingray and moral eel photos, so it wasn't a complete bust. I'll be posting more about those, once they are ready for prime time!

Monday, November 1, 2010

Purple Lace

This is another lovely photo taken by Terry in Belize. He timed it with the waves to show off the beauty of creatures as common as a colony of purple fan coral (gorgonian). This coral is very healthy with no signs of bleaching or algae. I think its a great reminder of why we need to do everything we can to save the oceans coral reefs. Snorklers and scuba divers throughout the Carribean should always be able to enjoy seas full of waving fan corals while searching for more exotic sea life.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Feather Duster and Friends

I took this photo in 2008 in Belize. This is one of my favorite photos because it really seems like you're seeing through the eyes of a fish in the school. And, major's a picture of a feather duster worm! Slippery dicks are not a rare fish, but most snorkelers don't see them this close up. Same with the fairy basslet. Just wish I'd had a better camera when I took this. Hopefully, I can make up for that on our next snorkeling trip.

This photo also translates well to our art-accessories (ornaments, coasters, keepsake boxes) which can be found at

Friday, September 17, 2010

Perfect Camo

Terry took this picture in the British Virgin Islands with a 5 meg Sealife camera. The critter who is trying to blend into the encrusting coral is a trumpet fish. Most divers and snorklers see trumpet fish at the surface of the water. And, you can often spot them from the shoreline. So, it was unusual to find this one on the sea floor. I think a closer crop would show case his camo even more, but unfortunately that's not really an option with only 5 megs to work with. Let's hope we find one of his friends on our next snorkeling trip!
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Tuesday, August 31, 2010


I took this photo in Bocas del Toro, Panama. I like it because it works on both macro and micro levels, which is unusual for a photo taken while snoreling. The overall photo shows a huge colony of coral. But, if you look more closely you start to see all the creatures that call this colony home. The magenta split crown feather duster worms are the first creatures to catch your eye. Then you start to notice the light blue encrusing sponge. Take a closer look and you'll see the flame clams behind the worms, the slippery dicks or the very young rock beauties. This picture is just teaming with sea life!

Limited edition prints of this photo (and other photos from HSWT Photography) are available on Artware by HSWT Photography is available from CafePress. And, you can join us on facebook. :)

Tuesday, August 17, 2010


I've thought many things about underwater photography: it's beautiful, it's interesting, it makes me want to go snorkeling asap. But, I've never really thought "it's fun!". This picture changed all that. Everytime I look at it, it makes me laugh. How can this orange blob with black spots be an animal? And, one that lives underwater?!! Sea cucumbers are just funny. Where is their mouth? Where are their eyes? What do they do in their spare time? Answer: clean up the bottom of the ocean. How cool!

Terry took this picture in the Bocas del Toro region of Panama. You can see a bit of the cool blue sponges that grow in Spot's home waters at the top of the photo. The funny thing about the water in this area is that it doesn't have that carribbean blue look from above, but it is just as clear as the waters in the Carribbean and covers the most dazzeling array of underwater colors I've ever seen.

As always, you can order limited edition prints of this or our other photos from Panama (and other locales) from, by searching for HSWT Photography. Or order artware at And, of coarse you can follow us on Facebook! :)

Sunday, August 8, 2010

My Favorite Southern Sting Ray Photo

Terry took this stunning picture of a female southern string ray on our trip to Belize in 2008. I think the detail is amazing. You can almost see the velvety texture of her skin. The scars on her face appear to be from to propeller of a boat. Luckily, for us you survived her prior encounter with humans.

We love snorkeling with sting rays. They are so friendly (especially if you have squid) and seem to really enjoy interacting with people. The hard part is getting far enough away to fit the entire ray in the shot. Terry is better at that than I am. I'd rather interact with the rays, than photograph them. ;)

This limited edition photo is available for purchase thru or at Gallery 26 in Easton, MD.

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