During April and May 2016, we are hosting “Cape Town’s Underwater Wilderness”, an underwater photography exhibition featuring spectacular images, by nine of South Africa’s top photographers, dedicated to the marine world found off the coast of the Western Cape. Eighty of the photos will be sold at R1 000 each and each photographer’s top photo will be offered up on auction. All funds raised will be donated to Shark Spotters and will be used for a shark research project.

John Vowles

John Vowles is an underwater photographer based in Pringle Bay in the Western Cape.

“I have always been a keen participant in what nature has to offer. The ocean is top of the list, as it has relaxing yet educational qualities. My earliest memories are from the water, surfing and just spending ocean-filled days with friends. I owned several boats and spent most of my weekends swimming, surfing and boating. As time went by, I started to wonder about life under the ocean. My partner and I bought a house in Pringle Bay, and this is when I started scuba diving.

“By 2008 I was a seasoned diver, but I wanted to capture what I saw under the water to share with friends and family who couldn’t quite visualise the experiences I tried to explain to them. I also wanted to capture images of my time spent in this wonderful world to refer back to.

“I therefore progressed to underwater photography in 2011 with a little compact by my side. In 2015, I purchased my first DSLR and housing and I have never looked back since.

“Cape Town is one of the few places on earth where you can capture the ocean, vineyards and mountains in one single shot. Our waters house a myriad of fish species and provide an array of different reef kingdoms, beautiful colour variances and jungle-like kelp. Time in the cold waters off our coast provides for interesting and exciting challenges.

“Underwater photography provides divers with an opportunity to present the underwater kingdom to those who will never have the opportunity to experience it themselves. It enables people to understand the complex and fragile nature of our ocean life, motivating them to preserve the beauty of the ocean and its wildlife for generations to come.”

Be sure to check out John's photography, along with the work of eight other photographers when you visit the Aquarium in April and May! If you are interested in purchasing any of the prints, please email members@aquarium.co.za.

The exhibition is co-sponsored by Orms Print Room & Framing, Nauticam and Dive Action.

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