Picture strip as well as all photographs separately with additional information on the different subjects. Photo series: Waves of energy.
The underwater world isn’t only full of strange creatures but offers lots of colours, patterns and shapes which are captivating in themselves. I love ordinary subjects, often overlooked by underwater photographers on the search for special creatures (more on this topic in Art by nature).
The protected and thriving reefs around Wakatobi (Indonesia) were perfect for experimenting and developing this photo series called “Waves of energy” (Take a minute: The coral reefs of Wakatobi). Follow the waves of energy through the ocean into the sky and back into the water. Feel the vibes, meet the protagonists, get energised and connect to the world!
Going like waves through the ocean the frequency of particles and light vibrates through space and time to allow the improbable in our universe.
On the same wavelength
There is more to the story than just pretty patterns and colours and one sentence to line them up. Discover the single parts of the photo series „Waves of energy“ and learn more about each subject.
Going like waves
The first picture shows a close-up of a giant clam (genus Tridacna), one of the most endangered types of clams. With an average lifespan of over 100 years, they can grow up to more than 200 kilograms and 120 cm across. They combine different methods to obtain food: Like most corals, some anemones and such, clams get the majority of their energy from symbiotic algae living within their cells doing photosynthesis. The clam provides the nutrients necessary to convert sunlight and carbon dioxide into food/energy as well as a safe place to live for the algae (see picture 6 for more info). In addition, they are filter feeders.
through the ocean
The second picture shows a close-up of a so-called spiny oyster (family Spondylidae) which, in fact, isn’t a true oyster. They cement themselves into the reef and are filter feeders. Though abundant on the reefs of Wakatobi they are tricky to point out or photograph as they have a series of eyes around the edges of their mantle, like little pearls, which are sensitive to changes in light. When you come close, shine a light or do sudden movements, the oyster feels threatened and closes.
the frequency of particles
The third picture shows a close-up of the arm of a crinoid, also called feather stars (class Crinoidea). These creatures are often mistaken for plants until they start moving their arms and swim gracefully to settle in a different spot on the reef. The arms have feathery pinnules to catch planktonic particles and transport them towards the mouth in the centre of the crinoid. As relatives to sea stars, they show fivefold symmetry though in most crinoids the arms are divided into ten or more.
and light vibrates
The fourth picture highlights the link to the sunlit world above the waves, to the sky and to the universe beyond. We all love watching sunsets and cloud formations but – for photography and in life – we tend to keep the horizon in sight and things straight. Changing our point of view as well as the whole way how we perceive and interpret what we see, think and feel, can be tremendously valuable for our personal development. Furthermore, it might turn out most valuable for protecting nature and the world we are living in. In the end, everything is connected through energy.
through space and time
The fifth picture is again an underwater close-up, this time showing a tube worm, known as feather dusters (family Sabellidae). Sabellids live in long tubes constructed of mud or sand cemented by mucus and their common name refers to the multicoloured crown of finely divided tentacles. Feather dusters spread their tentacles to feed and breathe but quickly retract them at the first sign of danger. They start off in a free-living, microscopic larval stage that disperses from the parental site and metamorphoses into their adult form when settling on the reef.
to allow the improbable
The sixth picture shows an underwater close-up of the polyps of a soft coral (family Dendronephthya). Soft corals, same as hard corals, are colonial organisms, meaning they are formed of colonies of polyps which are all genetically identical. Soft coral can be identified by eight arms with feathery tentacles used to catch floating plankton while hard corals have six arms or a multiple of six. Both provide shelter for the algae zooxanthellae (see 1) which not just provides energy in return but is also producing brilliant colours. Multiple environmental factors such as water temperature can throw off the balance, eventually forcing the coral to expel the algae – and turn white (coral bleaching).
in our universe.
The seventh picture is yet another underwater close-up, this one focuses on the form and texture of a sponge (genus Callyspongia). Sponges are multicellular organisms with bodies full of pores and channels allowing water to circulate through them. These filter feeders are often called primitive life forms, even though they are very successful. After all, they have been around for 580 million years. On top of that, their unspecialised cells can transform into other types of cells – whatever is needed for the sponge at that point.