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Vijay Raman: Passionate BHS Photographer

Vijay Raman: Passionate BHS Photographer

Photographing one of Raja’s legendary drop-offs

My love of the ocean started at a very young age. As early as age 5, I was drawn to the adventures of explorers such as Jacques Yves Cousteau and dreamed of joining in on expeditions aboard the Calypso. At age 21, I completed my SCUBA certification and embarked on the first of many adventures of my own. Over the years I have had the opportunity to dive reefs near and far, from the offshore waters of Southern California to remote locales in the Caribbean, Sea of Cortez, Indian and Pacific Oceans. My favorite diving is in the lush and diverse reefs of the Indo-Pacific, especially Raja Ampat and the Bird’s Head Seascape.

Pygmy Seahorse

In 1995, I bought my first underwater camera, a Sea and Sea Motormarine IIEX and made my first trip to the Indo-Pacific, to a tiny island called Sipadan, off the northeast coast of Borneo. It was an experience that truly changed my life and sparked my passion to photograph and film the beauty and wonders of the undersea world… and to share those wonders with those around me. Since then, I have traveled to various remote locations to capture images of rare and beautiful marine life.

Schooling Fusiliers

Underwater photography requires the honing of several skills. Proper control of light, motion, buoyancy, awareness of surroundings, knowledge of habitat and behavior and a healthy dose of patience are required to get the shot, without disturbing the natural environment. I enjoy the challenges that underwater photography brings and continually strive to master these skills in bringing forth my images. I also enjoy topside photography to include wildlife, landscapes and capturing people and their culture, in my images.

Mantis Shrimp

It is my hope, that by sharing my view of the ocean, that I may inspire others to seek out, to explore and discover, in their own way, the beauty and wonders within the seas… and to ultimately see the importance and urgency of protecting our fragile oceans. It is no longer the infinite resource we once believed.

Manta Ray at Cleaning Station

Wobbegong Shark, one of the Bird’s Head’s iconic species and Vijay’s cover image

I use Nikon camera’s with Nikon and Tokina lenses. I currently shoot underwater with Nauticam housing and ports, Ultralight Control System arms and Sea and Sea strobes. Editing is done on Mac computers, with various software, to include Lightroom and Photoshop Creative Cloud. Dive gear includes Atomic Aquatics, Zeagle, Oceanic and various wetsuits by Xcel, O’Neill, Body Glove and Pinnacle.

Vivay, on a recent trip!


Long Beach-based photojournalist Vijay Raman has been traveling to Indonesia’s Raja Ampat (and the Bird’s Head Seascape) since 2008!  We are delighted to share his images with all of you.  To view more of his images visit his website, Vijay Raman.
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