Umeed Mistry is a nature lover, photographer, closet writer, scuba instructor and chocolate addict, with a deep and special affinity for the ocean.
Having learned to dive at the age of fifteen he has spent the last twelve years attempting to get as intimate as possible with the ocean and her children. Umeed’s journey into underwater photography began in 2005 while managing a dive centre on the little island of Bangaram in the Arabian Sea. The earlier years spent underwater, observing the movement of light and the behaviour of the magical creatures that inhabit this liquid realm, provided him with an almost instinctual aptitude for photographing life beneath the surface of the sea.
He was awarded the Better Photography Landscape Award for the image titled ‘Sipadan’, and went on to win the Better Photography Photographer of the Year 2007 Award for his panoramic depictions of Bangalore city.
Aside from bringing the beauty of the oceans to homes across India, Umeed uses his images to educate people about the fragility of marine habitats in the Indian Ocean. He has spent the last seven years diving extensively around the Lakshadweep islands in the Arabian Sea, the Andaman Islands in the Bay of Bengal and the numerous islands of Malaysia and Indonesia.
A fish out of water in the metros, he stays connected to nature by creating environmental awareness curriculums, giving talks to school children and creating presentations on sustainability for the Indian Green Building Council. Umeed is happiest with a backpack or scuba tank strapped to his back, his eye looking through the lens of a camera.
The images in this collection have been photographed in the oceans around India and South East Asia, except for ‘Jellyfish’, which was photographed in California.