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AMOS NACHOUM

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President of BigAnimals Expeditions, but first and foremost an explorer and a guide. Over the years, he’s had the honor of leading many great expeditions for individual adventurers, and institutions like Apple, IBM, Microsoft, Discovery Channel, Armani, Disney, Colombia Pictures, and of course, National Geographic, with whom he was team leader for separate photo expeditions to document the Red Sea, Great White Sharks, and Killer Whales.

A photographer, his photos and essays have appeared in hundreds of publications around the globe, including National Geographic, Time, Life, The New York Times, Condé Nast Traveler, Le Figaro, Terra Sauvage, Airone, Mondo Somerso, Der Spiegel, Unterwasser, and many more. His work has also been included in the books The Living Ocean, The World of Nature, and Oceans. He has been profiled in television appearances on National Geographic Explorer, Today, and Good Morning America, as well as featured in People, Esquire, and Money magazines. Amos’s photography has won Nikon, Communication Arts, and BBC Wildlife Photographer of the Year awards.

Above all else, Amos is loves people as much as he does wildlife, and his concern for both inspired him to co-found Israel’s Marine National Park on the Red Sea. His interest in conservation stretches well beyond sharks, and he is always looking to bring attention to the most fragile regions of the underwater realm, with preservation of the environment foremost in his mind. His favorite way to raise awareness and stimulate passion for the ocean is to take guests out to experience it first-hand, but for those not able to join him on his adventures, he uses his camera to bring the oceans to the world. He also enjoys sharing his knowledge of the world with people through public speaking engagements.

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AMANDA COTTON

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Professional Nikon Photographer specializing in underwater imagery. As an avid scuba diver and ocean enthusiast, Amanda’s goal is to help the general public embrace the beauty below the waves, in hopes that with awareness comes concern. The conservation and preservation of this ecosystem is of the highest priority to Amanda. While she enjoys owning and operating a conservation-minded design/media company, A COTTON PHOTO Creative Works LLC, Amanda takes great pride in working with like-minded organizations that genuinely care about the planet and its inhabitants, both above and below the waves.

She received her Bachelor of Arts in Professional Photography while attending Brooks Institute of Photography, where she participated in the highly acclaimed Underseas Program established by Ernie Brooks. Amanda currently works as a correspondent and field editor for Ocean Geographic magazine covering environmental and marine conservation issues.

She has received numerous awards for her photography including several from the International Photographers Awards (IPA), Celebrate The Sea, Underwater Photography Annual Awards, and many others. Amanda is honored to be a Member of The Women Divers Hall of Fame; The Explorers Club; a member of OAS (Ocean Artists Society), NPS (Nikon Professional Services) and PPA (Professional Photographers of America).

Amanda’s imagery has been published in major publications and news sources worldwide including National Geographic, Discovery, Smithsonian Magazine, Times Publishing, CNN, Scuba Diving Magazine, Sport Diver Magazine, Natural History Magazine, Earthweek, and Science Daily; as well as many international dive industry advertising campaigns. Working with organizations such as Scholastic Books, The Conservation Fund, Consortium For Ocean Leadership, Women Diver’s Hall of Fame, Marine Life Protection Act, and Rourke Publishing has allowed her imagery to have a positive impact on the oceans through education and outreach programs designed to improve awareness toward the plight the oceans now face. (click here to see her gallery)

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Ofer Ketter

Ofer “El Oso” Ketter

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OFER “EL OSO” KETTER

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As a certified dive master, submersible pilot and professional globetrotter, Ofer has experienced the world from every angle while visiting over 40 countries and all seven continents. His adventures include documentary filmmaking, circumnavigating the globe aboard a super-yacht, and working as a private travel designer. Another highlight: visiting the Geographic South Pole and Vostok Station, the Russian scientific research center in Antarctica. One of Ofer’s wildest exploits involves solo-piloting a submersible into a flooded volcanic crater in the Galapagos Islands. After serving as a First Lieutenant in the Israeli Defense Forces, Ofer dedicated his entire career to organizing exotic expeditions to some of the earth’s most uncharted reaches. Still on his to do list: learn how to fly a helicopter. While exploring is in his DNA, Ofer finds happiness on Sunday mornings spent at the beach with his family. He’d loved to be remembered as the guy who did everything he was told could not be done and fulfilling his dreams without breaking his principals.

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NATHANIEL SMALLEY

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Nathaniel Smalley is a professional nature photographer based in Phoenix, Arizona. Though he calls the American Southwest his home, he leads photography workshops, tours and expeditions to various international destinations as well. Nature has been the greatest source of inspiration for Nathaniel as long as he can remember. His study of photography began early in high school and he continues to explore the art form to this day. Through his images he strives to foster a real love and respect for the natural world by touching the heart of the viewer with its beauty. Whether sharing his knowledge at a workshop in Arizona or somewhere around the world, Nathaniel’s eagerness to teach and outgoing personality ensures workshop participants a wonderful experience. More than just another nature photographer, Nathaniel is also a passionate conservationist. He has done extensive work with various conservation and rehabilitation organizations over the last two decades, filling every role from a volunteer assisting injured birds and mammals to board member. Nathaniel strives at all times to adhere to the highest standards of ethics in nature photography and avoid any of the cheap shortcuts that could in any way harm his subjects or the environment. For him the natural world is a sanctuary where he captures images of the living world and shares them with those who love and appreciate nature as he does. Visit his website to learn more and view his portfolio.

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NICK LEBEOUF

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Nick LeBeouf With over a decade of experience leading California & Baja expeditions, Nick LeBeouf specializes in safely getting you close to the world’s biggest animals.

Nick has worked with the BBC, Discovery Channel, Outside Magazine, IMAX, national newspapers, and founded a scuba company in San Diego where he holds 20 specialty diver certifications. Nick works with his partner,Kyle McBurnie (Bio below), and in their own words,

“We pride ourselves in our expeditions. With a thorough understanding of our environment and the animals we work with, we can ensure an elite level of safety – both for our guests as well as the animals. We believe an expedition should be more than simply getting close to an amazing animal.

A great expedition should be an enlightening experience – what begins as a sense of wonder and excitement should evolve into an understanding, a respect, and a compassion for the animal.  It is in this transformation that you create for yourself a wholesome experience you won’t be able to forget.”

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