Featured Photographers

Featured Underwater Photographer – Taner Atilgan

One of the best ways to learn photography is to see other photographers’ work. We try to find some of the best underwater photographers in the world, and showcase their work, along with the gear they use, to help other aspiring photographers improve, learn new skills and get inspired.

This week we will feature the talented Taner Atilgan!

Taner in the field

About Taner

I was born in 1983 in Mugla/Turkey. Since I had spent all my vacations at our summer house near the seaside, I always had a great relationship with sealife, underwater and snorkelling. After having primary & secondary education at my hometown, I moved to Istanbul in 2001 for undergraduate study and had lived there for 15 years. Recently , my wife and I moved to Eindhoven, the Netherlands due to our professional careers.

As an architect, I have graduated from Istanbul Technical University and since then, I have been involved in large-scale construction projects as a part of project management teams, and still working as a project controls manager. Furthermore, I had worked as a professional musician during undergraduate study, and nowadays, I play with professionals as a hobby.

After performing music as my only hobby for 15 years, I’ve started underwater photography and it has immediately become my primary passion.  Milestones of my scuba career are: Started diving in 2008, started underwater photography in 2011, became a CMAS instructor in 2011, became the national underwater photography champion in 2013&2015, and elected to the Turkish national underwater photograpy team for 2015&2016&2017. I‘ve also been awarded in several international competitions.

I’ve been diving with my wife, Caglar, since 2012 and she takes a huge part in most of my pictures as a model and lighting specialist. Her profession is actually architectural lighting design, and she puts so much effort into making my pictures better. As a newly-wed couple, we look forward to traveling new destinations and represent the underwater life with all its perfection.

Taner’s Gear

  • Nikon D810 & D7200
  • Nauticam System
  • Nikon 105mm VR Macro Lens
  • Tokina 10-17mm Fisheye Lens
  • Zen Ports
  • Ikelite DS-161 Strobes
  • Inon D-2000 Strobes
  • I-Torch Venom 38 Focus Light
  • Subsee +5 Diopter
  • Nauticam SMC-1 Diopter
  • Ultralight & Inon Hardware
  • Retra LSD Snoot

© Taner Atilgan | Moray Eel portrait – Bodrum/Turkey – I won my first international award at underwaterphotography.com annual contest with this snooted moray eel portrait.

© Taner Atilgan | Anemone & the Diver – La Herradura/Spain -This picture had been taken during the competition dives of CMAS Underwater Photography European Championship in 2016. It was very challenging for my wife to stay in front of the sun in that strong current. I used a classic narrow snoot to light the anemone. No double exposure.

© Taner Atilgan | Manta Reflection – Maldives

© Taner Atilgan | Tube Worm – Bodrum/Turkey – I won my first gold medal in national uwp championships with this snooted tube worm. It’s lit with a Retra LSD. The picture has no external post-processing on it, direct JPEG from the camera.

© Taner Atilgan | Anemones & the Diver – Maldives

© Taner Atilgan | Silversides & the Sunset – Kapalai Island/Malaysia

© Taner Atilgan | Turtle on Giannis D – Red Sea/Egypt – It was my first encounter with a turtle back in 2013. It tried to attack his reflection on my dome port and I was able to take a series of nice pictures with the wreck at the background.

© Taner Atilgan | Blenny – Bodrum/Turkey – This tiny blenny is most probably one of the smallest critters I’ve ever pictured. Taken with a Nauticam SMC.

© Taner Atilgan | Diver in the Wreck – Red Sea/Egypt – In 2017, my wife & I decided to experiment on some ideas when we were back in northern Red Sea. This picture is a long exposure shot of a diver exploring a wreck.

© Taner Atilgan | Sealion Puppy – La Paz/Mexico – This picture had been taken during the training dives of CMAS Underwater Photography World Championship in 2017. My wife & I were taking pictures of the sealion colony at Los Islotes and at that moment, one of the puppies brought me this starfish to play.

© Taner Atilgan | Seapen Polyp – Istanbul/Turkey – When I was preparing for the national uwp championship in Turkey, I was trying different approaches for theme category: Sea Pens. So, I shot white sea pen polyps with blue color filter. In conclusion, I won the gold medal for that category. This picture is from training dives. Actually, only one tentacle of the polyp was cut at the original version of the picture, but I cropped other three tentacles in order to achieve a more symmetrical picture.

© Taner Atilgan | Motorcycle – Red Sea/Egypt – There are a lot of versions of this famous motorcycle with backlighting in Thistlegorm. Last year when we went back to northern Red Sea, I wanted to shoot the scenery with addition of a diver and front lighting. Light beams where the front lighting comes are not strong as the shadowy areas, but I think color on the motorcycle also works.

© Taner Atilgan | Gorgonia & the Diver – Maldives

© Taner Atilgan | Tube Worms – Bodrum/Turkey – These two tube worms were shot by a single snoot in order to light only the objects not the wreck piece they are on. So I could have a picture with a nice blue background and less distraction.

© Taner Atilgan | Nurse Sharks – Maldives – While I was snorkelling with nurse sharks at the back of the boat, two of them just had this attracting shape. Since the sharks were not at the same level and farther from me, my strobes were able to light only one shark properly, so the other one appeared greenish in the picture. I loved this unusual contrast, and kept it as the same during post-processing.

Get in Touch with Taner

taneratilganuwp (at) gmail.com

Follow me!

Ran Mor

Sales and Marketing at Mozaik Underwater Cameras
Ran is a professional photographer for over 14 years. His passion for scuba diving and photography has pushed him to combine his profession and hobby and become a professional underwater photographer. Teaching is one of his greatest passions and over the years he has shared his experience with many divers and aspiring photographers. Along with his wife Danielle, an experienced Scuba Instructor, they have founded Dive and More, leading dive trips and UW photo workshops all over the world. Ran is also an electrical engineer and an avid internet marketing specialist.
Visit his personal portfolio at www.ranmorphoto.com.
Ran Mor
Follow me!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Time limit is exhausted. Please reload the CAPTCHA.