Greetings and welcome to my photography portfolio! My name is John Rawlings, Pacific Northwest underwater photographer and Chief Staff Writer/Photojournalist for Advanced Diver Magazine.

I was born and raised in the Pacific Northwest, and spent much of my childhood alongside my dad, an avid fisherman, gazing down into the emerald green waters of Puget Sound wondering what really lay beneath the surface. Like thousands of other kids in my generation, I found myself "glued to the television" when episodes of "Seahunt" and "the "Undersea World of Jacques Cousteau" aired. I finally learned to dive in the mid-1970s while still on active duty in the US Army, and it wasn't long before I developed a burning desire to photograph the many colorful animals and scenes I regularly saw while diving so that I could share my wonder with my "topside friends", who always seemed to ask the perennial question: “what do you see down there?”.

I have now been shooting underwater for over 30 years, with the majority of my dives being in my home waters of the Pacific Northwest. I started underwater photography with a used Nikonos II and a dented flash-bulb system. As a self-taught photographer I found it a challenge to find the best methods to photograph the underwater creatures and sights of Puget Sound, the Strait of Juan de Fuca, and British Columbia. Regularly having to deal with typical Northwest low light and poor visibility, these conditions have contributed much to the way that I shoot photos to this day. In the early days I would stumble out of the water onto a rocky beach with an old breadbag full of used flash-bulbs lashed to my weight belt and a "wee bit" more knowledge about Pacific Northwest underwater photography bouncing around inside my head. Like every other underwater photographer in those days, I tossed out far more slides than I kept!

The Pacific Northwest, particularly Washington and British Columbia, offers underwater photographers absolutely amazing opportunities to capture images rarely, if ever, seen anywhere else on Earth. On this website I have collected a variety of wide-angle, close-up and macro images that I feel reflect the raw beauty of our area.

Please feel free to browse through my images. It is my earnest hope that you will enjoy viewing them as much as I enjoyed creating them.

John Rawlings
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