Ocean Art 2023 - 2nd Place Macro

2nd Place Macro

Byron Conroy

"Pygmy poser"



Byron Conroy won a 7-night liveaboard dive trip aboard the Bilikiki in the Solomon Islands!


The Story: 

I have photographed pygmy sea horses for many years, there are a few challenges to shooting them, first the eye contact. To have a relaxed specimen making double eye contact with the camera is very rare, secondly the polyps of the coral are usually closed. In order to get the polyps out I had to be the first person on this sea fan in the morning, I already knew this was a playful specimen from the day before so requested to dive the site at dawn when the polyps were out. And this guy is also pregnant and about to burst, so this trifecta of eye contact, polyps out and pregnant male made it the shot I have been after for many years. There was minimal editing, a little contrast, a slight rotation and very minimal crop were all that was needed, the subject speaks for itself.


Lembeh Strait, Indonesia

Equipment Used: 

Camera Settings: 

  • Aperture: F14
  • Shutter Speed: 1/125
  • ISO: 160



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