Photographer Brett Stanley has teamed up with a group of Cosplay stars to shoot some incredible underwater photographs.
Cosplay artists enjoy dressing up and taking on a fantasy persona, most of which are based on animated TV shows, pop culture or their own imagination. It is the mystical and magical nature of their outfits that makes them the ideal subjects for Brett’s dreamlike photography.
So how did Brett first get into underwater photography?
He explains, ‘I’ve been into the water since I was a kid. I was a water baby growing up – I was always in the water as we had a backyard pool. And if I wasn’t in that, I was in the ocean!’
‘When I grew up and became a photographer it was marrying the two together and it was perfect.
‘It’s that unbelievable freeness of being underwater that is going to give you some amazing photos.’
As you can probably imagine, taking underwater snaps is a lot tougher than taking them on dry land, and there are plenty of elements that Brett needs to consider before each shoot.
He says, ‘for me, taking a good photo as opposed to an average photo comes down to a few things. Like the model – making sure that they believe in what they’re doing. If they are showing fear or if they’re not comfortable that really shows through. Making them look comfortable is half the job of making a believable photo.’
‘Lighting is everything. Getting it to look the way I want and to not look natural. I think for me, I like the surrealness and I like making the scene look dream like.’
But despite this, Brett insists that he doesn’t always have a specific vision in mind when he starts a photoshoot.
He explains, ‘there’s not many of my shoots that I go in with an actual story in mind. A lot of it is a collaboration with the model and perhaps the designer or the stylist and the make-up artist. I feel like it all comes together once we hit the water.’
Well it certainly works! Watch the video above to watch one of Brett’s mesmerising photo shoots in action!