‘Cephalotography’ Of The Week: Tobias Zimmer

Howdy Nation! In today’s post, we are going to be featuring some of our favorite cephalotography by underwater diver: Tobias Zimmer. Tobias is a talented photographer with an impressive portfolio that takes him all over the world to some of the most beautiful places on Earth. But what we really love about his work is the way he captures the octopus. Let’s take a look!

Meet Tobias Zimmer!

Living in Cologne, Germany, Tobias is known for his wide-ranging and artistic portfolio of underwater images.

Before he started diving, he spent a lot of time at the coastlines of the Atlantic from France to Marocco to go surfing. To learn how to dive was already a dream of his.

In 2004, he had my first diving class in Phuket, Thailand with Seabees… and he fell in love!

He became a dive instructor in 2006 and after getting his degree in engineering, he started to combine photography and the production of virtual tours to get around the world and in the water as much as possible.

Soon after, he produced articles for the German dive magazines, #Tauchen, #UNTERWASSER, and #SilentWorld together with his colleague Peter Kaubisch.

And that’s just the start. There’s much more to come from this very talented, German-based underwater photographer!

Let’s find out.

How long have you been an underwater photographer? 

“I’ve been an underwater photographer for about 15 years now. I absolutely love it! It’s such a unique and beautiful environment to photograph in.”

Where do you mainly dive and take underwater photos? How often do you go? 

“I mainly dive in Indonesia, but I’ve also had the opportunity to dive in other places all over the world. I try to go diving as often as I can, but it definitely depends on work and life commitments. Sometimes I can go diving a few times a week, and other times it might only be once every few months.”

How long do you dive for? Do you normally go alone? 

“Depending on the day, I usually dive for around an hour or so. Sometimes, shorter or longer. I generally don’t go diving alone, as it’s always nice to have a buddy when you’re underwater. Plus, it’s safer that way!”

Are you known for having a certain type of style when it comes to your photos? How do you capture the creature that is in front of the camera just the way you want? 

“I definitely think my underwater photography has its own style. I really like clean images and focus on capturing the colors and beauty of the underwater world.

Spending time with an octopus or sea creature is the best key for this kind of image. As for how I capture the creatures in front of the camera, I just try to be patient and wait for them to come to me.”

What do you like most about being an underwater photographer? 

“There are really two things that I love about being an underwater photographer.

First, it’s such an unbelievable, complex, and beautiful environment to photograph. It’s like having your own little world to explore. And second, I love the challenge of trying to capture their impressions.

It’s so satisfying and the process is a fantastic challenge!”

Who (or what) are your biggest influences?

“My biggest influence is the sea itself. Something about the underwater world is just so incredibly fascinating and alluring.”

Have you received any awards or recognition?

“I’ve been working regularly for a few German dive magazines but I never entered a competition. It’s not something of interest to me.”

Do you have a favorite species you like to take pictures of?

“Basically anything with 8 arms.”

How do you know where to find an octopus or cephalopod to take pictures of?

“There are a few places where you’re more likely to find octopuses and cephalopods. You kind of learn over time what they like as an environment.”

What draws you in or fascinates you the most about cephalopods? When did this start for you?

“There are just so many fascinating things about cephalopods! The first time you see a cuttlefish or an octopus moving, especially changing their skin color and texture … it feels like magic! Later on, you learn that they are super intelligent and curious creatures, which makes them even more interesting.”

What’s your most memorable underwater photoshoot? 

“There are just too many to name one!

I really can say that I love the underwater world and all its creatures by heart. If I had to choose to dive only at one place on this planet, it would be the protected marine reserve around the Misool Resort.

It is just the most diverse, vibrant, and living place I have been to and it will for sure never become boring.”

What’s the best place for people to discover your work (website, social media)? 

“You can always find me on Instagram.”

🐙 Octopus Fun Fact

“That’s how diving and photography brought me around the world and I am fully aware that this is a huge privilege that I appreciate a lot.”

Thank You For Joining Us For Photographer Spotlight!

First, we want to give a big thank you to Tobias Zimmer for allowing us to showcase his beautiful octophotos on OctoNation. To continue supporting Tobia and his cephalotography, make sure to follow them on Instagram! If you have any interest in commissioning a piece from them, send Tobias a direct message.

If you want to educate yourself some more about all sorts of different cephalopods, take a look at our encyclopedia. Or, what we call it, our Octopedia!

Connect with other octopus lovers via the OctoNation Facebook group, OctopusFanClub.com! Make sure to follow us on Facebook and Instagram to keep up to date with the conservation, education, and ongoing research of cephalopods.

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