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Perfect in purple

Winter diving along Canada’s Pacific shore has its benefits and principal among them is the astonishingly clear water to be enjoyed much of the time by scuba enthusiasts up and down the length of the British Columbia coast. As temperatures cool and summer plankton blooms die off, underwater photographers happily anticipate the conditions so conducive to their pastime. And though winter skies are typically grey and overcast where the sea meets BC’s mountainous terrain, there are days, glorious days, when it all just falls into place and even those memorable tropical dives can’t compete. Such was this day diving Agamemnon Channel, a scenic fjord on the province’s Sunshine Coast. There, I’d been exploring deep walls where magnificent cloud sponges and gorgonian corals can be found. Later, in the sunlit shallows I was photographing this (spawning) aggregation of Purple or Ochre sea stars (Pisaster ochraceus) when my buddy Bill Reed snorkeled overhead giving the image a greater sense of depth and adding that appealing human dimension to the composition.

Photograph taken by Dale Sanders in Agamemnon Channel on the Sunshine Coast of British Columbia.  Taken with a Nikonos II underwater camera with a Nikkor 15mm UW f/2.8 lens. Fill light from a single Sea & Sea 120 underwater strobe. Exposure: Shot on Fujichrome 100 Provia film. Photo: © Dale Sanders –

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