ON DECK AT 180 FEET.
This is the U.S. submarine, purposfully sunk in deep water by the U.S. Navy off the coast of Maui, Hawaii for escape training, that brought me to one of the luckiest moments of my life.
It was here, in 1979, while diving down to explore the sub, that I saw, out of the corner of my eye, the school of Spotted Eagle Rays which became the signature photograph of my career.
I turned toward them and started shooting as they silently flew by. Each shot required that I change flash bulb (there were no electronic strobes yet), manually wind the camera (the case had an external lever to do this), refocus and recompose the photograph as quickly as possible. I got five shots off before they dissappeared into the dark. Total time for the five shots was about thirty seconds.
On returning to land, getting the photos developed and looking carefully at them, I saw that only one of them showed the rays wings in the up position as if in a ballet. You can see it HERE.
There were so many diving accidents at the submarine that the U.S. Navy eventually moved it out and dropped it into 10,000 feet of water.