Michael Muller Photographs Great White Sharks in Medium Format for 'Into the Shark's Eye'

Going from A-list celebrity headshots in Hollywood to swimming with sharks in South Africa in 72 hours, photographer Michael Muller seems to balance his commercial work with his personal work quite well. In this behind-the-scenes video, we get to come along with Muller as he attempts to capture a great white shark breaching the water — while being lit by strobes.

Great white sharks have been photographed before, so what new can be accomplished? Quite a bit actually, and Muller sought out to do that with his own custom kit for underwater shooting. On top of using strobes, he had a goal to capture the moment of breach, when the massive sharks jump up and out of the water. In a blog post by Muller on the Phase One website he writes, "Since I couldn’t bring the sharks into the studio, I brought the studio to the sharks."

Muller was shooting with a Phase One XF IQ3 80MP system, capturing 80 megapixels of detail, giving him an incredible amount of detail to work with. On the Phase One blog, Muller explained why it so important, and revealing, to use a high-resolution system like this.

...Recently when I zoomed into the images I’d taken, I was amazed. I could literally see the shark’s iris, see the eye in all its specificity — the same view that I see when I dive with them. It creates this connection, because you can see how almost human they are as they look at you. But no camera ever revealed that until I shot with the 80MP system.

It obviously takes a huge amount of dedication to your art to keep going back and working a project of this scope. If you'd like to see some more of this work, check out Michael Muller's book, "Sharks. Face-to-Face with the Ocean’s Endangered Predator."

[via Phase One]

Mike Wilkinson's picture

Mike Wilkinson is an award-winning video director with his company Wilkinson Visual, currently based out of Lexington, Kentucky. Mike has been working in production for over 10 years as a shooter, editor, and producer. His passion lies in outdoor adventures, documentary filmmaking, photography, and locally-sourced food and beer.

Log in or register to post comments

Nope. Not watching this. Ever.

Some great inspiration and the speech at the end really sold it!

Ive been following Michael's work for a while now. Love the way he captures the sharks.

Honestly that seemed like a lot of work and money for resulting photos that were at best OK, certainly not world class, and certainly not a great ad for Phase One.

Can't imagine how difficult logistically this was to pull off, big time vision from Muller

What an incredible personal project. Really impressive work, and a great way to bring attention to some of the most majestic animals around.