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Kip Evans – Underwater Photographer

Kip Evans is a professional photographer based in Monterey, California who specializes in deep-sea and underwater photography. He is currently the expedition photographer for a National Geographic Society project called the Sustainable Seas Expeditions (SSE), a five-year deep-water exploration, research, and education venture led by Dr. Sylvia Earle. Kip also conducts his own freelance photography business. 

"His work has been published in National Geographic, Rodale’s Scuba Diving, USA Today, and other publications. As a cinematographer, his work has aired on National Geographic Explorer, the BBC, Discovery, and other networks. "

“Technology is paramount to bringing back the images we’re trying to capture from the deep sea,” Kip explains. “Without the cutting-edge cameras and submersibles, we simply couldn’t gain access to the depths where we want to work.”  
 
With the SSE, Kip works both in the DeepWorker 2000 – a one-man submersible that can dive to 2,000 feet – and with a Phantom ROV. “We attach a minimum of one or two broadcast-quality cameras and lighting to the DeepWorker,” he explains. “Inside the sub I have a video screen and controller from which I manipulate the cameras.” The Phantom ROV can capture images and explore places when the ocean is too rough or explore areas that might be unsafe to go with the DeepWorker. 
 
In addition to his SSE work, Kip’s professional adventures include completing some of the first submersible dives ever off Cordell Bank (northern California), diving among whale sharks in Belize, and working on a recent National Geographic television special called “Pearl Harbor: Legacy of an Attack” with Dr. Robert Ballard, discoverer of the Titanic. 
 
Kip has an impressive set of knowledge and skills that make him particularly well suited to the type of work he’s doing now. He has a B.A. in environmental studies, is a self-taught photographer, and is a SCUBA instructor. He’s also been trained as a pilot for the DeepWorker to its full operational depth.  
 
Kip is quick to point out the importance of a good education. “My background in environmental studies and marine biology helps me tremendously, from identifying species to reading and understanding changes in the ocean,” he explains. His science training also helps him relate to the researchers with whom he works.

"My background in environmental studies and marine biology helps me tremendously, from identifying species to reading and understanding changes in the ocean"

After college Kip worked as an environmental consultant and a marine science educator before joining the staff of the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary as an education specialist. From there he joined the SSE team, and he continues his freelance work as well. 
 
Kip’s work has enabled him to be the first to dive in areas that have never been explored – one of the best parts of his job, in his opinion. “It’s also great to see the fruits of my labor show up on TV or in magazines, so that others can then learn from what we’ve been able to accomplish on this blue planet of ours,” he says.  
 
Kip Evans taught a MATE class entitled, "Deep Sea Photography and Camera Systems" at Monterey Peninsula College in February 2002.


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This project is supported, in part, by the NationalScience Foundation.  Opinions expressed are those of the authors and not necessarily the Foundation.
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