Green Diva Meg spoke with Dr. Charles Rawlings about his underwater adventures photographing amazing living shells, listen to the Green Divas Heart Wildlife podcast, then read on for more…
My coffee table has a nice new fixture—a big book of amazing underwater creatures captured in the book Living Shells.
Living on the eastern coast, I’ve always had a love and fascination for the beach, ocean, and all the creatures that come along with it. I have quite a collection of shells, sea glass and gorgeous rocks floating around my house.
Every once in a while, I think about what the beautiful shells used to be—homes for living creatures. Since I’ve never been the diving type, I’ve never had the privilege of seeing them in their natural, living state on the ocean floor. That’s where the photographs found in Living Shells comes in, Charles Rawlings brings the ocean floor to your hands with an up-close-and-personal peek into how life works down there.
The quality of some of the photographs is not as bright and clear as I had hoped, but you’ve got to understand that these are taken in the dark ocean depths, where the sun doesn’t really reach. The details on the shells are still apparent, and impressive to look at.
My two year old even enjoyed flipping through the big pages, though to her everything was identified as “crabby!” I would have liked some additional information on which creatures I was looking at, but the purpose of a large photo book like this is really to look at the images, not read a bunch of text. There are details to open each section, explaining that you’ll be seeing gastropods, conchs, and abalones; but there are no identifying notes on the individual images.
Like anything else in nature, knowledge and exposure breeds appreciation—hopefully books like Living Shells can bring more attention to life at the bottom of the sea, and therefore make people care a little more about the ocean and all of its beings.
Here are a couple more images from the book:
Disclosure: I received a complimentary copy of this book to review. All opinions are my own.
Listen to this Green Divas Radio Show podcast about one of our other favorite ocean creatures—whales!
Images via Living Shells.