I was photographing a resort on the Caribbean coast of Panama, but from day one, this local family was

very appealing to me. I noticed their little house along the shore, from which they’d launch a wooden canoe to play in the water every day. This kid, along with his mom, two sisters and younger brother, spent hours diving, swimming and laughing. On each break from shooting, I would swim and snorkel around them until we started to interact. As they grew to trust me, they let me shoot them playing, and I let them try using my camera. This image represents a special moment when the child felt so comfortable with me that I became a part of his daily play routine.

eye-opening images from the caribbean speak volumes

— k i k e c a lvo

pictures of paradise

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Devil’s Bridge, on the island of Antigua, is a natural limestone arch where, as the story goes, slaves from neighboring estates would leap to their deaths rather than submit to slavery. I’d seen plenty of daytime photos of the arch, so I came up with the idea of shooting it at night, using flashlights for illumination. I borrowed a few from my hotel, put the camera on a tripod, started a long exposure and ran around the arch, “painting” it with the light of the flashlights. After a few attempts, I got what I wanted, a very surreal look at an infamous spot.

— gary bogdon

When we checked in at the Jamaica Inn, the sun was about to set — one of my favorite times to shoot. I saw a fisherman in the bay about 100 yards out, so I waved to him. He cruised in and cut the motor, with his boat moored on the sand in the shallow water in front of me. I stepped into the water to get closer and shot this image, intentionally focusing on the bow. My favorite shots are like this: unplanned.

— r ay m o n d pat r i c k
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The most incredible thing about diving and photographing in the freshwater cenotes of Mexico’s Rivera Maya is the astonishing clarity of the water — it makes the clearest seawater look dirty in comparison. Shooting underwater presents other challenges as well. Once, for instance, when I swam away from the camera to add light to the scene with a portable flash, my fin wash nearly knocked the camera and tripod over onto the hard rock. The cavern in this photo had one of the most remarkable openings — wide and convoluted like the mouth of a jack-o’lantern. I love the combination of colors in this shot — blues, greens and black.

— steve simonsen

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My first day on Barbados, my driver picked me up early to shoot the sunrise. I soon realized that he’d miscalculated the timing; it was still the middle of the night. So I waited in the dark on this dramatic rocky point, with 80-foot plumes of water shooting skyward. I had no idea how to get the shot without drowning or being washed out to sea, so I would run out to the rocks, shoot a few frames and dash back before the waves crashed into the cliffs. I worked on that shot several times, and only once did I really get doused by the surf.

While shooting on Aruba, we chartered a boat and sailed to some small islands offshore. I knew I wanted to shoot from above to show off the color of the water, so the captain roped me into the line that pulls up the mainsail — and up I went. I placed my feet on the mast, trying to keep them out of the shot, and then leaned out to create an unobstructed view of the boat and our model in the water. The wind was blowing a bit; the gentle swaying on deck translated to about 10 feet of swing at the top of the mast.

— b r o w n w. c a n n o n i i i

— Jen Judge
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