If you've ever held your breath underwater, you've technically been free diving. But the sport of free diving is an entirely new ball game, where individuals can dive to depths in excess of 600 feet on one single breath. Though it allows one to appreciate the serenity of the underwater world without the burden of diving equipment, free diving can be dangerous and is certainly not an easy physical or mental undertaking.
Add the task of underwater photography while you're free diving -- with blood being restricted from your extremities and conserved for your vital organs -- and it's a new challenge. One Thailand-based couple, Eusebio and Christina Saenz de Santamaria, have not only mastered holding their breath for extended periods of time, but they take beautiful underwater imagery while they're doing it. One Ocean One Breath features some of their gorgeous photography, and needless to say, we're all a bit envious of this talented and adventurous duo.
Their free diving has taken them from the Red Sea to the Caribbean and to Hawaii -- among other incredible locations - where they have encountered sharks, dolphins and other wildlife face-to-face. "From our experiences the knowledge of body language, of both ourselves as free divers and of the shark itself, is essential. When a shark feels non-threatened it will display slow and natural swimming patterns; however if a shark feels threatened, it may exhibit certain body positions which includes a hunched back and lowering of the pectoral fins, as well as frisky swimming patterns and frequent changes in direction," they wrote in a blog about diving with Caribbean reef sharks. "It is important to be able to recognize such body language and know when it is time to respect their space and retreat from their area."