You may have seen some amazing pics on the Cocobella pages from Em Hanney over the last few months. Her passion is sharing her love for ocean conservation through her work as an underwater photographer and environmental scientist. On the blog she invites us into her beautiful and remote part of the world near Nigaloo Reef.
A day in the life of Em Hanney:
Every day is really different here, but most start with an early morning workout and coffee!
My friends and I try and shoot as much as possible, so on our days off we’ll head out on an ocean adventure. The reef here is super accessible and if you swim off the beach you can find dense coral gardens!
On the days I’m not working behind my computer, I’ll be working as an Underwater Photographer on one of the manta ray tour boats. We’re lucky enough that manta rays are found here year-round. Even then, everyday is different as you never know what you might see out on the reef.
Ningaloo Reef is in Western Australia, 1250km north of Perth. The fringing reef is 260km long and has so much to offer. From March-July you might swim with whale sharks, in the winter months Humpbacks make their way up the coast on their annual migration, and mantas can be found here all year.
I’ve never been anywhere quite like the Ningaloo, and I feel very grateful to be able to call it home.
The ocean constantly inspires me. I’ve always been fascinated by the underwater world and being able to study it was a no brainer for me. An expedition to Indonesia to learn about the rainforest and coral reefs solidified my love for it, and then led to me carrying out a research project in Honduras, and later work in Madagascar.
Studying Environmental Science gave me the foundation to be able to help set up a research site in Madagascar. We would be scuba diving four times a day surveying the reefs, it was incredible.
I’ve always loved documenting my travels and the nature around me. I remember getting my first small point & shoot underwater camera when I was 13, as I really wanted to try and document my first swim with dolphins in the Mediterranean Sea. Over the years I’ve upgraded my gear and my passion for photography keeps on growing.
It’s only been since making the move to Australia I was able to get out and shoot almost every day and try to make that dream a reality. It’s really allowed me to combine my love for the ocean with my creative side.
When I am not doing any of that I am:
Diving, surfing and hiking with friends. My favourite place to hike would have to be Hawaii. The mountains are breathtaking. And sipping classic Straight Up Cocobella of course – so refreshing for hot beach days or days out on the water.