National Geographic Events

Speakers Bureau

Brian Skerry Underwater Photographer

Photo: Right Whale

Photograph by Brian Skerry

Photo: Brian Skerry
Photograph by Mauricio Handler

“To make great pictures, a photographer must observe and truly see … Over time I learned that the real value is in being patient, slowing down, and watching the world around me.” —Brian Skerry

Growing up in a small, working-class town, Brian Skerry dreamed of exploring the oceans and becoming a National Geographic photographer. Today, Skerry is one of the leading underwater photographers in the world.

Since 1998, Skerry has covered a wide range of stories for National Geographic documenting the harp seal’s struggle to survive in frozen waters, the alarming decrease in the world’s fisheries, the planet’s last remaining pristine coral reefs, the plight of the right whale, and threatened sharks in the Bahamas, to name a few. His images celebrate the mystery of the depths, and offer portraits of creatures so intimate they sometimes appear to have been shot in a studio. Skerry dives eight months of the year, often in extreme conditions beneath Arctic ice or in predator-infested waters, and has even lived at the bottom of the sea to get close to his subjects. He has emerged as a leading voice for marine conservation.

In 2011, National Geographic Books published Ocean Soul, a landmark retrospective of Skerry’s photographs.

Skerry’s powerful presentations showcase award-winning imagery and thrilling wildlife encounters, inspire reverence for the marine realm, and offer hope for protecting the vitality of the world’s oceans.

Popular Presentations

Ocean Soul
In the last 50 years, 90 percent of the big fish in the ocean have disappeared. Over 100 million sharks are taken annually and species of whales and sea turtles are on the brink of extinction. In his trademark presentation, Skerry showcases his stunning photography and describes his adventurous life in a gripping portrait of the ocean as a place of beauty and mystery, a place in trouble, and ultimately, a place of hope that will rebound with the proper attention and care.

A Day at the Office
For Skerry, a day at the office might mean watching his boat sink, being nipped by sharks, getting chased by a sperm whale, or tangling with giant squid. The keys to success in the business of ocean exploration and wildlife photography are disciplines that translate to any business: setting goals, managing risks, working with team members of varying skill levels and backgrounds, and solving problems on the fly. Dive into a day in the life of an underwater photographer as he explores some universal business challenges.

Learn More About Brian
National Geographic Photographer Profile
Brian Skerry’s Website

Testimonials

"Brian Skerry presented to a very diverse Honeywell audience and had everyone entranced with his underwater photography and stories of getting the perfect picture for National Geographic. He adds humor to his stories and his photos are incredible. It’s hard to find a speaker who will resonate to an audience from around the world but Brian was able to do just that!" —Jeannie Tackman, Honeywell

"I was thrilled with the presentation that Brian Skerry gave to our company. With his beautiful photographs, charming and entertaining anecdotes, as well as deeper message on the environment, Brian was a wonderful presenter and it was no mystery why he filled our auditorium. I would love to bring him to more of our sites. For anyone who loves photography or the ocean, Brian's presentation will bring that sense of adventure, exploration, and even conservation that resonates to all types of audiences." —Lawrence P. Chao, Ph.D., Intel Corporation

Photo: Fish

Listen to Radio Interview With Brian Skerry

Boyd Matson Interviews Brian for NG Weekend radio show

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National Geographic Speakers

Speaker name
Sam Abell
   Photographer Photo of Sam Abell
William Albert Allard
   Photographer, Writer Photo of William Albert Allard
Casey Anderson
   Naturalist, TV Host Photo of Casey Anderson
Peter Athans
   Mountaineer, Filmmaker Photo of Peter Athans
Robert Ballard
   Underwater Explorer Photo of Robert Ballard
Brady Barr
   Reptile Expert, TV Host Photo of Brady Barr
Angela Fisher and Carol Beckwith
   Photographers, Writers Photo of Angela Fisher and Carol Beckwith
Keith Bellows
   Editor in Chief, National Geographic Traveler Photo of Keith Bellows
Melina Bellows
   Publisher, Editor Photo of Melina Bellows
Don Belt
   Former Chief Foreign Affairs Correspondent, National Geographic Photo of Don Belt
Lee Berger
   Paleoanthropologist Photo of Lee Berger
Joel K. Bourne Jr.
   Contributing Writer Photo of Joel K. Bourne Jr.
Kobie Boykins
   NASA Engineer Photo of Kobie Boykins
John Bredar
   Senior Executive Producer, National Geographic Specials Photo of John Bredar
Kenny Broad
   Cave Diver, Environmental Anthropologist Photo of Kenny Broad
Dan Buettner
   Author, Explorer Photo of Dan Buettner
Andy B. Casagrande
   National Geographic Cameraman Photo of Andy B. Casagrande
Barry Clifford
   Underwater Explorer Photo of Barry Clifford
Jodi Cobb
   Photographer Photo of Jodi Cobb
Michael Davie
   Filmmaker Photo of Michael Davie
Wade Davis
   Cultural Anthropologist, Author Photo of Wade Davis
Dennis Dimick
   Executive Editor, National Geographic Magazine Photo of Dennis Dimick
David Doubilet
   Underwater Photographer Photo of David Doubilet
Sylvia Earle
   Marine Biologist Photo of Sylvia Earle
Frans Lanting and Chris Eckstrom
   Photographers, Filmmakers, Writers Photo of Frans Lanting and Chris Eckstrom
Andrew Evans
   Travel Journalist Photo of Andrew Evans
Michael Fay
   Conservationist, Biologist Photo of Michael Fay
Carol Beckwith and Angela Fisher
   Photographers, Writers Photo of Carol Beckwith and Angela Fisher
John Francis
   Planetwalker, Conservationist Photo of John Francis
Jerry Glover
   Agricultural Ecologist Photo of Jerry Glover
Annie Griffiths
   Photographer Photo of Annie Griffiths
Kevin Hand
   Planetary Scientist and Astrobiologist Photo of Kevin Hand
Zahi Hawass
   Archaeologist Photo of Zahi Hawass
Fred Hiebert
   Archaeologist Photo of Fred Hiebert
Peter Hillary
   Mountaineer, Author Photo of Peter Hillary
Nizar Ibrahim
   Paleontologist Photo of Nizar Ibrahim
Donald Johanson
   Paleoanthropologist Photo of Donald Johanson
Beverly & Dereck Joubert
   Photographers, Filmmakers, Naturalists Photo of Beverly & Dereck Joubert
Karen Kasmauski
   Photographer Photo of Karen Kasmauski
Mattias Klum
   Photographer, Filmmaker, Conservationist Photo of Mattias Klum
Emory Kristof
   Photographer Photo of Emory Kristof
Tim Laman
   Field Biologist, Wildlife Photojournalist Photo of Tim Laman
Chris Eckstrom and Frans Lanting
   Photographers, Filmmakers, Writers Photo of Chris Eckstrom and Frans Lanting
Albert Yu-Min Lin
   Research Scientist and Engineer Photo of Albert Yu-Min Lin
Greg Marshall
   Biologist, Inventor, Filmmaker Photo of Greg Marshall
Boyd Matson
   Journalist, Adventurer Photo of Boyd Matson
Mireya Mayor
   Primatologist Photo of Mireya Mayor
Steve McCurry
   Photographer Photo of Steve McCurry
Kim McKay
   Environmentalist, Author Photo of Kim McKay
Mark Moffett
   Ecologist, Photographer Photo of Mark Moffett
Nalini Nadkarni
   Forest Ecologist Photo of Nalini Nadkarni
Cathy Newman
   National Geographic Senior Writer, Author Photo of Cathy Newman
Michael "Nick" Nichols
   Photographer, Conservationist Photo of Michael "Nick" Nichols
Paul Nicklen
   Photographer, Biologist Photo of Paul Nicklen
Børge Ousland
   Polar Explorer Photo of Børge Ousland
Bob Poole
   National Geographic Cameraman Photo of Bob Poole
Victoria Pope
   Deputy Editor, National Geographic Magazine Photo of Victoria Pope
Chad Pregracke
   Environmentalist Photo of Chad Pregracke
Reza
   Photojournalist and Humanitarian Photo of  Reza
Jim Richardson
   Photographer Photo of Jim Richardson
Enric Sala
   Marine Ecologist Photo of Enric Sala
Joel Sartore
   Photographer, National Geographic Fellow Photo of Joel Sartore
Barton Seaver
   Chef, Conservationist Photo of Barton Seaver
Paul Sereno
   Paleontologist Photo of Paul Sereno
Brian Skerry
   Underwater Photographer Photo of Brian Skerry
Bryan Smith
   Adventure Filmmaker Photo of Bryan Smith
Will Steger
   Polar Explorer Photo of Will Steger
Maria Stenzel
   Photographer Photo of Maria Stenzel
Ed Viesturs
   Mountaineer Photo of Ed Viesturs
Spencer Wells
   Population Geneticist Photo of Spencer Wells
Rory Wilson
   Aquatic Biologist Photo of Rory Wilson
Andrew Zolli
   Futurist Photo of Andrew Zolli

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  • Annie Griffiths
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