Audun Rikardsen, Norway/ Finalist 2016, underwater category/ Wildlife Photographer of the Year
Audun wanted to juxtapose the peace above the water with the playfulness below. But he faced a considerable challenge. The light is so low during the polar night that normal underwater housings – waterproof casing for cameras – will not work for split-level pictures. So Audun developed his own. Then, it took patient planning to capture this moment. Before migrating south, humpback whales begin to play and sing more intensely in the bays around Tromsø. It’s thought the males are serenading the females ahead of the forthcoming mating season. With their wide, powerful tail flukes and long flippers, these 40-tonne animals launch themselves out of the water in a graceful arc.