Review by Lizzie Guilfoyle
I'M NOT particularly fond of fish, either in their natural habitat
or set out on a platter for dinner, so it was with a modicum of
indifference that I began turning the pages of David Doubilet's
Water Light Time.
It wasn't long, though, before I discovered that there's much
more to this particular life form, and to marine life in general,
than meets the eye, much of it due to Doubilet's extraordinary
Born in 1946, Doubilet's love affair with the under-water world
began when he was just eight-years-old. Four years later, he took
his first under-water photographs and has continued to do so ever
since, eventually turning professional in 1972 with the publication
of his work in National Geographic.
Over the years, he has received numerous awards for his work,
including the prestigious Sara Prize from Italy's Mondo Sommerso
And looking at his photographs, it's easy to see why for they
reflect not only his passion for the sea and the life it sustains
but also, his skill and innovativeness as a photographer.
Water Light Time does, in fact, encompass 25 years of
Doubilet's work, his beautiful images taken in oceans and seas
right across the globe - from the waters of the Galapagos Islands
to the Red Sea, from Pacific shores to the fresh waters of North
I do, however, have one major criticism of the book's presentation
and that's with the picture captions. They are so small as to
be almost unreadable. Even with my specs and a good light, the
exceptionally small print is difficult to decipher.
That aside, Doubilet has afforded us the privilege and pleasure
of glimpsing an alien world that exists on 'the underside of the
surface' of water - of a world that few of us can ever hope to
see for ourselves.
And in so doing, he has given me a completely fresh approach
to the subject.