Featured Photographer | Arkadii Almendieiev
Arkadii is an underwater photographer and dive instructor from Ukraine. As a child, he would spend hours in the rivers and lakes in his country, and, occasionally, its seas. He recalls watching Costeau documentaries every Saturday and being in awe, promising himself he would learn to dive one day.
After getting certified in 2006 in Bali, it wasn’t until a few years later Arkadii tried a rental compact camera to take underwater photographs, during a trip to Southeast Asia. Needless to say, the results did not turn out great and he quickly realised he needed to upgrade his kit. Today he rarely goes underwater without a DSLR in a housing.
Arkadii and his wife Victoria live in Asia with their son, working as dive instructors. In2015 they started and developed an award-winning dive resort on Nusa Ceningan and by 2019 they had sold half of the Ceningan resort and started Pure Dive Resort on Nusa Penida. While they manage their own dive operation, they still try to travel throughout Southeast Asia as much as they can. Indonesia remains their favourite dive destination, especially the house reef on Nusa Penida. Their diving dream is to go to the Galápagos.
Making pictures underwater, comparing the 'mental image' of what he had in his head with the results on a laptop, selecting and editing the images is what gives him a thrill. A tiny shrimp or, even better, a cephalopod of any kind can easily give him as much adrenaline on a dive as a manta train going over his head or a sunfish on a cleaning station two metres away.
To keep sane during lockdown they shore dived their house reef at slack.
Bumphead parrotfish in the shallows Tulamben, Bali, Indonesia
Clownfish closeup Philippines
Flamboyant cuttlefish hunting Lembeh Strait, Indonesia
Giant moray eel Toyapakeh Wall, Nusa Penida, Indonesia
Hawksbill with two remoras Menjangan Island, Indonesia
Hermit crab with a decorated shell Nusa Penida, Indonesia
Mandarinfish Lembeh Strait, Indonesia
Oceanic sunfish on a cleaning station Bali, Indonesia
Peacock shrimps on an anemone Indonesia
Reef manta feeding Nusa Penida, Indonesia
Reef manta from down under Manta Point, Nusa Penida, Indonesia
Sepia cuttlefish - Nusa Penida, Indonesia
Bigfin reef squid with prey Indonesia
Warty frogfish Lembeh Strait, Indonesia
Stargazer portrait Indonesia
Clownfish Perhentian Island, Malaysia
Find Arkadii on Instagram @uwphoto.addict