Like a dream

I haven’t stopped staring at these wow-worthy, dream-like photos by Ilse Moore, who is based near Joburg and specialises in underwater photography.

The images are part of her ‘Keep your eyes on me’ series, which is all about staying focused. “Despite the challenges and distractions around you, calm and peace will come if you know what you’re searching for,” she explains the idea behind the series.

Featuring Elsa Bleda as model, the shots were taken at the Marico Eye in the North West province. “It's a natural spring of crystal clear water, quite popular among divers. The area is surrounded and filled by lilies, while the actual Eye is about 17m deep. It’s definitely the most beautiful spot that I've ever done a shoot at,” says Ilse.

But why underwater photography? “When I was busy with my Visual Arts degree, I worked a lot with the concept of flight, which increasingly made me consider going underwater with my shoots. Water is symbolic of so many things including life, transformation and change, so with that being very much in line with the concepts I was working on, I decided to start experimenting underwater. I immediately fell in love with it!”

The two photos way below are of Elsa getting into the water for the first time (I love them too). She and Ilse spent about four hours (!) in the 16-17 degrees (!) water to get the shots. Even more reason to start staring again… 

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