Mirko Zanni was born in 1970, in Locarno, Ticino, Switzerland. He obtained his first diving licence in 1989. Photography is a lifelong passion and after a few years’ diving experience he decided to combine his love of the ocean floor with his passion for taking pictures.
As a self taught photographer he was inspired by the books of the great photographers who preceded him. His first excursions were in the rivers near his home in Canton Ticino, where he soon found themes and settings to fire his creativity.
Today he is a photographer in his free time. He spends his holidays discovering oceans and faraway countries, especially in the Indian Pacific, where he finds inspiration for most of his pictures.
His companion and model, Tanja, shares his great passion, and Asia, born in 2005, has joined their team. Tiny though she is, travelling round the world with her parents seems to suit her perfectly.
Mirko has a preference for shooting small fish and underwater scenery. Anyone who sees these pictures has the impression of standing on the ocean floor surrounded by deep sea marvels. In recent years he has also spent some time shooting World War II aeroplane wrecks, both in the Mediterranean and Papua New Guinea.
He contributes to several diving magazines including Inmersion (Spain), SUB (Italy), Neptun 21 (Russia), DYK (Sweden), Aquanaut (Switzerland), Tauchen and Unterwasser (Germany), The Big Blue (Poland), Océans (France), Asian Diver, Scubadiver and Asian Geographic (Singapore), publishing articles on his trips, wrecks and marine fauna. Mirko has received many awards in international competitions for underwater photography: Oceanz (New Zealand), Celebrate the Sea (Singapore), LAUPS and Underwater Image (USA), Marmara Festival (Turkey), Subios (Seychelles). He has many times been the winner of the prestigious World Festival in Antibes (France). In 1999 he was Swiss underwater photography champion, and in the 2000 world championships in Egypt he won a bronze medal with the Swiss underwater photography team, as well as third place in the individual competition for underwater wide angle photography.
In 2006, his book Water Vision was awarded the coveted International Prize for Book of Underwater Images at the 33rd World Festival of Underwater Pictures in Antibes. Joining the ranks of David Doubilet, Laurent Ballestra, Zanni is one of only a handful of people to have achieved this recognition.
The equipment used:
Canon 5D in seacam housing, Lenses Canon 15mm fisheye, 100mm Macro Canon, 14mm Sigma,
Canon and Seacam dioptres for the macro lenses, and 1,5X teleconverter for the 15mm fisheye.
Sea & Sea 250TTL Substrobe mounted on TLC System arms