Brian Skerry is a photojournalist specializing in marine wildlife and underwater environments. Since 1998, he has been a contributing photographer for National Geographic Magazine. He was named a National Geographic Society Photography Fellow in 2014 and a National Geographic Society Storytelling Fellow in 2017. He was also awarded the title of Rolex National Geographic Explorer of the Year in 2017.
For National Geographic Magazine, Skerry’s stories have ranged from the harp seal’s struggle to survive in frozen waters, to the alarming decrease in the world’s fisheries, to dolphin intelligence—all cover stories. A fourth cover story in February 2017 focused on protecting special underwater ecosystems in U.S. waters. During this coverage, Skerry produced the first images of a sitting U.S. president underwater. In 2021, his latest project “Secrets of the Whales” was released as a cover story in National Geographic Magazine, a book, and an Emmy Award-nominated four-part documentary series now streaming on Disney+.
Skerry is an 11-time winner in the prestigious Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition. He has also been recognized with awards from Pictures of the Year International, Nature’s Best, and Communication Arts. He is the only photographer to win the coveted Peter Benchley Award for Excellence in Media. In 2010, National Geographic chose an image by Skerry as one of the magazine’s 50 Greatest Photographs of All Time, and in 2016, he received the National Geographic Photographers’ Photographer Award, an honor bestowed by his colleagues. The Academy of Underwater Arts and Sciences presented Skerry with the 2019 NOGI Award for Arts, an award frequently referred to as the “Underwater Oscar.”
Skerry has lectured on photography, exploration, and conservation at the United Nations General Assembly, the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, TED Talks, the National Press Club in Washington, D.C., the Royal Geographical Society in London, and the Sydney Opera House in Australia. He has appeared as a guest on television, including NBC’s Today Show and CBS’s This Morning, and on radio programs across the U.S.