The coal-miner turned photographer is bringing a new angle to oceanic imagery
The coal-mining town of Bulli, south of Sydney, is not regarded as a repository of high art, nor as a vibrant and pulsing beehive of life and color, and yet there was Ray Collins. Seven years ago the idea of his new photography book, Found at Sea, would have seemed ludicrous to him; he was still working a mile down in the mines and hadn’t shot a single frame. Collins crawled out of the mines after blowing out a knee—“No shock absorbers left,” he says—and bought a camera with the payout. In the short years since, Collins has transitioned from subterranean to submarine and become arguably the most inventive water photographer in Australia.