Opinion Leader

Peter Schneider

Nationality: Germany

Opinion Leader

Peter Schneider

Nationality: Germany

Peter was born in Berlin, Germany.

He is a professional underwater filmmaker, cameraman and diving instructor.

He has worked on international award-winning documentaries such as ‘Adventure Ocean Quest’ with record freediver and environmentalist Fred Buyle and the DOP of ‘The Big Blue’, Christian Petron.

With Rachel Campergue he produced ‘Sharks of Rangiroa from Legend to Reality’, which received awards in Antibes and other international festivals. The film was one of the driving forces in creating the biggest shark sanctuary in the world in French Polynesia, where he settled down in 2001.

Here, in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, he started his career as an underwater filmmaker and fell in love with the big fauna such as sharks, manta rays, dolphins and whales.

"When photographing animals you find yourself silently communicating, saluting and thanking them for a beautiful pose and for accepting you into their world".

In 2009, after nearly 9 years there, Peter left the atoll of Rangiroa and stayed in ‘dry dock’ for a while to archive, edit and market the footage he had collected over all those years. Some of his shots are very rare if not unique and have been used for documentaries, commercials and feature films worldwide.

Another island in the Pacific was calling him in 2010 – Yap Island, Micronesia. For one year he managed the photo/video center of the Mares diving center Yap Divers.

Island life was only temporary, and in the coming years he was fortunate to travel to places and encounter animals he had dreamt of for many years. Thanks to photographer and Mares Ambassador Robert Wilpenig, who gave him assignments to shoot promotional material for his dive travel agency, Peter took part in several shark/human interaction classes with Erich Ritter Ph.D. This expanded his knowledge of animal behavior and human/animal interaction even further.

“All creatures are curious by nature, but of course don't want to be harmed either. A very simple fact, but you have to understand it with your heart when you really want to dance with an animal...including humans!”

Besides human/animal interaction, freediving is a subject he has been interested in for a long time.

On his path he has met some exceptional characters both outside and within the Mares family, and has had the chance to capture them on video. Almost a whole library of freediving films is the result- interviews, promotional films, music videos and experimental films.

“There is still so much unedited material in my archive which I would like to share with the world, but as soon as I open the box- more piles up.

No reason to complain, I guess?!?! I love what I am doing and I am grateful to have the privilege to live the life I am living.

Many thanks to everyone who influenced and supported me on my way. I hope I gave you at least as much as I got from you.

Nature sometimes seems to be cruel, but there is actually more cooperation out there than competition – and both do not mutually exclude each other, if you can see the bigger picture"

Equipment used:

Regulators: Abyss MR22, Prestige 15X
BCD: Dragon AT
Computers: Smart, Quad
Fins: Plana Avanti X3
Mask: X-Vision Ultra Liquidskin
Wetsuit: Flexa 5-4-3