Alex Jinich Diamant, 28, Mexico City and New York City

I believe that we connect most profoundly with ourselves and our humanity when we encounter intense beauty, and over the past two years I have pursued this through brief encounters with sharks. I have been blessed with the opportunity to capture not just their natural elegance but also the intensity of the encounter between humans and one of the few wild species with far greater power than us.

Joining them in their habitat without any protection other than the camera means trusting that the dance born out of our eye contact and the rhythm of our movements is enough to create a mutual recognition that we can be curious and hospitable towards one another as long as we remain unafraid. Spending time with them has made me reconsider the nature of the abyss between human and non-human and given me some of the most beautiful moments in my life. My photographs are my attempt at sharing this with others.

I intend to use any funds to continue to travel to search for and capture beautiful encounters that touch upon what being human and alive might mean.