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Maya Water World



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A Watery Grave
Photograph by Wes Skiles

Octavio del Río, one of the cenote survey project co-directors, sketches details of a Maya skull that lies in the debris of a cenote in the northern Yucatán Peninsula. The victim may have been a human sacrifice, perhaps to Chac, the Maya god of rain, who lived in the underworld. Probing 20 or so cenotes in ancient Maya territory, expedition scientists concluded that small-town Maya followed the religious customs of grand cities such as Chichén Itzá, and that cenotes were vital to their sense of eternity.

Photo Fast Facts

Camera: Nikon F4
Film Type: Fujichrome Provia 100
Lens: Nikkor 20mm
Speed and F-Stop: 1/60 @ f/8

Weather Conditions: Wet
Time of Day: Afternoon
Lighting Techniques: Underwater caves are perhaps one of the most difficult environments to shoot in. It's 100 percent dark, water-filled, and hazardous. You need special equipment, communications, and assistance. In this image, we used four sources of mixed color temperature light, two Subsea 200s and 2 Ikelite 400 watt second strobes.



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