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    I was fortunate to have encountered a humpback whale with her calf on my first day snorkeling near Japan’s Kumejima Island. Most of the time, the calf stayed close to her mom. At one point, the calf began jumping and tapping its tail on the water near us—it was very friendly and curious. Finally, the mother, who was watching nearby, came to pick up the calf and swim away. I fell in love completely with the calf and its very energetic, large, and beautiful tail.
    Composition 3
    Lighting 1
    Creativity 2
    Story 2

    Congratulations on being selected as the 2018 National Geographic Travel Photographer of the Year. That is awesome. I love your story behind this photo, I can only imagine how much of a magical experience this moment must have been to witness in real life. And with a 14mm lens, you were very close. I love it. Well done Reiko.

    David Y. Lee
    Producer, Nat Geo Your Shot
    Photo Details
    Date Taken: Feb 20, 2018
    Date Uploaded: Mar 1, 2018
    Location: Kumejima, Japan
    Focal Length: 14 mm
    Shutter Speed: 1/50 sec
    Aperture: f/5
    ISO: 200
    Copyright: © Reiko Takahashi
    Categories: Nature
    Assignments: Underwater Beauty
    Contests: 2018 National Geographic Travel Photographer of the Year