The Safina Center

Weddell Seal Pup, Ross Sea, AntarcticaWeddell Seal Pup, Ross Sea, AntarcticaPhoto taken by: John Weller

John Weller – Safina Center Fellow

John Weller is a critically acclaimed photographer, writer and filmmaker whose work ranges from shark protection in Micronesia to Ross Sea (Antarctica) conservation.

Weller has been a SeaWeb Fellow since 2005 and was named a Pew Fellow in Marine Conservation in 2009. His library of Ross Sea photographs has been used by conservation organizations all over the world, published in dozens of magazines and publications, including National Geographic; and showcased at the 2009 and 2011 Antarctic Treaty Consultative Meetings. Weller also produced a short film, which was a finalist in the 2010 Blue Ocean Festival.

Weller works directly to promote marine protections around the world. An impassioned observer of nature, he has followed a path through the Colorado Desert to the waters of the Antarctic. He started The Last Ocean Project with Antarctic ecologist David Ainley in 2004, and has been working on Ross Sea conservation since. His latest book, The Last Ocean, was developed through close cooperation with scientists, policy-makers, and conservation organizations invested in the Ross Sea. Working closely with partner Shawn Heinrichs, Weller recently helped spearhead conservation campaigns in the Bahamas, Micronesia, and in Raja Ampat, Indonesia.

Since beginning his fellowship (2/1/2014) Weller has been creating an innovative campaign to inform and inspire the people of Raja Ampat to protect their coral reefs. The Guardians of Raja Ampat Campaign consists of a month-long tour of 12 key villages that have legal authority over their marine environments and is centered around the grand outdoor presentation of a special film developed for and about Raja Ampat. Weller has already shot approximately 75% of this film.

Here’s a five-minute trailer of the Guardians film. Look for a blog and photos about the campaign soon on