Ralph A. Clevenger grew up on the coast of North Africa and began diving in the waters of the Mediterranean Sea at the age of 7 with his father. In the early 60s, he was strongly influenced by Jacques-Yves Cousteau’s films and television shows about the undersea world and decided early on to become a marine biologist when he “grew up”. He eventually went on to study zoology and worked for the Scripps Institution of Oceanography in San Diego as a diver/biologist before attending Brooks Institute of Photography. Clevenger was a senior faculty member at the Brooks Institute for 33 years, teaching courses in Natural History and Underwater Photography, among other professional photo and video courses.

Based in Santa Barbara, California, Ralph is now retired from his commercial photography business but still travels extensively sharing images and video via his website and Instagram account.  Much of his photography is now dedicated to supporting environmental and social issues he’s passionate about.  He is the author of the book Photographing Nature, published by New Riders.

Ralph has traveled throughout the world on assignment including Australia, Chile, the Caribbean, Ireland, New Zealand, Mexico, Costa Rica, Antarctica, Africa, Norway, Italy, Fiji, Canada and Alaska. 

His award-winning photography is exclusively represented by Tandem Stills and Motion : 


To inquire about print sales, speaking engagements, assignments or workshops please contact Ralph at (805) 698‑8777 or his business manager, Mary Jane, via email at ralph@ralphclevenger.com

His clients include:

  • Fox Sports Network
  • MacGillivray-Freeman Films
  • California State Parks
  • Denali National Park Wilderness Center
  • Monterey Bay Aquarium
  • University of California, Santa Barbara
  • The Nature Conservancy
  • National Park Service
  • National Marine Sanctuary
  • Light & Motion
  • Santa Barbara Maritime Museum

His publication credits include:

  • Afar
  • Audubon
  • Backpacker
  • Islands
  • Oceans
  • Outside
  • Orion Nature Quarterly
  • National Geographic
  • National Geographic Traveler
  • Nature’s Best
  • Terre Sauvage
  • National Geographic Books
  • Smithsonian Books
  • Sierra Club Books
  • and many other national and international publications.

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