How to photograph Sea Sparkle: taking images of bioluminescent plankton

Bio Waves and Aurora, White Beach, Anglesey (Image credit: Kris williams)

Bioluminescence is one of the world’s most intriguing natural phenomenon. It describes the release of light from a living organism, and there’s nothing quite as spectacular as seeing it in the ocean.

Bioluminescent plankton, also known as Sea Sparkle, creates ethereal scenes along the shores of beaches at night. It’s a rare and beautiful sight which, if you’re lucky enough to see it, is well worth capturing.

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Lauren Scott
Freelance contributor/former Managing Editor

Lauren is a writer, reviewer, and photographer with ten years of experience in the camera industry. She's the former Managing Editor of Digital Camera World, and previously served as Editor of Digital Photographer magazine, Technique editor for PhotoPlus: The Canon Magazine, and Deputy Editor of our sister publication, Digital Camera Magazine. An experienced journalist and freelance photographer, Lauren also has bylines at Tech Radar,, Canon Europe, PCGamesN, T3, Stuff, and British Airways' in-flight magazine (among others). When she's not testing gear for DCW, she's probably in the kitchen testing yet another new curry recipe or walking in the Cotswolds with her Flat-coated Retriever.