Inka Cresswell: Teaching the world to love the ocean
Meet Inka Cresswell, our newest Ocean Ambassador. The 26-year-old wildlife filmmaker is working to document the state of our oceans whilst inspiring other young women to take up careers in science and conservation. Clare Fischer interviewed Inka earlier this month to find out more about what inspires and drives her.
Growing up next to the sea in Brighton, Inka has “always seen the ocean as a magical place, a world hidden out of view”. Going on to study Marine Biology at university, she discovered a passion for photography, realising that her images could be used “to tell a story or convey a conservation message.”
“Through photography I’m able to document behaviours and interactions that may have otherwise gone unnoticed or only be accessible to a few.”
Following graduation, Inka’s love for the ocean continued, working on shark tagging expeditions with the Watermen Project, developing her skills as a dive instructor and building her portfolio in underwater photography, before returning to the UK to study a masters in wildlife filmmaking. That was her big break.
Inka produced MY 25: The Ocean Between Us, an intimate film about the changes she had seen in the ocean in her lifetime: “My goal was to create a film that would not only educate people about ocean conservation, but leave them inspired and hopeful for the future.” The film is currently playing at a variety of international film festivals including ‘Wildscreen’ and the ‘Wildlife Conservation Film Festival’.
Producing the film in turn allowed Inka to tackle another issue she was becoming increasingly passionate about: “Growing up, I rarely saw anyone who looked like me in my textbooks or in the documentaries I watched.” If you never see anyone you can relate to making it in the industry you aspire to be in, says Inka, it’s easy to feel out of place and defeated before you’ve even begun your journey. She feels a responsibility to try and encourage other women into science and wildlife filming, especially those who may feel it’s a closed world to them.
Inka is hopeful that we can not only make the field of ocean conservation more inclusive, but that we, as a community, “can change the fate of our oceans, it just requires some serious action”.
“We need people from every corner of our planet working together and this means that everyone, no matter their race, religion, gender, or sexual identity must feel able to engage with our marine environment and in conservation work.”
For Inka, becoming one of our Ocean Ambassadors is a perfect fit: “It’s a fantastic opportunity to be able to highlight some of the great work being done to conserve our local coastlines. It’s great to be a part of it and to be able to use my creativity and reach to shine a light on all of that.”
Read more about our Ocean Ambassadors here.Tweet