Splash Photography

Pat Gallant-Charette

Photograph by Gabe Souza.

Frigid waters, jellyfish hordes, riptides, and things that go bump in the night — nothing has stopped sexagenarian Westbrook aqua-woman Pat Gallant-Charette on her quest to beat marathon swimming’s globe-spanning challenge.

To get an underwater portrait of ocean swimmer Pat Gallant-Charette, the subject of Will Grunewald’s profile in our February 2019 issue, we sent a five-person team to the Casco Bay Branch of the YMCA of Southern Maine, where Gallant-Charette trains, in Freeport. Photographer Gabe Souza used an underwater camera housing with a strobe. To keep him submerged, director of photography Mark Fleming filled a backpack with 45 pounds of dumbbells. Then, with two safety divers in place, Fleming says, “we strapped the backpack on Gabe and hoped for the best — he was able to hold his breath for a good 40 seconds to nail the shot.” Check out our behind-the-scenes video of the watery shoot.

Video by Lone Spruce Creative.

Will Grunewald

Will Grunewald is Down East's associate editor.