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What makes a strong team? A shared vision? A mix of personalities?
Photographer Giacomo Cosua got a powerful insight into teamwork when he was commissioned by Parley for the Ocean to spend four months on board the Steve Irwin ship in the Antarctica, photographing the 43-strong team of Sea Shepherds, whose mission was to put a halt to illegal whaling in the area.

A ship is a special and unique environment so it’s important to keep a happy equilibrium. Sea Shepherds is very well organized. 43 people on board is a good number, but it’s important that everyone knows what their role is and their duties are clear-cut, to keep a communal focus.


I think one of the important factors in a good team is diversity. Everyone has their own history, background and experience. Everyone has their own motivations. With the Sea Shepherds the age gap was big, from 19 to 65. A good combination of diferent individuals, bound together by a mutual respect is vital.

You have been chosen to be on the team so don’t be afraid to just to be yourself, to share your story and allow it to be a part of the bigger picture.


Everyone was there to fight for the oceans, and also because they had some other personal motivation. But everyone was very clear that to win the battle you have to work together when needed.


We had three days of really heavy and emotional confrontation with the Japanese whalers. Everyone and everything was working towards that moment. It was extraordinarily tense – but we won. The celebrations afterwards were some of the best and most exhilarating I have ever experienced.

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