Valerie was born in Australia, 1936 and married Ron Taylor in 1963. Valerie was a commercial artist when she first ventured underwater in 1956. In 1960 Valerie took up spear fishing, eventually winning several Australian championships for both spear fishing and scuba. The Taylor's first major underwater film production, Shark Hunters, shot in black and white, was sold to Australian and American television in 1963. In 1967 the Taylor's accompanied the Belgian Scientific Expedition to the Great Barrier Reef as advisors and underwater photographers, for a period of six months. Ron was filming underwater with his own Eclair 35 mm movie camera, in a housing he constructed himself. Since 1969, Ron and Valerie retired from the sport of killing fish, and now capture the beauty of the underwater world on film. In fact the Taylor's started specializing in producing spectacular underwater action on film. Ever since, many international film producers have made good use of the Taylor Film Library. In 1969 the Taylor's formed their own company, Ron Taylor Film Productions Pty Ltd. In the same year came the extremely exciting adventure in the filming of the American feature film, Blue Water, White Death. Ron and Valerie played two of the four main characters in the film, along with Stan Waterman and Peter Gimbel. The Taylor's were responsible for sending the film crew to South Australia to find and film the Great White Shark. In 1969 Valerie took up underwater photography. Ron built underwater housings for Valerie’s cameras which were, at the time, far in advance of anything available in the market place. This, along with her artists eye, enabled Valerie to quickly become one of the worlds top underwater photographers, a position she holds to this day. During 1970 - 71, the Taylor's did the underwater filming and directing for the 39 episode TV series entitled Barrier Reef. In 1972 and 73 Ron and Valerie produced their own television series, Taylor's Inner Space. This series of 13 films, features Taylor encounters with the marine life of the western Pacific. These films were exhibited throughout the world with great success. Valerie, having concentrated on underwater still photography, received excellent exposure in the National Geographi June 1973 issue including having her image on the cover holding the camera and macro attachments Ron designed and built for her. Valerie's stills have also featured in other leading world book publications, such as Readers Digest, Stern, Life, The Bulletin etc. Valerie was contracted to shoot stills in the Virgin Islands for Time-Life's American Wilderness series of books. During 1974 the Taylor's were credited with filming the live shark sequences for Jaws. Since then, Taylor shark sequences have appeared in several "shark" productions, the best known being the National Geographic TV documentary on Sharks showing Valerie being bitten by Blue Sharks while wearing a steel mesh suit. Other notable feature films they have contributed to include Orca and The Blue Lagoon. National Geographic Magazine used two Taylor picture stories in their May 1981 issue. The cover story being about the shark protection offered by Ron's idea of a suit of mail. The cover was a photograph taken by Valerie Valerie was greatly honored in 1981 by the Underwater Society of America where she received the NOGI award for Arts, and Joined Ron as the only husband and wife team to be awarded a NOGI. The Taylor's were special guests at an underwater film festival at Luzerne, Switzerland in 1984, where they met Hans and Lotti Hass, pioneers in the field of underwater photography. Hans has always been Valerie's hero, and it was one of her ambitions to meet him. Hans Hass was Ron’s inspiration to shoot film underwater. On the 4th October 1986, Valerie went to Holland where she was appointed Ridder of the Order of the Golden Ark, by his Royal Highness, Prince Bernhard of the Netherlands: Valerie was presented the insignia of the Order of the Golden Ark at Soestdijk Palace. The award was for her work in the field of marine conservation. After this, Valerie went to Sweden where she finalized the picture selection for a large book called, The Realm of the Shark. The book is a biographical account of the Taylor's lives from the late 1950's, until the late 1980's. In 1990, they shot the underwater scenes for a follow up on the 1982 feature, The Blue Lagoon. This film is called Return to the Blue Lagoon. In April 1991, the Taylor's joined with author Peter Benchley, and the American film maker Stan Waterman, working once again with the Great White Sharks, this time in Western Australia. This TV special was about the tragic decline of White sharks. Twice during 1991, Valerie Taylor was a guest of Jean Michelle Cousteau, first on board The Alcyone during the shooting of their special on Great White Sharks. And later in June when Valerie dove with spotted dolphins in the wild. The Taylor's have supplied pictures to help illustrate the Cousteau's book on the Great White Shark. In October 1991 the Taylor's received permission to work in the USA on another Hollywood feature called Honeymoon in Vegas, starring Nick Cage and James Caan. In January 1992, the Taylor's went to South Africa for filming on the National Geographic Blue Wilderness series. Here they tested an electronic shark repelling barrier, and became the first people to ever film Great White Sharks underwater without a cage. This event is mainly due to the fact that their cage was torn from the boat during a storm and lost at sea. They continued their tests with the shark repeller over 1993 and 1994, whilst continuing their other film work. Valerie had repelled dozens of sharks using the barrier with amazing success. Later versions of the shark repeller were not as effective. In 1995 Valerie was guest of honour at the Festival of Rome for a celebration of the sea. In April 97 Valerie won the prestigious American Nature Photographer of the year award for a picture of a Whale Shark swimming with a boy in Ningaloo Marine Park. this award is sponsored by National Geographic, Kodak and The American Press Club. The Taylor's latest book BLUE WILDERNESS written by Valerie and photographed by Valerie and Ron won the 1998 Gold Palm Award for images at the 25th. World Festival of Underwater pictures in Antibes France. In October 1999 The Taylor's were Guests of Honour at this festival. On the 15th of March 2000 Valerie was honoree in the American Women Divers Hall of Fame. The Taylor's latest TV series of 3 one hours, IN THE SHADOW OF THE SHARK, is the story of their diving lives. Shadow of the Shark has been sold to National Geographic, Channel 7 in Australia and over 100 other countries. In October 2000, Ron and Valerie were one of the inaugural enshrines into the International Scuba Diving Hall of Fame, on the Cayman Islands. On Australia day 2002, Valerie was awarded the honour of Australian Senior Achiever of the year. Also early 2002 Ron and Valerie received the Serventy conservation medal from the Australian Wildlife Preservation Society. Valerie Taylor is the Patron of the National Parks Marine Association of NSW, Australia.