Q & A with Caribbean Photographer Don Hebert

Sunset Watch Villa recently caught up with esteemed Caribbean photographer Don Hebert to learn more about his interesting journey from growing up in Michigan to living full-time in St. Thomas, where he explores the rich islands throughout the Caribbean.

Villa paradise as seen by Don Hebert.

Villa paradise as seen by Don Hebert.

It all started after he graduated from Michigan State University. Hebert took a job as an accountant in Michigan but soon realized that sitting behind a desk crunching numbers wasn’t for him. He then found a job teaching math in the Virgin Islands and made the trek. And like any traveler headed to a breathtaking paradise, he brought his camera along.

Hebert always had an interest in photography and would take his camera along on trips even prior to moving to the Caribbean. Although he wouldn’t travel solely to take photographs, one of the most magnificent places he remembers traveling to and taking pictures of is the Grand Canyon. When he moved to the Virgin Islands, he thought it would be a one or two-year adventure. But once he experienced the unmatched lifestyle and sheer beauty of the islands, he became a lifer and has remained in St. Thomas for the past 29 years. Eventually Hebert was earning more money by taking photos on the side than from his full-time teaching job, so he decided to put down the chalk and start focusing on a career behind the lens.

Don' Hebert's view of Sunset Watch Villa and the reef offshore.

Don’ Hebert’s view of Sunset Watch Villa and the reef offshore.

Photography was a bit more thrilling than teaching. Hebert recalled a day trip in a helicopter during which he took aerial photos of the Caribbean and its island

villas. During this particular shoot, he was accompanied by an island local who was just as enthusiastic about seeing the Caribbean from this unique perspective. No matter how many times you’ve seen the islands, the view from a helicopter tour offer an unbeatable and unique way to see the remarkable landscape and the astonishing blue waters.

Despite the thrilling helicopter rides and exotic local, he is still a family man. Hebert and his wife raised both of their two children on St. Thomas. He found it to be the perfect place to raise a family. They all enjoyed the tight community feel and laidback atmosphere that is synonymous with island life. In their down time, the Hebert family enjoys spending time with close friends in the community and entertaining visitors. They also enjoy island-hopping on their small boat and swimming with turtles at Turtle Cove.

Take a glance at some of Hebert’s photos on his website and get inspired to take a trip of your own to the BVI. Who knows, you may end up becoming a local as well!

Virgin Islands Villa as seen by Don Hebert

Virgin Islands Villa as seen by Don Hebert