March 2018 Video Contest Winner and Review



Winner: Ghosts of Truk Lagoon by Craig Beasley

Winning Video:

Very varied subjects and styles this month but all excellent films. As ever I have made comments on each individual film so please read all comments just in case you are able to apply my thoughts to your own work.

Here are March’s videos:

Ghosts of Truk Lagoon – Craig Beasley

Watch Craig’s video here.

Not a lot to say about this film except brilliant. The written introduction was excellent and very moving. Loved the flickering opening and the music choice was perfect. The slow camera moves and the lighting enhanced the whole mood of the film. However there was just one small hiccup for me with the sound track. The transition from the two music tracks was a little abrupt and messy for both sound and vision. For future reference, as the second track was quite short I think I would have just used my best shots on the first tune and left the second part out all together as it broke the mood for me.

Underwater Marriage Proposal in the Maldives with Photobombers! – Richard Stevens

Watch Richard’s video here.

That was really nice. What a fabulous memory. Glad she said yes……

Crazy Shark Dive! – Richard Stevens

Watch Richard’s video here.

Hi Richard. What a perfect site. Thanks for the written intro, it really does make a difference to the enjoyment of the film to know what’s going on. The schooling Triggerfish were a great addition.

Thailand Hin Daeng and Hin Muang – Dave Weeks

Watch Dave’s video here.

Hi Dave, Unfortunately I could not get the sound to work. The images looked good but it was hard to judge your entry without the sound. Please could you look at the problem and enter again next month.

Channel Islands, CA – Abe Male

Watch Abe’s video here.

What a stunning place. Love Sea Lions. You captured them really well and the music was perfect with a good upbeat feel. The night time Sea Lions were a real treat and the onscreen text was a nice touch. You certainly captured a whole batch of wonderful animals. Not sure the music change worked for me as it totally altered the tempo of the film and became a distraction. Perhaps it would have been better as two films or one shorter one. I know the temptations. Been there. So many good shots that you don’t want to leave any out and it becomes frustrating when the music track is too short to accommodate all the images. But, often less is more as they say.

The Mad World of Lembeh – Betsy Beasley

Watch Betsy’s video here.

Wow, standards are certainly high this month. Your camera work is excellent with good clean, well lit and steady macro. Not easy to do. You got some fantastic critters in there. There is always the possibility of portrait macro films becoming repetitive but you have avoided that by capturing some really interesting behaviour. So many species I personally haven’t seen before. I was enthralled. Music worked well too.

Emperor Virgo Liveaboard – Scuba Diving in the Maldives – Deep South Shark Trip – Feb 2018 – Daniel French

Watch Daniel’s video here.

I liked the story beginning which gave a real feel of the trip. Music is good and the camera work throughout is extremely good with clear sharp, well composed and lit images. The Whip ray shot was really nice. I do like the identification graphics for the different species, easier than narration but just as effective. There were so many shots I liked in this film, too many to mention, but the puffer and the sweetlips were great and the shoaling Bannerfish were a real treat as were the rays in the ‘fish soup’.  Not so long ago all reefs used to be like this. The above-water footage was well thought out and a pleasure to watch.

Diving in Istanbul – Lutfu Tanriover

Watch Luftu’s video here.

Very nice opening feel to the video with the jellyfish and music which continued and was very relaxing to watch. Liked the goby eating the worm, don’t see that often. You have some great close up shots, especially the crabs and anemones where you framed the images well and held the camera extremely steady. The blennies next to the starfish leg was really nice. Lighting was spot on. My only word of caution is please be careful where you kneel on the bottom so as not to damage fauna and flora. I’m sure you were careful but just wanted to mention it.

Mediterraneo – Robert Caballero

Watch Robert’s video here.

Nice opening but had to laugh at the sea hare being dropped into shot by the diver, at least that’s what it looked liked to me. Other than that it was a good video that had a ‘real’ feel to it, especially with the torch lighting. The Morays were nice. Have to say though that the rough handling of the jelly fish was uncomfortable. I know they get worse than that in a storm but it did send the wrong message to other divers. Good camera work throughout and the music fitted really well.

And the Winner is….

There were two films that stood out for me this month, and they were Ghosts of Truk Lagoon and The Mad World of Lembeh. This by no means suggest the other were not good, because they were.

The winner this month is Ghosts of Truk Lagoon by Craig BeasleyIt was a film that had a lot of style and impact in that it left me thinking about war wrecks for quite a while after the film concluded. Well done Craig.

I look forward to your entries in April – good luck to you all.’s April 2018 Underwater Video Contest is now open! Enter as many as three of your underwater videos here.

Jeff Goodman

Jeff Goodman

Jeff Goodman is the Conservation editor and also the Underwater Videography Editor for Jeff is an award winning TV wildlife and underwater cameraman and film maker. With over 10,000 dives to his credit he has dived in many different environments around the world.

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