September 2018 Video Contest Winner and Review

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WINNER CHOSEN AND REVIEW BY SCUBAVERSE.COM’S EDITOR-AT-LARGE AND RESIDENT UNDERWATER VIDEOGRAPHY EXPERT JEFF GOODMAN

Winner: Technical Dive on the USS Rankin – Florida by Alejandro Dutto

Winning Video:

Four wonderful films this month, each with it’s own merits. The standard of entries just keeps getting better and better, but as I have said on many occasions, if you are a novice film maker don’t be put off from entering by thinking your videos are not good enough as it’s only by getting your films out there and listening to comments that help you to improve and learn.

Please do have a look at all the film comments as well as those on your own entry.

Let’s take a look at this month’s entries:

Once it casts its spell – Dean Spraakman

Watch Dean’s video here.

Hi Dean. Fantastic images from beginning to end, accompanied by a good choice of music. Everything is well shot with steady camera work, good lighting and composition. Any one would be proud of these images. I would like to make one suggestion to you though. I am sure that you are skilled enough to progress beyond simple compilation videos where one animal portrait follows another with little or no story, or conclusion. This video would jump right up to another category if it had some narration with it. Be-it a personal narrative of your dives and encounters or a more anatomical script telling your audiences what they are looking at and why the creatures seen are so unique and special.  I urge you to try this.

On the Sand – Puerto galera, Philippines – Kristian Mears

Watch Kristian’s video here.

Hi Kristian. I could pretty well repeat the exact same comments as I put for Deans film, ‘Once it casts its spell’. You did go one step further than Dean by giving the video a purpose by defining a sandy ecosystem. As with Deans film I was captivated by the superb camera work, but while watching, my mind was crying out for more information or for you to stay with a few of the animals for longer that one shot, just to give me a chance to really appreciate the wonders of our underwater world.  A few wide establishing shots of the terrain would have really made a great difference.

Technical Dive on the USS Rankin – Florida – Alejandro Dutto

Watch Alejandro’s video here.

Well done for the written introduction. Knowing the history of the ship brings it alive and it becomes a real entity rather than just scrap metal on the sea bed. To keep your audience interested you then go further and bring in very timely ‘on screen’ information graphics, in two languages!  Loved the opening music to the wreck. Very ‘newsy’ and it worked well. The shoaling fish over and through the wreck were stunning and the music was made for them. You caught the edit points of musical crescendos with the dramatic fish movements perfectly. The changes of pace throughout were also good. All in all a well balanced and powerful video which I enjoyed very much.

Africa’s underwater forests – Jason Boswell

Watch Jason’s video here.

Beautiful moody opening with both music and images. I love the following of the shark. It was so peaceful and unobtrusive. Prefer it to the usual images of shark in your face. It’s more observational rather than confrontational. The ‘secretive’ shot of the cuttlefish was terrific, as were the octopus close-ups. A real ‘feel good’ film that put me in a quite a relaxed mood. All extremely well shot with good lighting and framing, steady camera and spot on exposure.

And the Winner is….

This month my winner is Technical Dive on the USS Rankin – Florida by Alejandro Dutto

Looking forward to seeing all your entries next month!

Jeff Goodman

Jeff Goodman

Jeff Goodman is the Conservation editor and also the Underwater Videography Editor for Scubaverse.com. 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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