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Announcing the winner of Scubaverse.com’s Video of the Year 2015

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Over the year there have been many very good entries into Scubaverse.com’s monthly Underwater Video Contests as well as one or two that although lacking in filming and editing experience, have nevertheless shown a great love of diving as well as a passion for the marine life encountered. It’s been a pleasure watching them all.

Making underwater videos is not as easy as one may first think. There are many disciplines to go through. First of all being a competent diver, although not crucial, is an advantage. Being able to concentrate on filming subjects while being able to dive on automatic is a definite bonus. There are occasions when inexperienced divers get carried away with shooting video, or even taking still photos, and get caught short by lack of air or ignoring possible decompression times. This does not mean the novice diver shouldn’t take video, but in doing so they must concentrate harder on keeping their dive profile safe. It is often all too tempting to swim off into the blue after a Dolphin or Manta only to discover that you are now caught in a current and can’t get back to the boat or reef. Another important skill to have is good buoyancy control so you don’t damage coral or kick up sediment when trying to get close to animals.

In the end, is it all worth it? Yes of course. The pure thrill of getting close to and capturing on video some fantastic marine animal and watching its behaviour is intoxicating.

But it’s when you are with your subject that the next stages of discipline kick in. Holding the camera steady while taking the shots. Often quite hard to do, especially in a swell or fast current. Is the image in focus and sharp? Is the exposure and colour balance right? How is the framing? All questions I continually ask myself as I shoot any video sequence. What’s the animal going to do next, and am I ready? Then when I have a good image secured in the camera, I have to think how is this going to fit in my sequence when I come to edit.

Of course most of this can be ignored simply by shooting with automatic cameras such as GoPro and just letting it run on its own throughout the entire dive. But oh how I feel for the poor partners back on shore that have to sit through hours of wobbly out of focus video and then say “That was nice dear.”

The only reason I mention all this is that I want the reader to have an idea just how much effort has gone into each video submitted in our monthly underwater video contest and how well the overall winner has done.

Along with myself, we had guest judges who kindly gave their time to look at each video and help choose the winner. Sven Harms and Yvette Trinh from SeaLife cameras and lights, and Dave Glanfield from Ocean Leisure Cameras. As judging can often be very subjective we decide to pick a winner by completing a point card system where different aspects of video making were given scores out of five. These were, composition, technical quality, overall feel to the film, narration, story telling, music choice and many more. Seventeen categories in all. Then the marks were added up and the winner declared.

The winner of Scubaverse.com’s Video of the Year 2015 is Matthias Lebo, with his winning film ‘The Four Kings’.

Congratulations Matthias – a worthy winner indeed. Your Scubapro Travel Kit is on its way to you.

Here is Scubaverse.com’s Video of the Year 2015:

You can enter Scubaverse.com’s Video of the Month Contest here. The contest generally runs from the 5th to the 25th of each month.

 

 

Jeff is a multiple award winning, freelance TV cameraman/film maker and author. Having made both terrestrial and marine films, it is the world's oceans and their conservation that hold his passion with over 10.000 dives in his career. Having filmed for international television companies around the world and author of two books on underwater filming, Jeff is Author/Programme Specialist for the 'Underwater Action Camera' course for the RAID training agency. Jeff has experienced the rapid advances in technology for diving as well as camera equipment and has also experienced much of our planet’s marine life, witnessing, first hand, many of the changes that have occurred to the wildlife and environment during that time. Jeff runs bespoke underwater video and editing workshops for the complete beginner up to the budding professional.

Gear Reviews

Gear Review: Scubapro Luna 2 AI Dive Computer

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dive computer

In a video produced exclusively for Scubaverse, Jeff Goodman reviews the Luna 2 AI Dive Computer from Scubapro.

For more information about Scubapro products, visit www.scubapro.johnsonoutdoors.com.

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Dive the richest reefs in the world with the pioneers of Raja Ampat 

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raja ampat

Papua Diving Resorts are the pioneers of sustainable tourism and diving in Raja Ampat. Our award-winning resorts are PADI Five Star and were the first exclusive dive resorts in the heart of the Dampier Strait. Where lush jungle meets clear, warm waters and the richest reefs on earth, let yourself embrace an escape like no other. 

With over 30 years of operation in Raja Ampat and award-winning commitment to the people and environment of Papua, Papua Diving Resorts’ experience and impact are unrivalled. This makes us the natural choice for ocean enthusiasts.

Our founder, Max, has been diving and exploring Raja Ampat since 1990, discovering the dive sites the area is so famous for. Paying tribute to his family, Max named a few of the dive sites after his wife and children, including Melissa’s Garden and Mike’s Point, as well as coming up with quirky names like Chicken Reef and Sardine Reef because of his experiences while diving there for the first time.  

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Papua Diving Resorts is also just a stone’s throw away from the famous Cape Kri, world record holder of most reef fish species counted on a single dive. In 2012, ichthyologist Dr. Gerry Allen counted 374 different reef fish species on a single dive at Cape Kri. In an interview, he said: 

“One of my favorite places to dive in Raja Ampat is Cape Kri near Sorido Resort… I didn’t even have to look for fish. They found me! The survey was the highest species count I’ve ever tallied on one dive, 374 distinct species in 90 minutes!” 

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Our dedicated team will make sure you see the best of Raja Ampat as we take you on incredible trips to the Fam Islands, Mushroom Islands and Manta points, just an hour away from our resorts. Experience Raja Ampat’s super reefs in a whole new light by joining the fluorescent dive and blackwater dives around Kri Island. Or simply enjoy a relaxing sunset and night dive where you can be sure to see the elusive mandarin fish and famous walking shark. 

With Papua Diving Resorts, guests get the chance to experience the Last Paradise at the very first dive resort in the area. Here, qualified and experienced staff are committed to giving guests the best Raja Ampat has to offer through Papua Diving Resorts’ quality service, food, and excursions. 

OUR RESORTS 

Papua Diving Resorts provides two world-class options to stay on Kri Island: the more traditional Kri Eco Resort, and upscaled boutique Sorido Bay Resort.  

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Sorido Bay Resort is our luxury boutique option 

Perfect for those who want a touch of luxury, Sorido Bay Resort is a collection of 9 charming bungalows with spacious rooms and ensuites, each with Wi-Fi, AC and fan and a veranda that overlooks a vibrant house reef. The private resort faces the Papuan sunrise, basking the island in a warm glow for a beautiful day in Indonesia’s Crown Jewel.

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Indulge in community-style meals at the sea-view restaurant that overlooks the turquoise waters of the house reef and Sorido Blue Hole beyond. If you’re lucky, you might spot a pod of dolphins or even whales with your morning coffee or afternoon tea.  

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Kri Eco Resort is where paradise meets sustainability 

Looking out over the dark blue waters of the Dampier Strait and distant mountain ranges, Kri Eco Resort is a cluster of authentic Papuan-style water bungalows built from locally sourced materials with 3 room types to choose from, two of which have communal bathrooms.

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The 13 cottages come with Wi-Fi, electric fans for still nights, and direct access to Kri’s vibrant house reef. The over-water sun deck area faces the Papuan setting sun, creating the picture-perfect spot for bright orange sunsets. With a more in-touch-with-nature feel, Kri Eco Resort bungalows allow guests to fully enjoy the cool sea breeze and natural beauty paradise has to offer. 

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Regardless of where you stay, you can be sure to experience the rich biodiversity of Raja Ampat. Enjoy looking down from our jetty into the crystal-clear waters of the house reef, where you can spot stingrays, blacktip reef sharks, moray eels and sea snakes, and if you’re lucky even some dolphins and dugongs swimming by.  

The resort grounds are also rich with land creatures such as monitor lizards, cuscus, even kingfisher birds and sea eagles. Embrace your adventurous side and take a kayak out to the sandbar that appears during low tide, or a hike through the jungles that sit between the two resorts.  

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Wherever you choose to book with us, guests at Papua Diving Resorts can enjoy the community coming together on a shared passion, sharing stories with divers and adventurers alike during mealtimes and excursions.  

CONSERVATION 

By staying at Papua Diving Resorts, you become part of the effort to protect this beautiful yet fragile environment. From offering schooling and sustainable employment for indigenous people, to boosting shark populations, Papua Diving Resort’s aim is to leave this world better than we found it. 

Providing education and training to the local indigenous Papuan villagers is a part of our mission at Papua Diving Resorts, through which they can take the skills and knowledge and apply it to their livelihoods.

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When Max arrived in Raja Ampat, he found a community that depended on shark and ray finning to provide for their families. To encourage a more sustainable approach to earning a living, Max employed and upskilled the locals through teaching them boatbuilding, woodworking and guiding guests to experience all that Paradise has to offer.  

Creating partnerships with locals in the nearby villages, Max sought to provide one-of-a-kind guest experiences to see and photograph the Red and Wilson Bird of Paradise, seen only in Raja Ampat. Aligned with our mission at Papua Diving Resorts to protect nature and empower the local people, a portion of our proceeds go back to these local partnerships. 

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As leaders in conservation and pioneers of sustainable tourism and diving in Raja Ampat, Papua Diving Resorts offers guests an unforgettable opportunity to experience the best of Indonesia’s Crown Jewel. Located at the heart of the Dampier Strait, we invite you to explore the rich biodiversity of the area, both above and underwater. 

BOOK NOW 

Email: info@papua-diving.com  

Website: papua-diving.com  

Instagram: @papuadivingresorts  

Facebook: Papua Diving Resorts 

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