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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.

Marine Life & Conservation

UK Shark Fin ban moves closer to becoming law

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Bite-Back Shark & Marine Conservation’s relentless campaigns to make Britain shark fin-free reached a new milestone last week when a private member’s bill to ban the import and export of shark fins was voted through parliament with unanimous cross-party support.

The bill is now scheduled for three readings in the House of Lords and, if successful, it will then go to King Charles for Royal Ascent and become law.

Campaign director for Bite-Back, Graham Buckingham, said:

“Our goal of ending Britain’s ties with the global shark fin trade is within our reach. This country has a dark history of exporting around 20 tonnes of shark fins every year and it remains legal to bring up to 20kg of dried shark fins through Customs without needing to declare it. This bill could represent a significant blow to the multi-million-pound shark fin industry. It’s now down to the House of Lords to smooth its path to the palace.”

Since July 2022 the charity has been consulting the Labour MP Christina Rees who put forward the private member’s bill after the government failed to bring its Animal Welfare Bill, that promised to ban the import and export of shark fins, into law last year.

To help improve support for the bill, Bite-Back also created a briefing document on the issues for all MPs to reference. During the bill’s final reading in the House of Commons MPs from different parties wholeheartedly endorsed the ban on the import and export of shark fins.

In her closing statement Christina Rees MP said that she hoped this bill would ‘drive up the standards of global shark conservation’.

Bite-Back will now turn its attention to educating and inspiring members of the House of Lords to vote in favour of a ban.

Follow the bill’s progress at www.bite-back.com and learn how you can get involved in supporting shark conservation initiatives in the UK.

Header image: Finned sharks underwater- Copyright – Scubazoo.

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Dive Travel Adventures Winter 2023 out now!

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Join us on some of the most spectacular and exciting Dive Travel Adventures worldwide!

The latest issue of Scubaverse’s printed premium quality, quarterly publication, Dive Travel Adventures, is available now. After an extended hiatus due to world events, we’re delighted to be back bigger and better than ever before as we share with you the Winter 2023 edition.

Packed full of incredible photography and first person travel experiences, Dive Travel Adventures will inspire you to put on your scuba gear and explore more of the underwater world. From amazing marine encounters to edge of your seat expeditions across the planet, Dive Travel Adventures offers you an insight into the hottest and coolest dive travel destinations the world has to offer. Get ready to tick some incredible Dive Travel Adventures off your wish list!

In the new Winter 2023 edition of Dive Travel Adventures:

BAHAMAS
Nick and Caroline’s long-held dreams of epic Tiger Shark encounters come to fruition on their return trip to Grand Bahama.

MEXICO
Black Manta Photography take a trip to Mexico’s Caribbean coast for a twin centre holiday that showcases the incredible underwater diversity of Cozumel and Playacar.

TRAVEL GUIDE: AZORES
Into the Blue: Hovering around the dramatically beautiful mid-Atlantic archipelago with Daniel Brinckmann.

FUERTEVENTURA
Yo-Han Cha takes a short flight to the Canary Island of Fuerteventura for a week of relaxed diving and some winter sun.

LUNDY ISLAND
Lundy Island offers an off the beaten track experience along with fantastic scenery above and below the waterline. Jane Morgan explores.

SNORKELING SCOTLAND
Nick and Caroline take advantage of the international travel hiatus to seek out some underwater highlights a little closer to home.

PALAU
Jay Clue heads to Palau to discover what makes this spectacular Pacific archipelago one of the most diverse dive destinations on our planet.

JORDAN
Sean Chinn returns to Aqaba for the scuttling of a Lockheed L-1011 Tristar Plane.

EGYPT
After many a difficult time with suspended flights and then the COVID pandemic, Sharm el Sheikh is firmly back on the map for UK divers. Nick and Caroline head out to see what’s new.

View or download a digital copy of the WINTER 2023 edition of Dive Travel Adventures HERE.

Want a printed copy? The printed edition of Dive Travel Adventures is available to pick up FREE from dive centres throughout the UK and Ireland now, so make sure you pick up your copy today. See a complete list of stockists HERE.

New outlets where you can pick up Dive Travel Adventures are being added to the list all the time. In addition to being available from dive centres, copies will also be delivered to your door with selected orders from leading manufacturers and retailers. You can also pick up your FREE copy of Dive Travel Adventures at various dive shows and events.

We hope you enjoy reading the latest edition of Dive Travel Adventures! Let us know your thoughts on our new publication in the comments below!

Keep up to date with all things #DTA on our Dive Travel Adventures Facebook page and on Instagram.


Look out for the Spring 2023 edition of Dive Travel Adventures coming soon!

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