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Winners - Underwater Videography Contests

August 2021 Video Contest Winner and Review




Winner: Secrets of a Trash Filled Harbor by Rowan Hannaway

Winning Video:

Making films for a non commercial market does allow the film maker great latitude and freedom of expression. And that’s what we get this month with such a variety of film styles and techniques. So what makes a good, or not so good, film? Assuming the technical quality is there then the rest is totally subjective and thus it is hard to judge one against another. But this is a competition and I have to pick one. At first I was going to have two winners this month but then as I watched all the films I realised that they were all really good. So, back to one winner. ‘Secrets of a trash filled harbour’ by Rowan Hannaway. Extremely well filmed, scripted and narrated. A stark reminder of what we are doing to the marine world.

Secrets of a trash filled harbour by Rowan Hannaway

Excellent video. Very good narration and script. Such an important storey to tell and a stark reminder of what we are doing to the oceans. Tragic images and ones we should all be thoroughly ashamed of. The surviving wildlife in your film was good to see but oh so much lost. Loved the fact you shot this on your phone camera. Very steady camera work where all the images are sharp, well exposed and very steady. Just goes to show you don’t need expensive cameras to make great videos. The music was perfect.

Deep Dive 6 by divejackdive

Excellent educational video. Would be perfect for schools. Lots of lovely information and stunning wildlife images. All beautifully filmed and edited. The cuttlefish was really nice.

The Colours Of Life by Catrin Pichler

You certainly delivered on the title. Amazing colours of the life in our beautiful oceans. The music fitted perfectly. Crystal clear and well lit images. A visual treat with some fantastic creatures. Your videography is exceptional.

Deep Dive 3 by divejackdive

Same comments as with Deep Dive 6. I assume these are all part of a series and really do feel you could use them for education in schools. Might be a good market for you there.

Deep Dive 4 by divejackdive

Same comments as with Deep Dive 6.and 3.

Unconditional love and hope of life by Steven Taiwan

I just love big close up images of clown fish eggs. Hundreds of little eyes looking up into a new world. Fabulous close up of the adult coming into frame to blow on and air the eggs. So delicate. A real treat to watch. Your macro shots are extremely steady, sharp and well exposed. Liked the underlying music. Great sequence. Well done.

Heal The Ocean by Milena Margaritova

The baby fish in front of the divers mask was just charming and made me smile. The song is perfect. Often if you get the sentiment and the message right then audiences don’t see good or poor images, they just get carried along by the feel of the film. Having said that, I thought your images were really good. Lovely film.

Marine Creatures | Scuba Diving Memoirs – Dahab, Egypt by Milena Margaritova

You used my favourite shot again. Excellent. I enjoyed the various octopus clips. They are such a joy to see and film. All of the reef animals were great. The walking scorpionfish was really in sync with the music. Well done for capturing some good animal behaviour rather that just all portrait shots.

Bangka Island – North Sulawesi by Pim van Schendel

I did like your editing style with the music. Really kept my attention and your sequence structure was extremely good with some fabulous wildlife images, all steady, sharp, well lit and framed.

How to Swim with Turtles by Pete Bucknell

Hi Pete. Such a good film and such an important story to tell. Thank you. Great script and narration. Made me laugh out loud an occasion. Brilliant. The music fitted well and helped to sustain the feel of the narration. Liked the film on the turtle comment……….

The Cave of the Sleeping Sharks by Pete Bucknell

I think your tongue in cheek narration is good fun and turns normal (but good) footage into a memorable story. Good music and nicely edited. The sleeping shark was a nice find. They are usually good tempered when resting up and I was glad to see you didn’t harass it at all to get footage.

Behind the Scenes: The Deepest Man by Pete Bucknell

That was different. Nice to see a behind the scenes film. I know a lot of novice photographers and videographers will love to watch this. One of the secrets of filming these kind of projects is to have a good team with you and it sounds as if that’s just what you had. Very talented model. Great camera work Pete with some stunning images.

The September competition is now open for entries. You can enter up to three videos by clicking here.

Jeff Goodman is the Editor-at-Large for with responsibility for conservation and underwater videography. Jeff is an award-winning TV wildlife and underwater cameraman and film maker who lives in Cornwall, UK. With over 10,000 dives to his credit he has dived in many different environments around the world.

Winners - Underwater Videography Contests

September 2022 Video Contest Winner and Review




Winner: Muck Diving around Manado Bay, Bangka Island and Lembeh Strait in North Sulawesi – Indonesia by Pim van Schendel

Winning Video:

Hi all. So close this month and great to see all the hard work and talent which has gone into every film. People generally never know or appreciate just how much effort goes into making even a short  video. But I know and I can see it in every entry.

As there can only be one winner I, after much deliberation, feel Muck Diving around Manado Bay, Bangka Island and Lembeh Strait in North Sulawesi – Indonesia by Pim van Schendel  has a slight edge on the other entries with some magnificent camera work and lighting.

If you are keen to advance in your film making skills, don’t forget to look at my book

Engelbrechts West Cave by Paul Battersby

Great opening drone and land shots which all told an important part of the story.  Good music too. Lovely dramatic shots and nicely edited. Although it was obviously quite an adventure the video there was no climax to the video and became slightly repetitive. It was crying out for some sort of information. Be it on screen graphics or spoken narration. It would work extremely well as part of a lecture or presentation where someone was speaking over it. Really well filmed and excellent lighting.

Endless blue by Maria Bereozka

Your films make me smile. Nothing special visually but the poetic and heart felt narration is totally captivating. It simply makes me want to dive.

Looking for dinosaurs underwater by Maria Bereozka

Excellent!  Great music choice which fitted perfectly with your narration.

To be free! by Maria Bereozka

I don’t know if there is anything new to say about your films. I’m still smiling at the last one. Again perfect music choice.

Caribbean Night – Creatures of the Dark by Oliver Knopken

Wonderful opening shots on the surface and stunning underwater opening to follow.  Your lighting is perfect and your camera work is very good. I liked the narration and script. I liked the story you were telling but with quite a long film I personally would have liked to have had a bit more information on the animal behaviour you captured so well even though you did sum up so nicely at the end.

Muck Diving around Manado Bay, Bangka Island and Lembeh Strait in North Sulawesi – Indonesia by Pim van Schendel

Beautiful images. Quite stunning. Good steady camera work and very good lighting. You captured some great behaviour esp[decimally with the octopuses. Music works well. Such a fantastic array of marine life. What a wonderful world we live in.

The October competition is now open for entries. You can enter up to three videos by clicking here.

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Winners - Underwater Videography Contests

August 2022 Video Contest Winner and Review




Winner: Seals in the kelp by David Gwyer’

Winning Video:

Hi all. Thanks for taking the time and making the effort to enter your films. As always they were a treat to watch and good to see so much talent out there as well as a great love of the oceans which comes across in all the films.

This month the winner is ‘Seals in the kelp  by David Gwyer’. A lovely story of animal encounter with divers. Well filmed and edited with a lovely personalised script and narration.


If you have not received your prizes for previous months please contact me at and I will look into it for you. We have been having a few issues with supply lately so please bear with us.

My model is an octopus #gopro #underwater #freediving by Maria Bereozka

Hi Maria. Well you have done it again. A great film. If we were to take the video material on it’s own it would be OK but nothing special. When you add your very special spoken story everything changes and becomes totally captivating. I liked the music too. There were just a few occasions where the volume of your narration was a bit too low under the music and I had to concentrate hard to hear what you were saying. You obviously love the marine world so keep on filming and sharing.

Manta Circle Part 7 – The best video on Go Pro with divers from Circle by Maria Bereozka

Nice. Lovely animal. It’s so nice to see a continuous shot with no editing. I felt like I was getting to know the ray quite well as an individual. Good music choice.

Scuba diving in Jackfish Alley dive site Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt by Maria Bereozka

Another goody. Pretty average video material but brought alive with your excellent commentary and choice of music. If you are going to do more filming with scuba, have a think about taking your time with framing and lighting and try a few more close-ups otherwise the film just become a catalogue of images despite the good narration.

Seals in the kelp by David Gwyer

Liked the introduction scene very much. You told a great story with the narration which was accompanied by wonderful underwater video. What a fabulous encounter. Really well filmed and edited and I loved the sentiment. Perfect music too.

Ghost pipefish of North Sulawesi by Pim van Schendel

Perfect written introduction and the following images were excellent. Your macro and close up camera work is very good. Steady, sharp, well exposed and well lit. Lovely film.

The Maldives in 4K HDR, Scuba Dive into the Underwater Beauty of the Indian Oceans Finest Dive Sites by Daniel French

Great drone opening which really set the scene and location. The sharks with the manta and the shoaling fish was quite wonderful as were all of your underwater images. The on screen identification graphics worked well. On a slight negative side, it was quite a long film at 9m30s to be without some sort of story to keep an audience fully engaged, despite the excellent images..

The September competition is now open for entries. You can enter up to three videos by clicking here.

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