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Capturing Critters in Lembeh Underwater Photography Workshop 2024: Event Roundup

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The 11th annual Capturing Critters in Lembeh Underwater Photography Workshop has just wrapped at Lembeh Resort in North Sulawesi, Indonesia! What an incredible workshop it was – following the usual format of not just one host Photo Pro but four! Lembeh Resort’s three visiting Photo Pros, Saeed Rashid, Alex Tattersall & Nicolas Remy (plus Lembeh Resort’s in house pro) did an incredible job of keeping participants inspired and striving for their best shots throughout the week.

As usual the Capturing Critters workshop was packed with daily presentations, one-on-one sessions with the pros, incredible dives and critters in the Lembeh Strait.

critters

Photo: Michael Wanke

Lembeh Resort’s inhouse team, including our marine biologist and dive guides also spent time with participants, sharing their wealth of knowledge about the unique marine life and critter behaviour to be found in the Lembeh Strait. Dive Center Manager, Brigitte Gassner, delivered slick organization and coordination of a busy schedule, while the resort team ensured that guests were well looked after and enjoyed phenomenal dining in between dives and presentations.

Critter sightings this year were above and beyond with some of Lembeh’s most iconic critters putting on phenomenal behavioral displays for participants. Some of the most notable stars of the week included blue ring octopus, sargassum frogfish, pygmy seahorses, tiger shrimp, rhinopias, hairy frogfish, hairy octopus, mimic octopus, wunderpus, beautiful soft coral cowries and a host of different nudibranch species.

critters

Photo: Jeffrey Sankoff

During presentations, participants learned from the pros about a number of topics from basic image composition, focus and lighting through to techniques to reduce backscatter and post dive editing in Lightroom.

Capturing Critters in Lembeh 2025

The Capturing Critters Workshop goes from strength to strength each year and the images produced in each annual workshop continue to portray why the Lembeh Strait is a world famous destination for muck divers and underwater photographers. In 2025 Lembeh Resort will be hosting three more world-class Photo Pros: Ron Watkins (USA), Paul Duxfield (UK), and Renee Capozzola (USA). The week-long workshop will once again be packed with incredible diving, Pro presentations, and one-on-one instruction and feedback.

critters

Photo: Patrick Sheehan

The Capturing Critters 2025 workshop will be Lembeh Resort’s 12th annual workshop and takes place from January 11th – 17th 2025. Take a look at what’s in store and contact Lembeh Resort for more information or to make a reservation: reservations@LembehResort.com

A word from the Pros….

QUOTE FROM SAEED RASHID:

The workshop went really well. This is my second time hosting the capturing quitters event – I was here in 2020. I was amazed by how slickly this this really busy workshop is put together and yet again this year. We look at the schedule and it seems really busy but then everything just slots into place. As pros, we host two presentations a day, make three dives and everyone at the end of it has improved their pictures no end.

Lembeh Resort is the most perfect resort to host this type of event. It has enough room not only to accommodate all the all the guests but there is also a vast camera room and fantastic AV facilities for the pro presentations. Lembeh Resort is the ideal place to host the Capturing Critters Workshop.

I really think the participants got a lot out of this. Not only did they have constant access to the three imported pros, that’s myself, Nicholas and Alex, but they also had the in house photo pro here with a fantastic Backscatter Authorised Photo Centre where they had the ability to hire kit ,to try out kit and just get really hands on with not only the diving, but all of the equipment combined with all of our expert knowledge.

Read more about Saeed and view his portfolio here: https://www.focusvisuals.com/

critters

Photo: Saeed Rashid

QUOTE FROM NICOLAS REMY:

During the workshop we had quite a big group with different skill sets. Some participants were beginners and there were some very experienced photographers, but I think everyone got something out of it. Feedback from participants was that having three different photographers, Saeed, Alex and myself, teaching and sharing the way we do things really helped them and it was interesting observing the different ways of working underwater. I have seen the participant photographers steadily improve during the week, meaning that their photos got better and better. I’ve seen a number of their photos that I wish I would have taken myself!

Lembeh Resort is always a great place for hosting this sort of workshop because we have dive guides who have an exposure to photography – most of them are photographers themselves, so they know how to help us find subjects that are well positioned. There’s also a Backscatter Authorised Photo Centre with equipment to rent and I’ve seen quite a few participants taking advantage of this and renting snoots and accessories. The Photo Center does a great job in supporting everyone’s creativity and ability to try new techniques.

Read more about Nicolas and view his portfolio here: https://www.nicolaslenaremy.com/

critters

Photo: Nicolas Remy

QUOTE FROM ALEX TATTERSALL:

The workshop has been brilliant. We’ve had so much fun, so many amazing images and it couldn’t have gone better. Lembeh Resort is ideal for this kind of workshop – it’s a very warm place to be. The schedule was very well put together and we had enough time in the water and enough time in between dives to spend time with the participants. We’ve had amazing experiences with the dive guides who found all the critters you could ever ask for.

One of the other things that I think is very special about this workshop is the fact that there were three of us (pros) teaching me all sides of underwater photography and the complementary angles and approaches that all of us have to underwater photography and each of the participants were able to benefit from different things. We had various different levels from very beginners up to very accomplished photographers. And every I would say that every single one of them took away an awful lot of learning and experience.

It was great to see how participants also benefit from looking at how other people photograph particular subjects and how that inspires them to go down and try that kind of technique. I would say that these are just some of the key things which make this a very special experience for everyone involved, including us.

Read more about Alex and view his portfolio here: https://www.uwvisions.com/

critters

Photo: Alex Tattersall

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Marine Life & Conservation

Save the Manatee Club launches brand new webcams at Silver Springs State Park, Florida

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Save the Manatee® Club has launched a brand-new set of underwater and above-water webcams at Silver Springs State Park in Ocala, FL. These new cameras add to our existing cameras at Blue Spring State Park in Orange City, Florida, and Ellie Schiller Homosassa Springs Wildlife State Park, in Homosassa, Florida, which are viewed by millions of people worldwide. The cameras are a collaboration between Save the Manatee Club, Explore.org, and the Florida Department of Environmental Protection, who made the new live streaming collaboration possible via support of their interpretative program.

The above-water camera is a stationary pan/tilt/zoom camera that will show manatees and other wildlife from above water, while the new underwater camera provides the viewer with a brand new, exciting 180-degree viewing experience. Viewers can move the cameras around, trying to spot various fish and manatees.

The Silver River, which originates at Silver Springs, provides important habitat for manatees and many other species of wildlife. Over recent years, more manatees have been seen utilizing the Silver and Ocklawaha rivers. “The webcams provide a wonderful entertainment and educational tool to the general public, but they also help us with the manatee research,” says Patrick Rose, Executive Director of Save the Manatee Club. “We have learned so much through observing manatees on our existing webcams, and the new cameras at Silver Spring can add to the existing manatee photo-ID research conducted in this area, as well as highlighting Silver Springs and the Silver River as an important natural habitat for manatees.”

The webcams are streaming live during the daytime, with highlights playing at night, and can be viewed on Explore.org and on Save the Manatee Club’s website at ManaTV.org.

Save the Manatee Club, established in 1981 by the late renowned singer-songwriter, author, and entrepreneur Jimmy Buffett, along with former Florida Governor and U.S. Senator Bob Graham, is dedicated to safeguarding manatees and preserving their aquatic habitat. For more information about manatees and the Club’s efforts, visit savethemanatee.org or call 1-800-432-JOIN (5646).

Photo: www.avalon.red

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Dive Worldwide introduces three new resorts ahead of Go Diving Show

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Ahead of Go Diving (2-3 March, Stoneleigh Park), the leading scuba diving exhibition that marks the start of the dive season, Dive Worldwide has introduced three new resorts, each one set in a world class diving location. Among them is Coral Eye Resort in Indonesia, an eco-friendly island retreat with a welcoming community vibe where like-minded people get excited about the marine world and all its wonders.

Dive Worldwide has the largest programme in the UK of tailor-made and small group liveaboard and resort-based diving holidays to over 200 destinations worldwide, catering for beginners and experienced divers alike.

NEW RESORTS

Coral Eye Resort, Bangka Island, Indonesia

Founded as an outpost for marine studies, Coral Eye is a boutique resort on Bangka Island, east of Sumatra, which has been transformed into a diver’s paradise. Today Coral Eye, set in the heart of the Coral Triangle, attracts a community of visitors who share a passion for the sea. Its eco-friendly villas are designed to blend seamlessly into the natural surroundings.

From Coral Eye and the Coral Eye Dive Centre, it is possible to discover more than 30 world-class dive sites– each within 40 minutes of the beachfront dive centre – along with the fascinating volcanic topography and varied marine life around Bangka Island in North Sulawesi. From the beautiful house reef to steep coral-covered pinnacles, charming critters, turtles, and abundant reef fish, there is something for everyone to enjoy. Dives, up to four per day, are guided in groups of four by local guides with a wealth of experience and keen eyes.

Price: 9 nights at Coral Eye Resort from £2,775pp based on 2 sharing including Full board, transfer, 10 dives, tanks and weights

The Fives Beach Hotel and Residences, Mexico

This resort is an oceanfront haven where luxury meets adventure. Against a backdrop of lush greenery and a white sand coast in Playa del Carmen, The Fives Beach Hotel’s location in Riviera Maya provides access to a plethora of renowned dive sites, including the Mesoamerican Barrier Reef and the world-famous Cenotes.  Within the resort is The Fives Dive Centre with its range of SSI courses, from beginner to advanced.  Guests can dive with eagle rays and look for a splendid toadfish in Cozumel. Puerto Morelos has such a cool vibe above the water, but below the surface the National Park is also the best the Caribbean has to offer.

With a diverse range of accommodation, choose from stylish rooms with balconies to vibrant suites and oceanfront residences providing more privacy and a panorama of the Caribbean Sea. Beyond diving, guests can indulge in the hotel’s array of restaurants, relax with a cocktail by one of the hotel’s seven outdoor pools, explore the vibrant local culture at the nearby Mayan ruins or enjoy the hotel’s numerous cultural offerings.

Price: 7 nights at The Fives Beach Hotel and Residences costs from £3,145pp based on 2 sharing, all inclusive, including 8 ocean dives and 2 cenotes dives, tanks, weights and transfers

Aventuras Club – Mexico

Located in Puerto Aventuras, these stylish marina and lagoon view apartments, each with tasteful Caribbean interiors, are the perfect location for an ocean and Cenotes diving adventure. The 19 marina apartments offer views over the marina, while eight luxury lagoon apartments overlook a private bay in the lagoon and benefit from a small private beach and a swimming pool.

Diving the magical caves and passages of the world-famous Cenotes in Mexico is conducted with Maya Blue Dive Centre while ocean dives are provided through a local dive centre. The Mesoamerican reef system along the Riviera Maya is home to colourful coral gardens and marine life aplenty, providing an exciting and varied week of diving experiences including plenty of hawksbill turtle encounters.  Travel between June and September and add in a snorkelling trip to see the incredible gathering of whale sharks around Holbox Island or Isla Mujeres.

Price: The Cenotes & Reefs dive trip costs from £2,095pp based on 2 sharing including  7 nights at Aventuras Club, 6 ocean dives, 2 Cenotes dives, Tanks and weights and transfers.

For further information visit Dive Worldwide (diveworldwide.com, 01962 302087).

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Experience the Red Sea in May with Bella Eriny Liveaboard! As the weather warms up, there’s no better time to dive into the crystal clear waters of the Red Sea. Join us on Bella Eriny, your premier choice for Red Sea liveaboards, this May for an unforgettable underwater adventure. Explore vibrant marine life and stunning coral reefs Enjoy comfortable accommodation in our spacious cabins Savor delicious meals prepared by our onboard chef Benefit from the expertise of our professional dive guides Visit our website for more information and to secure your spot: www.scubatravel.com/BellaEriny or call 01483 411590 More Less

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