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Diving Talks 2022: A Review by Ellen Cuylaerts



The second edition of ‘Diving Talks’ took place 7th – 9th of October on the beautiful peninsula Tröia, close to Lisbon. Speakers, exhibitors and attendees from around the world met at the Aqualuz Convention Centre for 2 days filled with interesting panels. The organization went for a wide diversity of topics. The concept of this dive conference is that during presentations everyone sits down, is present and can participate in the Q & A at the end.

The pace was easy going and after the pandemic I would call every event a celebration. In this case the celebrations started with the opening of an inaugural exhibition of underwater images at the Bibliotheca Municipal de Grandola. Contributing photographers were Nino Vasques Rodriguez, Brandi Mueller, curator Nuna Sa and myself, Ellen Cuylaerts.

The next day was an ‘industry only’ event, allowing the visiting participants to get familiar with the exhibition and brands supporting the industry in and outside of Portugal. At 6pm, the exhibitors and speakers were invited by the Grandola municipality for return bus trip to Grandola, a familiarization visit with the town, and the opening to the wider public of the underwater imagery exhibition. It felt like a schooltrip and spirits were high!

It is no suprise nor secret that Portugal has a huge potential for growth regarding its diving tourism. The Azores are probably best know for big animal encounters but also Madeira, where at the same time as ‘Diving Talks,’ the World Championship’s for underwater photography was happening. Madeira is a hidden gem: wonderful visibility, wrecks, big schools of fish… a wonderful island full of a diversity of colourful flowers. To me, Portugese people, at least those I’ve met my on past two visits,  truly value life, family, the ocean and nature. 

Arlindo Serrao, the heart and soul of ‘Diving Talks’ and the best walking and talking ambassador for the Portugese waters, organised the Saturday and Sunday programme of very interesting panel discussions  (a total of 10) where participants could make their case in 20 minutes. 

On Saturday evening the congress dinner took place. It was the perfect occasion to connect and unwind after spending already some days together and the storytelling continued, which was a great opportunity for memorable moments. 

I can’t wait for the third edition of ‘Diving Talks’ next year and to experience this event again, probably combined with some excellent diving. Arlindo and Sara are the experts to arrange all that. To the whole team, congratulations!

For a full list of speakers and topics, head to and also check out the Diving Talks YouTube channel here where you will shortly be able to watch all the presentations from the 2022 event for free.

As an underwater and wildlife photographer, Fellow of The Explorers Club and having a front seat in exploration being part of the Flag and Honours Committee, Ellen is also inducted in the Women Divers Hall of Fame. She travels the world and tries to make the most of every destination and the path that leads her there. Ellen acts as an ocean citizen and believes as divers we should all be ocean ambassadors and lead by example! Having lived in Grand Cayman for many years, she now lives in the UK.


The BiG Scuba Podcast Episode 172: Dr. Joseph Dituri



Joseph Dituri

Gemma and Ian chat to Dr. Joseph Dituri. Dr. Jospeh Dituri lived undersea for 100 Days in a mission combining education, ocean conservation research, and the study of the physiological and psychological effects of compression on the human body.  

Dituri enlisted in the U.S. Navy in 1985. He served continuously on active service upon various ships and shore stations where he was involved in every aspect of diving and special operations work from saturation diving and deep submergence to submersible design and clearance diving. Now that he is retired from 28 years of active service to the United States, he is the president of the International Board of Undersea Medicine. He also volunteers his time as the CEO of the Association for Marine Exploration. He is an invited speaker on motivational, sea and space related topics.

Fuelled by his passion for exploration, discovery, adventure, and making the greatest possible positive contribution to the world, he is fighting for change in a big way and with great enthusiasm.

You can listen to Episode 172 of the BiG Scuba Podcast here.

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The BiG Scuba Podcast Episode 171: Kirk Krack & DEEP



Gemma and Ian from the BiG Scuba Podcast recently visited the team at DEEP. Kirk Krack is the Human Diver Performance Lead. This podcast conversation with Kirk was recorded back in 2020 and sets the scene showcasing Kirks diving experience. More information and conversation will be featured in future episodes about DEEP.

In this episode, Gemma and Ian also talk about Dive Fitness, Ian’s Dry suit, an upcoming dive trip to the M2 wreck, and this year’s upcoming Go Diving Show.

You can listen to Episode 171 of the BiG Scuba Podcast here.

Find more podcast episodes and information at the new website and on most social platforms @thebigscuba

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