May 2020 Video Contest Winner and Review

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WINNER CHOSEN AND REVIEW BY SCUBAVERSE.COM’S EDITOR-AT-LARGE AND RESIDENT UNDERWATER VIDEOGRAPHY EXPERT JEFF GOODMAN

Winner: Bunaken National Park by Pim van Schendel

Winning Video:

As soon as this lockdown is over I am going to find the biggest air tank and sit at 25′ for as long as possible and just soak it up.

Hope you are all well and keeping safe. One thing about lockdown is it has given me the incentive and time, to sort out all my old video material which has been a job long overdue. It’s been fun looking back on all the past years of diving. Here are my thoughts on this month’s video entries:

Floating Freely by Catrin Pichler

Watch Catrin’s video here.

Beautiful images with perfect music. What a stunning experience. Loved all of your shots which were sharp, well framed and nicely exposed all in quite difficult conditions with the viz and current. The Butterfly fish pecking on the black manta were delightful.

Clowning around in Marsa Shagra by Mick Crowley

Watch Mike’s video here.

This little video just goes to show how important the choice of music is to any production. The images of the clownfish on their own are quite simple, although nicely shot, but it is the addition of the soft guitar that creates a tranquil mood that make the viewer relax and enjoy the beauty of the fish. Great film.

Squid Ballet by Catrin Pichler

Watch Catrin’s video here.

First thing to say is how well the music fit the images. The soft piano accentuated the gentle and flowing movements of the squid. Very Science fiction. Loved it. Camera work is spot on with good sharp, steady well framed and exposed shots.

Diving Meno Slope, Gili Meno by Albino Titan Triggerfish – Beat Travels

Watch Beat Travel’s video here.

Nice camera moves in the boat and very nice effective plunge into the water. No messing about. The following underwater images were very well filmed. Clear and sharp. The identification  captions at the bottom of the screen were a great touch and added immensely to the overall enjoyment of the film. The Paddle-Flap Scorpionfish was a real treat. The Albino Titan Triggerfish was indeed a good draw to the video but I was slightly disappointed that there was only one shot of it. I was expecting more. On this note, although the film was good to watch, I think it would have benefited from a short story rather than a straight forward catalogue of animal snapshots.

Bunaken National Park by Pim van Schendel

Watch Pim’s video here.

Thanks for the written intro. Makes a big difference to what I am looking at. Excellent pace and tempo to the opening shots with well timed edits to the music. The rest of the video followed in the same way. A real pleasure to watch. Lovely camera work. Steady and well framed. The scorpionfish  with the turtle was a great find and the timing for it swimming off was perfect. You captured some brilliant animal behaviour and managed to edit it all in a concise and clever way, The Octopus at the end was amazing.


And the Winner is….

Portrait or snapshot videos can be good and do have a place in any viewing gallery, especially if they are accompanied with suitable and complimentary music. They can also become a little predictable, even if every individual shot is a masterpiece. But if you can go just a step further and do two or three shots of each animal, then you begin to tell a story which can be far more captivating. Bunaken National Park by Pim van Schendel did just this and so is this month’s winner.

Stay safe everyone, Won’t be too long before we are allowed to go diving again.

Jeff Goodman

Jeff Goodman

Jeff Goodman is the Conservation editor and also the Underwater Videography Editor for Scubaverse.com. Jeff is an award winning TV wildlife and underwater cameraman and film maker. With over 10,000 dives to his credit he has dived in many different environments around the world.

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