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Take part in the Celebrate the Sea Festival in Manado in 2018

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Ocean Geographic has announced the 13th Celebrate the Sea Festival in Manado, North Sulawesi from 31 March to 4 April 2018. Previously staged in association with the World Festival of Underwater Pictures, (Le Festival Mondial de l’Image Sous-Marine – Marseille) from 2002 to 2013, Celebrate the Sea was known as one of the most significant underwater photographic events in the world outside Europe. The 2018 festival in Manado will take place in conjunction with the 5th annual ‘Ocean Geographic Pictures of the Year’ competition.

The festival will open on 31 March 2018 with a full-day keynote conference by a panel of international speakers, together with an opening ceremony hosted by the provincial government of North Sulawesi. Past presenters at Celebrate the Sea include some of the world’s most prominent luminaries in underwater imaging and science, including: Stan Waterman, David Doubilet, Jennifer Hayes, Ron & Valerie Taylor, Dr Sylvia Earle, Dr Phil Nyutten, Howard and Michele Hall, Peter Scoones, Dr Gerry Allen, Emory Kristof, Michael AW, Dr Carden Wallace, Dr Lindsay Porter, Howard Shaw, Neville Coleman, Leandro Blanco and Dr Mark Erdmann to name just a few. Without doubt, the luminaries for 2018 will be equally impressive.

The principal highlight of the 2018 festival is the international underwater shoot-out competition. With cash and holiday prize monies value at around USD 35,000 spread over five categories, it may be the most lucrative shoot-out competition in the world. The overall winner will be named ‘Master of the Competition’ with a cash bounty of IDR 66 million (about USD 5,000). Prizes are funded by the provincial government of Manado and supporting resorts of the North Sulawesi Watersports Association.

Competition participants can submit entries into the five categories taken on a maximum of 10 qualifying dives in their chosen supporting resort from 1-3 April. Cameras must be set to the correct Manado time and date before diving commences. Only material from up to 10 dives can be submitted to the competition. Participants can arrive earlier, or undertake more than 10 dives between 1-3 April, to be arranged directly with their chosen resort.

The mission of the 13th Celebrate the Sea Festival uses the power of pictures to inspire conservation and protection of the ocean environment. The 2018 festival will be used as a platform to call for the ban of shark fins in restaurants and to work towards eliminating single-use plastic in North Sulawesi. The provincial government supports these initiatives. The festival in Manado will celebrate the splendour and richness of the marine bio-diversity of Bunaken National Marine Park, Bangka Island and the Lembeh Strait, with the underlying objective being to spotlight threats from climate change and pollution.

Highlights of the festival weekend will also include the screening of finalists of the 5th ‘OG Pictures of the Year’ competition and a children’s art competition. The awards ceremony for Celebrate the Sea 2018 will be on 7 April in Singapore.

Find out more about the Celebrate the Sea Festival at www.celebratethesea.oneocean.com.

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Ocean Art 2020 Winners Announced!

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Ocean Art Contest Announces the Best Underwater Photos of the Year

The prestigious Ocean Art Underwater Photo Competition, organized by the Underwater Photography Guide, has announced the best underwater photos this year with its 2020 winners. Despite global travel restrictions and the challenges brought by the Covid-19 pandemic, the 9th annual competition attracted an extremely high caliber of photos from oceans around the world. Underwater explorers captured photos locally, in select destinations currently open to travel, or revisited their archives to bring us some eye-catching photography. This unique assortment of photos could not have been possible without the help of our generous sponsors who have all had to navigate a changing travel and dive industry. Many of these same sponsors helped the Ocean Art competition raise money earlier in this year to raise money to donate to the WHO and CDC in their fight against Covid-19. These photos showcase the perseverance of underwater artistry amidst the adversity of the times.

All the winning photos can be seen at the Underwater Photography Guide at https://www.uwphotographyguide.com/ocean-art-contest-winners-2020

The Best of Show is a once-in-a-lifetime moment of an octopus taking a selfie with the photographer and his curious family in the background. The photo was captured by photographer Gaetano Dario Gargiulo close to his home in the tide pools of Kamay Botany Bay National Park, New South Wales, Australia.  Other extraordinary winners include astonishing scenes of animal behavior, images that bring hope for the next generation of sea creatures, displays of ingenious photographic technique, and conservation scenes that reflect on not just the need to conserve our planet, but our species as well. The judges evaluated thousands of entries from 80 countries before selecting the final set of images as Ocean Art winners.

Ocean Art 2020 judges included prestigious underwater photographers Tony Wu, Mark Strickland, and Marty Snyderman.

Over $45,000 in prizes have be awarded, making the Ocean Art prize value among the highest in the world.

Ocean Art prizes are provided by some of the world’s top scuba diving resorts, liveaboard dive yachts, and underwater photo gear manufacturers. Grand prizes include a choice of 7 or 8 nights for two aboard the Coralia Liveaboard in Raja Ampat or Komodo, a 7 night liveaboard trip on the M.V. Bilikili in the Solomon Islands, a 7-night dive package with Villa Markisa, a 7 night dive package at Siladen Resort & Spa in Bunaken, a 12 night Passport to Paradise with Murex Dive Resorts and Lembeh Resort to three different Indonesian destinations, a 5-night dive vacation with AquaMarine Diving Bali & Ramayana Candidasa, a 7-night dive vacation at Atlantis Philippines Dive Resorts, and a variety of gift certificates from Bluewater Photo and Bluewater Travel. Premium travel prizes are provided by Volivoli Beach Resort (Fiji), Crystal Blue Dive Resort (Philippines), and Solitude Liveaboards & Resorts (Philippines and Indonesia). Premium gear prizes are provided by Sea & Sea and Ikelite. 12 different categories ensure a competitive contest for all levels and disciplines of underwater photography.

The photographic ingenuity from competitors is getting better every year – making judging very difficult and demonstrating that the winning images are some of the best in the world. Bluewater Photo and Bluewater Travel owner and Underwater Photography Guide publisher, Scott Gietler commented, “The Ocean Art team was thrilled to see that so many photographers were able to get out, dive, and immerse themselves in photography this year. The Best of Show was especially impressive. My only concern is that the octopus should get its share of the prize, as it did assist in taking the shot!” 

For more information, please visit http://www.uwphotographyguide.com 

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Gear Reviews

Gear Review: SeaLife SportDiver housing for iPhone (Watch Video)

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In a video shot exclusively for Scubaverse.com, Jeff Goodman reviews the SeaLife SportDiver housing for Apple’s iPhone, used with the Sea Dragon 2500 Light.

For more information about Sealife Underwater Cameras visit the website by clicking here

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