Jump to content


  • Content Count

  • Joined

  • Last visited

Everything posted by anthp

  1. Michaela and I have recently learned that we have been accepted as the new Conservation Coordinators on the uninhabited Tetepare Island in the Solomon Islands. Obviously, we are both incredibly excited at the prospect! We have several questions which we hope the collective wetpixel wisdom may assist us in answering. Not all the questions are UW photography related, but wetpixel is an amazing resource, so let’s see what we come up with! ïŠ We don't yet have much information on the infrastructure (or lack thereof) available on the island. We will be living in a leaf house with tank water and a pit toilet, so I’m not really expecting a WIFI connection. There may be limited solar power and we are investigation bringing our own portable solar panels. So far on the shopping list we have: Shortwave radio for keeping up to date with news (possibly this one with an external antennae if required. Wide angle lens and Magic Filter for a Fuji F30 (borrowed from parents) – thinking either Inon 105AD or 165 fisheye. I’m leaning towards the 105 because you can use it topside too? The island receives over 5 (!!) metres of rain per year, so it would be good to have a housed compact for terrestrial use. Obviously, I’ll also take my SLR and housing, but sometimes a compact is very handy. Sat phone (Iridium?) with capacity to be used a modem for email with an Apple Mac and maybe PC. Compact waterproof solar panel (this Brunton?) to power the laptop and cameras in the field. Other thoughts?? Now, before everyone starts recommend spending Giga$$$$$ - please keep in mind that we will be paid on local Solomon wages (ie. very little) so we really have to rationalise our spending. There is a small amount of money attached to the project which is partially funded by EU Microprojects, but any expenditure of this money will need to have direct relevance to the project and be approved through various committees etc. The sat phone will likely fit in this category, but the radio and lenses are not relevant to the role. The nearest ‘town’ to the island is Munda which is two hours in the small outboard boats we will be using as transport. Apparently there is internet in Munda as well as availability of modest supplies of groceries. For those of you who have been to Solomons – I would be especially interested in any thoughts on anything you think might be relevant. I would love to have a skype conversation with any recent visitors who have the time to chat to us. Finally, if anyone wants to come and visit us, the eco-lodge on the island is available for a mere AUD$40/night which includes food! We’d love to meet you. All funds generated through visitors are put back into the Tetepare project and used to support local communities by creating employment and training opportunities and ensuring resources are managed sustainably. Thanks for your help everyone!!
  2. I tend to agree with mchief...not that I've actually done a liveaboard at Sipadan, but I can't really see the advantage. We stayed at Kapalai and thought it was wonderful. One advantage was the unlimited shorediving and snorkelling at Kapalai. And we got two dives at Sipadan every day (over 10 days). I'm be interested to know why anyone would recommend a liveaboard?
  3. I agree loftus that this may happen in the longer term, but to my knowledge none of the current crop of cameras actually alter the original RAW - they only produce a JPG with changed processing parameters. So Eric's audit will still presumably detect photoshop or in camera mods.
  4. Hey mate - I'm from Oz, but not really near you - Melbourne in fact. Had a WA great time tho - even proposed to soon to be wife at Margaret River.
  5. There is a HUGE difference between freshwater water trickling onto the top of camera and it actually sitting immersed in salt water as a result of a housing flood. I was caught in some fairly torrential downpours on the south coast of New Zealand and my D200 was fine, but I'd be astonished if survived immersion in even an inch of water in the bottom of a housing. I imagine much the same would apply to the E3. It is about the pressure and period of exposure to water. Think about it this way... water actually pressing against the little rubber gaskets for a long time vs a short droplet running over a gasket. With rain or even big water drops from a bottle, the period of exposure and the pressure is far less than that experienced in immersion conditions. I would rate the sealing as very low criterion in my camera choice decision list. Before attempting to analyse the differences here I'd be considering things like IQ, lens availability, viewfinder, autofocus ability, housing choices and ergonomics. Perhaps you've already considered those things, but either way, I don't think you can realistically expect either camera to "survive a good leak inside a housing" - sorry.
  6. Hi there Vincent! Welcome to Wetpixel. I went diving in Malaysia (Sipadan and Perhentians) a couple of years ago and loved it. You are very fortunate to live in such a great place. As far as posting photos, my suggestion is to start a flickr.com account (free) and then you can follow the instructions here: http://wetpixel.com/forums/index.php?showtopic=15473 to post photos. This is the best way to do, because the pics display nice and big. You can also link to photos from your own website if you have one. Otherwise, you can just attach one or two pics into a post by uploading them to wetpixel, but then they will only be a very small thumbnail you have to click to see. Good luck and I look forward to seeing your shots.
  7. Nice one Steve - you've got some great stuff on there!
  8. Might not be a bad idea to come back in 19 days actually Dean. Sounds like the MBPs might be due for a refurb. http://buyersguide.macrumors.com/#MacBook_Pro You could potentially either get a new one with updated specs for same price, or a just superseded one for less. Either way a potentially good outcome if you can hold out for a few weeks. Of course, if you need it now, then go jump in. You never know with these sorts of predictions, rumors are only that - no guarantees.
  9. I have just read all the posts in this thread since its inception. It has been a fascinating discussion indeed. Some of the views on manipulation do not sit well with me, but I applaud the concern for ecological well being, which presumably underlies the fervour. Like many of us on wetpixel, I trained as marine ecologist. If I witness behaviour which I believe to be harmful, I generally attempt to diplomatically question the person about whether they have considered the implications of their interaction. If the interaction involved moving a seastar, I probably wouldn't bother other than to suggest returning the critter to its original location. But if it involved intentional coral breakage, I'd certainly feel compelled to 'have a conversation' although I do take the point about live aboard confines. Other degrees of manipulation such as prodding, poking and flashing are really too ambiguous for me to generalise about. Perhaps it is like pornography - "One knows it when one sees it." Personally, I was disturbed last year by the actions of a dive guide I witnessed at Mabul. The guide called me over and then proceeded to bend a gorgonian out of shape almost double, to expose a pygmy for me to photograph. It was my first dive with this particular guide. My waving and head shaking elicited profound confusion in the guide underwater, but we had a useful topside discussion afterwards and he graciously modified his behaviour on subsequent dives. Perhaps I should have had the conversation before the dive, but the general principles espoused by the resort included 'no touch' policies which were clearly applied in the loosest possible sense. I have no doubt that the reason he mauled the gorgonian was because he had been previously rewarded for it. As noted earlier, it certainly isn't the guide's fault when poor behaviours are reinforced by tips. Personally, I find it a challenge to reconcile the view that a slight movement of a seastar or the accidental touch of coral is heresy, but that there is no problem in living the lifestyle common to those of us lucky enough call any developed country home. The former has a relatively small impact, whereas the latter has potentially far greater consequences. I cannot claim to be immune to the trappings of the developed countries. After all, I'm typing this on a computer as Drew noted above. We also have an air-conditioner in our rented flat and I'll probably run it when I get home tonight (the outside temperature today is 42C/108F). Our power comes through the grid, but we choose to pay extra to the electricity company to invest the equivalent of our consumption in solar generation to feed into the grid. I waste fuel flying overseas (like Drew and many others) at least once a year for diving, but I always offset my flights and voluntarily donate time and photos from the trips to environmental NGOs with a view helping them with their causes. I have been vegetarian (almost - see below) for more than a decade, but if I was being really good, I could choose to only eat locally sourced produce to minimise the carbon footprint further. I choose not to eat meat because I know the consuming it is a primary cause behind many of the bigger issues affecting our oceans raised such as global warming, chemical runoff, coastal sedimentation and eutrophication. The FAO agrees and are looking at strategies to mitigate the damage. I work with a fisheries management agency in Australia and although I love seafood, I hardly ever eat fish. I only eat from fisheries I understand well and I'm very conscious of the fishing methods used. This year, the sum total of my seafood intake has been two snapper. Why did I eat them? Because I know the population in Port Phillip Bay is currently booming. The abundance is not governed by fishing or lack thereof but rather environmental and habitat factors are far more important. I know that there is almost zero bycatch with the hook and line methods used. I also know that because it is locally caught, the food miles are very low. Will I eat it next year? I don't know, I'm constantly reassessing. In other cases where I don't know the fisheries in sufficient detail or I know enough to know most things are a poor choice, I choose not to eat any seafood at all. For example, even in the best managed prawn/shrimp trawl fisheries in the world, a typical bycatch is 10 tonnes (sometimes double) of unwanted turtles/fish/invertebrates caught and killed for every 1 tonne of prawns. If that is the best case, I can't justify any prawns anywhere, even though I dearly love them. As Drew suggests, it is about the degree of contribution/sacrifice we are all prepared to make. And it is also about awareness of the implications and context of our decisions. I don't think it is reasonable to apply the same standards I choose to apply to myself, to those in developing countries. I am lucky that I have the money and the dietary flexibility to make the choice to not eat meat or seafood and can easily source a balanced diet without these components. On the flip side, I support subsistence fisherman in developing countries using their natural resources as food. I will go out of my way to assist them to use the most sustainable methods possible, but to deny them access without providing an alternative form of food/income is unreasonable and cannot be effectively enforced anyway. What frustrates me, is the decision by some to not consider the broader implications of actions such as food/travel when they are in a position to choose, while at the same time condemning minor actions (such as moving a seastar) which in the broader scheme have little or no consequence. As others have noted, it is about the degree of hypocrisy. That said, I think espousing responsible behaviours in the water such as minimising harmful marine life manipulation can only be a positive. We should all strive to have minimal impacts on the environments we cherish. I believe though, that any principles should be couched in the context of broader impacts on the environment and the consideration of all the actions we as individuals make, which affect the ecosystems we love and on which we depend. So with this background I propose an idea. I see this debate on manipulation as a segue into discussions about the bigger issues that Drew, Paul and giftie have raised and what kinds of steps we can take to mitigate them. Perhaps we can all diffuse into our respective communities and attempt to provide information to the diving and broader community (which is tough without being seen as didacts ramming dogma down people's throats) about making informed choices and thinking about the way we interact with the world in general. I also heartily endorse the sentiment proposed earlier regarding avoiding magazines/books/photographers/movies which elevate shots of manipulated/damaged wildlife to brilliance. I don't personally have the experience to spot every instance, but would be delighted to learn. It is only through this forum that I learned of the IMAX indiscretions described above.
  10. Great video Pakman. I loved the snapper sequence. Music was cool too - did you compose it?
  11. Thanks for the review Joel - very interesting. I like the idea of the port cap. Should save some dust getting inside the housing. Look forward to hearing how you go when you get it wet. Would also be interested to hear about buoyancy with various port/arm configurations. Thanks again.
  12. Bit late to the party - Merry Christmas all and a happy new year!
  13. Welcome back Mike! And once again congratulations Dean, but man - you're one strange dude talkin about hirsute karate experts!
  14. Well done Dean! Congratulations due again I see.
  15. Love the set mate! Just been browsing through your Fiji work too - superb. The sunballs in the channel islands series are particularly well handled. The kelp wide angles really give me a sense of being there. No's 15, 20, 25, 29, 31, 33-35 are among my favourites, but the are all great.
  16. Glad to see my thread has taken on a life of its own. Looking forward to reading any more info from others in the know - this is still very definitely on the list for future adventures.
  17. I'd also be interested in this Don. The Ikelite handles are quite heavy on their own and I suspect with a lighter handle, my D200 housing may actually be pretty close to neutral with the 8" and only slightly negative with a macro. Has anyone actually tried the ULCS tray that Don mentions on an Ikelite DSLR housing?
  18. Second request for a 'tube from a bloke from downunder.
  19. My recollection is no, but it could be because it was raining a bit when we were there. Love your idea of Kerala houseboats in Palau!! Someone should really implement that.
  20. my vote for 2 too! great shot.
  21. Hey Martin - at least you saw a manta! James - I love that first image. The water looks fantastic and the anemones are very pleasingly lit.
  22. Hi Simon, My suggestion is to encourage Zoe to have a go at the viewfinder. I too was a little apprehensive about using one underwater, but as an earlier posted has suggested, it really becomes quite natural. I now can't imagine wanting to look at anything other than the real (ie. hasn't gone through a computer) image through a viewfinder. The few instances where a liveview may have been useful have not been underwater. It has been when holding the camera above my head for extra height and even then, because the screen doesn't tilt - I doubt there would have been any advantage over my current 'wave it in the right direction' technique Good luck with your very generous gift!
  23. Wow! Thanks yellowtang! That is really handy advice. That way, we can pick up a cheap fare to Singapore on Tiger which is offering some great deals and then hang out there for a couple of days while we book a flight to Male. Do you know how heavily booked they are and which airlines we should target? How realistic is it to book with such short notice. Is there an agent you can PM me the details for? Thanks again.
  24. Totally agree with Newbie - I took the same route. Skip the 6"
  • Create New...