Dakuwaqa's Dream - HD Video of Scuba Diving in Fiji

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A video I shot while scuba diving in Fiji as video pro aboard the Nai'a liveaboard, featuring underwater caves, deep blue clear water, scuba divers, sea snakes, and colorful coral reefs exploding with tropical fish and other marine life.

My previous video from the Fiji Islands and Tonga, Dakuwaqa's Garden, was cut fast and to the beat of the music. As a result it contained around 100 short clips in 5 minutes. For this newer video I slowed down just 8 of those clips to 50% speed using the amazing QTGMC deinterlacing script, and let them run much longer against an ambient music track, Brace For Impact by Skanoir.

Here is a full description of each shot, along with the time code:

00:00 - I made the floaty titles using the Pro Type Titler in Sony Vegas Pro. Lots of crashes but got there in the end.

00:28 - The scuba diver in silhouette at the mouth of an underwater cave was shot during a deep dive at Black Wall, near Lion's Den and Vatu-vai at Wakaya Island, Fiji. We were at about 45-50m depth and I was pinned against the back of the small cave with my wide-angle lens. It's a small cave!

00:42 - The scuba divers in silhouette from below were shot at the amazing sea mount, E6 in Bligh Water. Crystal clear Pacific Ocean water is needed for this type of shot to succeed!

00:54 - Another shot from the same dive as the first clip, near Wakaya Island. This time the scuba divers were exploring the underwater wall as they ascended from the depths. I was right at the back of the crack in the wall, waiting for them to pass.

01:14 - The school of bigeye trevally, Caranx sexfasciatus, was shot at the Grand Central Station site at North Save-a-Tack passage in the Namena Marine Reserve. This was my favorite dive site in Fiji. We would start the dive in deep blue water amongst sharks and schools of pelagic fish, and end the dive on the beautiful shallow coral reef of Kansas. These trevallies were one of the regular highlights of this amazing dive site.

01:50 - I shot this banded sea krait, Laticauda colubrina, (also known as a "yellow-lipped sea krait" or "banded sea snake") at Jim's Alley at Gau Island. I love shooting sea snakes because it challenges steady camera work, framing and tracking skills. The sea snakes almost always ignore divers. I thought this one looked perfect against the colorful background of soft corals on the reef.

02:42 - Many of the reefs in Fiji are covered in spectacular corals and marine life. Maytag, at the Vatu-i-ra barrier reef, is one of the very best. The diversity of life in this clip is breathtaking. The reef is covered in soft corals, Dendronephthya sp., and mushroom leather corals, Sarcophyton Trocheliophorum, inhabited by schools of colorful lyretail anthias, Pseudanthias squamipinnis, and magenta slender anthis, Luzonichthys waitei. Amongst numerous other tropical fish, a pair of Pacific sailfin tang, Zebrasoma veliferum, were swimming along the reef and can be seen clearly at 03:35. This shot, as well as the others, can be licensed as stock footage.

04:13 - This was shot during my safety stop at the end of a dive at Coral Corner at the Vatu-i-ra barrier reef. The reef here is covered in pristene yellow leather corals, Sarcophyton elegans.

04:38 - Re-entering the Nai'a's skiff at the end of the dive :)

In case you wondered, Dakuwaqa is a shark-god from Fijian mythology.

The footage was shot in high definition HDV 1080i 60i with my Sony HVR-Z1P HDV camera in a Light & Motion Bluefin HD housing.

Sea Shepherd Conservation Society
Nick Hope