The British Society of Underwater Photographers (BSoUP)
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BSoUP's Sponsors

Kungkungan Bay Resort

Winning Imaes by Paul Colley

Cameras Underwater - Sponsor of the BSoUP/DIVER Print Competition 2015 - 2018 and BIUPC 2015 and 2016

Brtish Divers Marine Life Rescue - Sponsors of BSoUP / DIVER Print Competition 2017

Carpe Diem, Sponsors of BUIPC 2017


Diver Magazine - Sponsor of the Annual Beginners Portfolio Competition and the BSoUP/DIVER Print Competition

DiveQuest - Sponsor of the Underwater Excellence

News - March 2015

Please send items for the News to Brian Pitkin

February 2015
News Archive

Website of the Week - Gill McDonald
The International Ocean Film Tour
Website of the Week - Christophe Mason-Parker
New Aqualite Lights winners 2014/15
Natural Light by Nick Blake
Theme Portfolio - Photo Story - Results
Website of the Week - Chico Maggioni
PNW Diver - Latest issue
Next BSoUP Meeeting
Website of the Week - Zac Macaulay
Martin Edge Ambon Workshop March 2014

UwP - Latest issue
NUPG - Next Meeting
BUPG - Next Meeting
Coral Reefs - Secret cities in the sea exhibition
Our World Underwater Competition Winner
British & Irish Underwater Photography Championship
Cover shot - Dougie Souness
Black & White by Rob White
Website of the Week - Keith Lyall
Alex Mustard Masterclass

Gill McDonald
Gill McDonald

Website of the Week - Gill McDonald

"My world is full of water, light and words. I have dived worldwide for 25 years, making pictures for over half that time. My very first open water dive back in 1989 was at Temple in the Red Sea. I will never forget the arid, dusty desert morphing into an explosion of bright, teeming, colour-filled reef and I was immediately hooked.

Underwater photography flickered into my consciousness during a four month marine conservation survey in Belize in the early ‘90s. After subsequently flooding a film camera in the Cayman Islands I thought "right, time to get serious". Some research with Steve Warren at Ocean Optics and pouring over dive magazines later (yes gentle reader, this was pre-Google days) decided me on a Nikonos V and a Martin Edge weekend course in Bournemouth.

That decision led to an ongoing journey of discovery, breath-taking beauty, a career u-turn, lifelong friendships and a passion for underwater photography and writing that has seeped into my every pore to become an integral part of my life.

I consider myself very fortunate to have a large, varied and immensely talented group of friends around the world who share my joy and wonder at the fabulous, mesmerising underwater world. Many, like me, do their best to raise awareness of the need for conservation and protection of this incredibly valuable and highly threatened natural resource that covers seven tenths of the earth.

I am incredibly excited to be launching my new Beginners Underwater Photography course which is the result of years of experience and a strong desire to share this wonderful underwater adventure. I obtained an adult teaching qualification (PTLLS 3) in January 2014 to give me the best grounding to teach people who are keen to learn."

The International Ocean Film Tour

The International Ocean Film Tour is back and set to visit five cities across the UK.

Plymouth  Friday, 15 May - 20:00 (Doors open 19.30) - Roland Levinsky Lecture Theatre 1, Plymouth Uni.
London  Sunday, 17 May -  18:00 (Doors open 17.30) - The Rocket Complex, London Met Uni 
Bristol  Tuesday, 19 May - 20:00 (Doors open 19.30) - St. George's Bristol 
Glasgow Thursday, 21 May - 20:00 (Doors open 19.30) - The Mitchell Theatre 
Edinburgh  Friday, 22 May - 19:30 (Doors open 19.00) - Portobello Town Hall 

For further details visit

To win tickets visit

Ocean Film Tour
The International Ocean Film Tour

Christophe Mason-Parker
Christophe Mason-Parker

Website of the Week - Christophe Mason-Parker

Archipelago Images is the website of Christophe Mason-Parker, marine conservationist and photographer. Chris grew up with a fascination for the ocean born from weekends at the seaside and BBC wildlife documentaries. The natural progression was to complete a university degree in aquatic biology, but it was not until later in life that he learned to dive. Joining a volunteer expedition in the Philippines in 2006, Chris was immediately hooked and went on to obtain his PADI Divemaster certification. He has since worked on marine research expeditions around the world where he has been lucky enough to witness some of the planet's most amazing flora and fauna.

His travels have taken him throughout SE Asia, from the Philippines to Thailand, and Indonesia to Malaysia. He is currently living in the Seychelles where he continues to promote marine conservation awareness and photograph the huge diversity of marine and terrestrial organisms of the Indian Ocean.

New UK Aqualite Dive & Photo-Video Lights for 2015

UK have replaced the original Aqualite with the entry level Aqualite-S and the higher spec'ed Aqualite-Pro. Both models are available as a dive light with a 20° pencil beam or as a photo-video light with a diffuse beam of 90° (-S) and 100° (-Pro).

The Aqualite-S models have three power settings via a push button switch on the rear, a brightness of 500 lumens and are depth rating to 100mts.

The Aqualite-Pro models have four power settings via a rotary rear switch and a depth rating of 150mts. The PRO dive light has a brightness of 750 lumens and the PRO photo-video light is a massive 1200 lumens!



Each dive light come with a fully adjustable rubber hand-strap for hands free use and each video light comes with three mounts for use with various photo and GoPro© arms.

All lamp heads are interchangeable and all lights are compatible with the Aqualite 90 395-UltraViolet head, ideal for revealing the fluorescent colours of many corals and anemones! winners 2014/15 winners 2014/15 winners

The results of the competition 2014/15 have been announced.

Congratulations to BSoUP Members Ellen Cuylaerts (Wide Angle - Natural Light - Runner-up, Wide-angle Wrecks - Silver, Wide Angle - Divers - Bronze), Nick Blake (Wide-angle - Wrecks - Bronze, Wide-angle - Marine Life - Runner-up), Paul Colley (Wide Angle - Natural Light - Bronze) and Elaine White (Wide Angle - Natural Light - Gold, Freshwater - Bronze).

Full results at

Working with Natural Light by Nick Blake

For those of you who missed Nick Blake's Presentation at the March meeting, he has kindly made a pdf of his updated Powerpoint slideshow available for BSoUP Members to download. See Meetings Presentations. You wll be asked to login if you have not already done so this session.

In this talk Nick reminded us how light behaves under water, when shooting with natural light works, and discussed the techniques he uses and how he has made successful use of locations close to home – UK inland dive sites!  He also took us down memory lane with some recent experiments using film and the lessons learned from it.

Natutal Light by Nick Blake

pash Baker Pash Baker
Winner - Pash Baker

Theme Portfolio - Photo Story - Results

Congratulations to Pash Baker who was the winner of this year's Theme Portfolio Competition. Pash's portfolio entitled 'Lido Revival' was taken at Brightlingsea with a Nikon D300S. Pash was presented with a trophy and a voucher for £250 courtesy of Scuba Travel by Simon Rogerson.

Congratulations also to Laura Storm and Rick Ayrton who came second and third respectively. Laura's portfolio ' Trees of Life' was taken in Bonaire with a Canon 550D, 15mm fisheye lens ISO200. f/14 @ 1/125 Rick's portfolio ' Mr Toad's Wild Ride' was taken at Cromhall Quarry and other localities with Nikon D200 and D610 cameras

The competition was judged by Simon Rogerson, Editor of Scuba Magazine.

The top seven:-

Pos. Photographer Subject
1 Pash Baker Lido Revival
2 Laura Strom Trees of Life
3 Rick AYrton Mr Toad's Wild Ride
4 Dave Baker Tiger Beach
5 Brian Pitkin Dive the Yacht
6 Paul Colley Luxury Liveaboard: the freediver’s dream
7 Nick Robertson Brown SA Sardine Run

Laura StormLaura StormSecond - Laura Storm

Rick AyrtonRick Ayrton
Third - Rick Ayrton

The top seven may be viewed on the Home Page and the top six in the Gallery.

BSoUP Members only may view all the entries enlarged in the Competition Slideshow Archive. BSoUP Members may also read a summary of Simon's feedback for more details. You will be prompted to login if you have not already done so this session.

Next month's competition is Focus On - Two of Something - any pair of underwater creatures, flora or artifacts. The competition will open shortly.

Website of the Week - Chico Maggioni

Chicco Maggioni was born in Milan, where he lives and works as an infants orthopedic surgeon in Liguria.

He enrolled in hist first course, in '71, at the FIPS Turin. He qualified as a 3-star CMAS Instructor in 1977. In 2005, during a trip to the Maldives, he discovered the ease of use of a compact digital camera in a housing, providing him another great reason to "flee" to the sea at every opportunity, even just for a day, in all weather conditions

Chico currently uses a Sony NEX-5 with 18/55 or 16 mm lens, in an Aquatica Diving Bell housing with two Inon D-2000 strobes.

Chico Maggione
Website of the Week - Chico Maggioni

PNW Diver
PNW Diver

PNW Diver - Latest issue

The latest issue of the FREE PNW Diver is now available for download.

The Pacific Northwest Diver is published bi-monthly by the Pacific Northwest Underwater Photographic Society, which is an organisation formed to encourage interest and particpation in underwater photography.

To get your copy please visit

Next BSoUP Meeeting

Tuesday 17 March 2015

The next BSoUP meeting takes place on Tuesday 17 March 2015 at 7.30 for 8.00 p.m. in Meeting Room 3, Union Building, Beit Quadrangle, Imperial College, South Kensington, London SW7 [Entrance via Prince Consort Road] (Directions). New and prospective new members will be welcomed from 7.30 p.m. See Welcome.

Simon Rogerson: Photo Story – what the editor wants!  Every month, Simon makes decisions on about 30 articles of differing lengths and styles that will eventually fill the pages of SCUBA magazine, many of which are photo stories. All the time he is editing these stories, he is making commissions for future issues, assessing proposals and advising contributors. So what makes a good photo story and how does he choose them? What does he look for in a series of images to impress his readers and what common mistakes does he see when images are presented to him? Simon will explain how he makes his decisions, and will then go on to present the winning entries (and those which didn’t quite win) in the Photo Story competition and tell us why he chose them

Simon Rogerson
Simon Rogerson

Photo Story
Photo Story

Simon is the editor of SCUBA magazine, having previously edited DIVE and been named Editor of the Year in the 2005 PPA Awards. He is first and foremost a writer, but took up underwater photography because he found it a challenging way of recording his dives. Besides SCUBA, he writes regularly on diving and natural history for the Sunday Times, Esquire, Food & Travel, BBC Wildlife, the Independent, the Telegraph and GQ. Simon was co-author, with John McIntyre, of a guidebook, 'Dive Red Sea'. 
Theme Portfolio - Photo Story

The competition is now closed. BSoUP Members may view the 29 entries in the Competition Slideshow.  You will be asked to log in if you have not done so this session. The competition has been judged by Simon Rogerson.  At the meeting all of the entries will be shown and Simon will present his winners with some feedback about how he chose them.

Nick Blake: Working with Natural Light.  You only have to look at Nick’s website to see that he loves working with natural light – and has produced some stunning images using it.  In this talk he will remind us how light behaves under water, when shooting with natural light works, the techniques he uses and how he has made successful use of locations close to home – UK inland dive sites!  He will also take us down memory lane (well, a few of us!) with some recent experiments using film and the lessons learned from it.

Nick started diving as a teenager in 1980 but his longstanding interest in photography only moved underwater in 2004.  That was with an Olympus compact camera, after which he moved on to Nikon DSLRs and currently shoots with Nikon D3 and Nikon D800e full frame cameras.  He credits one to one tuition and encouragement from Martin Edge as being instrumental to his development and success.

Nick Blake
Nick Blake

His competition successes include the Grandmaster award in the 2012/13 international photo competition and winner of the Advanced British & Irish category in the BSoUP/Diver 2014 Print competition.  In January his (mostly natural light) images from Truk were used in a Mail Online feature. He combines underwater photography workshops in more tropical climes with UK diving as a member of Woking based BSAC Club Surrey Aquanauts.

Zac Macaulay
Zac Macaulay

Website of the Week - Zac Macaulay

Zac's career spanning over 20 years as an underwater photography specialist has taken him and his crew all over the world shooting for a wide variety of agencies both advertising and editorial for many and varied clients. He likes to use a strong graphic element in his photographic style, using colour and composition as a thread that runs through his work.

He is as happy shooting commercial advertising shoots in purpose-built flooded studios, tanks or private pools for ultimate control as he is in the open sea on assignment. He has built up countless fix it contacts all around the world to help facilitate your production and a large knowledge of locations to help you find that special beach or bay just right for your shoot. More at

Martin Edge Ambon Workshop March 2014

BSoUP Member Martin Edge has published a selection of his images taken on his workshop to Ambon earlier this month.

Said Martin 'These included sea horse, frog fish, scorpion fish, leaf fish, nudibranchs, morays and hawk fish to name a few. This gallery is a true reflection on my behalf of subjects, which were frequently in attendance during our stay.

To view Martin's images please visit

Martin Edge Full Frame

UwP 83
UwP Issue 83. Cover: Raffaele Livornese

UwP - Latest issue

The latest issue of the FREE Uunderwater Photography Magazine is now available for download.

Issue 83 includes Editorial, News, Travel & Events, New Products, Product reviews, Competitions, Marine life, Locations, Techniques, and Parting Shot.

Also included with issue 83 is a link to download the UPY Competition Year Book, which includes all the winners, runners-up and highly commended and commended images.

To get your copy please visit

NUPG - Next Meeting

Monday 9th March

The next meeting of the Northern Underwater Photography Group will take place on Monday 9th March at Gurkha Grill, 198 Burton Road, West Didsbury, Manchester, M20 2LH. The meetings start at 8pm and usually last around two hours.

Competition Theme –  Groups

Favourite 5: Gary Grayson

Talk: The Wary, Lary and Downright Scary by Simon Rogerson (editor of SCUBA magazine)

Further details at

Northern Underwater Photography Group

Bristol Underwater Photography Group

BUPG - Next Meeting

Tuesday 10th March

The Meeting (start time 20:00hrs) will be at our normalvenue - The Casson Centre, Rodway Road, Patchway, BS34 5DQ (map)

Competition: Animal Behaviour

Competition: Macro /Close-up (held over from Janaury)

Annual Print Competition

Further details at

Coral Reefs - Secret cities in the sea exhibition

Natural History Museum, South Kensington, London SW7 5BD

27 March - 13 September 2015

Coral reefs are home to almost a quarter of all marine species. In this new exhibition you will meet the inhabitants of these richly diverse habitats, and find out why reefs are so important and how their future is being secured.

Encounter 200 strange and beautiful specimens from our collections including the gigantic Turbinaria coral, the venomous blue-ringed octopus and coral collected by Charles Darwin. Take a virtual reef dive, see live sea coral and fish in our aquarium and enjoy spectacular underwater photography.

Dr Ken Johnson, Museum coral reefs expert, explains the importance of corals: 'Coral reefs are not simply beautiful environments. They provide food, income and storm protection for many millions of people around the world.' - See more

Coral Reefs Exhibition
Coral Reefs - Secret cities in the sea exhibition

Our World Underwater
Our World Underwater

Our World Underwater Competition Winners

The Our World Underwater international underwater photography and video competition winners have been announced. This competition has become known as the "Superbowl" of underwater imaging events and celebrates and highlights both art of underwater photography as well as the beauty of the ocean.

This year the celebrity panel of judges went through thousands of images and videos taken by novice to professional photographers from around the world.

$50,000 in prizes were awarded to the winners, who represented more than 15 countries. Congratulations to Anthony Berberian, who won Best of Show for his first place image from the Macro Unrestricted category, and to all the winners and honorable mentions in the various categories.

Congratulations to all the winners including BSoUP member Joe Daniels who won a Gold in the Macro Traditional category.

British & Irish Underwater Photography Championship

5th September 2015

Plan now! Register by 10 p.m. 28th August 2015

BSoUP is delighted to announce an exciting new competition for 2015. The competition is open to anybody, including non‐BSoUP members and international competitors, who can dive the rivers, lakes and seas around the UK & Ireland on Saturday 5th September.

British & Irish Underwater Photography Championship

Photographers can dive wherever they wish and submit images electronically to a central panel of judges. BSoUP will announce results and award prizes on 19th September at a special event. There are categories for wide angle and close up photography, for experienced photographers and beginners, and for SLR users through to compact and action cameras.

Full details are now available on a dedicated event web site, where you will be able to register for a modest fee and compete for the title British and Irish Underwater Photography Champion 2015. Please visit

Scottish Diver

Cover shot - Dougie Souness

The latest issue of Scottish Diver includes a cover image by Glasgow-based BSoUP Member Dougie Souness, which headlines a six page Portfolio of his work taken on his travels around the world.

Dougie says "As I'm sure many will agree, it's more often than not a lot easier to visualise the shot in the mind than it is to capture it through the lens. I love diving and I love photography so being able to combine them both is the ultimate for me and it's not very often that I'll get in the water without my camera these days".

"It seems a long while since completing my PADI open water course in Loch Long but with my full time job keeping me pretty busy most of the time, I find that I have to make the best use of any chance to get away from it all so I can focus on diving and taking pictures. I'm fortunate to have gotten the opportunity to visit some amazing places and there's quite a few on the target list yet.

See also BSoUP Members Cover Shots.

Black & White by Rob White

For those of you who missed Rob White's Presentation at the February meeting, he has kindly made a pdf of his updated Powerpoint slideshow available for BSoUP Members to download. See Meetings Presentations. You wll be asked to login if you have not already done so this session.

Rob covers what he believes to be the important components of a good black and white image along with some examples.  He also describes several ways to produce black and white images using Adobe Lightroom.  This is in anticipation of our June Focus On competition, the subject of which is Monochrome!

Nalc and White - Rob White

Keith Lyall

Website of the Week - Keith Lyall

"I am Keith Lyall, I have been diving since 2000 and am a PADI Divemaster with over 1000 logged dives.

Prior to learning to dive I was a keen land photographer and as such underwater photography was a natural extension of this interest, in fact my overall interest in general photography has been significantly rekindled through diving, and when not diving I am developing my landscape photography at every opportunity.

My first experience of underwater photography was with a disposable camera in a plastic housing. Although the results were less than impressive, this ignited a desire to take further images and acquire the skills required to develop as an underwater photographer.

I am a member of the British Society of Underwater Photographers (BSoUP) and Chairman of Photosub."

Masterclass: Understanding Underwater Photography with Alex Mustard

10th March 2015 , 16.50-21.30

Natural History Museum, London SW7 5BD

Enjoy an evening exploring Alex Mustard’s exquisite work. A six-time award winner at Wildlife Photographer of the Year, Alex has an impressive portfolio to share. He will offer unique insights into the techniques and approaches he uses, with an opportunity for audience questions.

Tickets £45, Members £40.50
Book tickets online

Alex Mustard's Masterclass
Masterclass: Understanding Underwater Photography
with Alex Mustard

Alex’s dynamic underwater photography showcases the extraordinary biodiversity of our oceans. From tiny fluorescent krill to impressive sharks and seals, Alex’s stunning images capture the vibrant colours and incredible species of our seas.

Journey through Alex’s six award-winning images and the expedition stories surrounding them. Learn how he has honed his skills to combine artistry with technical accomplishment and pioneering approaches, while also championing marine biodiversity conservation.

The evening will also include:
- a viewing of the Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2014 exhibition
- a complimentary drink from the bar
- the chance to meet Alex Mustard after the event

The exhibition will open at 18.15 and the Masterclass will start at 19.30. Entry is via Exhibition Road. There will be no cloakroom available at this event.

Visit the Wildlife Photographer of the Year website for competition updates.

Part of the season of events celebrating the 50th Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition.

Alex is also talking at the Royal Geographical Society on 4th March, alongside Monty Halls, as part of the London Diving Chamber’s Dive Lectures. That event is already sold out. Alex is keen to point out that the two talks are polar opposites. The RGS talk is about my work on the Thistlegorm wreck, the NHM talk is about marine wildlife photography.

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