Of Underwater Cameras Nikon & Canon, NUDI Philippines, the Bora Crowd and Waiting for the Boracay Magic Hour!

This post is a continuation of my latest Boracay series where I got to go with the Globe Bridging Communities group on a diving trip =) I met two underwater photographers who changed my mind about seeing our world in a whole new light and exploring hidden gems in not-so-shallow waters. Earth, after all, is around 70% water. This being said, I know that if I don't open my eyes and conquer my fear of open water and sea creatures then I'm missing so much. Let me also give you a glimpse of how I guiltlessly spent the last half of my first day in Bora while waiting for the Magic Hour =) Pardon the rambling. I just have to add to caption the photo below - This is how the pros do it! Hahaha. 


I know little about underwater photography. This was my first face-to-face encounter with people who are passionate about it. Turns out there's a group of Pinoy underwater photographers called NUDI (Network of Underwater Digital Imagers) who would go out on weekends and spend their remaining free time together to dive somewhere in the Philippines and take home wonderful photos of marine life. I found it hard enough to concentrate on the intricacies of diving like the weight, gauges and computations, what more if you are thinking of ISO, aperture, shutter speed, composition and the like at the same time underwater (and the turtle will swim by any moment haha)! How about bundling that up with a dive cleanup?! While Jan and Boogs assembled their gear for the next day, Audrey and I took the time to watch their underwater videos and photographs first. Super duper nice! It made me want to actually dive and take my camera with me! I also kept on asking what the creatures were hehehe. Check out nudi.ph for prettier and amazing shots =)


There's even an underwater pre-nup video!!! Only a few can definitely pull this off like the president of NUDI PH himself =) Here, Jan and Jules take the plunge!

Bringing an underwater camera can take a toll on your luggage limit on the plane so a Mabuhay Miles Elite Card or SportsPlus Card can do wonders (adds 10 kgs)! The box below looks small in the picture but I assure you it sure is heavy and bulky. Ah, when you really love what you're doing, it probably makes lugging this around worthwhile.


The DSLR camera itself, my friends, is actually the normal type that many enthusiasts use. From this, you build an underwater camera with a customised case specific to the model.


Nikon user? This is just the start of hours of assembly time. Handles, screws, levers, lights, arms, etc.


The end product? Tada!


It weighs a ton too (but it will get lighter when submerged in water they said, my main problem is getting there with this.. hehe)! Relative to my size, I'd say this is way too big for me. I'm already having difficulty with my normal DSLRs (so I got a Lumix GF1 ;) haha).


Canon user? It starts out with a normal DSLR too!


I bet guys would love putting all THESE together more hahaha.


They said you would have to choose only one lens and you're stuck with it for the dive obviously. They have to be really careful with assembling their cameras or else.. Kaput if salt water gets in!


It took them several hours (the whole hot afternoon inside the comfort of our suite sala at Pearl of the Pacific Beach Resort hehe) to do this! Then another few hours for dismantling, drying and cleaning their cameras after the dive! Put that in mind plus they have to calculate how many hours before they can fly after diving too. O_O


I was in awe and realized how ready they were for the next day. Unlike me... haha. We went out and I was content with people watching


and enjoying the Bora's signature powdery white sand on my feet.


This has always been my favorite time of the day here - waiting for the sun to set. This is my magic hour (from 5 p.m. to 6 p.m.). At this time, the sun is less harsh and it's cooler. I don't go out at noon when I'm here.


But when I do, I just want to sit down, stare at the water and the long shoreline


probably sleep there for a while and hide from the rest of the sun if that is possible haha. This was what I would normally do in Boracay after all the activities and binge eating. 


Even with all the tourists and what other people say, Boracay is still a piece of paradise for me. It was here with this trip that I first got to appreciate the world of underwater photographers. It was already beautiful here on the beach but they have got a special skill that allows them to see more, especially the untouched whole new life down there. Through their photos, videos and stories, only they will be able to show us a part of that world and what we're missing for now. 

I'm glad that even after my nth time here, there's a new day again to learn something new. The next day was the dive cleanup day proper. This time, I got to experience diving near the beach. =) 

Until the next post!

Is there an underwater photographer (if you have an underwater case or camera is okay haha) in the house? What camera brand and model do you use? Or do you enjoy beach bumming like I do? Haha. If you have to choose one, beach or water? =) Please feel free to comment below =)