Recently my best buddy LP and I did yet another dive at one of our favourite piers, Flinders. Within the space of just a few minutes, we had some extraordinary interactions with a beautiful big cuttlefish, an inquisitive octopus that simply would not leave LP’s camera alone, and a stunning stingray that glided majestically over us all. While I would usually combine the critters encountered in one dive into a single video, each of these critters absolutely commanded our cameras and proved themselves entirely worthy of their own short feature film. (Only the cuttlefish is presented in this post, but the octopus and stingray films will not be too far behind 🙂 )
After diving together almost every week, I usually make a short film from the footage I’ve taken on a dive with my own camera, while LP does the same with his film to share on his excellent Ocean and Earth blog (which I highly recommend for you to visit and follow). However, these three exceptional creatures demanded something more from us individually and collaboratively on the day. It seemed only fitting to us both to combine our footage to help you experience these exquisite creatures in the same way that we did 🙂
While sharing our two-camera approach is a new experience for us both, I love that you get to see us both working in harmony with these animals as we always do, along with the way in which these gorgeous critters initiate interaction with us when they feel relaxed enough to do so. In particular, they seem to love peering into LP’s big, round camera dome port, probably admiring their own reflection (and possibly mistaking the reflected beauty for a potential mate?) in the process.
Watching this film, it becomes very obvious that LP (aka Mark Jones) has a much more professional underwater video camera than mine! He is one of the few people I know who seems to love the underwater world as much as I do! (If you are anywhere near Melbourne Australia next week, I encourage you to attend either of the International Ocean Film Festival screenings where his breath-taking short film ‘Ocean and Earth – One Heartbeat’ will be premiering; details and bookings available HERE – I wouldn’t miss it for the world!)
It has been my supreme pleasure and privilege to dive with LP for the past three years. During this time, he has also been the truest of friends, walking alongside me and encouraging me throughout some of the darkest and most difficult parts of my challenging journey with recurrent cancer. LP is one of those rare individuals who genuinely cares for others. He carries an intense sense of responsibility to care for our planet and its oceans, and for educating others on the importance of doing the same. His personal motto is ‘Dare to Change the World’ (recently emblazoned along the full length of his forearm), and I am always inspired by his passion and commitment to play my small part for the well-being of this glorious blue planet that has been entrusted to our care.
In addition to this recent video which it is my delight to share with you, I thought you might enjoy some of my previous cuttlefish encounters as well (including a gorgeous baby cuttle I spotted once on a night dive!) Cuttles are such gentle and highly intelligent creatures that it breaks my heart to think of them ever being caught on fishing lines or being treated poorly in any way. 😦 You might call me childish for preferring to call them ‘Cuddle Fishes’ rather than Cuttlefish, but I’m totally ok with that, so here are a few of my all time favourite Cuddle Fishes to warm your heart and make you smile until I am able to edit the octopus and stingray videos for you – enjoy! 🙂 🙂 🙂
Much love and bubbles,
ps Tank you so much for reading through this blog post. While you are here, please feel free to check out a few more of my ‘scuba vs tumour’ underwater and Bucket List adventures.
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pops Looking forward to catching up with as many of you as possible at next week’s Melbourne screenings of the Ocean Film Festival (March 12 and 13!) 🙂 🙂 🙂