Friday, October 29, 2010

Two in one day!

Good Morning,

It's another beautiful morning on Maui!  I just took Mango for a walk and enjoyed watching the Zip Line tours get ready for a day of business.  Our neighbor passed us on the trail as she was heading up to feed her horses on her four wheeler, it makes me want to grab Dan and go for a Dirt Bike ride today.  Especially since we just had a few days of rain on the hills so there would be a ton of mud, which makes riding a lot of fun.

So I just sat down to write a blog because I know it has been a while since we last wrote one.  When I logged in I noticed that we had written a blog a couple of weeks ago and never posted it, so I just posted it. But because it was written a few weeks ago, I have to update some info...

Our cousin Amy's wedding was Awesome!  It was great to see a bunch of our family fly out from the east coast.  Most of you probably don't know this but my mom has a sister who has three daughters that are the same age as the three of us.  It was pretty cool growing up along side them, we always had buddies to hang out with at family gatherings and beach days.  Although the girls tell us now that we were a bit rough when we were younger, forcing them to swim, fish and do boy stuff all the time.  Oh well...  It was a lot of fun to hang out with them and dance the night away after the wedding.  All the girls looked amazing, especially Amy,) and it was truly a night to remember.  (Jarett looked good too, in case he's reading this.)

A big surprise coming from wedding week was that our Mom decided to move back out here to Maui with us for a couple of months.  It is always pretty awesome to hang out with Mom and we are a pretty lucky family that we all get along well enough to live together as adults.  I should be pretty thankful that Gwen is so understanding when it comes to all of this too!  Luckily we had an extra bedroom in the house that would could turn into Mom's room.  So far she's painting and getting used to walking big Mango.  She's a really good painter, I'll have to take some pictures of her work and post them some time...

Here's the really awesome news:  we got a new TV for FREE!  A couple of friends of ours were moving to a new house and were tired of their old TV that wasn't HD.  So they gave it to us, it's a huge 60 incher!  Perfect for our house, Dan already set up Mario Kart and we've had movie night several times.  It's pretty awesome.  Even Mom and Gwen are impressed with the lifelike size of the football players on sunday.

We might be heading to Indo again on a job, which would be cool.  Although there was just a huge earthquake/tsunami and I think there was even a volcano eruption?  So that might slow those plans down. But Indonesia is huge, i think all the bad stuff is over 1000 miles from where we were heading, so we can still hope.  It would be a lot of fun to get back underwater over there, it's beautiful.  If we do go, I hope we'll have some new pictures to share from the trip.  It is mostly a video shoot, but I'm sure we'll find some time to take a few shots!

Dan is in the kitchen trying to grow an Avocado tree in a glass, i'll keep you posted...

Gwen and Mango say hello too.

I'll talk to you soon.


Where does time go?

Aloha to all...

Seriously, where does the time go?  It's been a few months since we sat down to write, post a video clip or even chat on Facebook.  We're sitting here trying to think of what has been happening to keep us so busy?  Wow, we also just noticed that our first blog entry was September 23rd of last year!  Can you believe a whole year has gone bye?

Well it was summer, and summertime is always the busiest time of year here on Maui.  July and August is always a good time to catch up with old dive buddies and art collectors passing through.  We had a pretty successful summer season and we're happy to say we're still in business!

September isn't always as easy.  It's typically the slowest month for island visitors and it's truly the slowest month for art sales.  The good news is that the slower times gives us some more time to work on other projects and even to go out and shoot some more.  Plus we had a lot more friends visiting, which makes us wish we had a place to dive with old dive buddies.  Hawaiian Rafting seems like the company to deal with, so steer your diving in that direction and we can work together on diving in the future.

We got a visit from an old friend who works with a big company over in LA.  Last year we helped shoot some footage for some of his projects that can be seen around the world on the sides of skyscrapers!  No joke, one project has over 3 million LCD screens linked together on the outside of a few huge buildings.  It's amazing work.  Here is the link to a project in Macau, near Hong Kong, that had some underwater footage we helped with, see what you think:

City of Dreams - Macau from StandardVision on Vimeo.

We love working with these guys, it's just such amazing technology.  They have some new projects coming up that might involve some traveling and some cool new camera's.  We'll see what happens, but it's always very exciting.

We have a couple of our own new ventures on the horizon that we are excited about!  We met the owner of a company that sells artwork to high end hotels and he fell in love with our work and wanted us to become part of his team, so we did.  We're still putting the whole thing together, but it looks like it might be a promising venture down the road. You never know, you might see some of our work in hotels around the world someday.  We had to go through a million of our old photo's to find some that we were willing to share in an unlimited fashion.  So none of the photo's that you've seen before will be released, but a bunch of others that no one has seen.  We printed a few this last weekend to share under the Banyan Tree, simply because we wanted to see if people would like them.

The hardest part about our job is picking out new images to print?  You think that would be easy, but there have been so many times that we fall in love with a new shot and then we get it printed and no one likes it. Or we'll print one that we're not sure about, or maybe we don't even really like it that much, and everyone loves it?  We haven't been able to figure out why either scenario happens?  It's pretty strange.  Probably the best example is our best selling photo "Stuck in the Middle."  We spent probably a half hour trying to take a picture of a transparent shrimp that was so awesome, we thought..  All the while this little clown fish kept nipping at our fingers and bumping into the camera and out of simple annoyance we snapped a couple quick pictures...  It's strange how it all works out.

We've mentioned this before, but we're always trying to work on something for TV.  We shoot footage from time to time or sell some of our stock clips, but someday we'd like to do something more permanent.  Who knows if it will ever happen, it's a tough business to get into, but it seems we've made a bit more progress in the last month or so.  We'll obviously update when we can, we're pretty stoked about it.  We've learned the term "Tempered Optimism," that is how we've been advised to feel as we go through the process, haha...

There is also some talk of a gallery in California?  It's still pretty new and in the works, but that could be cool.  The Keiki Kohola Project, the team we do whale research with, is hoping to help get us into some local galleries to help us both raise money for future endeavors.  It's exciting because we have made lots of freinds in California, it would be cool to visit and do some diving over there.  We're hoping to do more traveling soon, hopefully you all can meet up with us when we swing through your neck of the woods.

We have a bunch of fun things coming up in the next two months too.  Our cousin Amy, who lives out here with us, is getting married in a week and half!  Another cousin, Coreen,  is coming out to stay with us for the wedding, which is going to be great.  She's a bit younger than us, so it will be fun to get to know her better during the next couple of weeks.

Then in November we have another wedding to go to on the Big Island.  That will be a blast too, especially if we can get some diving in while we're there or maybe even some trips to the lava flow?  But, as many of you probably already know, they don't call it the "Big Island" for nothing.  It will take us 4-5 hours to drive from one side to the other to see the lava, so we'll see.

Have we mentioned how big Mango is now?  She's gotta be full grown at about 85 lbs.  She loves the water more than anything now, we can't go anywhere without her trying to swim in anything water, puddles, sprinklers, drink bowls, streams, reservoirs, showers and obviously the ocean.  Gwen tried to take her to our roller hockey game the other night and she spent most of her time in the water with Mango.  I should mention that the roller hockey rink is right next to the water in Kihei, it's really amazing.  If any of our old friends from New England are reading this, you gotta see this rink.  It's on the beach!  t's very cool, we play at night under the lights on sundays.  We're still trying to get used to roller hockey versus ice hockey, but we're having a blast.  Mike is flying out for Amy's wedding and he's bringing roller blades so that he can come play with us, it's going to be a lot of fun.  The Maui Inline Hockey Association is pretty cool, anyone who lives here on Maui and plays hockey or wants to learn should really come by.  Or if you just want to watch and check out the rink at night, games are sunday nights from 7-9 and advanced pickup hockey is tuesday nights from 8-10.  It's really fun!

Oooh, we almost forgot.  We got to spend a day out on Hula Girl, which is a huge catamaran that can be private chartered.  It is probably the nicest boat on Maui, maybe in Hawaii.  It was an amazing way to spend a sunday on the ocean complete with a full kitchen and dive compressor.  Some day we should get a bunch of people together and take that boat to Molokai to do some hammer head diving, imagine sitting at a beautiful table with a gourmet lunch on your surface interval?  That would be cool.  Someday we'll have one that travels around the world and you can all come visit too!

Well, that's all for now.  Hopefully we'll be better at writing more often.  Thanks to all those who read and to all those who stay in touch.

We'll be sending out a new email to all of our friends, family, art collectors and dive buddies soon, so if you're not on our mailing list and you want to be sign up soon!


 Talk Soon...

Friday, June 25, 2010

New Boat!

Aloha to all.

Thanks for reading and supporting C3 Submerged!

Things are going great out here on Maui.  It seems like the universe wants us to succeed.  Every time we get a bit worried about the next round of bills, we have a great couple of sales an art show or on our website.  So again, thank you to all of our supporters.

Two of our newest images, "Turtle Vacation" and "Maui Keiki," seem to be instant successes.  It makes us feel like we're on the right track still.  We have some new landscape type images coming out soon too, we'll send an email to you all so that you can see them.  We're very excited about a couple of them, but I don't want to give away too many details just yet.  Remember to join our mailing list if you would like to receive our emails.

We spent about a week this past month helping shoot a TV show for children with Coldwater Media, a company out of Colorado.  We had a blast getting to know the crew and learning some new tricks.  Each time we shoot with a new crew we learn more and more and it gets us closer to putting together our own little show.  This TV show was a nature show for children and it had a large Christian angle that was very interesting to be around.  The host, Peter Schreimer, has done a couple of shows already so it was cool to watch him work in front of the camera.  He memorized his lines very quickly and could get the right shot in just a few takes.  The crew was small but very efficient.  Tom Small and Jim Fitzgerald of Coldwater Media really had there stuff together.  Tom was a great cameraman/editor with a lot of innovative ideas.  We really hope that we get to work with these guys again soon, as they do a lot of interesting work.  If you're curious, check out "Drive Through History."  It's a program Jim wrote and Tom shot, it's very well done and pretty cool too.

The most exciting news is that we got a boat given to us.  It's a great old Avon rubber inflatable with a little Seagul motor.  It needs a bit of work, but we're excited about having a boat to play with.  It probably isn't large enough to cross channels to the other islands but it's small enough that we can deflate it and stick it on the inter-island ferry's and planes then inflate again and go on adventures.  No one will want to go with us on the boat and we probably don't have room anyways, but it should be a lot of fun for us. (If we can fix the leaks.)

Our Boat came complete with a 1HP engine and a storage box.  We were told that we could even bring the boat on vacation with us next time we went traveling, how cool would that be?  Hopefully we'll have some cool adventures to share with you soon.  For now check out our first video with our boat:

Our First Boat from C3 Submerged on Vimeo.

We're hoping that this boat will be the first of many and a great first one to look back at someday.  

Aloha and Mahalo,


Thursday, May 20, 2010

Turtle Vacation


We just put middle brother Mike on a plane again.  We had an awesome week and half with him in town.  We hung out in Hana, went dirt biking, surfing, hiking, and even did some diving… I’m sure that’s a shock.  It was so fun to have him around again, Dan and I were so excited to show him how the business continues to grow in the wake of us leaving Lahaina Divers.

Gwen’s mom was in town for a while too, which was great because Gwen really needed some mom time after last month.  Mom Parker took us all under her wing for a few weeks and made sure we were well fed and in great spirits, it was awesome.  Matter of fact, it’s been about two and half weeks since she left and we still have food to thaw out and eat that she left for us!  Linda if you are reading this, we had Lasagna last night and loved it!  When are you coming back to visit again?

In between Mike and Mom Parkers visit Dan’s friend Dana came to visit too.  So all together we had a full month of playing tourist again.  It was awesome, except now we are tired.  Poor Mango was so active that she was limping for a few days.  We had to put her on house arrest so that she would heal, apparently puppies shouldn’t run too much and they should take it easy.  We have a tendency to learn things the hard way.

The Photography business is going great for us.  We have had a lot of success with our new high definition aluminum prints; people really seem to love them.  In fact, there is a dentist office in Portland that is full of our best pieces!  We just received a new shipment of Aluminums and they look great, we tried some new images this time and were very happy with how they came out, “Mandarin” looks great.  We’ll display it the next few art fairs for anyone who is here on Maui.  We’ll be under the Banyan Tree the next two weekends and we’ll be the Four Seasons each Wednesday.

The addition of our newest collection has helped too.  Even though whale season is officially over, people really like our new whale shots.  We are sure that they will do very well next whale season.

The biggest surprise was the success of the first above water picture we’ve taken since “Mala Sunset,” back in 2007.  One day Dan and I were walking Mango to her favorite beach near our house, a place called Waikuli.  Mango loves it because there aren’t’ too many people so she can just be herself and be let off the leash and go swimming.  Anyway, when we got there we hurried into the water chasing Mango and swam around for a minute before we even realized that there was a huge female turtle sitting up on the beach a few yards from where we got in the water.

It was the first turtle that Dan or I have seen on the beach on Maui.  I am sure some of you have seen one before, but in over seven years, it was our first.  Dan was so excited he ran home to get the cameras.  We took a bunch of pictures during the day, but we left the beach hoping that she would stay resting on the beach until sunset.
We lucked out; she was still sitting there waiting for us when we came back that evening.  What made things perfect is the Maui sunset didn’t let us down and the angle was all perfect.  We took a bunch of different shots to capture the scene and used all of our resources to come up with “Turtle Vacation.”  We even used our cell phone video lights to light up the turtle in the foreground so that we could capture the details of the mother turtle without losing the bright sunset.

The picture is actually what you call and HDR shot, which stands for High Dynamic Range.  You see, our eyes can interpret a much larger range of colors and contrast than our cameras, so an HDR photo is actually more than one photo developed together to make one High Dynamic Range photo.  Basically the image comes out closer to what your eye would truly see if you were there with us when we captured the moment.  Take some time and check out “Turtle Vacation” if you have a chance.  It’s on our website under “Latest Works.”

We’ve got some new photo ideas as well and we’re excited to get going on them too.  We’ll keep you posted as our ideas turn into images, plus we’re going to start a newsletter so that you can keep up with us as well.

I guess that’s all for now, the emails are answered, the shipping is done, and Gwen is at work; I think it’s time to go hit the trails on the dirt bikes…

Talk soon,


Friday, April 23, 2010

Follow Your Dreams...

Following our Dreams!

A lot has happened out here on our tiny rock in the middle of the Pacific Ocean since we last wrote of jumping in the water with a huge Tiger Shark.  We’ve had great news, bad news, amazing encounters, life changing events and some eye opening realizations.  So much has happened that I’m not even sure where to begin; I guess it’s always easiest to start at the beginning.

All of our friends at work started noticing that something was different when Gwen had to be moved off the boats and into the shop because she was too “sick” to dive.  Things were abnormally strange because Shannon had just moved off the boats because she was pregnant, so there was no hiding our secret at work and everyone new that Gwen and I were expecting a child!  It was very exciting news, we were so excited to become parents.  Uncle Dan and big sister Mango, were almost as excited as Gwen and I. 

Two weeks after Gwen moved into the shop, Dan and I started doing Whale Research again with Rachel Cartwright and the Keiki Kohola Project.  Maui was pretty busy with Spring Break, so Dan and I were having trouble fitting everything in; working at LD, shooting on the research boat, hanging with pregnant Gwen, and even giving Mango the attention she needs.  It was a pretty tough week when everything started hitting at once.

Life has a funny way of working itself out.  I can’t remember what exactly happened first, but everything seemed to come to a head at once.

The saddest news we’ve had in a while came when Gwen and I went to a doctor’s appointment on a Monday.  We found out that Gwen was miscarrying; our little fetus wasn’t developing anymore.  That was really disappointing for Gwen, obviously for me too, but it was extremely hard for Gwen.  Even though we found out that miscarrying is pretty normal and that it is probably her bodies’ way of saying that things weren’t right, it’s still difficult.

Tuesday was looking like a much better day.  Dan and I were about to begin doing research on the Humpback whales!  We had been waiting patiently for a whole year to get back in the water with these amazing animals.  Our plan was to work at Lahaina Divers in the morning and then go out and start doing research in the afternoon.  As usual, no matter how much planning we tried to do ahead of time, Lahaina Divers had different ideas, and even though all shifts were covered and photo’s were taken, I was forced to choose my Lahaina Divers job or my C3 career.  After seven years of hard work for Lahaina Divers, I turned in my keys without a fight or any hesitation.

Whale research was going great.  I was able to spend a full week and half dedicating all of my time to the project.  Unfortunately Dan had to cover a lot of my vacated shifts at Lahaina Divers.  We will never be certain, but it almost seemed as though he was being punished for my leaving?  About a week into the research Dan was forced to make a similar decision at Lahaina Divers.  Things were being changed all around him and so after seven years he chose to leave as well.

It was a weird feeling at first, we didn’t have to wake up early anymore, we didn’t have to wait until eight o’clock at night to see what we were doing the next day, and it seemed as though we were actually going to give our “dream” job a real chance.  In fact, we decided to put all of our time into our Fine Art Photography and to our Cinematography career rather than just run out and get another job that might consume our lives.

It is finally time to see if C3 Submerged can pay our bills and if we can truly “follow our dreams’ and make all that we have been working towards into a reality.  It’s a very scary feeling, but it’s also very exciting.  For the first time in a long time we are free to take the pictures we want, and we have the time to do things the way we want.  We hope that our new works for the next few months will prove that to be true. 

One day we took Mango for a walk to the beach and just went swimming, it seems like a pretty normal thing to do on Maui, but we hadn’t done that in over five years.  We had almost forgotten why we had moved out here, we hadn’t “stopped to smell the roses” in such a long time.  Maui is such a beautiful place to live; we are so lucky that our path has brought us here.

Even though Gwen had just miscarried, Dan and I had no real jobs and we weren’t sure if our little business would make it, we were and are the happiest we’ve been in a long time and it feels great. 

Dan and I tried to do our best work for the Keiki Kohola Project and tried to get the most out of our amazing humpback whale encounters.  So for those of you who don’t know, we actually got asked to work on a research boat and had special permission, (NMFS Permit # 10015 and 895-1450,) to get in the water and try to get good photo’s and video of these enormous critters.  It’s pretty hard to explain what it feels like to swim with an animal that is as large as a bus.  Overall it was amazing, and we can’t wait until we can join the team again next year!  Here is the short movie we put together from the past two weeks:

We were lucky enough to get a few good images from our week and half with the whales.  You should know that we don’t just jump in with the whales whenever we want, there is a ton of research being done.  Rachel Cartwright and the Keiki Kohola Project does a lot of working tracking the mothers and calves of Hawaii.  You can learn a lot more about the research at: It’s very cool stuff.  Some days we didn’t even get in the water, we just followed a playful calf taking GPS coordinates and behavioral notes, but on the days we did get to go in the encounters are always amazing no matter if we get good video or photos.

The research is over this year, and Gwen is feeling better.  Now it’s back to our home office for Dan and I, and time to see if we can make C3 Submerged work.  We’re putting together some of our new images and fixing up our website a bit.  It’s so much fun to have the time to create and have fun with the job that we love so much! 

All in all, things are still moving along.  Even with all the changes, life is great.  Dan and I couldn’t be more excited about the next few months, it’s really time to see if we can make it on our own and see if our dream can become a reality.

Talk soon,


Friday, February 26, 2010

Tiger Shark

Before the Tiger Shark story gets revealed, let me update on a few things:

First, we finally started taking our Rebreather class with Todd.  We decided to learn the Inspiration Rebreathers, because those seem to be very reliable, plus Todd has a bunch of them around!  The class has been a lot of fun so far, but it has also shown us how little we think about the actually physics of diving while diving on the traditional open circuit scuba we all love.  So it has taken us a bit of refreshing to get our minds back around the principles of diving so that we can be as safe as possible while diving these rigs.  Todd is doing a great job of taking us through the class too, so if we die it's his fault.  (Mom his name is Todd Winn, Gwen knows how to get ahold of him!) 

We're excited to get going on the Rebreathers because Rachel Cartwright from the Keiki Kohola Project,, recently gave us the go ahead on using the rebreathers during her research in late March.  She wants us to be able to get good photo's and video's of the babies so that we might be able to figure out the sex of the newborns, among other things.  It sounds pretty exciting to us and we've wanted to play with rebreathers for many reasons anyways.  We're hoping that some cool Hammerhead experiences await us in the near future.

Dan and I have also completed moving our little office into our house, we figure it would be the easiest way to shower more regularly and maybe even eat once in a while.  So far it seems to be working out pretty well even though Gwen says we spend most of our time in our little office.

Mango is getting huge!  She must weigh about 45lbs now, but she's still cute as a button.  She went on her first big walk today and when she got to the duck pond up in Kapalua she went diving in the water.  We know she's one of us now, she'll be diving soon.

So, now for the real reason that your reading this blog today; the Tiger Shark!

At the end of a normal dive at Sgt. Major, a diver made some noise to draw attention to a Manta Ray swimming by the reef.  Dan and I left the baby turtle behind and swam to the edge of the reef to hang out with the Manta for a bit.  We snapped photo's and video of the creature for about 10 minutes then realized we were getting towards the 50 minute mark of our dive and most of the divers were heading back up to the boat; so we followed slowly back happy with our morning dives.  As we neared the boat Rebecca was snorkeling and trying to get our attention from the surface, writing notes on her slate about a Tiger Shark or something in the area.  At first we thought that she was nervous and wanted to get us and the other divers out of the water, but we were wrong.  She was telling us to save battery life and to get back up on the boat so we could go find the sucker!

As we surfaced, Captain Todd and Rebecca began telling us the story about how another boat had seen two large Tiger Sharks eating a Monk Seal at the surface not far from where we were diving and how Todd had gotten the GPS coordinates from the other boat captain.  So we were off to see what we could find!

As we approached the area, we saw another circling boat and no signs of Sharks or Seals, Dan and I remained suited in our dive gear just in case.  At one point we thought we saw a red cloud just under the surface or maybe dark objects, but it was hard to be sure.  Since we had just dove about 300 yards from the spot we all knew which way the current was going, so we asked to be dropped in the water up current a bit from the spot on the off chance that there was still something going on in the water below.  

As we got ready, I would be lying if I said we weren't a bit nervous to jump into possibly sharky waters, but we were far more excited than nervous so we went for it.  As soon as we hit the surface we began to sink and swim towards the bottom.  The water was deeper than we thought, and we leveled off at about 75 feet.  We got back to back and drifted along watching every direction we could, never knowing what would come our way.  We half expected to see the remnants of a Monk Seal carcass and Tiger Shark tails jerking around as their heads were buried in the remains, but there was nothing.  

After only just a few seconds a small school of bait fish swam up to us and circled, that's when we knew we weren't alone.  Then, like the Leopard Shark scene in Life Aquatic, we stopped and stared like Steve Zissou as this huge creature approached out of the nothingness ahead.

It was amazing!  Our hearts were pounding with fear and excitement and our fins were hitting each other as we pushed close together so that we could feel safe in the middle of the blue water.  Our only comforts were that we were both there together and that we had two cameras to push this Giant Shark away from us if she turned and got too close.  She headed directly for us, turned broadside and showed us all the girth and muscle she had and then she just stared at us.

 Honestly, the 14-16 foot shark wanted nothing to do with us.  She leisurely swam around us three times just as curious to see us as we were to see her; she seemed happily stuffed full of endangered Monk Seal.   We did see another Tiger shark at one point but it made a real quick move towards the surface, which made us a little nervous because Rebecca was snorkeling above.  The second shark retreated almost as quickly as it appeared, and our big girl eventually swam away as well.

We can't wait for another opportunity like that!  Thank you Captain Todd and Rebecca for setting us up for the adventure of a lifetime.

Thank you all for reading.  It's been fun to hear how many of you guys actually read this blog.  You can become a "follower" of this blog on the side bar, sign up then we'll have a better idea who is reading too.  Either way, thank you for tuning in.  We've got more cool stuff coming!

Talk soon,


Wednesday, January 27, 2010


Aloha Everyone!

So much for sticking to writing a few times a week?  We'll get better soon.  The new year has been busy for us over here on Maui.  We're in the process of moving both our office and our home to a new place on Maui.  We should be about finished with the move next week, then it will be business as usual.

We won't write much today, but we have had a couple of amazing whale encounters the past two weeks that we had to share with you all!

First was a surface interaction that Dan got some photo's of:

Some splashing in the distance drew our attention to a small group of whales "playing" at the surface.  At first it seemed like a normal breaching baby whale, with it's mom and a male escort near by.

The closer we got, we realized that it wasn't a normal encounter at all!

One of the adult whales was actually lifting and throwing the baby out of the water?  We had no way of telling if it was the Mother or the Male Escort doing the throwing.

We assumed it was the mohter, and that the behavior was playful in nature.

As far as we could tell, it didn't seem like harmful behavior, and the baby wasn't trying to get away.

We later learned that the behavior could have been brought on by the Male being aggressive enough to literally throw the baby away so that he could have mom to himself and try to mate with her.

We will never know for sure what was really going on, but it sure was interesting to see.  We're all glad that Dan had his camera with him so that we could share this with you all.

Unfortunately the Whale Research permits have been on hold this year, so we haven't gotten to get out and swim with the Humpbacks this year.  We've heard from a bunch of different people that one of the researchers violated the rules of their permit last whale season by taking paying tourists out to get close encounters with whales.  Now, because of this idiot, every other researcher is sidelined until the permit officials decide what to do.  As with many decisions these days, many suffer because of one person's stupidity.  Can you tell we're bothered by this?

The second encounter was pretty amazing too!  We were diving off Lanai and on our way home when we saw a pod of Hawaiian Spinner dolphins playing in their usual spot.  We took the boat in to hang out for a while so that everyone could have their dolphin fix for the day.  As we approached we noticed that the dolphins weren't alone, there were two Humpbacks swimming and playing along with the dolphins.  We stopped the boat and watched for about 20 minutes as the new group of friends swam all around the bay, jumping, splashing and just enjoying each others company.

At about the 20 minute mark, the group took a turn towards the boat.  We shut off the engines and waited to see how close they group would come.  We knew that the dolphins love to come say hello and even play with the boat for a while, but since the endangered/protected Humpback Whales were with them we were stuck.  The rules require that boats and swimmers stay at least 100 yards away from the whales so that they don't get hurt at all, so when whales decide to swim at you and get within 100 yards you just have to wait until they decide to swim 100 yards away again before you can turn your boat on and move.  So we waited!

Pretty cool huh?  They swam right under the boat!  Did you see the dolphins at the beginning of the clip?  

After these two encounters we're really hoping that the whale research permits get cleared soon!

Talk soon,


Monday, January 4, 2010

Happy New Year!

It’s been almost a full month since we wrote our last blog entry and, as you probably could have imagined, a lot has happened.  We worked on two shoots, had two holidays, had a brother move away, added a puppy to the gang, and the whales are finally here in good numbers so the research dives can start soon!  For the most part, the month has brought a lot of exciting changes and adventures.  We’re very excited for 2010!

The biggest news of the New Year is that our brother Mike is going to move to upstate New York with his new wife Jamie.  While we’re very happy for them and hope that they are extremely happy on the their new adventure, Dan, Gwen and I are very sad to see them go.  We hope that they will be able to visit a lot, or that we will be able to meet up with them on some dive excursions around the world.  Mike talks of possibly taking up real estate on the mainland, but for a while he and Jamie will probably take some time off and relax.

While the business might be down a brother, the important thing for everyone to remember is that Mike is always going to be our brother and we love him dearly.  C3 is a symbol that has always stood for our unique and strong bond as brothers; we got our tattoos long before the C3 became part of our business name.  So please resist the urge to ask us if we’re going to change our tattoos or business name to C2.  :)

To completely switch gears, we all had a good time in December working with some fun people on a couple of commercial shoots.  The first was helping on an underwater part of a Hyundai commercial.  We were merely background help, actually called “grip” in the business.  The shoot was a lot of fun and we’re really learning a lot being around these much bigger production companies.  We’ve worked with a local company called Ehman productions a few times now, and they have been great to us with luck we’ll get to keep working with them on future shoots.  We’re not sure how long it will take to finish up the whole commercial, most of the shoot was out of the water too, so we really have no idea on a finish date.  As soon as we know, we’ll share our info.

The second shoot was much different.  It was for print ads and websites.  We got to help out with a famous photographer named Erik Almas and MK productions.  They were working to produce images for Genentech, a biochemical company working with cancer medicine.  These guys were from southern California, and they were really nice and fun as well.  We were around for three days of shooting with these guys and Gwen and Dan are actually in some of the pictures as models.  You can’t really tell it’s them though, but if you want to see the work you can look at Genentech’s website.  On the homepage there are images where you can see DNA strands in clouds, waterfalls and underwater beams of light.  Take a guess which one we helped with?  I’m actually not sure if the underwater ad is out yet, but we’ll keep you all updated when it becomes available.

The good news is that we’re meeting people in the business we’re hoping to crack into, if we keep working hard and impress the right people we might just get our chance to travel around the world living our dream and sharing our underwater Photography and Videography work even more!

Christmas on Maui was a blast.  We had one of the best parties we’ve had in a while.  We had a ping pong table in the driveway, Rock Band going on TV and more food than we did at Thanksgiving.  All of our fellow divers and friends came over to hang out and we almost stayed up to 11PM, which is amazing for us.  We’re usually asleep near 9! (Remember we wake up around 5 or earlier every day) 

Dan and I got to blow Gwen away with a puppy for Christmas.  She was so excited.  So we now have a new female yellow lab as part of our family.  We decided to call her “Mango.”  She is very cute, and so far she is very good.  So good that we’re even flirting with the idea of bringing home one of her brothers or sisters so she has someone to play with; she was one of 12 puppies in a rainbow litter.  We have to move at the end of the month, so depending on where we decide to move (on Maui) we’ll decided whether or not to get a second puppy.  We’ll see!  For some more pictures check out Gwen’s Facebook page: Gwen Cesere We love our new family member, and we’re excited for her to grow up with us.  Dan and I are even talking about the day when we can take her scuba diving with us; she’ll be the coolest dog ever.

Next time you visit Maui, make sure you ask to meet Mango!

After all of the fun and excitement of the last month you would think that we would be all ready for a big New Years party.  In truth, we even tried to have one.  Unfortunately, Gwen fell asleep at 8:30, while Dan and I tried to make it a bit later.  By 10:30 we were both sleeping on the couch by ourselves watching Family Guy.  It didn’t matter though, we had a great couple of weeks, and we were happy to get the rest.

The diving has been pretty good too.  The weather has been very nice, not too many big surf swells and not too much wind.  We got to swim with dolphins a few more times, and the whales are starting to show up everywhere.  It’s hard to drive the boat anywhere without seeing whales breathing, jumping, breaching, slapping and just hanging out.  Which makes us very excited to start helping out with our friend Rachel Cartwright and the Keiki Kohala Project ( doing whale research.  We’re hoping that this might be the year where we will really get some great whale photos as well as some interesting movie material.  Who knows, maybe we’ll get enough for a cool documentary or short TV show.   

Today, Sunday, Dan is out driving the Lahaina Divers boat with a bunch of long time friends and customers while I sit under the Banyan Tree and write and sell some of our photography.  Gwen is running around with Mango making sure she gets trained well.  I think she’s at Costco picking up food and hopefully a kiddy pool for the back yard so that Mango can begin her swimming/diving career early.

Happy New Year, we all hope you all have a wonderful 2010!  We’re sure it’s going to be a great year for everyone. 

Talk soon,

John and the whole C3 gang