The 11th annual Capturing Critters in Lembeh annual workshop has wrapped and what an incredible event it was! Lembeh Resort’s three visiting photo pros, Saeed Rashid, Alex Tattersall and Nicolas Remy, did an incredible job of keeping participants inspired and striving for their best shots throughout the week. As usual, the Capturing Critters workshop was packed with daily presentations, one-on-one sessions with the pros, and incredible dives and critters in the Lembeh Strait.
Lembeh Resort’s in-house team, including a marine biologist and dive guides, also spent time with participants, sharing their wealth of knowledge about the unique marine life and critter behavior to be found in the Lembeh Strait. Dive Center Manager Brigitte Gassner delivered slick organization and coordination of a busy schedule, while the resort team ensured that guests were well looked after and enjoyed phenomenal dining in-between dives and presentations.
Critter sightings this year were above and beyond, with some of Lembeh’s most iconic critters putting on phenomenal behavioral displays for participants. Some of the most notable stars of the week included blue-ring octopuses, sargassum frogfish, pygmy seahorses, tiger shrimp, Rhinopias, hairy frogfish, hairy octopuses, mimic octopuses, wunderpus octopuses, beautiful soft coral cowries, and a host of different nudibranch species.
During the presentations, participants learned from the pros about a number of topics, from basic image composition, focus and lighting through to techniques to reduce backscatter and post-dive editing in Adobe Lightroom.
The workshop has been brilliant. We’ve had so much fun, so many amazing images, and it couldn’t have gone better. Lembeh Resort is ideal for this kind of workshop—it’s a very warm place to be! The schedule was very well put together, and we had enough time in the water and enough time in-between dives to spend time with the participants. We’ve had amazing experiences with the dive guides, who found all the critters you could ever ask for.
One of the other things that I think is very special about this workshop is the fact that there were three of us (pros) teaching all sides of underwater photography, and the complementary angles and approaches that all of us have to underwater photography, and each of the participants was able to benefit from different things. We had various different levels, from very beginners up to very accomplished photographers, and I would say that every single one of them took away an awful lot of learning and experience.
It was great to see how participants also benefit from looking at how other people photograph particular subjects and how that inspires them to go down and try that kind of technique. I would say that these are just some of the key things which make this a very special experience for everyone involved, including us (pros).
During the workshop, we had quite a big group with different skill sets. Some participants were beginners and there were some very experienced photographers, but I think everyone got something out of it. Feedback from participants was that having three different photographers—Saeed, Alex and myself—teaching and sharing the way we do things really helped them, and it was interesting observing the different ways of working underwater. I have seen the participant photographers steadily improve during the week, meaning that their photos got better and better. I’ve seen a number of their photos that I wish I would have taken myself!
Lembeh Resort is always a great place for hosting this sort of workshop, because we have dive guides who have an exposure to photography. Most of them are photographers themselves, so they know how to help us find subjects that are well positioned. There’s also a Backscatter Authorised Photo Center with equipment to rent and I’ve seen quite a few participants taking advantage of this and renting snoots and accessories. The Photo Center does a great job of supporting everyone’s creativity and ability to try new techniques.
The workshop went really well. This is my second time hosting the Capturing Critters event—I was here in 2020. I was amazed by how slickly this really busy workshop is put together and yet again this year. We look at the schedule and it seems really busy, but then everything just slots into place. As pros, we host two presentations a day, make three dives, and everyone at the end of it has improved their pictures no end.
Lembeh Resort is the most perfect resort to host this type of event. It has enough room not only to accommodate all the guests, but there is also a vast camera room and fantastic audio-visual facilities for the pro presentations.
I really think the participants got a lot out of this. Not only did they have constant access to the three imported pros—that’s myself, Nicholas and Alex—but they also had the in-house photo pro here [Jacob Guy] with a fantastic Backscatter Authorised Photo Center, where they had the ability to hire kit, try out kit, and just get really hands on with not only the diving, but all of the equipment combined with all of our expert knowledge.
Capturing Critters in Lembeh 2025
The Capturing Critters workshop goes from strength to strength each year and the images produced in each annual workshop continue to portray why the Lembeh Strait is a world-famous destination for muck divers and underwater photographers. In 2025, Lembeh Resort will be hosting three more world-class photo pros: Ron Watkins (USA), Paul Duxfield (UK), and Renee Capozzola (USA). The week-long workshop will once again be packed with incredible diving, in-depth presentations, and one-on-one instruction and feedback.
The Capturing Critters 2025 workshop will be Lembeh Resort’s 12th annual workshop and takes place from January 11th to 17th, 2025. Contact Lembeh Resort for more information or to make a reservation: reservations@LembehResort.com.
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