Swimming into virtual reality

In June, I joined cameraman Richard Kickbush on an adventure, travelling to Lady Elliot Island in Queensland to join the heroic marine biologists of Project Manta (again).

The difference was that this time, instead of playing Citizen Scientist, or writing about the Project Manta work, I was working with Richard to shoot interviews and underwater footage for virtual reality 360-degree video.

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Camera genius Richard Kickbush setting up the underwater 360 degree camera.

I don’t want to say too much about it, until we can unveil the finished product, but it promises to be an epic step in a new direction for my career in pushing and exploring new media and devilry platforms.

I learned a hell of a lot from Richard, who shoots across many styles and deliveries, and knows more about underwater 360 than anybody I’ve met. It was a great trip, even if I was battling sinus sickness the entire time, which is not ideal when diving twice a day.

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One of the manta rays of Lady Elliot Island. Project Manta is researching and helping to protect them.

We had lots and lots of close encounters with mantas, a tiger shark swam past and whales were regularly singing while we were diving, or swimming past and waving fins when we were back on the beach.

God, I love my job sometimes.

I’ll say more about the project when I can.

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