Underwater Cinematography

Diver with camera

AV8 Media is pleased to announce a series of courses designed to get you confident in shooting in underwater environments from swimming pools to oceans .There are a total of 4 modules but you may pick what you want to start with depending on your existing skill levels. participants with no diving experience at all should look at modules 2 to 4. Module 1 is

Using Freediving Principles

Using Diving Equipment

Underwater Filming For Fast Motion


Date: 08 - 10 Oct 2018 (Mon - Wed)
Duration : 3 Days (21 teaching hours)

Price : S$ 1700 (Before 7% GST)

When underwater, subjects can move in ways very different from on land. When shooting  fast motion underwater the camera has to be as fast as the human motion, moving in three dimensions  and ascending and descending freely.  In situations like these ,diving equipment becomes cumbersome and even restrictive.

The objective of this course is to train film-makers to shoot fast motion underwater with minimal diving equipment and for filmed subjects to perform better underwater for the camera ,using principles of freediving .

Recommended for directors, actors/actresses and camera operators.

In this course, participants will learn:

    . Shots that are suitable for fast motion filming
    . Environmental conditions
    . Proper weighting with the camera and housing
    . Streamlining underwater movement for better shots
    . Equipment for fast motion filming
    . Safety measures
    . The physiological aspects of breath-holding
    . How to extend filming time
    . Underwater styling and make-up considerations
    . Pool practices
    . Practice at depth (sea condition)
    . Pre-requisites:
        . Must be medically fit for underwater activities
        . Complete a 200-metre/yard swim or 300-metre/yard swim using a mask, fins and snorkel without stopping
    . All participants must have their own underwater video equipment. Diving equipment will be available.

Fundamentals of  Underwater Shooting

70% of the Earth is covered with water and  there are far more unexplored realms below than on land. Filming underwater has vast potential for story and production value . Be it in the ocean or in the pool, it adds another dimension to cinematic production.

In order to shoot  underwater, the participant must know his filming and underwater equipment well and know how to manouver properly with this equipment . Proper training to overcome the challenges of an underwater shot can provide truly rewarding returns.

The objective of this course is to train participants to film underwater, both in the pool and in the open water environment. Recommended for directors, camera operators, DOPs and producers.

Topics Covered include :

    • The objectives of filming underwater
    • The look and feel of the moving image underwater
    • Sight, sound and temperature, how these factors affect camera work
    • Proper weighting for the cameraman
    • Equipment requirements for filming underwater
    • Accessories for camera
    • Ethics of filming in the sea
    • Practice in the pool and sea
    • Underwater Videographer certification

Duration of 5 days, 2 days locally and 3 days overseas.

Cost of travel and accommodation (Estimated at  S$ 250)  are not included in the course fee and are borne by the participant:

Duration : 5 Days ( 35 teaching hours)

Price : TBA

Shooting In Different Underwater Environments

Just as with different terrains and climatic conditions on land, film-makers will be exposed to varying conditions while shooting underwater. Through an understanding and guided exposure to some of these environments, the film-maker can then adapt competently, with the skills and right equipment, and incorporate these elements to enrich his story. Recommended for directors, camera operators, DOPs and producers.

In this course, participants will learn:

    • Understand different marine environments for filming
    • Filming in shallow water
        ◦ Crossing the boundary between land and sea
        ◦ Benign conditions
    • Filming in deep water
        ◦ Objectives for filming in deep water
        ◦ Lighting effect in deep water
    • Filming at night
        ◦ Negative space for filming
        ◦ A different look at existing sites
    • Planning and mapping out your underwater working space
    • Specialised equipment for different environments
    • Proper weighting with more filming equipment
    • Hazards from the environment
    • Logistics for filming in marine environment
    • Content generation with awareness of current issues with the ocean, eg marine resource management, shark extinction and coral bleaching.
    • Practice at sea
    • Pre-requisite: Underwater Imaging Diver , medical clearance.
    • All participants must have their own underwater video equipment. Diving equipment and lighting rigs will be provided.

Duration of 4 days, 1 day locally and 3 days overseas.

Duration : 4 Days (28 teaching hours)

Price : TBA

Underwater Film Production

Film production involving underwater work requires a specialised crew, keen awareness of the local regulations and niche production knowledge.  Directors and Producers need to know the options available to them and work within their resources. It is imperative for crew involved with underwater operations to be trained properly for their roles. Being underwater, the environmental factor is against them, but with proper training and management, we can prevent the entire production set from being jeopardised. Recommended for directors, camera operators, DOPs and producers.

The objective of this course is to train participants to fulfill the framework requirements that regulate underwater film operation in a specific area.

In this course, participants will learn:

    . Production scope of underwater operations
        . In confined benign conditions (in a pool or aquarium)
        . In open water (sea)
    . Awareness of the relevant local laws and regulations governing underwater media production, in accordance:
        . Ministry of Manpower (MOM)
        . Workplace Safety and Health Council (WSHC)
        . Singapore Standards SS 511
    . Roles and responsibilities on set
    . Budgeting for diving camera operators and respective crew
    . Underwater communication system
    . Safety requirements for operations involving underwater filming
    . Risk assessment
    . Location permission for underwater filming
    . Safety training for underwater media operations for enclosed benign conditions
    . Hazard management during underwater filming
    . Practice at sea
    . Pre-requisite: Advanced Open Water Diver or equivalent, and Digital Underwater Imaging Diver certification.
    . All participants must have their own underwater video equipment. Diving equipment and lighting rigs can be provided.

Duration of 5 days, 2 days locally and 3 days overseas. Travel fees of about S$ 250 are not included in the fee.

Duration : 5 Days ( 35  teaching hours)

Price : TBA

About Your Instructor


Edmund Low

Edmund has over a decade of experience as an image creator and 15 years’ of scuba diving experience as an instructor, currently holding the rank of IDC Staff Instructor. He has done commercial  photography and videography work for  clients, such as Keppel Marina, National Museum of Singapore and Philippine Department of Tourism. Known for portraiture and lifestyle imagery, clients have also been engaging him for underwater filming and safety consultation. Edmund shares his passions by conducting courses for his various areas of expertise, having taught photography for over 5 years, yoga and freediving. He is an AIDA and PADI Freediving Instructor, certified commercial diver and trained as a technical diver as well. Combining his media and diving skills, Edmund has created a suite of programs for training media professionals for underwater filming operations.

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