When you travel as much as we do, you quickly accumulate a huge amount of photos. Even though we do our best to catalog and keyword our images as we take them, we are continuously behind in cataloging our images. Not only that, we also have a large backlog of thousands of images.
Couldn’t this be something you can outsource? I’ve been thinking about just that, but it’s probably quite difficult. You need to find someone that is knowledgeable about marine life or is capable of looking up species in books or on the Internet. As if that wasn’t hard enough, you also have to trust this person with your images. Maybe we’ll find someone one day, but I’m not holding my breath.
On our recent trip to the Banda Sea, Julie and I visited the Banda Islands. These islands are in the middle of nowhere, and would have been forgotten in history if it weren’t for one small detail: they were the only islands in the world where the spice nutmeg grew. In the 16th and 17th century these tiny little islands were the center of the spice trade, and therefore the center of many sea battles. My native country The Netherlands (Holland) played a big, and sometimes sinister, part in all the trade and fighting.
Even back then corporate power was almost equal to the power of kings and queens, especially the company called VOC, which in English is known as the Dutch East-Indies Company. It was a major trading company, and had large stakes in the spice trade, and therefore the spice islands.
During our short stay on Banda Neira, where an old dutch fort still dominates the harbor, we found some locals selling old VOC coins. The locals find them when they build houses or work on the fields and I bought one that is more than 250 years old. There are lots of them in dutch museums so it’s not that rare, but it’s a nice reminder of this trip to the past.
Recently both our print partners have started offering Canvas options. After doing some test prints we’re confident that canvas prints are a very nice addition to our glossy prints. We’ve already sold several Canvas prints and the response has been positive. If you’re interested in a Canvas print please visit our dutch or worldwide Print Gallery.
Like any other prints we offer the canvas prints come with an absolute guarantee. If you’re not happy contact us and we’ll help you with the problem.
I’ve been really happy with my 1TB eSATA 2BIG drive from LaCie, so when I noticed they have a 2TB version I couldn’t resist buying it too. I’ll be using it to do all of our primary backups.
We use a 3 layer system for our digital assets (photo’s, music, video..).
- Our originals are on a 1TB 2BIG eSATA drive. These are networked to several other machines in case we’re working on one of them.
- I make automatic backups to a backup drive. As of today that’s a 2TB 2BIG eSATA drive. I also backup our music to this drive.
- Once every month or so I make a backup of the backup and bring that to my office. This is to prevent loss due to theft or fire, the most likely causes of image loss.
The only thing that bugs me is that under Windows XP the access to these drives on a networked computer is really slow. I can make it a bit faster by assigning a drive letter on the networked machine but it’s still slow. On the main desktop though these disks are lightning fast!
I changed our online journal from a home made system based on MySQL to WordPress. I have been meaning to use some kind of open source software instead of my own, but always feared I was not going to be able to fit it in our design. That fear seemed to have been unnecessary, WordPress was a breeze to install, but more important, a breeze to theme. I created a theme to fit our own design in less than a day.
It should be a lot easier now to maintain an active journal, so keep watching this space.
Cor has written another article for Duiken Magazine, this time about searching for macro critters. We have become quite adept at finding small macro life, which came in handy on our latest trip to Komodo where we found lots of undescribed species. The article shows some simple guidelines you can follow to improve your chances of finding small macro life.
You can read the article on our articles page.
We’ve returned from our trip to Komodo. It was by far the best trip Julie and I ever did. Not only did we have great people on board, including Eric Cheng, Norbert Wu and Andy Sallmon, we also got to see many critters we’ve never seen before. Horseshoe Bay is now our most favorite dive site.
Not only did we see cool stuff underwater, we also saw a Komodo Dragon in the wild. As it entered the beach we were anchored at we rushed to shore and took some photo’s. The dragon was quite nervous but let us get really close.
The Kararu explorer was a nice boat, even though it seems to lack a bit in maintenance. We had a lot of equipment failures, which was quite annoying. But the amazing wildlife makes up for it, so we’ll go back anytime.
Julie and I joined Fathoms on a trip from Raja Ampat, through the Banda Sea, to Flores. On paper this trip sounded really nice, and mostly it was very nice diving. What we had not realised was the amount of steaming we had to do, which greatly reduced our number of possible dives. We had 3 full days of steaming, and many 10+ hour voyages.
Not only was there a lot of moving, the boat also had a lot of trouble. On day three the nitrox failed because the main generator died. So now we’re not only limited in the number of dives, but also in bottom time. Since a lot of the dives are done in the 50-80 feet range, this really impacted our diving.
Visiting the Banda Islands was quite nice though, and so was snake island, an island that is home to thousands of sea snakes.
We’re joining Eric Cheng on one of his expeditions to the Solomon Islands. Because we like the Bilikiki so much we’ve decided to add two trips to that, one before and one after Eric’s trip, for a total of four weeks of diving.
Read more about Eric’s trip on the Wetpixel expedition page.
In july 2007 we’re going on a trip with Eric Cheng to the Bahamas. This trip will features Tiger Sharks and Dolphins, two animals that Julie and I have not seen before underwater. We’re really looking forward to it.
For more information check out the wetpixel expeditions page.