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UPY 2018 Compact - Winner
'Dancing with the giants' - Simone Matucci
Escaping the New Zealand winter for a magical week in Tonga's underwater dreamland dancing with whales, my wife and I spent 5 days and nights at sea, sailing the Ha'apai islands & swimming with humpbacks. Not another single boat was in sight all week. The beauty of the encounters that we had are truly transcending. These two adult humpbacks had such a connection with us in the water, literally "dancing" .. it was the most wild & incredible thing I have probably witnessed in my entire life. Humpback whales are such a magnificent species and they need our protection. The entire ocean needs our help. Now is the time more than ever, before it is too late .. before we lose it all. I hope that my photography brings out the ocean conservationist in all of us and helps to spread awareness to help save the ocean!
Judge's comment: What better example can there be of the old adage "F8 and be there" except that today's compact cameras are so capable (and this takes nothing away from the photographer) that it should now be "Be there and press the shutter".
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