Digital Photo & Video Mania

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Date: December 7-16, 2004
Destination: Bligh Water, Fiji
Returning Passengers: Jack & Sue Drafahl, Jane Titley

Fish portraits by Matt Bailey: yellowmask surgeonfish, common lionfish, cheek-lined maori wrasse.

Coral cod and cleaner shrimp. Photo: Jack & Sue Drafahl.

Sue Drafahl, together with husband Jack, onboard to help with digital photography and editing techniques,   Bobby Maruvada and Anat Grant, onboard to shoot a chapter for their ScubaCore DVD Journal,


Jack and Sue Drafahl joined us for the millionth time and were busy as always: testing new cameras and underwater rigs, snapping some last minute photos for their new book, helping out those of us less digitally aware (everyone), and bending the doctor’s orders – but thankfully not the titanium. Anat Grant and husband Bobby Maruvada, despite their many sat phone calls, managed to make “work” for their ScubaCore DVD magazine look like a vacation… finding time to jam with the boys, working hard on a kava habit, and throwing themselves off the top deck. Terry Clayton’s birthday celebrations ensured double desserts for wife Terry (and the rest of us), but at the same time provided the final excuse for the otherwise-would-be night divers. Likewise Linda Erkelens, onboard with husband Ron Dion, celebrated another year of life, prompting yet another double dessert night and keeping yet more would be night divers from getting wet. Linda also scored the best view of that free swimming blue ribbon eel. NAI’A’s own USA connection, Jane Titley, came aboard once again to remind herself why people keep sending her checks, and was visually blown away when caught in the middle of an enormous barracuda ball. Matt Bailey, on his first of no doubt many NAI’A adventures, left with an awesome collection of pics – nay, works of art – after getting wet on nearly every dive. Matt Adams and Heather Widlund escaped from their mountain home to enjoy some fun in the tropical sun. Tom and Lavonne Wicks benefited from what was Part II of their ‘Jack and Sue digital photography course’. And Alex Pue, the quiet achiever, blasted away a billion pictures all the while camouflaged as a blue ribbon eel.

Parrotfish and squirrelfish. Photos: Matt Bailey,

Fiji scenic. Photo by Alex Pue.



Thanks again for another great trip in our favourite home away from home. Be prepared, the Great Northwest Diver will be back! And Sue too!
Jack & Sue Drafahl, Tillamook OR,

This was our first trip on NAI’A, and the diving was excellent… but even more so, the crew and the trip directors were fantastic! The kava party was fun, and maybe someday I can come back and play with the band again! The rest of the dive world could really learn a lot from the way NAI’A runs the dive deck and the operation of the skiffs. Truly first class! Hope to return and see the whales of Tonga someday.

Bobby Maruvada, ScubaCore,

Good variety of dive sites, and the crew had a great attitude and were really helpful.
Anat Grant, ScubaCore,

Semicircle angelfish and longfin bannerfish. Photos by Alex Pue.

Flabellina nudibranch. Photo by Tom Wicks.


What a great adventure with awesome diving! The crew was wonderful, with genuine caring for all of us. Thanks for the memories.
Tom & Lavonne Wicks, Roseburg OR

What a great crew, boat and atmosphere. You certainly have premium scuba travel sussed. Will definitely be back.
Matt Bailey, Ocean Photographic, London & Aukland

You made our first liveaboard experience something we want to repeat — not just the spectacular diving (healthy reefs, prolific fish), but the crew and boat. No other operation could live up to it, so we’ll have to return. Thanks for treating us right!
Matt Adams & Heather Widlund, Telluride CO

Fiji scenics. Photos by Jack & Sue Drafahl.

Golden Damsel. Photo by Alex Pue.


The “Canadians” had a wonderful trip! The NAI’A crew are the best! Simple, organized, no hassle, easy going diving, unrestricted by “rules”, we appreciated that. Thanks for the birthday cake for Terry’s birthday! Sorry Suli about the “little visitors” we planted in our room — you were a good sport about it, plus you got even by putting them on our cake. Thanks,
Terry & Marilyn Clayton, North Vancouver, Canada

My best birthday ever… and the best diving, staff and ship. Hope to return.
Linda Erkelens, San Francisco & Auckland

Soft coral spicules. Photo by Jack & Sue Drafahl.   Moray and cleaner shrimp. Photo by Tom Wicks.


Heather Widlund and Matt Adams.
Tom and Lavonne Wicks.
Ron Dion at Somosomo Village. Photo by Linda Erkelens.
Freckled hawkfish. Photo: Jack & Sue Drafahl.
Matt Bailey.
Pink Anemonefish. Photo by Linda Erkelens
Matt Adams. Photo by Heather Widlund.
Bobby Maruvada, honourary member of the Undenai'ables.
Marilyn Clayton.
Jane Titley.
Chromodoris nudibranch. Photo: Matt Adams & Heather Widlund.
NAI'A's Jedi Divemaster, Richie, gets the munchies. Photo by Linda Erkelens.
Jack Drafahl.
Terry Clayton.
Alex Pue.
NAI'A's Steve Reilly teaches Brigg Edwards the PADI way.
Linda Erkelens at the kava party.
The ScubaCore team hard at work. Photo by Matt Adams & Heather Widlund.