Peter Schneider, originally from Berlin, Germany is our new Manta Visions Video & Photo Pro. Peter is a true professional in his field having worked for 12 years in German television, before moving to French Polynesia to create his own company – Underwatercam. In the 9 years he lived and worked on the atoll of Rangiroa, Peter spent more than 4000 hours with his cameras submerged.
Many of the images he brought to the surface, were used for international TV productions such as National Geographic TV, Discovery Channel and different European channels. One of the highlights of his career came when award winning underwater cinematographer Christian Petron asked Peter to work with him. Christian was the leading cinematographer for Luc Besson on the films “ The Big Blue” and “Atlantis” as well as many other films you might have seen.
On the last project the two worked together in 2009/2010, Peter was also the topside high definition (HD) broadcast camera operator. You want more info on that project? Pssst, this is still top secret, … but here is a short sneak preview of it:
In 2004 Peter produced, together with Rachel Campergue, a 52 minute documentary about shark finning in French Polynesia. This award winning film “Sharks of Rangiroa, from Legend to Reality” and the activities it triggered played an important role in the process of introducing a law against commercial shark fishing in French Polynesia. The bill was finally passed the 12th of April 2006.
“I believe the biggest enemies of sharks are fear, misconception and a lack of information. We simply don’t protect what we are afraid of and what we don’t understand. In my films I try to capture the beauty of these amazing animals. Every diver who ever had the chance to observe sharks in the wild can tell about their aura. Every diver who tells or even can show his family and friends pictures of himself diving with sharks, becomes somehow an ambassador for those fabulous creatures. I am happy and feel privileged to have the chance to accompany you on your dive. Giving you, with the films I make, a tool to change fear into fascination and respect.”
“When did I discover my sympathy for sharks you asked? I was around 4 years old, when my parents and I spent our summer holidays at the shores of the Baltic sea. I had this oval, red rubber-framed diving mask that I was so proud of. I dared to kneel down and submerge the mask into the ankle-deep wild waters of the Baltic ocean ….sea …I mean. Wow, I was so impressed, … it was just unbelievable what I saw. Everyone on the beach has to know, I thought. I left the water in such an excitement, ran from one canopied beach chair to the next to announce my discovery: “ Sharks,… there are sharks in the water, …full of sharks, …the water is full of sharks.” I can’t remember how my parents reacted,, but they weren’t much concerned and let me go again for deeper studies. Sharks were obviously the first fish I knew by name, …not red snappers, …but the snappers have the color my back became that day. I learned: sharks are no (little) man eating monsters and snakes are not the only creatures changing their skin.”
Do you believe Peter when he says “mama” was not the first word he spoke, …it was actually manta ….?
Ok, this was just to get the twist to another amazing story Peter has to share. In October 2007 he and his camera were at the right time in the right place. Two manta rays performed a beautiful mating dance in front of his eyes. We have seen this you might say, …but have you actually witnessed also the copulation of manta rays? Very few people had the chance to observe such behavior in wildlife and until know nobody else has captured it on video yet.
Peter wrote an article on it ,which was published in the British “Diver” magazine and several German magazines as well. You can read these articles online, …but to see the sparkling in Peters eyes when telling the story, you actually have to drop by.
“Manta rays are definitively the most graceful animals traveling the worlds’ oceans. To meet them in their habitat is every divers’ dream. If you are open to it, you can see that each animal has its different character and even mood. To interact with them is really something magic. Come as a guest, … sensitive and respectful and you will experience one of the most enchanted moments of your life and as a photo- or videographer,.you will take home the evidence of those magical encounters. Magic is the keyword here, … the magic of the manta rays of Yap, …and the magic of the Island of Yap has brought me here. The preserved nature and culture of the Island and the versatile diving Yap has to offer. I feel honored to be part of the professional team of Yap Divers. It is giving me the perfect support and working environment I need for my creative work at Manta Vision.”
Peter is also a PADI Open Water Scuba Instructor and PADI Specialty Underwater Videography Instructor.
He offers one day “Introductions into underwater videography” and three day PADI Underwater Videography Specialty Courses with certifications. Peter will be in Yap and ready to dive with you beginning in June.
The above was written by Peter to introduce himself to you. I have known Peter for years and am very excited to have him join our team at the Manta Ray Bay Resort & Yap Divers. Peter will add another dimension to what is already a top flight dive staff. His images will enhance our evenings as we project them on Mnuw’s big screen and his work will show up on our website very soon. When you are ready for the adventure of your life, please contact us, or your favorite travel professional, to book your trip. Myself, Jan, Peter and the staff all look forward to showing you the amazing island of Yap.
In the meantime, you can contact Peter at email: firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com and you can visit his website at www.underwatercam.tv.