JASON ISLEY: DOING THE SPLITS
Jason trained as an underwater cameraman in Australia before moving to Sabah in Malaysian Borneo to co-found underwater filming and photography company Scubazoo. Jason has filmed all over the world on productions including the Disney IMAX production Sacred Planet, Journeys of a Lifetime with Minnie Driver, Nick Baker’s Weird Creatures for National Geographic channel, Perfect Predators for Discovery Channel’s Shark Week and BBC’s Emmy award-winning Life series. From 2006 he focused on photography full-time, becoming the driving force behind Scubazoo’s publications division. He was pivotal in the production of their first book Sipadan-Mabul-Kapalai, Sabah’s Underwater Treasure, and then managed the publication of six more coffee table books for Scubazoo including the quirky Small Blue World. He is constantly in the field shooting for Scubazoo’s book projects and also behind the scene shots for large productions such as the recent BBC Blue Planet ll series. Here's a selection of his favourite split shots - scroll down and vote for your pick of the portfolio and win a subscription to DIVE.
Sometimes you don’t need anything exciting underwater, if your topside portion good enough then the empty sandy seabed can be enough, Palau Sibuan, Sabah, Malaysia
Mangroves are an amazing place for split levels and another very shallow image of a horseshoe crab hiding amongst the mangrove roots
f you are also shooting conservation projects then split level images really help illustrate what is happening. Here some volunteers are assisting with a false killer whale that had become stranded and became extremely weak. Sabah, Malaysia
Painted terrapins normally stay within muddy rivers amongst the jungle of Borneo, however, they have to reach the estuary mouths to lay their eggs, here this female is hiding amongst the mangrove, Sabah, Malaysia
Cape fur seals of South Africa are amazing fun underwater but spend a lot of their time on land, using this technique illustrates how clumsy they look on land compared to the acrobatic one underwater, Hout Bay, South Africa
I really enjoy taking the underwater housing into the jungle, not many people see the connection between the underwater life of the rivers and the thick rain forest of Borneo, here a soft shell turtle breaths air in between its ambush predation. Imbak Canyon, Sabah, Malaysia
Green turtle surfacing for air, Sipadan Island, Malaysia. I love the way the curvature of the surface mirrors the curvature of the turtle’s carapace
The Banyan Tree in the Maldives is a great place for photographing pink-whiptail rays as they are fed by the resort. Here a group of them swim extremely close to the beach, Banyan Tree, South Male Atoll, Maldive
This style of photography is great for documenting environmental issues such as this leatherback turtle being hunted. Indonesia
I love the irony that the bucket is called ‘Aquaproof’. Yes indeed it will last forever in the ocean, providing shelter to this oceanic triggerfish.
When there is behaviour happening from above and below then there is no better way to capture this, whale sharks being fed, Cenderawasih Bay, Indonesia
The water monitor lizard uses the ocean to hunt and escape from predators, this individual was hunting around a jetty at Palau Tiga Island, Malaysia
This style is great for capturing iconic sites such as the jetty at Sipadan Island, Malaysia
Bringing the low tide reef to the surface in Raja Ampat, Indonesia
Freediver Ai Futaki says hi to a green turtle resting at the ‘Drop Off’ at Sipadan Island, Malaysia
You don’t need deep water or crazy subjects for this technique, in fact sometimes it's better if the location is extremely shallow like this wreck sat in just 30cm of water. Wakatobi, Indonesia.
The actual split doesn’t have to be directly half way, in fact, I much prefer a very curved split which gives much more action to the image, here a whale shark is feeding at Cenderawasih Bay, Indonesia.
Pick your favourite image and win a sub!