One of my favourite times of year in Tonga is when Garrett and his family turn up for their annual pilgrimage to swim with the whales. I love the enthusiasm and connection they have with the whales. Their bucketlist journey takes them all around the world. Their latest v-blog really captures the essence of their last trip here with us in Tonga. Can’t wait to see you guys again next season. I love this video!!
June 1st – 11th 2019
This Lord Howe Island Photographic shootout event just got bigger and better. We now have options for wildlife and bird enthusiasts, snorkelers and water people and hard core divers alike. 3 different packages and 12 categories that you can compete for on land and in the water.
WIN Amazing Prizes!
Holiday Packages for 10 days including flights & Accommodation
Categories for Land based and underwater photographers
Attend Photo Workshops, with Scott Portelli
Awards Ceremony and Gala Dinner
Workshops with our Hosts
Dinner on Arrival
Gala Dinner and Presentation Night
Dive and Snorkel Gear
10 dives around Lord Howe Island
1 night dive
8 guided walks with local expert Jack Shick
3 boat trips with local expert Jack ShickSNORKELER’S AND NON DIVER’S PACKAGE
6 guided snorkels
4 guided walks with local expert Jack Shick
Categories (Maximum 25 Photos)
- Split shots
- Black and white
- Portfolio (6 photos)
If you want to join us for the Lord Howe Island Shootout and hone your skills at our workshops, please email email@example.com for more information.
The 2018 Humpback whale season is about to kick off and as we get closer to seeing these majestic gentle giants, I can’t help but think of some of the truly amazing encounters we had last season. After 17 years taking people to swim with whales, I am still pleasantly surprised by the multitude of different behaviours I observe that have rarely been seen before. Last year we had baby whales licking their lips with their big frilly tongues, adult interactive whales that would spy-hop inches in front of us, false killer whales trailing the boat, pilot whale pods extending for kilometers across the ocean. So much to see in a season.
But I think the highlight would have been the 15 plus Humpback whales pursuing each other in what is called a ‘heat run’. The heat run is the ultimate wildlife encounter, multiple whales competing for a female which can last for hours or even days. Males show a multitude of behaviours while in a heat run: bubble netting, open mouth gulping, physical contact, loud acoustic sounds, it is truly one of nature’s great events. After 17 years I have documented some of the most common and unusual behaviour seen by Humpbacks in the region, but it is truly heart-thumping and adrenaline-pumping action to be a part of.
Check out the footage capturing this amazing behaviour above and below the surface:
Dive Photo Guide (DPG) honoured me with their videographer of the month accolade, sharing some of my favourite videos alongside an interview on their website:
“If the name Scott Portelli means anything to you, it’s probably because either this archetypal amiable Aussie is a good mate, or you’ve feasted your eyes on his exceptional images. Over the years, this consummate pro has picked up numerous awards for his underwater photography, including the Natural History Museum’s Wildlife Photographer of the Year and national winner at the Sony World Photography Awards.
But Scott doesn’t just trek to some of the world’s remotest corners with only still imagery in mind. He’s also an accomplished underwater videographer who has filmed everything from leopard seals in Antarctica and humpbacks in Tonga to whale sharks in Papua New Guinea and, of course, the spectacular landscapes and seascapes Down Under. Oh, and if you need majestic aerial views of the planet’s extreme places, Scott’s also got you covered: He’s a licenced UAV pilot, too.
What ties together all of Scott’s work, however, is an impressive storytelling ability that allows him to capture succinctly the essence of his creature subjects, whether it’s in the single frame of a photo or the moving pictures of just one or two minutes of film.”
– Ian Bongso-Seldrup, Dive Photo Guide
Here’s a couple of the videos that DPG shared:
Falkland Islands Promotional Piece –
Humpback Whale Heat Run, Tonga –
I was also the DPG Photographer of the Week in 2015.
You can read the full interview here.