November 28, 2023

2012 Backscatter Grand Cayman Digital Shootout Was a Photographer’s Dream

The 2012 Backscatter Digital Shootout was not to be missed. Held June 16-23 at the Little Cayman Beach Resort, Scuba Diving Magazine‘s photo editor, Katy Danca Galli, dubbed it the “ultimate summer camp for for underwater photography nuts” and blogged about her experiences.

With workshops, hands-on instruction, gear demos and more, the event was an underwater photog’s dream. Check out photos and videos of participant experiences:

Gear tests: Participants had the opportunity to dive with some of the hottest cameras of 2012, including the Canon 5D Mark III, Nikon D800, Olympus OM-D EM-5, and many more.

Contest results: These are the beautiful winning images and videos from the Digital Shootout competition.

Shootout life: Fun videos and photo glimpses into what it was like to attend the Digital Shootout.

For more on this story go to: Wetpixel and Dive Photo Guide, and check out the Digital Shootout Vimeo channel.

The Digital Shootout, in its 11th year, is an annual, week-long event of underwater imaging workshops for the underwater photographer, presented by Backscatter. This year, the Shootout was held on Little Cayman at the Little Cayman Beach Resort, where a group of 80 participants and staff dived the Bloody Bay Marine Park each morning, attended afternoon seminars and nightly underwater imaging shows. Berkley White, renowned underwater photographer and owner of Backscatter Underwater Video & Photo in Monterey CA, shared his photo and video techniques and tips.

In the Classroom

The attendees also gained a greater understanding of organizing and post processing their photos by using Lightroom and Photoshop, taught by Sterling Zumbrunn and Erin Quigley. Video editing instructor, Mary Lynn Price, shared her best tips for underwater video story-telling, and how to share your video creations. Additionally, the guests were able to demo the latest underwater camera housings and accessories from manufacturers such as Aquatica, Nauticam, Light & Motion, Pegasus Thruster and Canon USA just to name a few. Over a ton of demo gear was shipped to Little Cayman specifically for this event. During this time, many of the staff were assigned to test prototypes and new gear in the marketplace, reporting their findings to the respective manufacturers. Detailed gear tests can be found here.

While The Digital Shootout is primarily a learning event, there is a friendly, optional contest at the end of the week, where the best images taken during the event are bestowed some fantastic prizes, totaling over $35,000. This year’s Jim Watt Award was presented to Mark Devillier from Lumberton, Texas. Jeff Honda, from Carmel Valley, CA won first place in the video competition. Other first place photo winners include: Philip Seys, Anthony Santos, Jeff Lemelin, Mark Devillier, Lureen Ferretti and Michael Maes. The complete contest results for the 2012 Digital Shootout can be viewed here

Registration is now open for the 2013 Digital Shootout in Bonaire, at the Divi Flamingo Dive Resort. For more information about next year’s underwater imaging workshop, please visit:

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