About the Photos on The Right Blue

Manado Tua
We've been getting a lot of questions recently about the photos on The Right Blue, so we thought it might be good to answer those questions in one post.

First, unless otherwise plainly noted, ALL of the underwater photos on The Right Blue were taken by Bobbie. As of this writing, there are about six underwater photos on the entire blog that are not Bobbie's original work. All are identified clearly.

There are not too many terrestrial photos on The Right Blue, but those taken by anyone other than Bobbie or Jerry also are identified.

All of the underwater photos originally were shot on film, with a Nikonos V dedicated underwater camera, using an assortment of U/W Nikkor submersible lenses, with Ikelite SubStrobe and Nikonos underwater strobes for lighting. The transparencies were digitized by Jerry, using a Nikon Super COOLSCAN 5000 ED scanner.

In regard to photo editing and post-processing, we don't do a whole lot. We don't use PhotoShop at all, but we do use Picasa 2 and/or the Microsoft Digital Image Standard 2006 Editor to crop, straighten, and resize. Since the images were scanned from (old) transparencies, some had scratches which were digitally removed. We don't add effects or tinker with colors, other than to brighten some of the images, e.g., those shot inside wrecks. What you see is what was on the transparency.

The underwater photos on The Right Blue were taken over a period of many years. A few date back to the 1980s, although most are considerably more recent than that. We have an archive of over 6,000 underwater images. We know when and where each image was taken, and other details, because Bobbie is a compulsive record keeper: each image in the archive has a unique ID number that corresponds to a carefully maintained database that tells date, place, exact location, camera/lens/film information, species identification, and so on. This information was recorded as we went along.

Each underwater image ID also corresponds to a specific dive log entry. (Bobbie's dive logs are as meticulously kept as the photo logs!) So, when we want to tell about something that happened on a particular occasion at a particular dive site, we can readily find the image(s) to go with the story, and vice versa.

Some readers seem to have been confused or bewildered by the fact that we may tell a story set in Hawaii one day, in the Red Sea the next, and two days later post a photo from, say, Indonesia. How can we be in all those places in such a short space of time? Clearly they have not read our About page, or our page that tells how the Right Blue project came to be, where we explain that our stories and photos recount decades of diving experiences. These are reminiscences, not 'real-time' adventures.

But yes, we really did spend time in all those places. We really did see all those underwater sights, and we really did take all of the photos -- but it took us a lifetime!


  1. And what a lifetime it has apparently been! I really enjoy The Right Blue, and look forward to dropping in to see what gems you're offering us today.

    Tink *~*~* <=== a big fan!
    My Mobile Adventures *~*~*

  2. Thanks very much for your support, Tink.

    Bobbie & Jerry

  3. It's so much fun to follow your exciting blog stories and view your unique underwater photos, Bobbie!

    I come back to my often aksed question 'When is the Right Blue book due?' I can promise you it would be such a big success!

    Aloha, Pua

  4. I never read the "About" either, but I figured from the variety of locales that the pictures weren't sequential. I always enjoy the photos, even if they make me envious. ;-)

  5. Hi, a couple of the Staff members at a community I belong to, have been reading your blog and we've been discussing some of your posts... I'd greatly appreciate if you could contact me at anat@thereeftank.com

  6. We are very lucky to be able to be part of all these beautiful memories and photos. Sounds like you should have a museum Bobbie - your records and photos would fill it up! They are very valuable!

  7. All film...WOW that would be tough enough for me above water, but you do it all below. Man you guys are amazing !!

  8. @ Pua and Kathy - Both the book and the museum are right here -- called The Right Blue. ;-}

    @ Bernie -- Thank you very much for the compliment, however one look at your photos, and anyone would have to conclude that your comment is way too self-effacing.



We welcome your comments and invite your questions. Dialogue is a good thing!

Bobbie & Jerry