Thanks to Chris Hyde and Rebecca Butala for the nomination.
This picture is of one of my best friends from school who also happened to be an unbelievable athlete - Ben Ebel. It was taken almost 20 years ago, early 1995 at the newly opened Sydney Olympic Aquatic Centre in Homebush. And is still one of my favourite ever pictures, and goes to show you don't really improve with age, although you gotta keep trying!
I had to convince the staff at the pool that the "fish tank" I was using as a poor mans underwater housing was actually a real "underwater camera housing" and the glass would not break - which was kind of easier than it should have been....
I used a Ilford Delta film and a Nikon F4 with the prism removed (what a feature!) and a 20mm lens. While I held the fish tank just underwater I had my Dad assisting with a broomstick and a regular Nikon flash taped onto it, (borrowed from the SMH golden boy - Blondz, the broomstick from mum) so I could get the flash out over the top of Ben. I took about 24 frames of Ben doing backstroke starts and again processed and printed it at home. The best frame was actually on the clip test I did as it was my first ever underwater shoot and flash wasn't really my strong point either, so I was kind of nervous with the exposure. It was my second picture to run in the SMH (the first was forgettable) and massive thanks to Tim Clayton and Craig Golding for actually getting it in the paper and all of their advice and help over the years!