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| I enjoy observing and photographing marine
life whether tidepooling, snorkeling, technical diving, or visiting
aquariums. I was introduced to the ocean at an early age, fishing and
visiting tidepools with my family. I learned to surf (kneeboard) at 12 and began
building surfboards soon after. To stay busy while the surf was flat, I started
free-diving to spear fish and collect shells, and got my NAUI Scuba certification in 1984 (I
take only pictures now, not live animals). I am employed as a Diving Safety Specialist at the
University of Hawaii at Manoa and operate this website and stock
photography business from home. I also teach classes on underwater
photography in Honolulu. Certifications include PADI Instructor, AP
Diving Inspiration rebreather diver, Scuba Repair Technician for most
brands, PSI Cylinder Inspector, Recompression Chamber Operator, Dept. of
Interior Motorboat Operator. I attended the Kamehameha
Community College, and the University of Hawai'i at Manoa and earned a certificate from the
Marine Option Program (MOP) for work in marine education and biological surveys on
Moloka'i, Kaua'i, and Hanauma Bay. Employment history includes training dolphins,
diving, and veterinary lab support for the Navy, Windward Dive Shop, manager of
Midway Sport Diving at Midway Atoll
NWR, marine educator/dive officer/boat &
recompression chamber operator with Rapture
Marine Expeditions, survey expeditions of the Northwestern
Hawaiian Islands, and educator for the Waikiki Aquarium.
Other interests include native Hawaiian plants, wildlife, jazz, and airplanes.
My photographic background began in 1990 while
teaching fish ID classes for fellow MOP students. The school's slide
collection was limited and quality varied so I decided to teach myself how to
use a real camera. After wasting lots of
film taking horrible little fish photos (the wrong subject for a Nikonos), I spent all my savings
for a housed autofocus SLR system. Within a few dives I was
completely hooked on underwater photography! I contribute images to the Marine
Option Program, Hanauma
Bay, and other educational programs, and sell stock images for local hotel
publications, calendars, and marine life books including Hawaii's
Fishes, Hawaii's Sea Creatures, and Corals of the World.
We are currently using Canon EOS 500D (Rebel T1i) and G9
cameras in Ikelite housings and dual DS160 & DS51 Substrobes.
Lenses include Canon EF-S 10-22mm, EF-S 18-55mm IS, EF-S 60mm macro, EF
100mm macro, Tokina 10-17mm Fisheye, Sigma 120-400mm OS. Up to 2009
we used Pentax SF-1, PZ-1, Z-1, and
MZ-S film SLR's and *ist DL digital SLR's with
Pentax DA 10-17mm Fisheye, DA 18-55mm, DA 35mm macro Limited, F 50mm
macro, D-FA 100mm macro, Sigma 15mm fisheye, 24mm, Tamron SP 90mm macro
1:2, 90mm + 2x teleconverter, & DL 75-300mm. Ikelite housings, and dual
Substrobe 50/100's. Fujichrome Velvia 50 was our favorite film and it
was processed at home. Slides are scanned with a Canon F4000US film scanner.
Compact digital cameras include Casio Z40, Canon
G9, and Canon S95 in Ikelite housings, dual Substrobe 51's, and Epoque 2x macro and
Yuko Okano Stender
|Yuko is originally from Tokyo, Japan and earned a BA in Liberal
Studies-Marine Science from the University of Hawai'i at
Hilo and Masters degree in Geography at the University of Hawaii at Manoa.
She is an enthusiastic animal-lover, surfer and PADI Divemaster. She has experience as a Assistant
Trainer and Bilingual Interpreter at Sea Life Park in Waimanalo,
Aquaculture technician at the Oceanic Institute, and Environmental Lab
technician, and Educator with Rapture Marine Expeditions,Waikiki Aquarium,
Marine Option Program, and 'Alu Like. Yuko
was Scuba certified in 1987 and began taking underwater photos in 1992.
She is currently pursuing a PhD in Geography at the University of
Hawaii at Manoa.