Blue Winks - It Takes Friends

June 21st, 2009

Blue Winks - It Takes Friends

The message we see in this beautiful video is all about symbiosis, living in harmony with others, because when you work together everybody wins.  In the words of the great Native Hawaiian scholar, Mary Kawena Pukui, who preserved daily proverbs and sayings,  ‘A‘ohe hana nui ke alu ‘ia.  No task is too big when done together by all.

This is true about making films.  It takes lots of talented people working in tandem.  Two of the most talented and gutsy filmmakers I know are Peter and Rachel Schneider whose collaboration and expertise of 20 years in underwater photography and cinematography have yielded high art. And the best kind of art because their work educates and preserves the planet's indigenous cultures and environments.  

They live in French Polynesia but have shot all over the Pacific Ocean and have clocked thousands of hours of shark and manta ray footage. If you're interested in seeing more Blue Winks please let us know and we'll make this a regular series.  

Peter and Rachel are dedicated to preserving the oceans and their last doc film, "Sharks of Rangiroa" is not to be missed.  Even though I have enjoyed a bowl of shark's fin soup on those rare special occasions I now think twice about encouraging the practice. In their film you see hundreds of sharks up close and personal in their natural habitat and you do not sense danger.  The filmmakers have their own explanation for why they believe sharks have been involved in attacks against divers and their documentation on the subject is impressive.  As China creates a middle class more families can afford to serve the prestigious shark's fin soup as a kind of mark of status, so at weddings, graduations, and other celebrations the expensive dish (thousands are spent on a single fin) is now in demand more than ever and shark finning has increased 100 fold.  Viewing is not for folks who easily get queasy at the sight of blood so be warned.  The story however is worth your attention.

To see more of their incredible underwater film visit Water on Pacific Network's Science Channel. 

To purchase copies of the Blue Winks series and a copy of their doc film, Sharks of Rangiroa, please visit Pacific Network's Store.

Posted in 1 | 6 Comments »

6 Responses to “Blue Winks - It Takes Friends”

  1. moke young:


    I don't know what I would think of viewing that strange looking fish but it was surely nice to see it "just along for the ride" as if it never had a care in the world while slithering in synchronization with the Honu.

    I used to dive alone in near the Kona Surf hotel and it could be pretty hairy sometimes seeing huge boulders & strange creatures while hoping too that nothing approached unexpectedly from your blind side; Boo!

    The words & insight of Mary Kawena Pukui are powerful and I've come to understand that through studying her written compositions & her careful selection of lyrics are always cleverly linked as the versus seem to build upon one another while the chorus punctuates & accents the entire piece.

    I've found that many of the traditional Hawaiian tunes popular yesterday & today, were written by Mary Kawena Pukui to include Maddy Lam. Additionally, many artist sought their expertise regarding translation & correct pronunciation.

    According to many expert testimonies I've read during the recent & past USA presidential campaign, the most common denominator appears to be the lack of participation within communities nationwide that is vital to continued growth & somehow we need to do what it takes to immediate actions and perhaps starting with ourselves taking an active role so matter how small.

    I read recently about putting those whom are less fortunate upon your back no matter what and especially during the steepest climb we face together as peoples, nations, cities, communities and families.

    In Hawai'i, it has been that way with many families with generations working together while uplifting and supporting those whom may be less fortunate.

    "Two heads are better than One" "Two Wong's Don't Make a White"

    Mahalo's to Peter & Rachel for their works and dedication to oceanography.

    It reminds me of Jacques-Yves Cousteau & his teams masterful works & inherent messages bringing the wild & unknown facts to ones home living spaces equipped with a finite & adventurous message(s).

    "It's every mans obligation to put back into the world at least the equivalent to what he takes out of it"

    Albert Einstein

    Keep up the great works bringing news and interesting topics to the HA table because it's good for the soul.

    With Aloha,

    Moke Young

    PS. That turtle can munch and devour coral like there's no tomorrow! Whoa!

  2. elee:

    Aloha Moke,

    Great to hear from you again. I was cracking up at your last comment, "That turtle can munch and devour coral like there's no tomorrow! Whoa!" because I thought the same! Wow, how does a turtle digest coral?

    Who was Maddy Lam? I've heard the name but know very little. I did meet Mary Kawena Pukui's daughter, Pat Namaka Bacon, at Bishop Museum one day. She was writing on small index cards and when asked, she said she was "re-translating" Hawaiian writings. I thought that was odd and prodded her to tell me more. She said that several translations had been done by "university schooled Hawaiian language speakers" and that their interpretation of the language was not quite right compared to understanding the same phrase with a different interpretation by native language speakers who learned Hawaiian in the home, from their elders. I should keep clear of this issue but this is the truth and she has volunteered countless hours doing this for Bishop Museum.

    Ok, Moke, you got me going now and I have asked my diver friends what are the two fishes (could one be a small nurse shark?) on the turtle's back. Peter is in Mozambique and Rachel is in France for her holiday and neither are at computers as per his email this morning and they won't be in Tahiti when we are there for Pacific Network to film the Raiatea Helm "Faraway Heaven - Back to the Source" concert and documentary film this July. We will be documenting her travel to Papeete and on to the island of Raiatea ("faraway heaven") and streaming clips to this blog and to from there every day. Thanks for your wonderful email. Very best, edgy

  3. Harry Ito:

    Loved those great underwater pictures. Very vivid photography and make me fondly remember the days I used to scuba dive. Thanks for sharing!

  4. moke young:

    Aloha Edgy,

    I've felt for many years now that Raiatea Helm was Hawaii's finest young singer because of her easy going and sweet melodic style plus having the same blood of a True Hawaiian; George Helm one of my longtime hero's for his falsetto style and courage as an intelligent Hawaiian activist whom found it very important to be educated & experienced beyond the bounds of Hawai'i & Polynesia.

    I could here it in his voice and and individual whom inspired me make great sacrifices living abroad.

    "It's a jungle out here!"

    It was quite evident during her recent NYC performance at the Symphony Space alongside Keola & Moanalani Beamer to include Charles Ka'upu where the audience was captivated by the words and voice of a fine looking lady all dolled up and complete with a tan and soft innocent sounding voice.

    She performed solo in the beginning and I was very proud of her performance because it was clean & when you go solo, that's when you really can tell of a musicians true talent or lack there of. Raiatea then performed with the entire cast while even fitting into another dress that I though made good stage sense.

    When I would play her CD in the Surf Shop I once managed, the patrons would always appear to be ultra relaxed and would always inquire indicating their authorization of music from a far off land and despite the language barrier, the English or Hapa tunes served as a nice complement and extension of her range.

    There was a Jewish gent in the audience whom wrote a famous tune performed & popularized by Nora Jones and Raiatea spoke of their friendship meeting at a writing camp in Kauai that was impressive for so many reasons.

    My three girls & family visiting from Hawai'i spent about thirty minutes with Nora Jones on her balcony observing July Fourth Fire Works in NYC & came ever so close to giving her surfing lessons here in Montauk, NY through my Hawai'i surfer friend Les Saito whom is her neighbor.

    The story of Raiatea's visit to the South Pacific is a story within itself and I see very good things coming from your efforts. Dennis Pavao & the Hui Ohana where very well liked down south along with Braddah IZ.

    Good luck! I hear that Tahiti is what Hawai'i once was 2000 years ago?

    My friend Mike Kaawa use to have this Tahitian Guitar in his house that was kinda strange at first until the guys mastered it and incorporated it into their works that was interesting and especially when blended with the steel drum.

    I was very happy to see that Keola was passing along his Mana because that was the exact hopes of Auntie Genoa Keawe to include his late Mom. My Aunt Alice taught Keola how to play slack key and now passing along mana to a Hawaiian of the opposite sex that's like a full circle Karma-Zen like occurrence!

    Mahalo's for the info about Mary Kawena Pukui & her daughters words. The words by those folks are important because that is where many of us have learned & it was quite important to be observant and a champion listener.

    I wished that I would have had a better liking for writing as I do know because it would have been exciting to quote folks and document all of the teachings not to mention the songs like Salomila, USCD, Sapora Mi and the host of Hawaiian drinking songs.

    Eddie Kamae paid great tribute to Mary Kawena Pukui & his book tells all about her expertise interpreting our cultural language & past like no other. I believe that one is blessed by blood, knowledge and most of all their imagination.

    There's a Hawaiian Songbook entitle Na Mele o Hawai'i that was prepared to preserve our music with respect to the many composers and one every Ukulele enthusiast should own because in many cases, it offers the Kaona or hidden meaning(s) where other documents of it's kind don't.

    It's so funny because Mary Kawena Pukui helped many to correctly translate their compositions found within Na Mele o Hawai'i that sends a very clear message.

    In my family we had Uncle Eddie Young whom was the translator and helped me and many others select our children's Hawaiian middle names; Kanoelani "the mist from heavan", Kaleiokalani "The Garland from Heavan" and Pi'ilani "The Stairway to Heavan". Uncle Eddie told me that it was also the meaning I had deep in my heart that factored into the translations. Uncle Eddie was Danny Kaleikini's favorite Uncle!

    All I know is that when I return home, there's going to be some serious writing going on Crouching Lion, Waimea Valley, Chinaman's Hat, Kuuloa, The Mokapu District, Waipio, Kahakuloa etc.....

    Mahalo's for extracting good ole thoughts from my memory.

    Today, I celebrate my 49th birthday with three other of my Surfa friends whom share the very same day; Tony Caramanico former US east coast surfing champion & famed surf artist highly influenced by Rabbit Kekai, Craig Leider longtime Montauk, NY Surf & Restaurant entrepreneur influenced by Duke Kahanamoku and Mike Ramos, personal manager to Jimmy Buffett.

    If I had remained a home body, so many interesting would have never ever been and the coincidence above may just be a genuine example of spiritual fate & a super natural force because we all channel the Aloha Spirit that was inspired by Duke Kahanamoku thanks to Alexander Hume Ford whom used Surfing to promote the culture and peoples of Hawai'i!

    Here's the living example:

    Keep up the great work & project with Raiatea that could well be a timeless piece!

    Never underestimate the power of Aloha & when focused it can provide living examples & a known path to understanding life as is the case with Buddhism.

    I'd like to know one day what really fuels your soul?

    With Aloha,

    Moke Young

  5. Michael:

    Hey, have you seen this news article?
    New details about Michael Jackson's Death Emerge
    I was wondering if you were going to blog about this...

  6. KonstantinMiller:

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