Working in the scuba diving industry … with a partner it’s better

If you are passionate about diving, you may have heard of the young Mokarran company (or it will be soon)

But do you know who is behind this new clothing company designed specifically for diving enthusiasts?

Focus on Mélo and Vincent a young couple full of energy, humor and ideas to develop ever more projects around the world of scuba diving.

And YES it’s possible to start today a job in the scuba diving business.

Starting in the business of scuba diving

Just like many of us, it’s when becoming an instructor that you starts a business so close to your passion.

Initiated very early ro scuba diving, these two nice person have traveled around the world before putting their hat in these distant islands of the Pacific Ocean.

Diving instructor since 1999, holder of a PADI international diving instructor, Mélo traveled around the world to exercise her passion: diving instructor in France, Thailand, Indonesia but also head of center in Egypt. All these years have helped her to build a solid professional experience.

While French Polynesia was a dreams for many years (her father traveled there for more than 15 years), she moved there in 2012 and runs dive centers there.

Une femme qui plonge à côté d'une raie en Polynésie
© Vincent Truchet

It’s in Polynesia that Melo meets Vincent.

Dive instructor since 2008 for many centers between Corsica, the Caribbean, Thailand and Polynesia where he managed several, Vincent spent 9 years in French Polynesia and more particularly in the Tuamotu Archipelago. In addition to his activity as a diving instructor, Vincent, passionate about animal watching, develops his work as an underwater photographer. Since 2012, he has devoted most of his time to this passion. He is a PADI international diving instructor.

Un plongeur photographie les requins à Fakarava
© Sylvain Girardot

Currently, if you want to meet them, it’s in French Polynesia that you will have to go or, more simply, every year at the Paris dive show.

Birth of Mokarran

After working for so many years as a diving instructor, Mélo and Vincent want something new remaining close to this environment. As Vincent is a photographer, they have the idea to link their different passions.

That’s how Mokarran was born

The idea was to create a range of t-shirts that would put the animals in front. Their first models were intended for Polynesians and divers who wanted to have quality t-shirts while finding the name of the island they lived in or had visited. A reminder of the nature when we call our clothing line Mokarran recalling the great hammerhead shark (Sphyrna mokarran)

From the end of 2016, Mélo and Vincent decided to open up to the rest of the world thanks to their online store and the distribution of their creations in a selection of multi-brand stores such as “Au Vieux Campeur”, “La Palanquée” and also diving clubs that you can find on their website. In the course of 2017, the product ranges are developing and, at the same time, Mokarran is becoming known to divers thanks to social networks and the Paris Dive show.

But Melo and Vincent don’t stay quite and work a lot every day to develop their range.

One of the strengths of their Mokarran business is perhaps their symbiosis.

Mélo and Vincent live and work as a couple. For them, there are only advantages to this:

“You have to know how to use the qualities of each, work together, do everything together while keeping their areas of expertise. Each one has a look at what the other is doing without being a constraint, it is compartmentalized and very open at the same time. In fact all this is done very naturally “Not bad as a philosophy, isnt’it?

The Mokarran project requested a minimum of financial investment to start, it is also time consuming as Mélo and Vincent  create everything from A to Z (website, design,…)

Une femme pose en vêtement Mokarran
© Vincent Truchet

Diving…

If they see themselves living well in the future on their sailboat (“with a compressor”, says Vincent), they will keep diving for ever….

The spots that they love near their home will make you want to go there: Fakarava, Toau, Apataki, the Marquesas, Rangiroa and Tikehau which, although perhaps less spectacular than its neighbors Fakarava and Rangiroa, with its ease of access and the quality of its dives make it a great compromise … in addition to being Vincent’s prefered atoll.

And, although they have been able to dive fabulous spots (Galapagos, Raja Ampat, …), it’s in French Polynesia that they have their most beautiful diving memories:

Melo “My most beautiful dive on September 16, 2016 in the south pass of Fakarava where we had the chance to meet 2 whales in the middle of the shark wall !!! Unforgettable ”

Vincent: “For my most beautiful dives (difficult to choose one) I would say, 2014, Fakarava south during the night in the middle of shark hunts. 2012, a crazy dive in Tikehau with 4 great hammerhead sharks (sphyrna mokarran), a tiger, limbatus, albimarginatus in shambles and dozens of other gray, obesus, black tips, on a dive of two hours. 2013, when I saw a young manta ray being chased by a huge hammer, unique moment (we want to believe it 🤗). 2016 not a dive but 6 months of diving during which a gigantic school of horse mackerel squatted all the Tikehau pass, it was crasy, their presence brought so many predators, it teemed with life, predation scenes, it was Star Wars under the sea! ”

… and again diving

Mélo and Vincent are just like what we can imagine,  true diving enthusiasts.

Never jaded, they would like to go on a sailboat that would allow them to explore some of the less frequented areas and spend a lot of time there because a spot, according to them (and I agree 😁) can not be discovered in some dives but in several years. Navigating the oceans and diving into inaccessible places and untouched by human footprints is what they would like to do. Vincent adds that there are a lot of observations he would like to make and photograph life scenes never documented. Of course, for that … it takes time and knowledge.

Vincent prend une photo d'un phoque sur une plage
© Vincent Truchet

And in the future?

When they imagine the world of diving in the future, Melo and Vincent are not always optimistic.

For Melo it is the ecology part that seems alarming. She thinks that, unfortunately, man is killing our oceans, the ecosystems are getting poorer and the species are becoming scarce … The overexploitation of water, seas, soil, air, and all the natural resources from which we can profit without worrying – or too little – of the catastrophic damage that it entails do not leave her open to good omens …

Vincent points out a fact that interest me particularly because it’s about the diving trainings. If he is aware that diving has become democratized,since at least two decades, he finds that there are more and more divers who are less and less experienced, so the laws are more and more restrictive and this will not stop.

On the other hand, Vincent also highlights deep changes in ecosystems, not in the good way unfortunately, so over time he feels that we will have less and less freedom to limit the human impact on species.

“Our world is incredible, we pollute the oceans with chemicals, plastics, hydrocarbons and all the destructive tricks that man has been able to imagine, emptying the oceans of its inhabitants everywhere on earth and on a large scale and as a “window dressing” we made some timid laws to protect the environment. It’s like setting a forest on fire and thinking of putting it out with a bucket of water.

Vincent fears that the divers of the end of the XXI century will not have much living thing to observe behind their masks.

Beside this, and in the short term, Mélo and Vincent focus on the development of Mokarran obviously but also on the organization of photo safari cruises  in Polynesia. Cruises which, to be honest, I would love to participate.

At the same time, Vincent continues his work as a photographer. He will be present as an exhibitor at the 22nd animal photography festival in Montier en Der. If you are in the area, do not hesitate to go and say hello, his work is just great (you can find it on his site)

Un apnéiste rejoint une baleine
© Vincent Truchet

Like other creatives, Mélo and Vincent like to diversify their activities and he whispers that a nice project will arrive for them soon but I will not tell you more (because I tried to get details without success, I do not know any more than you 😁)

However, you will have no trouble getting the information in a timely manner or discovering their beautiful Mokarran project by logging into their Facebook, Instagram, or Pinterest account.

So who says there is no way to follow your dreams by working in the scuba diving industry today?

What is the project YOU dream of ?

And most importantly, do not forget to be happy 🤗

Helene

This article is totally independent of Mokarran society. I received no compensation in exchange for writing (although Melo really insists on giving me a t-shirt at the next Paris diving show). I write for pleasure to highlight people who inspire me in the world of diving. Do not hesitate to contact me if you also have positive projects to put forward.

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