Monday, October 25, 2010

Underwater Photography: A Guide for Beginners

Author: Russ Babka

Job Vacancy, Indonesia Job, Job Indonesia

In case you are planning to go diving in your beach vacation, learning the basics of underwater photography may be quite helpful. You can capture the images of the rich marine life, comprising exotic fishes, sharks, turtles, coral reefs and other aquatic creatures, during your snorkeling or scuba diving expedition. Underwater photography is quite popular among scuba divers.
Here are some tips for underwater photography:
  1. Choose the background wisely; it is best to capture a foreground subject in a good static background.
  2. Click pictures in the portrait position.
  3. Click your subject from a close distance, within 12 inches. The color, contrast and sharpness of your picture are reduced by the presence of water.
  4. Ensure that you put your camera flash in the forced flash mode.
  5. For better results, click at an upward angle and try to fill the frame with the subject.
  6. It is preferable to focus on the subject's eyes.
  7. To reduce backscatter, use an external strobe/flash.
  8. Use auto white-balance while using flash/strobe.
  9. Set your camera to the lowest ISO and the highest resolution.
  10. To shoot with natural light, you must capture images within 20ft or less depth.
  11. Learn to balance between flash light and natural light.
Besides, you can use the spot focus mode to get the quickest focus. To increase the sharpness of the photographs, check the shutter speed. The optimum shutter speed for still objects is 1/30th, for slow moving objects it is 1/60th and 1/25th for fast moving subjects.
Underwater Photography: Things to Know
Here are some rules for great underwater photography:
Rule of Thirds
According to the rule of thirds, if a photograph is divided in 'thirds' by lines, the main elements of the composition should be positioned near the intersection of lines. Following the rule of thirds gives the photograph a sense of balance. However, the rule is hardly followed while taking extreme close up shots. Using this rule helps you achieve balance; however, it is important to follow your intuition.
Wide Angle Composition
Try to get a strong background and foreground. Shoot the foreground subject from a distance of 2ft. Use the widest possible lens and the best use of light. Choose a suitable background, such as a school of fish, kelp forest, wreck or colorful reef.
Macro Composition
Try to shoot low; choose a colored, camouflaged or black background. Avoid any distracting background that may ruin the image. Keep the foreground sharp. Maintain a proper separation between the background and foreground. Use a black or blue background to isolate your subject.

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