Rent a Camera
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With the advent of small digital cameras with underwater housings, underwater photography has become more accessible than ever. Taking photos underwater can be as much fun as diving itself. Taking a picture of a big pelagic like a whale shark is easy just as long as you are lucky enough to be in the right place at the right time because you can’t miss it. But what about photographing an Ornate Ghost Pipe Fish? Taking a shot like that, takes a bit more skill. Once you start diving with an underwater camera each dive takes on a new character as you start to explore and pay more attention to the detail around you. If you are a qualified diver why not rent one of our digital cameras for the day and try it for yourself.
If you’ve never taken pictures underwater before, here are a few pointers to get you started:
- Before you go diving practise with the camera inside the housing so you are familiar with how to operate it. Test shoot objects close up.
- To begin with set the camera to the highest resolution, and the lowest ISO.
- Make sure your camera flash is turned on, preferably in “forced flash mode”.
- Get close to your subject – preferably within 50cm. Water reduces color, contrast, and sharpness.
- For best composition – get low, shoot at an upwards angle, don’t center the subject and try to fill your frame with the subject. Don’t shoot down at the subject.
- Use auto white-balance when using a flash, and custom white balance or underwater mode when not using a flash
- Learn how to use manual mode or aperture priority mode if your camera offers it, so you control the balance between the natural light and the light from your flash
- If you are shooting with natural light, shoot in 8m of water or less, with the sun behind you
- For quickest focus, use spot focus mode. Learn how to focus on an area without taking a photo (pressing the shutter button halfway) and recomposing.
- If your underwater photos don’t look sharp, check to see which shutter speed was used, for still objects it should be no slower than 1/30th of a second, 1/60th for slow moving objects, and 1/125th for faster moving fish.
There are a few tricks to taking good photographs underwater so why not find out more by taking our underwater digital photography speciality course? After taking the course receive a 50% discount on camera rentals for the rest of your stay.