If you an avid scuba diver, and would like to share the serene vibrant underwater world with your pals, this article will show you what you need. The underwater world is a mesmerizing environment full of the wonders of Mother Nature that engages your senses like a kid in the candy store. One of the best ways to capture those exhilarating moments is to engage in creative underwater photography. You have to take several factors into consideration. We will look at how you can prepare yourself, the kind of challenges you will encounter and the kind of photography equipment involved so that you can truly enjoy the activity.
Foremost, you have to be a rather competent scuba diver. You are immersed in a hostile and potentially fatal environment, safety comes first. Thus it’s important to understand your immediate surroundings before attempting to take a picture. Not only that, your ability to maintain neutral buoyancy and knowing the condition of the current will make your endeavor easier.
According to standard diving etiquette, you are required to dive with a buddy. Your buddy can be of great assistance to carry some gear, watch your back and even be your model. However, communication underwater can be challenging so always work with an experienced buddy you have a good rapport with.
Understanding the water conditions
You have to consider the lighting conditions and it may be affected by depth or visibility, just like trying to snap a subject in a dimly-lit room. What adds to the challenge is the presence of particles between your camera lens and your subject. Thus most of your snapshots usually look better in close-ups.
Your gear of choice
If you are starting out at underwater photography, we would advise getting your feet wet with a waterproof disposable camera, or a compact amphibious digital camera. They are lightweight, easy to bring along and relatively affordable. Getting accustomed to this excitingly strange environment needs some time and plenty of trial and error. And when you feel you would like to take the activity to the next level, you can invest in a good conventional camera with a waterproof housing. One of our favorite is to use a digital Single-Lens Reflex (SLR) camera; and choose the smallest housing that fits your camera but with the most controls.
Taking photograph is all about lighting, how it interacts with our subject and the way we perceive it. To get the best lighting possible underwater, you will also need an external flashgun. This will help in providing sufficient illumination to bring out the often vibrant colors of your subjects.
Useful equipment you might need
Additional accessories include battery pack and interchangeable lenses. You will be hitting yourself if you run out of battery half way through. So a battery pack, familiarity with your equipment and proper planning will ensure a successful photography expedition. As you get more experienced, you may even invest in a few quality macro and close-up lenses or filters.
Taking photographs underwater is a totally different ball game except you use similar equipment and pressing a button to snap. Thus in order to enjoy scuba diving as a sport and capturing those moments on camera, being safe is the most important. You have to take on experience as a diver, be aware of the risks and know how you can minimize them. The challenges in underwater photography include visibility, lighting conditions and getting a clear shot at your subject. Although there are many guide books, it is your personal process of trial and error that will give you the experience to take great pictures. So start with the easy point-and-shoot cameras before investing on the expensive gear. It will save you on the long run when you are more experienced and know what type of gear will work better for you.
Underwater photography isn’t that difficult to start but will take time and experience to master. It’s getting more popular as more divers are bringing cameras on their trips. And being able to show and share the wonders of the underwater world with friends and family is such a joy. So grab those cameras and start snapping!