Underwater Digital Photography
Underwater Digital Photography is getting more affordable by the Day!
Underwater photography used to be an extremely expensive hobby, and one that required exceptional equipment to get reasonable results. With technological developments in equipment over the past decade, underwater digital photography has become far more accessible to far more people. While there is no doubt that it offers its own special challenges, underwater digital photography will enable you to capture amazing images in the right environment. If you are new to underwater digital photography, choose your environment carefully. Here are some tips.
Like all other types of photography, you need something specific to photograph. If you are in tropical waters, fish make the perfect subject matter, as does coral and other sea life. Underwater shipwrecks are also fascinating to photograph, provided you have enough light and the water isn't murky.
But generally it's best to stay shallow. Remember that water absorbs the light and the deeper underwater you go, the more colour you will lose. First you will lose the reds, then the oranges, yellows and last of all the greens and blues, as the colour fades along the spectrum. So in deep water, your images will look quite blue.
Start out by photographing in water you can stand upright in. You'll be amazed what you can find in rock pools. Once you are underwater, paddling to stay afloat, it can be very difficult to hold the camera steady. So experiment the easy way first, and then go deeper, one step at a time.
Also remember that if you are far away from whatever it is you are photographing underwater, the image will also tend to look blue. So get as close to your subject as possible. Of course your camera settings will also affect the amount of light that enters your camera, but trying to stay focused underwater and fiddle with settings can be quite a tricky business. Some cameras have an underwater mode that you can preset before you dive. This setting will also compensate, to a certain degree, for the blue-green colour, by adding a bit of red to the image to make it appear more "natural". Pre-focus is another sensible option, meaning that you set your camera before you dive instead of trying to focus it manually under the water.
A trick that experienced photographers often use is to shoot up towards the light. You can achieve some amazing effects this way.
Never forget that practise makes perfect and that you can learn a lot by experimenting with underwater digital photography.