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The Challenges of California Underwater Photography: A Guide to Local Shooting Success

Here’s a quick photo fact: it is technically easier to shoot compelling underwater photos in the bright sunlight and clear water of the tropics. Compared to the tropics, shooting in California means shooting in generally dark water that has less visibility and more suspended particulate matter. But just because California water is less forgiving is not to say creating pleasing images can’t be done. Any underwater photographer who pays close attention to their shooting scenario and technique can enjoy success in our waters. That’s another […]

The Cold, Dirty, Truth: How to Get Good Photos in California Waters

Talk with underwater photographers about shooting in California and it probably won’t take long before you hear some comments about how much more challenging it is to produce compelling photographs in our home waters than it is in clear tropical water. I don’t disagree. But I will say that with some forethought, practice and good shooting techniques it is possible to create strong macro and wide-angle images in California waters much of the time. It’s simply a matter of employing the best shooting techniques to […]

Effective Underwater Modeling

You can be a good dive buddy in many ways, but there is nothing more precise than being the buddy of a photographer. It is essential that you plan your dive and know exactly your objective. Photographers are tricky beings and you need to stay out of their way when you need to, and help them create incredible photographs when they need you. Before we discuss anything, I want to remind you about buoyancy. Obviously, as a diver you will better enjoy any underwater activity […]

The Underwater Photographer’s Mantra

Photography articles commonly focus on the technical side of photography–cameras, lenses, lighting, etc. While it is necessary to understand at some level how your camera works, I’ve have always believed that an understanding of composition, animal behavior, and how the photographer’s behavior influences the creation of an image are more important to understand. This is especially true when that once-in-a-lifetime photo opportunity swims by, since it is natural to lose your concentration in the excitement of the moment. To maintain your focus, all you have […]

Improve Your Photography: Get Better Macro Images

Macro photography is generally considered to be a bit more approachable than wide-angle photography by underwater photographers. The lenses and strobes are smaller and less expensive compared to what is needed for wide-angle photography, and macro subjects are easier to find and compose. Importantly, most macro subjects cannot swim away and allow divers plenty of time to practice to get the image they want. With a modest investment most photographers can acquire great images from their very first dive. The first thing to remember in […]

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