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Top Ten Underwater Photography Tips

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Top 10 Tips for Underwater Photography


If you would like to improve your underwater photography skills then check out our Top 10 Tips below.

Stay Shallow

The first few metres are often the best for marine life and also the most colourful as light penetration is at its maximum.

Buoyancy Control

Correct weighting and buoyancy are vitally important - not just to get you close to your subject but to prevent any damage to precious reef systems or other marine organisms.

Get Close

The least amount of dense water between your camera lens and subject the better, so get close - then closer still for best results.

Know Your Equipment

Be aware of the limitations of your camera set-up. If visibility is poor then shooting macro, or close-up is recommended and save your wide-angle photography for when better conditions prevail.

Do Your Research

If you're looking to photograph a particular species make sure you check out not only the best location but also the best time of year.


Eliminate Backscatter

Backscatter is caused by tiny particles of detrius illuminated between camera and strobe and can ruin your shot. Angling your strobe to light the subject from the side, top or below can prevent this phenomenon and improve your results no end.


Time of Day

Midday, when the sun is highest in the sky gives a strong, even light and elininates harsh shadows.


Be Patient

Chasing after marine life only causes stress to both subject and photographer. Keep your distance, observe and then move in slowly before taking your shot.


Shoot Upwards

Images shot looking downwards can appear flat and uninteresting. Shooting upwards with your subject in the foreground against a blue or green water column gives a pleasing and dynamic three dimensional effect.


Take Only Pictures, Leave Only Bubbles

This is the mantra of underwater photographers and the least impact on our marine environment is all the better for future generations of underwater photographers.