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An expert’s guide to taking the best shots underwater

Photographer Ajit SN on the joy, and the necessary skills, of shooting the marine world

HT48HRS_Special Updated: Jun 13, 2016 11:46 IST
Soma Das
A Silky shark
A Silky shark(Ajit SN)

Photographer Ajit SN gives tips on how to get the best shots underwater

To shoot underwater, learn how to shoot in ambient/low light (light conditions change quickly underwater); recognise the position of the sun (to avail of natural light while shooting);and understand the colours at different depths (water absorbs colours; after a certain depth you cannot see certain colours like red, orange, blue and green and have to use flash lights).

Manta ray (Ajit SN)

The basic gear comprises an SLR camera with underwater housing (a casing for the camera), strobes (flashes), wide angle and macro lenses. A combination of wide angle, fish-eye and macro lens allows you to capture a variety of marine life.

A Humpback whale (Ajit SN)

GoPros are good for video footage and can be taken to 70m depth.

Lion fish (with stripes) (Ajit SN)

Assemble the underwater camera set-up (underwater housing and rigs) in a well-lit area a day prior to the dive. Inspect the housing carefully before and after closing to make sure nothing gets caught in the groove.

A school of Jack fish (Ajit SN)

After preparing the camera, do a test shot with the strobes to ascertain they fire properly.

Hawksbill turtle (Ajit SN)

Secure the underwater housing to the rig. Ensure that the glass dome port on the housing is at least a metre away as it might crack if in contact with sharp edges.

Mandarin fish (Ajit SN)

Master diving skills like buoyancy and breathing techniques.