One Diver’s Perspective.

Scuba, Photography and Scandal

The Quest for Better Pictures


Before my last dive trip,  I spent $400 on an external flash to attach to my Sony camera, in the hopes that it would take much better pictures. Unfortunately, the camera overexposed everything.  I thought perhaps the flash was defective, so I sent it back to the manufacturer, and they confirmed that a circuit board had gone bad, and sent it back repaired (have not tested it yet).  So, again, I am hoping that I will be able to take much better pictures with the external flash.

For those who do not dive, or do not deal with underwater photography, being underwater removes the ‘red’ spectrum of visible light, which essentially makes pictures appear “bluish.” The way to solve that problem is to take pictures in shallower water (so the red is not filtered out as much) or to add your own artificial light while shooting close to the subject. Another method is to add a “red” filter to the lens, which works quite well in some circumstances.  In any event, the flashes are expensive and I was gravely disappointed that I ruined so many photos trying to get the expensive flash to work.

On the other hand, I am glad it turned out to be broken and not that I was simply too inept to use it properly.

For two weeks, I have been embarking on buying an entire new setup, camera housing and flash.  That is going to cost me thousands of dollars. My trusty sony will still be used for taking video and as a backup camera, but I have decided (without purchasing anything just yet) that it is time to shoot with an SLR camera.  The benefits of such a camera are the virtual elimination of shutter lag, so that the fish won’t be gone by the time the camera decides to snap the picture, and also, the potential for better picture quality overall.  The drawbacks, are that such cameras are very expensive, and very expensive to house because they are much larger than point and shoot cameras.  The “largeness” is also a drawback because you wind up with a camera system something that is difficult to pack and transport easily.

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April 28, 2008 - Posted by | scuba | ,

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