Aquarium Photography

  1. Your Guide to Aquarium Photography #3 - Settings for Fish, Coral, and FTS Photos

    In our previous article in this Your Guide to Aquarium Photography series, we looked at how you should prepare for a photoshoot of your reef. In this third installment, we will be focusing our attention on camera settings/parameters and how to get them right for fish, coral, and FTS photos.
  2. What's in a Photo? A Dive Into Coral Photography in Advertising

    I was recently asked a question by a customer about taking a photo under different lighting than what I had used on my site. They wanted to see a heavy blue/actinic picture. Long story short, it got me to thinking about the various techniques used in coral advertising today. Every seller is different, and no one way is right or wrong. For some it's about getting the coral to look close to what the naked eye sees. For others it's about the presentation. And sometimes it's all about the...
  3. A picture speaks a thousand words…

    Since opening our business and launching our website, the number one area we have received comments and questions on has been our photography. All of the comments have been positive and most of the questions are in the “how do you do it” category. Among the many principals our company was founded on is complete transparency of what we do and how we do it. To us the most important aspect of our business is meeting or whenever possible exceeding customer expectations. If our customers know...
  4. Your Guide to Aquarium Photography #2 - Preparing for a Photoshoot

    In our previous article in this Your Guide to Aquarium Photography series, we examined some photography basics. In this article, we'll look specifically at how you should prepare for a photoshoot of your reef. Preparing for a photo shoot a couple of days in advance can make a difference in the quality of the pictures and the amount of post-processing needed.
  5. Your Guide to Aquarium Photography #1 - Getting the Basics

    Tank photography has been and continues to be a challenging topic for many reefers. When I started my tank, I was using an SLR (a non-digital for the newer generation); yes, we used to shoot using film and wait for days to finish the roll and get it developed. I remember taking notes on how each shot was taken (no Exif info was available then) and then keeping the notes to compare with the pictures when the film was processed. I was able to raise my ratio of good shots from 2/36 to 25-30/36...
  6. Using Lightroom to Develop Aquarium Images

    What I'm about to show you is pretty basic and should be similar across all software packages. We are basically just importing the image and then making adjustments to basic things like contrast, saturation, sharpening, etc. Instead of writing it all out and trying to illustrate the process with photos, I figured it would be easier to understand if watching a video. So sit back and enjoy this little off-the-cuff tutorial that shows my typical steps for processing images of my tank. Hopefully...
  7. !!!TOTAL PHOTOGRAPHIC TRANSPARANCY!!!

    Here’s a delightful new acro of mine that I got chance to shoot last night. And rather than just showcase a close up or two, and do one of my near kitschy now write ups, I thought I’d share exactly how the photo was processed in Lightroom. Admittedly, I am no pro, and have only learned as I’ve gone. But with a little basic know how, and minimal knowledge of lightroom, you can produce acceptably accurate coral pics.
  8. D2Mini's Photo Tip #2 - "What Camera Should I Get?"

    Shiny, expensive new toys are always fun. But as an Every Day Reefer, we know that much of your disposable income is going towards that beautiful aquarium. Photography is another disposable income black hole and if you are not careful, you run the risk of getting sucked right in. I'm a professional photographer myself so the last thing I want to do is discourage you from diving in head first and discovering all the joys of photography and the toys that come with it, but I'm going to restrain...
  9. D2Mini's Photo Tip #1 - Why RAW is Awesome.

    I get a lot of questions from the reef community about my photography. People always want to know what settings I use and what equipment I own. I can answer that very easily, but it's not really going to help anyone. Settings are changing constantly depending on what I'm shooting, and any dslr and macro lens will work just fine. What I try to tell people but it usually doesn't sink in, is if you already have the basics of photography down, shooting in RAW and learning how to process your own...
  10. Photo-Chop: What You See Is Not What You Get

    Have you ever shopped online and purchased a coral that looked extremely bright and full of color only to receive a dulled down version? It has you question whether your tank husbandry is out of whack and makes you second guess your light choice. The truth is that you probably do have the exact coral from the photograph. The lights they use are probably equivalent or less than yours. After all, most businesses try to save money. They also find ways to make money. One of the most...
  11. Depth of Field???? DOF

    Depth of FIELD (or Focus)!!!! Most simply stated depth of field is term used to describe how much or how little of your picture is in focus. There are several factors that determine the depth of field, but none is more profound then the aperture used to capture the image. A large aperture will result in LESS depth of field then a small one will. There are other factors as well, focal length, and the distance from the camera to the subject, but neither of these are as dramatic as...
  12. What extension tubes do.

    Okay, this is my first photo how to thread in a while, so please bear with me. Extension tubes are available in a variety of sizes for SLR cameras, there are 3rd party brands and there are ones made by the OEM, but they all have the same purpose, to reduce the minimum focus distance of a given lens. All of my examples are taken with the same camera, the same lens, and the same aperture, so that depth of field was not affected in that way. The camera is a 1D from Canon, the lens is a...
  13. Junior's Aquatic Photography How-To (The Basics)

    Over the last year I have become overwhelmed with the amount photographic opportunities that this hobby provides. I have upgraded my hardware 3 times, and spent far too much money than I care to talk about. A lot of this spending was not necessary, and could have been avoided with a little know how, and a bit more experience. I hope this How-to can help my fellow reefers better understand the ins and outs of photographing their aquariums and its inhabitants...
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