ryansnodgrass
ryansnodgrass

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Doing a bit of diving in Guadalupe Mexico with Shark Diver. They can be pretty "passive" so I was excited to get one who rolled its eyes back as it we...
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Doing a bit of diving in Guadalupe Mexico with Shark Diver. They can be pretty "passive" so I was excited to get one who rolled its eyes back as it went in for a nibble. Nothing like getting up close and personal! If I had to do it over I'd use a 20mm lens or less because it can be very difficult to get 3' away!
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DNproSTUDIO
 
DNproSTUDIO May 22
the great white shark shot

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Behind The Lens

Location
Taken mid September off the shore of Guadalupe Island, Mexico in 300' of water.
Time
Was take about 10am in the morning from about 10' away.
Lighting
The lighting on a trip like this can be really tricky. Because of the cages and how the animals often respond to strobes I couldn't use them and this takes out all the consistency between shots and changing lighting. IE the lighting on a clear day changes dramatically underwater over the course of 6hs dive time. Major considerations were mid morning is dark but we benefited from the shadow of the boat. Mid day was important not to leave the morning settings on and my afternoon you had great lighting but no longer benefited from the boats shadow.
Equipment
I use a lightly modified Sony a65 with a Sigma 10-20mm constant 3.5 aperture rectilinear where I cut the shade ring off the end to make it fit the housing. The constant aperture is a big benefit to me underwater since lighting is often questionable. This also allows for shots without strobes others can't get. The length of the port covering the lens is critical to having a shot be in focus. Since my set up isn't "standard" I had to mix and match extensions to get the desired length.
Inspiration
I have a passion for adventure and want to see what most never imagine seeing. To be here in person was inspiring to me and hopefully to others at their power. I also wanted to capture a moment of action since much of a Great White's time is casually strolling around.
Editing
I did some minor post work to correct the color... It's rare in an underwater shot not to if shooting raw. This is just doing some color balance to bring out the reds you see in real life. I also increased the black, and contrast slightly to give the photo more depth.
In my camera bag
In the bag, moisture absorbing packs, 10-20 lens, Ikelite housing, lots of extra batteries and memory cards so I can change after each dive, protective cover for the dome, Ikelite strobe, arms, counter floats, and charger.
Feedback
There are several things I would say... 1st shoot raw if possible, you can't trust the camera to adjust properly most times. Don't think you need a pair of $800 strobes! You can often get a great shot down to 50-60' if you spent more on a good lens. The length of port used is absolutely critical, if this isn't right every shot will be blurry. Simply make sure the radius of your dome is the same distance away from the nodal point of the lens... or in the middle of a zoom lens. Double check all your O rings, flooded cameras don't seem to work well. The shots are typically made by adjusting your aperture more then any other setting. However, since most shots are extremely close (3 feet or less) you have to be aware a small aperture can be especially small.

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