Top 10 Tips for Shooting Underwater Photos

Underwater Digital Photography

Shooting underwater photos can be a lot of fun, and you may find that you are addicted to underwater photography. Many people love to take pictures underwater, but find that their pictures don’t come out as clearly or as high quality as they would like.

Problems Encountered with Underwater Digital Photography

Many photographers that begin shooting pictures underwater experience the same types of problems such as:

  1. Their photos are usually covered by white circles or dots that resemble snow
  2. The photos lack clarity and are usually blurry
  3. The photos will lack sharpness and contrast between the subject and background
  4. The photos are devoid of color and the color of the pictures are mostly bluish green

However, with a few tips, the photographer will be able to quickly correct these fundamental challenges.  Once the mistakes have been corrected only practice and experimentation will improve the photography skills.

Here are ten tips that will help you take excellent underwater photos:

Tip #1 – Practice at Home

It is vital that you get good at taking photos underwater, and you can practice taking underwater photos at home. Get in your pool or even in your bathtub, and start snapping away. Practice hones your skills and helps you get accustomed to underwater photography.

Tip #2 – Get a Good Camera

Using a good camera is a vital part of taking quality pictures, and you should look around the find the best GoPro or underwater cameras. There are many brands that make underwater cameras, and you should always do your research to ensure that you purchase the best underwater camera you can afford.

Tip #3 – Get the Right Gear

Holding your breath may actually lead to poor quality photos, so you should try to find scuba or snorkeling gear that will allow you to keep your head underwater while taking photos. Using a mask is the best way to ensure that you have top visibility, and even a snorkel is better than nothing when it comes to taking underwater photos.

Tip #4 – Lighting is Vital

When it comes to taking well underwater photos, it is vital that you have the proper lighting. One of the reasons to practice at home is to practice capturing images using good lighting, and you will find that good background lighting actually helps to enhance the quality of the image. Try to shoot from an angle that is under the object in order to capture the sunlight hitting the water. Lighting is the best way to take a picture from a simple photo to a work of art.

Tip #5 – Learn Your Settings

Using a camera may seem easy, but really using all of the features on your camera actually takes a while to get used to. Learn how to handle all of the settings on your camera, and study what each one can do. Once you can learn all of the settings on your camera, you can begin to use them all to take excellent quality underwater photos.

Tip #6 – Safety is Important

Be very careful when snapping underwater photos, and always make sure that you take the necessary precautions to ensure your safety. If you don’t know how to use snorkeling or scuba gear, spend time learning how to use them properly. Be careful if you are using a weight belt to keep you underwater, and always be sure that you can quickly ditch the weights if you need to resurface. Don’t ask your underwater models to do anything dangerous, and have someone nearby who can help you if something goes wrong.

Tip #7 – Use the Built-In Modes on Your Camera

Your camera has a number of modes that are built into the camera, and these modes can be used to take quality pictures without the need for a lot of adjusting. While you do want to learn the different settings of your camera, often the built-in modes of your digital camera are sufficient to take quality underwater photos.

Tip #8 – Get Close to Your Subject

While the zoom feature on a camera makes it easy to take shots from far away, the only way that you will ever get high-quality images is by getting as close as possible. The zoom simply is unable to capture the best underwater photos, so you should try to get as close to the object as possible to ensure that your image is crisp and clear.

Tip #9 – Have Patience

Underwater photography requires a good deal of patience, especially if you are shooting marine life. It takes a long time to get that perfect photo, and you should be patient when trying to capture underwater photos. You will find that snapping the perfect underwater photo is well worth the wait.

Tip #10 – Use Your Flash

When you are shooting underwater photos in deeper water, you will find that the sun’s rays don’t penetrate as deeply as you would like. In order to get clear, well illuminated underwater photos, use your flash to help you light the areas that you are trying capture.

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