Photography?

Genavelle

Member
Does anyone here like/do photography? I really enjoy it as a hobby, and since I've started my fishtank, I've started trying to practice some photography with that.

It's quite a challenge though, as you're shooting through glass and water and trying to capture things that don't really stop moving. Anyone else trying this out or have any advice?


I find that I'm always having to change my settings around. Today, my photos were coming out a little dark, but obviously I can't slow down the shutter speed too much when my fish is swimming around. I tried to bump up my exposure-compensation, and lower my ISO a little bit but MEH. I'm still trying to figure out the best way to set it up. I also was playing with my +10 macro filter over my lens, which makes it a lot harder to get the shots, but I really like the ones I manage to get.
 
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Coradee

Moderator
Member
Thunder_o_b is the person to ask about photography, his pictures are fabulous
 

BDpups

Member
Clean glass, a small tank just for photographing the fish , and two flashes on top of the tank helps a lot. Plan on deleting a lot of pics..
 

Jsigmo

Member
And don't expect great sharpness when shooting through aquarium glass, especially at an angle.

I find that the closer the focal plane is to being parallel to the glass, the sharper the s are. However, that presents problems with reflection control. So often, it is a tradeoff.

Careful placement of the light sources can help. Set them at angles to avoid reflections that the camera can see. Setting them to aI'm down into the aquarium from above, as BDpups recommended, is great when possible.

Having the room dark so things in the room are less likely to show up in reflections helps.

I do like flash, because it helps you control reflections, freeze movement, and use smaller apertures to get better depth of field. Of course higher ISO settings also help if the noise doesn't get out of hand.

Off camera flash is an advantage, for sure.

And, as BDpups said, just expect a low "keeper rate".
 

BDpups

Member
Having a slave flash pointed up is helpful. I have also found that if you cover the flashes with a styro box that it distributes the light more evenly. Egg crate works well for the top of the tank to set flashes and boxes on.

Play around with the flash setting and the height of the box to see what you like.

Shoot in Raw. ISO 100. Shutter speed 1/200
Just something to start with. This can and should all be changed to suit what you like.

A tripod is useful too, but not a necessity.

A few more tips off the top of my head. I have a Canon 450D, Nissin Speelite master flash, and a Britek slave flash.

Mess around with everything. There is not an exact science to it.
 
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Lucy

Moderator
Member
Slug might have some pointers as well
 
  • Thread Starter

Genavelle

Member
Good tips! I'm kind of inexperienced with flash, because I generally like to use natural lighting/the lighting of the scene as I see it. Then again, I'm not used to shooting fish lol. I've gotten some photos I'm really happy with so far without the flash, but I can try to see how that changes things too.

Also since this is in the "Other Interests" Forum, feel free to discuss photography outside of the tank too lol!
 

Jsigmo

Member
Lucy said:
@ might have some pointers as well
Is that the same Slug who owns the photo hosting site "Pbase"? I've got an account there, and they always hosted (for free) the s for a bi-weekly on-line photo contest a bunch of us had on one of the large photography forums.

 

Thunder_o_b

Member
You have been given some very good advice so far.

Getting ready for work so I will come back to this this weekend (have to change out the rack and pinion in the minI van first)

Give the fish a good feeding of their favorite treat. I use blood worms. Then wait 10-15 min so the filter can clean all the bits of food from the water. The fish will be fat, happy, in their best color (outside of breeding) and slower.
 

Jsigmo

Member
Lucy said:
That's an great writeup! Lots of great advice in there, and fun to read.

Thunder_o_b said:
You have been given some very good advice so far.

Getting ready for work so I will come back to this this weekend (have to change out the rack and pinion in the minI van first)

Give the fish a good feeding of their favorite treat. I use blood worms. Then wait 10-15 min so the filter can clean all the bits of food from the water. The fish will be fat, happy, in their best color (outside of breeding) and slower.
That's an excellent suggestion.

I hadn't thought of that. But I've used a similar trick when photographing some interesting arachnids that are very fast, and never seem to hold still. By feeding them one of their favorite treats (a moth is usually what I can catch and offer them), they'll stop and completely ignore the fact that my camera lens is almost touching them as they chow down! That has allowed me to get pictures of them that I could have never gotten otherwise.

I don't see why it wouldn't work great to feed fish or almost anything to get them to settle down somewhat! I can imagine the fish would be less active right after having a good meal. I know that I sure am!

Here's one of a Solfugid chowing down on a shield bug:

 

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