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Member Since 23 Jul 2010
Offline Last Active Today, 03:49 PM

Topics I've Started

Anemonefish eggs - help me do this better

Yesterday, 03:38 PM

How does one take a photo of these amazing little eggs that is anything other than an ID shot?  They look fantastic in my opinion, but I just can't seem to find a composition that makes for an interesting photo.  Here are three examples from last weekend.  


In the first shot, I like the out of focus eggs in the background which give some depth and a sense of their multitude, whereas in the second shot I tried to isolate the eggs against darker negative space.  Both are nice, and very interesting to me, but for anyone who doesn't know what they are looking at they don't seem to be strong images.  In the third shot I tried to establish the context by showing the anemonefish as she was fanning the eggs, but the scale is so different and depth of field inadequate to capture both that I don't think it makes a good photo at all


So how do other people go about this subject?








What did I find - conch / cowrie eggs?

02 October 2016 - 09:17 PM

Diving this past weekend at Anilao, it must have been the right moon phase, as we came across three interesting examples of of reproduction (I think).


The first was on a vertical section of reef at about 12 m.  There was a group of six conch shells (I've only ever seen one at a time) that I think were trapezius or horse conch. It was hard to be sure as they were so encrusted and since I had a macro lens mounted and the vis was not great I could not take a usable shot of one of them or of the group. Under a small overhang was a cluster of what might be egg cases.  Can anyone confirm?








Continuing the theme, shortly thereafter we came upon a pair of egg cowries, this time a bit shallower at about 6 m.  I think they were also depositing eggs:




Then finally, I came across this transparent shrimp obviously bearing eggs, which I post just to round out the theme:




Expert opinions on the two shells and links to learn more would be much appreciated.



two porcelain crabs - great color but something lacking?

17 August 2016 - 06:25 PM

I found these two porcelain crabs on a night dive a couple of weeks ago.  I love the colors, but the flat lighting leaves me feeling a little blah. They were tucked well into their soft coral hosts so the strobe light is very diffuse.  I have done very little editing of either shot, just tweaked the contrast a bit.  Any suggestions to bring a little more punch into these?


I shot these at a site that is normally still as a pond, but 10 minutes into the dive a stiff current started making macro photography impossible, so I should be happy with any result at all.  I failed to nail the focus on the eye of the first crab (blame the current, yeah, that must have been it!) but am happy with the second. Shot with the Olympus 60mm lens. 







a tale of two octopi

25 July 2016 - 05:31 AM

I had an unprecedented (for me, anyway) opportunity a couple of weeks ago to shoot portraits of two relatively cooperative reef octopi.  As luck would have it, it was my first outing with a new lens , the Panasonic 7-14 behind a Nauticam 6" dome.  The octopi were in a crevice, open at both ends, that was a cleaning station.  I got one shot with an octo that was in focus, and one with a shrimp that was in focus, but nothing where both were clear.  







These were shot at f8 so I should have stopped down, obviously, but how far could I have gone and maintained good IQ?  Advice welcome.  


The octopi took turns swapping places as I disturbed them with strobes. And since the alpha shrimp is posed identically and someone is probably going to ask if I was sure there were two of them, here's the only (lousy) shot I got with them in the same frame.



Lembeh Gulen Shootout - Charlton's filefish photo - how?!

15 June 2016 - 03:05 AM

I keep returning to this photo and still haven't figured out how it was made.  A buddy swimming parallel on the other side with a backlight?  A crazy long strobe arm with a snoot hanging over the fish?  A serendipitous burst of concentrated bioluminescence?  Someone (maybe Richard Charlton himself) please enlighten me!