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andreas berntsen

Searching for a mentor

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Hi.

Not sure where to post this.

I am looking for a mentor who can give me some help toward constructive chritisism,tips,

challenges and general information on how to become a better photographer and hopefully

get some prints out in the long run.

 

I bought my first housing,a second hand Aquatica A7D in December 2014 with domes,ports,flashes,videolight,

arms,lenses,macroflip with all the accessories thinkable and one more canon 7D.

Could say I went all in with this purchases.

Since I was only a open water diver with very limited experience,ca 12 dives or so in Norway,

and had a huge Aquatica-/sea&sea-system to learn, it was some kind of a big jump into a new world.

The time stopped me from trying all the settings,domes,lenses etc. before departure because of a very delayed

delivery, so I was just making sure the housing did not leak and of I went.

Thats the best way to do things I`ve heard.

Buy a lot of new things,dont learn how it works and then travel to the other side of the planet for a `holiday`..

 

In preperation I did read about do`s and dont`s and whatever I could find on the topic included:`the underwater photographer`.

But it is ,obviously,not the same to read about things without even having touched the gear I was going to use.

The canon 7D however is a camera I have been using for some years on land and is somewhat familiar with.

I left Norway and stumbled into the water in Tulamben,Indonesia with a huge rig of a camera

and a mindset of shooting some small stuff.

I had no idea of how small this creatures actually was.The head of a skeletonshrimp does not exactly fill the

frame with a 60mm macro and a macroflip.

Not that I had ever heard of such an animal before either, but the guide was very good at pointing out all the

stuff I could not see or knew excisted so it was plenty of learning going on.

The results after the first dives? Well, not exactly perfectish....

Kind of rubbish...No shock there!

Tried to get the eyes of the skeletonshrimp in focus..Well screw that!

The frustration came sneeking in.

 

After some dives I got some `documentaryshots` from several small froghish and I learned new things all the time

so it was great fun and at the same time easy to improve from the rubbish start.

Now I have done the Divemasterinternship in Bunaken and Lembeh wich was great,

and are more confident both in the water and with the Aquatica.

My learningcurve has been visible,thankfully but it is ofcourse still so,so much more to learn.

Im spending the rest of this year in Indonesia and are probably going to do the same next year, so it will

be plenty of diving and shootingoppertuneties in the months to come.

 

I am hoping someone would be so kind and patient to give me some input.

It makes me in awe seeing all the great images you people at Wetpixel are making.It is truly inspiring!

Really enjoing the new world with all the colors,patterns and shapes,wideangle,macro,I love it all

not to mention meeting all those weird freakin` divers out there...

 

Thanks for your time.

Andreas Berntsen

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Hello Andreas, we run the Bali Academy of Underwater Photography, so if you are in Bali again let us know and we can set you up with a private 3 day photo class.

baliuwphoto.com

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It's well worth it, Andreas. Mike and his colleagues are excellent people and very knowledgeable. I can recommend them!

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Look at the guided trips in Underwater Photography web magazine. I found them (particularly Alex Mustard's) very rewarding, before age and poverty caught up with me...

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Thanks for the tips TimG and tdpriest.

I have been considering to do a phototrip. Guess that is one of the best way of learning, but i really like to keep both my kidnys and when I look at some of the prices, well then I just end up with kidney left...

Some kind of class is on my todolist though. And what I have read Alex Mustard come higly recommended.

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Andreas, I am not in Sanur at the moment, have been in North and North East Bali for the last few weeks. If you are still around next week then I am back in Sanur and could meet up.

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If you make it up to north Sulawesi (Lembeh) then the team at NAD are very experienced photo instructors

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That last one is bizarre, and I mean that as a total compliment! In general these are very good. There's a bunch of things that could be done in post, like frog fish could be a stronger picture if you rotated it slightly so it's symmetrical, or a graduaded filter on the clownfish to account for the lack of light at the bottom of the frame...

 

I'm wondering: what's your goal?

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Hi coinee.

Sorry for the late reply!

Thank you for the feedback.

I really appreciate it.

 

The clownfishpicture should have a smaller aperture, think i shot it at F 18, in retrospekt i should probably gone for F22 so the sunball would look better.

 

My goal...

Well, it would be fun to run away with some prices in contests and also be able to publish something along the way.

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Okay, if that's what you're going for I can only recommend going to workshops and also shooting a lot. And trying new things. I can recommend Martin Edge's workshops and tuition days, he has a great way of explaining things in an understandable way, and I'm sure the same would be true for Alex Mustard and others. Oh, and look at all the winning pictures of these contests, there's a bunch of commonalities that you can find that apparently help. :)

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