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Monthly Archives: October 2014

If you’ve been following along, you know I dive because I like the critters. The odder looking, the better. And then there’s this. No strobe. No color. No critter. So, this is a bit of a departure. It’s a detail from the Kittiwake, a former US Navy submarine rescue vessel. Sunk in Grand Cayman as an artificial reef. And there are some fish. Maybe we’ll see a shot or 2 of them later. But not that much growth on the ship yet.

So, why am I here? Well, it was a workshop and shooting with available light and filters was one of our assignments. And stretching boundaries is usually a good idea. So there you go. Will I be shooting a lot more wrecks? Probably not. But I did have some fun.

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Grand Cayman.

Olympus OMD EM5, 8mm fisheye.  Nautica housing with mini-dome port.

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Suggested musical accompaniment.

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Sting Ray City, Grand Cayman.

Olympus OMD EM5, 8mm fisheye.  Nautica housing with mini-dome port.

Alex has been trying to break me of the habit of shooting the dark green coral.  Has he succeeded?  In a word, no.

When I saw this scene, I immediately stopped to shoot it.  The good news is at least I’m better at lighting them now.

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Grand Cayman.

Olympus OMD EM5, 8mm fisheye.  Nautica housing with mini-dome port.

So, not only can I not remember the plot of the movie, I can’t even remember the title correctly.  It’s “Escape TO Witch Mountain.”  And really, it’s just the notion of spookiness and a storm on a mountain that I’m after. Because that’s what these silversides swimming against the top of the wall suggested to me.  Kind of like seeing your headlights reflected by back by a driving rain as you race around the mountain at night.

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Grand Cayman.

Olympus OMD EM5, 8mm fisheye.  Nautica housing with mini-dome port.

Got to love a nice straight fish trying to hide next to a curly, curvy fan.  Good thing I don’t eat trumpet fish, I guess.

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Grand Cayman.

Olympus OMD EM5, 8mm fisheye.  Nautica housing with mini-dome port.

Ok, so we’re not quite to Halloween yet, but here’s a nice scary shot. Fangs out. Looking like he wants to get into it. And a little fright lighting for good measure.

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Grand Cayman.

Olympus OMD EM5, 8mm fisheye.  Nautica housing with mini-dome port.

As usual at an Alex workshop, I learned a ton.  This is one of those things.

Tube sponge in the beautiful tropical blue water.  And the trick is the spin.  The strobe freezes the sponge.  And the ambient lights the background as you spin the camera.  Slow shutter speed, of course.  In this case, 1/15th of a second at f/11.  Next time, even slower shutter speed.

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Grand Cayman.

Olympus OMD EM5, 8mm fisheye.  Nautica housing with mini-dome port.

Well, there’s a lot more of Africa to come.  But first an interlude.  I’m just back from a terrific underwater photo workshop in Grand Cayman with Alex Mustard.  Got to see a few old friends and meet some lovely new ones.  Like this.  Note that this one was shot with a fisheye lens.  So like it says on your car mirror, “objects may be closer than they appear.”

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Grand Cayman.

Olympus OMD EM5, 8mm fisheye.  Nautica housing with mini-dome port.