Aquarium Photography

Cheburashka

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I have an aquarium with some small creatures in it. I have tried taking pictures of them with my Sony Cybershot DSC-W50 but I am having trouble focusing. I know next to nothing about photography. Are there any settings I can change on my camera to get something close to this: http://mytriops.com/gallery/Dominik_T/Dominik_Tomaszewski_2?full=1
 

newrmdmike

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bring a light to help your cam focus, get a box and cut a hole in it that the lens can see through, but use a small enough box were it doesn't block your flash. . . then press the box against the glass and take your pic
 

nomav6

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bring a light to help your cam focus, get a box and cut a hole in it that the lens can see through, but use a small enough box were it doesn't block your flash. . . then press the box against the glass and take your pic

+1 heres some I took using pretty much the same method. Although not prefect, I think they turned out ok.

pic.jpg

seahorse.jpg

jfish.jpg
 

cosmonaut

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I think those are very nice. Your focus seems off a little but good work. If you fix the focus I think you would have some great photos with some minor PS adjustments...
Cosmo
 

fmw

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Turn off the flash on your camera (and leave it off forever.) Light the aquarium from the top. Focus manually if auto focus won't get the job done. If the creatures in the aquarium move, you may need to use an external flash gun to light the tank from the top so that you won't get motion blur.

I realize this isn't the sort of thing beginners like to hear but on-camera flash is so bad that I recommend not making the image at all if on-camera flash is the only solution to the problem. If you don't have external flash, then concentrate on making images that don't require flash. There is a whole world of wonderful images available for the taking with available light.
 

nomav6

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Turn off the flash on your camera (and leave it off forever.) Light the aquarium from the top. Focus manually if auto focus won't get the job done. If the creatures in the aquarium move, you may need to use an external flash gun to light the tank from the top so that you won't get motion blur.

I realize this isn't the sort of thing beginners like to hear but on-camera flash is so bad that I recommend not making the image at all if on-camera flash is the only solution to the problem. If you don't have external flash, then concentrate on making images that don't require flash. There is a whole world of wonderful images available for the taking with available light.

it was an ext. flash but I didn't have an option of doing it from up top, I was at a public aquarium.
 

PetersCreek

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On the subject of focus and fast-swimming fishes...

Watch 'em for a while before taking any shots. Fish sometimes swim in a (kinda-sorta) predictable pattern, so you might be able to pick a place with the best chance of catching a good shot with a good background.

If you can turn your autofocus off, I'd suggest doing so. Chances are, it'll never keep up with fast movers in often-dim aquarium lighting. Once you figure out your target area, you can manually prefocus on a zone and wait for fish to swim through it. Or you can manually prefocus, follow the fish (without changing focus), and snap when it appears sharp. If shutter lag is a problem, try a burst of several shots as it enters, swims through, and exits your zone.
 

fmw

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it was an ext. flash but I didn't have an option of doing it from up top, I was at a public aquarium.

Well, that's a tough one. I don't know that there is a good solution to that. My experience with public aquaria is that they are not brightly lit and available light would be inadequate to capture anything moving. I tried to get some shots at the Shedd Aquarium in Chicago once but I wasn't successful.
 

newrmdmike

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fmw, i took your advice on my last trip and shot 100 watt lowel id light from the top, and a speedlight . . . and it worked pretty well.

although i wish it had been 400 watts
 

GilTphoto

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some lenses also have a mimimum focusing distance, so if the subject is too close, it's impossible to get in focus. A polarizer will help remove glare from the glass.
 
OP
C

Cheburashka

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I took a few pictures but I'm not sure how to get in really close. I did notice that the camera doesn't focus unless it's a few inches away. I used a desk lamp pointing down on the aquarium. Anyway, here they are so let me know if you have any suggestions.

http://www.prism.gatech.edu/~gtg642x/triops.html

PS They're at full quality so it may take a while to load
 

gundy74

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get down to the same level as the aquarium. it looks like its on your floor so sit or lie down. lying down is the more stable option.

get closer to the glass. real close. like two inches. this will give you a better angle and isolate the fish from everything else

unclutter the background. placing the tank in front of a wall would help


hope that works
 

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