Let there be light…
…and welcome to my friend named ‘Backscatter’. After a long time of gear-lusting we finally dropped some $$ in to a strobe light for our trusty Canon S95. Inon make quality strobes and one of the smallest on offer is the S-2000. Right now we’re in the low season so I can get some practice in. Here is my friendly lionfish again. Sometimes called ‘turkey-fish’, in my opinion they look like a Philippines’ fighting cock. With the strobe badly positioned you can see balls of reflected light; this is called backscatter and it will become my nemesis I believe. Special thanks go to an old colleague Ting who picked up the strobe while on vacation in Taiwan. Thanks Ting!
Yesterday I tried out a new bit of photography- surfing photos. It was actually really difficult but I managed to get a couple of decent shots. The waves were ‘fun size’ and as you can see from the picture on the left, the waves break on to a fairly shallow reef. It was an interesting morning and special thanks go to Dan and Mike for allowing me to use these shots.
Some people may be wondering why there are so many macro (small animal) photos on our blog. To make a long story short- big fish move too much for me to get a decent picture! I am fairly new to underwater photography but have the leisure and pleasure to have a tropical reef on my doorstep. Macro photography normally concentrates on either slow or non-moving animals, or fish that have a predictable range of movement.
As you may have noticed in your garden, slugs are not terribly good at running away at the first signs of danger. Underwater slugs often have some radical colourings to deter potential predators. Black, white and yellow colour combinations are often used in the animal world to advertise that they may sting or taste bad. Wasps and bees do the same thing. Stripes are also used by underwater animals such as sea snakes and lionfish such as this wee guy below.
I feel like getting all poetic so I shall name this shot: Lion in the Desert.
Yesterday Jude and I went for an exploration to some new dive sites… as well as one of our favourites at Mundhoo Kandu where we caught up with our friend ‘David’ the Goliath Grouper. I was really happy to see him again, this time hanging out with a few ‘bigeye trevally’ under the southern overhang. Light was problematic at such depth which you can see from these pictures.
On hindsight I should have tried a few different shutter settings to try darken the blue water- the trade off though with increasing shutter speed is the need to open the aperture resulting in some fuzzy pictures sometimes.
I was happy to have Jude modelling which she loves about as much as a fish loves a bicycle.
The second shot was supposed to have Jude in it… but she was a few meters deeper. Mundhoo Kandu’s approach from the south is a real delight in shallow water. There was very little current bowever there was definitely some surge to contend with in the top 6 meters. The reef shot was taken at about 10 meters. The final shot is a Oriental Sweetlips with a cleaner wrasse doing the rounds.
For a long time I have been trying hard to get a decent shot of the little juvenile razor wrasse that we find in the lagoon. It takes a long time of waiting idly by before one can approach close enough to get a shot. If you move in too quickly they disappear in to the sandy substrate and are content to wait there until you finally move away.
The juvenile Razor Wrasse has a really cool appendage on its head. I don’t know if it serves a real purpose or it it is just there to break the outline of the fish itself helping it to mimic bits of leaf- much like the juvenile batfish.
Around the same area was a huge warty slug- one of the biggest I have seen. Very toxic they display their colours proudly.