planning my first scuba dive with G12

Ask about gear, cameras, lenses, technique or lighting

Moderators: tswinner, bvanant

Postby amb77035 » Sun Apr 10, 2011 2:17 pm

I'm planning my first scuba dive in Sosua, Dominican Republic in July with my Canon G12 during the day. This is my first time taking pictures underwater and I will be diving between 20-50m. Just wondering if the WP-DC34 is good enough for those depths? Do I need a strobe lights that deep? If i do need a strobe light is Sea&Sea YS-01 good enough?

Regards

AB
amb77035
 
Posts: 3
Joined: Sat Apr 09, 2011 4:27 pm

Postby TomR1 » Mon Apr 11, 2011 11:05 am

50M is a bit deep for an underwater housing and the poor light will negate most picture opportunities without a strobe. Generally you can get decent available light pictures on a well-lit day in clear water down to maybe 10 meters. You will either need to shoot in RAW and adjust, use a magic filter, or understand how to set white balance in order to get available light photos and your choice of scenes will be limited to well lit scenes.

Almost ANY strobe is a big advantage. The secret is getting close and shooting up. Strobes don't work past about 6' from the subject and 1/2 to 2 feet (1/6 to 1/2 meter) is the preferrable distance. Try to not shoot against the reef as a busy background confilicts with the subject. Try to get low so there is some water in the background.

In strobe photography the rule is: The shutter speed controls the background exposure. The srtobe power controls the subject exposure. Meter the water with shutter speed. You can drop to 1/80, even 1/60 if you are careful, in order to get blue water and you can increase to the limit of the camera to get a black background. With a strone you will probably shoot between F/5.5 and f/8 anthough in closeup macro work you can go higher.

Lots of things are affected when you have a camera. There is significent task loading that causes the photographer to lose focus on just diving. If this is your first dive with a camera do NOT take the camera on the first dive of the trip. Make sure that you get acclimated, get your bouyance correct and the proper weight first. I have made over 600 dives with a camera and still follow this rule!

Do not take the camera on deep dives. The best shots are between 7-10 meters. That's wher you need to start to get used to diving with a camera. I personally take a laptop with me, download and adjust my photos in RAW every evening to see what I have, what worked and what did not.

The G12 is an excellent camera. You will take great shots relatively quickly. Please post them when you return.
TomR1
 
Posts: 19
Joined: Sat Mar 19, 2011 9:42 am

Postby Zig » Mon Apr 11, 2011 2:01 pm

I agree with TomR1. Definitely invest in a strobe, unless you will only be shooting ambient light shots in very shallow water.

I know that the Recsea housing for the G11/G12 http://www.bluewaterphotostore.com/recsea-canon-g11-g12-housing is rated to 60m. It's a great housing and allows you to attached macro and wide angle wet lens. Check it out!

Have fun out there!
Zig
User avatar
Zig
 
Posts: 110
Joined: Wed May 12, 2010 9:26 am
Location: Huntington Beach, CA

Postby TomR1 » Mon Apr 11, 2011 3:06 pm

I like Inon strobes because they rarely break and the fibre optic connection is less hassel than an electrical connection. I agree with ZIG that some housings will go to 50m but i don't think the canon housings will and I question if most photographers would dive to 50 meters very often. Yes, there are some strange critters that only exist below 40 meters BUT starting out I would focus on getting your photography technique down at lessor depths.
TomR1
 
Posts: 19
Joined: Sat Mar 19, 2011 9:42 am

Postby amb77035 » Tue Apr 12, 2011 7:17 am

Thanks for your help. I decided to go with the sea&Sea ys-01 package from backscatters. It goes well with the G12 and WP-DC34.
@ Zig that's a nice underwater housing, but alittle too expensive since I'm decided to get some strobes. Wish i can rent it. :(

Listed below are dive sites whick are offered to me.

Canyon:
Experience level: Beginner
Max Depth: 18m
Sample of Flora and Fauna: Butterfly fish, angel fish, various smaller groupers, snappers, anemones, cleaner shrimp, many species of crabs, fan corals, various other soft and hard corals and much more!

West Wall:
Experience level: Beginner to Deep Spec. certified. Technical diving is possible.
Max Depth: 50m+
Sample of Flora and Fauna: Butterfly fish, angel fish, groupers, parrot fish, snappers, morays, soldier fish, squirrel fish, lion fish, scorpion fish, crabs, reef lobsters, rays, octopi, squid and a lot of coral.

Three Rocks:
Experience level: Beginner to Advanced.
Max Depth: 20m
Sample of Flora and Fauna: RAYS! Butterfly fish, angel fish, groupers, parrot fish, morays, snappers, lion fish, scorpion fish, crabs, reef lobsters, all kinds of coral, octopi, squid and more!

The Zingara:
Experience level: Advanced (Wreck Spec required for penetration dives).
Max Depth: 36m
Sample of Flora and Fauna: Large groupers, barracuda, jacks, snappers, soldier fish, squirrel fish, scorpion fish etc.

Larimar 1:
Experience level: Beginner to Advanced
Max Depth: 20m
Sample of Flora and Fauna: Octopi, jacks, damsels, eels, snappers, crabs, lobsters, stone fish etc.

Larimar 2:
Experience Level: Advanced
Max Depth: 40m+
Sample of Flora and Fauna: Everything you’d see at Larimar 1 with the possibility to see the occasional nurse shark.
amb77035
 
Posts: 3
Joined: Sat Apr 09, 2011 4:27 pm

Postby Zig » Tue Apr 12, 2011 8:02 am

@amb77035: I'm not sure where you live, but be sure to check out http://www.bluewaterphotostore.com. They're located in Santa Monica, CA. They may have a rental program, but it would be worth it to give them a call. Nice guys who know their stuff. (310) 633-5052

Have fun!
User avatar
Zig
 
Posts: 110
Joined: Wed May 12, 2010 9:26 am
Location: Huntington Beach, CA

Postby bvanant » Tue Apr 12, 2011 12:02 pm

Strobes will be a big help as Zig has pointed out. The Canon housing is rated to 40 meters but the things to see on the wall and to take pics of are all 30 M or less. If you do happen to go deeper the case will not self destruct but you will not be able to use the camera since all the buttons will be pushed in and the camera will not be useable. If you are planning on going very deep, get a focus light since you won't have any light for the camera to see how to focus.
Bill

Bill Van Antwerp Canon/Nauticam/Subal/Inon Lots of glass


Technical Advisor to Bluewater Photo


http://www.blueviews.net

User avatar
bvanant
 
Posts: 309
Joined: Wed May 12, 2010 4:16 pm
Location: Los Angeles (more or less)

Postby Zig » Tue Apr 12, 2011 2:33 pm

Yeah, I experienced some deep water "squeeze" when I used to shoot my Canon PowerShot in the Canon housing. The focus light is a must. I recently tried out the Sola 600 (http://www.bluewaterphotostore.com/sola-600-focus-light), and thought it was fantastic.

Zig
User avatar
Zig
 
Posts: 110
Joined: Wed May 12, 2010 9:26 am
Location: Huntington Beach, CA

Postby amb77035 » Sun Apr 17, 2011 12:40 pm

Thanks for your help. Since this will be my first time diving and taking pictures underwater I'll stick to 20m and above to prevent the squeeze effect. I will get the Sea&Sea YS-01 and the WP-DC34 in May, but won't dive until July. :(

Stupid question

Is there anyway to practice using the Sea&Sea YS-01 on land? I won't have any opportunity to get in the water and use them before July.

Thanks
amb77035
 
Posts: 3
Joined: Sat Apr 09, 2011 4:27 pm

Postby Zig » Mon Apr 18, 2011 7:19 am

Yes, you can set up your system in a dark room and practice shooting a subject. Notice the different effects based on strobe position. Also, if you have access to a swimming pool, practice there as well. You can get a lot of bottom time in a 3m pool!

Zig
User avatar
Zig
 
Posts: 110
Joined: Wed May 12, 2010 9:26 am
Location: Huntington Beach, CA


Return to Underwater Photography Questions

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 4 guests

cron