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First shots with dual strobes

Post your photos for critique or praise

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Postby Zig » Sun Dec 19, 2010 5:40 pm

Any feedback would be appreciated! This was my first outing with dual strobes (DS161 & DS125). Shot with a Nikon D90 with 105mm lens in an Ike housing on TTL, at Crescent Bay in Laguna Beach, CA.

Settings were 1/125, ISO 200, and aperture varied from f14 to f22. All shots are uncropped with the exception of the hermit crab pic. Minor adjustments made in Photoshop.

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Postby bvanant » Mon Dec 20, 2010 5:58 pm

Sorry we didn't get to dive Sunday. Your pics look fine to me from the lighting perspective and the sharpness is good too. I would work a bit on the composition. For example, in the first black eyed goby pic, the bit in the upper right of the pic is quite distracting as is the brown stem under his chin. The second goby pic looks to me a lot nicer and a good job with the depth of field control but I wish his eye was a bit more crisp. Overall though you did a good job for the first time with two strobes. You might want to play around with controlling one of the strobes a bit more to create some shadows to create some depth. For example the inside of the hermit crab where it is dark, really makes that picture pop out for me.

In any case, I don't want to sound harsh, they are nice pics and now that you have the technology of the shooting down, it is time to make all the other aspects of the photography work.


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

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Postby scottg » Mon Dec 20, 2010 11:20 pm

focus, sharpness, subject selection are all great. You are getting close, getting low and getting some difficult shots.

Like Bill said the next is to take it to the next level with even better compositions. You can also try some level adjustments in photoshop bringing up the blacks some. I'd try varying one strobe power a little to bring back some shadows.

Here's an example

Scott Gietler Owner/Editor, Underwater Photography Guide & Bluewater Photo

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Postby Zig » Wed Dec 22, 2010 11:32 am

Thank you, gentlemen! I take the recommendations to heart, as I truly believe it is the only way to get better. I'm looking forward to our next dives together.

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Postby smb2 » Wed Dec 22, 2010 8:39 pm

Well Zig, when the comments start telling you to work on composition you know you are at least at the next level :)
Like the other responses I would try different strobe power settings. The anemone for instance would be a great subject to take 5-6 shots of, varying strobe position and power.
It's so easy to take a shot, look at the LCD and histogram, say "OK" and move to the next subject.
When you have a nice stationary subject, work it. The Gobies might not be as cooperative.
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Postby wommby » Mon Jan 17, 2011 11:14 pm

Hi Zig,

Nice photos. I have recently got a 105mm macro and done only two dives with it. Can you tell me - do you use manual focus or auto focus?

I have done one dive on each setting and not sure which is best or what should be used. I know you can use the auto focus with manual override but this seems awkward. (For me at least anyway). I am using mine on a d700 camera. Sometimes with a wet diopter, depending on subject and how close I want to get.

Keep up the great photos.

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Postby Zig » Tue Jan 18, 2011 9:07 am

Hello Deb,

Thank you very much! I use only auto focus with my 105mm. I use a focus light to assist, as it struggles in low light. I've found that pre-focusing on an object (eg your hand) helps as well. I recently purchased a 60mm lens and a 1.4x teleconverter. Wow, the speed of the auto-focus is so much faster! I didn't even need a focus light on my last dive here in Southern California. That really helps out in the often surgy conditions we have locally. I will most likely use that combo (which fits nicely in my 105mm port) for a majority of my shooting. I will keep the 105mm on-hand for when I decide to go super-macro with a wet diopter, or when the water is clear and calm (rarely).

I hope this helps!

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