Composition in Underwater Photography

An introduction to properly composing your shots
By Scott Gietler

What do you want included in a photo? What do you want left out? What idea do you want your photo to convey? As your underwater photography progresses, you will put more thought into what you want your photograph to convey. 

Composition is an art, not a science. These rules and ideas for composition are meant to give you ideas for how to creatively compose your shots, not to lock you into rigid rules. The best composition for a subject will depend on your personal preferences.

As your underwater photography progresses, good composition will become more natural and intuitive. However, even experienced photographers can benefit from trying new compositional ideas.

If you are a beginner to composition, you should watch this composition video tutorial.


Underwater Composition Topics Covered:

and much more.


There are many photographic examples with explanations and settings.

Composition in Underwater Photography
Scott Gietler
An introduction to properly composing your shots


Scott Gietler is the owner of Bluewater Photo, Bluewater Travel, and the Underwater Photography Guide. Bluewater Photo, based in Culver City, CA is one of the world’s largest and most prestigious underwater camera stores, serving many thousands of customers each year, where nothing is more important than customer service. The Underwater Photography Guide is the world’s first website to feature free tutorials on underwater photography, and has become the most trafficked resource on underwater photography worldwide. Bluewater Travel is a full-service dive travel wholesaler sending groups and individuals on the world’s best dive vacations. 

Scott is also an avid diver, underwater photographer, and budding marine biologist, having created the online guide to the underwater flora and fauna of Southern California. He is the past vice-president of the Los Angeles Underwater Photographic Society, has volunteered extensively at the Santa Monica aquarium, and is the creator of the Ocean Art underwater photo competition, one of the largest underwater international photo competitions ever held in terms of value of prizes. He lives in California with his wife, newborn girl and scuba-diving, photo taking 4 year old son.

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