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Old May 10, 2004, 9:35 PM   #1
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Not sure if it belongs here, but if it doesn't please move it to the section best suited.



Now what I am wanting to know is what is the best way to take pictures of aquariums? Now I am not meaning the big ones that house Shamu, but the hobbiest tanks.

I want to take pictures of my fish in my 20gal and I find it tricky since I do not have access to the greatest of light. The tank is self has nice white flourescent lighting, while the lighting around is is yellow incendcent.

I can correct the white balance enough, but since there does not seem to be enough light the camera likes to set for a slower exposure. Well with fish, it does not work very well and alot of the shots are fuzzy.

Anyone know how I can trick the camera into taking a shot and speeding up the shutter without overexposing?

I've played around with my Canon a60's settings and was wondering what environmental things I can do to help out


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Old May 10, 2004, 10:10 PM   #2
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use manual...if possible....and lower the arperture a couple stops...that way you can raise the shutter without losing exposure

hope this helps
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Old May 17, 2004, 5:06 AM   #3
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hi gimli,

this isn't the best example but this i took on a much bigger aquarium that you might have.
the lighting of course is one sided(middle) so have to find ways to compensate. i'll take more pics and see if i can do better.

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Old Jun 10, 2004, 11:23 PM   #4
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Well, I'm a bit late to this topic, but better late than never...

Berto, is that your saltwater tank? If so, pretty darn nice! I can't justify the expense of setting up and maintaining a saltwater aquarium, so I satisfy myself with a 72g bowfront planted freshwater tank.

I've been trying to snap pictures of my fish and plants and there really is more to getting a good shot than you'd think. So far, most of my pictures aren't worth posting. When I do get one, I will post and explain what I did.

Meanwhile, here's a link to a site that describes some techniques for photographing fish:

http://www.characin.com/photography/

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Old Jun 11, 2004, 4:38 AM   #5
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thanks for the comments geoffs.
as for the tank, its not mine though i wish it was . that picture and the picture of the seahorse in "stupid pet tricks" were taken at, the BIGGEST aquarium in the world. its Called Underwater world. its funny that i work so very nearby and never been there in the 3 years they've been open. but i finally have and captured what i think are "alright pictures"

included inside is a very cute picture i have of "Nemo and his dad"
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Old Jun 11, 2004, 9:28 AM   #6
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Nice shot of the clownfish, berto. Those are some rather handsome and neat little fish, aren't they?

I'd never heard of Underwater World before. It's obviously in Guam, right? Perhaps one of these years I'll get my opportunity to visit Guam and actually see this place.

In this picture you froze the clownfish very nicely. What kind of camera do you take the pictures with and what were the particular parameters for this shot?
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Old Jun 11, 2004, 10:55 AM   #7
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hi geoffs. the camera i'm using now is a canon G5. its great. works wonders.
the picture was taken at a downward angle so the flash wouldn't bounce off the thick aquarium glass which is i'm sure a couple of inches thick.

settings 3.2f@1/350th of a sec with flash. i didn't bring my tripod(which i think is a great tool, especially if you have a G5 and planning on shooting creatively :roll:

here's another picture from Underwater world and to answer your questions, yes its on Guam. this is of a, well, a a scary fish! hehe i don't know their names.



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Old Jun 21, 2004, 10:15 PM   #8
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This image was taken with my D70 with my 50mm f/1.8D lens attached in the shark exhibit at Sea World in San Antonio, TX.The glass was running about a 45-degree angle from me. I made no manual adjustments to the built-in flash exposure compensation.Here is the Exif data:

Nikon D70
2004/05/25 16:28:29.2
JPEG (8-bit) Normal
Image Size: 752 x 500 (from Nikon View6 resize to 1/16)
Lens: 50mm F/1.8 D
Focal Length: 50mm
Exposure Mode: Aperture Priority
Metering Mode: Multi-Pattern
1/2 sec - F/1.8
Exposure Comp.: +0.7 EV
Sensitivity: ISO 200
Optimize Image: Custom
AF Mode: AF-S
Flash Sync Mode: Front Curtain
Auto Flash Mode: Built-in TTL
Auto Flash Comp: 0 EV
Color Mode: Mode Ia (sRGB)
Tone Comp: Medium High
Hue Adjustment: 0°
Saturation: Normal
Sharpening: Auto
Noise Reduction: OFF

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Old Jun 23, 2004, 10:34 AM   #9
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I read once that aquarium photographers willtemporarily put a sheet of glass into the aquarium to limit how far back the fish can go. I don't mean squashing the fish against the glass :Obut enough room for the fish to turn around in. This way, the fish is close to the glass so it will be sharper, and you don't have to do as much work with focusing. Of course remember not to clean the glass with any chemicals, or you might make your fish sick! Pleas note: I don't have an aquarium, so I haven't tried this technique. It's just something I read when I was reading some books on photographic techniques.
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Old Jul 1, 2004, 1:23 AM   #10
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Been awhile since anyone has posted to this topic, but I've just gotten around to playing around with taking photos of my fish after a bit of a layoff. The main thing that has changed since my last attempts is that I bought a 3-way pan head for my Bogen tripod. Now, I can leisurely manually focus on a particular spot in the aquarium and wait for my fish to swim through the field of view. I use my IR remote to take the picture and have to actually anticipate since there is probably a 1/2 to 1 second delay from the time of IR depression to shutter open and flash going off. I'm probably getting about 1 good shot out of every 2-3 taken. Since this is digital film, who cares?

My exposure was set for aperture priority at f/8.0 and shutter speed was 1/125, the sync speed with my flash. The camera was set for ISO 50 and exposure compensation of -1/3.

All the images have been cropped from the originals and levels and USM applied. Click on these smaller images to get a larger one in a new window.

Bronze Catfish, view #1:


Bronze Catfish, view #2:


Amano Shrimp:


Otocinclus (an algae eater):


Siamese Algae Eater:

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