Be Aware of Distortion

When using wide angles, the relative size of subjects near and far is distorted. Nearer subjects appear to be larger and closer than they really are, and more distant subjects appear to be smaller and much further away. Wide angle lenses do, in effect, increase the appearance and scale of

FIG. 9.3 Distortion is a challenge to avoid and is most prominent towards the corners of the frame. Wreck structures are problematic but when shooting the reef I find more often than not that I get away with distortion problems. The distortion still occurs but is less noticeable. You can clearly see how the post towards the right side is distorted.

FIG. 9.3 Distortion is a challenge to avoid and is most prominent towards the corners of the frame. Wreck structures are problematic but when shooting the reef I find more often than not that I get away with distortion problems. The distortion still occurs but is less noticeable. You can clearly see how the post towards the right side is distorted.

underwater visibility because the background appears to be more distant. This can be used effectively to create huge fissures in areas where they don't exist — for instance, using a small gap as a surround for a distant diver or seascape gives the impression of a huge hole, which frames the distant reef.

Again, when photographing divers interacting with marine life, by composing the fish closer to the lens than the diver you can achieve a dramatic impression of a subject greatly oversized in proportion to the diver in the background.

FIG. 9.4 This Hawaiian hard coral formation looks huge with the diver in the far distant blue. Excellent visibility abounds with clear blue water. Wrong! Perhaps not exactly wrong but an exaggeration. The hard coral is about 20 cm wide, the distant diver is 7 to 8 metres away, and the visibility was an average 20 m. Wide angle lenses are such a powerful tool in that they enhance the appearance of the seascape.

Nikon D200, Nikon 10.5 mm fisheye lens, f11 at 1/30th sec, ISO 100, two small Sea & Sea flashguns placed left-hand side and above the housing to evenly illuminate the hard coral.

FIG. 9.4 This Hawaiian hard coral formation looks huge with the diver in the far distant blue. Excellent visibility abounds with clear blue water. Wrong! Perhaps not exactly wrong but an exaggeration. The hard coral is about 20 cm wide, the distant diver is 7 to 8 metres away, and the visibility was an average 20 m. Wide angle lenses are such a powerful tool in that they enhance the appearance of the seascape.

Nikon D200, Nikon 10.5 mm fisheye lens, f11 at 1/30th sec, ISO 100, two small Sea & Sea flashguns placed left-hand side and above the housing to evenly illuminate the hard coral.

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