Training the Eye to Recognise Great Subjects

How can we train our underwater eye to recognise the potential in a commonplace subject? Let's start by looking at some scenarios which may NOT make a good subject.

• As already discussed, subjects which live on, in or close to the reef may be difficult to shoot by virtue of their inaccessibility. We can take a snapshot through branches of coral, but in general they have little potential by virtue of their location.

• Remember, it's not the subject at fault — it's where or how the subject is located.

• Reefs that are horizontal, however pristine or attractive they look, may have little potential for the same reason. It may be difficult if not impossible to point the camera at any angle other than down, which is not the best way to compose subjects.

• Lying across corals to steady ourselves or disregarding the reef is totally unacceptable — don't do it!

So how do photographers obtain those great shots in books and magazines, which we all aspire to?

This is precisely what subject selection is all about.

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