Learning how to take good photos underwater is easier than you would think and it doesn’t have to cost a lot of money buying expensive underwater cameras.
With a range of cheap underwater cameras and watertight covers for your existing cameras or smartphones there is no need to splash out on new camera gear to start taking great pictures.
We are going to look at all the options available to use your existing equipment, what disposable gear you can use along with information on how to actually take good underwater photos.
Disposable Underwater Cameras
One time use cameras for water photography generally come preloaded with a roll of film and with the addition of batteries are ready to go out of the box.
Always make sure you purchase a camera with a flash as this will produce the best results in the water and check the maximum rated depth for the model you are using before going into the water.
Intova SS01 Sport Utility Film Camera (35mm)
This 35mm camera from Intova is a good example of a value underwater camera and is waterproofed to 100 feet. This model has a built in flash and a shutter button that needs a good level of pressure to operate taking away the possibility of being accidentally pushed and wasting film. Some of these throwaway cameras are available as the digital variety, this reduces the overall cost as there is no paying for processing the film.
For a good selection of underwater cameras click here
Watertight Covers for Cameras
Another option for taking pictures in the water is to waterproof a camera you already own by using a sealed plastic case. These are reusable but don’t offer the same depth rating as some of the purpose built camera.
Neewer Underwater Camera Dry bag
This Neewer dry bag for cameras is a general case that fits many different models and is waterproof down to 20 meters, always check that your camera will fit and function in any case you purchase.
There are also many cases designed for specific cameras, you can check if a case is available for your model here.
Watertight Covers for Smartphones
Our current versions of smartphones have very good cameras that are more than capable of taking pictures and video under the water.
Fitting the iPhone 3G, 3GS, 4, 4S and many other similar phone models this case is rated to 100 feet in depth. The design allows the use of touch screen functions for total control of the phone while keeping it dry.
Finding the right case for your phone is essential to keeping it safe and dry, check model availability here.
The Mechanics of Underwater Photography
Because of the massive lensing effect created by water objects will always appear bigger so if your camera is fitted with a zoom make sure that it is dialed all the way down. This will give you a very wide lens which will improve the quality of your pictures.
Your distance to the object should be as small as possible, pictures taking from far away underwater will be smeared with the surface light reflecting off the water and give pictures a severe blue tint.
A nice calm day will mean less sand and mud kicked up from the bottom giving a much cleaner shot every time.