Underwater photography is the process of taking photographs while under water. It is usually done while scuba diving, but can be done while diving on surface supply, snorkeling, swimming, from a submersible or remotely operated underwater vehicle, or from automated cameras lowered from the surface.
Underwater photography can also be categorized as an art form and a method for recording data.
Successful underwater imaging is usually done with specialized equipment and techniques. However, it offers exciting and rare photographic opportunities. Animals such as fish and marine mammals are common subjects, but photographers also pursue shipwrecks, submerged cave systems, underwater “landscapes”, invertebrates, seaweeds, geological features, and portraits of fellow divers.
The primary obstacle faced by underwater photographers is the loss of color and contrast when submerged to any significant depth. The longer wavelengths of sunlight (such as red or orange) are absorbed quickly by the surrounding water, so even to the naked eye everything appears blue-green in color. The loss of color not only increases vertically through the water column, but also horizontally, so subjects further away from the camera will also appear colorless and indistinct. This effect is true even in apparently clear water, such as that found around tropical coral reefs.
Underwater Photography Definition
Strobe or Flash – a source of full-spectrum light vital to underwater photographers. This can be built into the camera, or supplied as an external light.
Some cameras are made for use underwater, including modern waterproof digital cameras. The first amphibious camera was the Calypso, reintroduced as the Nikonos in 1963. The Nikonos range was designed specifically for use underwater. Nikon discontinued the Nikonos series in 2001 and its use has declined as with other 35 mm film systems, but not disappeared.