Underwater Photography – Tips from a Total Newbie (Pt. 2)

Last week we looked at some of the equipment you might need underwater as well as issues around light and color. This week, we’ll talk about underwater logistics – how to position yourself, how to manage your movement and how to avoid getting eaten while you’re immersed in your shot. Continue reading “Underwater Photography – Tips from a Total Newbie (Pt. 2)”


Underwater Photography – Lessons from a total newbie

Let’s just clarify something from the beginning. I am not a photographer. That is to say, I rarely take photos (on land or in the water) that I would see as sellable or of much artistic merit. I do love taking photos though, and diving into the underwater world has been a really fun adventure. It takes all the difficulty of photography on land and adds the elements of movement (of both you and the subject), unpredictable light and inconsistent colors. Yay!

Needless to say, there’s been a steep learning curve, but in using tips and tricks I’ve been shown along the way, my shots have improved a LOT in just the few weeks I have been doing them. In this series, I want to show you the progress from my first underwater shot to my best and all the tips I learned along the way. Hopefully it will help you with your practice too! Continue reading “Underwater Photography – Lessons from a total newbie”

Sharks: The Americans of the Seas

When people ask where I’m from, I usually say, “America” (unless we’ve recently done something terribly embarrassing, in which case I fall back on, “Canada”). The problem is, the moment that word leaves my lips, I can see the instant judgements, stereotypes and classifications flick into place behind the listener’s eyes.

Shark Illustrations-001

When pushed for more detail, I give my home state of Utah, which triggers questions about Mormons, polygamists and (from the more interesting stranger) land-speed records.

We all know that no matter what we call ourselves or how we choose to identify, we are thrown into a box by the person on the judging end. And none of us are plopped in a more restrictive box than sharks.

Shark Illustrations

Much like Americans looks like this in the minds of many outsiders,


sharks are simplified to this: Continue reading “Sharks: The Americans of the Seas”

Tips for Newbies: Distract Yourself

I wouldn’t call myself a tenured diver, but with almost 38 dives under my weight belt in the last year, I am certainly not a total newbie. Still, I struggle sometimes with panic. It’s one of those things that gets in everyone’s head from time to time, and we all have to find a way to manage it.

It’s particularly important to find a way to deal with it underwater, where running to the exit is not always a great option. The fact that I shouldn’t leave often makes my panic double back on itself and grow stronger as I feel more and more trapped.

Mind games like this are frustrating, but they are, after all, just games, and they can be played from both sides. In the past I’ve tried a few strategies for the fear: I’ve tried talking myself through it. I’ve tried rationing with it. I’ve tried shouting at it. Nothing really worked, though, and I found another level of panic set in when I got scared my diving days were over because I couldn’t get my head around these moments. Continue reading “Tips for Newbies: Distract Yourself”