Underwater photography is a specialized art form, requiring practice and some very specialized gear.
Additionally, you have to understand the sport of swimming, the process of racing and the timing of strokes and turns.
Underwater sessions are great fun for swimmers as they allow images that most photographers can't capture with DSLR-quality and offer a critique of their underwater swimming form.
It is amazing the little things you see underwater that get missed topside.
In this image, Julia started about 20 feet from the wall and made a normal, relaxed swim into the wall, slower than what she would in a race.
I asked her to swim at a moderate pace because it helps reduce the bubble trail in the water behind her.
This is a shot that can take several attempts to get it perfect, as the timing between camera and swimmer are a little different.
When she hit the wall, as we had discussed, she made her turn and then held the push off position just a couple seconds longer. By doing so, it allowed me the opportunity to perfectly frame her while allowing some of the bibles to dissipate.
It ensure that she is well lit, there is a 600-watt strobe boomed over the pool with a 10" reflector providing a concise and perfect light for the image.
This image was created using the pool at Zebulon Country Club. I shot from the 5-foot depth area with the background being the 9-foot diving area. With the diving area being so deep, this allowed me to have a naturally darker background than shooting across the 5-foot area.
As with any session, but particularly with swimming, safety is a key part of the process.
I spend a fair amount of time making sure that the swimmer understands what I want them to do since I don't want them to wear out early.
I also spend a tremendous amount of time making sure that my strobe is properly weighted down and will not fall into the water.
For this reason, I choose to use a battery powered strobe, which is not plugged into a constant power source and generally weigh it down with several pounds of weight.
Also, since water reduces the power of radio transmission, it's almost impossible to use a on-camera trigger to create these shots.
Instead, I have to attach a plug in my housing to my camera, hook the external link of the plug to a sync cord and run the sync cord to the transmitter, which is laying several feet away on the pool deck.
It's important make sure both the swimmer and I remember that there is a cord in the water and not to hit it. Obviously, the worst that can happen is my trigger gets pulled in the water, but I prefer no one get tangled in the cord either.
These underwater sessions are so much fun for both me and the swimmer and really churn out some great images. If you'd like to schedule one, call or email me and we'll connect to get you scheduled.
Location: Zebulon, NC.1/1600; f/4.5; ISO 100; 24.0 mm.
9225 Ashton Glen Drive, Zebulon, NC 27597 - (252) 341-0974 - Call Today