Aquarium of the Pacific

July 13, 2008 by  

Tropical Fish at Aquarium of the Pacific

How to shoot at an Aquarium

Step 1: Forget the Flash

When you go to an aquarium it is a courtesy to the sea life to not bombard them with fill flash. Besides the glass on the aquariums will bounce back the light and ruin your photograph. Yes you could shoot at an angle and reduce the bounce back but just be kind to the fishies and forget the flash.

Step 2: Use a fast lens

If you are using a point and shoot then you get to use the lens you have but if you have an SLR then use a fast lens. Another idea is to use a prime because usually these can be even faster then their zoom counterparts. Jamie used a 50mm f/1.8 prime lens on the photo above.

Step 3: Learn to set the ISO

The rule is to bump up the ISO last after everything else has been done to improve shutter speed. So if you are shooting at f/1.8 and you can’t turn on more light (which you can’t at the aquarium) and you can’t use a fill flash and you photos are still blurry then you might need to bump the ISO. The higher the ISO the more noise. With film this will translate to more noticeable grain. Either one is better than blur. Luckily reducing ISO noise is a top priority for the camera manufacturers so as time goes on this will improve.

Step 4: Be patient

Fish and Sea Mammals are not going to pose for the camera so sometimes you just have to be patient to get the shot. Next time you are at an aquarium put these four steps to practice and see what develops.

Be sure to check out our other shots in the gallery.


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