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Animals, Plants, & Nature Week

with JenFruzz

F e l l a . 0 2 by thekidKaos

Find your favorite art form in education format by either browsing the galleries on the right or visiting #projecteducate's 2013 Roundup. To find out what's coming up in 2015 check out the schedule.

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Tips For aquatic Photography

Fri Oct 9, 2015, 2:01 PM by Daemare:icondaemare:

Animal, Plants, & Nature Week

Some of the most magical photos are of our aquatic friends. Here are some tips to help you capture these amazing creatures.

General Aquarium Guidelines

The aquarium is a public place and is often crowded. Getting there when it opens or towards the later evening will better your chances of having an unobstructed and unrestricted view of the tanks. 

If you go during busy hours, make sure to be courteous and careful. Do not 'hog' the tank. Take a few snaps, step back and let others see the tanks. If it is crowded, you will have to wait your turn. Crowded areas will not only provide obstacles for taking photos, but also pose a risk to your camera. Keep a tight grip on it with the strap around your neck. You can be easily jostled or have the camera stolen from you in a crowd.

Photographing Through Vertical Tanks

These tanks are the most numerous and the most difficult to shoot through because they catch people's reflections very easily. The severity of these reflections can be mitigated by utilizing the light surrounding the tank. If it is dark, there will be fewer reflections, but they may be more pronounced. A brighter environment will cause many faint reflections. Most of these can be taken out in post-processing.

The angle at which you take your photo can minimize the reflections in your photo. I have found the best angle to be a straight-on shot. Keeping your lens parallel to the glass will help keep most reflection at the top of or above your lens. The closer your get to the glass helps reduce your own reflection. 

Contrary to popular belief, a flash will not always be detrimental. If it is dark, a bright spot will show in the photo, but with proper framing, it can be cropped out.

Moray Eel by Daemare Nereid's Toadstool by Daemare

Photographing Through Horizontal Glass

These types of tanks are more observational in nature. You would find flounders, crabs, and more sedimentary creatures in these tanks. Thus, you don't need to worry about them moving so much. Instead you need to worry about stationary lights above the tank. They will give  permanent refeflection. There are three ways to get around this. First, simply edit them out in post processing. If they are in the background, this is easiest to remove. 

Crustacean by Daemare

Second, Hold the camera at a 40 to 60 degree angle to the glass. This will make the circular relfections from the appear sliimer and if you can find the right angle, disappear all together. Lastly, you can lean over the glass to create a shadow. Be sure to be safe while doing this. Also, be aware of how much you are reflecting in your shadow.

Neon Tips by Daemare

Photographing Jellyfish

These ethereal beings are one of my favorite things to photograph at an aquarium. They are also one of the most difficult. Unlike fish and crustaceans, jellies rarely stop moving. Depending on the type of tank they are in, this can make capturing a clean photo even more difficult. Like with the verticle glass tanks, you want to stay parallel to the glass as well as getting close. There are two types of tanks they are housed in, referring to the lighting within the tank. Almost all jellies are exhibited in darkened area, so their tanks can either be brightly or dimly illuminated.

Floating Sapphires by Daemare

In dimly illuminated tanks, like the one above, the jellyfish are usually translucent and pale colored. A lower ISO is recommended because a lot of noise will result in the black space of your photo. However, it can't be too low due to the conditions being extremely dark. A flash will not help you here. I recommend using a shallow DoF (large f-stop number) to help bring in more light.

Dangerous Tangle by Daemare   Twirl by Daemare

A brightly illuminated tank is easier to shoot. You can use a faster shutterspeed so the jelly won't appear blurred. The colors will also be more vibrant. A flash can be used here to cast a shadow as seen in the above righthand photo.  The most important thing is to be patient with these as jellyfish in these tanks are usually more active. Also some aquarium use alternating light colors as a gimic. 

Thanks for reading! If you have any questions, please note Daemare!

More Journal Entries

CRCP Award Winners

CRCP Award - March 2015 by DMD-CT

Want to get involved?

There are many ways in which you can get involved with projecteducate and if you'd like to write an article we would love to hear from you!

Community Weeks

We have an upcoming Community Week which you can read more about here. Community Weeks are designed to get the Community involved in Project Educate. We want YOUR articles, whatever the topic, as long as the focus is educational.

Art History

Art History weeks are all about the history of art! You can pick the topic you want to write about and post it during one of our Art History Weeks. For the latest sign up information and to get involved visit here.

Handy Hints and Tips

We also have a a series of Handy Hints and Tips which you can get involved in by reading this article here. This series aims to deliver shorter articles focusing brief tips with visual examples to aid you with many areas of your art.

Artists' Toolbox

Artists' toolbox weeks include a series of Art Tool themed articles intended to update you on what's out there, what the best tools are for the trade (in our humble opinions) and how to use them. Find out how to get involved here!

Community Volunteer Weeks

Our Community Volunteers regularly run weeks here at projecteducate and if you feel like you could help them out then check out the schedule here to see what's coming up and note the CV!

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We actively encourage all of the above and invite you to note the group with your thoughts and feedback. Look forward to hearing from you!


projecteducate Schedule 2015

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Add a Comment:
SinistrosePhosphate Featured By Owner Sep 8, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist

I just wanted to let you know that my article has been uploaded for this week's "Art in the Professions". 

vw1956 Featured By Owner Aug 17, 2015  Hobbyist Photographer
Thank You so much for requesting my article :hug:
cooley Featured By Owner Aug 12, 2015  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Can people submit their own educational journals to the group?
(1 Reply)
Tanner28 Featured By Owner Aug 4, 2015
Dearest DA staff member,

I only have one question.

Why doesn't Deviantart let the site users know what changes will be made BEFORE they are made?
(1 Reply)
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