A Shot in the Dark

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A Shot in the Dark

May 23, 2010 10:05 am

Any professional photographer or camera operator will tell you that light is one of the most important contributing factors to the final shot. So what happens when you are doing photo shoots at night and underwater. In this blog we will look at underwater photo shoots at night.

Water is 800 times denser than air so when light passes through water it is diffused. While light is being lost so is color. In fact at just 5 meters depth (16ft) almost 90% of color can be lost. Underwater lights are essential for any nighttime shoot.

Last Sunday the underwater team at Bigfoot Studios worked on a Mick Gleissner underwater photo shoot at night. This marked the maiden flight of a new underwater lighting system designed by The Bigfoot Studios Art Department. 6 lights, each contain 400 to 1024 individual LED bulbs per light. The light generated from a mass of tiny LEDs is truly impressive and contributed to some unique underwater images.

Shooting underwater at night adds a new element to the production. Safety is always a priority with the Underwater Studio team and the reduced visibility at night meant everyone had to be extra alert. As the underwater lights were running off cables there was a risk of entanglement, which the safety divers kept a sharp eye on. While in front of the light the model is perfectly lit, behind the light the crews are plunged into darkness. With cables in the water everyone had to take special care not to get caught up.

Electricity and water do not mix well either. The LED lighting system was designed for many reasons, one of them because they can run from a small 12V power source such as a battery. This eliminates any risk of electrocution during production.

Being photographed underwater at night is also a daunting task for the models. At night with the bright underwater lights trained on them they are not able to see most of the underwater team. This can be a strange experience for the models but once the safety diver has reassured them and Mick starts shooting, the models fell into their roles beautifully.

The challenges of shooting at night are vast but the Underwater Team at Bigfoot Studios managed once again to provide and safe and effective underwater production. The new underwater lighting system was very impressive and helped Mick capture some truly unique images that only a night shoot can provide.

This entry was posted on Tuesday, April 5th, 2011 and is filed under news . You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.