I haven’t posted in quite a while, due to a combination of dives where I didn’t take any decent photos, long business trips, and not being able to find my camera. Luckily, I found my camera the other day just in time for a couple of dives at Porteau cove on one of the hottest days of the year! My drysuit flooded severely, but luckily it was warm enough that my insulation kept me warm enough to manage a couple of good one hour dives.
In spite of not having had my camera in the water for a while, I managed to get some decent shots. I’ve posted quite a few today, as I liked how a lot of them turned out, if not for the technical photographic qualities of the photos, but rather more for the subject matter of the photos. There is so much life hidden in the waters here, that’s very easy to overlook if you’re not looking hard.
Some of the highlights from these dives were a couple of Octopuses, however they were well hidden so I couldn’t get any good photos of them. Another spot in Porteau had hundreds of Opalescent Nudibranch in a small area, which was amazing. I spent some time hovering just above the bottom trying to take some close up photos of the better-posed ones. This proved quite a challenge, as I had to maintain perfect buoyancy and trim so as to not touch the bottom and accidentally crush any of them, since they were literally everywhere.
There were also decorator crabs all around the reef structures, including plenty of very small, potentially juvenile longhorn and graceful decorators. Graceful decorators are very hard to spot, as often they blend in perfectly with the bottom, so you have to be very adept at noticing subtle movements and the blob-like shape they make. Taking photographs of them is also very difficult, due to how well they blend in to the background. Setting up the strobe to get a good shadow on the crab, and striving for a black or contrasting background appears the key to get them to be noticeable in a photo, but is very difficult to accomplish.
As usual, lingcod were sitting everywhere, including some massive ones. I tried snapping some photos of them and have included them below. They’re somewhat skittish, so it’s difficult to adjust a strobe from close to the camera (for macro photos) to far out (to reduce backscatter when photographing larger subjects) without spooking them. There’s not much in the local shallow waters that’s bigger than a lingcod, so a large, awkward, loud, bubbly scuba diver must be somewhat concerning to them.
Another highlight was the large schools of different kinds of fish above some of the shallower reefs. Some of these fish are amazingly colourful. One day hopefully I’ll have powerful enough dual strobes and a wide angle lens to actually manage a decent photo of them! (Dreaming of a DSLR camera)
Anyways, without rambling on too much more, the rest of my photos are below! I’m off to try and find the massive leak in my drysuit….