Tuesday Tips & Techniques from Photo Pro Sascha Janson #25
On select Tuesdays, Cameras@Lembeh Resort – the first and only dedicated photo & video center in Lembeh Strait with full time on site photo pro – will feature Tips and Techniques by Photo Pro Sascha Janson. Sascha will offer up a range of information, you never know what piece of wisdom he will impart.
Sascha says: Use a pointer!
I always use a pointer stick (NOT poker!) while diving. It helps a lot to stabilize myself especially here in Lembeh, but even when diving on coral reefs I use it. Just make sure to only place them on “dead spots”, not on any living parts of the reef.
I have the pointer in my left hand so I can get close to the subject and stabilize myself while holding the camera with my right hand. When I’m finished photographing I take a deep breath and push myself slightly off the sand without producing huge clouds of sand. This also helps to keep you from provoking the dreaded Diver Rage, when your fellow divers plot how to ‘accidentally’ cut your hoses due to the fact that you are always ruining the visibility just when they want to take a photo of some cool critter.
You may see some interesting variations on the classic pointer stick – with or without clips for attaching it to your BCD when not diving (highly recommended), lanyard – also recommended, especially if you dive on walls disappearing into the abyss (where you don’t want your pointer stick to also disappear), pointer sticks made of fancy carbon fibre or plastic which are super light-weight but not much use for anchoring in strong current, colorful metal ones for accessorizing with your fins (no comment!), and you can even find pointers with centimeter or inch markings so you can later prove just how big or small that critter or great white shark was.
If you have ever tried to take a photo of a super-camouflaged pygmy seahorse, you are familiar with just how hard it is to find and focus on this tiny animal when looking through the lens. It can be very useful for someone (usually your guide but it could be your super-helpful buddy) to use a pointer stick to indicate where the pygmy is. You can find the tip of the pointer easily, and from there, quickly find the pygmy. When you are ready to take the shot, use your pre-arranged signal (a loud grunt or squeal works well) to tell the person pointing to move the stick away. Remember, NEVER use the pointer to touch or poke the pygmy or the sea fan it lives on. It’s for stabilizing yourself or for pointing out critters, it should never be used to poke, prod or move underwater creatures.
Stainless steel pointer sticks are available at the critters@Lembeh Resort dive-center for purchase.
Stay tuned for more Tuesday Tips & Techniques