Rainbow-colored fish fascinate all of us. They’re shimmering, shining, slithering little creatures that are hard to capture on camera. Though it is challenging, the end results are so pleasing that it will all be worth the efforts. The most convenient place to click the fish is your home aquarium. There are a few tricks to take better pictures of these slippery things. Read on…

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Patience is the key

Photographing fish is tough mainly because it takes a lot of time to get a few good shots. Be prepared to wait it out and click lots of pictures. Keep the patience. It will pay off.

Use a tripod

It’s going to take time and patience to get good pictures of fish. Using a tripod would be a wise option if you’re using slow shutter speed to eliminate the potential blur due to camera shake. When you are taking many pictures, holding the camera will eventually tire you out. However, if you can achieve a fast shutter speed to capture their quick movement, a tripod may prove impractical.

Mind the reflections and refractions

The biggest challenge in photographing fish is reflection and refraction that can happen because of any light around the glass aquarium. To avoid this, turn off the lights in the room, draw the curtains or shoot during the night. The light inside the aquarium should be the only one switched on. Hold the camera perpendicular to the tank while clicking a photo. If taken at an angle, there will be higher distortion because of the higher angle.

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Observe the behavior of your fish

If you are aware about your fish’s behavior, you will know its favorite spots around the tank and the pattern of swimming. Observe your fish so that you are ready with your camera to shoot when the moment comes.

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Clean the aquarium

Before attempting to click any shots, clean out the fish tank properly.  Change the water. Scour the green algae that might have deposited on its bed. Scrub the glass walls spotless. Clear the gravel’s dirt with a vacuum cleaner. Do this at least a few hours prior to the scheduled shoot.

Switch off the pump

Turn off the pump. This will reduce the potential blur due to any movement in the water. The debris will also settle and you will be able to get clearer pictures. Don’t forget to switch it back on once you are done.

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Declutter the aquarium

Remove any fish tank hardware, such as the heater or the filter pipes, for cleaner shots. The pictures will turn out better with a simple background. Use shallow DOF to blur out the background and keep the focus on the fishes.

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And finally…

Before trying to photograph the fish in your aquarium, you need to decide what you want to focus on. Is it a single fish, or part of the tank, or the whole aquarium with all its inhabitants? The idea is that the subject should cover 80% of the frame. Once you know these tips, you can click away to some beautiful shots and come up with your tips along the way. Go fish!

Aatika, Write Wing Media