Here are my notes with some of the fishing photography tips that pro photographer Brian O’Keefe shared at our June 2, 2021 SCFF meeting
He recommends the iPhone 11 or 12 to meet all of our fish pic needs. Specific notes regarding the use of those cameras are at the end of this piece.
- For a “Magazine Cover” format, keep the LENS AT FISH EYE LEVEL by the water surface, with the FISH HEAD ANGLED SLIGHTLY TOWARD THE CAMERA .
- With TOOTHY FISH, pics especially good with its head angled well toward the camera.
- Nice to show the ROD/TACKLE HELD NATURALLY, NOT over your shoulder, in your mouth, etc.
- Pics of FLIES are fun.
- Try getting UP HIGH. Stop the car for a good shot! Pics from a LOW DOWN angle are also especially good.
- Look for pics of CURVES IN THE RIVER, with the FOREGROUND IN FOCUS.
- CUT OFF THE PEOPLE, HONOR THE FISH!
- To take a pic of your buddy DON’T SAY “WAIT”, SAY “KEEP FISHING!”
- BACKLIT SHOTS ARE GREAT, lighting up the net, the fish’s tail, etc.
- Avoid the “BORING BULLSEYE” with your subject centered in the photo.
- ”30 SECOND RULE”: Take a bit of time to move to the spot with the best composition, background, light, etc.
- FISHERMAN LOOKING AT THE FISH (rather than at the camera) respects the fish.
- Showing MOVING WATER AROUND THE FISH is good.
- Showing JUST THE HEAD OF THE FISH is good.
- With SUPER SHINY FISH, FIND SHADE to show the scale detail.
- EARLY AND LATE LIGHT yield MORE COLOR and beautiful SILHOUETTES.
- With RIVER PICS show a VISIBLE ANGLER.
- Find INTERESTING COMPOSITION. DON’T CENTER EVERYTHING.
- With SILVERY FISH try bending fish at different angles to decrease reflection.
- Showing DRIPPING is good!
- ”THE HONORABLE BLUR” shows a moving fish.
- OK to hold BASS a bit out of the water, best just out at the surface, but KEEP YOUR ARM BEHIND.
- !! AGAIN !! : TAKE PICS AT LOW, EYE LEVEL TO THE FISH!! WITH ITS HEAD TOWARD THE CAMERA!!
- BTW: SHOTS LOOKING DOWN AT THE FISH BY SHORE SHOW all the MUD aroused in the water.
- On BRIGHT SUNNY DAY with the fisher’s face in shadow use FILL FLASH.
- Tell people to LOOK HAPPY! SHOW THE MOMENT!
- THROW IN SOME COLOR: shore foliage, etc.
- Show what fish eat!
- JUMPING FISH SHOTS: He gets LOW IN THE BOAT.
- For SHALLOW DEPTH OF FIELD (flower shots, bugs, etc) use PORTRAIT MODE.
- BIG COLOR is great to capture when present.
- He recommends the iPhone 11 or 12.
- Also good is Olympus T6-4 MP Olympus Tough, waterproof with 3” LCD, about $575. Both this and the above iPhones have excellent Macro ability.
- Good distance shots however require a pro camera with telephoto lens.
- He DOES NOT USE “LIVE” mode, but DOES USE TELEPHOTO AND OTHER function MODES.
- The VOLUME button can operate the SHUTTER.
- In PANO mode he seldom uses the whole range, often just 1/2 or 2/3 of the range.
- 3 colored dots in the upper right corner indicate FILTERS. These can be used before or after a shot. Be sure to SAVE THE ORIGINAL before trying various filters.
- PORTRAIT MODE blurs out all but the subject. He especially likes STAGE LIGHT MONO setting.
- iPHONES DON’T DO CLOSEUPS WELL. He makes a COPY, SAVES, THEN EDITS, usually brightening up BRIGHTNESS & SHARPNESS, then CROPS.
Posted on September 16th, 2021