Coconut Octopus


Coconut Octopus



Anilao, Philippines



Canon Camera with single inon strobe with retra snoot



16 meters (52 feet at depth) during a day dive

The Coconut Octopus is very unique in the fact that it feels most at home in shells. It uses shells for protection and have been known to carry them as they walk across the sand.  This octopus was wrapping himself in the shell when I was getting ready to take a photo.  I was using a retra snoot to take the photo.  A snoot is a device that eliminates a section of light that comes thru the strobe.  Think of how an actor is on stage and the spot light comes down on them.  This what a snoot does to an image underwater.  The retra snoot has different masks you can insert for more creative ways to bend light.   You can close down the spot light so there is just a slight bit of light coming thru, to make the image more pronounced.   In this case, the snoot was attached to the end of the strobe and was locked into position so it didn’t come off.   The snoot and strobe were pointing at a slight angle above the octopus.  This enabled the shell to glow while getting the octopus in frame.  The little bit of light that came thru the retra snoot was able to emphasize shadows with the image and eliminated the background completely.  This octopus was very cooperative and acted like he wanted the photo.  It was pretty cool to see him in action.  I was pleased with getting this image in focus while still getting the light to play off the shell.  Snoots are great but you have to have a subject that stays still and is a willing participate. 

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