Green Sea Turtle, Dumaguete Philippines


Green Sea Turtle


Apo Island, Dumaguete, Philippines


Canon Camera, with dual inon strobes, wide angle lens


6 meters (20 feet at depth) during a day dive

The great thing about Dumaguete for diving is that you can shoot macro photography during one part of the day and then dive at Apo Island in the afternoon.  From the resort you are only a 20-minute boat ride to Apo Island and the huge green sea turtles.  The boat had a freshwater soaking station on it.  This was for the camera.  The saltwater wears down the camera so bathing it in freshwater as soon as you get it out of the ocean is imperative for a camera’s longevity.  To take advantage of the size of the turtles I used a wide-angle lens.  The dome that I have on my cameras allows you to get very close to a subject without losing any of the animal in the picture.  What a lot of people don’t understand is how close you have to get to a subject so the turtle does not look like it is 20 feet way.  I have found being 12 inches (30 cm) from the subject is the best distance.  If you can get closer, great!   The closer the better.   You just don’t want to stress out the animal you are shooting.  You can judge what is a tolerable working distance with the turtles by seeing how they react to your approach.  The turtles slept in the coral and if you approached them slowly you could get inches from their face.  To really take advantage of the marine habitat I would move a little bit away from them, so I could get the coral with the turtle, in the shot.  The corals were vibrant in color and complimented the green pigment on the turtle. 

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