Great White Shark Photography

Started Jan 16, 2014 | Discussions thread
dwa1 Veteran Member • Posts: 3,932
Re: Great White Shark Photography

Chris 88 wrote:

PepsiCan wrote:

But in such a case I would actually use a polarizer filter instead. This type of filter removes glare from water, so you'll have fewer issues with the water causing your metering to be thrown off.

I read that it's inadvisable to use a polarized filters on anything but a tripod as the light reducing effect has to be compensated by an increase in shutter speed and/or aperture. I also found that the general recommendation was that it's only used in bright conditions, but I will be shooting at sun rise so I expect it to be a little grey out.

As I will be on a rocky boat in (probably) overcast condition it seemed to me that 'the internet' would suggest not using a polarized filter in these condition as it will cause image blur.

I like the idea of cutting down the glare from the water and seeing 'into' the water more but not at the loss of sharpness to the shark.

I have no experience in these matters just going on what I've researched so tell me if I've got it wrong!


I use CPs all of the time in bright daylight (although I have not done breaching Great Whites). It really brings out the detail for me in things like butterfly wings, bird feathers. I have used these for many years. A CP reveals details (textures and colors) that would otherwise be obscured by bright reflections of light.

I would recommend these items...

B+W KSM CPs. These are excellent CP filters. I normally buy oversize filters and step up rings so that I can use them with multiple lenses. Then I use screw-on metal lens hoods. This makes it very easy to quickly adjust the CP so that it has the minimum effect needed for the expected shots. I say "minimum effect" to help keep the shutter speeds up.

If you get CP filters that match the lens filter size and try to use the original / std lens hood, then you'll have to reach inside the hood in order to adjust the CP. This is by no means "fast".

Tips - When adjusting the CP, rotate it (using the screw-on lens hood) in a direction that would tighten the CP filter - counter-clockwise. This way they will not get loose during adjustments. You will need a set of filter wrenches too. I haven't found any good ones yet (they are flimsy plastic and difficult to use) - but needed at times to remove the step up rings). You can use standard lens caps on the end of the screw-on hoods.

If you need more shutter speed, don't be afraid to under-expose. You'll have plenty of "shadow recovery wiggle room" in post.

Hope this helps and may your trip be blessed beyond anything that you could ask for or even imagine.


 dwa1's gear list:dwa1's gear list
Nikon D300 Nikon D7100 Nikon D7200 Sigma 150mm F2.8 EX DG Macro HSM Nikon AF-P 70-300mm F4.5-6.3G VR
Keyboard shortcuts:
FForum PPrevious NNext WNext unread UUpvote SSubscribe RReply QQuote BBookmark MMy threads
Color scheme? Blue / Yellow