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Taking clear photos without backscatter when using flash is
nearly impossible even with a pair of off-camera strobes. I
still get a fair amount of it since I use small flashes on short arms
just 6 inches away from the lens. I sacrifice that for ease of
mobility. What does work is to avoid taking photos when there is wave
action or divers kicking up sand or silt. Of course in
most cases we can be that selective, so you can attempt to disguise
some backscatter by including a 'busy' or light-colored background
that ideally falls a few inches behind the subject and
receives a good amount of flash illumination.
Blue water backgrounds and wide shots are pretty much impossible to
take without backscatter, especially with a compact camera and the
built-in flash. I many cases you would be better off turning the
flash off and shooting in shutter priority (Tv) mode with a shutter
speed no less than 1/60 second to prevent motion blur. I go one
step further by converting blue images without much character into black
& white with Photoshop.
|HOW TO REMOVE BACKSCATTER WITH PHOTOSHOP
HOW TO CONTROL
It is possible to manually adjust the brightness or
darkness of a distant background (beyond the range of flash
illumination) with a camera that allows the shutter speed to be changed
while aperture remains constant. After taking the first shot as a
baseline, lighten the background by selecting a longer (slower) shutter
speed or darken it by selecting a shorter (faster) shutter speed until
you are satisfied.
In most cases underwater while using flash as the
primary source of illumination, you can produce a pleasing blue water
background by exposing the water about 1.5 to 2 stops darker than the
camera's meter reading. Exposing on the true meter reading with
flash often results in too much ambient light causing overexposure of
the foreground and pale blue water.
Note that the smaller the aperture (higher f/ number)
is, less light enters the lens, requiring the use of flash, especially
with macro photography. This is almost always necessary to produce
a wide zone of focus for small subjects and high magnification.
The drawback is that background light is reduced considerably resulting
in a dark background prone to unsightly backscatter.
HOW TO AVOID AN
ORANGE OR BRIGHT SPOT WHEN USING A FLASHLIGHT
Use the fastest shutter speed possible (up to the
camera's maximum flash sync speed) to reduce exposure of this light
source and make sure the flash is turned 'on'. Use an LED or HID
lamp instead of halogen if possible and install a frosted diffuser over
the flashlight if possible to soften and spread the beam
intensity. You could also hold the flashlight farther away from