In the Dark with Hammerhead Sharks
For the underwater photographer, a camera with an ultra-highresolution sensor like the Canon EOS 5DS R can be an invaluable tool when facing challenging marine subjects. Sometimes, diving conditions prevent us from getting close to the subject. In other cases, the animal might simply be wary of us, so we are forced to keep our distance. To get the shot, we need to be creative, and work fast and precisely.
On my recent trip to the Red Sea in Egypt, I was fortunate to be able to capture impressive images by making use of the exceptional performance of the EOS 5DS R. Due to the unique marine environment of Daedalus Reef, hammerhead sharks are often found in large schools. However, on the first day, there wasn’t a hammerhead in sight, even as deep as 35 metres. I decided to change my strategy.
The following day, I reached the site before the other dive boats arrived, hoping to get the first shots of the day. At 39 metres, the pitch-black water must have been welcoming to the sharks, as it didn’t take long for a school of hammerheads to swim by, with a few friendly individuals coming almost within shooting distance.
Although I was further from the sharks than I would have liked, the EOS 5DS R’s 50.6-megapixel sensor provided a way to compensate for the increased distance. The low-light conditions presented no difficulty for the EOS 5DS R, thanks to its lightning-fast 61-point autofocus system, which allowed me to achieve accurate focus on the subject.
In addition to the incredibly high pixel feature, the crop feature allowed me to instantly extend my lens focal length by up to 1.6 times while still retaining enough pixels to produce large prints. It’s always frustrating when images turn out blur, but now that I’ve tried and tested the EOS 5DS R, I believe that it is the underwater photographer’s secret to amazing images!
Image taken with the Canon EOS 5DS R using EF 11-24mm f/4L USM lens, 1/125s, f/8, ISO 200, FL:23mm
• 50.6-megapixel full-frame CMOS sensor • Dual DIGIC 6 • 61-point AF system with up to 41 Cross-type AF points • 150,000-pixel RGB + IR metering sensor