Nikon Americas USA

121ArticlesRemaining

3.7 Rating
Chromatic Aberration

Chromatic aberration is a phenomenon in which light rays passing through a lens focus at different…

NEW
Read
Viewing
4.9 Rating
Speedlight Tutorial: Day to Night Technique

David Tejada uses Speedlights to create the illusion of a night scene

NEW
Read
Viewing
3.5 Rating
VR Image Stabilization

VR image stabilization technology detects vertical and horizontal movement and offsets it by…

NEW
Read
Viewing
4.4 Rating
Quick Tips for Taking Better Portraits

Suggested Lens choices, exposure settings and focus modes

Beginner

NEW
Read
Viewing
4.6 Rating
5 Easy Composition Guidelines

Follow 5 easy tips for better photo compositions

Beginner

NEW
Read
Viewing
4.5 Rating
A Basic Look at the Basics of Exposure

The relationship between aperture, shutter speed and ISO is the basis of every…

Advanced

NEW
Read
Viewing
4.2 Rating
Using Variable Neutral Density Filters to Adjust Exposure in DSLR Video

Adjusting exposure with Variable ND filters

NEW
Read
Viewing
3.7 Rating
DX NIKKOR Lenses

Nikon Digital SLRs FX and DX sensors

NEW
Read
Viewing
4.3 Rating
Polarizing Filters Add POW to Pictures

An Easy to Use Accessory, Polarizing Filters Bring out the Color and Definition in…

Advanced

NEW
Read
Viewing
4.6 Rating
The Challenge of Bird Photography

Moose Peterson tells why photographing birds in the field is well worth the challenge.

Advanced

NEW
Read
Viewing
4.6 Rating
Using the D810A DSLR for Deep Space and Nebulae Astrophotography

Photographing Nebulae and other celestial objects with…

Advanced

NEW
Read
Viewing
4.4 Rating
Benefits of Using the AF-ON Button for Autofocus

Three pros discuss using the AF-ON button for AF control

Advanced

NEW
Read
Viewing
4.2 Rating
Shooting the Full Moon with the COOLPIX P900

Using the Moon Scene Mode and 83x zoom of the COOLPIX P900

NEW
Read
Viewing
4.1 Rating
Taking Better Photographs of the American West

When you get a chance to visit the open prairies, and photograph ranchers…

Beginner

NEW
Read
Viewing
5.0 Rating
One Shot: The Forest and the Tree

Photographing the same subject different ways

Beginner

NEW
Read
Viewing
4.1 Rating
Critical Focus: Getting the Most From Your D800

Michael Clark on getting the most out of your D800 HD-SLR

NEW
Read
Viewing
4.3 Rating
How to Photograph a Solar Eclipse

Learn the techniques needed to shoot solar eclipses from Mr. Eclipse, Fred Espenak

Advanced

NEW
Read
Viewing
4.7 Rating
Joe McNally

Commercial photojournalist Joe McNally is a Nikon Ambassador. Learn more about his photography.

NEW
Read
Viewing
4.3 Rating
One Shot: After Image

Jack Dyking on seeing in color and thinking in B&W

NEW
Read
Viewing
4.4 Rating
For Memorable Family Vacation Photos, Focus First on Family

Tamara Lackey on taking great photos during family vacations

Beginner

NEW
Read
Viewing
4.1 Rating
ISO Control

For digital photography, ISO refers to the sensitivity of the camera's sensor. The ISO setting is one of…

Advanced

NEW
Read
Viewing
3.1 Rating
How to Film Using Autofocus, Rack Focus and Manual Focus Techniques

Focusing tips for HDSLR video shooting

NEW
Read
Viewing
4.7 Rating
Speedlight Tutorial: Bounce Technique

David Tejada uses Speedlights wirelessly for pleasing portrait illumination

NEW
Read
Viewing
4.4 Rating
How to Photograph a Lunar Eclipse

Learn the techniques needed to shoot lunar eclipses from Mr. Eclipse, Fred Espenak

Advanced

NEW
Read
Viewing
4.3 Rating
Nikon F-Mount

The Nikon F-mount makes a host of lenses available to photographers.

NEW
Read
Viewing
4.5 Rating
3D Color Matrix Metering II

This system of evaluating light determines the best possible exposure for a particular…

NEW
Read
Viewing
4.1 Rating
Nikon Electronic Format (NEF)

Nikon's RAW file format contains all the image information captured by the camera's sensor.

NEW
Read
Viewing
4.2 Rating
When to Use Graduated Neutral Density Filters

How to use a graduated neutral density filter to decrease extreme light to…

Advanced

NEW
Read
Viewing
3.5 Rating
Have Fun Shooting Selfies (Self-Portrait) Photos

Tips and tricks for taking great Selfies

Beginner

NEW
Read
Viewing
4.5 Rating
How a Sports Illustrated Photographer Shoots his Kid's Games

What can a Sports Illustrated photographer teach you about…

NEW
Read
Viewing
5.0 Rating
Matthew Jordan Smith

Celebrity and fashion photographer Matthew Jordan Smith is a Nikon Ambassador. Learn more about his…

NEW
Read
Viewing
4.6 Rating
Outside Shots: Go Long

Tony Sweet on revealing the invisible in images

NEW
Read
Viewing
4.6 Rating
Action and People Photography

For those who want to take better people and action photos

NEW
Read
Viewing
4.4 Rating
Taking Better Photographs on the Water

Harbors, bays, oceans and rivers all have one thing in common—interesting and…

Beginner

NEW
Read
Viewing
3.3 Rating
Getting the "Cool" Look

My daughter, Kiara, wanted some pictures of herself with her new guitar. She was looking for some…

Advanced

NEW
Read
Viewing
5.0 Rating
The Power and Beauty of Bears and Other Animals

When the animal in the viewfinder is a bear, this photographer knows…

NEW
Read
Viewing

How-To Take Great Photos at the Aquarium

As a National Training Specialist for Nikon, much of my job is educating photographers and photo enthusiasts how to take great photographs and videos with their Nikon photographic equipment. On a number of occasions, I’ve been asked to lead Photographer’s Night at the Aquarium of the Pacific, in Long Beach, CA. After taking many photographs in this environment, I decided to put together all of the tips that I’d found to be the most helpful when visiting an aquarium with your camera.


Reflections and Refractions

The single biggest challenge to aquarium image creation is dealing with the external reflections. The aquarium is lit so you can find your way around, which can cause issues because the light reflects off of everything! The walls, benches, your clothes, your camera gear, you and the other visitors as well will all be visible as reflections in the glass of the large aquarium tanks.

 In order to even be able to attempt taking worthwhile photos, you need to control the reflections. Blocking them is a start. You could wear all black clothing to block the reflections…but even all black clothing usually has buttons... and then there’s the issue of your face. Yep... it reflects too. I guess you could go dressed in full Ninja gear... But the looks you’re likely to get... May not be the best idea.

So, the solution is to use a lens hood. When pressed against the face of the aquarium tank, a lens hood will form a cone of reflection free darkness.

 Score! Well... almost. 

The problem is that a hard lens hood that’s made of either plastic or in some cases, metal, will still have some issues. They can scratch the front of the tank’s glass or acrylic surface. As photographers, we need to tread lightly and not ruin the experience for the next visitor. Additionally, many lenses now come with scalloped hoods that would still let in light. And don't even get me started on the fact that most modern public aquariums have "upgraded" to curved-face tanks. These curved faced tanks can even gather reflections from around corners!

 Here is where the rubber meets the road... err... fish tank. 

By using a simple generic rubber lens hood, you can create a completely reflection-free cone of darkness.

The rubber lens hood is excellent for bending and adjusting to your body's small movements as you hold the camera against the tank surface and try to compose your image. Nikon offers rubber lens hoods to fit a variety of lenses. Check your lens' manual to make sure you're using the correct one. The rubber will not harm the tank face, and they're inexpensive. They work best on normal to moderate telephoto lenses. When paired with a wide-angle lens, it is easy for the lens to "see" the hood. This causes rounded black cropping of the corners of the picture, so you’ll have to take care when composing your photographs with a wide-angle lens; you may need to crop your final image so the lens hood is not visible. 

You also need to watch out for light refracting through the face of the tank. Many modern aquarium tanks are made of a thick acrylic material. I find that I need to be extra careful when photographing through such a tank face. In this situation, you will need to shoot perpendicular to the tank face, otherwise you’ll likely see a colored (purple) ghost of your subject. This is due to the way light passes through the face of the tank.