Playing with light and shadows

By Marcin Smok 9 years ago2 Comments

In photography controlling light is one of the hardest thing to master, yet it can give great results and can make a huge difference between an average photo and a memorable one. Sometimes it takes a little bit of experimenting before you can achieve the desired effect.

My subject was an overgrown frag of encrusting montipora species. I managed to light the whole coral tissue equally but I wasn’t fully satisfied with the result- the photo was clear and sharp, but it didn’t have that three-dimensional feel that makes it stand out of the crowd. So I dimmed down the flash output and pointed it straight above the subject to accent the irregular shape of rock this montipora grew on. You can see the effect above, tell me what you think…

Below is a link to this picture in high resolution, you can copy it and use as wallpaper.

  Corals, Eye Candy, Photography

 Marcin Smok

  (281 articles)

Marcin Smok is a reefer, photographer, traveler, SCUBA diver and avid DIY-er. He has been keeping freshwater fish tanks since he was 9 years old and saltwater tanks for the past 10 years. Check his photography site at and follow his Facebook profile


  • T3TRODOTOXIN says:

    Excellent photo Marcin!

    Have one question, hopefully you’ll be willing to share..

    Did you use a blue/blueish film or as some call “gel” on the flash to get that type of color out of the coral, or is that a plain old flash color temperature?


    • Marcin Smok says:

      Thanks for your comment. I’ve used a color gel on my flash,it was dark blue and I fired the flash at 1/4 output I believe. I also made a Diy flash snot to get that spotlight effect. Hope that helps

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