During the past week I have been working hard to document many of the species that are found in the waters around Little Gasparilla Island. To do this, I really needed to make my field studio portable so that I could photograph various species of fish before releasing them. I worked hard to set up my field studio and aquarium in the boat where space is at a serious premium. Add some strong winds, high boat traffic, and a giant white diffuser and things got pretty complicated. Fortunately, my wife Carrie was with me and could act as a flash stand (and she also caught most of the specimens I photographed).
The studio you see here looks complicated but is actually pretty simple. It is all based around a 10 gallon fish tank where the subject is held. I have a single flash above the tank with a small diffuser to light the subject itself. The white background is the large diffuser that Carrie is holding and I use two flashes to light it evenly. Not only does this provide the background, it also provides some backlighting to highlight the translucent parts of the subject. This exact setup was used for a lot of subjects, some of which will be published in the coming weeks, but if you want to see some results now, check out the Grey (Mangrove) Snapper and keep an eye out for the Gag Grouper, Spotted Seatrout, and Diamond Lizardfish coming soon.