Getting hooked on photography
Sport Diver reader Tony McCann talks about his journey from wannabe scuba diver to satisfied amateur photographer…
I always dreamed of being able to scuba dive, but life took over and time just sped by. I was in my late 30s when I did my first Discover Scuba Dive experience in Cyprus in 2009. Don’t get me wrong I wouldn’t change the things that prevented me from taking up diving earlier - I am a firm believer that things happen for a reason.
What I saw in Cyprus overwhelmed me. It made me realise how lucky I was to be able to experience what I was seeing and I wanted to share it with other people, but at the time I didn’t know how I could. After a great holiday I returned and decided to complete my Open Water Course in the UK. Originally I had no plans to teach but after completing the Open Water course and being inspired by the Instructors that taught me, I decided I wanted to pass on my love of the underwater world to others and began furthering my education with the completion of the PADI professional courses.
I know what you are thinking - another article about someone completing their Open Water, Advanced, Rescue, Divemaster, Assistant Instructor then Open Water Instructor courses. Well, that was meant to be what happened, but I found underwater photography instead. As I said before, I knew I wanted to be able to share what I was seeing with others and photography was my way of being able to do so.
My passions truly came alive after completing a Digital Underwater Photography (DUP) course. I have spent the last couple of years learning to take photos underwater with a compact camera and now teach the DUP course to others. I have taken photos in the UK and abroad and have been extremely happy with the results. What has kept my passion for underwater photography alive is people saying to me: “We didn’t realise that there was so much to see underwater”.
Having had the realisation that underwater photography is what I want to do I decided to try DSLR photography. I, along with a couple of friends from my local club, went to a tuition day with Martin Edge and wow did that day show me the unlimited possibilities available.
My passion is black and white images, particularly on wrecks as the depth, detail and eeriness of the photograph really capture my imagination. I have had a number of people ask for copies of these photos, which only serves to inspire me further. It’s not about money, rather the appreciation of others - I don’t currently sell my photos.
Ansel Adams once said: “There are always two people in every picture: the photographer and the viewer.” That is so true, and I am happy to now call myself a photographer.
To view more of Tony’s pictures, check out his blog.
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