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Noticing the small details in fish photography
Greg Myers

You have taken several photos so that you can remember the best day of fishing that you have ever had. You send your film off and get it developed only to find that the photos are too dark or there is a big shadow across your face because of the capís bill or the fish is real small in the photo.

There are 2 major mistakes that people make when taking a photo. The first is not having the sun to the back of the photographer and the second is not getting close enough to the subject of the photo. Letís face it, the fish is the subject of the photo. That is what should dominate the photo. We donít care what color shoes you had that day, we want to see the fish and the face of the person that caught the fish. Get in there close and get a good close photo of the fish and the personís face. Let the fish and the anglerís face dominate the photo. Notice the things that take away from the photo to the right and above. Notice the shadow from the cap, the background is cluttered and the fish is not the subject of the photo. Closing down on the photo to just the fish and Luke makes them the subject of the photo.

When you are taking the shot, you may want to use the flash, even on a bright day. This will take the shadow out from the bill of the hat the angler has on. The distance from the angler will determine how strong of a flash that is needed. Most of the newer cameras have an adjustment for how powerful the flash is for the photo. My camera is a digital camera so I can look at the photo and see if I need more or less flash. This assures that I have good photos to remind me of the trip.

Notice the photo to the left. There is no shadow from the cap bill, the fish and Luke are the main subjects of the photo. There is nothing in the background or foreground that takes away from Luke and the bass in the photo. The fish and Luke are both in focus and they dominate the photo.

Below is a checklist that will make it easier to take better fish photographs:

  1. Make sure the Trophy Size Bass and the person that is holding the bass is the subject of the photo.
  2. Donít break the jaw of the Trophy Size Bass. Hold the jaw and put a hand under the fish to take weight off the jaw. Also, show the belly of the fish.
  3. Hold the fish close to your body, photos were the fish is held out at arms length makes the fish look a lot bigger than the person and looks unrealistic.
  4. Get close to the fish, we donít care what color your shoes are.
  5. Have the sun at the back of the photographer.
  6. Shadows, under the hat brim may require some flash.
  7. Background Ė No tree limbs growing out of your friends head or the fishís mouth.
  8. Make sure trash and tackle in the boat is not taking away from the photo.

Common problems that prevent the photo from being a great photo:

  1. The photo has too much background in it. Move closer to make the Trophy Size Bass and the person that is holding it bigger in the photo. People donít care what color the shoes are or if they are standing in the boat or not.
  2. Things in the background clutter the photo and overpower the Trophy Size Bass and the person holding it. An example would be where it looks like a tree limb is growing out of the mouth of the Trophy Size Bass or out of your friends head. Move until you get a plain background.
  3. Shadows under the brim of the hat can cause a dark shadow. Move the person around so that you eliminate the shadow or use the flash on the camera to take the shadow out.


  • Is the fish and the face of the person the subject of the photo?
  • Are you close enough? How much of the photo does the fish take?
  • Where is the sun? Do you have a shadow under the capís bill?
  • Is the fish being held close to the body?
  • What is in the background of the photo?
  • Do you see any trash or tackle in the photo that will take away from the fish?


About the Author

Greg Myers is Editor-In-Chief for an on-line Bass Fishing magazine. This Web Site contains information on Oklahoma Bass Fishing, Trophy-size bass fishing and also has Bass Fishing information on some Northeast Texas lakes.

Greg is in constant contact with Bass anglers from all over the United States sharing information and ideas on Bass Fishing, especially Trophy-size Bass Fishing.

You can find more information on Greg at<.