Going Underwater with Fuji by Mohamed Hakem

Going Underwater with Fuji

by Mohamed Hakem

Hello Steve, thought I would share my first underwater photography experience. I can consider myself as an experienced landscape/travel photographer so I thought to give underwater a try.


Photography is my lifelong passion, combining it with an amazing hobby like Diving/Snorkeling is a dream come true. My excitement for snorkeling in one of the best spots in the world was never complete without taking my camera with me. I live in Egypt which have no shortage of marine life as the Red sea is one of the best diving areas in the World.

I decided to go to Dahab in Sinai; a lovely small town that you can find people having dinner with their diving suits, such a peaceful place where diving spots are meters away from the shore. I was low on budget so I spent the money wisely.


First of all the equipment I used:

· Fujifilm XT-1 + 10-24 F4 + battery grip
· Dicapac Cover ( A more of a hardened plastic bag than an underwater case) (50$)
· Scuba pro orbit mask + snorkel (67$ on amazon – 35$ from Dahab)
· Cressi pro light fins (60$ on amazon – 25$ from Dahab)

The Scuba Pro orbit mask is the best as the glass is very near from the Eye, so you can get the viewfinder closer to your eyes, I also used a battery grip to double the battery life.

Shooting Experience: the Fuji was just as amazing underwater as it is above, the auto focus did not hunt as I expected and the metering was perfect. I pre adjusted the settings as my cheap housing did not allow me to reach and change the settings on the go, so I left the shutter at 1/200, left the aperture and ISO to auto and of-course on auto focus. I used the rear LCD most of the times.




The housing allowed me to go up to 5m depth, I didn’t need more than that because I wasn’t targeting traditional underwater shots or certain fish species, actually I will be amazed by any colored fish and I will never compete with professional shooters who have experience in Diving as well as having much better housings and lighting systems.
At 10 meters everything will be just blue, So I decided to go for the shallow water where I could capture more of environmental underwater pictures.

Snorkeling around with a Camera was an experience that I will never forget; everything was new for me and opened an opportunity for nice pictures. Sometimes I use the bubbles exhaled from underneath divers as my composition, sometimes the sun rays to use my landscape experience underwater. I will leave the pictures to tell the rest

Please visit my website http://www.hakemphotography.com
And follow my instagram http://instagram.com/moh_hakem


  1. Excellent beat ! I wish to apprentice while you amend your web site, how can i subscribe for
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  2. Great pics! Man..I need a holiday!
    I love the shot half in the water half out. You captured the nice dichotomy of the desert and the thriving, coral bed quite nicely.

  3. Beautiful pictures! Reminds me I should go for diving again. Love the read sea and it’s incredible underwater world.

  4. One of my favourite cameras was a Nikon L35 AWD. It was blue and gorgeous, making photographs up till 10 m. Absolutely weather tight and with an excellent lens.
    Good to see these beautiful photographs to remind me that.

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