As an ocean underwater portrait photographer, I thought I would give you some suggestions on what to wear for your underwater photo session. If you have already booked a session with me, you will also receive my Underwater Photography Tips Guide with even more tips for your session.
1. Keep it simple and comfortable.
Swimwear is my number one recommendation, but if you fancy something different, I’m here for it. If it’s comfortable on land, it should be comfortable in the water. Make sure you can move around in your outfit. If it’s too loose or too tight, we could have an issue. Practice moving your arms up and down, jumping, and doing some karate kicks before choosing your final outfit. If everything stays in place and still feels comfortable, you have a winner!
2. Keep it light.
If you opt-out of swimwear or prefer to wear something over your swimsuit (like a kimono or a dress), make sure the fabrics are very light and flowy. Flowy also accentuates the movement in the water which can photograph beautifully. You do not want to be caught with heavy fabric underwater. Heavy fabric underwater is like a mop. It will hold all the water and weigh you down. It’s a major safety issue and a big no-no. You could also practice wearing your clothes in the bathtub or a swimming pool to try out your comfort level.
3. Stay away from blues/aqua colors that can easily get lost in the water.
This one is more of a personal preference, but I don’t like photographing blues in clothing that can get lost in the color of the water. If you like the look of floating body parts, then disregard this tip. If its’ a really light or dark blue, or muted it could still work. Every location and lighting situation can be different, so it’s easier to just cancel the blues all together. Contrasting colors, neutral/muted tones, whites and blacks all photograph well. Pretty much any color but blues and fluorescents will work.
4. Stay away from busy patterns.
When shooting an underwater photography session, I want you to be the main focus of your images. Many times, loud patterns and prints can be a distraction to the subject and the natural beauty of the ocean. Smaller patterns or solid colors work well.
5. Fins welcome
f you book with me as your underwater ocean photographer, the first criteria is that you must know how to swim well. If fins make you feel more comfortable to tread water longer, I am not opposed to fins being worn with your swimwear.
In the end, what you wear is up to you. I am down for a tasteful nude session if you would like to ditch the wardrobe altogether (ladies only). I will be here all along the way to guide you into the best options to create a memorable underwater ocean photography experience.