Author: Lilian Koh

lilian kohADEX 2016 Underwater Photo Contest • 3rd Place in Macro category
Ocean ART Competition 2016 • 2nd place in Mirrorless Macro category
Annual Awards 2016/2017
• Runner-up in Macro - Close-up category
Dragon Cup Shootout 2017 • 2nd place in Creative category
MIDE Lens Beyond Ocean 2017 • 1st place in Portfolio category

I started diving in 2000 after a close encounter while snorkelling with manta rays,and continued to explore the wonders of the ocean after my certification,My passion for scuba diving deepens when I took up underwater photography.

The ocean reveals its secrets,a little at a time,constantly luring you back,wanting more,Always fascinated by small critters, hence my love for macro photography.


Check out my social media on Facebook and Instagram

After shooting macro photography for some time,decided to venture into a different technique,When I first bought my Retra LSD,it looks pretty daunting and difficult to use,However, after a trip based solely on snoot photography,I was hooked and eager to explore more ideas and develop ways to snoot differently.



A snoot is a useful additional tool to add to your skill set,It is great for creating artistic photos and the ability to control your lighting,Helps to eliminate backscatter and easier to create a black background to allow your subject to stand out from a distracting background.


This is the most common way of snooting,It creates a spotlight effect by positioning from the top,Once focal distance and snoot position aligned, you will be able to adjust camera settings and light intensity to your liking,From there, it’s easy to shoot even if your subject moves,Each time you re-compose your shots and change in focal distance, make minute adjustments to your snoot accordingly.


Same spotlight technique as the image above,However, if you lower your camera and shoot it in a different angle and making use of the ground terrain,it gives a wave effect rather than a perfect circular effect,Do not be afraid to move your snoot and try different angles and positions,The lights cast will produce different results, even if shooting the same subject.



Precision shooting requires a lot of patience,Not only you have to take its environment into considerations,you have to make sure the selection is accurately and properly lit. It is really challenging and a great way to train your patience.






Double snoots. Sounds scary for some,but once you have mastered shooting with one snoot,adding another snoot will allow you to explore and make room for creativity.

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Found this moray eel under a big barrel sponge coral,its location makes it tough for strobes to reach,The beauty of Retra LSD is you can position in awkward situations and less intruding to the subject. The lights did not deter the school of cardinals swimming in front of it and I have to wait for an opportunity to shoot only when they swim out of my frame.


Another advantage is you can snoot from super macro to a much larger subject,like the moray eel.



Light skimming means using the edge of the light to illuminate your subject:This way you will not light up the background. Note: Image above is a series of shots with the same subject combined into 1.



My favourite style of snooting. It doesn’t matter if you are using 1 or 2 snoot,it is about having an idea and make it work. Trips to craft stores helps as you will find materials which can be use underwater. Just let your imagination run wild.


Making use of snoot lighting to tell a story.


Same subject, but tells different story.



Create a double vision using a mirror while snooting


Simple tools like duct tape and a penknife to create different mask shapes


Backlit with colour filters

NEVER give up no matter how hard it is,always BELIEVE you can do it.