Snoot? whats that?
Underwater photography goes through trends but some of these trends stick because they survive the test of time and become a genuinely useful additional tool to add to your underwater photography skill set.
One such trend is underwater photographers using snoots. So we will look at what a snoot is, and then what it does.
What is a snoot?
A snoot is a device that attaches to a light source , in most instances a strobe or flashlight. It allows you to narrow the beam of light down to a much smaller area, creating a spotlight in effect. They come in various shapes and sizes of outlet hole, to vary the size of the spot of light. They are commercially available, for most models of underwater strobe. And are usually made by small third party manufacturers. They have been available for many years for on land photographers, but are a relative newcomer on the underwater photography scene.
Here are a couple of examples, yes the first one is a flexible snoot to allow you to point a very small beam in all sorts of directions. The second is one I made from the cut off top of a 1.5L water bottle. I then covered it with tinfoil and tape, to prevent light loss from anywhere other than the bottle top end. I just pushed it onto the strobe head and secured it with a bit of tape.
Why use it?
A snoot allows you to narrow the area of illumination to a small area of the shot, therefore you can focus the viewers attention on just that small area like with this below. I took this with the flexible snoots very narrow beam.
And this with the home made wider angle beamed snoot, under the jetty at Maluku Divers.