• Store
    • Cathy's Book

      Cathy Church's favorite underwater photos from her journey (up to 2003) from the Caribbean to the South Pacific, from the surface to 150' deep, all gathered into this beautiful coffee table book.

      FREE ON-LINE PHOTO LESSONS!!!

    • Warranty and Returns

       

       Cathy Church store warranty and returns policy IMPORTANT 30 DAY SUPPLEMENTAL WARRANTY INFORMATION

       

       

  • Printing & Digital Servicing
    • Kiosk

      Self-Service Printing and Scanning

       

      Make prints from your digital media - phone, CD, thumb drive or memory card.

       

      Make calendars or holiday cards, add text and borders, crop and adjust.

       

    • Copying Art

      Share and sell your paintings and other art work over and over.

      We can make that happen with our wonderful reproduction and Giclee printing on canvas, watercolor or photo lustre paper. Our prints maintain the look and feel of your original. Or, you can direct us on how you would like it changed. What a great freedom to be able to change an oil painting that has that one little flaw you wished you had fixed. With digital printing, it is easy to make changes.

  • Wedding & Events
    • Cayman Photographers

      Cayman Photographers is part of Cathy Church’s Photo Centre. We have been the photo and video experts in the Cayman Islands since 1972. Let us help you capture your special moments in your own personal way. 

       

    • Cayman Photographers

       

      Cayman Photographers also provides Event Photography, Commercial Photography, Senior Portraits, Beach Portraits, Location Photography, Corporate Photography, Architectural Photography, Baby Bump Portraits, Underwater Photography, Baby and Children's' Photos, Trash the Dress Photography, Trash the Dress Videography, Engagement Photos, Wedding Videography, Event Videos, Press Conference Videography, Commercial Television and Video Production, and Audiovisual Displays throughout Grand Cayman and the Cayman Islands. 

       

  • Classes
    • Private Classes

       Our private, one on one affordable classes at Cathy Church's Photo Centre can help you take your photos and video to the next level.

      Whether you want to learn photography or video, the latest photo or video editing software or advanced techniques like studio lighting, we can customize a lesson for you. Our private instructor, Tony Mark will work with you whether you are a beginner or a pro or somewhere in between.

      If you have a pocket compact camera or the latest in DSLR's or even high end video equipment, we can help you get the most from your camera. Tony's personal hands on method will have you learning skills in no time and utilizing new technology to make your photos and videos look amazing.

      If video is your passion, let him teach you some of his tricks that earned him an Emmy in 2006 for film editing. Tony uses a MAC and can teach you such programs as Final Cut Pro X, iMovie, Aperture, iPhoto and PhotoShop.

      FUN EVENING CLASSES!

      Learning the basics with your compact or SLR camera!

      An intermediate class on becoming a better photographer

       

  • About Cathy
    • Cathy's Awards 

      Cathy has received many honors for her teaching and photography

      from 1971!

       

    • Articles

      Here are some recent articles by Cathy and About Cathy

       

  • Environmental Issues
    • Environmental Issues

       


      Grand Cayman is proposing the construction of a new cruise berthing facility that would totally remove the lovely wreck of the Balboa, one of my long time favorite places for teaching underwater photography. The dredging would also directly impact Soto’s Reef and Eden Rock — annual home to the incredible masses of silversides and tarpon. Silt from the dredging operations would expand for months as far as Sunset House where I teach and dive and could possibly smother and kill it.

       

       

      All of the environmental impact assessment clearly points all of this out, and also details the type of economic improvement for the island.

      We have formed a protest group called SaveCayman.org which points out the fallacy of destroying the very reefs that are the most popular for our cruise ship customers, etc. etc. and the severe economic fallout from so much environmental destruction as well as crowds, traffic, noise, and so on ad infinitum. 

  • About us
    • Location

      Grand Cayman, KY1-1106, CAYMAN ISLANDS 390 South Church Street

    • Employment Opportunities

      We occasionally need to look for a retail assistant or an underwater photo instructor

      Camera sales assistant:

      We are currently fully staffed, but we are always on the lookout ........

      Underwater Photo instructor:

      We have a great team here at the photo centre, and we sometimes need another.......

  • Contact us
    • Contact us

       

      How to Contact Us:

      Cathy Church's Photo Centre and Gallery

      P.O. Box 479, Grand Cayman, KY1-1106, CAYMAN ISLANDS

      390 South Church Street, at the Sunset House Hotel

      EMAIL: click here

      Calling from within Cayman (345)-949-7415

      Calling from the US (607)-330-3504 connects directly with our Cayman office

      Fax from within the Cayman Islands: 345-949-9770

      Business Hours: Mon-Sat: 9:00 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Sun and Public Holidays: closed

       

       

  • Store
    • Cathy's Book

      Cathy Church's favorite underwater photos from her journey (up to 2003) from the Caribbean to the South Pacific, from the surface to 150' deep, all gathered into this beautiful coffee table book.

      FREE ON-LINE PHOTO LESSONS!!!

    • Warranty and Returns

       

       Cathy Church store warranty and returns policy IMPORTANT 30 DAY SUPPLEMENTAL WARRANTY INFORMATION

       

       

  • Printing & Digital Servicing
    • Kiosk

      Self-Service Printing and Scanning

       

      Make prints from your digital media - phone, CD, thumb drive or memory card.

       

      Make calendars or holiday cards, add text and borders, crop and adjust.

       

    • Copying Art

      Share and sell your paintings and other art work over and over.

      We can make that happen with our wonderful reproduction and Giclee printing on canvas, watercolor or photo lustre paper. Our prints maintain the look and feel of your original. Or, you can direct us on how you would like it changed. What a great freedom to be able to change an oil painting that has that one little flaw you wished you had fixed. With digital printing, it is easy to make changes.

  • Wedding & Events
    • Cayman Photographers

      Cayman Photographers is part of Cathy Church’s Photo Centre. We have been the photo and video experts in the Cayman Islands since 1972. Let us help you capture your special moments in your own personal way. 

       

    • Cayman Photographers

       

      Cayman Photographers also provides Event Photography, Commercial Photography, Senior Portraits, Beach Portraits, Location Photography, Corporate Photography, Architectural Photography, Baby Bump Portraits, Underwater Photography, Baby and Children's' Photos, Trash the Dress Photography, Trash the Dress Videography, Engagement Photos, Wedding Videography, Event Videos, Press Conference Videography, Commercial Television and Video Production, and Audiovisual Displays throughout Grand Cayman and the Cayman Islands. 

       

  • Classes
    • Private Classes

       Our private, one on one affordable classes at Cathy Church's Photo Centre can help you take your photos and video to the next level.

      Whether you want to learn photography or video, the latest photo or video editing software or advanced techniques like studio lighting, we can customize a lesson for you. Our private instructor, Tony Mark will work with you whether you are a beginner or a pro or somewhere in between.

      If you have a pocket compact camera or the latest in DSLR's or even high end video equipment, we can help you get the most from your camera. Tony's personal hands on method will have you learning skills in no time and utilizing new technology to make your photos and videos look amazing.

      If video is your passion, let him teach you some of his tricks that earned him an Emmy in 2006 for film editing. Tony uses a MAC and can teach you such programs as Final Cut Pro X, iMovie, Aperture, iPhoto and PhotoShop.

      FUN EVENING CLASSES!

      Learning the basics with your compact or SLR camera!

      An intermediate class on becoming a better photographer

       

  • About Cathy
    • Cathy's Awards 

      Cathy has received many honors for her teaching and photography

      from 1971!

       

    • Articles

      Here are some recent articles by Cathy and About Cathy

       

  • Environmental Issues
    • Environmental Issues

       


      Grand Cayman is proposing the construction of a new cruise berthing facility that would totally remove the lovely wreck of the Balboa, one of my long time favorite places for teaching underwater photography. The dredging would also directly impact Soto’s Reef and Eden Rock — annual home to the incredible masses of silversides and tarpon. Silt from the dredging operations would expand for months as far as Sunset House where I teach and dive and could possibly smother and kill it.

       

       

      All of the environmental impact assessment clearly points all of this out, and also details the type of economic improvement for the island.

      We have formed a protest group called SaveCayman.org which points out the fallacy of destroying the very reefs that are the most popular for our cruise ship customers, etc. etc. and the severe economic fallout from so much environmental destruction as well as crowds, traffic, noise, and so on ad infinitum. 

  • About us
    • Location

      Grand Cayman, KY1-1106, CAYMAN ISLANDS 390 South Church Street

    • Employment Opportunities

      We occasionally need to look for a retail assistant or an underwater photo instructor

      Camera sales assistant:

      We are currently fully staffed, but we are always on the lookout ........

      Underwater Photo instructor:

      We have a great team here at the photo centre, and we sometimes need another.......

  • Contact us
    • Contact us

       

      How to Contact Us:

      Cathy Church's Photo Centre and Gallery

      P.O. Box 479, Grand Cayman, KY1-1106, CAYMAN ISLANDS

      390 South Church Street, at the Sunset House Hotel

      EMAIL: click here

      Calling from within Cayman (345)-949-7415

      Calling from the US (607)-330-3504 connects directly with our Cayman office

      Fax from within the Cayman Islands: 345-949-9770

      Business Hours: Mon-Sat: 9:00 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Sun and Public Holidays: closed

       

       

FAQs - Frequently Asked Questions About Underwater Photography and Cathy Church

6. How do I get started in U/W photography? How do I become a professional?

Start by taking any combination of courses and private lessons that we offer at the photo centre. To become a professional you will need to find a way to be able to take a lot of photos underwater. Several of today's professionals started by working as divemasters, photo pros at diving resorts or as boat captains. Read everything that you can find about underwater photography. Don't believe it all (some is actually wrong or misleading) so experiment and find what works best for you. Be ready to work really hard. Read about how Norbert Wu stays under the ice an extra twenty minutes (while every one else got way too cold and went up) so that he can get that terrific photo, or how I hire four staff to work on a complex photo that I can't do alone. The easy photos have been done and are everywhere. Look for ways that you can do something that no one else is doing. And don't think it's all been done! People have thought that since time began but we still keep creating something new. If you can visualize what you want to become, then you can do it. It doesn't matter what you are doing now, or how old you are; if you want to, then do it. Keep in mind that there is relatively little money in underwater photography, so you should have a variety of ways that you can earn an income. Obvious ways are to sell photo equipment, teach photography, run a dive shop and dive tour business, be independently wealthy from selling your computer business or marrying someone with a real job. Regardless of how much you want to become a pro, you must NEVER give the picture away just for a photo credit. If every beginner gave their photos away, there would not be a decent market for anyone to sell their photos. That is partially why the market is presently so poor for underwater photography. I am constantly asked for FREE photos for advertising brochures for the Cayman Islands. I know that when I turn them down, they will turn elsewhere and get photos for free. If they couldn't get free ones, they would realize that they should budget properly for photography and we (especially beginners) would all benefit. Good luck with your dreams. Remember, that for every subject that you have ever seen, the best photo of it has yet to be taken.

 

5. Do you sell equipment?

In our photo centre in Grand Cayman we sell everything that Cathy recommends. Check out our camera section here. Don't be surprised when you find that our prices are competitive, usually even lower than NY prices, and when you pick up your gear here during your Cayman visit, there are no taxes, no duties, no shipping and you do get FREE instruction. Many people inquire whether or not we sell used equipment or if we take used camera systems for trade. We do on rare occasion sell off a used camera system or strobe that has been in our rental pool, but these are quickly snatched up by divers who live here in Grand Cayman. As to trade-ins, the answer is no. It's such a challenge to stay current with the NEW cameras; the digital camera market has an extremely rapid turnover rate, and about the time we have received (finally) a housing for a specific camera, then the manufacturer has just announced its replacement. Anyone interested in selling their old equipment should check out eBay, scuba diving boards, etc.

 

4. Which camera (or strobe) should I buy?

It is impossible to give you a quick answer on what type of camera or strobe to buy. As with most photo equipment, you often get more when you pay more, so determine your budget and buy within that budget. We carry systems from as low as $500.00 to as much as $18,000.00. Strobes vary from around $350 to $900. Our favorite right now is the Sea and Sea YS-D1. I like small, lightweight strobes that just take simple AA batteries rather than a proprietary battery that cannot be replaced in places like Indonesia. I like them small so that I can work in tight places. I rarely need higher power as I prefer to work close to my subject for better color and contrast. Large, high-power strobes are heavier in my baggage, get in the way underwater, and although they provide a faster recycle time when used on low power, so do my small strobes when I work in close. Be careful in choosing a housing -- what may seem like a small disadvantage can be a major obstacle to getting the photo underwater. For example, some camera/housing combinations require two controls to change the f-stop, making it impossible to change f-stops while looking through the viewfinder. Others require a long, awkward reach to get to the f-stop. The best way to properly answer your questions would be with your own private instruction with Cathy or her wonderful staff in Grand Cayman. Here you can actually handle the camera system before making a major investment decision. During the course we can discuss the advantages and disadvantages as they relate to your, not MY needs, or the needs of anyone else. YOU have to set the conditions that you need filled and no one can shortcut that answer. Check the next question below to see why you should buy your camera gear from us when you are in Grand Cayman.

 

3. What are the advantages and disadvantages of a housed compact digital camera versus an SLR underwater?

Advantages of a compact digital camera system compared to an SLR:

  • Compact digitals cost much less. Complete systems can cost as little as $2075.00. An equivalent SLR that can do small macro and wide angle will require multiple lenses with gears and ports and can start around $4700.00 just for the housing and cost well over $10,000.00 to $18,000.00 for a complete Nikon system with strobes, lenses and ports.

  • Compact digitals are smaller and easier to travel with.

  • They are more versatile in the water -- a good system allows you to shoot from infinity to as close as just a few inches away. Many also allow you to add a wide angle lens underwater to shoot large subjects on the same dive. With SLR cameras, once you choose a lens, you are limited to shooting within the range of that one lens for the dive.

  • They are easier to handle. By holding the camera out in front of you, you can see your subject, and you can see your surroundings while you shoot. With the SLR, you must keep your eye to the viewfinder while trying to find the subject and adjust your position on the reef.

Disadvantages of a compact digital camera system compared to an SLR:

  • It is slower to focus so there is a longer delay in taking the photo. This can be a major problem when shooting moving subjects such as fish. The SLRs focus so fast that you can often take the picture virtually right away.

  • The LCD screen on the back of the compact digital may be hard to see in some lighting conditions. You can always see clearly through an SLR viewfinder (providing you have a reasonable housing). In certain conditions it is hard to distinguish subject details in the LCD screen. With an SLR viewfinder, your entire eye is involved in the visual image in the viewfinder so you are more likely to see the proper focus, composition and details.

 

2. When will Cathy be in Cayman?

To find out when Cathy will be in Grand Cayman, check our calendar page under the button "Cathy's Page". Some dates will appear longer than the actual event dates as we frequently add a few days before and after trips to the US to visit friends and shop.

 

1. Questions to ask when buying a digital Camera.

Go to photo tips for more information on selecting a digital camera. If you have not done so already, sign up for the email bulletin, as I send out tips as I get them written.

Revised February 9, 2012

Jasmin, Herb, Cathy and Sparky

The TG4 is Cathy's Point-and-Shoot recommendation!

 TG4 is waterproof to 50 feet without a housing, and 130 feet with the housing. This new model also shoots in RAW!