The Bigger Picture
I usually prefer the broader story of a wide angle photography but, every so often I find a small fish parked in front of my lens. It is usually not the fish that inspires me but the scene the fish is a part of. The image above depicts not just a trunk fish looking wearily at me but a trunk fish hovering within a rusty old can. The circular pattern of that can frames the fish nicely. Take away the can and you have a mediocre fish portrait.
If you desire to achieve a bigger picture with your photography then search patiently for a subject that is part of an exciting backdrop or what we photographers call "negative space". Whether it is geometric shapes, interesting patterns, brilliant colors or a rusty old can makes no difference as long as it appeals to the visual senses. Whether shooting wide or macro, I suggest looking beyond a single element in your frame and discover a wider view of the underwater world. Your images will take on more depth and meaning if you do.
The image highlighted here was taken in Dumaguete, Philippines with Atlantis Resorts; a destination renown for their diverse and abundant macro subjects. After a lengthy search I found this trunk fish within the can and knew right away this would make an interesting photo. Taking the image was not complicated. I made a few test shots to determine exposure and then moved in gingerly being sure to frame the scene properly. I got what I wanted within 5 frames. Very simple. It was passing up sub-standard subjects during the dive and patiently looking for the photo-worthy one that was the hard part.
In closing, what inspires me may not inspire you. Try different things and find what you enjoy and make it part of your style and portfolio. If simple fish portraits is what excites you then don't let anyone tell you otherwise. If you're having fun then nothing else matters.