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Tips

Pointers for the Perfect Self-Portrait

Filed in Tips by on July 17, 2014 0 Comments
Pointers for the Perfect Self-Portrait

Are you guilty of an occasional selfie? Most of us are. It’s true, we are a selfie-obsessed culture but that’s not necessarily a bad thing. Self-portraits have a long history as part of an artist’s journey of self-discovery. They give us a way to try out new techniques, fail in privacy, learn, grow and adapt as photographers. They are also a way to chart how we physically change over time. Here are some items and practices that help me achieve the self-portrait I set out to create.
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Intermediate Night Photography

Filed in Tips by on July 17, 2014 1 Comment
Intermediate Night Photography

If you have dabbled in night photography, you are probably familiar with the unique lighting scenarios and magical images you can capture once the lights are out. You may think of night as a black time, but streetlights, signs, and car headlights add colored light to photos that you do not encounter during the light of day. You can challenge yourself and create beautiful images capturing fluorescent, tungsten, yellow/orange streetlights, or even multi colored neon light sources. There are also natural sources of light in the moon and stars just begging to be photographed. If you have already gone to the dark side and delved into the exciting world of night photography, read on to discover some new tricks to try. Jaw dropping photos await!
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How Important is a Lens Hood?

Filed in Tips by on July 10, 2014 6 Comments
How Important is a Lens Hood?

The lens hood; that ubiquitous, sometimes-cumbersome piece of plastic found at the tip of lenses nowadays. Is it really useful? How important is it anyway? Is it just an aesthetic piece of apparatus that can make your camera look cool? If we better understood the hood’s many uses, then we can begin to realize its value and indispensability. Let’s see just what this gadget is really for:
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Lens Focal Lengths for Common Situations

Filed in Tips by on July 10, 2014 2 Comments
Lens Focal Lengths for Common Situations

Have you ever wondered what lens you should be using to get a shot? What type of photos do you take? Are you all about people and portraits? Do you get in on the sports action? Are you always on the lookout for wildlife? Different photographic situations call for different lenses. If you have only your kit lens, take a moment to feel deprived, and then read on because someday you will likely be in the market for an additional lens. Lenses come in different focal lengths that serve different purposes so read on to understand more about different lenses to use in a variety of common photographic situations.
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Taking Fabulous Photos in a “No Flash” Zone

Filed in Tips by on July 10, 2014 1 Comment
Taking Fabulous Photos in a “No Flash” Zone

In low light situations, the flash is usually your “go to” solution. But what if you can’t use it? You may be in a “no flash” zone in a museum or aquarium, or it may not be socially appropriate for flash usage. Your best friend probably wouldn’t appreciate you flashing away like paparazzi while she says her wedding vows. It is still possible to take a good picture in low light conditions without using your flash. It requires a bit more work on your part, but you will likely be pleased with the result. Flashes create unflattering light, flatten digital images, and cause reflections off glass display cases so it may not be the best solution anyway.
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Dazzling Fireworks Photography

Filed in Tips by on July 3, 2014 7 Comments
Dazzling Fireworks Photography

Fireworks are fantastic to see in photos but are hard to shoot well. However, there are a number of techniques that can allow you to take some spectacular shots of fireworks. In this video, I’ll show you the techniques you can use to take some dazzling fireworks photos.
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Ask David: Should I purchase an off-brand lens for my camera?

Filed in Tips by on July 3, 2014 0 Comments
Ask David: Should I purchase an off-brand lens for my camera?

Off brand, or third-party lenses, have both perks and pitfalls. Some photographers will swear by third-party lenses, while others swear they are not as sharp or reliable as a proprietary lens. The first and probably the most important advantage of an off brand lens is the price. Quite often, third-party gear companies make lenses that are similar in capability to those produced by major camera companies at a fraction of the cost, especially when you get into higher end or more specialized lenses. For example, a Canon 24-105mm f/4L USM lens retails for about $1100, while a very similar lens by Sigma retails for $899.
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Ask David : Should I Purchase a 16-270mm lens?

Filed in Tips by on July 3, 2014 8 Comments
Ask David : Should I Purchase a 16-270mm lens?

I was recently asked this question: “I have a 18-55 mm and 75-300 mm lens. I am considering buying a 16-270 mm. Is this a good idea?”

My first instinct is to say no. Between the two zoom lenses you already have, you cover pretty much all of the ground a 16-270mm lens is capable of perusing plus some. Also, as a rule of thumb, a range with a longer lens (ie 16-260mm) is not normally going to produce the same quality as a lens with a shorter zoom range (ie 18-55) or a prime lens.

I would look into lenses that cover ground my current gear doesn’t but ultimately, it truly depends on the type of photography you shoot the most. Let me explain.
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How to Create the Perfect Silhouette

Filed in Tips by on July 3, 2014 0 Comments
How to Create the Perfect Silhouette

Have you ever seen a silhouette of two people embracing each other on the beach and wondered how to translate it into a beautiful image? The romance of a silhouette is rarely matched. They are timeless and mysterious. These iconic images use the shape of a person, item or structure, devoid of details to create a simple but emotional photograph. Despite their simple structure, there are some technical and artistic techniques you can use to make the process easier and the end result better.
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Why Do Cloudy Day Photos Seem Flat?

Filed in Tips by on June 27, 2014 0 Comments
Why Do Cloudy Day Photos Seem Flat?

If you’re like most beginners in photography, taking photos on a cloudy day is almost often a challenge. It seems no matter how much you try and how often you hear well-meaning advice from professionals, the tips don’t seem to work. The photos you take almost always come out darn flat! What could be wrong?

First you’ll need to understand some fundamental aspects of lighting and their visual relationship to the subjects of the photos you take. Hopefully these will explain why cloudy day photos seem to be flat.
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Your Next Tripod: The 8 Most Important Features

Filed in Tips by on June 27, 2014 4 Comments
Your Next Tripod: The 8 Most Important Features

Tripods are used for a menagerie of photographic purposes. Projects like self-portraits, extended exposure work, and low-light situations are just a few genres that require a tripod because it adds the necessary stability that just can’t be matched by hand holding your camera. Because of their importance, it’s vital to know what to look for before making an investment in a tripod that can’t meet your needs. Here are some things to think about before you take the plunge.
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Zoom Blur Effect In Camera

Filed in Tips by on June 27, 2014 1 Comment
Zoom Blur Effect In Camera

Tired of the same old shots? Want to add a cool effect without any post processing? Zoom blur may be just the ticket. With just your DSLR and a kit lens, you can take some creative photos that break the traditional mold. Use this fun technique to produce unique results and enhance your portfolio. Zoom on!
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Basics: What is RAW and how does it help Photographers?

Filed in Tips by on June 20, 2014 10 Comments
Basics: What is RAW and how does it help Photographers?

Does your camera have a RAW file format selection in its Image Quality option? Chances are it has one, but most of the time this gets ignored in favor of the JPEGs. After all, we are more familiar with the JPEG options, right? So in this article we are going to dive in and learn about this image file format and see how it can benefit us in our photography.
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Taking Beautiful Tree Photographs

Filed in Tips by on June 20, 2014 3 Comments
Taking Beautiful Tree Photographs

Trees are one of those subjects in nature that change with the seasons and time of day, providing endless opportunities for fresh compositions. Trees have layers of texture and color that make them ideal for photographs. You can go wide to capture the big picture or get up close to focus on the fine details. Trees don’t move so they must be easy to photograph, right? Well, not quite. It turns out trees often look flat and boring when photographed. If you want to really capture the essence and beauty of trees you need to also be aware of lighting and composition. Read on to see some beautiful tree photos and take note of what works in the images.
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8 Accessories Every Photographer Needs

Filed in Tips by on June 20, 2014 8 Comments
8 Accessories Every Photographer Needs

Technically, to be a photographer, you just need a camera but there are a few gadgets that will make your photography life exponentially easier and many of them cost less than a few dollars. Here is my list of the eight accessories every photographer needs:
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