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Archive for December, 2016

Gifts for photographers – My 2016 guide

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Gifts for photographers – My 2016 guide

If you’re not a photographer yourself, you might dread the whole idea of holiday shopping for the photographically – inclined. After all, cameras and gear are big-ticket items, and unless you never have a cash-flow problem or the photographer in question is someone you just love to spend a lot of money on, you probably try to steer clear of photography-related gifts. If that’s you (or if that’s someone who buys gifts for you every holiday season), here’s a list of gift ideas that should fit any budget, from $50+ to $10 and under.
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How to Capture Moody Photographs

How to Capture Moody Photographs

Photographers spend a pretty large part of the learning stages trying to master the art of the perfectly exposed photo. A perfectly exposed photo, as they would have you believe, has a classic bell curve-shaped histogram that rises in the middle and tapers off gradually towards the highlight side and the shadow side. Now don’t get me wrong, I am in no way disparaging that classic histogram or the perfect exposure that goes along with it. But we should be questioning that word “perfect,” because perfect is nearly always in the eye of the beholder. And while there is a lot to be said for mastering that classically “perfect” exposure, you should not underestimate the power of also mastering the moody exposure. Read on to find out how. Continue Reading »

Colors That Pop

Colors That Pop

Just about everyone who takes photos has heard the expression “colors that pop.” But what does that mean, exactly? What’s the difference between a color that “pops” and one that fizzles? Read on to find out. Continue Reading »

Photo Effects: Distortion

Photo Effects: Distortion

We tend to think of our cameras as tools for capturing reality. When you take a photo, it’s like a two dimensional copy of the real world, with everything reproduced more or less accurately. But if you’ve spent any time really studying the photos you take and comparing them to the real world, you’ll see that this is not always the case. Variations in focal length, camera angle and in your lenses themselves can produce subtle—and not so subtle—distortions of the reality you thought you were accurately reproducing. Is this a bad thing? Not necessarily. Read on to find out why. Continue Reading »

When to Use a Wide Aperture

When to Use a Wide Aperture

Aperture is one of the three settings that make up “the exposure triangle.” Along with shutter speed, your aperture essentially controls how much light reaches your image sensor. Your image sensor, in turn, is responsible for forming the image, which is then saved to your memory card.

Because aperture is one of the three settings that you can use to control exposure, it may not be immediately clear why it might make a difference whether you choose a large aperture or a small one, just so long as you’re getting the correct exposure. But while getting good exposure should be one of your primary goals as a photographer, it doesn’t address things that you can do creatively to change your results. So with that in mind, here are a few situations where you might need a large aperture—both from a practical standpoint and from a creative one. Continue Reading »

Creative Pet Portraits

Creative Pet Portraits

If you’re like most pet-owning photographers, you have close to a billion photographs of your favorite dog or cat. Well maybe not a billion exactly, but let’s face it, your pet might actually be the most photographed pet in all the world. You’ve got pictures of him sleeping, you’ve got pictures of him sitting, you’ve got pictures of him standing around and you’ve got pictures of him just being generally adorable. But unless you’ve really spent some time thinking creatively about all the different ways you might be able to photograph him, the chances are you don’t have many images that have that real “wow” factor, or the ability to really impress someone who doesn’t already know your pet well. In this article, I’m going to let you in on some secrets for fun and unusual pet portraits that aren’t like anything you have in your current photo album. Read on to find out more. Continue Reading »