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Tag: depth of field

Pros and Cons of Extension Tubes

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Pros and Cons of Extension Tubes

Do you want to take extreme close-ups? Whether it is flowers, insects, coins, or any other variety of things, how can you get closer focus than your lens alone allows? I have discussed other aspects of macro photography in previous articles. This photography niche is fun to explore but is very expensive if you purchase a macro lens. There are other options like using a close up lens or lens reversal tricks, but there is also a simple addition to your camera equipment called an extension tube. Read on for the pros and cons of this option.
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How To Do It: Blurred Backgrounds

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How To Do It: Blurred Backgrounds

You see it all the time in professional photographs; amazing portraits with the subject in front of a soft, blurred background. That beautiful baby or gorgeous model immediately draws your eye. How do they do that? Do you need years of training and top of the line equipment to make this happen? Definitely not! You do not need to be an expert or have an expensive lens to achieve this look. This is one of the easiest things you can try to add a new dimension to your photography. A little knowledge, your DSLR, and a kit lens are all that is required. I will describe simple adjustments you can make today to get that out-of-focus background and add artistic flair to your photos.
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Breaking the Rules: Break The Small Aperture Rule

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Breaking the Rules: Break The Small Aperture Rule

The fundamental rules of photography have great wisdom to offer. Landscapes require great depth of field. Portraits require less depth of field. You should always follow the rule of thirds, except when it’s ok not to. You can’t use fast shutter speeds at night and you can’t use slow shutter speeds during the day.

But you and I both know that just about every one of those fundamental wisdoms can sometimes be ignored. All you really need to know is when and how. That’s why I’m bringing you this series on breaking the rules.
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How Changing Aperture Changes Other Settings

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How Changing Aperture Changes Other Settings

Your camera has three primary settings that are interconnected: aperture, shutter speed and ISO. You can’t adjust one without adjusting the other, because each one is fundamental to the way your camera captures light, which is ultimately what it uses to make an exposure. Smaller apertures mean slower shutter speeds, or higher ISOs. Larger apertures mean faster shutter speeds, or lower ISOs. So how do you work out what settings to use?
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How Shutter Speed Affects Your Photos

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How Shutter Speed Affects Your Photos

Now that you’ve got a pretty good handle on your camera’s scene modes, you’re also starting to develop an understanding of the basic principles of photography – the ones that are going to take you from the land of snapshots to the land of technical excellence. You’ve already seen these principles in action, now it’s just time to define them and look at how you can fine tune them to create the images you want.
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Beautiful Bokeh

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Beautiful Bokeh

Whether you realize it or not, you have seen bokeh plenty of times. It is there in any photograph with a shallow depth of field. In its simplest form, bokeh is just blur. That great portrait shot you take with the blurry background? The background is called bokeh. Whether the bokeh is “good” or “bad”, and if it adds to the artistry of the photo is a matter of opinion. There are several key factors in creating what many consider beautiful bokeh – those areas of pleasant, soft focus. Read on to learn about the “qualities” of bokeh, how to create it, and some creative composition techniques that utilize it.
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How To Choose an Aperture to Control Depth of Field

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How To Choose an Aperture to Control Depth of Field

If you own a camera, you’ve probably at least heard the term “aperture.” But your understanding of what that means may depend a lot on what kind of camera you own, and how you use it. Today, I’ll explain exactly how the aperture setting affects your images, and what aperture settings to use in which situations.
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Breathtaking Bridge Photos

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Breathtaking Bridge Photos

Whether you live in a big city or a rural area, there is bound to be a bridge nearby you could photograph. You may not live near one of those awe inspiring, famous bridges but almost any bridge has visual interest that is photograph worthy. If you are looking for new material, consider taking a drive to find a bridge. There is no “right” way to photograph a bridge, but there are definitely things to consider in terms of equipment, lighting, and composition. Read on for tips on breathtaking bridge photos.
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16 Tips for Better Landscapes

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16 Tips for Better Landscapes

To the snap-shooter, nothing could be simpler than a landscape. Just find some pretty scenery, lift your camera and press the button. Viola! Landscape.

Now if you’re not a mere snap-shooter, you know the absolute folly of what I just said. While it’s true that it’s easy to shoot a landscape, it is also extremely difficult to capture one. What I mean of course is that anyone can lift a camera and press the button, and because landscapes don’t move it seems as if capturing one should be as easy as that. But you and I both know that recreating a beautiful, three-dimensional scene in a two dimensional medium is much more difficult than just hitting that shutter button. Let’s see how to do it…
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10 Tips to Finding the Perfect Background

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10 Tips to Finding the Perfect Background

Unless you’re a professional portrait photographer, you probably don’t have backdrops for shooting portraits. That’s okay, because there are a lot of ways to exclude or include backgrounds that best enhance your portraits. From blurring the background to finding an appropriate one and more, I’ve got Ten Tips that you can use the next time you’re photographing someone, whether it’s a more formal portrait or a candid shot. The first few speak to post-processing, while the rest are tricks you can use in the field.
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Capturing Compelling Forest Photos

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Capturing Compelling Forest Photos

Line is one of those compositional elements that can really make a photograph. That’s why it’s one of the six classic design elements – line can create emotion and a sense of depth. It can be the difference between a good photo and a great one.

That’s why a well-composed shot of a forest is almost always going to be a great photo. There are lines everywhere in a forest, particularly vertical lines. Vertical lines convey as sense of power and strength. They can give your viewer a sense of spirituality, majesty, wonder and infinite height. If you’re looking for a subject that can convey emotion even without the presence of human beings, this is the one.
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Taking Zoo Photographs That Don’t Look Like They Were Taken at the Zoo

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Taking Zoo Photographs That Don’t Look Like They Were Taken at the Zoo

Every photographer is planning to go on an African safari some day, even those of us who know we’re probably never going to go on an African safari. But dreaming is fun, and if you don’t really think you’re going to ever get out there in that zebra striped jeep chasing elephants and watching lions take down wildebeests, there’s a next-best thing. That’s right! It’s your local zoo. And if you play it right, your photos might look as if you actually went out on safari.
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Photographing Mushrooms

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Photographing Mushrooms

“Fungal photography.” That’s like viral photography, right? Only slower moving and … itchier. Actually, no. “Fungal photography” is the quite literal term used to describe what for many people is a passion – photographing mushrooms. You won’t find much glamour in this little corner of the photography world. Mushroom photography can be dirty – like a growing in dung kind of dirty – and since mushrooms prefer damp, cool places seeking them out can sometimes be a miserable endeavor. But viewed through a camera lens when the light is just right, a mushroom can have beauty that goes far beyond those still-dirty button mushrooms and portobellos you find in your supermarket. Finding and shooting mushrooms can be a great challenge both physically and artistically, which, of course, is why you should do it.
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Boost Your Landscape Photography With These Tricks

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Boost Your Landscape Photography With These Tricks

Scenic photos are a part of almost every photographer’s repertoire. After all, almost no one with a camera can resist snapping a photo of crashing surf, sweeping fields of wildflowers or a towering, snow-covered mountain.

Landscape photos seem like they should be easy, yet the final images are often disappointing. How many times have you taken a photo of a stunningly beautiful place only to discover that the image you end up with is nothing short of underwhelming? Let’s fix that!
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Visual Design: Finding Form in Photography

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Visual Design: Finding Form in Photography

If you’ve ever studied art, you probably have at least some understanding of form. It’s one of the six classic design elements, and knowing how to use it will help you take photographs that have a creative edge and an artistic quality that greatly exceeds the common snapshot. Form is very similar to its cousin, shape, and it is important to understand the difference between the two, so you can start to develop an eye for how to use both elements to your advantage.
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