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Tag: zoom lens

Ask David: Why does aperture decrease when zoom increases?

Filed in Tips by on July 21, 2015 3 Comments
Ask David: Why does aperture decrease when zoom increases?

You’re the proud owner of a new lens. It’s a pretty awesome lens, if you do say so yourself. It zooms all the way out to 300mm, and down to 70mm, which means you can use it in a lot of situations – from photographing those birds in your backyard trees to capturing great candid shots of your kids playing on the lawn below them. But you just noticed something about that brand new lens – the aperture doesn’t always stay where you want it to. Why?
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What You Need to Know About Zooming

Filed in Tips by on July 20, 2015 0 Comments
What You Need to Know About Zooming

If your DSLR camera came with a lens, it was probably a “kit” zoom lens. Kit lenses are great for beginners. The ones that come bundled with most DSLRs typically have a very good range of zoom, usually somewhere in the range of 35mm to 70mm. Most hobby photographers don’t need to move much beyond that range of zoom for the majority of what they do with their cameras. But even if you love your kit lens and you never, ever plan to leave it, you do need to know a little bit about how it works and what it is capable of. With that in mind, here is your primer on zoom lenses.
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What You Should Know About Lenses

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What You Should Know About Lenses

Before you bought a DSLR you didn’t really need to know a whole lot about lenses. Your point-and-shoot camera came with a lens already attached, and there really wasn’t anything you could do to change it. You probably knew how much zoom it had, and if you paid attention to the specs you may have also figured out what that meant in millimeters. But if your knowledge didn’t really go any further than that, well, no one can blame you.

Now that you have a DSLR, though, it’s a lot more important to know something about not only the lens that you bought with it, but the other lenses that are available to buy once you decide it’s time to expand your arsenal.

Now as it turns out, there’s a lot to know about lenses. A lot. It’s not just a matter of wide-angle vs. telephoto, there are a lot of other things to take into consideration as well. But let’s start with the basic stuff, and that’s lens classes.
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Ask David : Should I Purchase a 16-270mm lens?

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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 Photograph the Moon

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How to Photograph the Moon

OK, raise your hand if this has happened to you. You’re sitting around on your deck or maybe you’re inside doing something, and suddenly you notice through the trees or through your front window that the moon has just come up, and it’s HUGE. The scenery around the moon is picturesque–maybe it’s beautiful trees still lit by the last light from the sunset. Or maybe it’s the skyline of the city where you live. Wow, you think, that would make an awesome picture. You grab your DSLR and go outside to find the perfect vantage point. You frame your shot, take the picture, and viola! A tiny, featureless, glowing ball of overexposed light. Frustrated, you spot meter the moon and adjust your camera’s settings. Now you have a shot where you can actually see a couple of craters, but everything around the moon is pitch black.
Obviously, there’s a secret or two to getting great shots of the moon. I’m going to tell you what they are.
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Photographing Air Shows

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Photographing Air Shows

It’s air show season in the US, and that means hot weather, high-decibel noise and a whole bunch of hazy photos of tiny little specs in the sky.

Air show photography is tough! Unless you’re in an airplane looking down at the performers, it can be difficult to get a great shot at an air show. But don’t worry, you don’t have to leave that camera at home. There are plenty of things you can do to get the most out of your air show visit.
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Understanding Camera Lenses

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Understanding Camera Lenses

Intermediate “One of the many revelations that photographers have is discovering the difference between letting your camera decide how to do something, and telling your camera what to do.” – James Brandon

I love that quote by James Brandon because it speaks to all that I do to inform photographers on how to use their camera to its fullest. Naturally, part of your camera is the lens you use with it. This post is dedicated to helping you determine which lenses are best for you so that you can control the outcome of your images.
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Animal and Wildlife Photography

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Animal and Wildlife Photography

We all have them. Those photos from the family camping trip or from a hike in the woods–you know, when you spotted a deer or a wild turkey and you snapped a photo with your point-and-shoot. And now when you show that photo to your friends and family, you have to tell them what they’re looking at because said deer or wild turkey is a mere spec in the center of the frame.

Wildlife photography is difficult, because wild animals are, believe it or not, even less willing to be photographed than an active toddler or a moody teenager. So what can you do to turn that little spec in the frame into a photo that any National Geographic photographer would be proud of?
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What is a Prime Lens? Why use one?

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What is a Prime Lens? Why use one?

If you own a digital SLR camera, or are thinking of purchasing one, you may have heard of prime lenses. Unlike zoom lenses, prime lenses don’t allow you to zoom in or out while taking pictures. This has led many to wonder what they’re good for. If they do less, why purchase one? I’d like to take a few moments to clear up some of the confusion surrounding prime lenses.
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Ask David: White Balance, RAW images, Slow shutter speeds and Lenses

Ask David: White Balance, RAW images, Slow shutter speeds and Lenses

In my Ask David column, I answer common questions from my readers. By answering them here, I hope to help everyone else who might have this problem, and not just the person who asked the question.

Today, we cover White Balance, RAW images, slow shutter speeds and a few questions on lenses.
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Do you have to zoom in while taking a portrait or landscape photo?

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Do you have to zoom in while taking a portrait or landscape photo?

I get this question a lot. And you know what, it makes a lot of sense. I think people are pressured into purchasing a higher priced digital SLR (that most of them don’t need) because they’re under the impression that you need to have a really expensive zoom lens to take a nice looking portrait or landscape. Nothing could be further from the truth, and in this article, you’ll learn why.
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Knowing your limits as a photographer

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Knowing your limits as a photographer

As a general rule, you’re used to me being the ever-optimistic “go for it” guy who tells you that you don’t need to best camera setup to take great photos. And, for the most part, this is totally true. There are a lot of cases where you don’t need the fanciest setup, just a knowledge of what works and what doesn’t, in order to get your shot. Wielding a scratched up point-and-shoot someone was about to toss in trash, you can still get a decent image.
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Clutter Robs Your Photos Of Impact

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Clutter Robs Your Photos Of Impact

If only there weren’t so much extra “stuff” in the world. Clutter is everywhere. It’s in your room. It’s out on the street. It’s the extra wine glasses you left on the counter because you were too tired to put everything away before going to bed. Clutter kills photos by drawing the eye away from what’s most important -your subject. Here’s what you can do to keep your shots clutter free for good.
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How To Take Stunning Pictures Of The (Super) Moon

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How To Take Stunning Pictures Of The (Super) Moon

The moon is beautiful to look at, but it sure can be challenging to photograph. Here is what you need to know to get the best possible pictures of the moon.
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How to find a lens that’s perfect for your photographic needs

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How to find a lens that’s perfect for your photographic needs

If you own a digital SLR, you know there are a lot of lenses on the market, and most of them are definitely outside most people’s price range. Purchasing the wrong one can be a costly mistake. While no lens will ever do everything you want it to do for you, you can get yourself a small kit with a few lenses to cover all of the important bases. Where you go from there is up to you and where you want to take yourself as a photographer.
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