Tag Archive: photography tips

The Most Common Photography Mistakes Every Photographer Should Be Mindful Of

Sometimes in photography, mistakes are made along the way and there is nothing wrong with that. Even professionals get to commit mistakes sometimes. What is important is that we get to identify them and try not to commit these mistakes too often. Here are some mistakes to watch out for in photography.

Blurry Pictures

One of the most common issues amateur photographers encounter is that their images have come out blurry. This is usually because there isn’t enough light reaching the sensor, so the camera struggles to take a sharp image. To remedy this situation, you can use a tripod or a monopod (a must in low light conditions), choose a higher ISO setting for faster shutter speeds or use flash to freeze any movement.

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Too Much Contrast

A photograph with too much contrast has a strong difference between lighter and darker areas of the image. This is very apparent in photographs taken on a sunny day. Use flash to fill in the dark shadowy areas of the image and try underexposing the image by one or two stops to see if it would fix things.

Red-Eye

Although red-eye can easily be corrected with an image editing software, it’s still good to know how to prevent it from occurring. Red-eye appears commonly in light-eyed people when the camera flash reflects off the retinas in their eyes. You can prevent red-eye by avoiding using your camera’s built-in flash whenever possible or use the automatic red-eye reduction mode if available in your camera. Another technique is to have your subject look away from the camera to avoid the reflection in their eyes.

Off-Colors

Off-colors, or color casts are a well known problem in digital photography. In digital imaging we can use the white balance (WB) settings to deal with this problem. Choose “auto” or the proper WB settings for the scenario. For example, an indoor photograph tends to look orange because the incandescent (tungsten) light bulb emits “warm” or orange light. The tungsten setting devised for this scenario will add blue to balance it out.

Subject is Too Far

If your subject is too far away, your photo will not make much impact. If you are unable to physically move closer to the subject, you can use a good quality telephoto zoom lens or we can crop the image later with your image editing software. Remember to shoot the image at the highest resolution possible because cropping reduces the quality.

Low Resolution

Shooting at a low resolution may allow you to store more images on your memory card, but it is a bad idea as this means that the image quality will suffer. And if you intend to print large photographs like for portrait photography, you won’t be able to print them without noticing the pixels. Better buy additional memory cards and take your photos with higher resolution.

Too Much Noise

Digital noise in your photograph are those unsightly little speckles on your image. The higher the ISO the more noise will appear, and the more you enlarge the image the more you can see noise. Night time images are prone to noise as the camera struggles to record detail. To reduce noise, use the largest image quality setting and always use a tripod so that you can choose the lowest ISO setting without causing blur.

Underexposed Pictures

An underexposed image is one that is too dark because not enough light reached the sensor when the image was taken. If the image comes out looking too shadowy and underexposed, you can try adjusting the aperture with a wider setting to allow more light in. You can also adjust the exposure on a DSLR, selecting the ‘+’ to add more light, usually in ½ stop increments.

Overexposed Pictures

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If your photograph is too bright and lacking in detail, then it is overexposed. This means there is too much light hitting the sensor. Overexposure can be particularly bad on bright days or with light colored subjects. To correct this, try underexposing the image by choosing -0.5 or -1 and seeing if more detail has been retained. Additionally, use spot metering for accurate results by picking a grey mid-toned area in your image as the guideline.

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Choosing Your First DSLR for Professional Photography

dslr cameraNow that you have undoubtedly decided to be a professional photographer, finding the DSLR camera that fits your needs must be your topmost priority. Among the brands and models out in the market today are Sigma, Olympus, Canon, Sony and Nikon. You can find a lot of these brands in different stores ranging from entry-level cameras to more advanced units.

Choosing your first DSLR camera might look so easy but it is complicated, as if finding a needle in a haystack as described by a known photographer. The choice of brand must not only be based on the brand name but should also be based in other various factors.

Here are some tips you may want to consider in choosing your first DSLR camera.

  1. Budget

Remember that photographer like you should be wise when it comes to buying the right DSLR since it would directly affect all your future career plans.

Owning a DSLR unit does not mean having the complete package at your hand even though some brands include basic accessories. If you want to be serious in this kind of business, you would surely need some top of the line accessories like lenses, tripod, etc.

Try to compare prices and promos in terms of payment mode or included accessories, in different camera store to be able to choose which one would give you the best advantage of all.

  1. Camera Comfort

Different online stores are now considered to be as competitive as its physical store especially at the onset of different social media. Don’t be surprised to see products like DSLR cameras being sold in the online market. Although this is slowly becoming the trend in the market, going to the camera store and physically hold the camera of your choice would be the best idea in owning your DSLR camera.

We all know cameras come in different brands, models and size and being able to actually hold the camera is better so you will know if it is comfortable or easy to carry.

  1. Research

As mentioned earlier, some photographers think of buying a camera as similar to finding a needle in a haystack. Now to avoid confusion and waste of valuable time, try to do some research first on your top three (3) choices. Check the camera specs, accessories included and similar important information. Make sure the camera fits your type of photography and needs.

  1. Speed

In the world of photography, speed (system speed and shutter speed) is very important regardless of whether you are into portrait photography or the more exciting sports photography and the like. Photographers must be able take shots fast and catch those fleeting special moments. Staffordshire wedding photographers certainly find speed important in covering a wedding

  1. ISO Performance

ISO simply defines how sensitive to light your camera is – which means the higher its ISO the better your camera would perform in low light situations. Common DSLR units have ISO capabilities of 100 – 1,600 range but for some high-end units, ISO ranges from 3,200 – 6400 and even at 12,800. The problem with high ISO though is that it usually produces more noise in your image so you will have to set the ISO to just the right setting so the image won’t appear grainy.

Keep in mind that your choice of DSLR camera can affect your professional career in many ways. Thus, you need to be very careful in choosing your first DSLR camera.

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All About Concert Photography

If you are someone who is into music, especially live music, then concert photography would be something you could consider going to as a photographer. You get to enjoy your favorite musical artist playing a favorite song of yours live and be able to enjoy the experience too. However, it is also one of the most challenging in the sense that we do not get to have control of almost any parameter in the picture: the subject, the lighting, not to mention we are limited to the angles we could shoot with the limited free space available. Then there are the people attending the concert who would be certainly captured in our frame and they could only care less.

Despite these challenges, concert photography is actually less difficult to do than what most people might think. Let this post show you how.

For starters, try to go to a more intimate concert that would enable to roam a bit more freely and shoot from any angle you wish. If you have a band that you know personally, it will be a good place to start from.

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The camera

They often say it’s not the camera that is important but the person behind it. But in the case of concert photography, the camera plays a big role, especially due to the environment these concerts are usually held. For instance, many concerts are held under dim lighting, so your camera should have lenses with wider aperture (like f/2.8, f1.8, or f/1.4) and using cameras that allows us to take photos at high ISO without noise. Even if your camera could not be able to take high ISO images with less noise, boost the ISO settings anyway and just adjust things in post-production. And in dynamic shows like rock bands, we will have to use a relatively high shutter speeds to freeze movement of drummer or the singer.

Another challenge would be the measurement of the light and selecting the correct exposure. In live shows the optimal would be to measure light from a point which we want to expose by using the point metering. Still, check the histogram and the monitor for overexposed points, to ensure that the important objects in the frame are exposed properly. Shooting in RAW is highly recommended too to correct images better.

Should I Use Flash?

Unfortunately, flash has no effect on lighting the singer, especially if you’re far from the stage so better turn it off. If you are close to the stage remember to first measure the light by the environment until you get proper exposure in terms of atmosphere you want before adding the flash to get some ambient lighting showing the atmosphere while the flash will lit the singer and freeze his movement.

Wait for the spot light

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When it’s too dark and we are far from the stage and we cannot use the flash, wait until the spot light, the narrow, focused and strong light, will light the artist for a more artistic effect. In concert photography, what matters are certain moments more than the whole event itself.

Color

In most concerts, red is the dominant color. So be careful that the red color will not “burn” and lose details in affected areas. Better take the photo a bit underexposed in RAW and then add some brightness so no details will be lost in those areas. If it fails, one option is to convert the image to black & white so you can save its quality.Having some photography knowledge pays off in cases like this.

Composition

Of course, the most important element to consider in concert photography, or any photography format for that matter, is composition. Whatever story you wish to tell about the concert through photos. you should have good and interesting compositions to show. It could be a close up image of even just hand playing the guitar or the whole band doing the performance. It all depends on your artistic taste and equipment as well.

Concerts are not an easy event to photograph, as an event photographer will tell you. but with a some practice and knowledge, you can get beautiful results.

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How to Familiarize Fast Your First DSLR Camera

wedding tipsGetting your hands on your first ever DSLR camera surely made you feel excited to start shooting. But then, upon seeing the different controls on your camera as well as the thick manual that comes with it, you suddenly felt intimidated. You are tempted to just go ahead and practice shooting instead of reading the manual that you find time-consuming.

Well, while it may take some time to finish reading the manual, being able to start familiarizing your camera fast is possible by following these steps:

  1. Learn the shooting modes in your camera

You will notice that there are different dials in your camera with letters A, P, M or similar. These letters represent the shooting modes that your camera has to offer. The labels for these modes sometimes differ among cameras but they basically mean the same.

The common shooting modes are the following:

  1. Aperture priority – this allows you to choose the aperture to use for the shoot while letting the camera select the right shutter speed. It is best to use this mode when shooting in low light or when the location has insufficient light. The wider the aperture, the more light gets in the camera and makes the captured image clear.
  2. Shutter speed priority – this mode lets you determine the shutter speed while the camera chooses the aperture to use. This mode is best for sports photographers or those who fast moving objects often. Shutter speed priority mode can freeze moving subjects so the capture image is still sharp and visible.
  3. Manual mode – if you want to full control over how your images would look like, then choose the manual mode. It allows you to set the aperture, shutter, speed, white balance, exposure and many others. This shooting mode is ideal for those who are already have a wide experience in photography.
  4. Program mode – this mode lets you control the built-in flash, the white balance and most of all the ISO while the rest will be auto-set by the camera.

After learning the shooting modes, focus on the mode that you think is best to use for the type of photography you are into.

  1. Understand basic photography terms

Photographers need to understand the basic photography terms in order to familiarize their camera faster and of course learn about photography even better. If you are new to digital photography, you will have to read and understand the common terms you will encounter as a photographer. This can help you master photography faster.

  1. Know the difference of RAW and JPEG

Your DSLR camera can be set to shoot in RAW or JPEG. A raw file is basically an unprocessed image that you can later enhance or edit to your desire later during post-production. One the other hand, jpeg is an image that is automatically processed and delivered by the camera. Most professional photographers like this photographer berkshire shoot in RAW. You will need to understand the difference between the two so you can better select the one that suits your needs.

  1. Skim the manual from time to time

Spend every free time you have in skimming through the manual so you will learn more correct information. If you encounter a trouble, open the manual for you will surely find the answer to your question or solution to the problem.

  1. Read reviews online

There are online forums for photographers where you can join in or visit whenever you need answers for any problem you encounter with your DSLR. There are also sites by professional photographers that offer valuable information for first time DSLR users or amateur photographers.

DSLR cameras are not the ordinary point and shoot digital camera. These DSLR are way much better that the old digital we use. Make sure to get the most out of it by familiarizing how it works and how you can capture great images through it.

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8 Newborn Photography Props You’ll Need

babyNowadays, most photographers use props in their photography sessions. Props can make a shot more creative and interesting. Props can also help reveal the personality of your subject. A lot of vendors are now selling different kinds of props especially cute props for newborns.

In newborn photography, cute props are used for different purposes. Some props are utilized as support for the newborn. Other props serve as cover for the baby to make him/her look more adorable. In general, newborn photography props can add more beauty to the image. It can make the subject, the baby; standout and the photo look more remarkable.

If you’re interested to become a newborn photographer, here are some props that you should buy for a more fun and exciting photography session.

  1. Faux furs

Faux furs are great to use on the floor for the baby to lie down. A solid-colored faux fur looks great in pictures and can make the baby stand out. The texture is also soft making the baby feel relaxed and comfortable.

  1. Hammocks

Baby hammocks are very cute props that can surely make the newborn look more adorable. It is also generally safe to use and versatile for a more creative shot. A hammock can emphasize the petite size of the newborn which can create a really artistic image. You can buy them online or in baby shops.

  1. Stretch head bands

Stretch headbands are soft, safe and attractive to use for female newborns. Make sure to check it first before buying and ensure it is not tight so it won’t hurt the baby’s head. Photographers from newborn photography Calgary like to put this on their female newborn clients.

  1. Baby blanket

Baby blankets are a must have for newborn photographers. You can place it on the bed, inside another prop (like a basket or blanket) to provide stability or use a baby blanket to wrap the baby for a more comfortable pose.

  1. Baby hats

The newborn will also look cute if he/she only has a baby hat with no clothes on. It will give focus on the main subject which is the baby. You can buy baby hats in classic colors and there are also hats in more attractive colors like baby pink, lavender and light blue.

  1. Baby basket and buckets

Baby baskets, buckets and boxes are a favorite among newborn or baby photographers. You can buy them in different shops or order them from reliable suppliers online. When use these props in a newborn photo shoot, you need to put blankets inside to keep the baby warm and to keep the basket or box from tumbling or falling. Make sure the prop is sturdy before positioning the baby in it.

  1. Baby wraps

Baby wraps are often used on baby as replacement for his/her clothes. A baby wrap doesn’t only make a baby look more adorable but it also gives them a warm feeling which keeps the baby in deep sleep. In choosing wraps to buy, look for soft texture that won’t harm a baby’s delicate skin.

  1. Bean bag

Beanies or bean bags are widely used by newborn photographers. You can find them in different sizes, shapes and colors, just choose what you think suits your needs. Make sure though that the fabric is soft and washable so it will be safe to use and can be cleaned fast.

The props you bought must always be washed or sanitized before and after using. This will ensure that you baby is safe and that the props will last for a long time.

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Traditional or Photojournalistic: Which is Better?

wedding photographyWith the many different styles of photography today, it can be very confusing which one is better than the other. Choosing the best photography style to use is one of the important decisions that a newbie photographer has to make. His decision must depend on the type of photography he is into and what he comfortable with.

For amateur wedding photographers, there are two common types of wedding photography styles that they can choose from: traditional and photojournalistic. These two styles are sometimes called by different names but each style has distinct characteristics which amateur photographers must be aware of.

Characteristics of Traditional Style of Photography

Traditional style is what most wedding photographers like wedding photographer essex are used to following before. It is where formal individual and group portrait shots are done before and during the wedding. The wedding photographer usually gives directions to his subjects on where to position and what pose to make. The scenes for the pictorial are usually setup according to what the photographer thinks will look great in pictures.

Characteristics of Photojournalistic Approach

Photojournalistic (or sometimes referred as reportage) style focuses on capturing precious moments in the wedding as they happen. The wedding photographer doesn’t give any directions to the couple or their guests when taking shots. Moreover, he doesn’t alter the scenes in preparation for a shot. The wedding photographer just take shots based on what he thinks is important to capture. But of course, he needs to be skilled and knowledgeable in this style to be able to do it perfectly.

One of the questions that a couple usually ask to professional wedding photographers is “What style are you going to use for my wedding”. If you are new to wedding photography, you will have to choose what style to use and how to convince the client that your style is better than others.

Traditional vs Photojournalistic

Going back to choosing between traditional and photojournalistic, there are important factors to consider when picking out a style. You can ask yourself these questions:

  1. Is there enough time to setup before taking pictures?

Traditional photography usually consumes more time since a photographer needs to set up the place or give instructions to his subjects on what pose to do. But well, if the wedding itinerary includes an hour of pictorial before the wedding and several minutes of taking shots during the wedding, then that is fine.

  1. Is there a wedding shot list that the couple wants me to use?

If the couple desires to have a picture of all their guests, then traditional style works best. They can be assured that most if not all their guests will be captured on camera. There are also guests who love to be photographed before the wedding so they still look fresh and gorgeous.

  1. Will the couple and their guests feel comfortable?

Some people feel uneasy when photographed so for this photojournalistic might be the better choice.  You can shoot from a distance without being intrusive or obvious to your subject.

  1. Which tells a better story?

Wedding photographers of Piers Photography aim to present to the newlywed a wedding album that shows a beautiful, touching story of their union. Photojournalistic can definitely capture more realistic moments as compared to traditional.

In this modern day, a professional wedding photographer must be flexible and skilled in both traditional and photojournalistic. It is best if you can combine both approach and create your own style. Maybe you can take some formal shots during the wedding just to make sure the subjects look great. Then, from time to time, you can take candid shots during the wedding ceremony and party. Nothing will be left out or missed.

 

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What Equipment Do I Need for Landscape Photography

landscape photoLooking at wonderful landscape photos makes us realize how beautiful our surroundings are. These pictures show the different landforms such as hills and mountains as well as great water forms like rivers, waterfalls and many others. While landscape photos may appear easy to capture but then in reality, these photos were carefully planned and shot using the right photography equipment.

Professional photographers need to use the right gear and combine it with their skills and knowledge to come up with terrific landscape images. Those who’d like to become a landscape photographer must research on what to buy so as not to waste many.

Here are some guidelines on what to buy and how to choose.

  1. DSLR camera

There are many types of cameras in the market today but nothing beats a full-type DSLR camera. DSLR cameras undoubtedly produce sharper images with different settings and tools that you can adjust according to your needs. Manchester Wedding Photographer uses the best full-frame cameras.

When choosing to buy for landscape photography, look for a brand or model that is weather-proof and allows you to easily control the aperture and shutter speed. An aperture priority mode or semi-manual setting is advised when shooting landscapes.

Aperture plays a huge part in this type of photography. Shooting at an aperture of f/9 to f/16 can give you a greater depth of field so everything will be in focus and not just the focal point.

  1. Filters

You can ask professional landscape photographers and they will certainly advise you to buy filters. Filters allow you to change how the image will appear. Some of the commonly used filters are Neutral density (ND) filters, Black and white filters and colored filters. ND filters can help you shoot in longer exposure, B&W for producing black and white photos and Color filter to even up the lighting on the picture.

  1. Lenses

Lenses are as important as cameras. You can choose a less expensive camera body with a correct lens and you can already achieve great landscape images. Select lenses that are weatherproof so it can withstand even tough weather or harsh elements like sand.

The recommended lenses for landscapes are ultra wide angle lens and telephoto lens. Ultra wide angle lens can give you a broader view so every important element will be in the picture. The focal length of ultra wide lenses is around 40mm. On the other hand, a telephoto lens can help you get clear images even from a distant. You can zoom in to capture images from afar. Telephoto lenses have a focal length of 70mm to 300 or even 400mm.

  1. Batteries, flashlight, tripod and memory cards

If you plan to go to high places or shoot in the golden hours, then you will need to bring a flashlight. This can help you find your way in the dark and tough locations. Spare batteries are important in case your primary battery drains out. Tripod can provide stability to your camera to avoid camera shakes which can affect the images you capture. Lastly, memory cards must always be ready so you can save more or nothing will be missed.

Apart from the equipment, it is also important for a professional photographer like this documentary wedding photographer to choose and photo editing program and learn it. With a photo editing software like Light room or Photoshop, landscape photos will look more glorious and visually-appealing.

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