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Category: How To

13 Jul

Street Photography: How to Capture Candid Moments Like a Pro

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For many photographers – even the masters – street photography is the most intimidating test of their skills. However, it’s also one of the most rewarding. It fuses a multitude of photographic genres, from architecture, to portraiture, to photojournalism – perhaps even abstract – into one, definitive creative pursuit. Street photography gives us the unique opportunity to capture extraordinary, ‘decisive moments’ as our fellow humans go about their ordinary lives. By the end of this article, hopefully you’ll be armed with the knowledge that will allow you to capture candid street moments like the pros do. The Right Gear Photography is inherently a technical pursuit. Naturally, a solid understanding of your ‘work tools’ is essential. However, be careful of becoming too focused on...
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2 Jul

What shutter speed means and how to use it

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The definition of ‘shutter speed’ means how quickly the shutter inside your camera opens and closes. This is integral to controlling exposure as it literally times how long your film or digital sensor is exposed to light. When you hear your camera ‘click’ what you are really hearing is the accurately controlled timing of the shutter opening and closing. Shutter speed is measured in fractions of time, and is controlled by selecting incremental fractions of seconds on your camera body. There are two main aspects shutter speed controls: 1) how much light enters your camera, and 2) motion and blur. Let’s talk about controlling light first. Imagine light as if it were a hose of water pointed right at your lens. If...
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26 Jun

How to take great natural light portraits

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The great thing about natural light is that it’s free, and it’s everywhere. Creating beautiful natural light portraits is simply about training your eye to see that light, and learning how to control it while telling an intimate story about your subject. Natural light can either be soft and diffused (think of the open shade under an awning), or harsh and direct (think of standing at high noon under the direct sun while squinting). Each one gives your portrait a different feel, so choose wisely. Diffused light is always more flattering because it does not create deep shadows- and can be created and manipulated with a very simple reflector/diffuser tool.   Here’s how to make your own: Tape a piece of tin foil to...
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1 Jun

Tackling a Year-Long Self Portrait Project

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81 down. 284 to go. I’m halfway through my year-long self portrait project, and I’ve completed a quarter of my goal of 365 self portraits in 365 days. A year of self portraits is a challenge every photographer should undertake. It forces a camera in your hands everyday and requires you to think about how to shoot the same subject in hundreds of different ways. Plus, who else would let you photograph them anytime, day or night, for an entire year? Other than your dog, probably no one. Self portraiture allows for practice with composition, focus and metering. It brings you to new places and forces you to think differently about what can be considered a ‘portrait.’ And over the past six months, I’ve...
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12 May

Shooting the Sun: 5 Techniques for Manipulating Light

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Lighting plays a crucial role in photography. It can draw attention to or away from a subject, and sets the tone of a photo. As photographers, we compose pictures around the light. And unless we’re in a photo studio surrounded by portable electronic mini-suns, we have to work with what Mother Nature doles out. It can be tricky, but it doesn’t have to be. Here are five simple techniques for manipulating the sun in photos. 1. Sunburst Creating a sunburst is a great way to incorporate light into photos, especially on cloudless days when the sun is high in the sky. Sunbursts can add an element of interest to landscapes, portraits and detail shots. Creating the effect is easy — it’s all...
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2 Mar

Tips for Shooting Spring Flowers

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We asked our friends over at Washington Photo Safari to give us some tips on shooting those beautiful Spring blooms. They offer a variety Cherry Blossom classes, in the DC area, in honor of the popular Cherry Blossom Festival in the Spring. Here is what instructor E. David Luria said about capturing the best shot: What is the best time of day to shoot? Early morning or late afternoon (the golden hour) is always the best time to shoot flowers, or any other subjects. With the sun low in the sky, the light is softer. The photographer can lie down on the ground and get the sun shining through the flower or blossom petals, it makes a nice effect. Flowers should be done in the...
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1 Feb

How to Create Stunning Time-Lapse Photos

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Creating hypnotizing time-lapse photos has never been easier thanks to advancements in camera technology. More memory, stronger battery and built-in intervalometers allow virtually anyone with patience to participate in the “set and snap” approach to shooting. Read on to find out how to take advantage of this camera setting and deliver time-lapse clips that will win over your audience and followers on social media. Time-Lapse Gear 101 In order to capture stable, fluid shots, you need the right gear. In addition to a camera with a built-in intervalometer, you’ll need a tripod. Even if you have steady hands, it’s still better to rely on a stand for consistency. A large memory card is also required because you’ll be taking a lot of...
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21 Nov

Food Photography Basics

Photography by Kang L
Food photography can be just as fun as it looks! The key is to master the basics of food styling (or hire a food stylist,) choose complementary colors (garnishes do wonders!) Also don’t forget to make use of depth of field and of course the lighting. Natural window light is probably the most pleasant when it comes to food. Read more tips for food photography here: http://www.lightstalking.com/how-to-photograph-food...
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