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Saturday, 10 March 2012

How Trick Photography and Special Effects Can Make You a Better Photographer

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Understanding trick photography and special effects is about understanding the limit and potential of your camera in relation to light. If you want to quickly become a great photographer, then consider starting a photographic project to take trick photos and special effects.

Emily Didonato
Think about how most people try to become good at photography. They take their camera, go out, and snap away. Nothing wrong with this, but if you have a clear goal to master a specific technique then the learning process is focused and therefore accelerated. The bonus is that you will specialize and get beautiful and interesting photos along the way.

Understanding light

You'll find that understanding light is probably the most difficult aspect of photography. It is also the most important. You can't have a photograph without light, so you need to understand how light behaves under different shooting conditions.

Great photographers pay great attention to the study of light so that they can recognize and create a particular mood or effects with light. Not all light are the same, as they can be harsh, soft, warm, or cooling. The direction of light can be as important as the quality of light. You can use different illumination such as direct, backlit, or side-lit to extract different texture, shadow, and details from your subject.

Light paintings or drawings are among some of the trick photography techniques that is done using long exposure photography. The results are often spectacular but deceptively simple. It is simple to start, but can take a long time to master.

Light paintings or drawings are created by taking a long exposure photo and manipulating the light source to create an effect. The more common examples are of people drawing their name using a flashlight with a photo taken at night. The more creative you get with this simple idea, the more interesting pictures you'll get. So when you start taking trick photos like these and experiment, you'll gain a greater understanding of light.

Understanding your camera

The other side of it is to understand how to capture light. All digital single-lens reflex camera (DSLR) has a shutter between the camera's lens and sensor. Pressing the button on your camera to take a picture opens the shutter for a duration of time, and then shuts it back up. This basically controls how long you let light flood the sensor so you can freeze a moment in time.
Leanne Decker

Aperture controls how wide the hole in your camera lens are. The bigger the opening or diameter, the more light hits the sensor. With aperture you control how much light to let in to the camera sensor, but also the depth of field. You also control how sensitive the sensor is to the incoming light by setting the ISO. The higher it is, the less light is needed to capture a scene with the risk of introducing noise to the picture.

A good way to master your camera is to learn to take levitation photos. These trick photos usually depict people floating or flying without any means of support or digital manipulation, so the action is captured in the camera as-is. The secret to creating these pictures is to simply jump and freeze the action with your camera. Again, a technique that is very simple to use but takes time to master.

The main element in freezing time with your camera is the shutter speed, but other settings like aperture and ISO matters. A fast shutter speed freezes a moving object, but requires more light. You'll need to balance and adjust these elements to ensure that you can freeze an object without blurring it, otherwise it ruins the illusion. Doing this exercise pretty much forces you to understand and experiment with your camera till you get it right. Along the way, you'll have greater understanding of how to make the most of your camera.

Start taking trick photos and grow fast

You can speed up photographic learning process by just applying these two trick photography techniques. When you have mastered them, you'll have understood more about the relationship between light and camera than most photographers!

Author: Jim T May

Do you want to create fantastic and spectacular photos? If yes, I recommend taking a look at Trick Photography and Special Effects by Evan Sharboneau in order to boost and enhance you photos with outstanding special effects!

Friday, 9 March 2012

5 Simple Steps To Set Up Your Micro Stock Photographic Business

Have you ever wondered how other photographers are doing a living? Maybe you heard that some have even made a fortune! You might be surprised in knowing, that most of them are working online at the comfort of their home or office. This is all true and possible in the digital era. 

Digital photography has revolutionized the way we capture, process and market our photographs. It made it more reachable to a larger spectrum of photographers, both novice and amateurs. But what does it entail to start an online photographic business? Three simple words: equipment, knowledge and commitment. 

Ninel Conde
Let us see together how you can achieve this in five easy steps. 

Buy the Necessary Gear 

To start off you need two essential equipments:   
  • An entry level DSLR camera    
  • A personal computer with ample storage space    
Learn How to Shoot Marketable Photos       

Study billboards, magazines, newsletters, brochures and any other forms of adverts.      
  • Observe what type of styles and compositions are the most in demand.    
  • Examine the type of audience these photos are trying to target.    
Enhance Your Photos     

Upload your photos onto your computer and enhance, or amend, the following by using a basic photo editing software.                
  • Sharpness    
  • Contrast    
  • Saturation    
  • Composition (cropping)    
  • Defects (e.g. chromatic aberration)    
Upload Your Photos Online     

Research the internet for a reputable micro stock site. It is important that you read properly the terms and conditions of each and every site, since these differ from one another. 

Upload your work onto your favorite site and key word it. Within a few days your work is online ready for sale, subject that you satisfy the basic requirements. 

Jordan Carver
Read and Research 

Visit your local library and find books related to micro stock photography, managing a business and marketing. Participate in online forums discussing topics related to photography, particularly selling photos online. Join a local photographic club so as to share and exchange knowledge with other members. 

Take Action Now! 

As with any other type of business, you need to invest time in structuring your photographic portfolio. This way you will be building your reputation and establishing yourself as a photographer with potential future clients. 

To sum it all up, this is a great opportunity for every photo enthusiast to start making money online, be your own boss and work at your own leisure. In due time, you can turn photography from a simple hobby into a profitable enterprise.

If you are still a novice and you do not know from where to start, I strongly suggest that you have a look at this incredible product - DigiCamCash A step by step guide on how to turn photos into cash!

Author: Michael Abela
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Thursday, 8 March 2012

How To Purchase A Camera For Professional Photography

Aspiring Steve McCurry or Ansel Adams? If you love photography, and want to make a career out of it, it takes a lot more than inspiration and an eye for creating fabulous photos. It takes solid training from a professional photography school and the right camera. This article helps prime you to choose the best first professional camera for your photography career.
Nicole Scherzinger
Research, Research, Research
Your first step is to learn about everything you can regarding your subject: in this case, the best first camera for your photography career. Of course, take into consideration the top brands and prices, and read up on online reviews, and ask around to formulate the best working framework to start searching for a new camera within. No matter what you do, or how well you know how to bargain shop, this will be an expensive purchase, and thus, the more initial research you can do, the better off you will be. Treat it with the same respect you would offer a new car- after all, it will be the most significant tool of your career - apart from your talent, of course.
Immediate Needs
Next, consider your immediate need for this professional camera. Is it something that you want to play around with, need for photography school, or as your first career camera? Deciding what and how you will be using this camera for will help you consider what kinds of specific features, elements, and capabilities it should require.
Manual or Digital
The first of these camera considerations should, of course, be the most fundamental. Do you want a manual or a digital camera, or a camera that uses both technology? Almost all photography schools and professional positions will require that you have manual capability in your camera in order to understand beyond the automatic nature of our immediate photo-capturing world, how a picture becomes the picture that it does. Digital, on the other hand, allows you to easily and conveniently manipulate and print photos taken. Your best bet, if you can afford it, is always a hybrid manual/digital camera for any professional photography situation.
Whichever kind of camera you choose, will determine what features you need to look for in order to get the best professional grade photos for your career. As a professional photographer, one should always remember in purchasing equipment for their career that as many options should be afforded to you in the rendering of a photo -no matter your type of photographer. 
You want your talent to shine through, and thus, you want to be able to control light through aperture, color temperature through manipulation, and use focus/movement technology to capture fast action shots to blurry movement. Aside from having these options, you always want to be able to have high resolution ability. For digital, this means lots of megapixels. For manual, this means the right lens.
Aside from these basics in brand, price, features, function, and kind of camera; as a professional photographer (pre- or post-photography school), you should never buy cheap quality or nix options that will be imperative in your ability to shoot the best in photographs. 
This doesn't mean you have to have the best and most expensive camera on the market for photography school, or as a novice; but that you should always choose better lens material quality/brands, have protective carrying cases and gear, and include precious extras such as high resolution, high grade light filters, and focus features. Remind yourself as always that this is your career in photography, and to deliver prize-winning photos that compel-you require quality equipment and your camera is the most imperative piece in your toolkit.
Author: Travis Silver

An easy to follow, step by step course in mastering the art of digital photography is Learn Digital Photography Now.  If you would like to further your knowledge in digital photography, I strongly recommend that you aquire this digital book.

What is HDR - High Dynamic Range?

Julie Ordon
HDR stands for High Dynamic Range and it is a technique to process photos. Most often 3-5 pictures (taken from the same subject) are processed to HDR and a result is a image with larger range between the lightest and darkest areas of the image. Too bad normal computer screens and monitors can't render the outcome right way because they are low dynamic range devices, and thus tonemapping is often applied to HDR images. With the aid of tonemapping the HDR photo can be rendered in an aesthetically pleasant way on screens and monitors.
Often HDR and tonemapping as terms are mixed and it is not clear which term should be used. Not every HDR photo is tonemapped nor every tonemapped photo is created from High Dynamic Range picture. Tonemapped picture can be made from one RAW (or even single JPEG) photo and it can look good but technically it shouldn't be called High Dynamic Range image. Summa summarum, when both techniques (HDR and tonemapping) are applied usually the best outcome is achieved.
Megan Fox
HDR is a good technique and can be used as often as you want - just bear in mind that it doesn't usually turn a bad photo into a good quality photo. Take a great quality picture with your camera and you are good to go to make it a High Dynamic Range masterpiece!
What you need to make a HDR photo?
  1. Camera (Preferred DSLR)
  2. Tripod
  3. Photomatix software
  4. (Optional) Photoshop for after processing
Bonus tip: Camera price doesn't matter as much as your skills to use the camera of any price tag. It is advisable to go for a somewhat inexpensive camera in the beginning, learn to use it and perhaps later buy more expensive one. Trust me, good images can be shot with cheap camera... it's really all about the person holding the camera
How do you make a HDR photo?
  1. Take 3 shots with different exposure levels (-2,0,2) from the same subject with tripod.
  2. Put the pictures to Photomatix.
  3. Play with the settings until you are satisfied. Save the picture as JPEG.
  4. Open the just saved JPEG picture in Photoshop and do some after processing (curves and levels, for example)
Author: Paavo Rautio

Do you want to create fantastic and spectacular photos? If yes, I recommend taking a look at Trick Photography and Special Effects by Evan Sharboneau in order to boost and enhance you photos with outstanding special effects!

Tuesday, 6 March 2012

5 Essential Items a Photographer Should Carry Around When Doing an Outdoor Photo Shoot

Some of you might have already started guessing what these items might be. A few might say a light weight mid-range zoom lens; others might say a tripod or even extra batteries. These are definitely justifiable accessories, but today I would like to write about small items that most of the time we tend to overlook or never even bother to consider.
Have you ever been in a situation in which the slightest things have jeopardized the whole photo shoot? I bet you have had such an experience.
So let us see together the five essential items you should have with you when shooting an outdoor photo shoot.
Pencil and Paper
When words are not enough you resort to diagrams and sketches. There will be instances, where no matter how hard you try to get a message through it turns to be an impossible task. During these moments a pencil or pen and a piece of paper can do miracles.
You do not have to be a fully fleshed artist, though I am sure most of you are very capable, to draw diagrams and shapes. The best way to explain poses is by drawing stick figures. They are easy to draw and effective.
First Aid Kit
A small first aid kit should do the job. If you include plasters, bandages, scissors, and disposable gloves it should be good as a starting point. You might want to throw in some painkillers and an insect repellent spray or lotion.
Sewing Kit
Though this should be part of the model's accessory list, I suggest you take care of it in case your model oversees this important item. You do not want to ruin a photo shoot simply for a loose button or a torn strap.
Together with this I suggest you include some pins and paper clips. They come in very handy when you are in a hurry and pressed for time.
Adhesive Tape & Rubber bands
I have an arsenal of these types of mini items. On more than one occasion such items have turned out to be invaluable articles.
Anything that can be used to fix, mend or tie is a good candidate. Items such as adhesive tape, rubber bands, sticky gum, a small stapler and string are all valuable things that can save your day. Uses can vary from fixing temporary a tripod to attaching a reflector to a branch or pole.
Chocolate Bars
Last but not least, you should have a snack high in sugar content, such as a couple of chocolate bars. These are small and easy to carry around. Though one usually plans the duration of a photo shoot, at times due to factors beyond your control, the set time is exceeded.
During these extra hours, both you and your model would appreciate a snack high in sugar content. This should supplement your bodies with the needed energy, as it would help you get along with a couple of more working hours.
Taking on board the above mentioned items, will guarantee that the chances of a photo shoot going wrong are kept to a minimum. To your advantage, it can be an opportunity to show that you are a professional person to work with, as you have always a contingency plan in case things do not go as planned.
If you are still a novice and you do not know from where to start, I strongly suggest that you have a look at this incredible product - DigiCamCash A step by step guide on how to turn photos into cash!

Author: Michael Abela
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