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Whether you're just learning photography basics or you need some advice on an advanced photo technique, our How-To section offers tips for shutterbugs at every level.

Camera Hack: Flash Bounce - 12/31/07
Camera Hack: Flash Bounce - 12/31/07One of the most flattering light sources you can use for a portrait subject is a large, even illumination. The wraparound shadows are softer and less harsh, making blemishes and wrinkles disappear.

The Tablet Shall Set You Free - 12/24/07
The Tablet Shall Set You Free - 12/24/07I made a tough decision this year: I sold the 35mm film camera system that has seen me through years of shooting. I also parted with some medium-format gear and a few other things that had collected inches of dust.

Sanitized For Your Protection - 12/17/07
Sanitized For Your Protection - 12/17/07

When will you get this through your head? Digital sensors are delicate instruments that need to be treated with care. Don't use canned air to clean them, never change a D-SLR lens with the camera turned on, and obviously avoid removing the lens in windy or dusty situations.

Simulating In-Camera Effects
Use these photoshop tricks to replicate the look of aperture and shutter speed adjustments

quick fixWith a digital SLR, and even with many compact cameras, you can manually select the shutter speed and ƒ-stop for powerful creative control. Fast shutter speeds (1⁄500 sec. and higher) freeze most action, and slow shutter speeds (1⁄30 sec. and slower) blur action. Wide apertures (ƒ/4.5 and wider) can be selected for shallow depth of field, and small apertures (ƒ/8 and smaller) can be used for greater depth of field.

January/February 2008 HelpLine
Technically Speaking

helplineQ) I'm trying to figure out how the exposure compensation works on my digital SLR. It doesn't seem to affect the metering. Am I using it the right way, or is there a problem with my camera?

Photographing Festivals
Tips For Capturing The Fun, Action And Excitement Of Special Events
Photographing Festivals

The action, costumes, colors and performances at festivals, special events and reenactments make them a ton of fun to attend and photograph. Taking snapshots is easy, but if you want to turn your snapshots into great shots, you have to pay careful attention to everything that's going on around you, as well as realize the importance of your camera settings and lens choice. After all, you may get only one chance to photograph the event.

Effective Flash
Five ways to improve your flash photography
Effective Flash

I'll be the first to admit, old-school flash photography intimidated me. Just the thought of figuring out guide numbers and flash charts put me in a cold sweat. If I was in a spontaneous shooting situation, say, photographing a colorful market, I just put my flash away and shot using available light. This resulted in a lot of mediocre photographs.

Build A Better Backup Plan - 12/10/07
Build A Better Backup Plan - 12/10/07

It's a shame that being a digital photographer entails a whole lot more than just shooting pictures. Concerns over where to store all those photos-not to mention how to make sure they're around in years to come so that you can find them-are as much a part of photography today as ƒ-stops and shutter speeds ever were.

Calibrate Or Die - 12/3/07
Calibrate Or Die - 12/3/07 If you work for a photo magazine, the number one question you get from everyone you ever meet is "What camera should I buy?" How come nobody ever asks about the importance of color-managed workflow?

How Zebras Help You Take Better Pictures - 11/26/07
How Zebras Help You Take Better Pictures - 11/26/07Part of the fun of being a professional photographer is whipping out a light meter. It looks a little mysterious and makes clients feel like they're getting their money's worth.

Mr. Wizard Says: Use Your Flash Outside! - 11/19/07
Mr. Wizard Says: Use Your Flash Outside! - 11/19/07

I am a recovering television addict, having acknowledged my problem and cancelled my cable service. I think it stems from an adolescence in which I stared at "educational programming" for hours on end.


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