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Ask a question about a photo technique or just gather information you can use later. Our Helpline column offers advice valuable to any photographer.

April 23, 2007 HelpLine
Tamperproof Photography

Q) An interesting problem came up recently with regards to evidence of bylaw contraventions in Pretoria, City of Tshwane, South Africa. The City Councils officials have switched to digital cameras for much of their work. However, it turns out that in court proceedings, the magistrates/judges aren't prepared to accept digital photographs as evidence because of the possibility of "fabricating" evidence. This is a valid point, and they want photographic film evidence, either positives or negatives. The question then is whether there's any photographic processing done in-camera, which leaves a watermark (maybe we should call that a "digimark"), which will indicate when pixels in the original have been removed or added, as opposed to colour, gamma and highlight or shadow adjustment to improve the original photo WITHOUT altering any evidence that might be required in court. If not available yet, this is certainly worthwhile exploring.

April 16, 2007 HelpLine
Balancing White Balance

Q) I'm starting to pay more attention to white balance in my photography. I've read some of what you and others in PCPhoto have said about not forgetting white balance when shooting RAW. So now I've been trying some photography while keeping the dial off of AWB. For the most part, it has been working well. But there have been some situations where I haven't been satisfied. So I'm wondering about custom white balance and whether I should always be using that?

April 9, 2007 HelpLine

Need More Space
Q) I'm running out of room on my hard drives! While I've been archiving my original images to DVDs, I have hundreds of images on my computer. I'd like to add more storage, but I'm not sure which direction to go.

April 2, 2007 HelpLine

Shooting Hoops
Q) I'm new to digital SLRs and want to photograph my son's indoor basketball games. Working in shutter- and aperture-priority modes, I can get sharp photos or bright photos inside, but haven't been able to get sharp, properly exposed photos without a lot of noise. My white balance and ISO are both set on auto. What am I doing wrong?

May 2007 HelpLine

Making Workflow Work

    • Raw File Processing
    • The "Oh-Really?" Factor

March 26, 2007 HelpLine
Interpreting Interpolation
Q) When I'm resizing my images, I'm given several different options for interpolation. People tell me to use bicubic, but there are two sub-options. Which should I be using?

March 19, 2007 HelpLine

Dust In The Wind
Q) Now that I've switched over from film to digital, I'm fighting one problem that nobody told me about-namely, dust. Why didn't I have this problem with film?

March 12, 2007 HelpLine

Making Contact…Sheets
Q) I'm looking for a program that will permit me to make and print out proof sheets that I can file with my photo CDs. A long time ago I did this with my negatives and it was very helpful.

March 5, 2007 HelpLine

Playing Your Cards Right
Q) I've followed your recommendation about using a card reader instead of connecting my camera directly to my computer. But I'm not sure of formatting. It seems to be working fine. but I'm not sure I'm choosing the right option.

M. Donavan
Cincinnati, Ohio

February 26, 2007 HelpLine

Hyper About Hyperfocal
Q) I was out taking some photographs this weekend and a fellow who was nearby was suggesting that I should be setting my lens to a hyperfocal distance. I had no idea what he was talking about.

February 19, 2007 HelpLine
Examining EXIF
Q) I'm looking for the perfect photo organizer. Most of those I've tried, if you try to organize images by their date, want to use the date they get from the EXIF data for the image.


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