Tip of the Week

Turn A Hollow-Core Door Into A Long-Lasting Studio Reflector

How to DIY a versatile, rolling reflector that’s built to last
By William Sawalich
Foamcore and insulation sheeting make nice reflectors when you need something large—say, four feet or more in any dimension, and especially if you want a big ol' 4x8 sheet reflector. But the problem with these paper-based products is that they don't hold up well to use and abuse. So that's…

The One-Click Trick To Make Photoshop Adjustment Layers More Useful

A tiny little button makes a real big difference with Adjustment Layers
By William Sawalich
When working with Layers in Photoshop, one of the most powerful tools for lossless editing is the use of adjustment layers. Rather than actually changing the pixels in the content layer (i.e. altering the original image), you can use an adjustment layer to virtually put a filter over the layer…

Lightroom’s Adjustment Brush Auto Mask

Keep an eye out for unwanted artifacts from Lightroom’s automatic masking aid
By William Sawalich
Lightroom has a little tool called Automask that lives inside the Adjustment Brush. It's intended to help photographers by making their retouching jobs easier, automatically creating a virtual mask that limits adjustments to an automatically selected area. And while I like the idea of this tool a lot in theory,…

Make A Paint Chip Gray Card

Find a neutral gray paint chip and you’ve got an ideal, inexpensive, easily replaceable white balancing aid
By William Sawalich
The other day, as I was perusing paint chips while trying to select a color to paint my dining room, it occurred to me that these paint chips could be useful for photography. A truly neutral gray paper paint sample would make an ideal inexpensive (i.e. free) and very portable…

How To Photograph Basketball

Simple tools and techniques get you closer to the action than in any other sport
By William Sawalich
The NBA Playoffs are in full swing, so I thought why not offer some tips for photographing basketball. When I was a young photographer, there was nothing I enjoyed more than covering a high school or college basketball game. No sport puts you closer to the action with your camera,…

Understanding The Exposure Triangle

A look at the three camera controls that dictate exposure and how they work together
By William Sawalich
Switching the camera’s exposure controls from Auto to Manual for the first time is a big step. For beginning photographers ready to make that leap, all you need to know about exposure can be found in the exposure triangle. There are three camera controls that affect exposure: ISO, shutter speed…
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