June 2007 HelpLine

Q) I’m going on the trip of a lifetime in a few months and I was looking to stock up on memory cards so I don’t have to bring my laptop with me. With prices coming down and card sizes going up, I thought I’d have an easy decision. When I got to the store, I became confused. There used to be just one flavor of SD; now there’s SDHC. Should I try out the new cards?

• Insecure About SDHC • A Reminder To Back Up ———– Insecure About SDHC Q) I’m going on the trip of a lifetime in a few months and I was looking to stock up on memory cards so I don’t have to bring my laptop with me. With prices coming down and card sizes going up, I thought I’d have an easy decision.... Read more

Fire In The Sky

We all love watching sunsets, looking at pictures of sunsets and, of course, photographing sunsets! The warm colors—deep shades of red, orange and yellow—evoke feelings of peace and tranquility and a sense of awe at nature’s wonders.

We all love watching sunsets, looking at pictures of sunsets and, of course, photographing sunsets! The warm colors—deep shades of red, orange and yellow—evoke feelings of peace and tranquility and a sense of awe at nature’s wonders. In this column, I’ll share with you a few Photoshop Elements techniques for improving on Mother Nature’s... Read more

May 29, 2007 HelpLine


Q) I see all of those neat shots of waterfalls, where the water looks so strange. How can I do that? 

Q) I see all of those neat shots of waterfalls, where the water looks so strange. How can I do that?  Scott D., Rochester, NY A) What you’re seeing is water captured with a slow shutter speed. If you want to do that yourself, first you need to use a tripod, as the slow shutter speed requires a firmly supported camera. Because you’re... Read more

May 14, 2007 HelpLine


Q) At what point during image editing should I be sharpening? I’ve experimented with doing it while processing in Adobe Camera Raw, but I’m just not sure.

Q) At what point during image editing should I be sharpening? I’ve experimented with doing it while processing in Adobe Camera Raw, but I’m just not sure. Mark T., Via the Internet A) Sharpening should be one of the last things you do. How much sharpening you do will depend on your final image output size. Since you might be outputting... Read more

May 7, 2007 HelpLine


Q) I know you’ve answered this in the past, I but can’t seem to find my issue. I want to get a polarizer for my camera. Which type should I get?

Q) I know you’ve answered this in the past, I but can’t seem to find my issue. I want to get a polarizer for my camera. Which type should I get? Lou K., Santa Fe, New Mexico A) There are two choices for polarizing filters: linear and circular. Both achieve the same effect, and you’d be hard pressed to look at an image and tell... Read more

Make Your Best Prints Ever

One of the great joys resulting from the change to digital compared to shooting film is the ability to get great photo prints optimized for the subject and photographer. Everyone who used to try to get a good, custom print from a slide or negative knows what a challenge that used to be. There were multiple visits to the lab when an image didn’t print right and had to be reprinted. Or often, you’d just accept the print as is because it was “good enough,” and any changes weren’t worth the back-and-forth with the lab. You probably know what I’m talking about.

This Article Features Photo Zoom One of the great joys resulting from the change to digital compared to shooting film is the ability to get great photo prints optimized for the subject and photographer. Everyone who used to try to get a good, custom print from a slide or negative knows what a challenge that used to be. There were multiple... Read more

April 30, 2007 HelpLine

Q) What’s the best way to control noise when shooting? I recently took some photos of the Northern Lights and the results were very noisy.

Q) What’s the best way to control noise when shooting? I recently took some photos of the Northern Lights and the results were very noisy. Steven J., Via the Internet A) Headphones? (Sorry, couldn’t resist!) There are three ways to control noise when capturing images. The first is to use the lowest ISO setting you can. The ISO setting... Read more

Digital Image Enhancement With Adobe Camera Raw

Adobe Camera Raw rocks! RAW shooters know that. But get this-the new version of Adobe Camera Raw in Photoshop CS3 isn’t only for RAW shooters and wannabe RAW shooters who may have been intimidated by RAW image processing. This image enhancement tool is for all digital photographers, JPEG and TIFF shooters included. You see, the new Adobe Camera Raw (ACR), with all of its creative controls, actually lets you process JPEG and TIFF files, too. Who would have ever thought?

Adobe Camera Raw rocks! RAW shooters know that. But get this-the new version of Adobe Camera Raw in Photoshop CS3 isn’t only for RAW shooters and wannabe RAW shooters who may have been intimidated by RAW image processing. This image enhancement tool is for all digital photographers, JPEG and TIFF shooters included. You see, the new Adobe Camera... Read more

April 23, 2007 HelpLine


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.

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... Read more

April 16, 2007 HelpLine


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?

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... Read more

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.

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. J. James Austin, Texas A) As image sizes keep increasing and memory cards decrease in cost, more... Read more

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?

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... Read more
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