Using Snapshots And Virtual Copies In Lightroom

Built-in tools that make undoing your work and creating editing variations a breeze
Lightroom Snapshots and Virtual Copies
Many times when working on editing digital image files in Lightroom, you may find yourself at a point you might eventually like to come back to, almost like saving a video game to protect your progress in case the zombies up ahead eat your brain. In Lightroom, saving your work in a particular state is done by taking a snapshot of the current state.... Read more

Are DSLRs Still Relevant?

Why DSLRs still rule (and when they really don’t)
DSLRs
There are more camera options available today than ever before, which means a lot of good reasons why even serious photographers should consider compact mirrorless and point-and-shoot cameras. But the DSLR is still in many ways the king of the hill. Here’s why you should think of the DSLR first when considering a new camera, and a few reasons why... Read more

Don’t Get Scammed!

There are photographer-specific email scams out there. Here’s how to spot them.
Tip Of The Week
There are a lot of bad people out there, trying to trick you out of your hard-earned dollars—Nigerian royalty, a long-lost friend stuck in Istanbul, work-from-home scams and more. There’s even a type of scam out there specific to photographers. When the bad people find out you’re a photographer—by scraping your email from your photo-related... Read more

Using Highlight Tone Priority

This Canon DSLR setting helps rein in overexposed highlights to prevent the permanent loss of detail
highlight tone priority
Most Canon DSLRs made in the last several years have included a setting called Highlight Tone Priority. Found in the camera menu near High ISO Noise Reduction and other exposure controls, Highlight Tone Priority sounds like it might be the perfect thing to solve a big digital capture problem—overexposed highlights. And it is, but only to a certain... Read more

Why You Should Meter Your Portrait Lighting

How to use a handheld light meter to help you craft a perfect portrait lighting ratio
Tip Of The Week: Light Meter Portraits
Anybody can be a photographer these days. After all, pointing your camera at a subject with enough frequency is bound to eventually lead to an acceptable picture, particularly if you’re reviewing the LCD after every shot and adjusting accordingly. But haphazardly hoping you find your way into a nice picture isn’t a great way to stand out as a talented... Read more

Make Your Own Lens Flare In Photoshop

Add to the look of authenticity in your images with a bit of fabricated lens flare
create lens flare using Photoshop
Last week we discussed how shooting into a backlit situation produces interesting lighting almost without fail. One of the most interesting results of shooting into a light source is lens flare. Whether you’ve shot an image with lens flare that just isn’t quite appealing enough, or whether you want to capitalize on the increased “authenticity”... Read more

Shoot Into The Light

Everything is better with backlight
backlighting
Everything is better with backlight. That’s a lesson I learned 20-plus years ago shooting sports, and I put it to use today for everything from tabletop food photography to portraits and events. Why is backlighting so great, and how do you work with it? Read on to find out. Edge Separation. That lesson I learned 20-something years ago was about edge... Read more

Tips for Freezing Fast-Moving Action

How to ensure a speedy subject will be sharp in your pictures
Fast-Moving Action - Skier
When a subject is moving fast, it can be difficult to ensure they are tack-sharp in your pictures. Here are some techniques, from basic to advanced, that help eliminate motion blur and ensure sharp subjects even when they’re moving fast. Use a fast shutter speed. Okay, I know this one’s obvious, but for the newbies, it’s an important reminder.... Read more

To Find Great Light, Look For Its Edges

Transitions from light to shadow offer great lighting opportunities
Edges of Light - Fence shadows
A great moment in a great location with a great subject might make for a great photo. But for it to be one of those really special “best of the best” photographs, it absolutely has to have great light. In fact, I would argue that great light can be enough to turn an otherwise humdrum moment into a photograph that’s pretty special—just on the... Read more

Identifying And Repairing Banding

Eliminate this artifact that renders continuous tones and gradations in a blotchy manner.
Repairing Banding - Banding example
One of the most annoying digital-specific image problems is the banding that can appear in areas of solid color, such as skies and studio backgrounds. Banding typically occurs when a color is graduated across a number of shades—like light blue to dark blue in a sky. In a continuous tone image, the transition from one tone to the next is seamless.... Read more

Is The New iPhone 7 Plus A Must-Have For Photographers?

Photographer-friendly features make this smartphone uniquely qualified for taking pictures
iPhone 7 Plus
After a few years of abuse, my old phone was on its last legs when Apple announced the new iPhone 7 and 7 Plus this summer. My old phone limped into the fall when I finally got my hands on the iPhone 7 Plus, and boy was I surprised by just how capable the camera is. I never thought I’d seriously see a smartphone camera as a useful photographic device.... Read more

The Benefits Of Low Camera Angles

When eye level just won’t cut it, getting low is a great way to make your pictures stand out.
Low Camera Angle
Robert Capa famously said that if your pictures aren’t good enough, you’re not close enough. To that, I’d like to add that you also might not be low enough. A low camera angle, in my opinion, is one of the easiest ways to make a dull photo more interesting and to simplify a photo by eliminating some of the layers of depth between subject and... Read more
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