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Master the Art of Shooting Sunrise and Sunset

We hear it all the time: sunrise and sunset are two of the best times to shoot because of the quality of sunlight during these “magic hours”

We hear it all the time: sunrise and sunset are two of the best times to shoot because of the quality of sunlight during these “magic hours.” But what, exactly makes these times so special? More important, what makes shooting at the beginning of the day different from shooting at the end of the day? And how does the light change during the... Read more

Ten Reasons To Use A Tripod Other Than Long Exposures

Stop me if you’ve heard this one before: You should use a tripod when you shoot with slow shutter speeds to make long exposures

Stop me if you’ve heard this one before: You should use a tripod when you shoot with slow shutter speeds to make long exposures. I know, tripods are old news. But, there are many more reasons to use a tripod other than when you’re using slow shutter speeds. In fact, here are 10 great reasons to use a tripod for better pictures other than... Read more

His Pictures Look Better Than Mine! It Must Be The Camera!

I recently received an email from an old friend who is also a new photographer

I recently received an email from an old friend who is also a new photographer. She was working on an assignment and had a second photographer working with her. What she noticed was at the end of the day, the other photographer’s pictures seemed better than her own. “Her pictures seem so much brighter,” she said, “with less noise... Read more
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Multi-Image Compositing Tips – Part Two

Last week we covered my favorite in-camera tips for making multiple image composites

Last week we covered my favorite in-camera tips for making multiple image composites. Assuming you’ve followed that great advice and created separate individual images that are all nicely aligned and ready to make the merge into a single composite, you’ll have an easier time compositing those exposures in the computer. But still, you’ll... Read more

Tips and Tricks for Multiple Exposure Compositing

There’s an old saying that it’s always better to get a shot right in the camera whenever possible, as opposed to fixing it in post

There’s an old saying that it’s always better to get a shot right in the camera whenever possible, as opposed to fixing it in post. And this is certainly true, I’ve found, in most circumstances…But, not all the time. I also know that there are certain situations in which a little bit of planned post-production wizardry can help you... Read more

Build Your Own Strip Light

There are all sorts of studio gadgets and light modifiers that I would love to add to my arsenal

There are all sorts of studio gadgets and light modifiers that I would love to add to my arsenal, but unfortunately I just don’t have the budget for them all. At the top of that list is a set of strip lights. Strip lights are softboxes a few feet long and a few inches wide, and they’re designed to create a fairly narrow light that still... Read more

Portrait Posing Guide

The great thing about photography is that there are very few hard and fast rules

The great thing about photography is that there are very few hard and fast rules, especially when it comes to the creative, compositional, aesthetic side of things. But there are definitely guidelines that have proven time and again to lead to better photographs. For instance, there are compositional “rules” that we learn early on—like... Read more

The Most Important Flash Tip

For many of us, when we purchased our first DSLR, we also acquired a few accessories

For many of us, when we purchased our first DSLR, we also acquired a few accessories. Commonly included in that kit is a handheld flash, or speedlight. These flashes mount to the hot-shoe on top of the camera, and are brilliant devices that communicate with the camera via TTL metering to deliver accurate exposures almost every time. But, many new photographers... Read more

Use A Polarizer On A Cloudy Day

Why do you put a polarizer on your lens? Everybody knows the answer to this question, right?

Why do you put a polarizer on your lens? Everybody knows the answer to this question, right? You do it when you want to make blue skies on sunny days look really deep blue. Oh, and you can also use polarizers to eliminate strong reflections, from window glass or even lakes and streams. Those are probably two of the most popular answers, but the truth... Read more

Mastering Intentional Blur

Most photographers would probably agree that blurry images are bad

Most photographers would probably agree that blurry images are bad. Whether they’re caused by poor focus, camera shake or a fast-moving subject, blur is not usually desirable. But, in some situations blur can actually be a valuable story-telling tool. It can demonstrate the speed of a fast-moving subject, or communicate anxiety with a bit of camera... Read more

Archiving With Lightroom

When I began using Adobe Photoshop Lightroom as my primary digital image management tool, I wondered how I would feel about the catalogs I was creating after a few years had passed

When I began using Adobe Photoshop Lightroom as my primary digital image management tool, I wondered how I would feel about the catalogs I was creating after a few years had passed. Well, a few years have passed and I couldn’t be happier with Lightroom’s organizational capabilities. One of my favorite features is the way the program allows... Read more

Make High-Key Portraits Indoors And Out

When you’re photographing a person and you realize that the subject and background are both presenting you with bright tones, you may want to consider making a high-key portrait

When you’re photographing a person and you realize that the subject and background are both presenting you with bright tones, you may want to consider making a high-key portrait. High-key images are photographs in which almost all of the values in the scene remain light and bright, with minimal deep shadows and very few dark areas. This is a great... Read more
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