- Five Habits Photographers Should Learn
- 23 Photos Taken a Split Second Before Disaster
- A Look at the New Nikon Df
Posted: 12 Nov 2013 04:31 PM PST
Photography is an art, similar to drawing or painting. There will always be those that are naturally gifted in one media or the other, and the rest of us have to work out ways to keep up. One of the easiest ways to match excellent photographers shot for shot is by adapting a few of their common practices. Here are five habits of great photographers, in no particular order:
Try Bracketing Your Shots
Bracketing is simply the act of taking various exposures of the same picture. Any time you’re taking pictures and the end result is important, you should bracket your shots by shooting one normal photo, then one below the recommended exposure as well as one above. This will give you more options for choosing the best picture and will also prevent over and under exposure. However, if you’re shooting with a digital camera there is no reason to bracket your shot as you don’t need to worry about burning your film.
Properly Care for Your Equipment
A camera lens will give you a near-exact representation of what you saw when you looked through it, but only if that lens is clean of debris. Although it is easy to touch up your images using a photo editor, it is easiest just to use a cleaning kit and properly clean your gear before shooting. Additionally, you should always keep your gear in a bag or case when not in use to prevent dust buildup or accidental damage. And, of course, make sure to charge that battery!
Make Your Image Tell a Story
One of the key differences between a good picture and a great photograph is that a photograph has a story to tell. Every shot you take should convey some sort of narrative with a beginning, middle, and end. Although this may seem like a daunting task, once you practice, it will become easier to frame your image so the story all comes together. When shooting a sequence of photographs, try to tie them all together with one theme; this will increase their emotional impact.
Most professional photographers agree that the less time spent in the editing room means that the better you did using your camera. By learning how to work with your camera to get the results you want, you’ll become a much better photographer than spending all your time editing. You should think of photo editing more as a safety net that’s used as a last resort and not something you depend upon to transform your images from bad to good.
Learn Your Craft
Like any skill, if you want to get good at something you have to invest time to learn it. This means that you should do activities like studying the works of great photographers, practice shooting as much as possible and taking classes or reading books about photography. The more you know about how photos work and what makes one better than the other, the more reliable you will become in creating great work. Another option is to consider joining a photo club or website like a photo forum where you can find useful tips.
There is no great mystery or untold secret to becoming a great photographer. The more you train your eyes to look at the world through a frame, the better you’ll get at spotting great photo opportunities. These five habits can help you to reach this point sooner, especially if you’re shooting as much as you possibly can. Practice may not make you perfect, but it will definitely make you better.
About the Author
Posted: 12 Nov 2013 02:06 PM PST
Painful, perplexing, terrifying, sometimes beautiful, here are a collection of moments that only a quick shutter speed could capture (for those of you reading this by email, the photo album can be seen here):
Posted: 12 Nov 2013 11:28 AM PST
Designed to Strike the Ideal Balance of Classic Iconic Style and Advanced Imaging Technology
MELVILLE, N.Y. – The new Nikon Df is a modern classic designed for those who have felt a connection to their camera, who revel in the idea of going out to photograph an unfamiliar location, and who know the effort and ultimate satisfaction that is part of getting the shot. Announced today, the Nikon Df is a unique, advanced-level D-SLR that harmonizes Nikon heritage and modern performance in a lightweight and very capable FX-format camera. The new Df pays homage to the enduring style and controls of Nikon's distinguished "F" series of 35mm film cameras, yet features technology similar to Nikon's professional flagship D4 D-SLR. Released alongside the similarly styled AF-S NIKKOR 50mm f/1.8G Special Edition lens, Nikon's newest FX-format D-SLR presents a versatile and reliable option to help passionate photographers truly achieve their creative vision. Amazon accepting pre-orders here: Nikon Df Pre-order
A Classically Styled, Thoroughly Modern Masterpiece
From a robust feel, to mechanical dials and finely detailed craftsmanship, the Df embodies the very best of Nikon's photographic legacy. The classically styled camera recalls design cues such as a recognizable pentaprism and top cover, which is now constructed of durable, lightweight magnesium alloy. The top of the camera features elegant yet sophisticated mechanical controls for settings, letting users feel the tactile reassurance of adjustments, such as a familiar click stop for shutter speed adjustment. Additional dedicated dials also control ISO, exposure compensation, release mode and exposure mode, while modern controls are also easily accessible. The intuitive control layout allows for quick and confident setting adjustment, yet retains a solid operational experience that "feels like a Nikon camera."
The Df has been designed with an emphasis on familiar intricate details made famous from previous generations, including the leather-textured top and grip, along with the body mounted shutter button with a threaded release port. The design also recalls the slenderness of the previous generation's cameras, making this the smallest and lightest FX-format camera in Nikon's lineup.
It isn't all about good looks though, as this enduring design is coupled with legendary performance to create a very capable and extremely appealing FX-format offering for professionals and enthusiasts. The 16.2-megapixel FX-format CMOS sensor of the Df is inherited from Nikon's professional flagship D-SLR, the D4. The large 36 x 23.9mm CMOS sensor is praised for its ability to produce amazing image quality in a wide variety of lighting conditions. Whether shooting landscapes, wildlife or weddings, the frames captured with the Df exhibit amazing clarity, accurate color and a broad dynamic range. In addition, Nikon's exclusive EXPEED 3 image processing engine helps propel image quality, yielding images with a natural color and depth, all while enhancing subtle and nuanced tones.
Additionally, like the professional Nikon D4, the Df performs well in a wide variety of challenging lighting conditions with an exceptionally wide ISO range from 100 to 12,800, expandable to a staggering ISO 204,800. The combination of low noise and wide range make this an appealing camera to take on the challenges faced by photojournalists and event photographers, as well as those who enjoy the pursuit of extracting otherwise impossible images using natural light.
A Feature Set for Passionate Photographers
The Nikon Df is engineered to enhance the experience of taking photos and represents a culmination of decades of experience and feedback from photographers in the field, the studio and the sidelines. From its proven AF system to modern connectivity and legacy lens compatibility, the Df contains the century's best photographic features for an enjoyable all-day shooting experience.
AF System: The convenience and precision of Nikon's 39-point AF system is proof-positive of the benefits of modern technology. With 39 selectable AF points throughout the frame for precise focus, the Df also features nine cross-type sensors, and seven AF points capable of working down to f/8. Users can also choose from a variety of AF area modes to match their shooting style: 9-point, 21-point, 39-point, 39-point with 3D Tracking and Auto Area AF.
Get the shot with 2016-Pixel 3D Matrix Metering and Scene Recognition System: This Nikon system analyzes each shooting scenario and determines proper camera settings, resulting in even exposures, accurate white balance and precise AF. To capture action sports, wildlife and other fast moving subjects, the Df has a continuous burst shooting rate of up to 5.5 frames-per-second (fps).
Compose with a 3.2-inch LCD Display and Glass Pentaprism Viewfinder: Users can easily compose through the high-resolution LCD screen or the bright optical viewfinder. The LCD screen has 921K-dot resolution, making it easy for users to adjust additional settings, review images or compose using Live View. Using the glass optical viewfinder, users will enjoy 100 percent accuracy and a bright field of view. What's more, the shooting data presented through the viewfinder has also been updated and digitized.
Connect and Share Instantly: Another modern touch allows users to connect and share their images instantly using the optional WU-1a Wireless Mobile Adapter*(1). By connecting to a mobile device, users can download and share images or remotely fire the camera.
Features for Creativity: Photographing dramatic monochrome or vivid landscapes is easier with Nikon's Picture Controls, which allow for the customization of color, saturation and tone. The Df also features built-in High Dynamic Range (HDR) to combine multiple shots with enhanced tonal range, and two to five-frame auto-bracketing. For maximum control, images can also be captured in JPEG, TIFF or RAW file formats.
Support for a Storied NIKKOR Legacy: In addition to being compatible with all current AF, AF-S, DX and AF-D NIKKOR lenses, the Df is also compatible with classic Ai and non-Ai NIKKOR glass. Thanks to a new metering coupling lever located on the bayonet, the user has the ability to once again enjoy their lens collections with renewed functionality. Full-aperture metering is also supported.
Accessory System Support: The Df is compatible with Nikon's Creative Lighting System (CLS), letting users take advantage of i-TTL exposure or fire multiple units remotely using a Speedlight commander. To remotely trigger the shutter, the camera also supports the new WR remote system, as well as the threaded AR-3 cable release, which screws in to the shutter button in the traditional style.
A Classic FX-Format Special Edition NIKKOR Prime
The new AF-S NIKKOR 50mm f/1.8G Special Edition lens is the result of classic NIKKOR styling combined with today's optics to create the ideal focal length companion lens for the Df. The design honors original NIKKOR Ai lenses, with colors, texture, and an aluminum mounting ring that is mated to the style of the Df. This lens is ideal for everyday portraiture, landscapes and casual photography, but offers a wide aperture and seven-blade diaphragm for natural image blur and a dramatic depth of field. Despite the timeless design, the 50mm f/1.8G is created with modern AF-S design benefits to give photographers rapid response, quiet operation and excellent sharpness and clarity throughout the frame.
Price and Availability
The Nikon Df will be available in late November 2013, invoking classic Nikon silver and black color schemes. The suggested retail price (SRP) of the Df (body only) will be $2,749.95, while the Df and 50mm f/1.8 Special Edition lens kit will have a SRP of $2,999.95. The AF-S NIKKOR 50mm f/1.8G lens will be sold separately for a SRP of $279.95. For an additional flair of nostalgic style, Nikon is also offering black or brown leather carrying cases, the CF-DC6B and CF-DC6S (pricing and availability to be announced). Amazon accepting pre-orders here: Nikon Df Pre-order
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