Monday, 19 May 2014

Tips For Successful Lighting in Photography

Tips For Successful Lighting in Photography

Link to PictureCorrect Photography Tips

Tips For Successful Lighting in Photography

Posted: 18 May 2014 04:29 PM PDT

In photography, it’s all about lighting. The most successful photographers are the ones most able to control, manipulate, and use it to capture what they see in their mind’s eye. There are generally 2 approaches when it comes to lighting:

lighting tips in photography

“Dog Walks Man in Central Park, NY” by Lightbender (Click Image to Find Photographer)

  1. Use what’s there, modify and adapt to it— this is primarily where most photographers start out.
  2. Come up with a totally staged pre-conceived vision and light the scene starting from scratch like working in a controlled environment of a studio–like an artist illustrating on a blank canvas.

In both instances the photographer must understand light well to “predict”, not only what the camera will capture, but also whether the image will reproduce faithfully in print.

The 1st approach requires subtlety. This means you may or may not choose to supplement the light already in the scene. This is usually how photojournalist work.

They often meter their scene after deciding where their subject will be, determine the number of f-stops between highlight and shadow. Then they boost the shadow area if there are important details there.

The key is to preserve the “mood” and “feel” of the scene. This approach usually requires little equipment since the photojournalist works mostly on location.

The second approach resembles how an artist “paints.” He paints his scene by lighting every element.

If he’s outdoors, and if he wants to create a picture that is natural, then his scene will have to appear to have just one dominant light source–like how our one sun lights our natural world.

The operative word here is “appear to have one dominant light source.” He will most likely use more than one light source because of the contrast, but his shadows are carefully controlled.


“The Channel” captured by Edcel Cabalan (Click Image to Find Photographer)

The ambient light is not a factor at all. It’s almost as if the photographer is working in a dimly lit room and he has to light everything in the scene.

By careful positioning of his lights and varying their intensity, he creates shadows and highlights selectively. How realistic or natural the scene looks depends his skill in execution and his conceptualized image.

Even though photography is a two-dimensional art form, good control of light creates 3-dimensions by giving pictures depth. The good use of shadow and highlights in a picture is what conveys depth.

A common misconception about “good lighting” is that there has to be a ton of it. Well, maybe not a ton, but an eye-squinting-tear-producing amount.

A scene that is so bright like at high noon tends to be problematic. Light levels with such intensity require small apertures so that invariably the photographer has to deal with too much depth-of-field.

So good light doesn’t necessarily mean an exposure of 1/2000 sec, at f/11, and ISO 100. It all depends on what you’re photographing. There is such a thing as too much depth-of-field.

If you’re photographing something that’s moving fast, and if your aim is to “freeze” the moving object, then in that particular instance, that suits your purposes, so it is good light. You’re able to use high shutter speeds to arrest that motion.

photo lighting

“Lone Haze” captured by Mazry (Click Image to Find Photographer)

That high noon light is probably only good for gunfights. There are very few instances when a photographer will choose that time of the day to schedule a shoot.

Well-lit photographs don’t usually happen by accident. If shooting in available light, you can bet the photographer planned to be at that very spot at that time, after doing some reconnaissance beforehand.

Possible places with good directional light which can give you a nice ambiance or mood are:

  • Doorways and windows
  • Reflected light e.g sunlight bouncing off the water in late evening or early morning
  • Incandescent light in homes.
  • Candlelight and campfire light

About the Author:
A Riverside-based freelance photographer, Peter Phun, who also teaches photography at Riverside City College. He does portraits, weddings and editorial work. He writes about photography, Macs and the internet. He also designs websites and is a stay-at-home dad.

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Article from: PictureCorrect Photography Tips

Interesting Photo of the Day: Amazing Border Collie Portrait Shows the Breed’s Intelligence

Posted: 18 May 2014 02:31 PM PDT

More than perhaps any other dog breed, Border Collies are highly task-oriented and need to experience a sense of purpose in order to thrive. Indeed, they tend to be notorious workaholics. This, in addition to their intelligence and agility, suits Border Collies to an active working lifestyle—and especially to guarding and herding livestock.

The amazing intelligence of the breed can be clearly seen in the eyes and posture of this Border Collie named Scully whose portrait was captured by photographer James Walker, her caretaker:

australian shepherd dog puppy cute snow winter portrait james walker studios

“Along the Way” by James Walker. (Via Imgur. Click to see full size.)

Scully is actually one of Walker’s two Border Collie companions, and it’s clear that the dogs are some of Walker’s favorite art subjects. Images of one or both canines appear in at least half of Walker’s 138 website portfolio images (see them here) and dominate his online print store selection (see it here) and the photo slideshow on his biography page (see it here).

As something of a documentarian, Walker considers photography, and his art in general, as a means of experiencing life to the fullest extent possible and then recording meaningful moments in a way that causes viewers to reflect deeply on themes like time, adventure, loyalty, and love.

“Snapping photos and drawing pictures and painting and collaging and collecting and gathering information is my way of being enveloped in every second of the day,” says Walker. “I try to take as little for granted as possible… making art is the very thing that gets me out of bed in the morning, drives me through the day, pushes me past all obstacles, and propels me to explore.”

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Article from: PictureCorrect Photography Tips

Top Baby Photographer Shares Her Story and Tips (Video)

Posted: 18 May 2014 01:04 PM PDT

People recognize Anne Geddes’ work long before they recognize her. Known for her iconic baby portraits (you know, those cute baby in the flower pot photos?), Geddes has sold more than 19 million photography books in 84 countries. CBC This Morning’s Lee Woodruff talks to Geddes about her new book, “Little Blessings,” her career, being a mother, and what it all means:

Geddes has been photographing babies since the 80s, and has since become to be known as the world’s most famous baby photographer. She started gaining major recognition with her first coffee table book, “Down in the Garden” in 1996. The concept for the book came from a spur of the moment photograph Geddes took—the first baby in the flower pot.

She says that image was a total accident. According to Geddes, she does not have a green thumb; quite the opposite really, when she looks at plants they wither and die. So, one day, long ago, she had an empty flower pot sitting in her studio. A mother came in with her six-month-old baby who was wearing a fluffy little woolen hat and immediately Anne thought she would look like a lovely, little cactus if she sat her in the flower pot.

iconic baby photo

While “Down in the Garden” became a New York Times Best Seller and launched Geddes into baby photography stardom, she had previously had quite a bit of success with calendars she printed each year. Her calendars are super popular today and 2015 will mark the 24th continuous edition. But, her photography career actually began at home, with her own children. When her daughter, Stephanie, was just a baby, Geddes took a picture of her to use for the family Christmas card. It was a hit with friends, who began asking for more.

Today, Geddes’ two daughters, Stephanie and Kelly, are both photographers and sometimes work with their mother. Geddes finds it incredibly meaningful to work with her daughters. In her new book, “Little Blessings,” she pairs some of her iconic—and some new—photos with her favorite quotes about motherhood. She thinks every mother will be able to identify with it.

“These are the sentiments I had when I brought our two girls home for the first time.”

anne geddes little blessings

When it comes to the ins and outs of a baby photo shoot, Geddes says people think it tends to be chaotic and noisy, but it doesn’t have to be. In fact, she says it’s never really like that.

“If everything revolves around them and they’re the ultimate egos in the room, then everything tends to go just fine.”

Tips for Baby Photographers

Geddes has said that the best time to photograph a baby is in the morning when they’re well-rested. Other than that, here are a few tips to keep in mind if you’re a baby portrait photographer:

  • You have to be really fast, otherwise the babies get bored or fussy.
  • A typically shoot will take about half an hour, and to make sure it goes quickly and smoothly, you should set up your studio with props, lighting, and everything in place beforehand.
  • Keep parents nearby to help out with expressions and keep the baby comfortable.

And maybe most importantly, we think you should take a page out of Geddes’ book—be passionate!

Go to full article: Top Baby Photographer Shares Her Story and Tips (Video)

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Article from: PictureCorrect Photography Tips

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