When I started out in photography shooting slide film, I was trained to carry two "mandatory" filters: a polarizer and a set of graduated neutral density filters (ND-grads). Polarizing filters not only increase contrast in skies, but they are indispensible in removing glare and reflections from water and foliage. ND-grad filters offer a way of compressing tones in scenes with a large dynamic range.
I was reading a forum post by someone, who said, "I prefer prime lenses, and would rather zoom with my feet." I also read a blog post by someone that was comparing lenses of two different focal lengths, and they said, "If I want a wider angle, I'll just back up." Now, of course we've heard these references to "zooming with our feet" for years, but does it really work? We'll explore that in today's blog post.
One of the limitations of today's digital cameras is that they cannot capture the dynamic range of the human eye. Indeed, our eyes are very sensative organs and have much more latitude than an imaging sensor. Back in the film days, we used to dodge and burn accordingly to get what we wanted. But these days, we just create a High Dynamic Range (HDR) photo. In the video below, the experts over at Kelby Training give us an intro to this process and show us how it can be useful in practical situations.
Take a look at the video after hitting the read and discuss button and for more in-depth training please visit Kelbytraining.com. They also have full one day seminars at Kelbytraininglive.com.
Outdoor photographers are trained to recognize good light. For most situations, this means the “golden times” right after sunrise and before sunset, and sometimes the pastel light just before dawn and at dusk. Of course, depending on your latitude, the “golden hour” can sometimes be more like the “golden ten minutes.” Other times, sunrises and sunsets just don’t happen. Clouds in the wrong place on the horizon can kill your chance at amazing light, and weather conditions are often unpredictable, as my students discovered a few weeks ago in South Dakota, where we got fogged in until after 10AM one day.
I doubt that I am the only one that becomes obsessive when it comes to packing for a photo workshop. It may seem peculiar that a man whose profession it is to coordinate photography workshops here in Iceland, and who rarely—if ever—attends a workshop as a student, would be writing on this topic.
For many years, we've been told that color casts—those shifts in color towards blue or yellow—are a bad thing and should be corrected at all costs. In the film days we used color-correction (CC) filters to battle them and, in the digital age, most choose to set their cameras to auto-white-balance (AWB), in effect telling the camera to detect and neutralize color casts automatically. After all, neutral whites and lack of color casts are desirable and natural, right? Wrong!
The off camera flash is one of the most versatile pieces of equipment in our camera bags. It can serve as our main light source, an accent light, or be used to simply fill in shadow areas of a high contrast scene. Recently I have been experimenting using the flash to illuminate foreground subjects in the landscape. I first came up with the idea when photographing a lava beach in Hawaii.
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