Handy little video which explains colour depth, ie the amount of data that can be used for each pixel.
An amazing photographer and an amazing story.
Just a quick video with some great travel photo tips!
Google has a new standalone camera app.
Here are a couple photos I just took with a Samsung Galaxy S III (Intl) – i9300 running Cyanogenmod.
For some reason the app scaled down the “blured” version but here they are untouched straight out of the app for the sake of comparison.
The blur actually looks decent!
Photo with blur feature on:
Photo with blur feature off:
Got a spare $30,000 burning a hole in your pocket? Take a look at the Rolls Royce of cameras, the Hasselblad H5D-50c:
Joe McNally discusses how he captured some dramatic panoramic portraits using a beauty dish and film.
Adobe Photoshop Lightroom is the best photography post processing software as of this writing. It will allow you do everything you need to manage, process, and edit your photographs. Lightroom saves you from ever having to dive into Photoshop. We highly recommend this piece of software and use it heavily.
See Also: Free Adobe Tutorial videos.
Camera Shake, a leading cause of bad photos
Camera shake is like the gingivitis of photography. When you’re dealing with camera shake you’re dealing with images that are not in focus or are totally blurry. Most often with images that suffer from Camera Shake the image is just slightly out of focus.
Example of camera shake:
(photo by itchys)
Notice how the image is just barely out of focus but it’s far enough out to ruin the image. The horror!
Why does camera shake happen?
When you take a photo there is a moment when the shutter is open and light hits your camera’s sensor or film. If the shutter is open for a long time and you move your camera while it’s open you will most likely get a blurry photo. While the shutter is open and you are holding the camera tiny movements in your hands and arms will make your image slightly blurry. In photography the shutter is very very fast so a long time in this context could even be less than a second.
There are a whole host of ways to avoid camera shake. Here are a few:
One method would be to shoot at a faster shutter speed. In some cases to achieve these higher shutter speeds you will have to shoot higher ISOs
Shoot at Higher ISOs
Obviously the side effect of this is that you’ll get more noise and grain in your image but I’ll take a noisy image that’s in focus over a blurry image any day of the week.
Use a Better Lens
Another option would be to shoot with a faster lens. If you shoot with a better lens you can get away with more. So if all things are equal you can capture more light with a better lens. As such you’ll have less camera shake.
Get a Better Camera
A camera with a high quality imaging sensor can almost always shoot sharper images in lower light. Before anything else gets written here I should note that ‘getting a better camera’ should almost NEVER be a solution to a problem in photography. I just needed something to fill out this list! In all seriousness though a better camera will help in this situation so get yourself a better camera.
Use A Tripod!
The most obvious solution is to just use a damn tripod! As a general rule you almost always get sharper images when you use a tripod. The tripod is a stable platform for your camera and it does not move and it will eliminate camera shake. Don’t have a tripod? Go buy a tripod.
Hold The Camera Steadier
When you don’t have a tripod or can’t use one just take a moment and control your breathing and concentrate on being still. Take a deep breath or two. Compose yourself if you will.
Make a Tripod
You don’t have to carry around your bulky tripod. You can just make your own tripod out of string!
Hold the Barrel
Support your camera by holding the barrel of your lens and putting your elbow on something like your knee or something solid.
Bring Your Elbows In
Bring your elbows in and rest them on your stomach/chest. That way you’ll be making a tripod between your two hands and your eye pressed against the viewfinder.
Make it Art!
Just like most artefacts and technical screw ups in photography you can make it into an art form. People have taken this artifact of photography and produced some very interesting images. It’s like the rule of thirds, you should really learn it before you start to break it as a rule.
Examples of camera shake (or motion blur) being used creatively:
photo by unukorno
photo by ninette_luz
To learn how to use motion and the blur effect creatively take a look at our article: How To Show Motion in Photography By Panning
Put Your Camera on a Stable Surface
You can really get away with anything that is stable and doesn’t move. Just be careful because cameras have been known to fall of things you might have thought we’re stable.
Lean On Me. And I’ll be your friend
Just like Bill Withers suggests, just lean on something. If there is a post or a tree or something right at the position you want to shoot from then lean on it. This essentially removes a great deal of the movement that is occurring in your body all the time
Geting closer to your subject means you won’t have to zoom as much. The less you have to use your zoom, the less your lens will shake.
Stop Drop and Shoot!
If you can lie on the ground. The all but eliminates the movement of your body and will result in sharper images.
A Simple Rule
As a really rough mental guideline ensure that your shutter speed is never slower than half the focal lenght of your zoom lens. So if you’re shooting with a 300mm lens you don’t really want your shutter speed to drop below 150/sec. This is an very very rough tool but it helps you keep camera shake in mind.
Now get out there and shoot some razor sharp images.
Let’s set the record straight.
There is no best way to learn photography. There are plenty of ways to learn photography and there really is no perfect answer this question. Everyone has their own learning style, as such there is no ‘one size fits all’ solution.
Some people teach themselves, others benefit greatly from a formal education. Others choose to get best of both worlds by learning photography online and teaching themselves.
List of Ways To Learn Photography:
Read some photography books
Learn photography from the masters
Read photography ebooks
Learn with a group of friends
Use Youtube videos
Attend university and study photography
Go to a local college
Go to a local photography course
Take a one day course
Learn from blogs and photo sites
Learn from an online photography course
Become active on a photography forum
Simple trial and error
Just shoot lots of photographs
Attend weekend courses
The list could go on and on. The main thing is that nobody can tell you what is best for you!
What you should really be asking:
If you want to learn photography, ask yourself what is the most fun you’ve had learning something? And then try to replicate that. When something is fun people tend to learn quickly. Also as yourself what format do you prefer when learning? Some people prefer the written word and others are more visual. Then choose your method(s) accordingly. A hybrid approach is really great. Just combine a few theoretical and practical approaches and you’ll be all set.
Essential To Learning Photography:
This really applies to anything you want to get good at but it really works with photography.
- Have fun
- Practice hard
Without the hard work of practice and the fun of learning you won’t get anywhere.
Photography is a Life-long Journey:
One of the most fascinating aspects of photography is that you really never stop learning. Not only does the art form evolve over time but you get older and you attain a different perspective. Your early photos will be embarrassingly bad but they may be more interesting in a different context. What’s more, the technology of photography changes regularly as well. There is always something new to learn! How great is that?!