This article by Chase Guttman, an award-winning travel photographer, whose love for travel and adventure has allowed him to photograph his experiences in over 40 countries, on the Lightstalking website is on the button, I don’t think I can disagree with any of his points.
Some might argue the point that photography is an art form. Training your eye to see the world and translating your perspective visually takes time and patience. Yet, there’s also technique involved in creating arresting images. There are ways to quickly improve your photography and impact your creative vision. Let’s take a look at a few of them.
Here are just a couple of the points Chase makes
1. Read The Manual. Resist the impulse to cavalierly toss your manual in the trash as it holds a plethora of knowledge. For savvy shooters, manuals are the holy grail of photography books. They teach us the functions, capabilities and basics of our most important piece of equipment. The camera manual should be the bible for your gear. I recommend placing it in your camera bag. It will be worth the extra weight.
You could take our Understanding Your Digital SLR Course which would also help
3. Lighting Lessons in a Flash. Beginners seem to misunderstand the magic of a flash. Keep in mind that most flashes illuminate only about ten feet in front of you. Furthermore, there are two main ways to optimally use flash — flash fill and bounce flash. In flash fill, you use the light source to attempt to fill the shadows created by natural lighting sources such as the midday sun. Bounce flash on the other hand is when the flash’s light is bounced off a wall or surface so it lights an indoor room evenly. To take better pictures, try to diffuse your flash by either aiming the light away from the subject or by using gels to minimize the light’s strength. Harsh or strong light isn’t kind on a subject’s face. Additionally, if the light isn’t diffused you may experience flash blow out, where your subject is a pitch white color and there’s a lack of highlights in your image. For maximum creativity and flexibility purchase an external flash.
We completely agree with this and have a course designed specifically to help people make better use of flash in their photography, here is a link to that course
©Keith Barnes 2012
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Today is sunny as was yesterday and we are promised more of the same over the weekend. So if you are taking portraits outside you may wonder how you can best reduce shadows on your subjects face. On our DSLR and Portrait courses we explain this in detail however if you just cannot wait here is a tutorial from Cambridge in colour, a great site with technically excellent tutorials, whilst you are there check out Sean McHugh’s tutorials on HDR and Monitor calibration. So fill flash and or a reflector
Here are a couple of pictures to explain the effect and here is the article from Cambridge In Colour
I find this technique particularly useful at weddings. I don’t want my subjects standing in the full glare of the sun, eyes squinting, so I position them with their backs to the sun and use fill flash to kill the shadows. You have to be careful about lens flare but the results can be spectacular
Keith Barnes Wedding Photography
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