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Updated: 4 hours 38 min ago

Neutral Density Filters: Everything You Need to Know

Sun, 09/05/2021 - 06:00

The post Neutral Density Filters: Everything You Need to Know appeared first on Digital Photography School. It was authored by Andrew S. Gibson.

What are neutral density filters, and how can they improve your photography?

In this article, I share everything you need to know about ND filters, including basic instructions, specific gear recommendations, plus some helpful advice along the way.

So if you want to know how to use a neutral density filter, when to use an ND filter, or why to use an ND filter, you’ve come to the right place.

Let’s dive in, starting with a simple definition:

What is a neutral density filter?

A neutral density filter blocks light, which is why it’s sometimes referred to as sunglasses for your lens. The result? Less light passes through the lens to reach the camera’s sensor.

In other words, a neutral density filter is a dark piece of glass that goes in front of (or behind, in some special circumstances) your lens.

Different neutral density filters offer different levels of light-blocking power, generally measured in stops of light. Typical ND filter strengths are one stop (written as “0.3” or “ND2”), two stops (written as “0.6” or “ND4”), three stops (written as “0.9” or “ND8”), six stops (written as “1.8” or “ND64”) and ten stops (written as “3.0” or “ND1024”).

Some manufacturers even make neutral density filters that block 16 stops of light or more, although these are specialty items and infrequently used by the average photographer (professional or otherwise).

Note that the higher the ND filter strength, the more light that gets blocked. So an ND2 filter, which blocks one stop of light, pales in comparison to an ND64 filter and its six-stop light-blocking capabilities.

The photo below shows a ten stop neutral density filter mounted on the front of a lens. As you can see, the filter is nearly opaque; once it’s added to your setup, you won’t be able to see through the camera viewfinder.

Why should you use ND filters in your photography?

ND filters block light, yet photographers generally want more light, not less. So why should you consider using an ND filter?

Well, as it turns out, more light is good…most of the time. Occasionally, though, you’ll find that you have too much light to work with, which is where ND filters come in handy.

Specifically, you can use neutral density filters in two helpful ways:

  1. To achieve a wide aperture in bright sunlight
  2. To slow down your shutter speed in the daytime

Let’s take a look at each of these effects in turn:

Using ND filters to achieve a wide aperture

As you may be aware, wide apertures create beautiful blurry background bokeh that makes the subject pop off the page (portrait photographers love this!).

Unfortunately, when the light is strong, a wide aperture will let in too much light, resulting in overexposure. So the blur-happy photographer is either forced to wait until the light dies down, or must use a narrow aperture and sacrifice their beautiful wide-aperture backgrounds.

Except there’s another option:

The ND filter.

It’ll fit over the lens and block out some of the bright light. That way, you can use a wide aperture to achieve your desired blur effect without overexposing the shot.

Using ND filters to slow down your shutter speed

Landscape photographers use long exposures to create blurry, stretchy clouds, ethereal atmosphere, and still water.

But to create a long exposure, you generally need a shutter speed of a second or longer, which is pretty much impossible to do in the middle of the day without dramatic overexposure.

That’s where ND filters come in. You can use your ND filter to block the light, which in turn allows for beautiful long exposures of landscapes.

In fact, I’d say that this function – for long exposures in the landscape – is probably the most common reason to see an ND filter on a photographer’s lens.

For example, this photo was taken with a 1/125s shutter speed and no ND filter:

But I wanted blur in the water, so I added an ND filter and turned that exposure time into a whopping 210 seconds. Here’s the resulting shot:

When should you use ND filters?

As you’ve probably gathered, neutral density filters are especially useful for portrait photography, especially portraits done in bright sunlight. They’re also highly useful for landscape photography – if your goal is to blur a moving subject, an ND filter can probably make it happen.

However, you can certainly use ND filters in other scenarios. For instance, an architectural photographer might want to blur the clouds when photographing buildings or even home exteriors. An abstract photographer might want to blur water when photographing on the beach. And a videographer might want to keep their aperture wide while filming in the sun.

In each of the above cases, an ND filter is the easiest way to achieve the photographer’s artistic goals.

Neutral density filters vs graduated neutral density filters

There are two popular types of neutral density filters:

Standard ND filters.

And graduated neutral density filters (also known as “GND filters”).

So what’s the difference?

Neutral density filters block light evenly across the frame. Graduated neutral density filters, on the other hand, block light across just part of the frame. Half the filter is clear, half is opaque, and you get a graduated area in between.

GND filters are designed to handle uneven exposures. If you’re photographing a sunset with a bright sky and a dark foreground, the darker portion of the GND filter will dial back the sunset, while the lighter portion will do nothing. That way, you get a well-exposed sky and a well-exposed foreground in the same photo. Make sense?

I used a GND filter to deal with the bright sky and darker foreground.

The photo below shows a two-stop graduated neutral density filter in a square filter holder. The top half of the filter is dark (to block light) and the bottom is clear:

In general, graduated filters are used by landscape photographers to deal with tricky sky-foreground lighting conditions. And unlike neutral density filters, their purpose isn’t to slow down the shutter speed or widen the aperture – instead, it’s simply about blocking out a too-powerful sky.

How to use neutral density filters: the basics

Now I’ll share a quick ND filter tutorial for portrait and landscape photography.

ND filters for portraits

Using ND filters to create wide-aperture portraits is simple.

Just choose a relatively weak ND filter (in the one-stop to three-stop range). Mount it in front of your lens. And take photos the way you normally would, except with greater latitude when choosing the aperture.

If you still can’t get the aperture you’re after, then you can always swap out your original ND filter for a stronger option.

Just make sure to watch the light carefully. If the sun goes behind clouds, you may need to take the filter off the front of your lens to get the shots you want.

ND filters for landscapes

Using an ND filter to capture slow-shutter landscape photos can take careful technique, especially if you’re using a strong filter (e.g., 10 stops or 16 stops).

As mentioned above, it’s tough to see through a powerful ND filter. So you’ll need to identify your composition and set your point of focus before adding the filter. (You may also want to determine the proper exposure prior to adding the filter, then adjust the shutter speed to compensate once you’ve added the filter to your lens).

Make sure you’ve mounted your camera to a tripod (you don’t want to end up with any camera shake!). Then trigger the shutter using a remote release or your camera’s self-timer function.

The neutral density filters I use

There are many neutral density filters to choose from – so how do you know which ones to buy?

Ultimately, you have to decide how much you want to spend (some ND filters are quite expensive!), then look at the options. But I can start by telling you which filters I own and recommend.

You see, I use an ND filter kit, the circular Formatt Hitech 72mm Firecrest Joel Tjintjelaar Signature Edition Long Exposure Kit. It contains three neutral density filters, with strengths of 3, 6, and 10 stops.

You can also stack two filters together to block 9, 13 or 16 stops of light.

Note: If you plan to use your filters on multiple lenses, buy the filter size you need for the largest lens, and get step-down rings to adapt the filters to fit the smaller lenses – or get a square drop-in filter kit instead.

How to use neutral density filters: final words

I love neutral density filters because they help me take photos like this:

And hopefully, now that you’ve read this article, you love them, too! So buy an ND filter or two. Start practicing. And take some amazing shots!

Now over to you:

How do you plan to use your neutral density filters? Which filters do you plan to buy? Share your thoughts in the comments below!

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The post Neutral Density Filters: Everything You Need to Know appeared first on Digital Photography School. It was authored by Andrew S. Gibson.

10 Essential Things to Think About for Portrait Photography

Sat, 09/04/2021 - 06:00

The post 10 Essential Things to Think About for Portrait Photography appeared first on Digital Photography School. It was authored by Darlene Hildebrandt.

Portrait photography isn’t easy, and in fact, there are many elements that go into a great portrait. You have to think about the technical stuff like exposure and focus, as well as the non-technical stuff like composition and working with a live subject.

If you’re just starting out with portrait shooting, all this can be pretty daunting. That’s why I’ve broken it down, piece by piece, into the 10 crucial elements you need to think about when doing portraits.

Starting with number one:

1. Lighting pattern

The lighting pattern refers to how the light falls on your subject’s face. Note that your lighting pattern will determine the mood of the final portrait and whether or not the subject is flattered. Therefore, it’s a critical piece of the portrait photography puzzle, one you must get right for impactful results.

There are four main types of lighting patterns:

  1. Split lighting
  2. Loop lighting
  3. Rembrandt lighting
  4. Butterfly lighting

And there are two lighting pattern styles:

  1. Short lighting
  2. Broad lighting

For a sense of what lighting can do, check out these examples:

Left: Split lighting | Right: Loop lighting

Left: Broad lighting | Right: Short lighting. Notice how different my subject looks in each image, particularly her nose!

So study different patterns. Test out different options. And note what works best in different situations!

2. Lighting ratio

A ratio is a comparison of one thing to another; here, the ratio compares the dark and light sides of your subject’s face. How much difference is there from the shadow to the highlight side?

Higher lighting ratios lead to greater contrast and increased moodiness. On the other hand, lower ratios lead to less contrast and will give your portraits a lighter, fresher feeling.

Look at the following examples:

The ratio on the leftmost image is very strong, about 16:1 (four stops). The middle image ratio is about 4:1 (two stops), and the rightmost image ratio is almost 1:1 (even).

Note that, as I took these photos, the only difference from one to the next was a reflector (the more even the ratio, the more I included the reflector). And note how the mood and feel of the portrait changes as the contrast is adjusted.

3. Quality of light

Another aspect of lighting you need to think about when shooting? Whether you want your light to be hard or soft.

Hard light is produced by a small source and is characterized by high contrast, enhanced subject texture, added drama, and harsh, well-defined shadow edges. Examples of hard light sources are:

  • The sun (yes, it’s large, but it’s far enough way to be relatively small)
  • A bare light bulb
  • The small built-in flash on your camera
  • An unmodified speedlight

Here are two portraits with hard light. Which use of hard light is more appropriate for the subject?

Soft light is produced by a very large light source. It is low contrast (i.e., flat), less texture-enhancing, and is more forgiving and flattering for people photography. Examples of soft light sources are:

  • The sky on an overcast day
  • Large studio softboxes
  • A large reflector
  • An on-camera flash that has been bounced off a ceiling or wall

Here are two portraits done using soft light. Which use of soft light is more appropriate for the subject?

Along with the lighting ratio, the quality of light will have a major affect on the mood and feeling of your portrait. Choose soft light for flattering, beautiful portraits, and choose hard light for an edgier look with more grit and drama.

4. Lens selection

Your lens will change the appearance of both the subject and the background.

A wide-angle lens will introduce distortion and cause the subject’s face to look abnormal and stretched. It will also give you a large, sweeping view of the background.

Take a look at the example above. Notice how the shape of my subject’s face and her features are distorted by a 17mm lens? This is not an effect most folks will appreciate!

However, there may be instances when you want this look: a humorous portrait, kids having fun, or an editorial-style portrait of a street vendor at a market where you want to see both the subject and the environment.

The wide-angle view (17mm) adds to the comical nature of this portrait.

Telephoto lenses, on the other hand, compress perspective, which does two things:

First, it is usually more flattering to the subject because their facial features look less distorted.

Second, it simplifies the background – both by showing less and by defocusing background elements. This, in turn, puts more emphasis on the subject, which is what you want.

The image below was shot at 70mm. Compare it to the portrait at the start of this section, which portrays the same subject in the same setting but at 17mm. Do you see how the face is less distorted and the background is both out of focus and more compressed?

Here’s another portrait, this one shot at 105mm:

The long lens has compressed the background, and because it is so far away (on the other side of a river), the grass is really out of focus and provides a soft background that makes the subject stand out.

5. Background

One thing many photographers fail to think about is the background. It’s so easy to be focused on all the other stuff that you forget to even look at the background, which then ruins an otherwise great image.

Two questions you should ask yourself:

  1. Does the background make sense with the portrait?
  2. Does the background distract the viewer from the subject?

There are four background elements that can distract the viewer:

  1. Contrast
  2. Bright colors (warm tones are the worst, like red and yellow)
  3. Sharpness
  4. Bright areas

Watch for these in your viewfinder and adjust your camera position and composition accordingly. After all, the eye is attracted to the brightest and sharpest area of an image – so if you can keep the background dark, blurry, and low contrast, your subject will take center stage.

See how the bright, high-contrast areas in the background draw your attention away from the wedding couple?

In other words: Get your portrait subject away from the background (far enough to get trees and grass out of focus), and watch for hot spots that grab the eye. Sometimes, simply moving your camera a foot or two to the left or right can eliminate trouble areas and give you a cleaner background that lets the subject shine:

The background is now solid, out of focus, and does not take your eye away from the couple. Instead, it complements the portrait!

6. Exposure and metering

For a portrait of a still subject, I almost always use the following camera settings:

  • Manual mode
  • Single-shot drive mode (that is, I press the button to take a single image)
  • Single Point AF
  • One-Shot AF (i.e., AF-S focus mode) to focus and lock
  • Shade white balance (I am usually working in the shade, but if you’re in the bright sun, you might choose Direct Sunlight instead. Just pick one that matches your lighting condition and leave it.)
  • RAW format

Why do I like these settings? They give me the most control over one important thing: capturing a consistent exposure from one frame to the next. If you ever decide to do portraits for a friend or have paying clients, you want to be able to show images on the back of your camera without worrying about that random shot in the middle that was black because you forgot to adjust the exposure.

(These settings also make editing much faster.)

So set your exposure, do a test shot (review it using the histogram), then don’t make adjustments unless you move to a new location or the light changes.

7. Focusing

I already mentioned my focusing settings above, but I’d like to recommend one more option:

Back-button focus, which lets you engage your camera’s focusing mechanism by pressing a button on the back of your camera, rather than the shutter button.

That way, you can lock focus on the subject – on their eye, if you’re close enough – then recompose the portrait and shoot away. Unless you or the subject move, there is no need to refocus.

Of course, if you’re shooting a moving target, like kids in action, you’ll want to choose different focus settings. Try continuous focusing (AI Servo/AF-C) plus your camera’s fastest burst mode.

8. Posing the subject

Getting your subject or model into a comfortable yet flattering pose can be tricky. People are generally nervous when being photographed and will look to you for guidance on how to stand, hold their body, turn their head, and adjust their hands. So you need to have a few posing ideas at the ready.

Here are some tips:

  • If it bends, bend it. In other words: Get your subject out of a stiff body position by bending one leg slightly, bend the elbows, and bend the wrists.
  • Ask your subject to shift their weight away from the camera for a more flattering pose.
  • Ask your subject to turn their body when standing. You can tell them to turn and point their feet (the body will follow naturally).
  • Turn your subject’s shoulders slightly to narrow the body width; this is flattering for most people.
  • Let your subject pose naturally at first, then make slight tweaks or adjustments. Watch how they move on their own so the final pose looks like them.

Check out the images above. The left shot is stiff and boring – but the right shot has bent limbs, shifted shoulders, weight toward the back, and more.

9. Facial view and camera angle

How you position the subject’s face is another factor that determines the portrait’s beauty and mood. Some people look really great in full face view (facing the camera directly), but most benefit from turning slightly to one side, thus narrowing the face a little.

People cannot see their profile view in the mirror, so most subjects have no idea what they look like from the side. Only by trying it out can you determine whether it’s flattering for them.

The key to choosing the right face angle is to observe your subject. Do they tend to turn slightly when talking to you? Take note; that is probably the side they subconsciously prefer.

The images above show three different views of the same woman’s face. She has a really gorgeous profile and a square jaw. I think the profile and last image (¾ face view) are the most flattering, but she looks great in any image.

You must help your subject look their best by doing comparisons and making choices, and if you’re in doubt, just shoot various poses and choose later (or let them pick).

As for the camera angle: This will determine what you emphasize on the subject. A low camera angle can show height and make someone look taller, but it also emphasizes the body more, which is not a good choice if someone wants to appear slimmer.

On the other hand, a slightly-above-eye-level angle will emphasize the face and minimize the body, a good choice for most people. It also makes kids look smaller and can be effective if that’s the look you’re after. A really high angle will make the forehead more prominent (perhaps not the best choice for subjects with a receding hairline).

Just know that where you place your camera will affect the final look of the portrait.

10. Expression

Okay, this is the thing you need to get right for great portraits. You can nail all nine points above, but if the subject has a bad expression, they will not like the image.

Here’s my big tip for getting the best expressions:

Talk to the subject and interact with them. That’s how I got this shot:

This little girl is holding a photo of her auntie’s ultrasound; I just asked her to show me her baby cousin, and she did this.

I’ve photographed Bob (below) many times. He is a volunteer at an old coal mine where I do a workshop twice a year. He was a miner way back in the day and is as spry in his 70s as many people in their 40s! He loves telling stories about the mine and ghosts, so I just get him talking and let him go. We have fun, he loves being my model for a day, and it shows in the images.

Pro tip: Instead of putting your camera to your eye, try talking to your subject with your camera on a tripod, then shoot with a remote trigger. That way, you can have eye contact, which will significantly enhance your subject’s expression!

Portrait photography essentials: putting it all together

Whew! See, I told you doing portraits comes with a lot to think about. But you can do it. You got this. Just take it one step at a time. If you aren’t at the stage of getting all 10 of these things right, just pick one and work on it. Choose patient models that will help you practice. The only way to get better is by doing!

Now over to you:

Which of these portrait photography essentials do you struggle with the most? Do you have any tips for improving portraits? Share your thoughts in the comments below!

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The post 10 Essential Things to Think About for Portrait Photography appeared first on Digital Photography School. It was authored by Darlene Hildebrandt.

dPS Weekly Photography Challenge Rain

Fri, 09/03/2021 - 16:00

The post dPS Weekly Photography Challenge Rain appeared first on Digital Photography School. It was authored by Sime.

Rain! There’s a lot of it around right now (Depending on where you are obviously) so let’s see your take on this week’s photography challenge theme ‘Rain’ I chose to photograph the raindrops that had run down my window all afternoon, with a macro lens.

#dPSRAIN is the hashtag for this week’s challenge if you’re posting on social media (make sure you follow us!)

Raindrops not so crystal clear | Friday’s rain in Melbourne, Australia

If you live somewhere that it’s not raining, and there’s no rain forecast, you can bend the rules and do ‘water’ in general. (Hey, a garden hose and some creativity and you’re making your own rain!) when photographing rain (or water) remember that it looks good with light shining through it, or maybe as a reflective pool, perhaps even glistening on some skin, the options aren’t endless, but with a little creativity, there are a lot of them!

Kids being kids in the rain | Kew Traffic School

You can opt to capture a detail (top and below) or a whole scene (above) for this theme, really whatever takes your fancy.

Make sure you tag us on social if that’s where you choose to post your entry for the weekly challenge.

As ever, some help with sharing your photo into the comments section below (don’t click on this photo to upload your photo, scroll down to the Disqus section, log in, THEN click on the little camera icon in the comments)

Simply upload your shot into the comments field (look for the little camera icon in the Disqus comments section) and they’ll get embedded for us all to see. Or, if you’d prefer, upload them to your favorite photo-sharing site and leave the link to them.

Dance in the rain.

The post dPS Weekly Photography Challenge Rain appeared first on Digital Photography School. It was authored by Sime.

Fujifilm Announces the Affordable X-T30 II and the Medium Format GFX 50S II

Fri, 09/03/2021 - 06:00

The post Fujifilm Announces the Affordable X-T30 II and the Medium Format GFX 50S II appeared first on Digital Photography School. It was authored by Jaymes Dempsey.

Fujifilm has launched two powerful new mirrorless cameras: the X-T30 II, an incremental upgrade to the popular X-T30, and the GFX 50S II, successor to the GFX 50S.

What do these two cameras offer? Let’s look at each option in turn, starting with:

The new Fujifilm X-T30 II

Fujifilm’s original X-T30 is known for its compact size and retro design, plus its capable stills and video performance for all-around and hybrid shooters. As suggested by its name – the X-T30 II rather than the X-T40 – the new model brings several improvements to its predecessor without a major revamp.

Like the X-T30, the X-T30 II features a powerful 26 MP APS-C sensor, promising excellent image quality in a compact package. Fans of the film aesthetic will appreciate the X-T30 II’s new film simulations, Eterna Bleach Bypass and Classic Neg, which add to the X-T30 II’s retro functionality and give photographers improved in-camera flexibility. 

Speaking of improved flexibility, while the X-T30 focuses in low-light environments of -3 EV, the X-T30 II pushes this to -7 EV – perfect for photographers who frequently shoot at night or in lightless indoor scenarios. And while core autofocus capabilities on the two cameras are identical, Fujifilm guarantees upgraded subject tracking on the X-T30 II, useful for street photography, event photography, and more.

Photographers who frequently compose and/or review images via the LCD screen will appreciate a new display – at 1.62M-dots versus the X-T30’s 1.04M-dots – though the electronic viewfinder remains the same 2.36M-dot resolution. Personally, I find the lack of an EVF upgrade disappointing, but the X-T30/X-T30 II viewfinder display is certainly usable even if it comes up short compared to the competition.

Videography capabilities on the X-T30 II mirror that of its predecessor, with one significant exception: You now get an ultra-slow-motion mode, featuring HD quality at a whopping 240 frames per second for what Fujifilm is billing as “cinematic style results.”

Overall, the X-T30 II upgrades are minor, and if you already own the X-T30, grabbing the X-T30 II makes little sense unless you’re entranced by the -7 EV AF capabilities. That said, for consumers choosing between the X-T30 and the X-T30 II, the higher resolution LCD, improved autofocus, and the slow-motion video mode are worthwhile additions to the newer model, plus the X-T30 II is impressively affordable, even compared to the X-T30 – at just $999 USD (including a 15-45mm kit lens), it’s only $100 USD more than the X-T30. So if you like the sound of the upgrades and can afford to spend a little extra, the X-T30 II is a great choice.

The new Fujifilm GFX 50S II

Fujifilm is the master of relatively compact, relatively affordable medium format cameras for enthusiasts and professionals, and the GFX 50S II further develops this already formidable lineup, promising outstanding 51 MP image quality, a DSLR-like design, plus a handful of improvements for enterprising photographers.

The GFX 50S II offers 6.5 stops of in-body image stabilization for easy handholding (the original GFX 50S lacked IBIS entirely), plus you can expect upgraded autofocus thanks in part to Fujifilm’s “advanced focus algorithms…found in the GFX 100S and the latest X-Series models.” 

And while the GFX 50S II certainly doesn’t come cheap, its $3999 USD price tag is eminently reasonable given the image quality, so if you’ve been eyeing medium format but haven’t managed to take the leap, perhaps now is the time.

Fujifilm’s new camera announcements: final words

The X-T30 II and the GFX 50S II may not be groundbreaking new cameras, but minor upgrades matter, as do low prices.

So if you’re after a do-anything camera with a gorgeous retro design, consider the X-T30 II, which is available for preorder and will begin shipping on October 21st.

And if medium format is your thing, take a look at the GFX 50S II, which will also ship on the 21st of October and is currently available for purchase.

Now over to you:

What do you think of these two new cameras from Fujifilm? Do either of them interest you? Do you wish for more significant upgrades? Share your thoughts in the comments below!

The post Fujifilm Announces the Affordable X-T30 II and the Medium Format GFX 50S II appeared first on Digital Photography School. It was authored by Jaymes Dempsey.

11 Food Photography Composition Tips (for Mouthwatering Results)

Thu, 09/02/2021 - 06:00

The post 11 Food Photography Composition Tips (for Mouthwatering Results) appeared first on Digital Photography School. It was authored by Jeremy Flint.

Looking to improve your food photography compositions? You’ve come to the right place.

In this article, I’m going to share my favorite composition tips – for arranging and styling food, yes, but also for adding creative touches that’ll give you an ultra-professional look.

So whether you’re a complete beginner just starting out in food photography, or you’re a more experienced photographer looking for some composition-enhancing tips, this guide will help you on your way.

Starting with tip #1:

1. Change your angle for an unusual perspective

Beginning food photographers often shoot food straight on, as if they’re sitting or standing at the table with their camera.

And while such an approach can work, it can also fall a little flat. Instead, consider a different perspective, one that will enhance the most interesting parts of the food or highlight key elements.

For instance, a straight-down approach – where you shoot from overhead, with the sensor parallel to the plate – is a great way to showcase all of the food, plus it can add some artistic flair.

Alternatively, shooting from low down or the side gives the viewer a new angle to consider and will highlight the food’s details.

2. Consider orientation (portrait vs landscape)

As you’re undoubtedly aware, you can photograph food in either portrait or landscape orientation – but don’t just stick your camera in one position and call it a day.

Instead, think carefully about which orientation best highlights the food and best frames your composition.

Personally, I think landscape-oriented images tend to look great for showing off beautiful compositions. But try rotating your camera and see if a vertical shot might work well, too. You may find that a vertical composition actually enhances the photo by eliminating distracting elements around the central theme.

3. Use the rule of thirds for well-organized food compositions

It’s a photography classic, but for a good reason. So if you’re struggling to come up with beautiful compositions, why not try the rule of thirds?

You see, the rule of thirds works by dividing your image into thirds (via gridlines). It suggests you align your main subject and other compositional elements with these gridlines; that way, the entire image feels both balanced and dynamic.

For example, I placed the bowls along gridlines here for a pleasing composition:

4. Break the rule of thirds

It is important to note that the rule of thirds is only a food photography guideline, not a true rule – so you certainly don’t need to stick to its terms.

After all, rules are there to be broken! Don’t be afraid to move food items around and test out different compositions. Try putting your main subject in different locations, away from the rule of thirds gridlines and intersections, and see what you get. Who knows; maybe you’ll hit upon a composition you really love!


Pro tip: Positioning the main subject dead-center or slightly off-center generally works well. It’ll lead the viewer’s eye around the image and then toward the main subject:

5. Consider adding elements to the composition


The objects you include alongside your main subject are essential to creating beautiful compositions.

Of course, it’s important to have a main food element – but you should also add extra items to elevate the scene beyond the ordinary.

Some examples of items to include could be additional food pieces, garnishes to brighten the main subject, cutlery such as a knife and fork, and even cooking utensils.

If you are shooting dishes around the main subject, you will need to go wide enough to capture everything in the frame. 6. Add props

In the previous tip, I recommended including little extra elements, such as cutlery or garnishes.

But if you want to really double down and create unique images, you might also try including props. I’m not talking about bits of food, but rather objects, such as bowls, plants, jars, rustic boxes, and the like.

Aim to arrange the items so you showcase – rather than obscure! – your main dish.

7. Re-arrange the elements (beyond the normal)

Often, the natural way to arrange food elements is as a chef or waiter would:

Food on the plate, knife to one side, a glass in the back, etc.

But to create a more striking composition, I suggest you mix it up. Move some of the items to a different place in the frame. For instance, you might move the knife out in front of the food, as I did here:


Really, the important thing is to experiment; test out different compositions, use your creativity, and then capture the shot you like best!

8. Use patterns

As a food photographer, patterns are your friend.


And while you don’t always need patterns in your photos, you can use them to creatively highlight your food. For instance, you might lay out a batch of baked goods in an eye-catching arrangement, or you might circle your main subject with a selection of different-colored fruits.

The key is to create a sequence or structure that creatively emphasizes the main dish. That way, the viewer knows where to look – and is also impressed by your artistry.

9. Use negative space


Here’s another tried and tested food photography composition technique:

Use negative space in your image.

Negative space refers to the part of your frame that is free from any elements or props, like a bare table, a stretch of cloth, etc.

And while additional elements and props can look nice, negative space is a great way to encourage the viewer to focus on the main dish without the added distraction that props bring. Plus, more negative space makes for more simplified compositions, which is generally a good thing.

10. Shoot specific parts of the food


Not all of your food has to be in each image.

So instead of zooming out to shoot the entire dish, get close and capture parts of the food. Emphasize mouthwatering details that’ll look great to the viewer, but make sure to carefully structure your compositions; the goal is to make the main subject stand out against the rest of the shot.

11. Use natural and artificial light

Did you know that light can significantly affect your food photography compositions? It’s true. Light can add volume, create shadows, and emphasize (or de-emphasize) different elements.

So before getting started, you will need to think about the light that is present in your food photography location. Observe how the light falls and ask yourself: does it look natural? Is the light too bright or too dark?

Strong direct light, for instance, can ruin your compositions by making the food too bright. So when faced with direct light, try moving your food to avoid this harsh light, or place your entire composition in the shade to create a more balanced image.

In situations where there is not enough natural light, you will need to brighten up your compositions another way. One solution is artificial lighting; consider using a flash, or even a lamp or fixed room lights, to add more brightness and lighten the subject.

Moving food and drink into the shade can eliminate the harsh shadows produced by direct sunlight. Food photography composition: conclusion


Food photography composition can make or break your images of food, so you should pay careful attention to these tips.

That said, remember to be creative; if you don’t like one of these tips, ignore it! Food composition and styling is a personal choice and is entirely subjective. There is no right or wrong way of photographing things – so be sure to balance these tips with your own vision. That way, you can create images that look great, and that you love.

Now over to you:

Which of these composition tips is your favorite? Do you have any tips of your own to add? Share them in the comments below!

The post 11 Food Photography Composition Tips (for Mouthwatering Results) appeared first on Digital Photography School. It was authored by Jeremy Flint.

13 Best Cinematic Lightroom Presets (in 2021)

Wed, 09/01/2021 - 06:00

The post 13 Best Cinematic Lightroom Presets (in 2021) appeared first on Digital Photography School. It was authored by Ana Mireles.

Are you looking for the best cinematic Lightroom presets on the market today? In this article, you’ll find a roundup of my favorite presets, all offering gorgeous cinematic edits.

Some of these picks are very specific, emulating the cinematic style of a well-known director; others are more generic and are designed for a wide range of photographic needs.

I’ve also included a handful of free options, and even the paid presets sometimes come with freebies – so no matter your budget, there’s a preset pack here for you.

Let’s get started.

1. Cinematic Lightroom Presets (by Northlandscapes)

This 15-preset pack will help you create cinematic and moody landscapes using different color schemes, from neon carrot to steel grey. Jan Erik Waider used Blade Runner 2049 as a major point of inspiration to develop this bundle, which is why these presets work great for a dystopian look.

Unfortunately, the Cinematic Lightroom Presets pack won’t work with older versions of the program. You’ll need Lightroom Classic v.10, LR v.4, or ACR for Photoshop v.13 or higher. For smartphone editors, note that you can download and install the presets on your computer, then sync them with Lightroom Mobile on your phone.

2. Cyberpunk 2.0

Want to give your images an urban and futuristic atmosphere? Cyberpunk 2.0 is the way to go. With these presets’ saturated blues and magentas, you can turn any city night scene into a sci-fi movie.

You do have the option to purchase the Artistic Collection, which includes Cyberpunk 2.0 plus several other preset bundles; that way, you’ll get a better price than buying each pack individually.

Of course, while Cyberpunk 2.0 may have been developed for city scenes with neon lights, you can achieve some very interesting results by experimenting with non-urban shots. The presets are compatible with Lightroom 3.0 or higher and can be used on RAW files as well as PSDs, TIFFs, and JPEGs.

3. Cinematic Lightroom Presets (by Artorius)

From Historic/Action Drama and Fantasy/Dreamy to War Movie and 60’s Western, this Cinematic Lightroom Presets bundle comes with 10 premium presets to fit many styles.

The presets are compatible with Lightroom 4.1 or higher. Note that you can apply the presets to RAW or JPEG images, which is perfect for beginners aiming to create a variety of styles with a single click.

4. Stranger Things Cinematic Preset

Yes, it’s just a single preset, but if you’re a fan of the TV series Stranger Things, you’re going to love this one, plus – bonus! – it’s free. For those of you who are not familiar with the series, don’t worry; suffice it to say that the Stranger Things Cinematic Preset will give you a very cool 80s look for your photos.

Also, if you’re more of a hands-on type of person, you can watch the tutorial and learn how to achieve this look step by step. Otherwise, you can grab this preset for free, though you will need to opt-in to a mailing list with your name and email. You’ll receive the preset as a freebie (and you can unsubscribe from the newsletter at any time).

5. BZ Cinematic Presets

Visual artist Brian Zuckerman has made films and videos for music bands and weddings – and drawing on these experiences, he created a collection of Lightroom presets that’s sold in two volumes.

Volume I includes 10 presets, ranging from Surreal, Nightmare, and Dream to Harmonize and Golden Seconds.

Volume II includes 11 presets, featuring Hollow, Romance Novel, and more.

All in all, you’ll get plenty of moods to play with, and you should have no problem finding the style that fits your photos.

6. Looks Like Film Presets

These two Looks Like Film freebies were developed with Meridian, a brand that sells quality Lightroom presets for every need. As you can see from the examples above, the presets are warm, earthy, and pretty darn stunning, perfect for any cinematic editor’s kit.

As with most freebies out there, you will need to subscribe to a newsletter for access. However, you can unsubscribe at any time, and the newsletter is mostly designed to direct you to their shop so you can familiarize yourself with products designed by talented artists.

7. Movie Effect

Here’s another free Lightroom preset, this one inspired by the big screen. Note: If you like Movie Effect and you’re interested in more of these presets, you can always purchase the complete Movie Effect Lightroom Presets pack designed by Creativetacos.

The Movie Effect bundle includes 11 LR template files, 1 Camera Raw Photoshop Action, 11 DNG files, and 11 Camera Raw XMP files. This means that you can use them as Lightroom presets or Photoshop actions depending on your preferred workflow.

Each preset is editable, so you can always use these as a starting point, but then adjust the look for a more personalized result.

8. Hong Kong Retro Movie Style Presets

Inspired by the works of Wong Kar-wai and Hong Kong’s 80s movies, the Hong Kong Retro Movie Style preset pack will give your images a warm retro look.

The pack includes 8 files compatible with Lightroom CC and Lightroom Classic, 8 DNG files to use in Lightroom Mobile, and 8 files for Photoshop and Camera Raw. It doesn’t matter which program you choose or how you like to edit; these presets will work anywhere, any time!

9. Cinematic Vibes

JJFarquitectos designed the Cinematic Vibes Presets, drawing inspiration from a range of styles; as such, these presets should work on landscapes, urban travel, lifestyle images, and more.

The pack has 72 presets for Lightroom and Photoshop, and while the bundle is paid, you can grab the Cinematic Vibes 01 Preset for free. If you like it, find it’s compatible with your software, etc., then you can purchase the whole bundle.

10. Free Cinematic Lightroom Presets

Usually, free Lightroom presets are single products that invite you to buy a bigger bundle. But in this case, the freebie includes 10 cinematic presets, perfect for any photographer after a cinematic look on a budget.

The Free Cinematic Lightroom Presets are compatible with all Lightroom versions and can be used with Lightroom Mobile, too. Each preset is a one-click solution, though you can always use them as a starting point to further personalize the final look.

11. Wes-Anderson-Inspired Lightroom Presets

Wes Anderson is famous for his use of color, and this Lightroom preset bundle takes inspiration from his movies to give your photos a quirky retro look with an amazing color palette.

Presets inspired by The Royal Tenenbaums pump up the yellows and oranges, while The Grand Budapest Hotel presets are more pastel. In total, you’ll get 30 presets that you can customize to fit your images.

As the developer says, “Don’t forget your flat, symmetrical composition for full-on Wes style!”

12. Super 8 Lightroom Mobile Presets

Instead of emulating a big cinematic production, why not go for a home movie look? That’s what the Super 8 Lightroom Preset pack is all about, which mimics the classic Super 8 movie film format.

(Of course, the Super 8 format has been used for professional filming, too, but it’s traditionally known for the revolution it created in amateur films.)

Note: The five presets are designed for Lightroom Mobile. And the creator does often organizes special sales, so you can buy three bundles and pay for two (generally speaking, the more you buy, the more you save!). Just something to consider if you like their work.

13. Mobile Lightroom Premium Presets

As you may know, Lightroom Mobile has a limited free version, and it also has a full version that you can access with a Lightroom subscription.

But did you also know that the full Lightroom Mobile, aside from giving you access to the entire suite of Lightroom tools, also includes a library of premium presets? These include Adobe’s Cinematic collection with 10 different looks.

You can purchase a Lightroom subscription starting at $9.99 USD per month, and there’s a 7-day free trial plus a 14-day cancellation period if you’re not satisfied.

How to choose the perfect cinematic preset pack

As you can see, the term “cinematic” covers a huge variety of styles, so to really find what you’re looking for, you need to be more specific.

Here’s my recommendation: Start by defining what type of film you have in mind. This can be a specific genre like horror or indie. Another approach could be to choose a country or a time frame – for example, the Hollywood movies from the 80s or French cinema from the 30s.

Finally, if you have something particular in mind, don’t hesitate to look for it by the director’s name or even the name of the movie. As you can see from the suggestions above, some developers work on presets for a very specific niche.

An important thing to keep in mind is that presets modify the existing information from your original photo. So the effect will look different on each image, and it won’t necessarily end up like the developer’s examples. When possible, choose a preset that starts out with images that are similar to yours in light and color.

The best cinematic Lightroom presets: final words

I hope you enjoyed my selection of the best cinematic Lightroom presets. I tried to cover a wide range of styles so that all of you could find at least one or two options that fit your needs.

So grab a preset collection and start creating some stunning cinematic edits!

Now over to you:

Do you have any favorite cinematic presets that didn’t make the list? Share them in the comments below!

The post 13 Best Cinematic Lightroom Presets (in 2021) appeared first on Digital Photography School. It was authored by Ana Mireles.

Program Mode: Everything You Need to Know (Ultimate Guide)

Tue, 08/31/2021 - 06:00

The post Program Mode: Everything You Need to Know (Ultimate Guide) appeared first on Digital Photography School. It was authored by Simon Ringsmuth.

What is Program mode on your camera, and when should you use it?

Program mode is one of those “odd one out” camera settings – one that most folks never try because they simply don’t understand how it can help their photography.

Yet once you get the hang of it, Program mode is actually pretty darn useful. That’s why, in this article, I aim to share everything you need to know about this mode, including:

  • What it actually is
  • How it works
  • How to use it for great results

So if you’re ready to become a Program mode master, then let’s get started.

What is Program mode?

The camera mode dial operates on something of a continuum. On one end, you have Manual mode, which gives you complete control over the three elements of exposure: shutter speed, aperture, and ISO. On the other end, you have Auto mode, which gives you almost no control over exposure.

As you can see in the diagram above, other modes exist in the middle of the spectrum. These modes – Shutter Priority, Aperture Priority, and Program mode – give you some degree of control, but your camera does significant work, as well. For instance, Aperture Priority lets you control the aperture and ISO while the camera determines the proper shutter speed for a good exposure.

So what about Program mode? What does it do?

Program mode exists somewhere between Aperture/Shutter Priority and Auto mode, and it works like this:

You set the ISO, while your camera sets the aperture and shutter speed.

(Remember: The ISO refers to the sensitivity of your camera sensor, the aperture refers to the lens diaphragm size, and the shutter speed refers to the length of time the shutter captures light.)

Program mode also gives you control over other camera features, such as exposure compensation, but I’ll discuss that in a later section. For now, just remember that Program mode gives you ISO control, but leaves the aperture and shutter speed up to your camera.

(In fact, Program mode is sometimes referred to as “ISO Priority.”)

When is Program mode useful?

While Program mode isn’t nearly as popular as Aperture Priority or Shutter Priority, it can make a big difference to your photography – you just have to know when to use it.

In essence, Program mode works best when you care about the ISO, but you don’t care about the shutter speed and the aperture. This is either because you know that your camera will automatically give sufficient shutter speed and aperture values or because these settings won’t affect the final result in a meaningful way.

So if you’re shooting outdoors and you want to produce minimal noise in your photos, you might select Program mode, dial in a low ISO, and then let your camera do the rest.

I shot this using Program mode, which let me tweak my exposure settings on the fly.

Or if you’re photographing under powerful artificial lights, you might tell your camera to keep the ISO low, then trust it to nail the remaining exposure variables.

Bottom line:

If all you want to do is adjust the ISO, you’re set. Put your camera in Program mode, change the ISO, and focus on composing and framing your shots rather than thinking about the aperture, shutter speed, and overall exposure.

But that’s not Program mode’s only use. You see, Program mode is also a great transition mode. If you’re aiming to improve your photography skills but you’re still stuck on Auto mode, you might try leveling up to Program mode; you can then use it as a stepping stone to Aperture Priority, Shutter Priority, and beyond.

Program mode: beyond the basics

At this point, you should be comfortable with the Program mode basics: You set the ISO, and your camera does the rest.

But if you dig a little deeper, you’ll find more useful features to unlock. Many of these can help you get the shot you want, instead of the shot your camera thinks you want. In this way, Program mode is like the late-night infomercial version of Auto; it handles all the nitty-gritty complicated stuff for you, but ends with a, “Wait, there’s more!”

First, Program mode allows you to use exposure compensation to correct any exposure mistakes. By adjusting the exposure compensation in one direction, you can force your camera to take brighter images, and by adjusting it in the other direction, you’ll get the reverse.

Say you take a photo of snow and it turns out too dark. With a little exposure compensation, you can bring back the snow’s natural brightness (note that you can’t do that in Auto mode).

And you can adjust plenty of other camera settings while in Program mode, including white balance, metering mode (full/center/spot), point of focus, and whether your camera should use its flash.

(Contrast this with Auto mode, and you should start to see the usefulness of the humble little “P” marker on your camera’s mode dial.)

Of course, Program mode isn’t always the way to go. Sometimes, you’ll want to independently adjust your shutter speed or your aperture, in which case one of the Priority options, or even Manual mode, is the right choice.

But when ISO is all that matters, give Program mode a try.

Shooting in Program mode gave me a good overall exposure, but I didn’t like how the microphone was so dark.

I switched to spot metering, retook the shot, and got what I wanted. Program allows for this flexibility, whereas Auto does not!

Program mode: final words

Program mode is a handy little option, even if it’s often eclipsed by Manual, Aperture Priority, and Shutter Priority.

So the next time you don’t want to give up all control over your camera but also don’t want to do everything yourself, consider Program mode. You might ask yourself, “Do I need to adjust the aperture? And do I need to adjust the shutter speed?”

If the answer is “No,” then Program mode is probably your best option!

Now over to you:

Do you use Program mode? Do you plan to start using it? Why or why not? What do you think of it? Share your thoughts in the comments below!

The post Program Mode: Everything You Need to Know (Ultimate Guide) appeared first on Digital Photography School. It was authored by Simon Ringsmuth.

How to Use the Canon Camera Connect App (in 2021)

Mon, 08/30/2021 - 06:00

The post How to Use the Canon Camera Connect App (in 2021) appeared first on Digital Photography School. It was authored by Suzi Pratt.

In this article, I’m going to share everything you need to know about using the Canon Camera Connect app, including:

  • How to connect your camera to the app
  • The ins and outs of the app interface
  • What the app can do for you as a photographer

So if you’re struggling to get your camera connected to the app, or you simply want to know how you can use the app to revolutionize your photography, then you’ve come to the right place.

Let’s jump right in.

Step 1: Check for compatibility and download the app

Canon Camera Connect is a free app available for download on Android and iOS devices. To get started, head to the Play Store or the App Store and hit Install.

The app is compatible with a broad range of Canon digital cameras, including:

If you’re not sure whether your camera is compatible with the Canon Camera Connect app, you can check the full compatibility specs here, though bear in mind that the compatibility list hasn’t been updated to include Canon’s latest camera models. Alternatively, you can download the app and search for your camera:

Step 2: Connect your camera to the app

The specifics of this step will vary depending on your camera model. Fortunately, the Canon Camera Connect app offers startup instructions that take into account these variations.

In the app, select Easy Connection Guide:

Then hit Connect another camera/camcorder:

Next, search for your camera model:

Depending on your camera’s capabilities, you may have the option to connect via Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, or NFC. Canon recommends Bluetooth for the best connection, but any of the three options should work.

Finally, head through the setup instructions.

By the time you’ve finished, your camera should be paired with the app and ready to go.

Step 3: Explore the interface of the Canon Camera Connect App

After you have successfully connected your phone to your camera, head back to the app home page. The menu is minimal and pretty straightforward.

While the app offers several functions – including the ability to automatically download photos from your camera to your phone – you’ll generally stick to the top two options:

  • Images on camera
  • Remote live view shooting

Let’s take a look at each of these items in turn:

Images on camera

Selecting Images on camera will show you a gallery of all the images on your connected camera (i.e., on the camera’s memory card), sorted by the date they were taken.

To open an image, simply tap it with your finger. You’ll see it displayed large.

At the bottom of the screen, you’ll find several useful options, including Info (which lets you view camera settings for the file), Rating (which lets you give your file a rating between one and five stars), Import (which lets you download the file to your phone), and Delete (in case you want to erase the image from your camera on the spot).

Remote live view shooting

Selecting Remote live view shooting will give you a live camera feed on your phone. Hit the big circle at the bottom of the screen to fire the camera shutter.

You can make adjustments to settings, too; for instance, from your phone, you can change the point of focus, the shutter speed, the aperture, the ISO, the white balance, the AF area mode, and more.

When to use the app for amazing results

Now that you’re familiar with the Canon Camera Connect app basics, let’s discuss some common situations where the app can help your photography, starting with:

1. Photographing landscapes without a dedicated remote trigger

When shooting landscapes, it’s best to avoid using the shutter button to take photos. After all, most landscape photography occurs at slow shutter speeds, where the action of pressing the shutter button can introduce unwanted blur.

So what do you do?

Well, most landscape shooters rely on one of two options: They either carry a remote trigger, or they use the camera self-timer.

Unfortunately, both these methods come with significant drawbacks. It’s easy to forget a remote trigger at home, plus it requires batteries of its own, and it introduces yet another element of uncertainty into a camera setup. And the camera self-timer fails when you’re trying to photograph moving objects, such as a wave coming in on the beach; thanks to the delay, you rarely end up with the result you envision.

Enter the Canon Camera Connect app, which lets you fire your camera remotely, straight from your phone. You don’t need to carry anything extra (except for a smartphone, of course, but these days, who doesn’t?). And you don’t have to worry about self-timer delays.

2. Photographing from odd angles

If you’re the type of photographer who shoots from down low, up high, or any other uncomfortable positions, you’re going to love the Camera Connect app.

Simply turn on the remote live view shooting option, then position your camera without hurting your neck or scraping your elbows.

Preview the composition and exposure through your smartphone feed, then take your photo.

3. Doing street photography from the hip

In street photography, the goal often is to shoot without being noticed by your subject.

This has led street photographers to develop various techniques for shooting inconspicuously, including shooting from the hip, which involves blindly firing your camera without looking through the viewfinder.

Unfortunately, shooting from the hip, while discreet, results in very few keepers – unless you preview images through the Camera Connect app first.

In other words:

Set up your shots the way you normally would, with your camera held below eye level. But hold your phone in one hand and surreptitiously check the remote feed for framing information. That way, you can ensure your compositions look good before firing the shutter button, and your keeper rate will immediately skyrocket.

Make sense?

4. Product photography from a distance

If you like to shoot products (or any still life subjects, really) with studio lighting, you probably spend a lot of time walking to your lights, then back to your camera, then back to the lights, and back to your camera, and so on.

It may not seem like a lot, and if you’re just starting out, it probably isn’t. But over time, moving back and forth between camera and lights can become frustrating, and you’ll wish you had some way to simplify the process – such as the Canon Camera Connect app.

With the app, you can preview images and fire off test shots while standing next to your lights, then simply reach over and make adjustments to your light settings without needing to journey to your camera and back.

How to use the Canon Camera Connect app: final words

Well, there you have it:

How (and why) to use the Canon Camera Connect app. Hopefully, you can now confidently connect your camera to the app – and use it to improve your photography workflow!

The post How to Use the Canon Camera Connect App (in 2021) appeared first on Digital Photography School. It was authored by Suzi Pratt.

The Best Street Photography Settings (And Why)

Sun, 08/29/2021 - 06:00

The post The Best Street Photography Settings (And Why) appeared first on Digital Photography School. It was authored by Olivier Duong.

What are the best street photography settings?

Street photography can be tricky, but as an experienced shooter, I’ve spent a lot of time experimenting with different settings. Over the years, I’ve determined what works – and what doesn’t. That’s why, in this article, I’m going to share my favorite settings for street shooting, including:

  • The best autofocus mode
  • The best aperture
  • The best shutter speed
  • (And more!)

So if you’re ready to start setting up your shots like the masters, then keep reading.

The best street photography settings: one caveat

Before I start discussing my favorite street photography settings and how they’re great for capturing photos on the fly, let’s get something straight:

If you have certain street settings that work for you and get you the shots you’re after, then by all means, keep using them. You’ve found the settings that fit you best, and you should probably stick with them.

After all, there’s no single set of all-around amazing settings. Instead, what I am presenting in this article are the tried-and-true settings that most street photographers prefer today and that past photographers have loved, but that might not resonate with you.

So read this article carefully and consider my suggestions. If they work for you, great! But if they don’t work for you, that’s okay, too, and you should continue to shoot with pride.


The best focus settings for street photography

Did you know that the best way to focus in street photography is faster than autofocus?

I know, I know. You’re probably wondering: what could be faster than the latest autofocus, with its Eye AF and snazzy tracking algorithms?

I’ll tell you:

Prefocusing, also known as zone focusing.

You see, many of the best street photographers simply prefocus their lens a few feet in front of the camera, make sure their subjects are within the prefocused zone of sharpness, then hit the shutter button.

Check out this illustration, which includes several possible prefocus zones:

You see, by manually focusing the lens in advance, the photographer can ensure that either the blue zone or the red zone appears in focus all the time. That way, if a subject walks into the prefocused zone, the photographer can grab a sharp shot without needing to fiddle with autofocus settings.

Because here’s the thing:

Even if you have the fastest autofocus in the world, there’s always going to be a focusing delay. Plus, the autofocus might miss your main subject and hit another subject instead.

(With people coming toward you, the AF will likely focus on the closest person, which might not be the person you want to focus on. So you’ll need to focus and recompose, which takes time, and once you’re ready to actually nail focus, the moment will likely have passed and you’ll have missed your shot.)

Zone focusing eliminates those problems because a zone is like a force field in front of your camera. Anything that enters the force field will be in focus, which is pretty darn nifty, right?

How to set up zone focusing

To set up your prefocused zone, you’ll need to determine the type of shots you want to take.

So ask yourself: Do I want photos of close-up subjects, or do I want to shoot people from a distance? That will determine where you need to focus.

Let’s say you want to take a few shots with your subject less than one meter away. All you need to do is to put your lens like so:

The aperture is at f/16, so you should put the marking on the left to 0.7, then look at the “16” marking on the right. Do you see how it’s at “1.2”? That tells you that everything between 0.7 to 1.2 meters will be in focus.

The way aperture works, the farther away you are, the larger the depth of field, so putting the point of focus at one meter will keep a lot of space in focus.

And if you want to photograph people over a meter away, you can put the leftmost “16” to “1” and look at the rightmost “16” to determine your most distant area of focus.

“But my lens doesn’t have those marks,” you protest. That’s where a tool like DOFMaster comes in handy:

Simply select your camera from the dropdown menu, then dial in your lens’s focal length. Pick your f-stop (I’ll discuss this more in a later section), set your ideal subject distance (i.e., point of focus), then hit Calculate.

On the right-hand side, you’ll see your focusing zone (it will correspond to the near limit and far limit calculations). If you like the focusing zone, then manually focus at the subject distance and get shooting. If you don’t like the focusing zone, then feel free to adjust your f-stop, your subject distance, and even your focal length until you get a pleasing result.

Note: When you select a focal length and an aperture, the calculator will also give you the hyperfocal distance for those settings, which is the point at which you can focus for maximum depth of field. Set your lens to the hyperfocal distance, and everything from half that distance to infinity will stay in focus – which is perfect if you want to keep as much of the frame as sharp as possible.

In fact, most street photographers I know set their lenses to focus at the hyperfocal distance. It’s only when the light starts dropping that they’ll start to widen the aperture and rein in their point of focus; that way, they can keep their exposures looking bright and keep their subjects sharp.


The best aperture for street photography

I’ve talked lots and lots about zones and points of focus, but you may be wondering:

What aperture should I use for street photography?

Dial in the narrowest aperture you can afford. Use f/8 as a starting point, but if you can go narrower, do it. As I mentioned above, when the light starts to drop, you may need to widen your aperture to keep a nice exposure, and that’s okay – just be mindful of how this will affect your zone of focus.

The best shutter speed and ISO for street photography

Once you’ve chosen your focus and aperture, what about your other settings?

You’ve got a few choices. First of all, you can use Aperture Priority mode, so your camera will automatically choose the shutter speed (though you can still adjust the latter via exposure compensation). Or you can use Manual mode and select the shutter speed (and the ISO) yourself. Either option is fine, so try them both out and see what you think.

In terms of shutter speed specifics, I recommend staying above 1/125s. Stuff usually happens fast on the streets, and below 1/125s there is a risk of camera shake. If your subject is moving quickly (e.g., you’re shooting a biker), you may want to boost the shutter speed to 1/250s or faster to prevent motion blur.

At this point, all that’s left is the ISO. You could consider Auto ISO with some sort of cap – ISO 1600 is a good choice. Or you could start at around ISO 200, then increase it as required. Many street shots actually look good at high ISOs – the grain is nice, especially in black and white – so don’t worry too much about pushing your ISO beyond its standard acceptable value.


The best street photography settings, recapped

Here is my list of the best settings for street photography:

  • Shooting mode: Aperture Priority
  • Aperture: f/8
  • Point of focus: the hyperfocal distance, or within your selected zone
  • Shutter speed: 1/125s or faster
  • ISO: 200, or Auto ISO capped at ISO 1600

One of the strengths of this system is that it accounts for rapid transitions. For instance, imagine you are walking out of a building, heading from a shadowy interior to a sunny street. If you are shooting in Manual mode rather than Aperture Priority, you probably need to increase your shutter speed by three stops – and during this time, you may miss out on an incredible opportunity. However, if you’re using Aperture Priority mode, your camera will make the shutter speed adjustment for you, and you’ll instantly be ready to shoot.

Make sense?

The best street photography settings: final words

There you have it:

The street photography settings that will get you the most keepers, and that have been used consistently by the famous photographers of the past (and present).

So try them out. See how you like them. Of course, it’s still possible to take great street photos with other settings – so if you decide to go a different route, that’s okay, too.

Now over to you:

What do you think of these street settings? Do you have other settings that you prefer? Share your thoughts in the comments below!

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The post The Best Street Photography Settings (And Why) appeared first on Digital Photography School. It was authored by Olivier Duong.

21 Sample Poses to Get You Started Photographing Groups of People

Sat, 08/28/2021 - 06:00

The post 21 Sample Poses to Get You Started Photographing Groups of People appeared first on Digital Photography School. It was authored by Guest Contributor.

Are you looking for some group posing inspiration? Need some group poses for your next family or event photoshoot?

We’ve got you covered.

In this article, I’m going to share my favorite 21 poses for groups, ranging from fun and informal to serious and businesslike.

Let’s dive right in, starting with:

1. Everyone standing together, facing forward

When working with a large group of people, you won’t be able to control each individual’s pose or expression. This works out fine – as long as you pay attention to the overall composition.

So direct everyone to stand together, with no significant gaps. Ask them to face forward and cross their arms over their chests. Most importantly, make sure that all people in the group are visible.

2. The standard full-body shot

When photographing large groups, the only composition that will include everyone into the frame is often a full-body shot.

These shots are usually formal and even documentary, so your primary objective is to ensure everyone in the group is clearly visible. Note the varied poses in the example below; feel free to direct heads and arms, but don’t obsess too much about it.

3. Businesslike from above

If possible, shoot from an elevated angle. You might use a balcony or climb on a car to get a higher viewpoint (and if you’re really daring, you could get on a roof).

The higher vantage point will definitely be worth the effort, because instead of an ordinary and common group shot, you will get a more interesting and inviting perspective. As with the group poses discussed above, make sure all individuals are visible.

4. Staggered team

There are occasions when standing separately is more appropriate than keeping everyone tightly packed. It’s not the best way to take a friendly group photo, but it can certainly work well for a small team shot: a band, a TV show cast, or a small business staff.

If a group has a known leader, put them in front for an even stronger composition, then stagger everyone else behind and to the sides. Some overlap between bodies is okay, but ensure that everyone is given ample space in the frame.

5. The trio

This is pretty much a standard way to photograph a group of friends. Yes, it’s easy, ordinary, and common, but it really works.

Simply ask your subjects (three is ideal, but four or five can work, too) to position themselves around the tallest group member, shoulder to shoulder, arms around each other.

6. Heads leaning in

Here’s another great pose for friends.

Ask everyone to stand very close together. Then make them lean their heads in slightly – both toward one another and toward the camera. If they’re willing, group members might put their arms around one another.

7. Head circle (on the ground)

This is another friendly one, and it works great for outdoor photo shoots. Ask the group to form a circle while lying in the grass, then shoot from above.

Make sure everyone is spaced out evenly – in other words, the circle should feel balanced – and looking toward the camera. You can try photographing from different angles: directly overhead, from the side, from a high vantage point, etc.

8. Over the shoulder

This is a fun and rewarding way to pose a small group of people. Choose a group leader and put them in front, then bring in the others one by one, staggered behind.

Note that each new group member should stand behind the previous person and peek toward the camera over the shoulder. Supporting themselves a little by leaning on the person directly in front adds to the informality of the composition.

9. Peeking out from behind

A variation on the previous shot, this pose has a slightly sillier feel. Put a group leader in front, then ask the others to peek out from behind.

Pro tip: Take shots with different aperture settings, then decide whether you prefer the entire group in focus or only the leader.

10. Jumping in the air

This is a fun way to do an informal picture of a group of friends.

Simply ask everyone to hold hands and jump (ideally while raising their arms above their heads). For the best results, ask the group to make the jump after a short run.

11. Heads in a row

Here’s a very rewarding and interesting composition: a group of people in a row, slowly fading into the background.

Check that everybody is clearly visible, then shoot from a close distance with a wide aperture and be sure to focus on the first person. Yes, people farther away will be blurred, but the result is a very interesting and unusual-looking group shot.

12. Family on a couch

Now let’s look at some family poses.

The most common way to photograph a family is by asking them to sit on a couch in the living room. No, it’s not the most creative way for a family shot, but it can be done well and generally looks good.

The easiest way to improve these standard compositions is to simply crop tight. Don’t include the couch and room furniture in the shot. Instead, fill the frame with all the family members.

13. Family on the lawn

Another good idea for family photos is to simply get outside. A front lawn, a local park, and a beach are all excellent places to take some family shots.

Just remember that when subjects are sitting, you shouldn’t remain standing; instead, get low and shoot from your subjects’ eye level.

14. Family on the ground

For an intimate family pose, ask everyone to lie together on the ground. Make them lift their upper bodies a bit and support themselves on their arms. Shoot from a low angle for the best results.

15. Family pile

Here’s a beautiful composition for a family shot, and one that’s tons of fun for kids and adults alike. Choose one family member to lie down flat against the ground, and ask the others to (gently) pile on top.

You can do this one outdoors on the ground or indoors in a bed; note that it works absolutely fine with any number of kids.

16. Family cuddle

This one’s a classic, though make sure the family is comfortable with it before continuing.

Ask the family to sit on their favorite couch and cuddle up tight. Keep everyone staggered enough that all facial features are visible.

17. Behind the couch

For an unusual and interesting family picture, turn the traditional couch photo setting around. Simply take your shots from the back side of the couch and see what a huge difference it can make.

Ask the group to huddle together, with the “leader” at the bottom and the rest arrayed behind.

18. Behind the couch, separated

Here’s a slight variation on the group pose shared above. Head around the back of the couch and ask the family to peer over – but instead of posing in a pile, have them sit more formally.

19. Piggyback posing

This one’s an absolutely beautiful way to create shots of a group of family members. Just ask the kids to hang onto the adults’ backs, then position the adults close together:

20. Full-body staggered

If you’re looking for a full-body shot, try this option, where you ask the tallest family member to stand in the back, then stagger the shorter individuals forward.

As you can imagine, this works well with any number of people, though the more folks you include, the more variation you’ll need in height.

21. Walking forward

Here’s your final posing idea for groups:

Take shots of the family walking hand in hand. Make sure they’re spaced out relatively evenly (also, as indicated in the example below, younger kids can be carried).

Pro tip: Shoot in continuous mode and select the photos with the best leg movement and positioning. Make sure to control the focus while subjects are approaching from a distance.

Group posing ideas: final words

Well, there you have it:

21 posing ideas to get you started with group photography. Of course, feel free to get creative and come up with different variants on your own. Think of ways you can transform these ideas for your particular shooting scenario and subjects.

Now over to you:

Which of these group poses do you like best? And do you have any group posing ideas of your own? Share them in the comments below!

Kaspars Grinvalds is a photographer working and living in Riga, Latvia. He is the author of Posing App where more poses and tips for people photography are available.

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Behind the couch"},{"id":"behind-the-couch-separated","permalink":"https:\/\/digital-photography-school.com\/posing-guide-21-sample-poses-to-get-you-started-with-photographing-groups-of-people\/","title":"18. Behind the couch, separated"},{"id":"piggyback-posing","permalink":"https:\/\/digital-photography-school.com\/posing-guide-21-sample-poses-to-get-you-started-with-photographing-groups-of-people\/","title":"19. Piggyback posing"},{"id":"full-body-staggered","permalink":"https:\/\/digital-photography-school.com\/posing-guide-21-sample-poses-to-get-you-started-with-photographing-groups-of-people\/","title":"20. Full-body staggered"},{"id":"walking-forward","permalink":"https:\/\/digital-photography-school.com\/posing-guide-21-sample-poses-to-get-you-started-with-photographing-groups-of-people\/","title":"21. Walking forward "},{"id":"group-posing-ideas-final-words","permalink":"https:\/\/digital-photography-school.com\/posing-guide-21-sample-poses-to-get-you-started-with-photographing-groups-of-people\/","title":"Group posing ideas: final words"}] };

The post 21 Sample Poses to Get You Started Photographing Groups of People appeared first on Digital Photography School. It was authored by Guest Contributor.

dPS Weekly Photography Challenge Go Wide!

Fri, 08/27/2021 - 16:00

The post dPS Weekly Photography Challenge Go Wide! appeared first on Digital Photography School. It was authored by Sime.

Your photography challenge this week is to take the widest lens you have (hey, if that’s a 50mm, so be it!) and make a photograph with it! Many things can work well with a wider lens, landscapes, cityscapes.. Really I guess you can photograph anything with a wide lens, some things just look better really wide.

Use the Hashtag #dPSGoWide and #dPSPhotoChallenge if you post to social media

This is 14mm on a Canon EOS 5D Mk3 at LVMS!

Some great examples of ‘Wide Angles’ here to give you inspiration for your photograph!

This is 16mm on a Canon EOS 5D Mk2 in Williamstown

Make sure you tag us on social if that’s where you choose to post your entry for the weekly challenge.

As ever, some help with sharing your photo into the comments section below (don’t click on this photo to upload your photo, scroll down to the Disqus section, log in, THEN click on the little camera icon in the comments)

Simply upload your shot into the comments field (look for the little camera icon in the Disqus comments section) and they’ll get embedded for us all to see. Or, if you’d prefer, upload them to your favorite photo-sharing site and leave the link to them.

The post dPS Weekly Photography Challenge Go Wide! appeared first on Digital Photography School. It was authored by Sime.

The Sony a7 IV Will Launch in October With a 33 MP Sensor

Fri, 08/27/2021 - 06:00

The post The Sony a7 IV Will Launch in October With a 33 MP Sensor appeared first on Digital Photography School. It was authored by Jaymes Dempsey.

The long-awaited Sony a7 IV will likely debut in October, boasting a brand-new sensor, improved in-body image stabilization, and more.

This comes from Sony Alpha Rumors, who recently reported on an a7 IV announcement delay; thanks to a chip shortage, the a7 IV’s original September 2021 announcement date has been pushed to October. Unfortunately, the shortage will affect a7 IV availability, and you can expect “that supplies will be limited during the first months” of a7 IV shipments.

While few a7 IV specs have been released – and none have been unveiled directly by Sony – Sony Alpha Rumors has managed to paint a picture of the upcoming camera. Most notably, the a7 IV will include a new 33 MP sensor, not a redesign of the standard 24 MP sensor found in the a7 III. This will offer users enhanced cropping and printing capabilities over previous a7 models, and will undoubtedly appeal to the “do-everything” camera crowd, who require a camera that can handle action, detail work (e.g., landscapes, product photography), and more.

A 33 MP sensor would also push the a7 IV past the 30 MP Canon EOS R and far beyond the 20 MP EOS R6. Sony Alpha Rumors claims that “Sony’s goal with the a7 IV is to really fight back with Canon,” and that you can expect the new camera “to be more than an ‘updated’ Sony a7 III.”

What else will the a7 IV offer? The new camera will feature slightly improved in-body image stabilization over its predecessor (5.5 stops versus 5 stops). And older rumors hint at an updated electronic viewfinder – 3.69M-dot resolution versus the a7 III’s 2.36M dots. While the a7 III’s EVF was respectable for its time, a resolution boost is certainly in order, though no doubt some Sony fans will wish for a 5.76M-dot viewfinder to match the a7R IV and the Canon EOS R5.

And you can also expect 4K/60p video, “top-notch” autofocus and image quality, plus improved sensor readout speeds.

As for the price: Back in late 2020, Sony Alpha Rumors suggested a $2499 USD tag – $500 USD more than the a7 III at the time of launch, yes, but given Sony’s aims for the a7 line, the price seems plausible.

Regardless, if you’ve been waiting for the a7 IV, it won’t be long now. So keep an eye out for the official announcement!

Now over to you:

What do you think of the rumored a7 IV specifications? Are you pleased? Frustrated? What do you hope to see in an a7 IV? Share your thoughts in the comments below!

The post The Sony a7 IV Will Launch in October With a 33 MP Sensor appeared first on Digital Photography School. It was authored by Jaymes Dempsey.

26 Types of Photography to Explore (for Inspiration)

Thu, 08/26/2021 - 06:00

The post 26 Types of Photography to Explore (for Inspiration) appeared first on Digital Photography School. It was authored by Megan Kennedy.

There are dozens of types of photography, covering a wide range of subjects and themes. Some genres focus on people, others center around the natural environment, others emphasize human-made landscapes, and still others consider cultural objects such as food and products.

Thinking about branching out into a different photographic genre or simply on a hunt for inspiration? Here’s a list of 26 photography types to get your creative juices flowing!

1. Abstract photography Canon 5D Mark II | Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II with extension tubes | f/2.2 | 1/200s | ISO 100

Abstract photography is about expressing a visual image through association, isolation, and recontextualization. Also known as experimental photography, abstract photography isn’t bound by standard photographic conventions (although a sound knowledge of composition and technique can help improve your abstract photos!).

By prioritizing abstraction over the figurative or representational renderings of subject matter, an abstract photographer crafts an image that audiences can explore through intuition and impression. And with a focus on aspects such as light, distance, detail, color, texture, line, camera movement, and focus, abstract photographers experiment with ideas about what actually makes an effective image.

2. Aerial photography

Also known as airborne photography, aerial photography involves making photographs while a camera (either held by a photographer or mounted on special equipment) is airborne. Vehicles for aerial photography can include kites, aircraft, parachutes, rockets, and even pigeons (a technique invented in 1907).

The first aerial photos were made by French photographer Gaspard-Félix Tournachon, who took pictures over Paris in a balloon in 1858. However, the resulting photographs are lost to time, and the earliest surviving aerial photograph, made by James Wallace Black and Samuel Archer King, depicts Boston from a balloon in 1860.

Nowadays, drones are a popular tool for aerial photography. And as drones become more efficient, user-friendly, and economical, many photographers are taking the opportunity to capture unique perspectives from the air.

3. Animal photography

From whales to cats to gerbils, animal photography encompasses both domesticated pets and wildlife. Animal photographers strive to convey the spirit of their subject, and preventing harm to animals is paramount.

Because of the varied behavior and size of animals, animal photography can involve a wide range of gear. Lenses include telephotos, wide-angles, zooms, and primes. Equipment such as hides and camera traps, as well as camouflage and Ghillie suits, are sometimes used to photograph wildlife.

For pet photography, standard zoom lenses are a common choice, although prime lenses or a wide zoom such as a 16-35mm are good alternatives.

4. Architectural photography

Architectural photography is the photography of buildings and similar structures. Architectural photographers prioritize a balance between realism, technical accuracy, and pleasing aesthetics. The first permanent photograph (titled View from the Window at Le Gras by Nicéphore Niépce) doubled as the first architectural photograph. From there, early photographers like Henry Fox Talbot made numerous images with architectural subjects.

Attention to compositional tenets like leading lines, perspective, symmetry, and framing are key methods applied in crafting an architectural photograph. Sometimes, aerial photography is combined with architectural photography to present the viewer with a fresh perspective on an architectural subject.

5. Astrophotography

Humans have been looking at the night sky for millennia, and the jump between the first successful photograph of an astronomical object (the Moon in 1840 by John William Draper) to present-day astrophotography is amazing.

Canon 5D Mark IV | Canon EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS II USM | f/5.6 | 1/1600s | ISO 500

Depending on the subject and your desired outcome, there are tools designed to make the process of photographing the heavens easier. For broad night sky photography, a wide-angle lens with a wide aperture and a quality mirrorless or DSLR camera with an interchangeable lens configuration and manual capabilities is ideal (and a full-frame camera will likely perform better in low-light conditions). A remote shutter release or intervalometer will minimize camera shake.

If you plan to photograph fixed renderings of the night sky (as opposed to star trails), a tracker mechanism is highly recommended. A sturdy tripod is a crucial piece of equipment, and a flashlight for light-painting the surrounding environment to create context can be a useful creative tool.

Light pollution indicator apps like LPM (above) are available for Android and iOS devices.

Apps that track weather and light pollution or indicate the darkest times of the month can be handy for determining a shoot date in advance.

In terms of photographing the moon, a telephoto lens mounted to a full-frame camera can work well. Again, a mirrorless or DSLR with an interchangeable lens system and manual capabilities is recommended, along with a remote or shutter release cable and a sturdy tripod. Here’s a useful guide for choosing the right settings to capture beautiful lunar astrophotography.

6. Conceptual photography

While the phrase conceptual photography” derives from the late 1960s Conceptual Art movement, the term has been used retrospectively to describe a genre or approach to photography that prioritizes the illustration of a concept.

Hippolyte Bayard’s Self Portrait as a Drowned Man (1840) was one of the earliest conceptually based photographs. Bayard, apparently provoked by French authorities failing to recognize his discovery of the photographic process as equal to Daguerre’s daguerreotype, faked a self-portrait depicting his own “dead” body with a summary of his demise written on the back of the photograph.

Conceptual photography thrives on the transmission of ideas. Often surreal or hyper-real in their approach, photographers like John Hilliard, Cindy Sherman, and Chema Madoz are well-known figures in the conceptual field. The diversity and scope of conceptual photography has expanded even further with the availability of photo-editing software.

7. Documentary photography

While sometimes confused with one another, documentary photography and photojournalism are two different fields. Documentary photography relates to long-form projects with a discernible storyline threading throughout a series. Photojournalism, on the other hand, focuses more on breaking news stories.

From the poor Depression-era farming communities documented by Dorothea Lange to Diane Arbus’s haunting portraits of marginalized figures, documentary photography shines a light on often underrepresented facets of life. Through their work, a documentary photographer can enhance awareness of a subject or theme and stimulate an emotional response.

8. Event photography

Put simply, an event photographer specializes in photographing events. Whether focused on a corporate occasion, a birthday, a wedding, or a funeral, event photography is as broad as the many occasions that warrant a photographer on site to capture the moment.

As with all types of photography, preparation is the key to a successful event shoot. Events can be held indoors, outdoors, or both, so lighting conditions can be complex and changeable. Packing a good low-light camera body and lens with a wide maximum aperture is useful for situations where flash might not be appropriate. And creating a shot checklist that is agreed upon by both photographer and client is a good way to establish and capture the images a client is after.

That said, depending on the event, you’ll want to keep an eye out for candid moments and little details; that way, you can create a more intimate collection of event images for the client. Also, don’t forget to stock up on memory cards and batteries.

9. Film photography

Nowadays, digital technology is the dominant medium for image making. Nevertheless, there are still many photographers who use film to create beautiful imagery.

Film photography can slow down the photographic process, encouraging a more mindful creative approach. A limited amount of film frames can also encourage photographers to shoot more conscientiously, and the use of manual settings can test and refresh technical knowledge.

The aesthetic value of film photography is both nostalgic and dimensional, with quirky cameras like the the Diana or Holga range also enabling spontaneous photography that intersects with the whimsy of cheap toy film cameras.

10. Food photography

There are distinct artistic and technical skills that come with every photographic genre, and food photography is no different. Under the camera lens, food can become a tasty still life artwork rather than your average meal.

The first known photograph of food as a subject was a daguerreotype taken in 1845 by Henry Fox Talbot. His photograph depicted a pineapple and some peaches contained in two baskets set atop a plaid tablecloth. Originally, foods were often photographed in an arrangement similar to the way people were accustomed to encountering a meal – the food was laid out on a table and photographed from overhead (mimicking the point of view of the consumer).

Today, meticulous lighting, selective focus, motion, extreme close-ups, overhead or flat lay perspectives, narrow-angle shots, and a shallow depth of field are just some of the carefully applied techniques designed to create a scene that appeals to a viewer’s taste buds. The introduction of contextual props, shooting in or staging a relevant space (like a café or restaurant), and focusing on compositional tenets like line, texture, and color can also help craft an inviting food-related image.

11. Intentional Camera Movement photography Canon 5D Mark II | Canon EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM | f/4 | 4s | ISO 400

Intentional Camera Movement (or ICM) is one of the more experimental types of photography. Put simply, ICM involves selecting a slower shutter speed and moving the camera and/or zooming during the exposure. The process creates impressionistic renderings of a scene that are marked by the physicality of the photographer.

Getting started with ICM photography is pretty simple. You’ll need a camera with semi-automatic or manual modes and a good camera strap. Secure the camera strap and set the shutter speed to around 1/15s. Press the shutter and physically move the camera around and/or adjust the lens focal length.

When the exposure finishes, check the LCD screen (if possible), take note of the results, and move on to the next frame, making adjustments to camera settings if necessary. The ICM process is experimental and endlessly varied, so trying many different combinations of gesture, camera settings, and subject matter is all part of the fun.

12. Landscape photography

Typically, landscape photographers capture natural (or sometimes semi-natural) vistas. Often showing little to no human activity, landscape photography focuses on strongly defined landforms usually illuminated with ambient light. Some of the most beautiful landscape photographs are motivated by a photographer’s appreciation of natural beauty and the need to see it preserved. Renowned landscape photographer Ansel Adams received both a Conservation Service Award and a Presidential Medal of Freedom in recognition of the influence his work had on the preservation of wilderness and the cultivation of environmental consciousness.

Prior planning goes a long way in photography, and landscape photography is no different. Scouting possible locations before shooting (if only through Google Maps) and calculating light and weather conditions with apps are important steps in the landscape photography process.

In terms of equipment, there are many different approaches to landscape photography. Some photographers pack a wide-angle lens, while others rely on a zoom or prime lens configuration. Regardless of which way you go in terms of lenses, a polarizing filter, a sturdy tripod, and a shutter release cable or intervalometer are major assets. A weatherproof camera setup can come in handy, too.

13. Macro photography Canon 5D Mark II | Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II with extension tubes | f/2 | 1/500s | ISO 100

In the early 1900s, F. Percy Smith started photographing small natural subjects with the use of extension tubes and bellows. The increased distance between the negative and the lens culminated in enlarged renderings of subject matter. Nowadays, macro photography involves the use of specialized equipment to obtain close-up images of small subjects that are hard to discern with the naked eye.

With a wealth of lenses, filters, and extension tube configurations to choose from, macro photography provides a fascinating insight into the vivid details that make up our surroundings. Insects, plant life, small animals, snowflakes, raindrops, and spiderwebs are just a few popular macro photography subjects.

14. Minimalist photography Canon 5D Mark II | Canon EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS II USM | f/5 | 1/200s | ISO 100

Minimalist photography is distinguished by its pared-back simplicity, focusing on the smallest amount of objective content possible. Arising from the minimalist art movement of the 1950s, minimalist photography revels in restrained or reductive techniques, appealing to the viewer through simplicity and the shedding of superfluous information.

Minimalist photographers often operate under the assumption that less is more, directing a viewer’s attention to subject matter with efficiency and a judicious use of space. Well-known proponents of minimalist photography include Michael Kenna, Hiroshi Sugimoto, and Uta Barth.

15. Nature photography

Nature photography, as you might imagine, encompasses many types of photography genres. In general terms, nature photography describes photography undertaken outdoors in the hopes of depicting plants, wildlife, and/or natural landscapes. Macro photography is often included under the nature photography heading.

Canon 5D Mark II | Canon EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM | f/4 | 1/80s | ISO 250

Trees, landscapes, beaches, insects, stone formations, wildlife…There are hundreds of nature photography subjects, and the selection of equipment for a nature shoot comes down to subject behavior and the desired outcome of an image.

For example, much of landscape photography is done with wide-angle lenses, but a telephoto lens can be critical for capturing wildlife. A macro lens (or a set of extension tubes) is handy for the close-up photography of plants and insects, while a tripod or monopod will be useful for bracing the camera and keeping things steady when a slower shutter speed is required. A camera body that performs well in low-light conditions and features weatherproofing is also ideal. And if you decide to pack all of the above options for one trip, investing in a good backpack is advisable.

There are some environmental concerns involving nature photography. The destruction of a landscape can be caused by the incautious efforts of photographers prioritizing a photograph over the natural environment. Wildlife photography encompasses photographing animals in their natural habitats, but interrupting, staging, or causing harm in an attempt to make a photograph is unethical, with many photo competitions rejecting submissions that negatively impact the well-being of wild fauna. In short, a leave no trace approach is encouraged.

16. Night photography Canon 5D Mark IV | Canon EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM | f/4 | 1/25s | ISO 200

Night photographers specialize in making images when the sun goes down. From the eerily atmospheric street photos of Jessie Tarbox Beals (the first woman night photographer) to the meticulously staged photography of Gregory Crewdson, night photography is dense, beautiful, and sometimes unsettling.

Photographers working at night can use artificial lighting, ambient lighting, or a combination of the two. Astrophotography is conducted at night and uses longer exposures to capture celestial bodies. Light-trail photography captures illuminated subject movement with a slow shutter speed. Cityscapes photographed at night have a distinctly modern appeal, and nocturnal street photography used in conjunction with flash generates an intimate aesthetic.

17. Photojournalism

Photojournalism is the gathering, editing, and presenting of photographic news material. Sometimes conducted in the face of danger, photojournalism has a long history, with many of its proponents advancing the overall course of photography with dedication, creativity, and daring.

According to the code of ethics created by the National Press Photographers Association (NPPA), “It is the individual responsibility of every photojournalist at all times to strive for pictures that report truthfully, honestly, and objectively.” The staging or manipulation of a scene through the direction of the photographer is considered un-photojournalistic or unethical. With the evolving use of modern post-processing techniques, the idea of truthful photojournalism has become an increasingly complicated facet of reportage. In general, a minimal approach to editing is advised, and sticking to simple edits (cropping, contrast adjustments, etc.) is a relatively common photojournalistic guideline.

18. Portrait photography

Portraiture or portrait photography aims to capture the essence of a person or group through photography. The art of portraiture grew with the daguerreotype in the mid-19th century. Reduced sitting times and the relatively low cost of the photographic process saw a general rise in the popularity of early portraiture. Subjects were often positioned against plain backgrounds and illuminated with soft natural lighting. As technology advanced, exposure times shortened further, and the ability to make portraits outside the studio became increasingly common.

Today, there are a range of techniques and approaches to portraiture. The traditional portrait involves a subject (usually in a studio setting), often looking towards the camera. The environmental portrait features a subject situated in a specific environment for context and narrative. A street portrait depicts a subject in a street setting. Conceptual portraiture is shot with an emphasis on ideas based around the sitter, while the self portrait involves a photographer taking a photograph of themselves.

19. Sports photography

Sports photography is a type of photography that covers sporting events. Sometimes considered a branch of photojournalism, sports photographers capture the unfolding drama of a sporting occasion.

Long lenses and camera bodies with high continuous shooting speeds allow for greater reach across the playing field and an increased chance of capturing the perfect shot. However, regular zooms, wide-angle lenses, and prime lenses may also be used during closer encounters, and a sports photographer can have several camera configurations at the ready.

Other important sports photography equipment includes a monopod or tripod. The use of drones and strategically placed cameras triggered by wireless shutter actuators are useful for certain sports activities. And although you never know how a game is going to play out for certain, a good general knowledge of the sporting event always helps to close in on those key moments.

20. Still life photography

Still life is the art of taking photographs of (usually) inanimate subjects. With roots in painting, genres like food photography, object portraiture, flat lay photography, and tabletop photography often coexist under the still life banner. However, there are two main types of still life photography: found still life and created still life.

Found still life photographs feature subjects captured without a photographer’s influence or manipulation. An example of a found still life subject could be an apple fallen from a tree. In contrast, created still life photographs feature objects that the photographer has purposely arranged or manipulated; artificial subjects like vessels (pots, vases, baskets) are often balanced with organic subject matter like flowers, food, vegetables, shells, etc. Well-known masters of still life photography include Olive Cotton, Jan Groover, Sharon Core, and Josef Sudek.

21. Street photography

Street photographers candidly capture life in the public domain, avoiding direct interactions with the subject. And unlike the name suggests, street photography can be done off the beaten track, too – beaches, indoor settings, and rural areas hold just as much potential for street photographers as big cities and crowded streets.

Canon 5D Mark II | Canon EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM | f/4 | 1/500s | ISO 500

As for gear, street photographers generally use a smaller camera that’s less visible and therefore less intrusive or intimidating; such cameras are also lighter to carry around during the hours spent roaming the streets.

In addition, a camera may come with a soft or silent shutter mode for surreptitious exposures. Although the versatility of a zoom lens can be useful in some circumstances, the classic prime lens is more subtle, lessening the chance of interference. The nifty fifty or 50mm lens is a popular choice for street photographers.

22. Travel photography

Shaped by magazines like National Geographic, travel photography depicts a broad variety of subject matter. According to the Photographic Society of America, a travel photograph is a photograph “that expresses the feeling of a time and place, portrays a land, its people, or a culture in its natural state, and has no geographical limitations.”

Canon 5D Mark II | Canon EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM | f/6.3 | 1/200s | ISO 100

As the accessibility of travel increases, the genre of travel photography has been taken up by photographers at all levels. Dedicated travel photographers once earned wages through magazine assignments, commercial undertakings, and stock photography. Nowadays, professional travel photographers also turn to blogging, teaching, touring, and public speaking to generate income.

23. Typological photography

Typological photography is not defined by a particular area of subject matter, but rather by the process and presentation of a photographic series. Typology in itself is the study of types or the systematic classification of subjects according to their common characteristics. Therefore, typological photography aims to document subjects that are similar in nature or theme, creating a visual body of work to compare, contrast, and appreciate as a whole.

A photographic typology of road sealant.

Hilla and Bernd Becher, who made extensive photographic studies of industrial buildings and structures, forged a highly influential style of typological photography. As artists working in collaboration, the married pair recorded and then categorized the formal qualities of their subjects into a neat grid layout. They also maintained a consistent approach in photographing their subjects, relying on a foundation of uniformity to articulate the similarities and differences of each subject alone and as part of a whole. Today, much of modern typological photography revolves around this visual cohesion.

24. Underwater photography

The world below the water’s surface can be as fascinating as it is alien. Underwater photography is the use of specialized photography equipment to document the expanse of an aquatic landscape and its inhabitants (hopefully without drowning your camera equipment in the process!).

The first underwater photograph was believed to have been made by Englishman William Thompson in 1856. Thompson built a metal box housing for a camera to capture the marine landscape of Weymouth Bay in Dorset, England. The shutter was activated by pulling a string on the surface. Much later, in 1960, Jacques Cousteau’s Calypso was invented – the first amphibious 35mm film camera. Today, waterproof housings with control knobs and buttons are industry standard, with some including connectors for external flash units. Rugged compact cameras can also be used in shallow water without housings.

25. Urbex Photography Canon 5D Mark II | Canon EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM | f/6.3 | 1/80s | ISO 100

Urbexing (short for urban exploring) is the exploration of human-made structures usually found in a state of abandonment or ruin. Popular urbexing sites include abandoned houses, neglected industrial sites and offices, and dilapidated schools or churches. Many urbex explorers abide by the philosophy “take nothing but pictures, leave nothing but footprints.”

Incorporating photography into an urbexing expedition, many urbexers maintain websites or a social media presence to document their findings.

26. Weather photography

Although weather photography can encompass any kind of meteorological phenomenon, the term has become synonymous with photographing lightning, storms, sunsets, and other dramatic weather events.

Photographers have braved the elements to photograph weather phenomena for over a hundred years. In 1884, a photographer from Kanas named A.A. Adams captured a single image of a cyclone twisting just 14 miles away from where he’d set up his box camera. Today, basic weather photography gear usually encompasses a lightning or remote camera trigger, a sturdy tripod, and a camera with manual and/or Bulb settings. Like landscape photography, wide-angle lenses are useful for capturing large vistas of scenery and weather activity. ND filters and an intervalometer are nice to have, too.

Monitoring meteorological activity and finding locations well before a shoot is a good idea. When dynamic weather activity unfolds, scrambling for a last-minute scenic spot is less than ideal. Above all else, safety and common sense are paramount – shoot storms from a distance, keep up to date with weather notifications and warnings, stay away from metal poles, trees, and open areas, have good weatherproof clothing, and invest in rain protection for your camera.

Types of photography: final words

There are so many different photographic genres that it’s difficult to cover them all in a single article. Nevertheless, a solid knowledge of different types of photography opens the door to new photographic opportunities.

If you’re tiring of landscape photography, why not take up astrophotography? Do you have experience in sports photography? Why not branch out into pet photography? The possibilities are endless, and with a good knowledge of photographic genres, new opportunities are always available!

Now over to you:

Do you have a favorite photographic genre? Do you plan to take up any of the genres discussed in this article? Share your thoughts in the comments below!

The post 26 Types of Photography to Explore (for Inspiration) appeared first on Digital Photography School. It was authored by Megan Kennedy.

Photoshop Eraser Tool: A Comprehensive Guide (2021)

Wed, 08/25/2021 - 06:00

The post Photoshop Eraser Tool: A Comprehensive Guide (2021) appeared first on Digital Photography School. It was authored by Ana Mireles.

Are you wondering how to use the Photoshop Eraser Tool? And more importantly, are you wondering when you should use it?

You’ve come to the right place. In this guide, I’ll show you how the Eraser Tool works – and I’ll give you some tips that’ll help you master it. You’ll also learn when to use the Eraser Tool, along with several helpful alternatives.

Let’s get started!

The Eraser Tool: 3 different versions

Nearly every tool in Photoshop comes in several different versions; to reveal these options, click and hold a tool icon. A menu will appear with each tool variation:

In the case of the Photoshop Eraser Tool, you’ll find three variations:

  • The regular Eraser Tool
  • The Background Eraser Tool
  • The Magic Eraser Tool

Let’s see what each can do and how they are different from each other, starting with the standard Eraser Tool:

1. Eraser Tool

The standard Eraser Tool is as straightforward as it gets. It erases the pixels underneath the cursor – whatever they are.

You can determine whether to use the Eraser Tool as a Brush, a Pencil, or a Block. For the Brush and the Pencil, you can choose the size, hardness, and opacity of your cursor’s brush.

Click once, and you’ll erase whatever is underneath the cursor (though a big brush will delete more than a small brush, of course).

Make sure the layer you’re working on is unlocked, and that transparent pixels are unlocked, too (the transparent pixels can be locked or unlocked via the checker icon on top of the Layers panel; see the circled icon in the image above).

2. Background Eraser Tool

The Background Eraser Tool tends to confuse and disappoint Photoshop beginners. The name suggests that it automatically erases the background of your image, thus eliminating the tedious work of selecting – but I’m afraid that’s not how it works.

Instead, the Background Eraser Tool samples whatever is underneath the middle of the cursor (marked with a +) and deletes areas that match the sampled color.

You can adjust how the Background Eraser Tool conducts its sampling. Continuous Sampling means that it will update the sample as you move the cursor. On the image above, for example, I can drag the Tool along the edge between the sky and the trees and it will delete only the blue from the sky. However, if I touch the branches, the Background Eraser will start deleting the trees.

Switch the sampling to Once, and the Background Eraser will erase anything with the color it sampled upon your first click. This is ideal when you want to remove intricate areas like sky between leaves.

Finally, the Background Swatch sampling mode will delete anything matching Photoshop’s current Background Color. This is best used with solid colors because a graduated blue – like the one in the sky, above – will leave a lot of areas untouched.

The Background Eraser Tool is only available as a brush, but you can adjust the Limits and Tolerance to fine-tune according to your needs.

3. Magic Eraser With one click on a sample point, the Magic Eraser deletes bigger areas where the pixels have the same or a similar color.

The Magic Eraser works like the Magic Wand selection tool, except it erases pixels instead of selecting them; one click, and it erases anything that matches the color under the cursor.

You can adjust the Tolerance to delete more or fewer shades of the sampled color. You can also determine if you want to erase only adjacent areas or if you want to delete anything with that color, regardless of its location in the image. Check the Anti-alias option if you want to minimize jagged edges.

How to use the Eraser Tool: the basics

Using the Photoshop Eraser Tool is dead simple. Just follow these steps:

  1. Unlock the layer you want to eraser. Make sure transparent pixels are unlocked, too.

  2. Select the Eraser Tool you want to use (regular Eraser, Background Eraser, or Magic Eraser).

  3. Customize the tool. Depending on the type of Eraser you’ve selected, you’ll have different customization options.

  4. Click and drag to erase the desired area.

  5. Check for any remaining pixels. If necessary, go back and erase over areas again.

  6. Save the image as a PNG file to preserve the transparency of deleted pixels.

Tips for using the Photoshop Eraser Tool

Now that you’re familiar with the Eraser Tool basics, I’d like to share some simple tips and tricks to improve your results:

1. Always keep an original backup The Photoshop Eraser is a destructive tool, so always work on a copy.

The Eraser is a destructive tool. In other words, if you delete pixels, they’ll be gone for good. You can bring them back with the Undo command, but that’s only if you haven’t closed and re-opened the file.

So before using the Eraser, always, always, always make a backup of your work.

For instance, you can duplicate the layer you plan to Erase; that way, if you mess up, you can always delete your worked-on version and start over with the duplicated layer.

Another option is to work with a copy of your file, rather than the original. Then, when things go downhill, you always have the original to save the day.

2. Use the keyboard shortcuts

To move more efficiently through your editing process, you can use the ‘E‘ key to activate the Eraser Tool.

Then tap ‘Shift + E‘ to toggle between the different types of Erasers.

3. Erase to History

If you’ve saved a state or made a snapshot, the Erase to History option will erase the changes made since that last save.

You can find this feature in the Options bar of the Erase tool.

When should you use the Eraser Tool in Photoshop?

The Photoshop Eraser Tool has limited applications. But for those few times when you need it, you’ll be happy it exists!

Here are several situations when the Eraser Tool can make a big difference:

1. When you need transparency

Sometimes, it’s not enough to hide pixels in the current document – you actually need to keep the area empty and transparent for use on images elsewhere.

This can happen when you’re preparing several images for a photo composite, or when you’re creating a logo to place on top of other images.

(Remember to save your file as a PNG. Otherwise, the transparent areas will be filled with white pixels by default.)

Always use a PNG format to save a partially erased image. 2. When you need to fine-tune channel masks

When you make a layer mask, you’ll notice that a new channel is created.

If you head to this new channel and use the Eraser Tool in Block mode, you can make adjustments to the black pixels to modify the mask (though make sure you zoom in for better results).

Eraser Tool alternatives

Not sure if the Eraser Tool is the right way to go? Here are several alternatives to the Eraser Tool that will help you achieve similar results.

Layer masks hide the pixels instead of deleting them. 1. Layer masks

Layer masks are a non-destructive way of “erasing” parts of your image. Technically, you’re not deleting those pixels – that’s why it’s non-destructive.

Instead, you’re just hiding the pixels you don’t want. If you change your mind and decide to make them visible again, you can disable the layer mask – or unmask the parts that you want visible.

2. Auto Erase

Despite the name, this isn’t a feature found as part of the Photoshop Eraser Tool. Instead, you’ll find it in the Pencil tool.

When you activate the Pencil and enable the Auto Erase option, you paint – with the background color – any pixels that have the foreground color. And if you paint over an area that doesn’t have the foreground color, you replace that color with the foreground color.

The Photoshop Eraser Tool: final words

I hope this article clarified your doubts about the mysterious and often underestimated Photoshop Eraser Tool. Go ahead and test it out the next time you’re in Photoshop. See how it goes. Yes, it has something of a niche effect, but it’s occasionally very helpful.

Now over to you:

Do you have any tips or advice for using the Eraser Tool? Share them in the comments below!

The post Photoshop Eraser Tool: A Comprehensive Guide (2021) appeared first on Digital Photography School. It was authored by Ana Mireles.

11 Photography Tips for Absolute Beginners (How to Get Started)

Tue, 08/24/2021 - 06:00

The post 11 Photography Tips for Absolute Beginners (How to Get Started) appeared first on Digital Photography School. It was authored by Lea Hawkins.

So you’ve decided to take up photography – but how do you begin? How do you deal with gear, camera settings, and Photoshop? More importantly, how do you start getting beautiful pictures, fast?

In this article, I aim to share plenty of advice for photography beginners, including:

  • How to buy the right gear
  • Tips for improving your skills ASAP
  • How to choose the right camera settings
  • Where to start with post-processing

Are you ready to jumpstart your photography hobby? Let’s dive right in!

1. Research gear (but don’t go overboard)

Your gear does not make you a good photographer.

In fact, if you are just starting out, a top of the line camera will not only be a waste of money, but it will also make your learning process trickier. A bit like buying a race car to learn to drive.

When you want to buy gear – whether it’s your first camera/lens/accessory or your tenth – do your research. It’s helpful to take a look at some photography forums or articles for camera recommendations. Once you find something that sounds viable and fits your budget, read professional and user reviews to determine whether it’ll satisfy your needs.

2. Take lots of photographs

“Your first ten thousand photographs are your worst.” – Henri Cartier-Bresson

As with any skill, the more you practice, the better you get. So the quickest way to get better? Simply head out with a camera and start taking pictures.

Of course, knowledge does matter, but there’s something essential about holding a camera in your hands, looking through the viewfinder, and considering different compositions. Aim to spend at least a few hours every week behind the lens (and more is better!). It doesn’t necessarily matter what you shoot – as long as you’re shooting, you’re improving.

And don’t beat yourself up if your shots don’t turn out the way you’ve envisioned. Part of photography is about failing repeatedly; over time, you’ll learn how to get the result you want, and you’ll come home with more and more keepers.

3. Read the manual

Camera manuals are quite possibly the most boring thing you have ever read in your life, and reading the camera manual is certainly the most boring thing you’ll ever do in pursuit of photographic improvement.

That said, I suggest you do it anyway.

Camera manuals are not exactly a riveting read.

Why? It’s important to know how your camera actually works, especially in the beginning. And the information will become useful down the line, too. You’ll be out in the field and you’ll want to know how to change a particular setting; if you’ve read the manual thoroughly, you’ll be able to figure it out on the fly. On the other hand, if you haven’t read the manual, you’ll be forced to look up instructions on your phone, and by then your photo opportunity will likely have disappeared.

Of course, you don’t need to read the manual all at once. I recommend you place it where you can push through in small installments while you are killing time, such as the bathroom, the car, or at work during your lunch break.

4. Don’t start with workshops

So you’ve got the photography bug. You might be thinking, “Ooh! I’ll sign up to a bunch of workshops; that way, I can improve really fast.”

And workshops are great. But they tend to be geared more toward enthusiasts – photographers who understand the basics and are looking to level up their skills in composition, lighting, and advanced techniques. That’s why I don’t recommend going nuts with workshops right away. Instead, you should really start with the basics:

  • How to operate your camera
  • The meaning of different photography terminology
  • How to determine the proper settings for the situation

Fortunately, you’ve already taken a step in the right direction, because you are currently reading one of the most useful photography sites on the internet. There are more tips and tutorials on this site than you will ever need, especially for a beginner. Once you get the hang of things, then you’ll have a better idea of the type of workshops that would suit you, and you might consider that route.

So I’m not saying that you shouldn’t do a workshop – just that you should wait until you know what suits your needs.

5. Connect with other photographers

Learning photography with others is often invaluable – whether you sign up to an online group or you join a local camera club.

For one, your photography will progress faster, plus it will be far more fun with the help of your fellow shutterbugs.

Connecting with other photographers is a great way to learn and get inspired.

Camera clubs often have monthly competitions and may organize photo tours, exhibitions, and other activities. Talking with knowledgeable photographers or even fellow beginners will not only inspire you, but also keep you motivated.

Also, sign up to some reputable photography newsletters and Facebook pages, or even reach out to photographers you admire. Most professional photographers don’t mind answering a few questions, as long as you are respectful, polite, and don’t demand too much of their time.

6. Try everything

This piece of advice is short and sweet.

While you may have taken up photography with a certain genre or subject in mind, it can be helpful to try all genres. You never know what you might have a knack for, or what you will learn along the way.

So shoot landscapes. Shoot portraits. Head out to the streets and do some urban photography. Find a beautiful flower and photograph close ups.

You never know; you might find a genre that you absolutely love and hadn’t ever considered.

7. Get feedback

Your friends and family may love you, but they will lie to you about your photography (and they may not even know what to look for). Unless you have a very honest friend or family member who actually knows a bit about art, it’s often more beneficial to get feedback from strangers.

Signing up to a photo sharing site where others can comment on your work will get you mostly honest feedback (sometimes brutally so). Years back, I posted the image below on a feedback site. I knew the image had faults, but I was keen to hear what someone else could point out and how they could help me improve.

Well, one fellow submitted a lengthy comment, basically pulling the image apart. He pointed out what seemed like several million faults, and he really went to town on it. But while the comments were painful and borderline unkind, it was useful advice that I could then apply to my next portrait photo shoot.

8. Enter free competitions

If you have money to spend and confidence in your work, by all means, enter some of the big competitions – even as a beginner. You wouldn’t be the first to take a major prize within the first few months of picking up a camera.

Even if you don’t want to spend money to enter competitions, there are plenty of free options. Throw in some images, see how the contest goes, and hey – maybe you’ll win!

9. Aim to get off Auto mode

If you really want to be a good photographer, this is vital.

Because while Auto mode is useful enough when you’re just getting started, it’ll eventually hold you back, and it’ll certainly prevent you from realizing your full potential.

You don’t need to rush, though. At first, just enjoy photographing, even if that means using Auto mode all the time.

Then slowly move up the ladder as you familiarize yourself with Program mode, Aperture Priority mode, and eventually Manual mode.

In truth, manual settings aren’t nearly as difficult as some beginners think. It can be a bit like learning to drive. In the beginning, it’ll be challenging to manage gears, indicators, and steering, all while trying not to veer off the road. But with a bit of patience and practice, it’ll become second nature.

(When you are ready to try manual settings, there are plenty of beginner guides and cheat sheets here on dPS!)

10. Get a post-processing program

To become a serious photographer, you’ll eventually need an editing program.

Why? Because these days, editing is an essential part of the photographic process. If you want your photos to look their best, then you must learn to edit.

These days, your “darkroom” can sit with you in bed (alongside some extras!)

Which post-processing program is best?

Well, there are free programs such as Darktable and GIMP, which are nice but have their limitations. Then there are the big guns like Photoshop and Lightroom, which can be daunting for beginners. Personally, I recommend just forging ahead with Lightroom; if you intend to eventually get serious with your photography, it’s a hugely useful tool to understand, plus it’s not as difficult as it might initially seem.

Alternatively, you might consider an option such as ON1 Photo RAW or Luminar 4, both of which are slightly more beginner friendly than Lightroom yet pack a lot of power.

11. Have fun

This is the best and most important part of photography:

The enjoyment of it!

Don’t get bogged down by unsuccessful attempts or by comparing yourself to professionals. Even the best photographers in the world were beginners at some point. Just keep taking photographs, keep learning, keep challenging yourself, and above all, keep enjoying the fun you can have with photography!

Photography tips for beginners: final words

Hopefully, you’re now feeling inspired – and you’re ready to continue the learning process.

Photography is an adventure, and it’s a fun one, too. Sure, there will be ups and downs, but in the end, you’ll be glad you persevered!

The post 11 Photography Tips for Absolute Beginners (How to Get Started) appeared first on Digital Photography School. It was authored by Lea Hawkins.

6 Tips for Avoiding a Foggy Lens

Mon, 08/23/2021 - 06:00

The post 6 Tips for Avoiding a Foggy Lens appeared first on Digital Photography School. It was authored by Jim Hamel.

Has this ever happened to you?

  1. You are on vacation at the beach. You decide to photograph the sunrise or sunset, so you grab your camera from your hotel room and head out. You get to the perfect spot and look through the viewfinder at the beautiful sunrise/sunset – only to find that your lens is completely fogged over. You wipe away the condensation from the front of the lens, but it instantly comes right back. Over and over again.
  2. You’re in your car, and you spot something you want to photograph. You pull over, hop out, and set up the shot – only to find that the lens is fogged over, and every time you wipe it away, the fog comes right back. You miss the shot.

In coastal and tropical environments, lens fog happens all the time. Transferring your camera and lens from a cool, low-humidity location like your car or hotel room to a warmer, high-humidity environment causes condensation to form on the lens – which, in turn, causes you to miss photos (and can increase lens issues down the road).

Plus, humid environments are where most folks go on vacation/holiday, and therefore where they tend to take the most pictures. Meaning that the foggy lens problem ruins a lot of shots.

So what do you do? How do you keep a camera from fogging up? And once it’s happened, how do you deal with the condensation? Is there any way to defog a lens?

Read on to find out.

Dealing with a foggy lens

So how do you fix this problem?

Well, I have bad news:

Once your lens is foggy, there’s not a quick and easy fix. There are a few things you can try, which will be addressed at the end of the article, but you just have to keep wiping off your lens and waiting for it to acclimate. This can take a while. Sometimes it just takes a few minutes for the lens to acclimate and stop fogging over, but other times it can take half an hour.

Taken at sunrise in the Florida Keys. Although this shot turned out okay, check out the photos below, which were taken minutes before with a foggy lens. I’m lucky I didn’t miss the sunrise entirely. Here is a similar shot to the one above, but this one was taken before the lens had a chance to acclimate to the warm, humid air outside my hotel.

So: since there’s no on-the-spot fix, you have to avoid the problem in the first place – by letting your camera and lens acclimate ahead of time.

Obviously, you cannot just leave your camera bag lying around outside. You will need to let everything acclimate safely. Here are some tips for preventing a foggy lens while keeping your camera gear safe:

1. Leave the camera outside (but in a safe place)

If you have a secure hotel balcony, you might put your camera and lens outside to let them acclimate. You probably don’t want to leave gear out overnight, though. Security concerns aside, the coastal environment is not friendly to electronics, and prolonged exposure isn’t great for your camera. You can, however, place the camera and lens out on the balcony or other secure place while you prepare to go out. (Leaving them outside for 30 minutes or so ought to be sufficient.)

If you are getting up early to shoot a sunrise, for example, you might place your camera and primary lens outside immediately after you wake up, and let them acclimate while you are getting ready to go. That will give them some time to fog up and defog before you need to shoot.

(Also, once you’re ready to go, place your camera and lens in your camera bag while still outside, zip it up, then bring it in. You don’t want to reverse all your acclimation work by causing your equipment to cool down all over again!)

2. Keep the camera in the trunk

When you are driving around or headed to your photo shoot location, keep your camera and lenses in the trunk of your car. That way, they avoid the air conditioning and can acclimate to the outside temperature and humidity.

Sometimes, however, you want to keep your camera handy (just in case you come across a great shot). If that’s the case, turn the AC off and roll down the windows. This will keep your camera and lens out of the air conditioning so they acclimate to the temperature and humidity outside, while ensuring you can still grab a shot or two if need be.

3. Get your equipment out of the bag

If you leave your camera and lens in a zipped-up camera bag, the acclimation process will take far longer. A camera bag, while certainly not airtight, will prevent airflow and keep your camera and lens surrounded by cool, dry air – which will cause condensation the moment you open your gear up to the surroundings.

Instead, when you are acclimatizing the camera and lens – whether that be on the hotel balcony, in the trunk of your car, or some other place – keep them outside the camera bag.

Here is another shot taken immediately upon exiting my cool, dry hotel and entering the warm, humid air in the Florida Keys. 4. Remove the caps and filters

The front of your lens likely has the biggest problem with condensation, so that’s the part you should spend the most time and effort acclimating.

While there aren’t many ways to focus acclimation on a specific lens element, you can take off any filters or lens caps. You don’t want an ND filter or a lens cap keeping the warm air from equalizing the temperatures. Because as soon as you take either of these elements off to shoot, the warm air will rush in – and the fogging will occur.

5. Keep a microfiber cloth handy

Once the condensation happens, you just have to ride it out until your camera and lens acclimate. At the same time, you should periodically wipe off the front of the lens. That way, you can see if the condensation is going to return, and whether you can start shooting. If you are not wiping the lens off periodically, you just won’t know.

In addition, if the fogging isn’t too severe, you can wipe off the lens and then quickly snap a shot or two before the lens starts fogging up again. That usually works after the acclimation process has been going on for a while.

So keep a microfiber cloth handy for this reason. If you don’t have one, you can use whatever is available to wipe off your lens, like your shirt (I’d like to scoff at the idea, but I’ve been forced to wipe lenses with my shirt many times).

Before your outing, buy a couple of clip-on microfiber cloths that come in little pouches. You can just clip one to your camera strap and you’ll always have it handy. This will also keep you from having to dig through your bag to find your cloth (because they always head to the bottom in a hard-to-reach corner!).

6. Fix it in post-production

A picture with any significant fogginess due to condensation is a goner. You will not be able to save it.

But if the picture only has a minor amount of fogginess, you can try to clear it up. There are no surefire cures, but my suggestions below will help in some cases.

Your first thought should probably be to increase the contrast and clarity in Lightroom or ACR. That will work a little bit, but a slightly stronger move is to take the photo into the LAB color space and perform a basic LAB color enhancement. A fortunate side-effect of the color enhancement is that you’ll remove haze from the picture.

Again, neither tactic is a magic wand, but they can help.

To conclude on a positive note, here is a shot taken the same morning as the fogged picture above. The lens cleared in time to capture a great sunrise. Yet another reason to get there early! Avoiding a foggy lens: final words

Condensation is definitely a trap for the unwary. Light conditions change fast. Optimal conditions at sunrise and sunset are fleeting. You don’t want to be standing around waiting for the condensation on your lens to disappear!

So take steps to avoid the problem. Acclimate your camera and lens ahead of time, then make sure you are wiping off the front of your lens periodically. It will keep you from missing shots when the light is optimal!

Now over to you:

Do you have any advice for dealing with camera and lens condensation? Any defogging tips or tricks? Share your thoughts in the comments below!

The post 6 Tips for Avoiding a Foggy Lens appeared first on Digital Photography School. It was authored by Jim Hamel.

8 Common Landscape Photography Mistakes (+ How to Fix Them)

Sun, 08/22/2021 - 06:00

The post 8 Common Landscape Photography Mistakes (+ How to Fix Them) appeared first on Digital Photography School. It was authored by Barry J Brady.

Landscape photography is a ton of fun – but even the best landscape shooters make mistakes, which is what this article is all about.

Specifically, I’m going to share the eight mistakes I see all the time, especially in beginner photos. And I’m also going to explain how those mistakes can be fixed, so that the next time you’re out shooting, you know exactly what to do (and what to avoid).

Make sense? Let’s dive right in, starting with the most common landscape photography mistake of all:

1. A lack of stability

In landscape photography, you usually want your images to be sharp all the way through, from front to back. To achieve this effect, you must use a narrow aperture, which in turn will reduce your shutter speed and make your images very prone to blur.

Hence, many landscape photographers return home after shooting, only to find their photos plagued by consistent blurriness.

There’s a simple way to deal with this problem, however: Use a tripod! This is especially important if you’re shooting in low light, but in all honesty, I recommend you take your tripod with you everywhere.

Now, there are tripods and there are tripods. For landscape photography, you might want to invest in a more heavy-duty option; while small, lightweight tripods might do the trick for a while, if you are shooting in the wind, you risk tripod shake (plus, your tripod might get blown over). A good tripod will also last a long time and can take a beating, so buy the best tripod you can afford and keep your camera as still as possible when shooting.

Another good piece of equipment to buy is a remote release. You don’t need one of the expensive ones with a built-in intervalometer; just a simple remote shutter is fine. Once you are set up and ready to take your shot, step back from the camera and press the shutter button. There will be no vibration from you hitting the camera shutter button, and your image will be nice and sharp.

(If you don’t want to purchase a remote release, you could use the self-timer, instead.)

2. Not getting the horizon straight

Many a good landscape image has been ruined by a skewed horizon. And while this can be fixed in Photoshop or Lightroom, you might lose some details along the way – which is why I highly recommend you deal with the horizon in camera, not in post-processing.

You can use a few different tools to make sure your horizon is straight. You might try switching on the grid in your camera viewfinder, then always taking the time to line up the horizon with a horizontal gridline. Some tripod heads even have a built-in spirit level, so ensure this is level and your horizon should be fine.

Alternatively, you can purchase a level that mounts to your camera hot shoe. Just connect the level, then do a quick check before taking your photo.

A crooked horizon is distracting. The image looks better now that the horizon is straight. 3. Shooting only in landscape format

Landscape photography is, well, landscape photography – so photographers assume they should shoot in landscape (horizontal) format.

And generally speaking, this is a good idea. The horizontal orientation emphasizes the sweep of a scene, and it can lend a sense of vastness to the shot.

Except, in some cases, a portrait orientation (vertical) can work well, too – sometimes better than a horizontal orientation. Think of a forest scene. The trees stretch into the sky, so a horizontal format will limit their height rather than show it off, and create a less interesting photo in the process.

Bottom line: If the subject’s shape is more vertical than horizontal, you should try it in the portrait format, as it may give the composition a dynamic presence. And if you’re not sure whether to shoot vertical or horizontal, just do both and sort out the issues later!

Shoot in portrait format, too! 4. Forgetting about the aperture

Aperture is a camera setting – but it’s also a composition tool. And many landscape photographers forget this.

You see, aperture helps determine your depth of field (i.e., the amount of the scene that appears sharp). And by carefully considering the depth of field, you can create different compositional effects.

The moment you start setting up a composition, you should be thinking about your depth of field. Ask yourself: Do I want everything from the foreground to the background to be in focus? Generally, in landscape photography, this will be the case, but if you’d prefer to keep certain areas soft, you should decide early on.

If you do want foreground-to-background sharpness, make sure your aperture is f/8, f/11, or higher. If you shoot at f/2.8 or f/4 and you focus on the foreground, the background will be out of focus, and the middle of your scene will be soft. And once you’ve taken a shallow depth of field photo, it cannot be fixed in Photoshop.

In a landscape image, you will likely want everything in focus. 5. Shooting using the camera’s “landscape” mode

Yes, you may have a landscape setting in the scene modes of your camera. But try to use it as infrequently as possible.

Why? Well, it’s not great at producing an even exposure, plus it can’t determine the proper aperture for a given scene (only you can do that!).

So instead of using your Landscape mode, try switching over to Aperture Priority mode or even Manual mode. Both these options will let you dial in your aperture and ISO, and they’ll also let you tweak the shutter speed for the best results.

At first, this may take some getting used to. You won’t be able to rely on a familiar point-and-shoot mentality. But over time, you’ll become more and more familiar with your camera settings, and you’ll end up with better results than your camera’s automatic Landscape mode could ever achieve.

6. Standing next to other photographers

If you see a group of photographers standing on the top of a hill, here’s my advice:

Shoot from somewhere else.

I don’t mean to imply that the other photographers are taking bad shots. Rather, I’d like to emphasize the importance of originality. Do you want to go home with a shot just like everyone else’s? Or do you want a shot that’s uniquely yours?

Of course, in certain situations, the best composition or vantage point is at one particular spot, and all the photographers will congregate in that area. That’s fine; take a shot from there to start. But then look for other places to get a great shot, too.

(Pro tip: It’s a good idea to scout a scene before you shoot it. Go and take a walk around the area the day before, look at where the sun will be setting, and decide on your position. Don’t simply follow the crowd.)

A different composition of Machu Picchu. 7. Including unnecessary negative space

Negative space is the “empty” area that surrounds your subject, and the inclusion – and exclusion – of negative space can truly make or break your image.

Careful use of negative space can lend your photos a sense of calm and tranquility. But poor use of negative space, as is common in landscape photography, will create static, boring photos.

In most landscape scenes, the sky is the negative space, especially on a clear, sunny day. And you’ll often see beginner landscape photographers include lots of sky in the composition, even though it doesn’t actually add anything interesting to the shot.

So before you include large swathes of sky in your compositions, carefully observe the horizon. Are there elements of interest, such as clouds? Or is there a simple, blank blue?

If the answer is “blank blue,” then make the sky a small portion of your image (of course, if there are some great-looking clouds, then by all means, give it more space in your scene).

This goes for other types of negative space, too. Are you photographing an ocean scene? Make sure not to include too much water, unless it adds atmosphere to the photo. Are you photographing a valley? Make sure not to include lots of empty grass. Got it?

The sky had no clouds, so I made it a small part of the image. 8. Not including a clear subject

It sounds crazy, but it is very easy to have an unclear subject in landscape photography. For instance, if you photograph a forest but just show some random tree chaos, the viewer won’t know where to look – because there’s no clear subject. And if you’re photographing an ocean but you just point your camera at the water and shoot, you’ll end up with some boring water and sky, not a coherent, striking photo.

Instead, identify what matters to you in a scene – and then emphasize it in your shot.

Of course, you don’t need to fill the frame with your subject; it’s perfectly acceptable to show both your subject and the beauty that surrounds it. But if you’re struggling to highlight the subject, do try moving closer or using a longer lens. And check your composition afterward, asking yourself: What stands out? What will the viewer notice? And what do I want the viewer to notice?

If what the viewer will notice and what you want the viewer to notice differ, then you’ve probably made a mistake.

The iceberg in front of the ship is the clear subject. Landscape photography mistakes: final words

Well, there you have it:

The eight landscape photography mistakes to avoid the next time you’re out shooting.

When you’re in the field with your camera, run through these mistakes. Make any corrections, then check the photo. I’m guessing you’ll end up with a much improved result!

Now over to you:

Which of these landscape photography mistakes do you make? Do you have any additional mistakes that deserve to be on this list? Share your thoughts in the comments below!

The post 8 Common Landscape Photography Mistakes (+ How to Fix Them) appeared first on Digital Photography School. It was authored by Barry J Brady.

Photographer’s Dress Code: What to Wear to a Photoshoot

Sat, 08/21/2021 - 06:00

The post Photographer’s Dress Code: What to Wear to a Photoshoot appeared first on Digital Photography School. It was authored by Suzi Pratt.

As a budding photographer, one of the biggest questions that will eventually come to mind is, “What should I wear to a photoshoot? Is there a photographer’s dress code?”

In truth, the answer varies widely – depending on the type of photoshoot you’re conducting, the specific client you’re working with, your overall style and brand as a photographer, and the culture of the region where you’re shooting.

A portrait photographer, for example, may have more flexibility in how they dress compared to a corporate event photographer. Similarly, a photographer shooting on the West Coast of America will likely be able to dress more casually than an East Coast photographer.

That said, here are some general photographer dress code guidelines you can use to get started.

1. Invest in a solid, comfortable pair of shoes

Regardless of what kind of photoshoot you’ll be conducting, start with shoes. Consider that you’ll likely be standing for hours on end, so comfort and ergonomics are key.

Also, think about the terrain you might encounter during your shoot, and think about the seasonal weather. Will there be grassy fields, sandy shores, or other outdoor elements you might walk into? If so, shoes that can take a light beating and still look good will be of utmost importance.

As a female photographer who shoots mainly for corporate clients, I generally opt for black leather flats during the warm season, black leather boots for colder weather, and dressy black leather sneakers for extra long shoots with outdoor elements. In any case, try to stay away from sandals, high heels, and flip flops.

2. Cover up

As a photographer in constant search of creative angles, consider your possible physical maneuvers, such as bending, stooping, and squatting, then dress accordingly.

Make sure to wear an outfit that will allow you to be physically flexible without giving your clients an eyeful, or worse yet, causing a wardrobe malfunction.

Ladies, this means avoiding low-cut tops, ultra-short skirts and dresses, and skimpy outfits. At the very least, bring a blazer or sweater to cover up. Gentlemen, don’t forget a belt and a longer shirt that can be tucked in.

3. Dress in all black

This is a contestable point, as it can also be argued that dressing according to your brand is a better strategy. However, it’s a general rule of thumb that wearing all black is best for a photoshoot.

Why? Black ensures you won’t stand out and take attention away from the main subject. Not to mention that dressing in all black makes you look more official – like a staff member – which can be helpful in navigating around a venue.

Personally, I opt for the all-black rule for my photoshoots, simply because a pre-assembled uniform gives me one less thing to worry about. My uniform consists of mixing and matching from the following selection: one pair of black skinny jeans, one pair of black slacks, a black leather belt, several button-down black blouses, several black polo shirts, and a black blazer. Whenever possible, I try to buy my black clothing in lightweight, moisture-resistant fabrics rather than cotton to avoid sweat absorption.

4. Add a personal touch

Some photographers might contest the above point of dressing in all black with the argument that it’s important to dress according to your brand. This is something I definitely believe in as well, but you can infuse brand elements into your style of dress while wearing all black.

For example, I always make sure to wear a few pieces of statement jewelry to accent my outfit and serve as a conversation starter. I have a couple pairs of unique earrings, necklaces, and watches that almost always attract comments or questions, but they are small enough that they don’t stand out too much.

Another idea is to custom-order black clothing that has your logo on it, such as a polo shirt with a subtle branding element. A photography colleague of mine has done this with huge success; it further reinforces his brand while also making him look and appear more official at photoshoots.

5. When in doubt, ask

If you’re truly stumped on what to wear to a photoshoot, ask your client if they have any preferences. This is likely less important if you’re doing an intimate portrait session, but for event photographers in particular, it never hurts to ask the client.

I once had a corporate photography client who forgot to send over their two-page document detailing their dress code for photographers. Had I not asked, I would never have received proper instruction.

At the very least, it’s important to find out if the dress code for your shoot is formal, semi-formal, or casual, and what exactly those terms mean to the client.

What to wear to a photoshoot: conclusion

To some photographers, what you wear to a photoshoot may not seem like a big deal. But I firmly believe that how you dress is a reflection of your brand, so considering every element of your outfit is crucial.

Now over to you:

What do you wear when you’re conducting photoshoots? Do you have any photography dress code tips? Let me know in the comments below!

The post Photographer’s Dress Code: What to Wear to a Photoshoot appeared first on Digital Photography School. It was authored by Suzi Pratt.

dPS Weekly Photography Challenge : Books

Fri, 08/20/2021 - 16:00

The post dPS Weekly Photography Challenge : Books appeared first on Digital Photography School. It was authored by Sime.

A source of learning and inspiration, books are a part of all (ok, most?) of our lives, some of them even have pages! (yes, that was a side-eyed shot at people who only use e-readers haha) I personally love a great photography book, but I digress… This week your challenge is to make an interesting photograph with a book! I’ve share a few examples below (They’re from Unsplash, this week with home-school here in Melbourne, I’ve had little time to pick up the camera, sadly!)

You can set a scene with a book, use it’s pages to guide your viewer into your photograph, it can be all about the book, as though the book is for sale and you have to make the photo of it that makes people want to buy it – you can come at your photograph from any angle (in every sense) and I really look forward to seeing your different perspectives this week!

Make sure you tag your photographs with #dPSBooks and #dPSWeeklyChallenge if you share them on Instagram, Twitter or Facebook, so that we can spot them and share them.

Aaron Burden from Unsplash Jonas Jacobsson from Unsplash Alex Lvrs from Unsplash Ergita Sela from Unsplash

Four different styles for you to consider, many more options though – it could be a self portrait, a background to a ring (that you may have seen once or a million times in sets of wedding photos)

Make sure you tag us on social if that’s where you choose to post your entry for the weekly challenge.

As ever, some help with sharing your photo into the comments section below (don’t click on this photo to upload your photo, scroll down to the Disqus section, log in, THEN click on the little camera icon in the comments)

Simply upload your shot into the comments field (look for the little camera icon in the Disqus comments section) and they’ll get embedded for us all to see. Or, if you’d prefer, upload them to your favorite photo-sharing site and leave the link to them.

The post dPS Weekly Photography Challenge : Books appeared first on Digital Photography School. It was authored by Sime.

The ZV-E10, Sony’s First Interchangeable-Lens Vlog Camera, Will Ship on the 24th

Fri, 08/20/2021 - 06:00

The post The ZV-E10, Sony’s First Interchangeable-Lens Vlog Camera, Will Ship on the 24th appeared first on Digital Photography School. It was authored by Jaymes Dempsey.

Next week, Sony will release its distinctive new vlogging camera, the ZV-E10, which features a compact build, APS-C image quality, and interchangeable lenses.

Sony’s new camera is “designed from the ground up for vlogging and vloggers,” and aims to provide content creators with a blend of beginner-friendliness, top-notch video, and compactness for a uniquely effective shooting experience. 

While Sony already offers a vlogging camera, the ZV-1, the ZV-E10 aims to keep the best of the former model while improving upon it in a number of ways. Most notably, the ZV-1 is a fixed-lens camera, while the ZV-E10 is compatible with Sony’s range of E-mount glass. The ZV-E10 also outperforms the ZV-1 in terms of image quality, thanks to its powerful APS-C, 24 MP sensor.

And when it comes to video, the ZV-E10 brings the goods. You get 4K/24p shooting with no crop and no pixel binning (4K/30p with a crop factor), not to mention 1080p up to 120 fps, mic and headphone jacks, an excellent inbuilt mic, S-Log recording, and top-notch autofocus. Plus, the high-resolution LCD swivels to the side, so you can preview your video while vlogging:

Sony has even packed in several video-focused features designed for vloggers and other video beginners, such as a “Background Defocus” option, which instantly widens the lens aperture for a beautiful background blur effect. You also get a “Product Showcase Setting,” which tells the camera to focus on products rather than faces.

In other words, if you’re a beginner vlogger, you can get started with pro-looking videos from the get-go. 

The ZV-E10 will also perform well as a beginner stills (or hybrid) camera. The 24 MP sensor comes straight from the highly regarded a6100 and works alongside Sony’s class-leading Real-Time Eye AF and Real-Time Tracking. You can expect an impressive 11 frames-per-second continuous shooting, plus touchscreen autofocusing – making the ZV-E10 an excellent option for action photography, fast-paced walkaround shooting, and more.

The ZV-E10 will begin shipping on August 24th, though it is currently available for preorder. Prices start at $698 USD (body only), though you can also grab the ZV-E10 as part of a camera-lens kit.

If you’re a vlogger or a content-creation beginner and you’re looking for a standout option, the ZV-E10 is not only a powerful camera, but also very reasonably priced. Sony’s first interchangeable-lens vlogging model is bound to be a hit – so grab it next week!

Now over to you:

What do you think of the ZV-E10? Are you impressed? Would you buy it? Or is it missing features you’d like to see in a vlogging camera? Share your thoughts in the comments below!

Credit: All images courtesy of Sony.

The post The ZV-E10, Sony’s First Interchangeable-Lens Vlog Camera, Will Ship on the 24th appeared first on Digital Photography School. It was authored by Jaymes Dempsey.

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