Thursday, August 7, 2008


The Olympic games of Beijing are starting...Here are some tips for shooting beautiful sports photo

1.Shutter speed — Most sports happen quickly, so set yourself up to capture the action. Make sure your shutter speed (length of time a shutter is open) is the same or higher than your lens' focal length (e.g. if you're using a 50 mm lens, make sure to shoot at 125 or faster)
2.Tripod — If you don't already use a tripod or a monopod, now's the time to get one. With a monopod, you have more flexibility to move than a tripod and you can lock your focus, check your focus, on where the action might be in a few minutes or seconds with ease. Some lenses also have a feature called image stabilization which will partially correct minimal camera shake.
3.Tell the story — Don't be afraid to get in close to an athlete. The sweat on a brow, the guttural growl of aggression, the arms-raised cry of victory, the pain of exertion — each of these moments help to tell the story behind the story of sport.

Photographing Children

Too often, parents take only one or two shots of their kids. But this doesn't allow for variables like eyes being closed, heads turned, or half-smiles. Furthermore, for every additional child in the photo, the chances for facial quirks and distractions increase exponentially.
When you can, take at least two shots of a scene, preferably four to five or more, and don't be afraid to keep on clicking if your kids are behaving especially well. The extra snaps will give you variety in expression, perspective, pose and composition.
Shooting hundreds of images is no guarantee of getting a keeper. But balancing that with a little technique and some experience certainly increases your chances. Just use common sense, and don't be afraid to take a few extra snaps!
Working with kids is just plain good fun.The good news is that it's easy to find the joy in photographing kids.
Make the photo session something the child wants to do (i.e. have fun and play), and you'll have a much better chance of accomplishing your own objective - making fabulous portraits that you can be proud of.

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Keeping Horizon Lines and Shorelines Level

Before you go out shooting seascape and landscape scenes,here are some tips to prevent a tilting line or shoreline

Photographing Level Horizons

  • Use a tripod. It helps keep your camera steady - in any position you select - so you can compose your picture more precisely
  • A bubble level often tips you off to any titling.Some tripods come equipped with a level;otherwise,an add-on accessory is available that slips onto the camera's flash shoe.But such a bubble is NOT foolproof (see next item).
  • trust your eye:On occasion,the horizon may not look right,even though the camera appears perfectly level...and even though the bubble level confirms it.In those cases,you may need to actually slant the camera ever so slightly in order to keep the image visually level
  • After composing your shot,check the viewfinder to see if things look "right".Especially:Is there the same amount of sky AND the same amount of land (or sea) on each side of the picture
Lastly: Think of these horizon-line suggestions as take-it-or-leave-it guidelines that you consider thoughtfully, not as hard-and-fast orders that you follow mindlessly. For example, intentionally "rocking the photographic boat" - i.e., with a severe slant - could result in a visually striking "diagonal" image!

Saturday, August 2, 2008

White balance and tone control settings

White Balance

Keep White Balance on 'Auto' most times, but change them when shooting in a light source that does not look right on the LCD (i.e. the picture looks way too yellow, red or blue).
Test before you decide to move on,cause digital cameras allow it without expenses.
If you find that the color still looks a bit 'off', use the camera's Custom White Balance setting. This makes a one-off reading for that specific lighting condition.
Try different White
Balance settings until you find the one that looks better,it can include Tungsten,Fluourescent 1, 2 and 3,bright sun,etc...

Tone Control

You can set your camera to shoot in a range of special tone modes: Contrast, Sharpness, black-and-white, Sepia,etc... Most are a marketing gimmick. While they produce fun results, I'd suggest not using most for the simple reason that it's easier to change the tones later (on a copy) using your picture-editing software.If you really have to (and remember that all three tone settings can be changed easily using a picture-editing software program like Photoshop Elements), the only one really worth adjusting is probably Contrast.Set this to 'low contrast' when shooting in the bright sun (ie. at midday), or to 'high contrast' if the weather is heavily overcast and the lighting flat.

Top 5 digital photography tips

1. Reduce your flash output-The build-in flash of the digital camera puts out to much light very close to the lens causing a bad shoot,so here is what you need to do:
First program your flash output less by setting to -1,or -2,etc.If it's still putting out to much light,you can partly cover the flash head with your finger when it making the picture.The light of the flash going through your finger will be softer and much warmer

2. Avoid high contrast situations-It causes trouble for both film and digital photography,because if the highlights and shadows are too extreme you will lose detail in both areas.Therefore,try your best to avoid high contrast situations.Patchy lights is a classic example of what to avoid.

3. Move in closer-Each time you spot a subject, snap a shot and then move in closer for a better shot. Having your subject almost fill the frame helps your viewer understand and appreciate your photo. Also, details are often more interesting than an overall view.Keep moving in closer until you are sure the photo will successfully represent your subject.

4. Compose with care- Make every effort to keep the photo balanced and beautiful. On one level or another, everyone responds better to a picture that has all elements in balance.Strive to lead the eye along an interesting path through the photo, with the use of strong lines or patterns.
  • Keep the horizon level;
  • Crop out extra elements that you are not interested in (more on this is the next tip);
  • Consciously place your subject where you think it most belongs rather than just accepting it wherever it happens to land in the photo;
  • Play with perspective so that all lines show a pattern or lead the eye to your main subject
  • Keep anything that would distract out of the picture.
  • Focus on your subject
5. Keep your camera settings simple-This doesn't necessarily mean keeping your camera set on "Program" - while this mode may be perfect in its simplicity, it may be frustrating in its tyrannical control.Instead of relying on a fully automatic program, pick a simple, semi-automatic program such as aperture-priority and master shooting in that mode. Then, you'll be able to control certain basics without letting the other basics control you, and thus keep that 150 page manual where it belongs - in your camera bag.Also bring a tripod. This one item can solve camera shake issues and help you get beautiful evening shots.