Tag: Tips

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Macro photography can be done in many ways. You can choose which direction you want to go about it, whether that is through focus stacking or just having fun with it, being satisfied with what you can get. Like all things with photography it is up to you. The same can be said for processing your macro images.
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A bit of a catch up

It has been almost a week since I got back from Tasmania and I have landed back in Victoria running. I’m trying to finish a photography job I have for the local council and I’m doing an online course to help work out how to use Facebook. If you already follow me on there you might have noticed I’m posting more and sharing more. I want to build it up, and here as well, so I’m going to offer some new things.
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This post is usually done on a Friday, but to be honest, I don’t really have any news. I’m trying to get some articles written and I’ve been away for a few days. I thought perhaps we could just look at what I’ve posted to Instagram for the last week. We will see what happens in the following week.

Here are my Instagram images. If you do follow me on Instagram then you will also know that with each post I give tips on taking photos or processing them.

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It is almost a year since I got serious about Instagram and in that time I have gone from about 340 followers to 10.3 thousand. I like to think that is a great achievement, though I don’t know if it is. Mind you it has taken a lot of work to get that many and I’ve worked really hard. I haven’t really seen any benefits from it, but I do love Instagram and the images you see from others are awe inspiring. I get so much inspiration from looking at what is there. I’ve found new places I want to go and photograph.

One thing that I have found, is that I know, I don’t want to be a landscape photographer. Instagram is flooded with images of waterfalls and mountains with lakes in front of them. It has always been my thing to try to be different. It is so easy to fall into the trap of being the same as everyone else. Play the popularity contest.

I believe you have to be true to yourself and do what makes you feel good. I want my work to stand out from the crowd, and I know that often means an image won’t get so many likes, but it has to be about more than that.

I am an artist first, always. I don’t like to think of myself as a photographer, because I’m not, not really. Yes, I take photos, but I do so much more as well. I’m an artist and my medium is photography, and maybe Photoshop is also my medium. I love seeing what I can do on the computer and I will work on an image for hours, over a whole day sometimes. This is what I do.

I am going to start talking about this a lot more, I hope you won’t mind.

Here are my photos from the last week on Instagram. If you want to find out more about the images, take a look at my Instagram feed, there are descriptions and tips there.

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Old Car on a Hill

This went up on most of my social media sites this morning. It is an old car that sits on a hill at the Pink Lakes in the Murray Sunset National Park up in the Mallee.

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When the image went up on Instagram I also put a tip with it. If you want to see that you will have to take a look at my Instagram page.

I have decided that I will start posting photos like this here on days I don’t normally blog. For the Catching Up posts I will be posting photos that have been on my other blog. I have to start deleting files over there as at the end of the year I will lose my extra storage, domain name and a few other things. I need to get the media down below 3 GB, so I have been deleting many photos, mainly the ones that aren’t mine, like Monochrome Madness and the Introduction posts. It will be nice to see some of the older photos here. I might even repost some of the Weekend Wandering Posts.  I hope you will enjoy seeing them again as well.

Those of you who follow my other blog have seen the photos I put up today of the milky way over Lake Lascelles in Hopetoun on Wednesday night.  For those of you who don’t follow it, here is a link, click here.

I have also done a post here on photographing the milky way, so if you want more information on that, then just go back a few posts.

Today I thought I might give you some tips on processing your images of the milky way.  Here is an image with no processing, it is straight out of the camera with no processing at all, well except to straighten it.

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You can see it there, but it is hard to see the milky way.  So after processing, it looks like this.

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You can see the milky way in this a whole lot more, it is better defined.  It is actually very easy to do and there are a few things to play with.  I used Photoshop Camera Raw to do these, but you can do the same things in Lightroom.

  • Put the contrast up.
  • Give the image more black.  If you don’t have that option you may be able to do it with levels.
  • Give it a touch of clarity, not too much
  • You can go to noise reduction and turn up the luminance to get rid of some of the noise.

That is about all I do, sometimes I might tone down the highlights, or up the exposure or put it down a little, but those things will give you a fairly good image.  Good luck.

I just thought I would also mention, if you are interested in learning photo editing, I do do One on One Photo Editing Sessions, both online and in person, click here for the details

Please remember, if you have enjoyed this post or learned something new, this is how I make my living, so it would be wonderful if you would consider making a small donation, let me continue to help you by helping me.

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Werribee Mansion

Werribee MansionWhen I am teaching one of the things I try to get through to my students is about intention, basically why are you taking the image.

Intention

At school now, when students write something they are asked to answer who is their audience? Who are they writing it for?

I don’t see any reason why the same can’t be asked when you take a photo.  So here are some questions to ask yourself:

  • Why are you taking the image?
  • What is in the scene that makes you want to photograph it?
  • Who is the photo intended for?  It is only for you, your family, your blog, or maybe a photography competition.  It is good to have some idea of who the image is intended for.
  • So you want the image to be a art image?  Are you intending to do lots of post processing.
  • Is the shot just a record of what you saw?

I look at lots of photos on the internet and often I see photos of say a building where someone has just gone straight up to the building held the camera up to it and taken the photo.  There is nothing really wrong with that, if that is your intention, so if you do it, is it your intention, or would you like to do more.

When I see a building that I like and want to take photos.  I try to think of the images that most people would take, and then I think to myself, what else can I do?  How can I try and make my image different to what everyone else takes?  I then have to ask myself what is my intention here, and what sort of image do I want to take.

We all have to do this and if you want to do something different, then start asking yourself, what is your intention?

On a side note, if you have enjoyed this post or learned something new, please remember this is how I make my living, so it would be wonderful if you would consider making a small donation, let me continue to help you by helping me.

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Taking Photos of People

LeanneCole-briony-9116Today I was teaching a photography class and we were looking at Portrait photography.  I try to give my students as much information as I can about photographing people.  I know that portrait photography is really popular and it can be a lot of fun, but it can also be quite scary.

You can have a model standing there in front of you.  You have the camera and you are taking the photos, but do you know what you are doing?  Do you know how to talk to the model or whoever is standing in front of you?

I have taught quite a few portrait classes now and it always amazes me how shy people are when they have someone in front of them to take photos of.

Some suggestions, spend time with the person you are taking photos of first.  Have a coffee or cup of tea and just talk them, build a relationship with them.  Never underestimate how important small talk is.

Remember when you are talking their photo that they need you to guide them.  They can’t see what you are seeing, so they need you to tell them what to do.  Try asking them to move or something. Change directions, or put their hands somewhere else.

Keep up the small talk, the more comfortable they feel with you the better the images that you get will be.

If you have trouble thinking of poses on the spot, then consider doing a list of poses before hand and just go through them.  Many professional photographers use them.

Good luck with taking your portrait photographs.