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Category Archives: Photography

Professional Headshots

Well, how are you going to know all that? The following guidelines may help you to pick an efficient and equally experienced corporate photographer who knows what is what:

– You have the internet and you have your friends. Ask your trusted allies regarding the best professional photographer in town and verify their suggestions with the help of the internet. If the shutterbug is that much popular, he or she will surely have a website to showcase all this work. He doesn’t? Well, then, go for the next name on your list.

– If you have the website, check the portfolio section. Go through the various categories of photos and see if you like them. As you are about to click headshots, make sure you like the headshots taken by that particular photographer. You don’t like them? Then it is not a risk worthy to be taken. Headshots are expensive and you have several options to choose from.

– Now, if you do take a liking for his work, you may go to the next step, that is to contact the person directly and have a chat over the phone. Again, the contact information should be provided on the website itself. If it isn’t, then yes, you know what to do. Go ahead and look for another.

– Suppose you called the photographer, what next? What are you going to talk to him about? Of course you will get directly to the point. Talk about his work. Tell him what you think about it and get straight to the point. Ask him about his charges for first rate quality headshots. Here you should keep one thing in mind. Never bargain with an experienced and reputed photographer because quality matters here. Remember that it is an investment you are making at the start of your career. If it works out well, you will get your money back with interest. But if you bargain or settle for a cheap photographer, you may not get the quality you desire. And casting directors won’t think twice before shifting their focus away from your headshots. So decide accordingly.

On the day of shooting-

Once you have decided on the photographer, arrange a day for shooting the pictures. It should be a mutual decision, according to both of your convenience. Keep yourself ready for the photo shoot. Sleep well, drink lots of water and take care of your skin. Maintain a proper diet before the photo shoot and avoid tanning. On the big day, make sure you look your best in those headshots. After all, you are paying a great deal of money for them. Relax and listen to the what the shutterbug has to say. You will look best if you do not let stress and anxiety cloud your mind.

Panorama Stitching

In the olden days, it was difficult to put a panoramic image together as it was done in the dark room stitching images together by overlapping exposures on he finished photo paper. But now, we can buy cameras that are specifically meant for Panorama Images. As in, manufacture of these cameras is meant to shoot images in a row from left to right and from bottom to the top. Although a computer does most of the stitching, it is important for a photographer to shoot images in perfect overlap and only then can a computer recognize the edges perfectly and therefore will stitch perfectly. Overlapping is the most important aspect of a panorama image, a small slip can ruin the entire shot.

Regardless of the intricacies in the image stitching technique, it is most important to shoot images in perfect end-to-end way. Keeping your camera on a level is very important when shooting panorama images as it is not of much importance while shooting fewer images but while shooting panoramic images with more than 50 images it is of utmost importance to keep the camera level.

Next up, please note that any kind of movements in the plain view can kill panorama shots. For example, a bird flying through the canyon. While shooting a panoramic image of the canyon the bird might seem in one image and might not exist in the overlapping image. This kind of happenings cannot be good for the resulting image. All these are steps taken to shoot a proper panoramic image. The stitching of these images to bring the panorama image together is the most difficult part of it all. Graphic experts with computer software work on images shot sequentially and stitch them together. Numerous firms across the globe offer Panorama Stitching Services, these firms hire professional editors to get the job done. Real Estate owners, realtors, wildlife photographers outsource images to these freelancing firms who edit images and stitch them based on the client’s requirements.

Cycling Lends

What they did help provide however was a fantastic and totally unexpected atmosphere. With the arrival of a the long train of support vehicles, police and in particular the French gendarmes (yes the French police with their comedic siren exploited brilliantly in the Pink Panther films), then I begin to notice a faint tingling on the back of my neck. The helicopters overhead then raise the anticipation to fever pitch and I begin to focus on a stretch of road in the distance. No riders yet. But the helicopters remain. My dog Jip stops fidgeting and barking and pricks his ears up attentively. Someone further along calls out, “They’re here!”

That magical sunny day (they forecast rain you know) will live with me I hope, always. Now, I intend to capture ordinary people’s passion for cycling, and this is how I and other would be snappers might go about it.

Loaded with a camera and lens capable of taking action and sports shots (I use a Canon 50mm f1/8 which can be purchased for between £60-70), I locate myself at points along various cycling routes – road or off-road. Organised events will also provide opportunities. One eye should be on the weather beforehand, as a torrential downpour could render all your preparation as useless.

Care will be taken not to take photos of younger cyclists unless parental consent is given. Moreover, care will also be taken not to take a photo if it might hinder the cyclist’s concentration, thus causing an accident (such as on busy roads).

The best photos will probably be provided by muddy mountain bikers hurtling over a jump but brightly garbed road cyclists riding along in the majestic light provided by a summer’s evening glow will take some beating aesthetically.

Information of ISO Sensitivity

The exposure is controlled by 3 (three) adjustments we make in the camera: shutter speed, aperture and sensitivity. Shutter speed and aperture ultimately control how much light comes into the camera (we can compare this to a water tap – how much you open the valve and for how long will dictate the amount of water that will flow)… and how much light is needed for a certain exposure is determined by the sensitivity of the medium used (today it has been expressed as ISO numbers – and as ASA not so long ago).

In the digital cameras world today, we can find ISO ranges from as low as 50 up to 204,800, being the normal range placed somewhere between 200 and 1600. These numbers have some qualities associated with them: it sets the amount of light needed for a good exposure, and the lower the number, the more light is required, and as a consequence for a fixed aperture, a slow shutter speed will have to be used; and will influence the amount of noise in the image.

So, if you have lots of light (or have the camera mounted on a tripod), the lower the numbers you can set, and on the other hand, when you do not have lots of it or you need a faster shutter speed (for action and sports shots, for example), you will need to raise the ISO (and this is what the AUTOISO settings in your camera do: adjusts the ISO settings so you end up with the correct camera measured exposure for a given situation. You normally set the minimum and maximum range you want the camera to automatically adjust the ISO based on your acceptable quality and speed requirements).

It is worth knowing that each time you double the ISO (for example, from 100 to 200 or from 400 to 800), half of the light is needed for the same exposure, and vice-versa.

As we mentioned above, noise levels will also be influenced by the ISO settings, and the higher the number is, the more noise and visible grain an image will have. We normallywant the images to have the least amount of noise as possible.

Today, most digital cameras can make good quality images at ISOs up to 800 or 1600 and above, but several aspects affect this, from the sensor type a camera uses (for example, the size of the pixels used on the camera’s sensor, which are larger in SLRs compared to the compact ones. Larger pixels result in less noise and SLRs have larger sensors with larger pixels) to the amount and type of noise reduction algorithms and systems used in the cameras.

Panorama Stitching Services

A panoramic view empowers buyers to basically rotate and check the property providing a real life-like experience without having to visit the house. Nowadays people hardly go out anymore. Numerous e-commerce sites have enabled them to buy or do their shopping sitting at home. E-commerce sites have gone insane with the use panoramic images to display a 360- degree view of their products to convince the customers. With Panoramic images, e-commerce websites have been able to find customers on a large-scale and also have overcome the need to convince people with just one or 2 shots of the product.

Work done while performing the stitching process,

  • Modifying and sewing the straight and horizontally images as required
  • Adjusting of stages and shapes to create the picture look even and stylish
  • Addition of needed detail to the pictures
  • Aligning, placement and covering components normally and correctly
  • Removal of repetitive components and objects
  • Rotating and cropping
  • Image filtering
  • Color making and modification

The art of stitching images is a task that cannot be handled by everyone, only professional editors with the knowledge of software that handle images can do the task accurately. The need to incorporate new trends and technologies in the project can make images more appealing and natural. Freelancing firms across the world offer Image Stitching services at affordable prices. Most of the photo editors use Photoshop to do most of the editing and the stitching work. Photoshop provides tools that can help editors manipulate with colors, brightness, and other areas of the images that need correction.

Right Photography Class

Important Factors to Consider in Choosing a Photography School

Below are some tips if you are planning to enroll in classes for photographers:

Identify your needs. Have a fair idea of the actual things that you want to learn from your classes before beginning your search. Are you a beginner who simply wants to learn, understand and master the basics? Would you like to learn more advanced concepts like model posing and multiple exposures?

Know your schedule. How much time can you allocate for your lesson? You would want to opt for a school that can accommodate your busy schedule if you currently have a day job.

Begin your search. The best place to go first is online. You can also solicit suggestions from your friends or relatives. You may be able to find a few photography schools operating near where you live or work. If there is a photography club in your area, enquire whether they offer classes or not. Create a shortlist of potential schools to enroll in.

Review the courses. Go to the shortlist of potential schools you have created and check the courses offered. Does the syllabus and the goals you have set match? More often, classes are broken down into these three categories: beginner, intermediate and advanced. Opt for the lower level if you are unsure which level would fit you best. This will allow you to master the basics first before advancing to the higher level.

Check the work and credentials of the instructor. Before you enter a photography class in that school, talk to former students and get their reviews of the instructors. Photography instructors should not only produce outstanding work. Do remember that they should also be good communicators because that is where good relationship and good learning starts.

Taking Great Photos for Children

Know your equipment

Children move fast and have short attention spans. If you want to catch that great photo it is important that you are familiar with the equipment that you are using and know the best settings to get the type of images you want. This means practising with your camera, reading the manual and getting to grips with the technicalities. Photography is like anything else. If you want to be good at it you have to do the work. I like to shoot on aperture priority and set the autofocus to track my subjects, but there are no hard rules. Experiment and find out what works for you.

Persistance

Don’t be disheartened if you don’t get a great shot in the first five minutes. Sometimes you have to take a lot of bad shots to get that one good shot. Often the main difference between an amateur and a professional is that the amateur gives up before the professional would. Remember your worst photo is always the one you didn’t take. Being a great kids photographer is all about persistence.

Shoot from Their Level

Always try to crouch down when you are photographing children. Not only does it make for better a better composition, it helps connect with them on their level. Try to talk to them and interact with what’s going on so the situation seems more normal, don’t hide behind your camera and silently take photos – that will unsettle them.

Pick a Great Location

Going to the beach or out into the country will help you take great photos. Keep your children occupied and make the day an adventure and great pictures will jump out in front of you. Better locations give you a great start in producing great images and keep your children interested.

Exposure Value System

Similarly, shutter speed steps are also either half or twice as fast as its neighbour (so 1/30th – for example – is twice as long as 1/60th, and 1/60th is half as long as 1/30th).

Thusly, a number of different combinations of aperture size and shutter speed all produce the same degree of exposure. For example, f/5.6 at 1/60th provides the same level of light exposure as f/8 at 1/30th (where the amount of light halves, and the duration of exposure doubles).

Of course, there are even more permutations; f/8 at 1/30th is also the same as f/11 at 1/15th (half the light for twice as long), or f/4 at 1/125th (four times the light for a quarter of the time), and f/2.8 at 1/250th (eight times the light for an eighth of the time) etc.

A one step change, to either setting, is known as a “one stop” change.

To simplify the process of setting alternative aperture and shutter speed combinations, a German camera shutter manufacturer – called Friedrich Deckel – first developed the Exposure Value (EV) concept in the 1950s. The likely impetus for this was the rise in popularity of colour film, which required greater exposure accuracy than black and white film photography (modern 35mm colour film started to become available in the mid 1930s).

In 1954, numerous camera (and shutter) manufacturers adopted Deckel’s Exposure Value Scale (EVS); including Hasselblad, Kodak, Konica, Olympus, Ricoh, Seikosha and Voigtländer, to name but a few.

They introduced lenses with coupled shutters and, and EV scales, such that, after setting the exposure value, adjusting either the shutter speed or aperture made a corresponding adjustment in the other to maintain a constant exposure.

When camera models with built-in light meters started to emerge, some also metered against an EV scale (as opposed to an aperture or shutter speed scale), and correct exposure was accomplished by transferring the meter’s EV reading to the lens, though adjustment of lens apertures and/or shutter speed settings.

The Exposure Value (EV) is therefore a numerical scale that represents a combination of a camera’s shutter speeds and f-numbers, such that all combinations yield that the same exposure have the same EV value.

More than that, Exposure Value scale steps also align with intervals on the photographic exposure scale. In other words, an increment of one step on the EV scale represents a one step (often referred to as a stop) increase in exposure, and conversely a one step decrease corresponds to a one step reduction in exposure. For this reason, some cameras had, and still have, exposure compensation features that are graded as EV steps (e.g. +/- 2 EV).

For example, if EV 9 corresponds to f/4 and 1/30th of a second, EV 8 is f/4 at 1/15th of a second, and EV 10 is f/4 at 1/60th of a second (plus any other combination of settings that produce the EV scale value).

The EV scale starts at 0, which represents a 1 second exposure at f/1.0. Lenses with an aperture that big are rare, but it’s the same as a 2 second exposure at f/1.4, or a 4 second exposure at f/2, etc.

EV 15 equates to full sunlight with distinct shadows, while EV -4 would be a scene lit by a full moon. An EV is therefore a convenient “system” for describing the quality of light.

The EV scale can thus be used as a rough guide to exposure setting in the absence of a light meter. So EV 14 is hazy sunlight with soft shadows, EV 13 is cloudy bright with no shadows, 12 is overcast, and so on (for a 100 ISO film).

Make Colorful Fleece Photo Blankets

To start putting your photo blanket, you need to determine which side of the fabric to use for the outside of your throw. When I made the blanket, it had a small white edge on the wrong side, where the fabric was bordered. So you can lay the print fabric face down on a flat surface. The wrong side of the fabric will be face up. You can also lay your solid fabric wrong side down, putting the wrong sides of the fabric together, so that the right side out will be face upward. You can put the solid fleece on the top of the quilt as this is much easier to see what you are doing.

Thus, you need to match the edges very carefully. Otherwise, it might look bad from both the sides. If they are not properly matched, you need to trim a side or adjust it for the perfect match. With the help of long straight pins you can match the ends and side together properly. Although, you can add extra pins that make your photo blankets straight and they keep the fabric intact while you work.

Apart from that, you can use a good pair of scissors. One is required for the smooth cutting. The first cut you will make is at your corner. So you can remove a square at the corners, about two inches by two inches deep. You can remove the excessive fabric which is not required. You can make two inches cuts down the side of the fabric. You can start in one corner and cut with a perfect way around the quilt. The whole procedure is depending on the experience that you have earned in your previous days. Based on your experiences and expertise, you may decide to measure your fabric before making your cuts. In this case, you can use a fabric pencil to pre-mark your borders. It is more helpful.

Perfecting the stitch:

Nevertheless, to start the stitch procedure, you can take the solid color strip of materials and wrap it around the print of material. Make sure always use the solid strip to wrap around the other to keep your stitch looking consistent and neat. Before you starting the stitches, there are a couple of challenges that you have to be aware of in order to make the perfect stitches. Sometimes, it can be difficult to get the needle to come out on the inside part of the loop. The best way to make this process easier is to make a larger loop than you would like. You can make a straight line for the bottom part of the stitch and mark the portion where you will start and finish every stitch.

Furthermore, now that you have completed your fleece blanket, you may want to wrap it and give it personalized gift item. However, I personally prefer to put the photo blankets in a gift bag rather than a gift box. The bag maintains their shape properly. At the same time the recipient would happy to receive this type of gift item on special occasions.

Photo Opportunity

Everybody watched as time ticked by. Three minutes later the photographer was yet to take a picture. The woman shuffled her high heels back and forth, patted her scarf at the back, rebalanced the wad of wrapper hung around her right shoulder and returned a bland look at the general audience.

Soon thereafter the woman began to explore reasons for the delay. If the photographer weren’t too tall, and too huge, and old, he would have taken a few pictures by now.

Getting ready for a photograph and not immediately proceeding was what annoyed her about taking pictures at a public event. Younger people can tolerate such an ordeal, but not her, not when in nine months she would become a grandmother.

In a sudden disdain for the photographer, the woman’s gaze swung down, exposing the whites of her eyes. Displeasure conveyed through two scorching eyes is more direct and more stinging than that conveyed through mere spoken words, no matter how acidic.

The offending camera, a Sony, was skewed to the left where it had hooked with the flashlight appendage. The photographer pulled the flashlight out and scowled at it close up, the way African fathers glare at naughty boys, before reattaching it to the side of the camera.

He reassured himself that everything was fine. Just because he hadn’t taken a picture yet didn’t mean he was inactive. Credit, he knew, only goes to those who show results, never to those who show activity. However, he had expected better treatment from the woman, who – had he married early – was young enough to be his daughter.

Another idea flew into the woman’s head. If the old man, like many men at this age, was short-sighted and unable to read her eyes, she might at some point scream at him.

But screaming, she decided, would not only mess up her perfect picture body but might further irritate the old man. An action once taken can produce a myriad of unpredictable reactions. The photographer might feel threatened and resort to taking her picture when she was looking at her worst. Preserving her beauty by staying still trumped any delay caused by his inefficiency.

Over his camera, the photographer gazed at the woman. She was a statue of bright color in a garden full of colors. Her pink scarf tied around her head still held up high. The sheet of folded blue wrapper hung over her right shoulder draped down to her hip. But her perfect picture face had begun to melt a little at the edges.

Then he moved his finger over the snap button, and the woman knew something was about to happen. ‘At last,’ she sighed. The man had begun to get control of the situation. The flashlight appendage was behaving, and the camera apparatus felt sturdier in his grip.