Silhouette Photo Tips and Techniques

Silhouette Photo Tips and TechniquesMany photographers probably have stared at a silhouette image and pondered to themselves how exactly it had been taken and composed. Silhouette images could contain a couple looking at a sunset, a cityscape with the sun shining through buildings, or just a normal horizon. In order to get an effective silhouette image, a photographer must be in the right place at the right time and have the right exposure settings.

-Silhouette Definition

In the area of photography, a silhouette is defined as an outline that appears dark against a light background. More specifically, it is where your subject appears as a plain black shape against a brighter background. It is an artistic photography expression that many photographers like to refine and perfect in their images. This effect can be achieved with any bright light source with the sun being the most common. In a sunset silhouette photo, the sunlight in the background is exposed correctly forcing everything else in the photo to be underexposed causing the effect.

-Silhouette Techniques

When you are preparing to take a silhouette image, there are many things

Tips for Getting Sharp Pictures Without a Tripod

Tips for Getting Sharp Pictures Without a TripodUse a tripod if you can

A tripod is an indispensable piece of equipment. However, they are often large, heavy and cumbersome. In many instances you simply won’t be able to use a tripod to get the picture you need. But, without one, your images will be inferior won’t they? Perhaps, but if you follow the following guidelines, then you’ll be in a better position to get the most out of your camera.

Use a fast shutter speed

Use the fastest shutter speed that you can. The longest shutter speed that will guarantee pin sharp images is 1/60. Some people will claim that they can get sharp images at 1/30 or even 1/15 – don’t listen to them.

Consider your lens

The focal length of your lens is important – the longer the focal length, the faster the shutter speed needs to be to ensure a steady hand. A good rule of thumb is to choose a minimum shutter speed which is equivalent to 1/focal length. So a 100mm lens needs a shutter speed of 1/100 whereas a

Taking Pictures in Bad Weather

Taking Pictures in Bad WeatherIt’s always a struggle going out in bad weather. Cold days and nights, rain, fog and that welcoming warm fire at home. But, if you can overcome the temptation to stay at home then you could get some great images.

Rain is wet, but it brings forth opportunities for great photos. Reflections, highlights and the beautiful glistening of water on plants. Puddles, bloated rivers and people in raincoats and holding umbrellas. Don’t forget the chances of seeing dramatic skies and cloud formations and wait for the sun to burst through an overcast sky spreading light onto the wet world below.

There are ways to keep your equipment dry – but staying in shouldn’t be one of them! Umbrellas are effective but difficult to hold. However, if you have a rucksack then you can slide the handle in-between the rucksack and your back. You might feel silly but it will enable you to use both hands to get some great pictures. Even a plastic bag is effective and if you want to spend a fortune, you can get customised waterproof covers for your model of

Wildlife Scouting Cameras

For years I wondered how big the bucks were that were roaming our property in the dark of night. After all, I knew that monster bucks had to be eluding me during the daylight hours only to roam the woods at night. In an attempt to reveal these mysterious nocturnal monsters I purchased a scouting camera in 1996.

After a couple of years of using the camera I was very disappointed. The camera worked fine and we had many pictures of deer, but they were the same does and spike bucks that I was seeing during the day. Something must be wrong; I knew that there had to be big bucks stalking the hillsides at night. After all, everyone always said “you know there is a big one in there somewhere”.

After many rolls of film and an equal number of anxious trips to retrieve developed pictures, I came to realize that there simply were not any mystical trophy bucks roaming our property.

This scouting camera was the proof that I needed to convince myself that the problem was not nocturnal deer but it was actually a deer management problem.

In the eight years

Improving Our Landscape Images

All the world’s cameras, films and other photographic equipment are no more than tools for making landscape pictures. Cameras don’t think for themselves. Whether we use digital or film camera, the same photographic principles apply.

We don’t have to stick to many rules to produce great landscape images, but knowing what they are will make your pictures more successful. There are two salient points in landscape photography: how to compose your image, and how to use available natural light in any given situation.

Lets start off with light: There are three basic qualities of light: intensity, direction and colour.

Intensity: refers to the strength of light. If the sun is high in the sky, light can be harsh and too strong. Cloudy days bring soft and defused light.

Direction: this refers to light placement. There are three categories of light placement: front, back and side-lighting. Side lighting produces more texture between light and shade.

Colour: the colour of sunlight varies depending upon conditions and time of day. If the sun shines at the beginning or the end of the day, the colour of the light will be much warmer, and will lead to

Under Water Digital Camera

When you are in the middle of a dive, you don’t get a second chance to photograph the rare stingray, a seal that is cavorting with its mate or some exquisite rainbow colored fish that are hovering in the trail of air bubbles from you mask. An underwater digital camera allows you to immediately see what you have just captured.

It is the best way to capture underwater scenery, corals, fish schools, and anything that catches your eye that you wish to preserve. With an underwater digital camera you can share that special moment forever. You can shoot until you run out of air instead of film. Printing or publishing the pictures on the Internet is very simple, as you need to just connect the camera to a computer and transfer the image files.

Digital underwater cameras allow you to compose the image on the LCD monitor and with a better depth technology, focusing is very easy. Different varieties are available to suit every need. The depth at which the cameras can be used is important. Economical ones can be used up to 5 meters while professional ones can be used at depths of 150 meters

Ultra Compact Digital Cameras

The ultra compact digital camera is a favorite for the photographer on the go. These cameras fit conveniently in a pocket or purse. While they are small in size, they offer great performance. Some are equipped with incredible zoom packed into a tiny case. Advanced technology makes for extraordinary response, too.

The number of megapixels will vary with the different brands of ultra compact digital cameras. You will find cameras from three megapixels to more than eight megapixels. You can expect great pictures from these easy-to-carry cameras. Some have only digital zoom while others offer both optical and digital zoom, giving unbelievable clarity and picture quality.

Be sure to check out the expected battery life. The number of pictures you can take will depend on the type of exposure. Many ultra compact models include the option of movie mode with sound. If you anticipate using your camera for capturing action, you should plan on having an extra battery available.

Many features common on full-size digital cameras are not available in the ultra compact models; therefore, it is necessary to know what kind of performance you need before you make a purchase. At, you can

Importance of Commercial Photo Printing

I’m guessing that if you’ve ever wanted to turn your digital photos into print form, at some point in your life, you’ve probably experimented with using a desk printer in order to accomplish this task. And if you continued this experiment over and over again, you probably spent a small fortune on ink cartridges and photo paper all for the sake of producing low quality pictures. Eventually, after learning from your mistakes, you probably wised up and took you business to an experienced photo printing company. But why do people like you use photo printing services and how do they get digital pictures to turn out so well in print form? Their secret is that they have a commercial photo printing machine.

Printers that are made for the home use market are generally not constructed to properly handle the duties of printing color pictures. Those that have decent color printing capabilities still lag far behind those of commercial photo printers. The commercial photo printing machines produce pictures that are richer in color and generally last longer without fading than printers commonly used in homes. However, a high price is paid for the advantages that commercial photo printers

Picture This Helpful Photography Hints

Have you ever gotten back developed photos from the drugstore or film company only to discover that several shots turned out poorly-or not at all? Most camera buffs have experienced this type of disappointment frequently. Over time, though, picture takers become familiar with helpful techniques that can make photos come out much better than the earlier snapshots. Here are a few helpful hints you may want to try:

1. Get to know your camera. Read the instruction guide carefully, and contact the manufacturer with any questions you might have. Practice taking shots at varying angles and distances until you figure out how to get the best results. Work with the lighting options, including flash, for balance of perspective and shading. Keep fresh batteries and check them often to make sure they don’t give up just when you’re ready for that all-time spectacular, spontaneous shot of a twelve-point buck jumping over your parked truck.

2. Size up your subjects. Learn how to place people and objects in your viewfinder, as well as how to center landscapes. A basic book on photography or even a few suggestions in your camera kit can teach you how to juxtapose people

Get To Know Your Camera More Than Just Megapixels

Today, while you go shopping for ‘feature-rich’ digital cameras physically or on the Internet, often you will find manufacturers running out of their ways, telling “this camera takes great pictures.” And which snap taker of our times will fail to equate ‘great pictures’ with great resolutions? Well, with today’s 3, 4 or 5 megapixel digital cameras offering the flexibility of digital zooms, storing high-resolution images on their memory cards and an LCD panel that shows 100% of the subject, you will get digital images of superb quality; whether you want to print posters or put your images online.

With manufacturers recognizing a market for simple, sleek and sophisticated cameras in all pixel categories, today you can find basic point-and-shoot digicams, with resolutions typically ranging from one-megapixel at the low end to six-megapixels in professional-grade equipment. And here, the bottomline is, the more pixels a camera has, the sharper the images it produces.

With today’s manufacturers realizing that the buyers actually intend to match their purchases with the specific needs of the camera at a price that best suits them, they have also come up with many midrange models that feature lots of adjustable focus, exposure settings

Get the Photos You Want Learn to Crop

The photo from a 3.2 mega pixel camera can print a fair quality 8 x 10 print at 200 dpi. So, why do people buy 4, 5, or even 6 mega pixel cameras?

Well, maybe they want 11 x 14 prints, which at 200 dpi require a 6 mega pixel camera.

However, more importantly, a higher mega pixel camera lets you “crop” your photo. That is where you cut away part of the photo, not only giving you the photo you want, but also making the photo smaller in pixels. As long as you start with more pixels, it is easier to cut stuff out and still keep enough pixels to make it good for prints.

Speaking of cropping, look at the ratios of common print sizes.

a 4 x 6 has a 1.50 ratio

a 5 x 7 has a 1.40 ratio

an 8 x 10 has a 1.25 ratio

What about cameras?

Most newer point-and-shoot digitals have a ratio of 1.33 !!!

What do the photo finishers do when you send them a 1.33 and ask them to print a 1.50? They crop the picture where they

The Camera and the Influence of Digital Technology

In the study of the camera, digital technology influence comes from a variety of different sources to give rise to modern digital photographic capabilities. Some of these technologies are then advanced in special niches to create new advances in science. One of the best examples of this exchange of digital technology is the CCD or Charge-coupled device. This is the digital technology breakthrough that made the digital camera possible.

When light strikes the CCD surface, it frees electrons to move around and those electrons accumulate in capacitors. Those electrons are “counted” at regular intervals by a circuit which dumps the electrons from each point on the CCD surface. When all of these measurements are combined, a picture can be instantly reproduced as a “virtual mosaic” of the individual point measurements. This is the picture we see. The more points of measurement found on the CCD, the higher the “resolution” of the resulting picture.

When building a highly specialized camera, digital technology such as this opens new doors which are not possible with film based technology.

In dentistry, an X-ray machine can be converted to a digital camera with a CCD which is sensitive to the

Tips for Photographing Animals

You can’t pose undomesticated animals per say, but you can capture the moment―even if it looks like you posed them.
Much of the same principles apply towards photographing animals as it does towards humans. Keep these basic principles in mind as you photograph animals:

1) Eye contact is important, but not always necessary. In some instances, a pose with eye contact from an animal works. In my opinion, this type of pose is equivalent to a traditional, formal portraiture. When the pose works, the body position is natural and shows the full-body.

2) The surrounding setting is important too. If there are a couple of background textures and tones which complement the animal and setting, this would be perfect! In this way, the animal and setting (the background) contain visual unity.

3) The camera’s flash fills in shadows and enhances the appearance of humans, as well as animals. Take a fill flash photograph and look for the shadows on and around the animal’s body. Now, take another photograph without the flash. Without the flash, part of the animal’s face is darkened and the shadows are not as pleasing to the eye. The shadows tell us

Curious About Online Photo Development

So you want to clear your hard drive of all those images captured by the digital camera but at the same time save a piece of all those cherished moments. Well, one option is to print the photos out on a desktop printer, which unfortunately uses a lot of ink and doesn’t always create the best picture. Another is to save them all in e-mails, and in turn, clutter your mailbox leaving virtually no space for anything else. So the sensible alternative: online digital photo printing.

Even for a computer novice, online photo development is simple. First, find a website that does online printing and access their uploading page. First-time users of a website will probably have to download some software, which is a fairly quick process. After downloading the software, the uploading of the pictures can begin. Simply navigate the desired digital pictures into the upload box and send them. When the upload is complete, proceed to the ordering page, which allows a user to select options like the size and amount of pictures that will be ordered. Enter billing and shipping information and you’re ready to receive some pictures! While some websites differ slightly in

Get and Use a Tripod

Why would you ever want a tripod? They are heavy, expensive and cumbersome to carry aren’t they?

Yes. But if you want great images then investing in one will reap dividends.

Consider the following image opportunities:

a night time shot of the moon

a beautiful church in the evening

a stunning landscape

making running water appear fluid

You won’t get very far without a tripod with any of these shots. You will have an image, but it will be inferior to what you could have produced.

A tripod holds your camera steady and allows you to do the following

– take long exposures without camera shake

– use maximum depth of field (smallest aperture) for landscapes

– allow movement in your shots whilst keeping the background steady

Imagine you have a wonderful building in your local town. In the evening it is beautifully lit and there are trees and bushes surrounding it giving you a perfect opportunity for a gorgeous shot when there is still a bit of light in the sky. Even at full aperture you are thinking of perhaps half

Your Images are at Risk

You have spent lots of money and time on getting a good camera and taking lots of pictures. Now they are safely loaded onto your computer they need no further attention, right?


Your memories are precious. They are part of you and your world. They are for sharing and reminiscing over. They capture moments in time and can never be replaced. They catalogue what makes you tick and how you relate to others. For you, they have irreplaceable sentimental value.

For some, your images may be commercially valuable. Photos are always required by stock photo agencies and you may have invested a lot of time and effort into getting that important picture which could earn you a small fortune.

But, your images are still in danger and you need to act NOW to protect them. Thousands of people lose their memories every day, despite how well they look after them. Make sure it isn’t you.

How are images lost?

Accidental deletion: it is so easy to press the “delete” key when you wanted to press the “open” key

Computer crashes: your computer WILL crash. It doesn’t matter if it has

Low Light and Night Photography

As the light fades, do thoughts of photography wane also? If that’s the way you think then read on as we will be showing you that low light photography is awash with opportunities!

Images, whether from film or digital cameras, need one ingredient… light. How then can photographers get good images in low light conditions? Using flash would be one way. But even the most dimly lit scene has some light – and that means the potential for a great photo!

What equipment will I need?

Well, you will need a camera as well as charged batteries, that’s for sure. Also, a tripod is invaluable for exposures lasting greater than 1/30th second (1/60th in some cases). A torch, a decent lens and think about a remote shutter release – using long shutter speeds means the potential for camera shake and blurred images is even greater than usual (the alternative is to use a self timing mechanism to trip the shutter).

What about white balance?

Night time often means scenes lit with artificial light. This will inevitably give a colour cast to your shots although this can be pleasing sometimes. There

Reasons to Own and Use a Lens Cap

Have you ever wondered what use is a lens cap? It is often made of plastic, it is fiddly to use and often gets lost. Yet the humble cap should be seen as an essential part of your armamentarium.

Here’s 10 reasons why:

1. It protects your lens from scratches – remember the golden rule, if anything can scratch your lens it will – and lenses cost a lot of money

2. It protects your lens from accidental knocks – a camera round the neck is always prone to the odd knock or two (or three)

3. It protects your lens from dirt – your lens is not excluded from the effects of daily muck and grime – lenses have to be exposed to get proper use

4. It protects your lens from sticky fingers – yours, children’s and anyone else that wants to admire your equipment – people love to touch other people’s lenses

5. It protects your lens from water – rain water, splashes (all water has an affinity for camera lenses, it’s a known fact)

6. It is cheap – great value for money! (people can but these

Get the Perfect Exposure

Did you ever get back a fresh batch of film, only to be disappointed in finding out that you got back wash-out boring images.

The problem is that you didn’t expose your film properly.

Whether we use a digital or film camera, we need to be able to calculate exposure properly. But first, we need to understand how the aperture and the shutter work together. We also need to know how film handles light, and the relationship between film light sensitivity and f/stops.

Lets take a quick look at the main elements.

Aperture and f/stops: the aperture is an opening in the centre of the lens through which light passes. The amount of light which passes through an aperture is indicated by f/stops. The lower the f/stop the more light that passes through the aperture. Opening up one full f/stop doubles the amount of light entering the camera. F/4 admits twice the light of f5.6.

Shutter: the shutter is a mechanical device that controls the length of time that light is allowed to act on the film. Each time you open the shutter by one, we double the light, when we close down

The Wonders Of Winter

You may travel the world in search of the most glamorous locations, but sometimes there’s no place like home.

Its winter time again, and while some folks are ready to reside indoors, its time for all landscape photographers to gather their winter gear and start the quest for some great seasonal images.

For many of us, the greatest joy in photography is to travel to far-away lands, seeking idyllic locations, that we can only dream about, and then do our very best to capture them. But do we need to travel to capture perfect sights? All around us are places of beauty waiting to be captured and we pass them every day.

We don’t need to go to great expense or travel thousands of miles; dramatic places are found in every corner of every land. But then I do have one of the world’s best locations on my doorstep: the west coast of Ireland.

While the wet weather can keep me indoors for weeks on end, the winter months bring harsh, but inspiring light, where a rugged Irish Landscape thrives.

No more so than a scenic National Park, five miles outside Killarney town,