Photo taking tips...

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Re: Photo taking tips...

Post by Heather on Mon Apr 28, 2008 12:20 am

Darn it, I had a whole bunch of stuff about photo editing and I lost it all...I'll just retype it and hope I remember everything I had...grrr...

Just because a photo you've taken is out of focus or too dark/light, etc, etc...doesn't mean it's ruined. You can use photo editing software to help fix it...it's not a miracle worker, but it can help you. I use Corel Paint Shop Pro Photo X2 and it does sooo much...it's similar to Photo Shop but a lot less expensive. This is another one of those things you can play with...you can't break anything or ruin the photo by editing it unless you accidentally save it with bad editing or something like that. I always save photos using the SAVE AS function so I always have the original photo...if you use the SAVE function, you'll lose your original. Here's a photo of Harrison that didn't turn out but I really like how she looks...so I tried to fix it and made it look kinda funky...this is not something I would frame or anything, but I think the second one looks better than the first.

This is the first one...right out of the camera with no editing....


This second one, I edited...I...
1. Cropped the photo
2. Apply Black and White Effect
3. Apply soft focus...make it look like you mean for it to look out of focus. lol
4. Apply illumination effect (sunburst)...you can see the bright light in the upper left corner...it's beaming down to the lower right corner...
5. Add digital noise (the speckles you see)



With digital noise, you can remove it also. Sometimes, especially in low light situations, you can get a lot of digital noise. Some people like it...others don't. There's a function that will remove some or all of it.

Go play with it...like I said, you can't break it...try different things...maybe next I'll show you the clone brush...it's really very cool and can turn a disaster into a work of art. lol.
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Re: Photo taking tips...

Post by BustersMom on Sun Apr 27, 2008 8:49 pm

I have a real nice point and shoot, but this makes me want to go out and buy a DSLR!!

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Re: Photo taking tips...

Post by Ronda on Sun Apr 27, 2008 1:23 pm

Thank you soo much Heather!! You have given some good tips and what we need to look for! I hope to see and hear some success stories here soon! I will be experimenting myself!! How fun! Thanks again Heather!

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Re: Photo taking tips...

Post by Siobhan on Sun Apr 27, 2008 6:24 am

I have just spent a very pleasant hour looking at your albums. I loved all of them. Thank you for doing this and thank you Ronda for asking. I dont read manuals either. I had the taking lots of photos and keep the ones you want, but I never played with the settings so I would end up with loads of the same photos!

Excuse me now, but I need to go play with my camera!
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Photo taking tips...

Post by Heather on Sun Apr 27, 2008 4:48 am

Ronda PM'd me asking me to post some tips here on taking photos. Please, anyone who has experience, add to this all you want Smile

First thing is this...I was taking pictures with a camera for about a year before I realized I was doing it all wrong. I don't read manuals...I just have a hard time with them. Anyway, with most cameras in auto focus mode, you point your camera in the direction you want and snap the photo. What I didn't realize was you have to press the shutter release button (the button that takes the picture) half way down until the camera focuses on your subject...then press it all the way down to take the photo. I have 5 different cameras and each one is a little different when they let you know your subject is in focus. Some beep, some have a little green box on the screen, and another produces a green dot when it's in focus....it just depends on your camera. Several models will all you to pick how you want to be alerted to this.

Second important tip is this....if you've got digital, take lots and lots and lots of photos...you can delete the ones you don't like and keep the ones you do. I've taken 2000 shots at a concert and picked out the best 25 to post on fan sites, to frame, make t-shirts, etc...you get more really good ones if you take lots of pics. Again, take loads of photos. Lots!!

Another tip...try the different camera modes out. Most of the point and shoots have things like portrait mode, macro mode, night scenes, etc etc...try them out...and again, take lots of photos...try them in different situations...take notes if you want...something like 'macro mode is really good for taking pictures of my CAG on her stand'...whatever. Do this BEFORE your big picture taking event...if you're wanting to take pictures at the next family reunion and it's at the park, go to the park the weekend before (if you can) at the same time that you're going to be there for the reunion. Take lots of photos in different camera modes...check them out on the computer at home...take some time to really look at them and see which modes you like...what are you going to use at the reunion?

Ronda asked about how you go about getting your subject in focus but your background blurry. This is called Gaussian Blur. A lot of photo editing software has this but I've never used it...To get this effect with your camera you need to adjust the f-stop. I believe most cameras lowest f-stop is 2.8. That will get you more blur and less focus...for example...with a low number f-stop, if you take a picture of a dog (with a long snout) head on, the nose may be in focus but the eyes won't be...the eyes are too far away from the nose...and you're focused on the nose. To make it so the dog's whole face is in focus, you need to make the f-stop number higher. It's really late so I'm going to stop here...I'll add more later and please feel free to add your experiences too...I am NOT a professional and have not had any training...this info is based on how I know to use my cameras. Like I said before, it's hard for me to read manuals...like a lot of people...so I don't know the technical terms for some stuff...and I tried to make this as un-manual-like as possible...I hope I helped somehow. lol

I will leave you with the link to my album. If you click an album, see a picture you like, click the picture to make it bigger. Then at the bottom, you'll see all the exif info. It will give you the different camera settings...and it will tell you which camera I used too.

My photos:
http://imageevent.com/heatheranddenis


If you're looking to buy a nice point and shoot camera, I would suggest the Panasonic line. They have wonderful cameras with the anti-shake technology built in...they were the first ones to have this and I really like their products. The FZ-50 is nice. I have the FZ-20 and FZ-50. I also have three DSLRs...Nikons D40X and D300...and Konica Minolta Maxxum 7D...the only one I would not recommend is the ladder. Ok, this is really it...I've got to get to bed...happy shooting Smile
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