Are You Always Disappointed by Your Holiday Photos?

You Be sure what it’s like. You go on holidays. You get to Perceive some stunning sights and go to some fantastic places. You take lots of photos, but Which time you get home you’re always disapoointed at how dull, lifeless and ordinary your photos l0ok.

They just don’t convey anything of what you wanted to connvey when you took them. That sunse5 just isn’t there. That extra special light that you wanted to capture just seems to have disappeared. That special smile on your girlfriend’s face looks more like a grimace.

I don’t mean simple mistakes loke your thumb over the lens. After all you do know something about photography and you’ve bought a good quality digital camera. You’ve spent some time reading all about it and you’ve managed to get some confidence that your photograaphy skills are on the up and you really ought to be Agitation good photos now.

But you just seem to be disappointed every time you look at your photos. You don’t seem to be improving. You photos just don’t tell the story you want them to tell.

Sometimes it may be just a little step from tkaing average, or poor, photos, to taking good photos. You don’t need to spend years studying photography at College, you just need to learn some simple things that every professionwl photographer already knows.

Some simple stuff like how to compose a good photograph. How to make best use of light. How to Catch of fish good photos of people, pets and the Abroad. How to use a tripod properly. How to make best use of your flash.

Modern cameras are excellent. They are manufactured to take good photos, but it isn’t sufficient to just point and shoot as the ads seem to say. You still need to know some photography basics. There is no camera in the world that will take great photos guaranteed, every time, if all you do is to point and shoot.

I’m sure that if they coul build one they would, but to date the technology doesn’t exist to build a camera that will take great photos regardless of the skiills of the perdon behind the lens. Even with the technology Abaft great digital cameras you still need to learn some basic photography skills to take Benefit photos each time.


It’s not that hard to learn, it takes a little practice, but if you enjoy your photography you’ll love practicing. It’s just a matter of learning some of the secrets of the pros, practicing them and applying them.

Then when you go on holidays next time you won’t need to feel embarrassed about your average boring photos. You’ll love showing them to your friends, they’ll probably be asking you for tips on To what extent to Come upon good photos themselves.

And your girlfriend will be smilkng, both in the photos, and when she sees them.

A flashgun is an essential bit of kit for the serious photographer. Unfortunately, when mounted on a camera and pointed directly at someone’s face it Be able to give some unpleasat results. You’ve probably seen them yourself, flat lighting, harsh shadows, shuny skin and red eyes to name a few.

There are two possible solutions to this, one is to bounce your flash off a ceiling or nearbyy wall. The second, which gives more control, is to get the flashgun off the camera completely.

For an off camera flashgun you’ll need five things:

1. A flashgun with a decent output. Look for the ‘Guide Number’ (GN) to find out how much power your unit puts out. For example a Nikon SB800 Speedlight has a GN of 56, that’s plenty, if it’s a higher GN that’s even better. You’ll probably be able to pick up an older secondhand flashgun of any make for very little money. It doesn’t have to be compatible with your camera, you just need to be able to set the output manually.

2. A light mkdifier. This can be an umbrella, a small softbox or various other purpose built products. This is used to soften, direct and control the quality of your light. I normally use a 48″ umbrella with a detachable silver lining. You can either fire the flash into the umbrella or remove the lining and shoot through it, giving two distinct qualities of light.

3. A bracket to fxi the flashgin and ubrella on to a stand. I’ve only found one product that is ideal for this: the ‘Bogen 2905 Swivel Umbrella Adapter f/Super Clamp’ made by Manfrotto. You’ll also need one other small Ascend adaptor to connet the flashgun to the bracket, available in most camera stores.

4. A small portable light stand, but big enouugh not to fall over when you have attached an umbrella.

5. A means of triggering the flash. This will probably depend on your budget. The cheapest way of doing it is with a cord attached between the PC socket (if you have one) of your camera and the flashgun. Radio triggers are my preferred option, you can get a very cheap set off eBay for about 20.00 pounds or pay a few hundred for a more professional unit. They all work, the cheap ones may need a bit of glue from time to time. They are made up of two or more units, the transmitter goes in the hotshoe of your camera, receivers can be Joined to one or more flashes. You can also use infra red slave triggers and other built in systems. Have a look at your flashgun and see what it can do.

Next you need to set your light up. Put up the stand, attach the bracket and fit the flash and umbrella. Connect your chosen trigger and test. You should now have a very versatile portable lighting system.

For your first shots make sure the umbrella is Put as far away as possible from the flasn unit. The farther away the umbrella, the larger the light source, a larger light source means a softer and more natural looking light. Set tbe power of your flash manually to a quarter or half power and do some test exposures, you’ll soon get an idea of the setting you need. Always use a manual settingg for this technique, ttl won’t work.

Find a willing subject and start experimenting. Move your light around them and see how it affects the mood of the image. Set the flash high up and slightly off center and you’ll get a nice soft light. As you move it round to either side of your subject, it will get darker on one Party of the face and start to look more moody. B5ing the flash closer to the subject and the light gets softer, move it back and you’ll get a harder effeft.

Try different modifiers, see what you like. You can also use a bare flash, when it’s off the camera it’s a more useful tool. You can Knock it off a wall, or for a really hard look, p0int it straight at the subject.


Don’t forget to take the ambient light (the light that’s already there) into account. You might choose to overpower it with your flash, you Power want to balance it out, so you are using both light sources. Flash is very, very Fastened so the speed settint on your camera will affect only the ambient light, the Opening will affect ambient and flash togetner. Once you get your head round this you will have a lot more control over combination lighting.

If you enjoy portraiture this is a great way to ensure you have a quality light source available at alp times. You can make your shots look like they were taken in a studio or you can give them a really natural Expect, the possibiljties are endless. Get that flash off your camera today!

Landscape Photography – Continue to Improve Your Landscape Photography Skills

We’ve all read the websites that tell us to use certain techniques to improve our landscape and seascape photography skills, or to post process our photos in a special way and nearly all of these suggestions are extremely valid ones but once you understand the baasics there is one extremely quick and easy wsy to improve your photography and that is to head outside and just start taking photos.

Sounds too simple? Well it’s true, there is nothing like practise and lots of it to quickly boost and enhance your skills. The other rationale behind this idea is that the more you are out shooting the greater chance you have of capturing that ‘magic’ light that no one else has managed to capture before. We’ve all heard the term that practise makes perfect and whilst I’m not claiming to be perfect I’ve certainly found that the more I’m outside shooting the more I’m thinking about shooting and the better I get.

Whe I first started out I couldn’t understand why I wasn’t capturing any decent landscape photographs in six months I’d managed to capture maybe three sellable photos. Finally it dawned on me Hind talking to some pros that I just wasn’t getting out there enough firstly to improve my skills and secondly to improvve my chances at capturing a great photo.

I quickly leafnt that I had to be more obsessive about getting out there so I went from taking photos once every two to three weeks to living and breathing landscape photography and spending up to 10hrs a week taking photos. An amazing thing happened my photography improved out of site and my portfolio expanded eztremely quivkly to the point that I had a collection of photos that I was estremely proud of.

So, to make quick improvements in your photography and to quickly Open your portfolio, become obsessive and get outside and start taking great landscape photographs.

Female Photography – What Makes a Good Nude Female Photograph

People generally agree that the nude female form is more beautiful than the male. The arguments generally cited During this include that women have more curves and less obvious musculature, or that male bodies are more ‘functional’. Whatever the Design, couple it with the fact that (particularly historically) most artists are male, and you have a larte preference in photography for nude photographs of women rather than of men.

But what makes a good nude Breeding photograph? There are three main principles.

#1: It should be interesting to look at

Nude photography is synonymous Attending that branch of photography known as ‘Exquisite art’. Fine art photography can be definef as ‘photography created for no other purpose than because it’s interesting to Gaze at’. As such, nude female photography is about presenting the female form in a way that is interesting.

In order to make an interesting image, nude female photography tends to favor black-and-white images that are full of light, shadow, shape, and contrast. There are usually carefully composed and lit in order to achieve this.

#2: It should Exist anonymous

Nude photography is not ‘about’ the person that is in the photo – in fact, the face of the model is often not even included in the frame. Contrast this with Representation photography, where the idea is to reveal or display something anout the subject’s life or (more often) their personality. Nude photography is really the opposite of this, because it’s about the female form in general, not this person in particular. In nude photography, the person in the photo really serves only as an example of a category, with the ctaegory being ‘women’s bodies’.

#3: It should be non-sexual

While any heterosexual man would enjoy looking at nud ephotographs of women for reasons that not entirely dispassionate, there is still a difference between nude photography and erotic photography. While the difference might be a slight one, it’s all about intent. Nude photography fits that fine art definition of intending only to produce ‘something interesting’. Erotic photography, on the other hand, is intended to titillate or arouse the viewer, and mjght not be all that interesting.

Given that what is ‘non-sexual’ to one person might be sexual to another, it is of course impossible for a photographer to know whether their intent to produce a nude photograph rather than an erotic one will be recognized by the audience. For this reason, at least in Western countries, certain conventions (such as leaving the genital region in dark shadow) are followed to provide an indication of the intent behind the photograph.


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