Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Compression Explained

Rule Number One: Be Aware Of Your Background

Compression happens when you frame your subject identically in each shot, but use a zoom lens at different focal lengths.  In the example below, I framed Mr Spooky Pants (more or less) head to toe.  I kept the same exposure - the only thing that change was my distance from my subject.

As you can see, at 18mm, my background shed looks a hundred feet away.  This is because of the wide angle I am shooting at.  As I move back, and zoom in,  the scene compresses, and the shed gets closer and closer.

One other effect to be aware of is the changes in background blur.  Although all four images were shot at f5.6, the 300mm zoom, due to the compression, has blurred the background far more than the f5.6 at 18mm.

Now then - why should this matter?  Well, it depends on your intent.  For portraiture, you would not want a crystal clear background taking away from the subject of your image, (as well as not wanting to be right up in your subjects face) unless your background is more attractive than a shed (sunset, etc.) So in that case, use a medium zoom to help blur the background, but also to not clutter the background as in the 300mm shot.  This is what makes the 50mm 1.8 my favorite lens.

On the other hand, if you are shooting a landscape photo, you would want to shoot with a wide angle, keeping the background as clear as possible, and, of course, more of it.

So, I'll repeat.  Be aware of your background.

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Photographers - Change Your Photos Names

In an age where Google can find just about anything, a simple search for an image named by the camera (ex. IMG_xxxx by Canon) can find your unedited, unwanted pix - the ones you never wanted anybody to see.  Try it with any random numbers.  May be NSFW, tho.
Worse, if your pic is not watermarked, anybody can find and use it for their own purposes.
Just a thought.

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Saturday, December 12, 2015

BOKEH - Blur the Background

Aperture at 3.5, ISO 100, Shutter 250.
Here's the set up and the result:
Simple, but effective.

Sunday, October 25, 2015

From Sunshine to Halloween

Sometimes you are forced to shoot in broad daylight when you want a dark, forbidding shot.  You have to improvise.
Here are a few easy steps to create a faux spooky shot.

                                                                        1. The sign.
2. Alter the sign with local Spanish Moss.
3. Desaturate the color, and darken a bit.
4. Gausian Blur.
5. Blend with Multiply.

Done. Quick and easy.

All photos ©2015Kewphoto

Thursday, February 26, 2015

NO FREEBIES - A Photographers rant by Kewphoto

Every photographer hears it.  Mostly from friends and family.  Could you shoot my kids?  Will you shoot my event? Please come to my wedding - and bring your camera!

Now, we are not talking about cousin Freddie and his new IPhone.  Or Uncle Ted, who just bought an expensive camera and is confident he can use it to give you some pretty good snapshots.

We are talking about professional photographers.  Those of us who do it for a living.

Consider this:
*We have probably went to school of some sort, we read every magazine and book printed on photography, we take seminars and courses to keep up on our education.  All of which costs money.
*Not only did we pay for all our equipment (and in some cases, rented for that special need) including lights, backdrops, meters, lenses, reflectors, cases, the van, and quite a few cameras.
*All this gear needs insured. I, for one, will not take my main cameras out of the house unless I have a contract with a client.  Insurance companies won't pay if I was using it for fun.
*A normal shoots includes travel to the event (say, half hour), set up (hour) shooting (6 hours) clean up (half), return travel (half), then - editing (at least as long as the shoot). A full day taken away from us, a day which could have been spent earning a living and feeding our kids.

So - no, it is NOT a freebie - it costs us quite a bit of time and money.

Imagine your work.  Whatever you do.  Imagine me coming to you and asking if you would put in a full days work - just for me 'cause we are palls - with no pay.

Yeah, thought so.

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Day 10: Shutter Speed Expanded

So. We now know what the aperture does. Set one way, tons of light and shallow Depth Of Field; the other less light and wider DOF.
Now the SHUTTER. Set with the S or TV dial, it is the duration of time that the shutter is open, letting available light into the sensor. Mainly, it controls movement. Here, I have a ceiling fan. The fan is set for it's slowest speed, so I set the shutter for 1/500 of a second.

 Very fast. It captured the blades in mid flight, but still gave a dark image, due to the fact that not a whole heck of light was allowed in Maybe I should have used a slower shutter...

After resetting my shutter to 1/3 of a second, you can see a lot of light came in, but it is overly bright and you can't see the blades at all.
So what can be done?
The S/TV setting allows you to set the shutter speed to whatever you want - within the cameras limitations - to capture movement or stillness.  Just like A/AV setting, YOU set the shutter speed and the camera sets an appropriate aperture base on available light.  But as you can see, the exposures look very different in this example.  Why? Because of the ISO setting.  That will be tomorrows post.