Posted on April 10th, 2015
Humans take a lot of pictures. Facebook recently published a white paper revealing that its 1.15 billion users have uploaded over 250 billion pictures, and are uploading some 350 million new pictures each and every day. That’s an average of about 217 photos per user. Even more shocking is the fact that 10% of the photos ever taken were shot in the last 12 months.
These statistics beg the question, though, are we shooting anything worth looking at? Rather than wasting still digital cameras memory on the same old selfies and the same old lunches, amateurs should go out of their comfort zones and get practice shooting a myriad of different things. Practice is, after all, the only way to get better.
Here are just a couple good places novices can bring their still digital cameras to to get more practice, and even better shots.
The Dog Park
Who doesn’t love doggies other than movie villains? Full of people bonding with their best friends, dog parks are the perfect places to bring still digital cameras to. Not only because of all the different fun-loving animals, but also for the characters who show up there, too. And you can probably get some great action shots of dogs playing, and maybe even meet some new people!
Street art makes for excellent subjects for a couple reasons. First of all, it’s interesting. There’s tons of vibrant colors, distinctive styles, and detailed characters. Second of all, it’s temporary. Street art is often painted or wallpapered over by the city, building owners, and even other graffiti artists. Shooting the street art is a way to preserve it and share it with others. Third, and perhaps most important, is their locations. Graffiti is typically found in cities, amidst a geometric jungle, the perfect place for amateurs to practice their composition skills. They can work on using the buildings’ natural lines to create movement in their images, capturing much more dynamic shots with their still digital cameras.
The world is a big, beautiful place full of interesting characters and striking locales. Instead of shooting the same-old-same-old subjects, amateur photographers would be wise to take their still digital cameras out there and start shooting things outside of their comfort zones. The only way to get better at photography is practice, after all, even if they did buy the latest, greatest gear online digital camera stores have to offer.
If you know of any awesome places to take still digital cameras to, feel free to share in the comments.
Posted on March 3rd, 2015
Before you can take a great photo, you need to understand what makes a picture great. Here are three of the most essential elements of photography, and how you can work them to make your pictures truly outstanding.
First of all, you need to shoot in a well lit space. If you’re shooing indoors, you may want to invest in some studios lights. However, if you can’t afford what the photo stores are selling, then you can use a large sheet of paper or card stock to even out harsh contracts, since they’ll reflect the incoming light onto the unlit side of your subject, ensuring they’re evenly lit. If you’re shooing outdoors, then make sure your digital camera shoots them with the sun facing them. If it’s at their backs, the shadows will completely obscure your subject.
It’s also important to note that while many still digital cameras come with a flash built right in, it’s best to avoid using them, even if you have one of the best small digital cameras out there. Many manufacturers put the flash too close to their still digital cameras’ lenses, which causes photos to come out overexposed. It’s best to try to light the area yourself, without a flash.
At the heart of every photograph is its composition; the position of the different elements in the frame. It’s how you arrange your subject with surrounding objects in the fore, mid, and background. Amateur photographers can compose better photographs by putting their subjects just-center of their still digital cameras’ frames, by placing the horizon one-third or two-thirds up in the pictures, and by using the area’s natural lines to create movement towards the subjects.
Though it’s one of the most fundamental elements any photographer should understand, aperture can also be one of the most tricky. Most entry-level, point and shoot, still digital cameras don’t allow their users to control aperture, so oftentimes amateurs have no concept of it, and thus don’t quite know how to control it. Basically, aperture is how much light is allowed to enter the lens. Essentially, controlling aperture is to control the focal length — or focus — of still digital cameras. Novice and advanced photographers who have more powerful still digital cameras should adjust their aperture based on how bright the setting is, and where the subjects are in relation to the photographers’ positions. Beginner photographers should use the modes that come with their still digital cameras to trick them into using the right aperture. Portrait mode is good for when subjects are close, and landscape is good for when subjects are far.
Hopefully now you can use your still digital cameras to great effect. If you have any questions about how to control these elements with still digital cameras, feel free to share in the comments.
Posted on February 28th, 2015
Nothing in life is a sure thing. For example, let’s say you purchase a digital camera and it breaks (as even the best technical devices can do) – that could be devastating. But if you have a store warranty then you are in luck as a photo store warranty usually guarantees you will either get a refund, another camera or store credit – depending on the details of the warranty.
Camera stores want you to buy their warranties – it is extra income for them but it also can save you a lot of hassle in the long run.
Whether a good digital camera accidentally falls onto the hard cement, submerges unintentionally in water, or gets played with by well-meaning children — even the finest of electronics can break under those conditions and others.
Therefore, a store warranty for a good digital camera can be a very strategic investment.
- Store warranties ensure a level of service that will solve may problems easily. By paying a bit extra to buy an extended warranty ensures that if the digital camera breaks “…it’s easy to return the item that you have purchased. The reason for this is that you don’t have to wait from the RMA and you don’t have to hope that you will get a new item soon, but rather if the store no longer carries your item they will give you store credit for the original price or a refund, giving you the freedom to purchase a better newer model from them,” according to Yahoo Voices.
- Even if you have a product warranty that gets sent back to the manufacture there is no guarantee that the manufacturer will send you a better product. Yahoo Voices says that “…the benefit to exchanging in the store is that if the product is defective you can take it back immediately and receive an item that is not defective without all of the hassle.”
- An electronics store will upgrade you free of charge and “…If they do not have your model, chances are you will receive either store credit or a refund. Meaning you won’t lose any money, but you might have to pay more to get an equivalent model,” says Yahoo Voices.
“If you decide to go with a store warranty, be sure to choose a company that has been in business for a long time,” says Jonathan Davis, Marketing Director for 42nd Street Photo, “our store has been in business for over 50 years so you know we stand by our products.” In the recent economic downturn, many smaller camera stores were not able to stay in business and had to look for business loans and other financing alternatives in order to stay afloat.
Posted on February 19th, 2015
These days the word “digital camera store” has several meanings. It can be a brick and mortar store in the mall or on the street or it can be an online store (Amazon, eBay, etc.). Upshot – same rules apply when trying to find the right store for a digital camera online or off – research the product you want to purchase, read the reviews, learn the suggested retail prices and then start shopping at reputable retail establishments.
The good news is that a decent digital camera these days are not hard to find – you can walk into 42nd Street Photo and hundreds of models will be open to you. As a matter of fact – if you are a novice or amateur photographer, it can be downright confusing given all the options available. Digital cameras are sold everywhere from major chains to online powerhouses such as Amazon to mom and pop shops on the street corner.
So to avoid too much confusion – here are five tips to help you find the right digital camera store:
1. Decide on what kind of camera you want. You can peruse several expert sites where digital cameras are aptly reviewed such as Steve’s DigiCam blog and CNET.com according to WikiHow.com to help you determine the type of camera you want and need. This is important as you want to make sure you buy a camera within your knowledge and expertise range. If you are an expert photographer willing to pay thousands – some models will be more appealing than others. Novices will likely be turned onto cameras at a lower price range with less features.
2. Find out which stores sell the level of cameras you need. As a professional, you may want to peruse stores that cater more to expert photographers where you find not only cameras but peripherals as well (lighting, screens, lenses, etc.) Sites such as Steve’s DigiCam as well as Yellow Pages will help you locate such specialty shops.
3. Go on TrustPilot or other similar consumer rating sites to ascertain if the store you choose is any good. People on TrustPilot are very honest and will let you know if the store has a good selection; top notch sales help; good delivery services (if store is online); warranties, etc. Check out the reviews to help you learn more about the retail establishment.
4. Look at the prices/warranties. By doing your research ahead of time – you can get a sense of what different cameras cost. You don’t want to pay too much or too little – both can be red flags. Also, make sure the store offers warranties for their products.
5. Helpful Sales Support. One of the key aspects of shopping in a store or even online is helpful sales support. Google+ Local and other popular review sites can help you determine which stores have knowledgeable staff. Whether you are a professional or amateur photographer – being able to interact with a knowledgeable salesperson who can understand the products is a very important part of the buying experience. Reliable shipping is also important, for large bulk purchases of expensive equipment, you may want to consider a freight quote from multiple shipping companies to make sure you are getting the best price from a reliable company.
Posted on January 28th, 2015
If you want to get more out of your camera, you need to know what mode to put it on. Simply leaving it on the automatic setting could result in washed out, blurry pictures, and, if you’re like most people, you probably want to share them online, but won’t be able to because the quality will be poor.
Instead, why not use the special settings the cameras’ manufacturers built when the time calls for them? Here’s how!
Put Your Digital Camera In Portrait Mode For Pictures of People.
Portrait mode is really handy. It makes the camera believe that the subject — the person you want to take a picture of — is in the foreground of the frame, making it choose a shallow depth of field to keep them in focus, while blurring the background. However, this mode works best in well lit conditions, like on a sunny day with a subject facing the sun. The camera might flash even when there’s decent lighting, washing the picture out, so make sure the area is pretty well lit before putting your digital camera in portrait mode, which is usually indicated by a little silhouette.
Put Your Digital Camera In Landscape Mode When Shooting Scenery.
If you want to shoot a landscape, use landscape mode, which is indicated with a little pictorial landscape. Putting your digital camera in this mode will make it use a small aperture to create a well focused picture from the foreground and on. Again, if it reads the foreground as being too dark, it will flash, so be sure to turn the flash off before putting your digital camera in this mode.
Put Your Digital Camera In Macro Mode When You Want to Shoot a Tiny Subject.
Macro mode is really useful if you want to take a picture of, say, a bug on a leaf, or of a particularly vibrant blossom, or of a little toy car. Basically, if you want to shoot a subject that’s smaller than your hand, put the digital camera in macro mode, which is usually indicated with a flower. You should also try to get as physically close to the subject as possible without using the zoom, which will reduce the image’s quality. It should also be noted that you can use screw-on magnifiers (if your camera makes the option available) to improve its macro credentials, since dedicated macro lenses can be expensive.
Put Your Digital Camera In Sports Mode to Catch All the Action.
Sports mode uses a high shutter speed to freeze movement, which allows photographers to snap shots of moving subjects. Many times, photographers will also turn on the continuous shooting option, which shoots multiple images consecutively when in sports mode to make sure that they don’t miss any shots of the action.
Most of the cameras that online digital camera stores sell have these settings. If you have any questions about what mode to put digital cameras in, feel free to ask in the comments.
Posted on January 22nd, 2015
Posted on December 23rd, 2014
Believe it or not, we snap as many photos every two minutes as the whole of humanity did in the 19th century, and yet only two out of every 10 pictures taken with point and shoot digital cameras are ever printed on paper.
Why, then, do we bother taking so many pictures if we’re never going to print them out?
Well, the obvious reason is because many people only share their pictures on social media, but the other reason is because many of those pictures aren’t really worth printing out. Everyday, 1 million selfies are taken, as well as tons of pictures of food and other, less-than-memorable moments.
Basically, people aren’t printing pictures because they’re not really taking good pictures.
Instead of just blindly using point and shoot digital cameras to snap photos, people need to pay attention to composition. Of all artistic elements, composition is the single most important part of photography.
If you’d like to start snapping photos worthy of hanging on your wall or desk, use these tips to take better pictures.
Apply the Rule of Thirds.
The Rule of Thirds is simple. Photographers apply it by aligning a subject with one of four different points in the frame, placing the horizon on a top or bottom line, and letting the photo’s linear features flow from section to section.
A less complicated way of using the rule of thirds while working with point and shoot digital cameras is to imagine that the frame has been divided up into a three by three grid, like a tic-tac-toe board is overlaying the image. The focal point should be where one of the lines intersect, just off center.
Don’t See Objects — See Shapes.
Instead of simply aiming point and shoot digital cameras at a subject to take its pictures, photographers also consider the various other elements in the shot, and use them to make the photo even better. Instead of seeing buildings in the background, they see rectangles, and then consider how those rectangles will affect the image. They use the angles and lines of objects’ shapes to draw attention to the point and shoot digital cameras’ subjects.
Use a Photo Editing Program to Crop.
One of the most obvious ways to make point and shoot digital cameras’ photos even better is to use an image editing program. Though online digital camera stores often sell high-end, professional software, there are also tons of free, useful photo editing programs out there, like Picasa, Gimp, or iPhoto that can color-correct, adjust exposure, or remove red-eye. Most importantly here, they can also crop out unnecessary elements, or crop to adjust the photos’ composition.
Point and shoot digital cameras can take some seriously great photographs, just so long as the users paid attention to the images’ composition. If you use these tips to help you compose your next photos, you’ll find your pictures will turn out much better.
If you have any questions about composition or about point and shoot digital cameras, feel free to ask in the comments.
Posted on December 1st, 2014
It’s time to face the music. In the age of social media, selfies are here to stay, and if you can’t beat ‘em, why not join ‘em? Though they may seem a bit vain, they’re really quite a bit of fun. They’re a great way of saying to your friends and family, “hey, check out what we’re up to!”
Some selfies, however, are better than others. If you’re going to do one, make sure you do it right. Here are a few tips to help you take the perfect selfie.
With DSLR Cameras.
First things first, use a tripod, or set the camera down on an even, steady surface, so that you can take a solid, clear shot. Secondly, use an interval timer, which many DSLRs have built in. That way, you don’t have to constantly reset a self-timer, allowing you to make different expressions and strike different poses.
With Point and Shoot Digital Cameras.
Point and shoot digital cameras are perhaps some of the best selfie-taking tools around, and are what most actually use to take selfies. Unlike with DSLRs, you don’t need to do anything really technical with point and shoot digital cameras to get a great selfie.
Just make sure to eliminate any unnecessary objects in the shot, and use the timer. You may also want to get something in the shot, too, to let people know what you’re doing (other than tooling around with point and shoot digital cameras, of course). And make sure to be silly when using point and shoot digital cameras. A smiling picture is nice and all, but doing something playful will make your smile more genuine.
Whether you’re using more professional DSLR or DSC digital cameras, or one of the best small digital cameras online camera stores have to offer, these simple little tricks will help you take the perfect selfie. If you have any questions, feel free to ask in the comments.
Posted on October 27th, 2014
The entire purpose of point and shoot digital cameras is to point and to shoot, as their implies. They’re the most simple and affordable pieces of equipment that online digital camera stores have. Any amateur photographer can pick one up, and be good to go.
However, these still digital cameras get better and better every year as manufacturers find new ways to improve and innovate their products. Though they’re still meant to be simple, modern still digital cameras can do so much more.
If you’d like to take advantage of your new camera’s high-end features and get more out of it, here are a few tips to help.
Shoot — Don’t Snipe.
Amateur photographers should shoot their subjects, not snipe them. As they look through their still digital cameras’ viewfinders, they should imagine a three by three grid. Instead of putting their subjects right dead center, they should line them up with the grids’ interstices — where the grids’ boxes touch. This creates a more visually dynamic and stimulating picture.
Rely on the Light, Not the Flash.
As great as these modern, still digital cameras are, they still have one technical flaw: their flashes. To conserve space, many manufacturers put their still digital cameras’ flashes too close to the lens. When they go off, these flashes wind up washing out the color, creating flat looking photos. Instead, amateur photographers should just turn their flashes off, and learn to use the areas’ natural lighting. If subjects are dark, they should move them to a place where the light will shine on them better.
Get Familiar With Free Photoshopping Programs.
Although this technically isn’t a way for amateurs to get more out of their still digital cameras directly, this is still worth mentioning. There are tons of free programs available, like iPhoto or Picasa, which amateurs can use to crop, color-correct, adjust exposure, and work on their photos, making them even better than before.
Why spend all that money on a camera if you’re not going to get as much out of it as possible? If you have any questions or other tips to offer, feel free to ask in the comments
Posted on September 24th, 2014
Clothes, toiletries, and cash are a few of the most important things tourists bring with them on vacation, but it’s their still digital cameras that are going to help them make and preserve their memories of the trip.
However, some people’s travel photos are a lot better than others, and it’s not because they’re using higher quality, still digital cameras, either. It’s because they’re thinking about the shot before they take the picture. They don’t just point their still digital cameras at something and take a picture of it.
If you’d like your next set of vacation photos to really wow everyone who sees them, here are a few things you need to think about before snapping a photo.
Thinking About a Viewpoint.
Travelers should get creative with their angles so that they can use their still digital cameras to frame shots in a way that will take regular pictures to new heights. Instead of just shooting straight on, it might be better to try shooting down at street level, or from a bird’s-eye perspective if possible.
Finding the Light.
The less light there is, the more grainy the picture will be. Instead of letting darkness ruin your travel photos, you can try two things. First, you can try adjusting your ISO. Many still digital cameras have this option, and if you need to compensate for a lack of light, you should increase the ISO. Second, try finding a spot where there’s more light or look for where the light is coming from and move around.
Refusing to Zoom In.
The trouble with using still digital cameras’ zoom features is that the closer they zoom in, the less detail they’ll capture. Instead of using the camera to get a close shot, try physically getting as close as possible, and then crop it later. If you have one, you can also try using zoom lens that doesn’t sacrifice image quality for closeness.
Although online digital camera stores can provide you with all the equipment you’ll need to be to take killer travel photos, only you can give yourself the most necessary tool for success — practice. If you want the photos of your next vacation to shock and awe your friends, family, and social media followers, you need to practice viewpoints, refrain from zooming in, and find light.
If you have any questions about using still digital cameras to take awesome travel shots, feel free to ask in the comments.
Posted on August 28th, 2014
Point and shoot digital cameras are designed for the casual photographer — the person who just wants to snap some pictures of their vacations, parties, and outings. They’re for people who just want something they can point and then shoot, as their name implies. They’re for people who want something simple.
As uncomplicated as modern point and shoot digital cameras are, it’s pretty impressive that they can take such high quality photos. Many of the most popular point and shoot digital cameras can even take photos of comparable quality to online digital camera stores’ higher end models.
Of course, getting such spectacular pictures requires a little bit of know how and a lot of practice. Here are a few tips to help you get the most out of your point and shoot digital cameras.
Use the Appropriate Modes
By now you should have noticed that your camera has a little wheel by the shutter button with symbols on it. This allows you to change the camera’s setting instantly depending on what you want to shoot. Most point and shoot digital cameras have the default Automatic (a camera), Action (a stick figure running), Macro (a flower), and Portrait (a person’s head). For example, if you had to take a picture of a flower, you’d use Macro, because it lets you get up close and personal. If you wanted to take a picture of your dog running through the garden, you’d use Action. If you wanted to take a picture of your dog sitting in the garden, you’d use Portrait. For most else, the Automatic setting works just fine.
Ditch Your Flash
The trouble with point and shoot digital cameras’ flashes is that they’re typically right by the lens, which causes the pictures to be flat and shadow-less, and the subjects to be washed out. Instead, turn the flash off. You’re better without it. If your pictures are coming out dark, try to find a better source of light, or re-position yourself and your subject.
Snap Photos of Everyday Events
As previously mentioned, it takes a lot of practice to become a better photographer. Using point and shoot digital cameras for special occasions is the equivalent of pianists playing their pianos on holidays. You’re not going to get any better if you don’t practice. Take some time every now and then to experiment with your camera’s settings.
If you have any questions about improving your photography skills, feel free to ask in the comments.
Posted on August 27th, 2014
In the last year, the country’s top advertising agencies’ interest in video content marketing has risen an astonishing 45%, cementing online video’s status as the premier way to market to web users.
According to an August 26 The Street article, the STRATA survey also found that 67% of advertisers today reported that digital video is the “primary focus” of their clients.
This news is the latest in a long series of findings that reveal the growing effectiveness that a video marketing strategy boasts for businesses big and small.
It’s no coincidence, then, that Google is also 50 times more likely to place websites containing video content on the first page of any given search result than traditional text-based content.
In the STRATA survey, approximately 72% of ad agencies reported their clients preferring to use YouTube as an outlet for their video advertisements, The Street reports. About 36% of clients preferred Hulu, one of YouTube’s competitors.
But while more advertisers are interested in the benefits that video content can offer, many still doubt the return on investment, or ROI, of these video ads. In the STRATA study, about 47% of the ad agencies surveyed reported feeling “fairly confident” that online video ads are cost-effective and a good value. Conversely, however, 40% of agencies reported feeling unsure that online video was a good value, according to The Street.
“While dollars continue to flow to the traditional advertising mediums, our agencies continue to ask for better ways to buy digital video advertising,” Joy Baer, STRATA’s president, told The Street. “We are seeing long-form digital video content increasingly mirror the 30-second TV ad experience, further blurring the lines between devices.”
Posted on August 20th, 2014
Technology has come an incredibly long way since James Maxwell, a British physicist, snapped the first color photograph in 1861. Not only do we take more pictures in two minutes than humans everywhere did in the 1800s, we’re also doing it in increasingly creative — and sometimes even shocking — ways.
Can Drones Take Pictures?
The small robots essentially have stirred up some controversy, but there’s hardly any denying that some photographs, taken with a “a light camera and a quadcopter,” according to The Verge, are breath-taking. “Drones have allowed us to see things we normally wouldn’t have access to — taking us inside a fireworks display and the effort to combat looting in Jordan, for example, and allowing us to monitor wildlife from the sky,” National Geographic News explains. National Geographic recently closed a contest asking users to submit pictures taken with drones. What was the winning entry? The first place winner literally got up close and personal with an eagle, capturing an image of it from maybe two to three feet away. A growing number of brides and grooms are also paying for 30-minute drone photography sessions for memorable, one-of-a-kind wedding photos.
Will Drones Replace Still Digital Cameras?
The short answer is that it’s not likely. True, photography has progressed over the years. (The first photographs were actually printed on tin sheets, copper sheets, or even glass plates!) Even so, the best small digital cameras still afford some conveniences and perks that drones cannot. Wedding photography, for example, is vastly less complicated with a DSC digital camera or c mount digital camera. Using a traditional photographer typically requires just one person. Opting for drone photography will entail a team of workers — including at least one team member on the ground to position people in the picture, and another person remotely controlling the drone.
Drone photography is cool and useful, but don’t count out still digital cameras and online digital camera stores just yet. Drones may be able to snap pictures from completely unique angles, but it is still something of a trial to actually do it.
Posted on July 1st, 2014
Having cheaper, lower end cameras don’t make people poor photographers the same way having top-of-the-line still digital cameras won’t make people great photographers. It’s all in how you use these still digital cameras.
Great photographers understand concepts like aperture, have great composition, and incorporate interesting light into their photos. They don’t just point and shoot — they stop and think about the picture they’re looking at, the picture they’re seeing in their head, and the picture they want to take.
If you’d like to start making better use of your still digital cameras, here are a few tips to help.
When you’re taking portrait style shots, you want to use a simple background. This helps keep attention on your subject. If there’s something unrelated to the subject in the frame, get rid of it. If you can’t move it, then go someplace else to shoot.
If you’re going to use still digital cameras to take a selfie, you might as well shake things up a bit. Take a picture with a totem — something that reflects your real personality, like your favorite coffee mug or the novel you’re currently reading. Try being silly, too. Make a face that Calvin or Hobbes would pull.
Fill the frames of still digital cameras with as much of the subject as the possible without having to use the zoom function — get physically close to it. It’s okay if part of the subjects get cut off. It might actually make your pictures more interesting. You’ll also want to use a softer lighting if possible, which will minimize any imperfections.
Unfortunately, buying the biggest, best pieces of equipment that online camera stores have to offer will not make you a great photographer. It takes a little bit of know how, and a lot of practice with still digital cameras. Try testing out some of these tips the next you feel like shooting, and your photos will be more interesting visually.
If you have any questions about using still digital cameras, feel free to ask in the comments.
Posted on May 29th, 2014
Did you know that there are over 200 million active Instagram users sharing about 60 million photos every single day? If you want to stand out amongst the torrent of #selfies, #food, and #instagood competing for your followers’ attention, you need to take some pictures that, well, stand out.
Though many think that if they get the best still digital cameras from online digital camera stores, their photography skills would improve. These folks, though, are sadly deluded. Great still digital cameras do not make great photographers. It’s all about the skill and experience of those behind the still digital cameras’ lenses, after all.
This means that if you’d like to start getting the attention you want on your favorite photo sharing network, you need to improve your skills. So, here are a few tips to help you use still digital cameras just like the most followed Instagram users!
Try Taking Your Pictures Outside.
Natural light is always better than anything a lightbulb could produce, even if the sun’s not out and it’s not a particularly bright day. In fact, clouds actually help to reduce glare. Natural lighting produces more accurate details, and more vibrant colors.
Shoot Landscape–Not Portrait.
Try shooting landscape instead of portrait. This means that the picture is wider than it is tall, like a landscape painting. Plus, it’s easier to keep your hand steady when you shoot landscape, too. Also make sure to be level with your subjects, but don’t put them right smack in the middle. Doing so will make the photos static and boring. Instead, put them just out of the center.
Touch the Photos Up.
There are tons of superb, free photo editing software available nowadays for mobile devices, laptops, and desktops. Once you’ve gotten the pictures off of your still digital cameras, which is easier now than ever before thanks to innovative new models that are being dubbed “smartcameras,” make sure to increase the exposure, to brighten up dark photos. You can also play around with a few other things, but this is the bare minimum.
There you have it! If you know what to do before, during, and after you shoot, you’ll start taking better pictures right away. If you have any questions about how to use still digital cameras to take better Instagram photos, feel free to ask in the comments.
Posted on April 28th, 2014
The majority of still digital cameras are just point-and-click models — you just point them at the subject, click the shutter button, et voila — you’ve taken a nice picture. Although this simplicity can be extremely advantageous for those of us who are less artistically (or technologically) inclined, it can also be detrimental. Those who rely on the “auto” mode of their still digital cameras simply aren’t getting their money’s worth from their photographic investments.
While it’s perfectly fine to use still digital cameras this way, it’s easy to learn how to take full advantage of all its different features. That being said, here are a few simple tips to help you do just that!
Invest in a Tripod
People investing in still digital cameras may as well invest in a tripod or monopod, too. You see, still digital cameras need more light than film cameras, which is why it takes about a second longer to take a picture–because the shutter stays open longer. If your hand shakes during that one second delay, you’ll blur the picture. Even just a small movement will lessen the quality of your photos. If you use a tripod or monopod, though, your pictures will never be as blurry again.
Focus Before Taking a Picture
No, don’t focus yourself — focus your camera. The majority of still digital cameras can be focused by pressing the shutter button down just halfway. This helps your camera define the subjects better, and will dramatically improve your photos. Plus, it reduces the amount of time it’ll take for it to shoot the actual picture.
Use the Other Presets
The still digital cameras’ manufacturer built those presets for a reason, you know. Take some time to get familiar with them, so that you know which one to turn on when the occasion calls for it. For example, you’d use the “action” setting if you want to take some pictures of your kids’ soccer game. If you want to take a picture of your kitty as it softly naps, try using the “portrait” setting. If you want to take a nice shot of the whole family, switch to the “landscape” setting.
Even if you searched all of the digital camera stores you could find online for the most valuable deal, chances are you want to get the most out of your camera as you possibly can. Following these tips will not only help you do that, but also help you become a better photographer. If you have any questions about still digital cameras, feel free to ask in the comments.
Posted on April 8th, 2014
On March 3rd, 2.7 million Twitter users retweeted Ellen DeGeneres’s celebrity-packed group selfie, breaking Twitter records and temporarily causing interruptions and downtime on the popular social-sharing site. The group selfie, snapped at the Oscars and featuring stars Jennifer Lawrence, Bradley Cooper, Meryl Streep, Julia Roberts, Brad Pitt, Angelina Jolie, and more, surpassed retweets of the most shared picture of Twitter up until that point — a picture of President Obama hugging Michelle Obama (tweeted along with the caption, “Four More Years”).
Selfies and Wefies Take Instagram By Storm
“The selfie is here to stay,” New York Daily News reports. “If an image features a person’s face it is 38 percent more likely to be liked and 32 percent more likely to attract comments. Perhaps surprisingly, it doesn’t matter whose face or how many of them are in shot.” DeGeneres’s tweet is taking a large part in the growing popularity of group selfies. Jimmy Kimmel tried to replicate the famous image by posing with a crowd and three of the Clintons, Bill, Hillary, and Chelsea. Since then, many others have been staging and posting “wefies” on Twitter and Instagram.
What Else Is Out There?
People are not flocking into digital camera stores and buying digital cameras just to take selfies, experts continue. Consumers are also using all sorts of digital cameras, including still digital cameras, to capture trips, good meals and bad meals, cooking expenditures, weight loss and/or fitness progress, and more. Food accounts, for example, take a variety of different angles. Users snap photos of healthy recipes, snacks, and food substitutions, or photographs of elegantly plated meals and desserts at restaurants. One of the latest crazes — according to The Daily Mail – is taking pictures of sad desk lunches. Users contribute to the account by sending pictures of meager, drab meals eaten alone at work.
Social-sharing sites are revolutionizing the worlds of amateur and professional photography. DeGeneres’s record-breaking shot shows that digital cameras, including still digital cameras, are often utilized to snap selfies, or occasionally share meals, trips, and recipes with friends and family.
Posted on March 14th, 2014
If you’re in the market for a new camera, you have two choices: traditional film cameras, or still digital cameras. Each has their own advantages and disadvantages, which you must understand if you hope to make a smart purchase.
Still digital cameras store pictures and video as tiny bits of memory on an SSD card or internal hard drive, as opposed to the expensive film that most traditional cameras use. This also allows you to take more pictures than film does. You can take thousands of pictures until the memory card is full or the battery runs out. What’s more, digital cameras allow you to quickly upload your snapshots to any computer for sharing and printing quickly.
After taking pictures, you can then view them on the camera’s LCD screen to make sure that you got a good shot. This allows you the chance to retake the picture and make absolutely sure that you got what you needed.
As mentioned, still digital cameras do have some disadvantages. There’s a slight delay between clicking the shutter button and and actually taking the picture. The more professional the still digital cameras, the less lag time, but most point-and-click consumer level cameras have a one second delay, which may be a bit of an inconvenience.
Perhaps the biggest advantage that traditional film cameras have over still digital cameras is that their picture quality is higher. Yes, you have to carry around film and you can’t check to make sure you got your shot, but you can bet that with a little bit of know how, you can take higher quality pictures every time.
Digital cameras have several advantages over traditional film cameras, but if you’re most concerned about the quality of your photographs, then it may be best to stick to film.
Keep this information in mind the next time you go to any digital camera stores, and you’ll be able to make a smarter purchase. If you have any questions about still digital cameras, feel free to ask in the comments.
Posted on December 28th, 2012
Etiquette is a very important issue in photography because for most of us we interact so closely with our subjects or people related to the subjects we are shooting. The book definition of etiquette is ‘The customary code of polite behavior in society or among members of a particular profession or group.’ As far as how I myself see etiquette is being humble and polite, using words like ‘please’ and ‘thank you’ and respecting the people you work with. We are going to cover a few tips for etiquette photography that we hope you will find helpful.
- Be Respectful of all laws and cultures where photography may be frowned upon or you may need consent or authorization to photograph in a particular area.
- When shooting models do not touch them when directing poses, this will be considered rude so give them their space. Avoid using a commanding voice and be sure to praise and thank the models. Don not put blame or say demeaning things to your models as this can affect their attitude and the outcome of the shoot.
- Communicate often with the models about their interest as this will create a better atmosphere.
- Always ask permission before taking someone’s photograph. Be sure before publishing anyone’s photograph that you have a signed release form. They do have the right to sue if their permission was not granted.
These are just a few tips that cover photography etiquette; we hope you find these helpful. Be sure to stop by http://www.42photo.com
Posted on December 20th, 2012
The Canon EOS M is a compact camera with a magnesium alloy body that comes in four colors, white, red, black, and silver. The price for the Canon EOS M is in the $700-$800 range. The Canon EOS M is really a simple camera with buttons and dials on the camera kept to a minimum. The Canon EOS M also comes with large touchscreen on the back which is the preferred method for interacting with the camera. This is also Canon’s first mirrorless digital camera and it definitely meets the Canon standard. The sensor is as large as you would find on the majority of Canon’s DLSR cameras which has fantastic image quality. The Canon EOS-M also comes with a new EF-M mount 22mm f/2 STM lens. The Canon EOS M also offers full HD 1080p movie mode. The only thing we found lacking with this camera is a lack of a grip and the battery life only allows for about 230 shots. Overall this is really a great camera for every level of photographer, easy to use, picture quality is outstanding. Below are some other features of this camera.
Canon EOS M key features
- New EF-M lens mount (optimized for APS-C sensor size)
- 18MP APS-C ‘Hybrid CMOS’ sensor
- Continuous autofocus in movie mode with subject tracking
- 14-bit DIGIC5 processor
- ISO 100-12800 standard, 25600 expanded
- 4.3 fps continuous shooting, 3 fps with autofocus tracking
- 1080p30 video recording, stereo sound (with 25p or 24p options)
- External microphone socket and adjustable sound recording level
- 1040k dot 3:2 touch-sensitive ClearView II LCD (capacitative type, multi-touch support)
- Standard EOS hot-shoe for external flash (no built-in flash)
- ‘Creative Filters’ image-processing controls, previewed live on-screen
If you are interested in this camera be sure and stop by http://www.42photo.com
Posted on December 12th, 2012
Christmas is right around the corner and you might want to send out personal Christmas cards to friends and family. If you are thinking of including a family photo with your card we are going to cover some tips in this article to ensure you have the best Christmas card possible.
Equipment – You want to make sure you have the photography equipment. You don’t have to hire a professional or even be a professional photographer, but that doesn’t mean you want to have a poor photo either. Consider using a tripod so your camera is steady. Also consider natural light unless of course you have Christmas tree in your photo.
Start Early – The best thing you can do is starting shooting your photos early and don’t wait until the last minute. This way if you don’t like the way they turned out you can reshoot them.
Photo Idea – Be creative with whatever the subject matter may be in your photo. You might prefer a Christmas tree in the photo or something religious or formal. It’s all up to you but be creative and make the photo really stand out!
Picking a Card – Once you have taken your photo you need a card to stick it on or inside of. There are many options available for cards that you can either create or even buy from a store like Wal-Mart. You can pick up one sided cards that are usually 4”x8” that will accommodate a photograph, or you can go with a folding card which are very popular due to their professional look.
We hope these few tips help with the creation of your Christmas card this year and be sure and stop by http://www.42photo.com if you are looking a great camera to capture those holiday shots.
Posted on December 6th, 2012
The opportunity for winter photography is right around the corner if not already in your area. If you live in the part of the country where it snows on a regular basis through the winter then you can shoot some great photographs. We are going to cover a few tips that should help you take some great photos.
When is the best time to shoot? Usually the best time is early morning or late evening when the sun is not directly overhead. The reflection of the sun off the snow can make things look hazy but you can also counter this with a lens hood. Mornings are also good right after it snowed because you don’t have to worry about footprints and the ground is untouched.
Dress Appropriately. I know this seems obvious but be sure you have all the right items, from warm to waterproof. You lose heat quickly in snowy conditions so don’t forget a hat as your head gives off a lot of heat.
Have Your Equipment Ready. Have all your equipment ready including batteries fully charged. Try to keep your camera in a camera bag while moving around and don’t let it get too cold.
Adjust Your Exposure. You will have to adjust your exposure as snow will confuse your camera and make the snow look gray. If you have a winter or snow mode on your camera then turn it on, if not you will have to make manual adjustments. Frame and focus your shot, zoom in to a bright area of snow. Then using your exposure compensation button, dial in a value between +2/3 to +1 2/3 EV, this will depend on the brightness. Take a meter reading and use those settings after switching to manual. This should make the snow look white.
Be creative with your snow photography, try different shutter speeds and be sure and shoot in RAW format for easier editing in post production. We hope these few tips help and be sure and stop by http://www.42photo.com for all your photography needs.
Posted on December 4th, 2012
This is the time of the year when many of the world’s cultures celebrate holidays that involve lights of some kind. Years ago to get good shots of holiday lights could be quite a task due to the sensitivity of film, this is no longer the case as new technology has solved this issue with the introduction of DSLR cameras, ISO settings, and auto–exposure. Using a fast ISO around 800 is a great setting for shooting holiday lights.
I will also touch on will be the need of a flash, there will be very few occasions for your flash. When you are taking a photo without flash there are a few things you want to remember, use a slow shutter speed and try using tripod if possible to avoid camera shake. If you in the middle of s shot and you are not sure if there is enough lighting just go ahead and take one with the flash and one without the flash. If you are shooting holiday lights there is probably no need for a flash at all. Another great tip is to start photographing around twilight, this way you capture some of the sky in the background instead of complete blackness. Let’s say you are photographing a friend in front of lights, if you use the flash you like up your friend but the light are really dim. If you don’t use your flash you get the lights but a very shady picture of your friend. Well luckily there is a setting on most cameras for an issue just like this. The symbol for this setting on many cameras is sort of a hieroglyph that tries to indicate person at night in front of lights, using this setting should solve that problem.
Lets see what we have gone over that should help you.
- Turn off your flash unless you have a very good reason to use it.
- Use a fast ISO – we suggest ISO 800.
- Avoid camera shake.
- Use a tripod
We hope that you find this few tips helpful and useful. Be sure and stop by http://www.42photo.com for all your photography needs.
Posted on November 22nd, 2012
Like any profession, there can be a time when your clients may see to be unhappy or uncooperative. There are easy ways to handle this kind of customer service without losing your cool or your temper. One main rule is to always remain professional and pleasant, even if the client is being uncooperative. The following are a few tips to help you with these particular situations.
- Remain calm at all times. Try to speak in a monotone voice and make sure to speak with the customer as well as listen to the customer.
- Communicate. Allow time for the client to express their feelings then you reciprocate with a positive response. Clients like to know that their feelings are being considered.
- Try to reach a middle ground. If a client is not satisfied with a session, offer to retake the photographs with either the same setting or another setting that you both like. If all else fails, return the money so that they may go somewhere else.
- If a client is just becoming irate and to the point of insulting, it is ok to ask them to leave and you refund their money. Yes, there is the saying that the customer is always right but there is a point of “being right” does not mean being insulting. Remember you are human too and deserve respect.
- If you have to have a reshoot session, if the clients are pleased with the second round of images, offer to them a discount or complimentary image. Even though they may seem dissatisfied at first, offering the client discounts or freebies will definitely lift the mood.
- There are some clients out there who will say they did not request a specific feature or did not want to have a certain image. The best way to avoid these situations is to have careful documentation and itemized request form before any photo shoot. Have the client initials at all request so that there may not be any misunderstandings. Once again, this is a form of communication that is essential with any business venture.
Pleasing every client is a difficult task that not even the most famous photographer can do. There are just some people out there that are never truly satisfied no matter how hard you work or how much you try to please them. Remember that a good way to advertise your business is by word of mouth, so try your best to please your clients and make this a positive experience. If you are looking on a great deal for a camera please stop by http://www.42photo.com
Posted on November 19th, 2012
If you have reached a point in your photography were you will be traveling for photo shoots, the most important thing is keep your equipment safe and protected at all times. There are a few essential tips that can help with the travel and ensure a safe journey for you as well as your camera.
- It is common sense to understand that checking you camera in to be placed in the cargo hold is not the best idea. Compact your equipment back to the bare essentials, making sure it meets with your airlines carry-on requirements, and carry it with you on the plain.
- Memory cards are not affected by the security screening at the airport.
- If possible, place your camera bag underneath the chair in front of you to prevent any other baggage from crushing your camera in the overhead compartment.
- Make sure you have a well-ventilated and cushioned camera bag. The most expensive bag is not necessarily the right choice, but rather one that meets your needs and protects your camera.
- If possible, label all equipment with your name as well as contact information. Place a specific marker on your camera so that if by some chance it is stolen, there is some way to identify the camera.
- If driving, always keep your camera with you; never leave it in the car. As a photographer the camera is your livelihood and must be protected.
- Since your equipment is very important to you, check with your insurance provider to determine if you can insure your equipment. This will be essential if for some reason your camera is stolen or perhaps damaged.
- Also check with the manufacture of the camera and verify your warranty and the conditions of the warranty.
- Wherever you go, research beforehand the closet cameras shop just in case you need to replace a piece of equipment.
Those are just a few tips that can help you with any traveling you must do for a photo-shoot. Be safe and always protect your camera equipment. For the best camera equipment please stop by http://www.42photo.com
Posted on November 9th, 2012
Just like photographing children, photographing birds can be very challenging. It requires the photographer to be patient, quick and prepared at all times to capture the image. Here are a few tips to capturing the images of these magnificent creatures.
- Location. Just like any other photo shoot, the location is the most important part. A photographer can capture birds in any location, but it all depends on what type of birds you want that determines which location to choose. Most of the times you can just work in your back yard but if you really want to venture out you can go to the woods. If the location happens to fall on someone’s land, be sure to ask for permission.
- As much as you will want it to happen, a bird will not just come up to you and pose. Instead you must be patient and prepared for a long day. You will need to be hidden and camouflaged into the woods in order to not startle the birds. Build a hide close to your location and use sticks, bushes, logs, as part of the hide. Make sure you position the hide at the perfect angle to your focal point and allow enough room for yourself and your equipment.
- Like mentioned above, the bird will not just come up to you, instead you will need to coax him onto the perch. The best way to do so is to lure the bird with food. Before venturing off, make sure to research what types of birds you may encounter and the particular food they may enjoy. Set the food either on top of around the perch within an appropriate distance from your lens.
- Your equipment is essential, so be prepared before you go on your venture. Have plenty of camera memory space, fully charged batteries, and a tripod.
- The best time of the day to capture your images is either in the morning or in the evening when the light is at its softest. It is best to adjust your settings to a faster shutter speed as the birds can be startled by the slightest sound.
Enjoy yourself during this adventure and take many photographs. Capturing the image of a bird can be time consuming and difficult, but can be fun. If you need a camera for next bird photography session be sure and stop by http://www.42photo.com
Posted on November 5th, 2012
Now that you have picked out your equipment, practiced different photography aspects, and have become familiar with your technique; it is time to decide what area of expertise you would like to pursue. They are many forms of photography jobs that can be performed and all are rewarding. The following are some of the top photography jobs out there you may want to think about pursuing.
- Wedding photography. Wedding photography is fun and exciting with many rewards. You are responsible for capturing every moment of this glorious day for a couple and your photographs will be cherished for a lifetime. The photographer has to be on their toes and very familiar with all techniques as well as aspects of the camera. There are no reshoots during this time so it is best to feel comfortable with wedding jobs.
- Fashion photography. Fashion photography can be an intense job for any level pf photographer. The high demand for professional images is increasing daily. A photographer must be able to adjust lighting based on the color or abstract of the clothing and must be able to capture the image from all different angles.
- Family photography. Family photography is best for individuals who are very people friendly. Most families look for photographers that have a unique flare to their style and who like to step out of the box of norm with the family. A good photographer will also be able to keep the attention of little ones in order to have a successful photo-shoot.
- Model/portrait photography. This is very similar to the fashion photography but instead it deals with the model itself rather than the clothes. This particular type of photography is good for those who can capture the essence of the individual through their eyes. Many of the photographers are used for headshots and job advertisements. These particular photographs tend to be less about the scenery and more about the individual, so focus on the face and especially the eyes.
- Celebrity photography. Not to be confused with paparazzi, celebrity photography would be individuals who are hired by reputable magazines and news programs to capture images at awards shows, charity functions, and movie premiers. These particular types of photographer are respected in the celebrity community and are in high demand. The photographer must be on their toes and very experienced with capturing images.
Those are just some of the potential areas that a photographer might want to pursue in the future. All jobs have their benefits and rewards as well as exciting challenges. Before venturing out to a job you should ask yourself if it is right for you. Do you feel confident in your work to pursue this particular job? Practice is the best and possible only way to perfect your capabilities. Be sure and stop by http://www.42photo.com for all your camera needs.
Posted on October 31st, 2012
It can be hard deciding on what camera lens is best. We are going to quickly cover a few tips that will help you.
- A good lens has sharpness around the edges as well as in the center
- A good lens can capture with sharpness at any focal length and at any aperture setting
- A good lens should control distortion well, meaning lines don’t appear curved inward or outward
- A good lens has an even brightness level from the center to the edge of the frame. It should not get darker as it moves toward the edges
- Good lenses should also have high contrast producing vibrant images
- The lens should also be able to overcome flares, this usually happen when the lens is pointed directly into a bright light source
- The lens also shouldn’t fade to blue or red as it time wears on the lens
- A good lens should also be fast and accurate no matter what the conditions are
These are just a few guidelines you might consider when purchasing a lens. If you are in the market for a lens be sure and stop by http://ww.42photo.com
Posted on October 22nd, 2012
You maybe have hit a roadblock with photography if it’s one of your current hobbies. It could be that you have become bored or your creativity is just not there, not to worry it happens to everyone whether your hobby is photography or something else. If you have found yourself in this position we are going to provide a few tips that may help you out of this predicament.
If you have been using the same old equipment then maybe it’s time to try something new. New equipment can usually produce new results that in the end will peak your interest once again in the fantastic world of photography. If you have been using point and shoot cameras then maybe it’s time to move onto DSLR camera, or possibly try a new camera lens. If you haven’t had the chance to use a tripod this can also provide you with a new opportunity.
Join a Community
You might also try joining a photography community or joining a photography group. You may learn some new tips or tricks from joining with other people who have the same photography interests. You might also consider taking a photography course at the local college or school in your area for new ideas.
Change Your Focus Point
Sometimes it’s best to change the subject or objects you have been photographing. It helps to expand you world of photography, so look around and find something new to shoot. You might also look at professional work for new ideas.
In the end don’t spend too much time thinking about what you are going to shoot, just start shooting and enjoy yourself. Remember it’s a hobby and have fun with it. Be sure and stop by http://www.42photo.com for all your camera needs.
Posted on October 18th, 2012
If you are new to photography you may be facing issues with blurry shots. You spent a good amount of money on a high tech camera but your photos still don’t look great as you want them to be. You may have tried a tripod and still you have problem. We are going to cover some causes you may have overlooked or not even familiar with.
Slow Shutter Speed
Avoid using a slow shutter speed, if the shutter speed is lower than 1/focal length you are going to have a blurry photo. I would suggest using a shutter of 1/60 or more if you are using a 50mm lens. The longer the focal length of the lens the faster the shutter speed should be.
Photographing in the right light quality can affect the sharpness of your photo. Photographing in flat lighting will cause your photograph to not look as sharp. It’s best to photograph in the right contrast with good light and darks that will keep outcome looking sharp.
If you are photographing an object that is moving than this will also cause your photos to be blurry no matter what the shutter speed. In this case it might be best to use a flash to freeze the object that you are photographing.
High ISO can also cause a photo to lack sharpness by causing noise. Most high end cameras will have little issue if any with noise. If you aren’t shooting with that high end camera you will notice loss of detail when using a high ISO. Try to use a low ISO when shooting to ensure sharpness.
It’s very important to keep your lens clean as well to avoid blurry photos. Check your lens for fingerprints, dirt, scratches, and mildew. These will show up as foggy areas on your photo. If you do have a scratch on your lens then the bad news is you will more than likely have to get it replaced.
We hope these few tips help you if you are having issues with blurry photos. Be sure and stop by http://www.42photo.com for all of your camera needs.