Monthly Archives: July 2016

Tips Nature Photography for Beginners

Tips Nature Photography for Beginners

maxresdefaultNature photography is one such hobby or profession that can let you discover new things with each and every step you take. In fact, photography as such is always a learning experience, and although you may learn new techniques as per the modern trends, the joy and excitement of clicking a new picture is always new ever time. For beginners, photographing the nature can be an exciting and challenging hobby. The trick is to enjoy what you are doing, and the results will automatically show in the frames. Beginners in photography need to follow some basics of photography that would help them capture better frames with ease. Help for beginners would best be in the form of some practical training, but sometimes this may not always be possible for everybody.

Tips for Beginners

Maintenance of your equipment would need to be your first priority once you set out into the wilderness. Pack all your equipment, and spare batteries along with some cleaning brushes, which might prove to be very useful lest you may end up having too much dust on the mirror or lens. Do not leave home without a tripod. Rubber boots, bug sprays, flashlights, compass, and a good quality outdoor clothing will be a blessing in disguise when you begin with your photography sessions.

Study the patterns of light. The light in the outdoors is definitely not under your control but you can maneuver your lens or wait for the right moment to capture the best frame. Look for interesting shadow patterns and variations of light on your subject. The early morning hours can be the best time for you to scrounge around and explore the woods. This would help you secure some really interesting and unusual frames. Light at noon may be too harsh and cause hard shadows. Of course, it would also depend on your subject as well.

Nature photography is not as difficult as it may seem. If you have that inborn creative streak in you, then finding interesting subjects can never be an issue for you, whatever location you may be at. Nature offers us so many diverse things that it would require years to capture all this in your camera. Beginners need not worry about the location always, develop your skills in making your power of observation really strong. You may point your lens at birds or plants, but remember, you ought to know how much of what you see, should be captured on your camera. Avoid too much clutter in the frame, your subject may tend lose its identity in all the elements. Some ideas that may prove to be of some help for beginners can include, maintaining a habit of sketching. This would help you to be accurate about the way you compose your photograph. This is not always required, but sketching can help you think about various angles and perspectives as well. In case you are camping out, and come across a very interesting location, you can plan out the time and the various angles, which would add an interesting dimension to your photos. Keep clicking, as this is the only way you will learn.

Getting closer to your subject can also give you amazing results. If it’s an animal, you are about to photograph, it requires quick thinking. The right timing is the bottom line for good snaps! You cannot be thinking about the angles in such cases; with practice, you will be able to focus on how your picture should be composed, in a jiffy. You can get a larger than life image with a good close up shot. (As long as you have the required lens!) Sometimes, focusing on the eyes or having an action shot can make all the difference. Technique and patience is required to obtain a good frame. Standing at different levels can also give you newer angles to photograph your subject.

Always remember to use your tripod for those difficult shots. This would let you maneuver your camera with ease, and also let you experiment with different shutter speeds, especially at nighttime. The last thing you need is a blurred photograph of something you really wanted to capture!

Beginners need to keep reading and researching about nature photography as much as possible. Refer to the works of great photographers, and try to analyze why it makes a good photograph. This would help you get better nature shots and with time, you can utilize what all you have read into your practical experience. So, do not forget about one important thing, i.e., to enjoy what you are doing, as this is the only way you can procure excellent clicks without too much effort.

Sports Photography Tips and Techniques

Sports Photography Tips and Techniques

Sports personalities undergo months of preparation for the big moment. What you don’t know is that the preparation is almost the same for sports photographers. Beautiful snazzy photographs in sport magazines or newspapers are not clicked quite by ‘accident’. It takes a skilled professional to know the finer nuances to capture a stunning photograph.

Sports photography is a part of photojournalism. Many such talented professionals are sought after by magazines and newspapers to capture the action for these publications. Sport photographers need to know all about that particular sport. A beginner to photography needs to study sports that interest him/her to be able to judge the right moment. A sports photographer should not only be well-read, but should also develop the right instinct to be able to capture the most energetic moments on the field.

Tips and Techniques

Study the Sport and the Master the Equipment
As mentioned before, you must be aware about the details related with the sport. It could be baseball or cricket, you should be aware of the positions of the players and the basics of how the game is played. This will help you to know where you need to focus. You need to anticipate and take risks to end up with stunning visuals. Knowing the operation of the equipment will also help to gain control over the camera. Once you are confident about the various zoom settings and shutter speeds, moving the camera as per your requirement will be quite a breeze. Practice will make you perfect.

Develop Powers of Observation
Learn to study things around you. Keep your vision focused and pay attention to detail. You might need to spend hours in one place. Observe things and pick out minute details. You can never know which element may give you a beautiful photograph. You must also be prepared for the right moment. This gives you the chance of controlling the settings and clicking the particular moment on camera. After all, it is all about the moment, whether it’s a win on the baseball field, or a tumble on the ski slopes. Timing matters.

Select the Right Location
The way you position yourself is of utmost importance. This location should give you space to move around and also pick interesting angles. Concentrate on the background while selecting the location. The background should highlight the image in the foreground. This will end up giving you maximum impact.

Pre-focus on the Subject
This genre of photography would need you to develop skills that help you anticipate the moment. For this, you can even focus in advance on the subject or area. This will allow you to press the shutter exactly when you require and avoid wastage of time spent in focusing on the subject. Focusing before the actual action moment will help to capture the right moment. You need to anticipate things in advance. For example, in baseball, you must know where the ball may go after it’s hit, or you need to be aware how the bat may swing and in which direction.

Use High Shutter Speeds
A high shutter speed is very important if you want to capture the right moment. A high shutter speed will freeze the moment. For indoor shots, however, you would need to use a higher ISO due to low light problems. Burst mode will allow you to capture images through the process of continuous shooting. A telephoto lens will help you to capture long shots with great ease if you haven’t managed to get front row seats.

Don’t Always Focus your Attention on One Area
This may seem a little contradictory to what is mentioned earlier, but then photography is also about experimentation and risks. Avoid keeping your focus only on one point. Look around for different moments. You can capture the ecstatic expression on a player’s face or a player showing plenty of aggression. The options are aplenty and all you have to do is to look around.

With practice, this is one skill that should be developed if you are looking at it on a professional level. Be at the right place and at the right time. That’s what makes a truly good professional sports photographer.

Information About Studio Photography

Information About Studio Photography

Photography is the art of experiencing the world through the lens and essentially capturing these experiences with or without colors. This fascinating field is vast and includes several specialization areas like fashion, outdoors, nature, wildlife, still life, color, black and white photography, and so on. If you have a keen interest in studio photography and wish to pursue a career in this field, then setting up a studio is the first thing you will need to do, once you’ve completed your formal training in the subject.

The earliest reference to studio photography dates back to 1853 when noted portrait photographer Gaspard-Félix Tournachon, who was popularly known by his pseudonym Nadar, opened his portrait studio in Paris. As the techniques evolved gradually, more photographers started opening their own studios, which were essentially used to create portraits, since portraits were one of the most popular forms of photography back then. The evolution in this field sped up after this period due to the advent of color films, polarized films, effective lighting-techniques, and many more inventions.

Common Types

Studio photography is very different from outdoor photography, since a photographer cannot just walk into a studio with his camera and start shooting. There goes a lot of pre-production work in the former style. Outdoor photography is more spontaneous, where in a naturally occurring scene is captured through a camera without manipulating the lighting and other conditions. Whereas studio photography allows the photographer to create a scene and control all the elements of it starting from the lighting to the position of the subject. It is a vast genre which is extensively branched.

Portrait Photography: The creation and reproduction of photographic portraits was perhaps the first commercial use of photography. The noted French photographer André-Adolphe-Eugène Disdéri invented the process of exposing multiple images onto one negative and thus revolutionized the world of portrait photography. He was the one who popularized celebrity portraiture. Today it is a vast industry with professional and amateurs equally interested in the art.

Advertisement Illustration / Product Photography: The use of photography for advertising actually began with the advent of the technology to duplicate photographs on a large-scale, and is dated back to the 1850s. Owing to the progressive printing techniques and the ability to reproduce quality photographs, photography became a popular tool used in the advertising field. Although initially it included simple photographs of models and products, the digital developments have now revolutionized the use of high-technology graphics, digital editing, and enhancements.

Still Life Photography: In 1826, Joseph Nicephore Niepce was the first one to capture the first permanent still life photograph. Still life photography has been extensively used in all the mass media. You can come across various magazines, newspapers, advertising brochures containing still life photography. It is a very popular form of photography and happens to be one of the branches or one of the possibilities in the studio photography arena.

Fashion Photography: This is perhaps one of the most popular branches. Although it was introduced somewhere around the 1960s or 1970s along with colored photography, it was the 80s that ushered a touch of glamor, sexuality, and eroticism in the world of fashion photography. With notable names like Helmut Newton, Guy Bourdin, and Sarah Moos, the focus shifted on the overall message and feel of the photograph rather than the fabrics and accessories of the models.

Things Required For Setting Up a Studio

In case you’re looking for a fully equipped photography studio, it is possible to get one on rent, but then again, it is nothing like possessing your own studio. The studio can either be floor-based or ceiling-based. A floor based studio light stands for the light and background support whereas in a ceiling based studio, background rollers are mounted on the ceiling and a rail system helps to adjust the positioning of lights. Here are some of the other things that you need to take care of:

Camera and Related Equipment: Based on your preferences, you will need a good camera, which is fully equipped with all the essentials and accessories. Various filters for adding effects are a must. Also make sure you have adequate supply of films and batteries. Digital studios require digital scanners, printers, and copiers, whereas a normal camera would require a proper dark room for developing and printing photographs.

Background Canvases and Props: Depending on your genre, you need to equip your studio with all the essential artwork equipment. Make sure you have a variety of backgrounds suitable for your genre. Specialized props are also a prerequisite in case you use props frequently. Make sure your studio is well equipped with all the basic facilities that people will require while working there. It is always better to have a changing room for the models.

Lights: The lighting can be finalized based on the camera that you will use, and the size of subjects you will be capturing with it. The lighting style varies for portraits, still life or specialized fashion photography so decide the kind of work you want to take up, and get a lighting system that suits your requirements. In addition to this you can have various types of sources like warm or cool lights based on the color temperature that you require for your photography projects. The lighting bulbs, stands, and their placement are very essential while setting up the workplace.

Tips to Become a Fashion Photographer

Tips to Become a Fashion Photographer

Most of us are enticed by the glamor of the fashion industry and want to be related to it in some way. While fashion photography is a great way to become a part of the industry, entering it can be a tough process. Fashion photography is a career that requires you to be excellent in your work, stand out from the rest of the thousands of fashion photographers who are trying to make it out there, and have the right network to get known. Education in photography is an additional boost you can give your career. Here, we tell you how to break into this competitive field.

What it Takes to Become a Fashion Photographer

A fashion photographer is someone who photographs models, accessories, or clothing to be showcased in fashion magazines, and cover fashion shows in some cases. This professional ensures that the subject of the photograph is highlighted in the best possible manner by using the right kind of lighting, backdrop, and any other accessories that will help the subject stand out. While fashion photographers usually work with fashion magazines, some freelance after attaining a suitable amount of experience in the field. Some may also work with advertising agencies, modeling agencies, and stock photography agencies. They may have their own studios where they carry out all their shoots. Use some of these tips to get into this field and carve a space for yourself.

Determine whether you have the Requisite Skills
The first skill that a fashion photographer requires is the ability to look at things differently from the layman. An artistic flair or sensibility is absolutely necessary to make it in any area of photography. You must have a lot of creativity because your job is not only to showcase a subject, but showcase it in a manner that is highly desirable. This also means you need to pay attention to detail. While these are your artistic abilities, the use of high-end cameras along with photo editing software should be understood by you. You must be a focused, patient individual because getting a break in this job can take some time. Finally, in this field, you don’t work alone but with a team of other individuals who help you create a mood for your photo shoot. As such, you should be a good team player to execute these shoots with least hassles possible.

Take some Photography Classes
Some experts stress on a degree in photography, but a few courses that teach you the necessary techniques required to be a good photographer are enough. In a creative field such as this, what you need is an excellent portfolio that showcases your work rather than a strong education. The focus on education is only for you to understand the technicalities of photography and the appropriate use of the camera along with other photography equipment; and honing your skills as you progress is what will help you become a good fashion photographer.

Develop a Portfolio
Get hold of a used but good camera that will give you high image quality. This is the only piece of equipment you can start off with, and as you make some money you can invest in other photography equipment that will help you enhance the quality of your work. Now, your portfolio should not just be a mere collection of photographs. It should reflect your style, your attitude, and your personality. For instance, even if you are photographing your roommate in her/his night suit, you have to make sure that the photograph is aesthetically pleasing. Whether it is the just-out-of-bed look, or the nightwear itself, you should know how you want to focus on the picture. You may have to use props to make the picture look beautiful and experiment with other lighting materials and angles to get the best picture possible.

Picture editors from renowned fashion magazines explain that they like looking at portfolios that tell a story. The photos need not be related to each other, but should have an element that allows the photographer to portray her/his distinct style throughout. Always ensure that the subjects of your photograph know where and how the photograph is going to be used. You may use release forms for this purpose so that there are no legal issues in the future.

If you are considering applying to a particular magazine with your portfolio, ensure that you have researched the magazine well and understand exactly what they cater to. Lack of research is often where fashion photographers fail to make the cut and are left behind. If you are catering to a magazine that focuses only on shoes, ensure that you send a portfolio based on this subject. Even if you want to present something new in terms of a style that the magazine does not represent, make sure you convey this to the person you send your portfolio to. You don’t always get the chance to personally present your portfolio, so it has to be good enough to speak for itself.

Try to Get some work Published
It is not necessary that because you are aiming to be a fashion photographer your first published work should only be in a popular magazine. You may have done some photo shoots for an advertising agency, a modeling agency, or even a newly launched boutique for its catalog. If you can represent these as your work to the picture editors at the magazine you are applying to, your portfolio will be given some credibility. Also, the kind of photographs you take should complement the write-up that goes alongside to make your work appear genuine and distinct.

Get in Touch with Picture Editors at Fashion Magazines
The first step towards getting in touch with a fashion magazine is understanding whom you should communicate with within the organization. Sending them your portfolio with perhaps a short description of the kind of work you have done in the past, your general style of photography, and the kind of work you would like to do in the future, is extremely important. Don’t send original prints of your work but preferably transparencies or working photographs. Some of you tend to resort to the web and send an online presentation of your work. However, some picture editors give greater value to the traditional book portfolio and not the simplified online versions. If possible, send both out so that you ensure that the editor has received your work. Every photograph or document should have your name and number labeled on it.

Work with an Agent
Most photographers are considered in fashion magazines only when they go through someone’s recommendation. Picture editors do not have the time to go through the thousands of portfolios they are sent in a day. As such, working with an agency that is designed to connect the photographer with the employer is a great choice. It may cost you a little more, but you have a greater guarantee landing that dream job with an agent than you do when trying to get it on your own. Further, agencies don’t get you through only one magazine. They contact all places that your work may be suited to, thereby opening up a multitude of opportunities for you. Whether you directly contact a magazine or go through an agent, it is your job to present a portfolio that is worth showcasing to potential employers. In fact, with an agent the challenge is greater because you have to convince the agent first, who will then convince the potential employer. It is a lot of hard work, but that which definitely pays off. Agencies also guide you toward developing a style that is worthy of getting you into a fashion magazine of your choice.

You have to work extremely hard to get noticed and become a renowned fashion photographer, for which it is important that you have the basics in place first. The most important of these is a unique style that does not emulate that of popular professionals in the field. Once you get through, you will easily be entitled to the high salary and become a well-known name in the field. Even if you do not get into a magazine, you can continue working with modeling and advertising agencies to build up your portfolio, and then take up your dream job. The wait may be long, but the results are totally worth it. Just remember, the sooner you start, the quicker the process will be.