Friday, April 6, 2012

Easy Easter Images

Easter is a special time for many families--one that includes elaborate egg hunts, community gatherings and fellowship. It’s also a wonderful photo opportunity. We’d like to help you make the most of this special holiday with a few tips for creating eye-catching images.

Play with Patterns
Easter baskets, lovely spring dresses and painted eggs can all combine to provide popping patterns to photograph. For example, a close-up of a child holding a brightly colored egg against her dress can create a playful and visually appealing image. Consider pairing bright patterns with a soft background or texture to see the end result.

Celebrate Color
This holiday is filled with colorful clothing, decorations, and, with a bit of rain, some beautiful green grass to use as a background. Consider marrying bright colors with the natural background of grass, trees or flowers. Experiment with perspective and shoot a bit tighter on the subject than normal as this helps the colors take center stage and command the eye’s attention.

Capture Connections
This is a wonderful opportunity not only for posed family photos and Easter egg hunt snapshots but also for capturing those candid moments between loved ones. Become an observer of the festivities, pull out your best zoom lens and blend into the scenery for a bit. Photograph conversations between siblings, children checking their egg hunt treasures or a good laugh shared between spouses. These connections touch us during the moment, but photographing them will allow them to live on long after the day ends. You can also choose some of your favorites, print and frame them and present them as gifts for future birthday or holiday events.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Understanding F/Stop Calculations

If you’re someone who wouldn’t know the difference between an f/stop and a bus stop, worry not, because it is a concept that stumps many starting shutterbugs. The reality of photography is that it includes a fair amount of mathematics, an aspect that can be both interesting and confusing. Let us help clarify the concept so you can better enjoy playing with your DSLR by getting out of auto mode.

The f/stop is known by several other names including the relative aperture, the f/number and the focal ratio (f/ratio). Essentially, the number is calculated by dividing the focal length of the lens by the aperture diameter. Adjusting by one full stop will either allow in half or double the amount of light.

The standard scale of full f/stop range is as follows:

1.4, 2, 2.8, 4, 5.6, 8, 11, 16, 22

The f/1.4 setting lets in the most amount of light and f/22 lets in the least amount of light.

The focal length of a lens is defined in millimeters. For example, if you’re using a 50mm lens, f/2 is designating that the diameter of the aperture is 25mm, (50 divided by 25 equals 2.)

Understanding the basic numeric structure of f-stops will further strengthen your ability to make adjustments based upon available light. Take your camera outside and start playing with this concept and you’ll quickly see the relationship between the numbers and the results you record.