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Lonely Spot

When you find yourself in a lonely spot; sometimes you want some comfort. This photo is a reminder to endure, even in lonely times. Seems everyone feels lonely sometimes, and you can purchase this print from my website here: Lonely Spot.

Lonely Spot

Because life is changing pretty fast these days, it’s important to keep a positive outlook on life. Times are tough, it’s going to require having some self reliance and fortitude.

Just remember to keep calm and carry on. Purchase this print from my website today for shipping to your front door. Because, maybe with something pretty to look at, you won’t feel so lonely.

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Time To Tighten It Up

I want to highlight a photograph on my website by sharing it on my blog. This is a particularly good photo. Its an effort to make the jump from where I am, to where I want to be.

I think its important to remember that where we are, isn’t the final destination. Therefore keep that in mind when you’re looking at where we are today.

Tighten It Up

You can buy this photo from my website using this link: Time To Tighten It up. Because if you need a photo reminder, this is it!

Its time to make life better. We can send people to space, its not too much to ask for ones needs to be met. Because if we start really thinking, anything could be possible.

Note to Self photography Start

Focus tip for Digital Photography

Macro and Still life Focus Tip

When doing still life or macro photography getting the image in great focus is crucial. I personally struggled with getting shots in good focus for years. I looked at my work and thought, “This isn’t in great focus.” This focus tip will change your photography for the better.

After working for years trying different approaches with auto focus, manual focus, and AI focus, I was very disappointed with the results I was getting. This wasn’t from a technical reason such as shutter speed or hand held photography. It was with the camera actually getting the shot in best focus.

Maybe you know what I’m talking about. Sometimes the images just don’t have the quality that as photographers we are looking for. Then you start to turn to photoshop sharpening and post editing technics.

However I want to tell you there is hope. This may be well known, but I want to bring some attention to the simple solution. If your using a modern DSLR camera, here is a tip that will change your life. It works best  when shooting on tripod and doing macro or still life.

The solution – In Focus Photos

I found this one day when trying to get a shot in better focus. Set your camera to manual focus. Then choose live shooting mode in your camera’s view finder. See if your camera has the ability to magnify the live image on-screen and set the magnification to the max. You will have to experiment with your camera’s focus point and where you want to focus for each shot. Try it out, it works!

Now focus your shot using manual focus and you are all set. With this you should be able to get great focus shots of still life and macro photography when using a tripod. You will want to make sure that the shutter speed and aperture are set best for the shot you want. Take those things into consideration when setting up your shot.

I hope this tip will improve your photography and make great in focus shots that will be so sharp that your Pro friends will notice. Well keep trying, post production sharpening really helps, however with this secret trick, you will find great in focus shots that will stand out.

Have fun with your photography and get those shots extra sharp!

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Creative Lifestyles in Artists Hopes

My Hopes For a Creative Life

I have dreamed of being a creative and productive artist for a long time. Although I will not go into how many hours have been wasted along the way to getting to here, I will say that it’s time to make the changes that will complete the process.

After giving some thought to what I would like to be doing with my life, I have reached a few important conclusions. To be living the life of my dreams, this is where I would like to start.

Creative Schedule:

Would include all the high level functions of reading and writing for a daily life, and include making at least three blog posts per week.

I feel to be reaching my goal it’s also very important to be doing at least one photoshoot that includes other people at least once a week. These photoshoots should include at least three concepts and be carefully planned in advance as to costume and hair and makeup. I would like to experiment with different lighting conditions and techniques.

I think that while working on the above items for each week, that I should also be working on writing at least one book every year that will complete the years work that reflects my growth and development.

Creative Challenges Are Good

So doing this all the while maintaining everything else should be possible for me. It is possible. It can be done. A lot of people are doing a lot more. There is no reason I shouldn’t be able to do this. It would be fun and could really be worth my time and effort. To make things for fun and being creative.

How can you challenge yourself creatively and grow emotionally, mentally, and spiritually? Is there something that you could do that would add to your enjoyment of life and learning? Many years ago I set the goal of writing a million words. I thought at the time, “That is impossible, it will never happen.”

Now about four million words later and only seven years later, I have done that a few times over. Set your goals far from reach. Start working on them, and smash the shit out of them. Just do it. Do the best you can with what you have and never look back.


Skill: Understanding RGB Color Profiles!

Learning About Color Profiles

One of the best things to learn the easy way is color profiles. If you have to learn this the hard way, you won’t be happy. Not at first anyways.

In Photoshop and some mid to high end cameras, there are different color profiles. So what’s the problem? Well depending upon how your going to use those images, you will have to convert them to the right color profile. If you want to get good results.

If you have ever had a print made and it just doesn’t look right, the problem isn’t your eyes or that you didn’t take a good image. The problem could be that the color profile is wrong for what you want to use it for.

There are standard color profiles that are most commonly accepted, one of these is the sRGB profile. Most people will never have to deal with this,   However if you have ever had to find out the hard way you know what I’m talking about.

Working with RGB Color Profiles

So which color space do you work in? If you want to do high end work and have the best colors possible, your likely working in Adobe or ProPhoto. The color space matters with your camera. The problem is that when you try to make a print of the image the colors don’t match and don’t look right.

This is because the color profile your using doesn’t match the output device color profile. Sometimes you have to contact the photo finisher to find out what will work with their system, but the standard is sRGB.

So what do I do? Well you want the photograph to be in the best color space possible right? Then you have to never convert your original photograph to a lower color space image and always save a copy of the image with the fewer colors of sRGB for displaying on screens or having prints made from digital photographs.

I have found that using Adobe Lightroom and the export function to be very useful. It will work for preserving the original image and converting the new image to .jpg and the right color space. This option is in the export dialog box in Lightroom. See Image:

For a really technical description of color profiles and there different uses and how to use them, see this link: Understanding Color Space .

Once you understand the basics it gets much easier to deal with!! Don’t forget to always properly convert your images to the right color space!!

Motivations photography

Value: A Photo’s Worth

Your Photography…

Don’t judge how good your photos are by the number of views they get or the number of favorites a photo may have. The idea is that you don’t get so wrapped up in getting views that you forget your passion and art.

It’s true, it’s nice to be noticed and recognized for your work, but don’t place a pictures value on how many people like it or see it. Maybe you haven’t been discovered yet?

The important thing is to keep shooting and keep making new work that is creative and inspiring. If you focus on your work, the number of views and favorites will take care of themselves.

Sure you should take steps to make sure people see your work, but don’t lose sight of what’s really important. The important things is creating and sharing your work. If you really want to be creative find ways to make your photographs make other people’s lives better.

Process From Feedback

If anything always try to get feedback from people about what you could be doing better or where your weak points are. Focus on that and turn a deaf ear to flattery and praise that is in excess. Think about why your really doing your work and why you want to continue, find your why and your passion will fuel you towards doing great work. Just don’t give up. Everyone has some setbacks and failures. Learn from them, grow from them; they say time and patience are two of the greatest warriors.

Don’t lose sight of what really matters, keep creating because you want to. Keep going because you have passion for what your doing. Keep things in the correct perspective and do what you love. If your doing the best you can be, then that is all that matters.

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Good photography is simply the correct measurement of light. There are three ways light is measured by, the ISO, the f-stop, and the shutter speed. Each of these three pieces must be correctly understood to get the best results. If you don’t understand this article, please see the links for better explanations of how each of these functions work.

The first thing to understand is the ISO, this is how we measure the sensitivity to light. Whether it’s film or digital the sensitivity to light is measured by a number, these numbers span from 25 to more than 8000. The lower the number the less sensitive to light, the higher numbers are more sensitive to light.

What does this mean? Simply put an ISO of 100 is about normal for daylight photography, while giving good quality images. The higher the ISO the more noise or film grain will be visible. If your working in low light you may need a higher ISO to get the shot. Most digital cameras do not go lower than 100 ISO, but some will go much higher.

Here are the most common film ISO speeds: 25, 50, 100, 200, 400, 800, 1600, 3200, 6400, 12800. These are in one stop increments, notice that the numbers double every stop? That’s normal one stop increments. There are also half stop and one third stop increments too, you may see these settings with some digital cameras. Just remember that the higher the number the more sensitive to light and the noise increases too.

The second thing to understand is the f-stop. This controls how much light will be exposed to the film or sensor. Note this only controls how much light will be visible, the shutter speed controls how long the light is seen. The f-stop works in the lens, you can sometimes see it when you look into the lens and press the shutter release button, it opens and closes depending upon what setting you use. Wide open the f-stop may be somewhere as big as f2.8 or as small as f32, it depends upon what your lens can do; you may want to see what settings are available on your camera.

Some common f-stops are as follows going from more light to less light: f2.8, f4.0, f5.6, f8.0, f11, f16, f22, f32. These are full stop increments and there are half stops between each of these numbers. Sometimes half or one third stops are useful to get a more accurate exposure. Remember correct exposure is how accurately we measure the light, more accurate we measure the light the better the quality. The f-stop also controls the depth of field which I will talk about in another post.

The third part of understanding exposure is how long the film or sensor is exposed to light. This is called the shutter speed. Shutter speeds are set by the camera most of the time, values range from a second or more to fractions of a second. Going from slow shutter speeds to fast shutter speeds, common shutter speeds look like this: 2, 4, 8, 15, 30, 60, 125, 250, 500, 1000, 2000, 4000. Remember there are half stops and one third stops between these numbers to help more accurately measure the light.

Fast shutter speeds stop motion, while slow shutter speeds will cause motion to blur or camera shake that will both cause blurry photographs. If your photographing a fast moving subject you want a shutter speed fast enough to capture the action. For still life you may want a slow shutter speed while the camera is on a tripod, with a small f-stop to get the best depth of field possible.

Measure your light carefully and your results will be best. Understand how your camera measures light and you will be a master in no time.

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Depth Of Field

After thinking carefully about what makes a picture stand out, after being competent to get the right exposure and focus, the most important thing is the depth of field. This will make or break your photographs.

If you study the photographs that are in print, you will find that the best photos are often the one that have more depth of field in the photograph and have been carefully planned to be sharp from foreground to background. What will always ruin your day is images that are only sharp in the middle. It leaves a feeling that you don’t see when looking at objects in real life. Think about how you see objects in real life, that is what makes photographs go from being just ok to great.

Think carefully about your f-stop, even if you have to bump the iso up, you should be shooting at f22 or smaller. The more depth of field you can squeeze into an image, the better it’s going to turn out. Look at the photographs that stand out, look at what they have in common. I think if you study them you will see that DOF is vital to your success. If in doubt try taking a few and experiment with it, it might take two minutes more of your time, but it will be worth the effort.

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The Joy Of Photography:

After twenty-five years of experience in photography, even though there have been many difficulties and learning curves, I seem to have made it through to a milestone.

I have learned to find joy in the process that comes from a mix of both creative and technical skills. The creative parts of photography are the most challenging, simply to keep coming up with new ideas is much more difficult than learning the technical ropes of the trade.

The important thing is to keep the right attitude about it. A creative person that can teach themselves anything, has more opportunity, because they are always looking at it from a fresh perspective.

It’s important to understand both the technical and creative sides to photography, just remember that the technical parts are only there to make the creative dreams come true. Once you start to learn the technical and have it mastered, focus on the creative side of your art. The rewards are worth it.

When you find the right balance between creative and technical in your photography, then the impossible starts to happen.

Wish I could take my images to the next level and make something wonderful. Stay tuned to see what I do next.

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Color Photographs

As you progress in your experience with photography, one of the things you need to think about is color temperature. You have probably seen the setting on your camera that says: “AWB” this stands for Auto White Balance. Which means that the camera will try to set the color temperature for you. This is fine under some circumstances, but not great if your shooting in the shade or with studio lighting, using a flash, or mixed lighting.

In black and white you don’t have to worry about the color temperature because it doesn’t often make a difference. If your working with color it makes a big difference. If your taking more than just a few photos, having the color balance set correctly will save you a lot of time in Photoshop. One way to get the right color balance is to use a white card in the first image then correct the white balance in photoshop and save the setting. Then apply the setting to the other images that were taken in the same session. I can tell you a way that is better.

Set your camera up, use a white card and expose the first image. Be sure to get the exposure right and just where you want it. Load the first image into Lightroom and choose the develop menu. Select the eye drop tool and set the white balance from the white card in your properly exposed image. See the color temperature on the right side? Write that number down, then set the white balance in your camera to that same number. Then every image you expose under this condition will be exposed with the right setting without having to correct a lot in photoshop.

When your finished with your photo shoot, be sure to set the white balance back to “AWB” so it’s ready to go for your next shoot.

The color temperature in Lightroom shows that you have blues on the left of the slider and more yellow on the right of the slider. Your job is to find the right color temperature that looks most natural for your image. Too much blue and it looks cold and unwelcome, especially photographs of people need to be warmer in tone unless your trying to make them look like a villain.

Learn how to see the color temperature in Lightroom and Photoshop, this will add to your abilities in color photography and will enhance the look of your photographs.