For those who want to improve their photography skills…and that includes those of you who use compact cameras….learn to use your Exposure Compensation Dial. Get out your camera manual to find out which dial it is and then watch this excellent video tutorial explaining how to use it to get better photos.
I absolutely love the beautiful and artsy quality of shallow depth of field (DOF) that results from shooting wide open. This is especially true of lenses that can open up to f/2.8 or wider . Don’t know what DOF means? Click here
Here are two shots of Lacepod at different apertures.
Canon 100mm Macro at f/13
Canon 100mm Macro at f/2.8
FYI to compact camera users: Although most compact cameras have wider apertures available (like f2.8), it will not give the same results as an SLR. This is because the lenses of compact cameras have very short focal lengths which means their aperture openings are significantly smaller than on an SLR. Small aperture openings result in sharper images so images are going to have much more depth of field (more in focus) than the SLR equivalent.
We were rained out for sunrise so we decided to enjoy breakfast and then to head to a classroom (thanks Carol!) where Jennifer Wu shared her favorite photography and photoshop tips with us until about 4pm.
It is 65 degrees at the moment and soft gentle rain has been falling steadily all night. Perfect rain because it’s not hard enough to make the washes flow but just the right kind to give the ground a good soaking.
As I was enjoying the rain and thinking about posting a photo, I saw the reflection of the Ocotillo in the slate tiles and then the little ripples and the splashes. Here’s what I saw:
One of the very first things I learned as a photographer but something I don’t always do, is to spend LOTS of time with a subject that interests you. Try to shoot it from every possible angle, with every focal length (wide to macro) because as you’re doing that, you are bound to be inspired to see all the possibilities! A friend of mine, Carol Leigh, teaches an online photo class called Parts is Parts, in which she asks you to choose one subject and then shoot 10 photos of it. The assignment is that they must all be different. What a great way to practice “seeing”! I highly recommend any of Carol’s classes. They are 6 weeks long, inexpensive and you can participate no matter where you are. All you need is a camera and access to a computer.
I shot the above photos in my yard this morning. Our neighborhood borders the Preserve so you should be finding these on the trails now! The close-ups show two tips. 1. Fill your frame. 2. Use a large aperture. Below is an excellent video regarding photographing flowers! Her presentation is useful for both compact and SLR camera users.