flash photography: questions & answers (FAQ)

flash photography questions & answers (FAQ)

Looking at some of the questions about photography that appear via Google searches, I wanted to more directly answer some of the questions. This article is a selection of questions on the topic of photography, that I decided to amalgamate into one longer article.  Read more inside...

composition for full-length portraits – step back!

composition for full-length portraits - step back instead of zooming wide

A comment in the article on a simple lighting setup for the family formal photos, asked why I recommended that a photographer should step back rather than zoom wide when photographing a group. The reason is that the perspective distortion that a wide-angle lens will give to your subject, is not  Read more inside...

making your images pop – through choice of lens

making your images pop - through choice of lens and technique

The immediate reaction when considering how you could make your photographs *pop* might be to juice it up in Photoshop. But the process should start much earlier - in camera. With a few easy techniques, we can consistently create images that jump off the page or screen. With some of the engagement photo  Read more inside...

technique – using lens flare for effect

technique - using lens flare for effect

While lens designers try to minimize lens flare, and we use lens hoods, we can often use lens flare for special effect. Shielding the front element of the lens from direct sun and other strong light sources helps giving a more contrasty image. But letting the lens flare take over in a controlled way, can really give impact. That  Read more inside...

Kate – a New York photo session

Kate - a photo shoot in New York

Kate is from Ukraine and has a deep fascination for New York. As a present, Kate's sister flew both of them out for a vacation here ... and had me photograph Kate around New York yesterday. The idea was to get a mixture of portraits of Kate and some photos of Kate in obvious New York locales. We started off in the Meat-Packing  Read more inside...

Hyper-Manual mode for Nikon & Canon

'Hyper-Manual' mode for Nikon and Canon

(subtitled: the episode where I finally learn now to use the Auto modes elegantly) In my discussion of what would be the best camera in the world, I mentioned (at length) the clear advantage that Pentax cameras have because of their Hyper-Program and Hyper-Manual modes. I explain these two modes in more detail in  Read more inside...

off-camera fill-flash in bright sunlight

shooting in bright sunlight with off-camera fill-flash

This adorable kid looked at the camera briefly because I was singing to him.  Kids are devious little creatures. They know when you're calling them and will purposely ignore you.  So you have to be crafty too in getting their attention. Of course, you have to be ready for the moment ... and shoot a lot. Sometimes  Read more inside...

using lens flare for effect

using lens flare for effect

While we often try and avoid lens flare, controlled use of lens flare can enhance the mood of a photograph. The question came up during a workshop last week - how exactly do you get lens flare. It is quite easy to get flare - shoot towards the sun, or any bright light source. Removing any filter will help in not washing out the image.  Read more inside...

using narrow depth-of-field & great bokeh

creating a background with narrow depth-of-field & great bokeh

Shooting images for the review of the Nikon 85mm f1.4G AF-S lens, it struck me how truly superb this lens is. It improves on the legendary Nikon 85mm f1.4 AF-D lens in some key areas. (For me the updated lens was an immediate upgrade.) But ultimately, you could get similarly beautiful images with  Read more inside...

shutter speed, aperture and ISO

camera settings: shutter speeds, apertures & ISO values

A presentation that I've given on several occasions, is called 'Just Give Me The F-Stop'. The presentation is based on the perception that many photographers, in trying to get to grips with flash photography, try to break it down into what they think are the understandable elements – the numerical values of  Read more inside...