Category Archives: General Photography Tip

New Year Photography Resolutions- 5 Top Tips to Get Your Photography Going

 

  1. Taking Pictures is Free

Mountain Photo

Take your camera out for a walk, feel the environment, the surroundings, and feel free to take a picture of anything. Harness your skills and master the art of photography. Just click and click and click, and don’t stop till you don’t get the feel of it.

This not only lets you feel the act of taking pictures, but rather, it also lets you experience taking pictures of a variety of things, a variety of subject matters, wherein it removes the weird feeling of having to shoot another type of subject, or another new type of photography.

Just bring your camera wherever you will go, then if you stumble on something that is worth watching, get your camera, take a picture of it, and view it, appreciate it, and see for yourself how easy it is to take a picture. It is just the same as driving a car, when you get used to it, it seems like it is already a part of your body. The same principle applies to photography. The more you take pictures, the more it becomes part of you; it becomes part of who you are, and a part of your body.

So don’t mind taking a picture or two of something out there. Just have fun, and feel free, because taking pictures is free.

  1. Learn Post Processing

Desert

Post processing may sometimes be an underrated exercise for some photographers, because they already see their pictures as perfect, wherein it doesn’t need to be edited, to be enhanced, or to undergo a series of different things just to make it more pleasing to the eyes. This is where you are wrong. Post processing is vital, because photography is not just about how you take the pictures, but also more about how you pick the best pictures, how you edit them, how you enhance them, put touches on them, and make them look more interesting to the eyes of the viewer.

Getting nice software to handle all your edits and post processing tasks is important. Try to use Lightroom, to adjust the lightings in your pictures. You can also use Photoshop to crop out backgrounds, or remove blemishes on your subject’s faces.

  1. Think about how the pictures came to be

 

This is probably one of the most forgotten things when dealing with studying photography. You needed to always keep this in mind, if you wanted to be a better photographer.

To become a better photographer is not to just know how to take pictures, and applying them in reality. Sometimes, you need to learn how to analyze and think on how the pictures that we see are taken. Pictures are just everywhere. They are in social media, in the internet, magazines, newspapers, and all sorts of day-to-day things.

When we happen to cross one, let us not just scroll down and move our eyes to another subject, but instead, let us look at it even closer, and dig deeper into it. Try to ask yourself if why these pictures are taken this way. Learn to criticize and discern if the pictures are good ones or bad ones. For example, you look at the lighting, and tell whether it is using an artificial light or a natural light, or knowing the exposure, which are its aperture, ISO, and shutter speed settings.

You see, it is just a matter of how well we know about photography, and how we can use these criticisms that we have, to make ourselves better photographers. To know the lapses and the shortcomings of how the pictures that you have seen are taken, you will then know on what to do next time, if you are to take a picture.

  1. Don’t let the equipment slow you downAerial Landscape

Remember the basics, and the fundamentals of photography. You should not be too preoccupied with the technological advancements in our world, because letting them into your selves, and letting them obliterate the true essence of photography may just ruin your career in photography.

Photography is just really about taking pictures, and that it is just that, because that is the most important thing with it. Getting to know the priorities, and to know the type of pictures that we want, as well as the event that we are going to take pictures, are important, so as not to let these equipments slow you down.

Sometimes, we bring a lot of equipments with us, such as filters, lenses, flashes, lightings, tripods, and those sorts of things. One thing is for sure and that is to just take it easy on you. Just know everything that you need to know ahead of time, and just bring what is needed. This is the secret to it. This is the secret to making the improvement process quicker.

  1. Take in information and inspiration

New Years 2016

Photography is a continuous learning process, and that the learning never stops. What makes photography as a really cool one is that it is not just about learning something, but also, it needs to gather inspiration from someone or something.

The first thing that you need to do is to open up yourself to receiving information. Subscribe to blogs, search the internet on everything that relates to photography, learn from it, read magazines about photography, and get knowledge and inspiration from it.

Just sit back, enjoy reading what you see, and have fun with what you do. The more you get yourself inclined to photography, the more likely you are to become a better photographer. Take in inspiration and you will surely see the big change in your pictures.

Conclusion

The New Year is the time where we wanted to have a refresh from the things that happened in the past year. The New Year is the time where we wanted to make ourselves better, and improve to transform ourselves into the best versions of our own selves, by making us better photographers, and to take the next step towards photographic success. Take hold of these few resolutions, for you will see the good change in you.

 

 

Fujifilm X30 Review

 

 

The Fujifilm X30 is the follow-up to the popular Fujifilm X20. It’s a high-end, retro-styled compact. Thanks to an excellent new electronic viewfinder and a good hybrid AF system, the Fujifilm X30 manages to justify its position. However, if picture quality is my only, or main, concern, it’s tough to recommend this camera over larger-sensor alternatives such as the Sony RX100 III, or the Canon G7 X.

 

Design and handling

The Fujifilm X30 offers similar styling to last year’s X20. Fuji retro metal and leather design throughout its top-end compacts and its compact system camera range, and it’s very easy on the eye. The leather is a mix of rubber and plastic, but provides the grip we’re after. Here, the front part of the hand grip is rubberised, giving way to more conventional plastic on the left side.

At 119 x 72 x 60mm and 383g, the Fujifilm is a couple of centimetres bigger in each direction and almost 100g heavier than some of its rivals. If I am after a camera that can fit in my jeans pocket rather than my coat pocket, this is not it.

However, its controls feel great. There are two control wheels on the lens, not one. One controls the zoom and is used to turn the Fujifilm X30 on and off, while the other can be customised to cover the main shooting parameters, or side attractions like filters. There’s also a physical switch to alter this on the front. Like other Fujifilm cameras there’s a satisfying tactility that comes with using the X30.

Features

Fuji didn’t mess with a good thing, and brought back the F/2-2.8 lens from the X20. Getting to know the camera’s ins and outs takes a little while if I am used to just hitting a menu button for all my normal point and shoot functions. Social shutterbugs may not want to take this heavy camera around with them everywhere, but the onboard WiFi will allow sharing snaps at a moments notice. Instead of porting files from SD card to computer, I can simply pair the camera with my smartphone using Fuji’s app, and fire off my photos to Facebook or Instagram in short order. Additionally, I could also use Fuji’s Instax Share SP-1 portable photo printer for physical photos on-demand.

Fuji also allow the change of focus modes on the fly. Though there’s an included flash stowed in the body of the X30, the option exists for me to use a speed light with the top-mounted hot shoe. I wouldn’t suggest getting anything too out-there, but using external accessories like a microphone can bump the overall quality of my video if I don’t feel like lugging a more professional piece of equipment around.

Display

While it’s likely to be overshadowed a little in favour of the headline-grabbing EVF, Fujifilm has also made big improvements to the rear display. Last year’s Fujifilm X20 used a rather disappointing 460k-dot 3-inch display. It simply is, and always was, too low-res for a high-end compact. However, this year the Fujifilm X30 clears all that up. It’s still 3-inch but has 921k dots, on par with the competition. And there is no touch sensitive display on this model.

Image quality and performance

Plenty of tweaks have been made, but the surprise – and perhaps disappointment – is that much of the Fujifilm’s core hardware is the same as last year’s entry. The sensor and image processor are the same.

In daylight, detail capture and dynamic range are good, and the Fujifilm X30 uses a colour filter that stops the need for a detail-reducing optical low pass filter while reducing moire noise. However, in more challenging situations we start to see where the falls behind the larger-sensor competition. High ISO performance just isn’t as good, with much noisier results than 1-inch sensor alternatives. Noise levels are very good until ISO 400, where luminance noise start to creep in. I recommend keeping the highest 6400 and 12800 modes for emergencies only: they are just too noisy.

I get the same photographic performance as the Fujifilm X20. For some people, that’s more than enough when considered alongside the benefits of good handling, sound performance and a great EVF. However, in a class of large sensor compacts, the Fujifilm X30 sensor just isn’t looking all that large anymore. Fujifilm has also worked wonders on the X30’s battery life. Where the Fujifilm X20 is only rated to 270 shots off a charge, this camera is up to 470 — a huge increase.

Price

At $599.99, or £479, it certainly doesn’t hurt that this camera is a good bit less expensive than some of its competitors. But, there is a few already mentioned larger-sensor alternatives at a similar price.

Conclusion

Pros: great on-body controls, fast and accurate AF and robust build.

Cons: smaller sensor than rivals, no touchscreen and lens could offer wider angle.

The Fujifilm X30 is a strong compact, but doesn’t make the image quality improvements needed to match the best big-sensor performers.

10 Reasons to Start Shooting in RAW Format

 

Shooting in RAW format may be kind of underrated for most of us because we do not really know what it is for, aside from the fact that we find it to sound weird and too technical. We are used to seeing pictures that are in JPEG, and this is the reason why we neglect using the RAW format.

To change our perspective on this, and make the most of our pictures, let us know the reasons why we should start using the RAW format in taking pictures.

  1. Higher Brightness Levels

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It is important to note that taking RAW format pictures is an option to choose, before we take pictures, and we need to set this up before the actual shooting takes place. With this, we have enough time to know if the environments which are to be taking a picture from is bright or dark enough. If there is a little amount of light on it, we can always consider taking a picture of it in RAW format.

This is because that RAW pictures record 20 times to 60 times more levels of brightness than that of a JPEG picture. With this, we have a lot control on the picture on post processing, because we can adjust and edit to more potions on brightness without a reduction of quality. Also the likelihood of producing posterization is very unlikely, because of the wider range of brightness levels. Posterization is the banding of the streaks of light that are usually seen in bright environments that have too much light on it. With RAW pictures, all of these are gone.

  1. Higher Quality Levels

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RAW lets you record and to take in all information from the data sensor because, and this is the biggest advantage and benefit that you get from RAW pictures when compared to JPEG pictures. Using this enables one to get more information from the taken picture, and with this greater information, comes more detail, which makes it boast with high quality pictures. This is because of the fact that RAW lets you process it on your own, instead of letting the camera process it. The camera is nowhere near your intelligence, this makes it high quality, because you get to do the processing. After all, all we want is to have high quality pictures.

  1. Higher Detail Levels

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The RAW format makes your pictures blossom with details that you cannot see in JPEG ones. This makes your pictures sharper and that you can have total control on reducing its noise, because RAW format lets you do this in post processing, like in programs like the Lightroom. These programs enable you to have total control, instead of just using your camera’s settings.

  1. Editing without ruining the image

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Pictures that are not in RAW are ruined by post-editing. These are ruined because when the editing is done, you replace the original picture with the newly adjusted or edited picture, thus reducing its quality. The more you adjust and do edit on it, the more its quality lessens because you alter and change the makeup of the image, making it look pixelated.

With RAW format pictures, what you are doing is just instructing steps on how the JPEG version should be changed, and that you are not replacing the original file, but just making process on editing it.

  1. Easy Balancing

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Color adjustments are important in taking pictures. In RAW formats, you can then easily edit something, just like brightening up an image or perhaps darkening it. You can also quickly change the tone, and make it look cooler or warmer. This is because that there is an allocated space for the adjustments and editing to happen, knowing that RAW pictures are bigger than normal ones. This reason sums it all up into giving you full control on it.

  1. Better Prints

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Because RAW files can be adjusted and edited in more ways possible, and that it doesn’t show signs of reduced quality, you’ll end up seeing your outputs looking finer and sharper than ever. A RAW file reduces the likelihood of grains or those pixelated things you get from other formats. Though we are more into digital photography, still nothing beats the printed out pictures. Prints look different than the digital ones, and usually it is of less quality. But with the help of RAW format, you can even make it better looking than the digital ones.

  1. Recovering Gaps

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You can recover the lost beauty of RAW format pictures. As idiomatic as it seems, this is true. This is because that you can get to change it, or perhaps use the details which are not seen in the output picture, that are captured by the image sensor. For example, if you have taken a picture which is overexposed, or perhaps underexposed, you can always edit it, without having to replace it, because you can tap unto unused information, and place it on the new picture. Therefore, you add the missing piece to the beauty of the picture, making it look more of a professional looking shot.

  1. Omnipotence

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You get to do everything all at once, because you are omnipotent, of course with the help of the RAW format pictures. With this, you can simultaneously edit the pictures all at once, because this is supported by the editing and photography programs such as Lightroom and Aperture. Though this only is applicable when editing pictures that are in RAW format, and if not then you would not be edit this all at once. This allows you to easily process multitudes of RAW pictures in just a single sweeping, making the entire workflow convenient and much easier for you.

  1. Uncompressed

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Yes, RAW formats are uncompressed, which makes it have a bigger file size than the other formats. Because it is uncompressed, it has a higher quality, because the details and the information that are captured by the image sensor are all used, and are in its original form. So here, we can see that its huge file size had an advantage. Along with it, it carries the information needed to complete the imagery. With JPEG formats, your pictures are generally changed and because the file size is shrunk, which means that the quality is also reduced with the shrinking of file size. One misconception is that we usually think of compressing as retaining the quality but in reality it is not. This is what makes RAW formats way cooler.

  1. Professionalism at its best

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If we wanted to be professional, then we should give the highest quality possible to our clients. With this, we should not settle for less, and that effort is a must. We can do this by using RAW formats, as though it requires more of your energy and time for post processing, still it is worthy to see that your efforts had reaped and that you can earn respect from it. Well, practically speaking, it just makes the most out your pictures.

Conclusion

To sum it all up, all we need is to know the benefits of shooting in RAW and how it will propel our pictures to be the best looking photographs of all time. Start shooting RAW!

How to use curves in your photography

 

 

In this video I will explain how you can use curves in the natural environment to add more depth from the foreground to the background of your images. You can access more content on how to improve your photography for free on my blog at www.stilljourneying.com/blog

Find out how you can accelerate your photography with his Home Study Course:

http://www.stilljourneying.com/home-study-course/

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