Category: techniques

Zoom bursts

By , May 29, 2010 7:54 pm

This is a technique I learned in class and have been practicing. I know, I know, I need lots more practice! Also, you would not believe how many shots I took today trying to do this. You can do this with zoom lenses that have a manual zoom ring. The trick is to zoom the lens while the shutter is open with a slow shutter speed, usually below 1/60th of a second.

Here are the steps:
1. Focus on your subject.
2. Use a slower shutter speed in either Shutter Priority or Manual Shooting mode. Shutter speeds can range from 1/60 to 1/8.
3. Click the shutter release button and twist to zoom the lens simultaneously.

You can zoom from the shortest to the longest focal length or vice-versa. Using a tripod is suggested.

Now I have to figure out what subjects are best for this technique and just keep practicing. Any suggestions are welcomed!

My settings for the car shot:
Exposure Program: Shutter Priority
Shutter Speed: 1/10 sec
Aperture Value: f/36
ISO: 200
Focal Length : 55m


By , May 29, 2010 7:46 pm

I have been practicing panning in the current class that I am taking. I do need more practice but this is the first one I got that is kind of on track! I will get better – I’m determined! Here are the steps I attempted for “panning”:

1. Tried to keep my feet planted, my arms, wrist, and hands still and pivot at the hips. (glad there is no picture available of me!)
2. Used a shutter speed of 1/15. and worked in Shutter Priority mode.
3. Pre-focused on Genesis on her bicycle.
4. Used continuous shooting mode.

Having fun with silhouettes

By , May 29, 2010 7:39 pm

I’m having fun with silhouettes – gives you a chance to be creative! Here are the steps:

1. Make sure the subject is backlit. If you are using the sun, let a tree or something else block the sun’s direct light.
2. Use “spot” metering and meter off something other than the subject. I metered off the sky.
3. Choose a strong subject that is a recognizable shape that will be interesting to look at. It should be a definite shape.
3. Get as close as you can to your subject and frame your image so that the brightest light sets off the subject.
4. Make sure your flash is turned off.
5. Try different angles and if you have more than one shape, try to keep them separated.
6. Have fun!

Weaving through the white balance

By , January 23, 2010 12:47 pm

Learning about white balance has definitely helped improve my photographs. My shots are less blue and the overall casts are less cold looking. One technique I discovered lets you preview different white balance settings using Live View. Here are the steps:

  1. Press the Live View Button.
  2. Press the SET button. You will see a small menu that appears on the left side of the screen.
  3. Use the up and down arrows to choose the white balance menu item.
  4. Turn the Main dial to navigate through the different white balance settings.

The display on the T1i may not be totally color accurate, but it will let you note the differences between the white balance settings.

One thing you do have to remember though is to change the white balance when the light changes. It is really hard to correct a bad whilte balance later in a software image editing program so try to get the white balance correct from the start.

I’ve been learning a lot about white balance and trying different things out. More practice is needed on these last two posts but I have other things yet to try. I’ll be back in a bit with more!

One last thing – even though there is so much to learn it is a lot of fun to learn and I’m OK with my slow pace now. I’m immersed in a web of information, terms and confusion still reigns but I’m weaving my way through it.  I’m learning a lot by just taking in the shots other people are making on the Flickr: 2010/365 photo group.  There are some amazing shots to view – hope to get there one day in the future!!

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