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Exposure compensation #photography

I find I learn something new about photography all the time. Exposure is the amount of light that hits the sensor on a digital camera. It was the amount of light hitting the film on the old film cameras. To increase the exposure, you can slow the shutter speed, open the aperture up or increase the ISO. Exposure compensation allows you to easily adjust the exposure a little while shooting.


Celebrate your creativity #challenge

The 64 million artists weekly challenge for this week is to celebrate. “We challenge you to find your moments of celebration through-out the week – the big, the small and the in-between”.  If you’re creative, then you do celebrate your creations all the time. You might just read that poem and smile or look at and consider your latest artwork and take a moment of pleasure from knowing you did well! You can celebrate your creativity with moment after moment of satisfaction.

celebrate your creativity


Winter low-light #photography

It is officially late autumn but we have winter weather and dark skies. How can we take photographs in such poor light? This is when a DSLR with its larger sensor proves to be better than a bridge camera. The pupil of the eye dilates when it’s darker letting in more light and so we can’t judge how much light we have, accurately.  You can use your camera as a light meter and get a better idea of how much light you have. I set my camera on shutter priority and 1/100 of a second. If the camera sets the aperture wide then I know I don’t have enough light and can increase my ISO. Winter low-light can give us dark misty shots or we can set the camera to use all the available light. When we do snowy scenes there is usually lots of light reflected by the snow.

winter low-light


Developing my photography #photography

I started learning about photography a relatively short time ago. I think it was 2007 when I bought a Fujifilm bridge camera and it’s only been five years since I began using a DSLR. The sensor on the bridge camera was much smaller than on my Nikon D3200 and the narrowest aperture was f/8. I can now shoot in lower light and get more professional pictures. My aim is to upgrade to a full frame camera with a sensor that is 50% wider. Developing my photography this month is all about better flash photography.

Developing my photography


Shooting an event #photography

On Sunday, I photographed the Remembrance Day parade. When you’re shooting an event like that and it’s cold and damp with poor light, you can’t expect great shots. The sky was fairly clear except where the sun was and the moving cloud meant bright sunlight and then the cloud would block out the sun. I would have preferred a cloudy sky. When I’m shooting an event, I usually use my 18 – 105 lens but for this event chose the 55 – 300 to give me some reach.

shooting an event l


Understanding shallow depth of field #photography

One of the more difficult concepts to understand in photography is the depth of field. Understand that and you’ve more or less cracked it! Most people know that the shutter button on the camera is pressed part-way down to focus on your subject and then gently pressed all the way down to take the picture. Your focus points decide what will be in focus and so be sure to know what your subject is and get your focus points on your subject. For this shot, I used a wide aperture, in fact, I shot wide open for a shallow depth of field.

shot with a shallow depth of field


Entry-level DSLR ideas #photography

Last week I wrote about the settings in a Nikon D3200 which is an entry-level DSLR. A full frame camera with a 35mm sensor is considered a professional camera but full frame cameras haven’t been out that long. Previously cameras like the D3200 would have been considered professional cameras. The cropped sensor is 2/3 of the width of a full frame sensor but still much larger than on a bridge camera or phone so can capture more light.



The Nikon D3200 #photography

A member of the Black Country toggers group has bought a Nikon D3200 like mine and so I’ll devote today’s post to the Nikon D3200. Like most cameras, it has a dial on the top where you can choose ‘scene modes’ such as portrait or landscape. Most serious photographers like to use manual settings and have more control over the camera. Those settings are M for manual, A for aperture priority, S for shutter speed priority and P for programmed auto.


Images from the past #ramble #Wednesbury

Yes, it’s Sunday morning and so I’ll share my thoughts with you once again. I’m late, I used to write this as my Sunday lunch was cooking and then it got earlier and earlier and now I’m back to writing at near lunchtime. I have been remembering a little of my earlier life the past few days doing the History of Wednesbury. I also met a friend from my school days who bought 50 sets of art cards to sell at the rugby club. Yes, I’m still trying to make my little art project a success. I’m trying to work out which images from the past people most identify with.

images from the past


Gaining experience #photography

I am interested in all types of photography and enjoy experimenting because that’s how you learn new things. I went out on Sunday despite the rain and did some landscape photography but also tried some shots that were a little different. I’ve been thinking about photographing a hi-rise block of flats for some time and so I went to find one. It is all about trying new things and gaining experience.

Photography - gaining experience


Experiments in photography #art #Wednesburyonline

From the first time I edited my photos, I have experimented with pictures and my experiments in photography continue. I have changed colours, tried sepia and added a border to my photos. I’ve had pictures printed on canvas and on foam board and my latest project was to have 2000 art cards printed that I have to try to sell. I’m now looking at combining images for my next art card.

experiments in photography


Art cards and recognition #art #photography

It’s Sunday morning and so once again I’ll let you into the labyrinth of neurons that is my mind and share my thoughts with you.  Yes, I’m still trying to sell my art cards, the initial enthusiasm from people seems to have waned now I have actually gone to the expense of having them printed. They are a limited edition print and so could be quite collectable in the future and they won’t self-destruct like Banksy’s picture.



Getting your content out there #photography #writing

Whether you’re into blogging, social media or printed media. You have to create content for the general public. I use Windows Live Writer to write my posts for my blog, I use Outlook for emails and I use MS Word to write everything else. That is just the words but I also produce pictures. My Nikon D3200 produces quite good photos and I use Windows Live gallery to edit them and often use PhotoScape too. Resizing and adding the copyright notice to photographs is done with Fotosizer. The way I create content is fast and simple.

Getting your content out there


Social media publicity #ramble #photography

It is Sunday morning and so, as usual, I’ll share my thoughts with you, such as they are. This week I had my hedge trimmed ready for the winter and next week I might run the lawnmower over the lawn. Autumn is here and the weather is changing quite quickly. On the 28th of October, the clocks will go back an hour so the nights will get dark earlier. I’m not looking forward to winter, last winter was a cruel one. I hope this winter will be milder. A historic local pub, Ye Olde Leathern Bottel reopened this week and I hope the new licensee does well. I designed a web banner to publicise it and posted it up on Facebook on our history page. I hope that helped. The effect of social media publicity isn’t always immediate.

leathern bottel social media banner


Reflections on the water #photography

At the weekend it was the Tipton Canal and Community Festival. Saturday was cold and wet and I wasn’t feeling too good so I waited until Sunday and went to photograph the narrowboats and visitors. I met up with Chris and Jan from the Caravan Gallery. They were taking photos for their Sandwell Pride of Place Project which will be an integral part of the Blast photo Festival in 2019. You tend to get a lot of reflections on the water when you photograph canals and that can make the water look like a white sheet. This year I decided to use a polarizing filter. It is a bit like taking photos through Polaroid sunglasses so it makes the image darker but cuts down on glare and the reflections on the water.

reflections on the water


Developing your style #photography

Most people have heard of David Bailey who shot to fame as a photographer after he took fashion photos of Jean Shrimpton in New York for Vogue. He refused to conform to the accepted norm for fashion photography. Photographers with their own style will always be more successful. Martin Parr, not known for fashion photography produced something different too and has recently been doing a commission for Gucci. If you Google fine art photography you will see almost every image is in the same style. Flick through a fashion magazine and you’ll see the same boring old story, image after image, with the originality photo-shopped out of them. Developing your style can be done with any camera, you don’t need an expensive DSLR. David Bailey shunned the expensive cameras and used his own 35mm for the New York shoot.

developing your style


Medieval mayhem #ramble #photography

Yes, it’s Sunday morning and so once again I’ll share my thoughts with you. I wrote about the saga relating to having a postcard for Wednesbury printed, yesterday. Since then I’ve got a couple of orders! This could work! I’ll need a lot more orders, though, but at least I can think about it seriously. I realised last night that my pictures were widescreen and although you can have wide postcards printed, it costs extra. I found the original high-definition pictures and made copies and cropped them to size. I’ll convert them to CMYK one of the days and see what they look like. I think they’ll be OK. Anyway, I went to photograph the medieval mayhem at West Bromwich Manor house yesterday.



The postcard saga #life

Yes, the postcard saga has taken another step towards the ridiculous. My little competition to see which picture was the best one for a postcard was featured in the Sandwell Chronicle. It made page two, no less. I didn’t get the credit, though!

pick a postcard

Social media stories #photography

I have tried to combine poetry with photography to tell stories on social media but I suppose I’m not a great poet. I like quite amusing poems that tell a funny story. The picture itself can tell a story without any words and just a few words as a caption can fire the imagination and provokes a story. The story is changing now as autumn approaches. I shot this picture on Sunday and it might provoke a story in your mind.

Pictures can tell stories


How to take better pictures #photography

I have a DSLR now but back in 2008, just 10 years ago, I started with a Fuji bridge camera with a much smaller sensor which wasn’t so good in low-light. It was really hard to set the aperture, ISO and white balance and so I mostly used scene settings either the one for landscape or the one for portrait. The former gave me a narrow aperture and the latter a wide aperture. Then I realised something, I could set the camera on the landscape setting and sometimes the camera would shoot at f/8 and sometimes wider. It depended on where in the frame I was focusing. If I focused quite close then I got better pictures at a wider aperture. In this shot, I wanted the whole building in focus but I focused on the sign for the hospital which was so new they were still building it.


Strike a chord #photography

If you’re trying to improve your photography and want to achieve a high proficiency you might like to look at the work of some famous photographers. I don’t find the photos in photography magazines very inspiring because they tend to be photoshopped to what might appear perfection but it is the imperfections that make many photos interesting. I follow a few photographers on Instagram and try to differentiate which shots are engaging and which aren’t. Some shots just strike a chord and besides being technically good, they say something to me. I like a few photos recently from Martin Parr that were about the English seaside. They strike a chord, while his photos of Gucci watches seemed pretentious.

strike a chord


Why use a DSLR? #photography

Virtually all professional photographers use a DSLR and you can get a used one for less than £200. Why is the DSLR considered the best type of camera? It really comes down to control of the camera. You can set a DSLR manually and choose settings for a fast shutter speed and simply freeze the action. A fast shutter speed eliminates blur from all sorts of movement including camera shake and vibration.

YMCA - shot with a DSLR


Using the focus points photography

I’m not convinced that having lots of focus points helps you get the whole image in focus. I sometimes use just one focus point when I’m doing landscape photography to try to get a distant object in sharper focus. When I’m taking a shot of a group of people then the focus points are really useful. On my camera, they are tiny red dots and if I have all 11 visible then that is a good shot but more often than not, I have the ones to the right and left of the shot and that is good enough. If the focus points are even across the shot then it shows the camera isn’t tilted in one direction of the other. It also helps me to keep the camera level.


The psychology of images

They say a picture is worth a thousand words and certainly you can create an impression with an image. Images are used to send out messages to the general public all the time by PR companies and the media. The message can be very subtle or it can be one of high impact. Words accompanying the image also add to the message. The psychology of images is a subject every photographer should be interested in.

psychology of images


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