5 Tips for Great Holiday Card Photos

 

Creating Memorable Images for your Holiday Cards.

Article by Jenn Gidman    Images by Kristi Bonney

Photographing and choosing the image to use for your annual holiday card can be a tough decision, but the driving force behind your final selection should be what moves you the most. What you love about your kids, for example, are the same things your friends and faraway relatives who are getting your holiday card love about them, too.

Look for personal, emotional moments for family and individual portraits.
Have a plan in mind before you start taking pictures. If you want to include more traditional posed images as options, get those shots out of the way first. Don’t force the emotions, though. Have the family stand tallest to smallest in front of a barn or brick wall, or ask Mom and Dad to stand in the middle and then have the kids gather round and start hugging. As the photographer, just go with whatever they’re doing and start taking pictures.

© Kristi Bonney

It’s also ideal to get the family outside and capture them as they interact with nature. Holiday card photos don’t have to be stuffy! Make it kind of like a “Hey, wish you were here!” postcard. A 70-200mm zoom lens is perfect for these type of shots, since you just can stand back and observe as they run through the leaves or go sledding. The point is simply to place your family in an environment they love being in (this can be a room in your house, too). Put your family’s personality into it and showcase the environment at the same time.

© Kristi Bonney

Parents often like to focus on a single child for their holiday card, a touching way to show your faraway family and friends how a child has grown over the past 12 months. It’s a great way to make a connection with your loved ones. Fill the frame with your child doing something interesting or something she likes to do every year, like reading a certain holiday book or rearranging the ornaments on the tree or trying to untangle the Christmas lights. It speaks volumes about your child’s personality, and your family and friends will get the card and say, “Oh, that’s so Jane!”

© Kristi Bonney

Try different angles to showcase family traditions.
As a photographer, I’m always seeing photos everywhere I go. During the holiday season, I’ll see little snapshots of the memories that are happening right before my eyes. Always have the camera ready, and try to capture those moments from all different angles. For instance, as we decorated Christmas cookies, I wanted to get a couple of pictures more or less straight on to capture the whole essence of the episode. In one image of my daughter, I got down a little lower to get the plate of cookies in the foreground and my daughter slightly blurred in the background. This image really gives a sense of how many cookies we were actually decorating, as well as how much fun she was having. She’s also got this really funny expression on her face that she always makes when she concentrates. It’s great to capture that, because it’s one of those little things you look back on when they’re older and remember how they were and what they did when they were younger.

© Kristi Bonney© Kristi Bonney

It’s also cool to get pictures like this from above. I love getting shots of the entire messy table while we’re making cookies or wrapping gifts. That perspective can show a lot about the person or family. For instance, I really wanted to capture all the hands that were digging in to the cookies during our decorating session. My mom was visiting, and we don’t get to see her a lot, so I thought it would be a neat shot to get up on a chair and take a picture of all of their hands from above to really show our fun, chaotic family tradition.

Capture the solemnity and respect for your holiday when the lights go low.
The holidays can also be a really reflective time, and it’s wonderful to show that in a holiday card photo as well. A menorah image, for instance, can really capture the feeling of Hanukkah and the emotional impact of the moment when you’re in front of the menorah and thinking about the holiday and your life in general. For lit menorah shots, I’d recommend people use a reflector, as well as a tripod and shutter release to keep your camera stable, and keep your lens wide open. I literally lowered my eye into the viewfinder just so I could see where my reflector was hitting, because I wanted the light to bounce off of the metal of the menorah.

© Kristi Bonney

Incorporate your holiday decor into the image.
You could take some really fun shots using materials for holiday decorations. For example, you might ask your child to blow some glitter into the air and try to capture that. For an image like this, it’s important to light the glitter from the side, so use a reflector or just position your subject so that the glitter is sidelit. You’ll need to use a faster shutter speed to capture the glitter in midair, so shoot for at least 1/500th of a second. Also, use a smaller aperture so that more of the scene and glitter are in focus.

In my family, we make paper snowflakes to decorate the house, which are fun to use in our holiday card pictures. To create a blurred snowflake effect, hang paper snowflakes at varying intervals and pull back when you shoot. You can also switch it up and try something like placing the edge of a paper snowflake on the outer edge of the lens so that it creates a cool blurred effect along the edge. Or you could use colored paper to give it a bit of a glow. The snowflakes can also be used to frame your subject, which makes for a nice composition.

© Kristi Bonney

Take the picture for your card with the end result in mind.
When you’re composing your image, think ahead about how you want the actual holiday card layout to look. For example, do you want it to look more like a landscape image or a portrait? Also consider where you might want to place the text. Either take the picture and leave room for text, or plan on framing the image on the card, with room for text on the side of the image. Finally, don’t be afraid to play around in post-processing and edit the photos. Play around with the settings if you need to to add more warmth to your image and make it a true reflection of your family.

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10 Tips For Awesome Fireworks Photos

Fireworks 4bannnerJuly Fourth is just a few days away so I thought I would share my top 10 tips for capturing the color, drama, and spectacle celebrating our nation’s independence.  To get the best photos that will stand apart from all the others you’ll see after July 5th, try some, or all, of these tips.

1. Do Some Recon

To make your fireworks images stand out you’ll need to know in advance where the launch site is located and then position your shooting location so that you can include some interesting foreground elements that will provide scale and setting.  I also like to include the western sky when possible since most shows start shortly after twilight. The long exposure required for the pyrotechnics allows some of the last remaining color in the sky to register on the sensor. Finally, arrive early and claim a spot then spread out a bit to avoid latecomers plopping down in front of you at the last second and ruining your shots.Fireworks 5

2. Use a Tripod

You’ll need to secure your camera to eliminate any movement since photographing fireworks at night requires long exposures. I usually start around 2 seconds and vary the shutter speed throughout the evening for different visual effects.

3. Use a Cable Release

Whenever you’re using a tripod for stability during long exposures, use a remote release cable. It makes no sense to set everything up and then jab the shutter to start the exposure. Additionally,  this enables you to time your exposure for the peak moment of the bursts and will be necessary later if you decide to shoot in “Bulb” mode.

4. Composition

Start shooting horizontal and with a wide-angle lens to capture landscape versions that include the foreground and the last remaining light in the west. Switch to vertical and capture the entire launch from ground to sky. In both cases remember to keep the horizon level. Finally, switch to telephoto and fill the frame with the aerial burst.

Fireworks 4

5. Pre-focus Your Lenses

After you arrive and set everything up, use the last remaining daylight to prefocus on the launch site or an object that is approximately the same distance as the fireworks display. Prefocus each lens you’ll be using during the show and then turn the Auto-Focus off. Tape down the focusing collar with gaffers tape or blue painters tape to prevent it the lens from slipping out of focus. Once the show starts, it will be very difficult to focus the lens and you may waste precious time trying to get sharp images.

Fireworks 1

6. Exposure

10 seconds @ f/11 ISO 100   Manual mode.
You’re welcome…
OK, that just a starting point, but you MUST shoot in Manual mode and set the exposure yourself. I like to use a longer shutter speed to record the light trails and then change the f/stop to adjust the brightness and maintain the color. Lock down the ISO and aperture and change the shutter speed to change the look of the fireworks bursts. Long exposures create trails, short exposures stop the movement and freeze the elements in mid air.

7. Shoot In “Bulb” Mode

Sometimes I shoot in “Bulb” mode to get very long light trails. Press the remote release button as soon as you hear or see the mortar shooting into the sky and leave it open until the burst dissipates. This will usually take several seconds and the resulting light trails are very dramatic. Since the aperture is actually controlling the exposure, you can still record vibrant colors of the burst.  To record multiple bursts during a single long exposure, I use a piece of black 6″x 6″ Foamcore to cover the lens opening between launches. It takes a bit of practice and a little luck, but the results can be spectacular.

8. Shoot Early

Be prepared to start shooting at the very first boom.  Most pyrotechnicians set off a “salute” mortar to gauge the wind direction and to signal the crowd that the show is about to begin. This will be your cue to drop the beer and brats and grab the remote release. With some luck, the wind will be blowing away from you. If not, start shooting early because the smoke from the first few mortars will render subsequent images quite hazy.

9. Shoot Often

Shoot as many photos as you can.  Don’t spend a lot of time “chimping” (Google it…) but periodically check your photos for exposure, composition, and sharpness. Just don’t overdo it and miss a great shot.

10. Experiment…Firworks 2

After you have photographed a few keepers, change it up a bit…

  • Change your shutter speed to shorten or lengthen the light trails.
  • Set your camera’s white balance to Tungsten and Fluorescent to change the color.
  • Use your zoom lens and zoom in during a long exposure on one of the burst patterns.
  • Change the focus during a “Bulb” exposure from blurry to sharp to get cone-like effects from every point of light.
  • Include water, trees, and other landmarks to create more compelling compositions.
  • Shoot with a wide angle lens and ask a friend to stand in the foreground to create a silhouette.

Fireworks 00Bonus tips:

  • Bring a flash light. Add a red filter to preserve your night vision.
  • Bring extra batteries and memory cards. It sucks to run out of power or memory just before the Grande Finale.
  • Turn off your flash. It won’t have any impact and only annoys your neighbors.
  • JPEGS are okay. RAW is better. Less noise and artifacts / More control in post-processing.
  • Turn off the Image Stabilization (IS) / Vibration Reduction (VR) function on your lens.
  • Put some reflective tape on your tripod to improve it’s visibility to others walking near your site.
  • Pack a cooler with water and snacks…

~

FenwayFlag

July Print Special
Bring in your best fireworks photos to be enlarged and printed
and we’ll take 20% off our regular print prices.
Good for all sizes printed in-house at Omega Photo through July 31st.

~

Omega Photo
210 105th Ave NE
Bellevue, WA 98004
(Located between NE 2nd & NE 4th behind Safeway)

(425) 455-2126

Omega Photo website

Follow us on:

Facebook  – “Like”  us…

Twitter  – “Follow” us…

YouTube – “Watch” us…

7 Tips for Photographing Tonight’s Lunar Eclipse

1) Determine the Time of the Eclipse
Eclipse Phase   Pacific Time  
Penumbral Eclipse begins   Apr 14 at   9:55 PM  
Partial Eclipse begins   Apr 14 at 10:59 PM  
Full Eclipse begins   Apr 15 at 12:08 AM  
Maximum Eclipse   Apr 15 at 12:46 AM  
Full Eclipse ends   Apr 15 at   1:23 AM  
Partial Eclipse ends   Apr 15 at   2:32 AM  
Penumbral Eclipse ends   Apr 15 at   3:36 AM  

2) Use a Tripod & Shutter Release.
Nothing is steadier than a good quality tripod and although your exposures will be surprisingly short, if you’re using a long lens, you’ll need to keep it as steady as possible. Remember, if you forgot your remote release, use your DSLR’s 2-second timer.

3) Use a Long Lens
200mm is good.  300mm or 400mm is better… If you have a 2x converter, use it. For most shots you’ll want to fill the frame as much as possible.

4) Shoot in Manual Mode
Most photographers overexpose their moon photos when they rely on the camera’s auto modes. The moon is actually quite bright. Think about it, it’s being illuminated by the Sun so the Sunny 16 Rule is a very close estimation. Once the eclipse starts you may have to make some adjustments.
 
The photo above was taken during the lunar eclipse on December 10, 2011
Exposure: 1.6 seconds @f/5.6  ISO 1600

5) Shoot Wide Open
In a related note, select the widest aperture so you can use the fastest shutter speed possible. Remember, the earth is rotating and the long focal length will amplify movement.

6) Compose and Re-compose
Because of the aforementioned rotation of the earth, the moon’s position in your viewfinder will constantly shift. Make the necessary adjustment to keep the moon centered.

7) Create a Multiple Exposure of the Entire Eclipse
A very cool effect, especially if you have an extra camera, is to capture a multiple exposure of the entire eclipse sequence. Mount your camera with a wide angle lens, compose the scene with some interesting foreground, and capture an image every 30 minutes. Afterwards you can blend the different phases of the eclipse into a single image in Photoshop.

If you miss your chance tonight, no worries, the next total lunar eclipse visible in the US is on October 8th.
-JMG

8 Tips for Sharper Images

8 Tips for Sharper Images

Baywood Sunset, Morro Bay CA  / ©2014 Jeffrey M. Greene

How can I get my photos sharper?” is one of the most common questions I get asked during my workshops and seminars. There are no shortcuts to getting sharp images, so here are my eight suggestions for staying in focus:

1) Use a tripod

Nothing will keep your camera and lens fixed and steadier than a good quality tripod. There are lots of choices when purchasing a tripod system and there are basically two types you can choose from:

1. Tripods that are cheap, light weight, and easy to carry. 

                or…

2. Tripods that actually work…

I’ll discuss tripods in detail in a future newsletter, but you should be prepared to spend from $500+ for a carbon fiber model with a ball-head and quick release system.

2) Use a remote shutter release. 

It makes no sense to secure you camera to a tripod only to jab the shutter with your finger. Use a remote release.

Bonus Tip: If you forgot your remote release, use your DSLR’s 2-second timer. 

 

3) Capture in Live View Mode

The old-school advice for shutter speeds that are 1/4sec and slower was to enable “mirror lock-up” to reduce vibration. With Live View, the mirror is already secured since you’re viewing directly off the sensor. Bonus Tip: Enable Silent Mode 1 or 2 on Canon DSLRs. The simulated electronic shutter action reduces the vibration even further.

4) Achieve Critical Focus

Check and double-check your focus. In Live View, magnify the view on the LCD monitor to ensure that you’re in focus. Use a small aperture (f/11, f/16, f/22) to increase depth of field. A piece of blue painters tape or gaffers tape is perfect for securing the focusing ring and prevent it from slipping. 

5) Select a Fast Shutter Speed

If you’re shooting sports, (or ignoring Rule #1 above) select a fast shutter speed to freeze the action and reduce camera shake. For sports I recommend shooting at least 1/500sec, but 1/1000sec and faster is preferred. To reduce camera shake with a hand-held cameras, select a shutter speed that is the inverse of the lens focal length. Example: if you’re using 200mm lens, your shutter speed should be 1/200sec or faster.

6) Enable Image Stabilization / Vibration Reduction

Canon and Nikon both have lenses that feature technology that compensates for slight camera-shake from hand-holding a camera. Although it’s no longer required, I still recommend turning off this feature when using a tripod.

7) Minimize Filter Usage

The more glass you add to the front of the lens, the more the image may suffer degradation. There are proper times for using filters and I only carry three in my bag; a polarizer to reduce glare, a vari-ND to cut down light, and an IR filter for infrared photography. Many photographers affix UV filters to protect their objective lens, but in that case I strongly advocate buying a top brand UV (Heliopan, Hoya, B+W).

8) Invest in “Pro” Lenses

There is huge difference in quality (and price) between consumer lenses and the Canon L series and Nikon ED/N lenses. Glass quality, coatings, and construction all contribute to higher overall quality. Most experts will advise you to invest in “glass”. Camera bodies come and go, but a good lens can last forever.

 

For the sharpest images possible, I recommend that you follow all of these tips whenever you can. It takes time, patience, and effort; but that degree of diligence is what turns a snapshot into a great shot…

 

-Jeff Greene

10 Tips For Photographing Fireworks

Fireworks 4bannnerJuly Fourth is just a few days away and we have been getting quite a few inquiries about the best way to photograph firework displays. It’s really quite simple so I thought I would share my top ten tips for capturing the color, drama, and the spectacle celebrating our nation’s independence.

1. Do Some Recon

To make your fireworks images stand out you’ll need to know in advance where the launch site is located and then position your shooting location so that you can include some interesting foreground elements that will provide scale and setting.  I also like to include the western sky when possible since most shows start shortly after twilight. The long exposure required for the pyrotechnics allows some of the last remaining color in the sky to register on the sensor. Finally, arrive early and claim a spot then spread out a bit to avoid latecomers plopping down in front of you at the last second and ruining your shots.Fireworks 5

2. Use a Tripod

You’ll need to secure your camera to eliminate any movement since photographing fireworks at night requires long exposures. I usually start around 2 seconds and vary the shutter speed throughout the evening for different visual effects.

3. Use a Cable Release

Whenever you’re using a tripod for stability during long exposures, use a remote release cable. It makes no sense to set everything up and then jab the shutter to start the exposure. Additionally,  this enables you to time your exposure for the peak moment of the bursts and will be necessary later if you decide to shoot in “Bulb” mode.

4. Composition

Start shooting horizontal and with a wide-angle lens to capture landscape versions that include the foreground and the last remaining light in the west. Switch to vertical and capture the entire launch from ground to sky. In both cases remember to keep the horizon level. Finally, switch to telephoto and fill the frame with the aerial burst.

Fireworks 4

5. Pre-focus Your Lenses

After you arrive and set everything up, use the last remaining daylight to prefocus on the launch site or an object that is approximately the same distance as the fireworks display. Prefocus each lens you’ll be using during the show and then turn the Auto-Focus off. Tape down the focusing collar with gaffers tape or blue painters tape to prevent it the lens from slipping out of focus. Once the show starts, it will be very difficult to focus the lens and you may waste precious time trying to get sharp images.

Fireworks 1

6. Exposure

10 seconds @ f/11 ISO 100   Manual mode.
You’re welcome…
OK, that just a starting point, but you MUST shoot in Manual mode and set the exposure yourself. I like to use a longer shutter speed to record the light trails and then change the f/stop to adjust the brightness and maintain the color. Lock down the ISO and aperture and change the shutter speed to change the look of the fireworks bursts. Long exposures create trails, short exposures stop the movement and freeze the elements in mid air.

7. Shoot In “Bulb” Mode

Sometimes I shoot in “Bulb” mode to get very long light trails. Press the remote release button as soon as you hear or see the mortar shooting into the sky and leave it open until the burst dissipates. This will usually take several seconds and the resulting light trails are very dramatic. Since the aperture is actually controlling the exposure, you can still record vibrant colors of the burst.  To record multiple bursts during a single long exposure, I use a piece of black 6″x 6″ Foamcore to cover the lens opening between launches. It takes a bit of practice and a little luck, but the results can be spectacular.

8. Shoot Early

Be prepared to start shooting at the very first boom.  Most pyrotechnicians set off a “salute” mortar to gauge the wind direction and to signal the crowd that the show is about to begin. This will be your cue to drop the beer and brats and grab the remote release. With some luck, the wind will be blowing away from you. If not, start shooting early because the smoke from the first few mortars will render subsequent images quite hazy.

9. Shoot Often

Shoot as many photos as you can.  Don’t spend a lot of time “chimping” (Google it…) but periodically check your photos for exposure, composition, and sharpness. Just don’t overdo it and miss a great shot.

10. Experiment…Firworks 2

After you have photographed a few keepers, change it up a bit…

  • Change your shutter speed to shorten or lengthen the light trails.
  • Set your camera’s white balance to Tungsten and Fluorescent to change the color.
  • Use your zoom lens and zoom in during a long exposure on one of the burst patterns.
  • Change the focus during a “Bulb” exposure from blurry to sharp to get cone-like effects from every point of light.
  • Include water, trees, and other landmarks to create more compelling compositions.
  • Shoot with a wide angle lens and ask a friend to stand in the foreground to create a silhouette.

Fireworks 00Bonus tips:

  • Bring a flash light. Add a red filter to preserve your night vision.
  • Bring extra batteries and memory cards. It sucks to run out of power or memory just before the Grande Finale.
  • Turn off your flash. It won’t have any impact and only annoys your neighbors.
  • JPEGS are okay. RAW is better. Less noise and artifacts / More control in post-processing.
  • Turn off the Image Stabilization (IS) / Vibration Reduction (VR) function on your lens.
  • Put some reflective tape on your tripod to improve it’s visibility to others walking near your site.
  • Pack a cooler with water and snacks…

~

FenwayFlag

July Print Special
Bring in your best fireworks photos to be enlarged and printed
and we’ll take 20% off our regular print prices.
Good for all sizes printed in-house at Omega Photo through July 31st.

~

Omega Photo
210 105th Ave NE
Bellevue, WA 98004
(Located between NE 2nd & NE 4th behind Safeway)

(425) 455-2126

Omega Photo website

Follow us on:

Facebook  – “Like”  us…

Twitter  – “Follow” us…

YouTube – “Watch” us…

Tuesday Tutorial: Sensor Cleaning

Menu 2156 600pxSensor dust.  The bane of  DSLR photographers everywhere…

The hot, dry summer months, along with increased camera use during vacation adds up to lots of dirty sensors. Considering that most photographers have likely never cleaned their sensors,  it’s a sure bet that most digital cameras in use today have a significant amount of debris on their sensors.

Not your camera, you say? Trust me, if you have never cleaned your sensor, it’s filthy – you just don’t know it.  And don’t try the “But I never take the lens off…” excuse either.  Camera systems are not hermetically sealed and all brands and models are prone to contamination when used regularly.  Ironically, the bigger the sensor the more likely it will have dust.

Since most photographers shoot  between  f/4 and f/11, they don’t realize that their sensors, actually the anti-aliasing filter protecting the sensor, is dirty.  At that range the depth of focus is relatively shallow so any dust on the sensor may not be visible. Once you start shooting at f/16 and smaller it is likely you will observe some dust spots in the areas that have consistent tonal values, ie:  the sky.

Check your DSLR sensor for dust:

Take a photo of a piece of white paper while stopped down at f/22 or smaller (do not blow out the highlights). On your camera’s LCD monitor, zoom in and review the image at 100% magnification using the scroll-wheel to inspect it. If you see some blurry dark spots, those are dust specks.

The question is: Do you send the camera in for cleaning (about $125 and two weeks down-time), or do you attempt it yourself?

Frankly, it’s not that scary or difficult and you can easily clean your own sensor with the right materials.  The first step is to determine if you  actually NEED to clean the sensor at all. Although there’s certainly some dust on it, you should only attempt a cleaning if there’s visible dust on your images.  

Dry vs. Wet Method

Visible 2157 800px  Dry 2159 800px
There are many different methods for cleaning sensors and much debate on which method is best.  Generally speaking, they’re categorized as either  “Dry” or “Wet”.  The “Dry” method uses a blower (not compressed air!) and/or and special brush. The “Wet” method uses a special solution such as methyl alcohol and a swab. The most challenging jobs will require both.

Cleaning Your Own Sensor

1) Determine if you really need to clean the sensor by reviewing a test image shot at the lens’ minimum aperture (f/22 – f/32)

2) Activate the Manual Sensor Cleaning mode on your DSLR .  Make sure the battery is fully charged before starting.

3) Use the “dry method”  first using a handheld blower “Rocket” type blower. It’s best to face the camera in a downward position while blowing off the sensor.

Blower 2153 800px

 

4) If needed, continue by using one of the many specially designed sensor-cleaning brushes. These are use micro fiber bristles that are specially treated for cleaning sensors. Do not use a small paintbrush. Those are too harsh and will scratch the sensor.

5) For stubborn dust specks still remaining, you’ll need to switch to the ‘wet” method using a swab wetted with sensor cleaning solution.  Apply a very small drop of solution to the swap and, working quickly, swipe across the sensor in a firm and smooth motion.  The motion is similar to running a squeegee across a window.

6) Discard the swab. Do not use it again. Don’t even think about it.  If the sensor requires another pass, use a fresh swab

7) Repeat as needed.

Cleaning your sensor can seem like a daunting task, but with the right tools (most available at Omega Photo), the instructions above, and some basic common sense, you can save a lot of time and money by doing it yourself.

For more information and supplies, stop by Omega Photo at our new location in downtown Bellevue.

Omega Photo
210 105th Ave NE
Bellevue, WA 98004
(Located between NE 2nd & NE 4th behind Safeway)

(425) 455-2126

Call or “click” below for information regarding our photo processing and print services, full line of cameras and lens sales, and our comprehensive passport photo service.

Omega Photo website

Follow us on:

Facebook  – “Like”  us…

Twitter  – “Follow” us…

YouTube – “Watch” us…

Tuesday Tutorial: Sunny 16 Rule

Last week a gentlemen stopped by to visit with a Nikon FM2 and had some questions. For those of you unfamiliar with this classic camera, a Nikon FM2 is a fully manual SLR film camera that was manufactured between 1984 – 2001.  Our friend’s primary concern was how to properly calculate exposure without relying on a meter.NikonF2

This is a common dilemma even with today’s fully automatic digital cameras. It is still quite possible for a camera’s metering system to be fooled by a predominately dark or bright background, or image element, which may result in a photograph that is improperly exposed.

So, regardless if we’re shooting film or digital, what is a quick method for calculating exposure?

The Sunny 16 Rule

Still relevant today with digital as it was in the past with film, it simply states:
To achieve proper exposure when shooting in bright daylight, set your lens aperture to f/16 and your shutter speed will be the inverse of your ISO.

Example:
On a sunny day with the camera set to ISO 400, the exposure would be: 1/400sec @ f/16

Or it’s equivalent…
Keep in mind that the basic rules of the Exposure Triangle still apply. This states that if you change any single exposure element (shutter speed / aperture / ISO) then you must also compensate by adjusting another element. Therefore, you can use the Sunny 16 Rule to determine a baseline exposure and then adjust accordingly to obtain the desired shutter speed or aperture that’s needed for the shot.

Example:
ISO 400,  1/400sec @ f/16  =  ISO 400, 1/800 @ f/11  =  ISO 400, 1/1600 @ f/8

In each of the examples above, the the shutter speed was increased one full stop while the aperture was opened up a full stop to compensate. The ISO remained unchanged.

Space Needle

This is all good and fine if you live in a predominately sunny climate, but up here in the drizzly Pacific Northwest that is rarely the case.  Just the same, we can use the Sunny 16 Rule as a baseline and make the following adjustments for climate:

Partly Cloudy / High Haze  – open up +1/2 stop
Overcast – open up +1 stop
Heavy Overcast – open up +2 stops
Heavy Rain – open an umbrella, you’re on your own…

If you would like this tip and would like to learn other useful photo tricks and techniques, join us next week on the Omega Photo Tulip Photography Workshop in Skagit Valley.  For additional details call 425-455-2126, or visit our new retail location in Downtown Bellevue.

Omega Photo
210 105th Ave NE
Bellevue, WA 98004
(Located between NE 2nd & NE 4th behind Safeway)

Phone:
(425) 455-2126

Hours:
Mon – Fri: 10-7
Saturday: 10-6
Sunday: 12-5

Call (425) 455-2126, or “click” below, for specials, upcoming classes, and information regarding our photo processing & print services, cameras and lens sales, and our comprehensive passport photo service.

Omega Photo website

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