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Useful Photography Tip

concert - julius motal-2

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New cameras often bring with them a bevy of new features that can at times feel overwhelming. Whether it’s swanky built-in Wi-Fi or split-image focusing, there’s a great deal to explore, but the core functions are often the same across cameras. Out of the box, that new camera of yours is set to save images as JPEGs.

If you’re serious about your photography, mosey on over to the menu, and set your camera to save your images as RAW files. For those who don’t know, RAW images have loads more information than JPEGs, and more can be done with them in Lightroom and other editing platforms. JPEGs don’t have that much latitude in post-production. With a RAW file, you can save an image that would otherwise be thrown in the trash. So, setting your camera to RAW straight out-of-the-box means the difference between an image that can be salvaged and one that can’t.

Granted, you’ll have less shots to work with, but you can always buy another SD card.


Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Sony hvlf60m flash uses (1 of 5)ISO 16001-40 sec at f - 9.0

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If you’re starting out as a photographer shooting events or portraits, one of the biggest rookie mistakes made (along with using a Gary Fong Lightsphere incorrectly) is simply pointing a flash directly up towards the ceiling and expecting the best and most perfect results. The problem with this method is that you tend to create unflattering shadows (and there is a difference between flattering and unflattering shadows) on a person’s face and therefore make them look not their best. While many flashes give you a small bounce card, it usually isn’t enough to fill in those shadows either.

In the situation where you don’t have something like a large Rogue FlashBender, we recommend this: point the flash up towards the ceiling and behind you just a tad–then crank up the flash output around 2/3-1 stop brighter. Based on the way that light and flashes work, the ceiling is used to become a main light source as it is illuminated by the flash output. But if you put the light source right above someone’s face, you’ll create shadows underneath. However, if you move it around to above and slightly in front of them, the light will seem a tad more natural.

julius motal the phoblographer street photo tips 07

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The number of images available online is growing by the day, and if you’re looking for certain images, it can be a bit of a tall order to separate the wheat from the chaff. If you want your images to be seen, you need to do more than just upload them and share them on Facebook, Twitter, and the like. What they really need is to be properly tagged in the metadata along with the naming structure.

Tagging your images may seem like a bit of a chore, but it helps with broadening your reach. It certainly felt like a chore for me when I started putting my images online about five years ago, but I soon learned that tags are a great boon when you want your images to be found.

Consider the image above taken outside the Strand in New York City. Some of the obvious tags would include: books, literature, nyc, and strand. Perhaps less obvious is to put all the gear you used to make the image. In this case, the gear tags are: fujifilm, xe2, fujinon, and 35mm f1.4. Then consider environmental elements and aspects of image quality: winter, snow, street, portrait and bokeh.

If your images are properly tagged, someone looking for a very specific image could contact you about purchasing or publishing it.


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Upon chatting with a couple of friends in the industry, a lot of us seem to have the same opinion about colleges and our college days. For what it’s worth, if you’re a college student, you should know that teachers don’t do enough to prepare you for the real world. You can only simulate so much of it in a classroom. A classroom and college will never teach you how to navigate office politics, networking like a pro, not being shy at an event where everyone is better dressed than you are and also chatting it up with no problems, and the art of the pitch–which in and of itself is a delicate balance between selling yourself and not making you sound desperate.

Sure, you’ll know how to press a shutter button and you may have a good portfolio of work, but how are you going to get people to notice you and hire you? How much do you know about social media marketing? What about price negotiations?

So what’s the solution? Go do internships. And we’re not just talking about any internship, do one in your field of choice. Then make mistakes, learn, and better yourself. For what it’s worth, you’ll learn a heck of a lot more from just doing internship after internship instead of just taking a ton of classes and doing a masters is worth. And if you’re aggressive and don’t slack off, you’ll have a better hold of your work life when you finally get diploma.



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Not all event photography can be done alone. Some times the scope of an event can span days as well as different locations. I recently had to do a week long job like this and I learned a lot. Group work requires planing , and the ability to adapt. It’s not just about camera gear it about people and interpersonal skills as well.

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As a photographer it can be hard to track your progress. If you are starting out in photography, or branching into new styles, you take a lot of photos and do a lot of projects–and when you’re on a roll then you can easily lose track. When creating a journal like this, remember it is for you. There is no limit to its length. It can also be used to build a proper resume later.

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