How to Get Better Photos of Fireworks

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Lead photo by Michal Ziembicki.

If you’re in the Western Hemisphere, you’re probably celebrating your nation’s Independence Day very soon. Naturally, you’re going to want to take photos and share them on the web for all your friends to like, comment, heart, etc. It’s often a joyous time for all of us; and it should surely be one for you too.

Here are a few tips on how to take better images of fireworks.

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Five Lightweight Tripods That Won’t Feel Like You’re Carrying Extra

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One of the biggest problems with carrying a tripod around is that it can sometimes feel like you’re carrying around way more than just your camera and lenses. Whether you’re traveling or just not in the mood to lug around something massive, you’ll want something that can slip into your camera bag and get the job done. Fortunately, there are lots of great options for photographers out there that need a tripod in instances like these.

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15 Gifts Under $100 for the Photographer

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It’s no secret that photography gear is very expensive and that the hobby is general isn’t a cheap one. But there are gifts that you can snag for the photographer in your life (or yourself) that won’t break the bank too much or even at all. We’ve spent a week perusing deals and thinking of ideas for really affordable but solid gifts for the photographer under $100.

Here’s our roundup of gifts under $100.

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The Steadsnap Helps You Go Between Your Tripod and Sling Strap

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Photographers (namely sports shooters) looking for a way to go between their monopods/tripods and their sling straps may want to check out the brand new Steadsnap. It’s a low profile adapter that mounts onto the bottom of your camera and lets you connect both a tripod mounting plate and a sling strap connector.

Created by photographers Yuri and Dmitri in Canada, the Steadsnap was inspired by the daily rigors that a medical photographer at a hospital has to go through (as Yuri is one.) He needs to shoot both photos and video, and needed a more seamless transition. As the video after the jump shows, you can consider the Steadsnap almost like a hub for all your mounting accessories providing that your tripod and monopod use the same type of heads and threads.

According to the company’s blog, the prototypes were made from a single piece of aluminum until they decided to change to steel, but more on par with the same materials that aircraft machinery is made from. You can pick yours up for $34.99.

Their demo video is after the jump.

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Shooting Better Macro Images for Under $500

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When shooting macro images, you don’t need the most top of the line gear or even the best camera. What you need instead is an effective setup to give you better images. If you’re using a macro lens with the ambient light in your home, you should know that you can spend a little bit of money and get so much more from the images without needing to crank up your camera’s ISO. This actually results in a bigger loss of details. The best way to do it is to go for an affordable lens, tripod and a great lighting setup for cheap.

Here are some of our favorite items to use for macro photography projects at home for under $500.

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The Heirloom Is Looking to Replace Your Tripod With a Tomato

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The Heirloom has to be one of the weirder Kickstarter initiatives that we’ve seen in a while. It’s looking to replace a table top tripod, and is also looking to balance your camera on top of its super soft and plushy self. Essentially, it’s a glorified beanbag that’s designed to morph and conform to its surroundings while balancing a camera on top of it. But it’s not only being aimed at mirrorless and point and shoot camera folks–they’re also pitching it to mobile shooters.

To be honest though, I can’t exactly see myself carrying around a bean bag that looks like a tomato just for the purpose of stability. But the idea itself is pretty novel.

The Kickstarter video is after the jump; and we still think it’s a pretty cute idea.

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How to Make the Most of Photographing in Public Gardens

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I am lucky enough to live in a city which is near several beautiful public gardens. It provides a wonderful way to spend the day as well as make photographs. It would seem that there are many who agree with me from counting the many cameras hanging from other people’s necks.

Many people only think of Spring as the ideal time to visit a public garden. However, if the gardens in my community are any indication, it’s worth a visit anytime of the year. Here are some tips to make the most of your time, especially this summer season.

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