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The Perfect Portrait Photography

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portrait photographyIs it impossible to shoot your clients who have never done portrait photography before like a model?

The answer is yes! As long as you know how to bring out the best angle and light out of your client, it’s very doable. Cause we’re all actually amazing just the way we are, with the right photographer and lighting, that is.

While this might be a motivation for you, you can also motivate your clients who might have problems with self-confidence after you are convinced enough that you can shoot them like a pro.

No one is born ugly… at least most people

Most of the people in the world are never born ugly, or at least, they can look so much better through your camera lens. Some of us have that one angle that we know we look better with. But many never bothered to find theirs. When that happens, it’s up to you to figure it out with your photographer’s eyes.

It’s firstly, of course, experimental. You will have to test shoot several times and compare which one looks better. After you know this, it’s time to play with your creativity!

Use natural light as much as possible

As much as possible, try not to light things up with your flash. If you’re shooting outdoor, make use of the natural light and reflectors. Learning what different colors of reflectors can do to your subject is also important. Most photographers opt for a white or silver reflector to bounce back natural, white color. Silver, however, tend to be shiny and is a stronger reflector, while white will bounce back a more natural and ‘damp’ white.

Learning from the expert

Observing the pictures of pros, like www.alanhutchison.co.uk, who also do portrait photography will help a lot in terms of posing and lighting. There’s no need for you to follow their techniques, but rather, learn something from why they take pictures in a certain way. Utilize what you have to achieve the same quality and try to develop a better way from what you’ve learned.

Learn about modeling

If your client is not able to pose, then maybe you can give them one or two quick tips to help them act or enhance their confidence. To do this, you will want to learn the basic stuff of modeling and motivation. Helping and giving them directions as to how to act can only be achieved when you at least know a thing or two about it.

Pay attention to small details

Various small details from the cracks on the staircase to the embroidery on your clients’ dresses can become the focus of the camera. Instead of constantly trying to get a clear image of your subjects, put them in the background instead and create a nice bokeh.

This is just one among many methods you can use in switching your focus to the things around your subject. There’s nothing wrong with exploring new ways of doing portrait photography like this and in fact, they can be your strongest selling point!

Finally, don’t stop telling your client that they look good and awesome and don’t hesitate when you say that! You want them to be able to smile confidently to the camera despite what they might have felt before and how people look at them.

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How To Be A Wedding Photographer In Cardiff

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Establishing yourself as a wedding photographer from Cardiff is no easy feat to conquer.

wedding photographer in CardiffThere are so many different things that you will need to look into at some point or so. Starting out will always turn out to be one of the hardest things for you to check out as you go along. You need to make sure that you will always have all of the right things going for you because starting out has always been the trickiest part of the ordeal as you go along. There are so many different investments that you will need to make somewhere along the way and suffice it to say, they will not be cheap. However, if you play things out the right way, you should be able to achieve everything that you would like to achieve in the end of it all.

Source out equipment

As a wedding photographer from Cardiff, you need to make sure that you will be able to go ahead and source out your equipment the right way. This is not the kind of thing that you should be taking lightly because this requires money. When you are still starting out, you won’t really have a lot of it and this is what you should really be looking out for it as much as possible. Be resourceful when you are looking for new equipment as you are starting out. One of the biggest secrets in something like this is that most of the wedding photographers out there don’t necessarily start off with new gear all of the time. You should try to see if you can make do with secondhand equipment. Most of the wedding photographers in Cardiff upgrade their gear all of the time. As a new wedding photographer, you don’t necessarily have to start off with the highest end of equipment as you go along. Something that shoots in RAW and that can churn out decent pictures should be enough. You can always upgrade as you continue to make your way up the ladder and as you gain reputation as a wedding photographer from Cardiff more and more. However, until you get to the point wherein you will be able to say that, you should opt for a more budget-friendly option until you get to make substantial amounts of money that will allow you to afford everything that you would like to get on the higher end of the scale.

Try to gain experience in any way that you can.

People won’t be that eager in hiring you as a wedding photographer if you don’t have a lot of projects under your belt just yet. However, the pond is fairly big enough for a newbie to get equal chances in wedding photography so there’s no reason why you should lose hope in something like this. You will get your chances and you will still get to book people along the way for as long as you are diligent enough in sourcing out your own clients. It won’t be easy but it will always be possible.Want some examples of Wedding Photography in Cardiff, visit Kate Adam’s website which shows impressive wedding photographs

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Getting Started in Baby Photography

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Babies are perhaps one of the most challenging subjects to photograph, mainly because babies have their own schedules, not to mention you can’t expect them to follow directions as to how they would pose. On the flipside, such qualities make them such fascinating subjects because of them being natural, not to mention being cute to look at as well.

Difficult as they can be, babies are not impossible subjects to tackle. If you’re a photographer who is looking into specializing into baby photography, let this guide help you out on how to get started and develop your skills doing this type of photography.

Timing the shoot

As noted earlier, babies have their own schedules as they tend to be awake or asleep at any given time of the day. Thus, it is best to plan ahead and coordinate with the mother as much as possible as to the best time when to take the photos. Generally speaking, for newborns, it is best to time the shoot while the baby is sleepy.

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Keep shooting

Nevertheless, there are those unpredictable moments when the baby starts to cry or throws a tantrum as you are about to shoot. Given the nature of how babies behave, rather than wait it out until the baby stops crying or throwing a tantrum, it is best for the photographer to keep shooting, preferably having your camera take photos in continuous shooting mode. Chances are, there is a moment worthy to be captured even if the baby is having such moods.

Always be ready

Given the aforementioned unpredictable moments, you’ll never know if and/or when the baby is caught or having a moment that can be considered “camera worthy.” As a photographer, you should keep your eyes and lenses open for such moments and make sure you get to capture them well.

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Keep it simple

One fault a number of baby photographers make is that they tend to prepare elaborate setups for their baby photography shoots. Such preparations only serve to lessen the highlight of your subject which is the baby. And that should not be the case. Simplicity is the key for good baby photography and any elements that are to be added in the photo should not serve to distract the main subject of the photo which is the baby.

No flash, better lighting

For baby photography, the use of flash is discouraged as much as possible. For one, the subject may look bad with the harsh lighting the flash provides. And also, some babies may not be fond of the flash blinking in front of them. On the other hand, a better non-flash lighting system goes well with the natural soft elements of the subject, highlighting the baby’s features. As much as possible, go for natural light like the light coming in through the window or through an open door, creating a more artistic effect.

Invest in good equipment

If you plan to set up your own studio for baby photography, it is important to invest in some good equipment for you to shoot quality images. If your studio does not have any natural lighting coming in, better invest in lights that would highlight the soft features of your subject. Another piece of equipment you should invest on is a small heating system which will provide a little warmth for the baby especially if the baby is going to be shot not fully clothed or wrapped.

Create a personal approach

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Some baby photographers make a mistake in treating babies as a client, with no sense of attachment or connection whatsoever. Regardless of your relationship with the baby subject, it is important that you make a connection, make the subject feel comfortable with you as you take those pictures. Create not just photos but memories that will be cherished for a long time.

Recommendations

For your camera, it is best for baby photography to set it at a high ISO and/or faster shutter speeds to ensure good detail. As a rule of thumb, try to go for 1/500s shutter speed and an aperture of f/5.6 and wider under normal daylight. It is also recommended that the camera lens should be f/1.8 or lower for faster shutter speeds.

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Ten Must-Capture Wedding Shots

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Weddings are one of the most important celebrations in a person’s life. As such, wedding photographers have the unenviable task of making sure every important moment of such a celebration gets to be captured.

Granted that there are many moments to choose from, if one would not which moment matters most, there is a chance that at least one important moment would be missed, creating an incomplete wedding experience that no one would want to have. Thus, we have prepared the 10 most important shots that must be captured during the wedding to serve as a handy guide for both the photographer and the couple to ensure that an event as memorable as wedding is captured extensively well, with no important missed in the process.

The Wedding Ceremony

  1. The procession of the bridal party

This moment marks the beginning of the wedding ceremony proper, so it is important that this is captured. In particular, the moment the flower girl and the ring bearer walk the aisle is worthy to capture, especially if these roles are played by children which would provide a moment of cuteness.

  1. The bride marches down the aisle

To say the least, the moment the bride enters and walks down the aisle is a magical moment that cannot be expressed in mere words. It also shows the bride at her most radiant and most graceful that makes this moment picture-worthy, so to speak.

  1. The bride and the groom meeting at the altar

Symbolically, this moment is a transition period in which the bride and the groom would meet for the last time as boyfriend and girlfriend onwards to their first moment to come as husband and wife. For both of them, it is a moment mixed with excitement, nervousness, and joy, emotions that should be captured as an important part of the ceremony and of their lives as well.

  1. Recital of vows of the bride and the groom

This is an important part of the wedding ceremony in which both the bride and the groom express their promises of love and faithfulness to each other. It is a sincere moment that never fails to tug the heartstrings.

  1. The exchange of rings between the bride and the groom

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This is also another important part of the wedding ceremony that carries a lot of meaning. No words are necessary as the act itself is enough to show that the bride and the groom are now ready to face a new chapter in their lives together as a married couple. For this moment, it is important that the action of the hands are captured clearly.

  1. The kiss

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Of course, this is the most well-known and the most anticipated part of the ceremony, the highlight of the event for that matter. Nothing else needs to be said but it is important that this moment is captured as perfect as possible.

The Wedding Reception

  1. Sipping of the champagne by the bride and the groom

This is one of the traditions of the wedding reception that should not be missed as it serves to celebrate the union of the bride and the groom as newlyweds as well as the hope of a blissful and fruitful union of the two.

  1. First dance of the bride and the groom

This moment never fails to provide a romantic atmosphere as the newlyweds do what is considered their first romantic act as husband and wife. It is considered a sweet and lovely spectacle, not to mention a milestone that deserves to be recorded.

  1. The bride and the groom cut the wedding cake

The cutting of the wedding cake is one of the oldest wedding traditions that has managed to survive over the centuries, which further stresses its significance. It is also one of the most symbolic as it symbolizes the continuity of their relationship, their support for each other, and hopes for good luck and fortune.

  1. The bouquet toss

It is one of the most popular highlights of the wedding reception and also the most fun part as well. It would be hard to miss capturing the smiles and the “competitive spirit” of the women who will try to catch the bouquet.

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Must-Know DSLR Basics for Beginners

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For a person making the switch from using a regular point and shoot camera to a DSLR camera, the transition can be an overwhelming and intimidating experience. This leads to some users to just give up and be content using the auto function of the DSLR, not realizing the full potential these cameras bring if these users knew what DSLRs can do.

That is why we have come up with this handy guide to help users like you make the most of your DSLR and help you discover what you can do with it in ways you never thought about with a camera and hone your skills as a photographer in the process.

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Learning and Setting Apertures and Shutter Speeds

One of the most important concepts in DSLR photography is learning the concept of apertures and shutter speeds. First, let’s learn what they are and each of them can do.

Aperture refers to the size of the opening in the camera lens which determines how much light can pass through. For instance, an aperture of f/2.8 means it is a large aperture that entails much light can pass through it, while an f/16 aperture is smaller in size, with little light can pass through it.

Aperture size indicates how much depth of field an image will have. This means that a small aperture allows the image to show objects located at a great distance to be captured clearly and in focus as in landscape photos. A large aperture on the other hand puts distant objects out of focus while the object located closest to the camera is captured more vividly and in greater detail, as is employed in close up shots.

Shutter speed on the other hand refers to the length of time the shutter stays open to capture a photo. This is something to take in consideration especially if your subject is a fast moving object. For instance, a faster shutter speed value of 1/250 sec allows you to vividly capture a running dog without any blur caused by the movement. Conversely, a slow shutter speed value of 1/15 sec captured blurred movements of the water which can create some artistic shots as well.

Learning about ISO

ISO measures how sensitive to light your camera’s sensor is, especially in relation to how much light is available in the area where you will be taking photos. For instance, outdoor shoots on a sunny day require less sensitivity to light of the sensor, thus needing only low ISO settings. However, low light conditions require greater sensitivity to light. Thus high ISO settings are preferred in this case.

You can either set the ISO settings to auto or you can select which ISO level to use. But as a beginner, it is recommended you leave the ISO settings at auto or choose the settings at 400-800 for outdoors and 1600 and above for indoors. Take note though that higher ISO settings may cause graininess on the photo.

Controlling Metering Settings (If Needed)

Metering refers to the calculation your camera makes for the average exposure, making sure that the photo is properly exposed which means it’s neither too dark nor too bright. Under normal lighting situations, the camera does the work so nothing else is needed to be done on your end, which also makes this control an overlooked one. However, in low light areas, the camera may not be able to do the metering properly. That is why the DSLR has an “exposure composition” control which is the +/- button near the camera shutter, allowing you to increase or decrease the lighting exposure that would be applied on to the image.

Changing the White Balance Settings

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White balance refers to how the colors appear in your photos, not just the white. Normally, the camera sets the white balance to auto and while it does the job in some cases, in other situations, it causes unrealistic color tones to appear in your photo. Thus, it is important to adjust your DSLR’s white balance settings beforehand for better results. Fortunately, the white balance settings provide different presets available to suit the lighting condition in the area where you will shoot, ranging from daylight to shade, to fluorescent (for areas mainly lighted by fluorescent lights) and flash, (for instances you will use flash, especially in minimal light) among other settings.

Final Tips

Lastly, always make it a point to read your DSLR’s manual to get you more acquainted with your camera and the controls it offers. Many DSLRs today offer more advanced features than before; discover what features they offer that would help you shoot better photographs.

As you learn more about your DSLR, try to experiment with different settings and setting combinations to get a better grasp of how each element works in achieving overall quality of your photos.