Inspiration

Photo Lessons From the Street

Street photography can be intimidating. Snagging candids of strangers is uncomfortable, at first.

While it’s best to simply to get out and learn as you go, it is nice to arm yourself with a few tips. Marius Vieth, a seasoned street-photog, doles out 10 lessons learned in this article. He includes advice on how to blend in, predict patterns and be ready for that crucial moment.

Our favorite tips from the article are:

  • Minimal gear – Take only your camera and forget the added gear. You don’t want to be swapping lenses when the perfect photo-op pops up.
  • Find natural contrasts – Your foreground should be different enough from the background to make them both visually interesting.
  • Simplify your choices – Try focusing on one element (like a color or pattern) for a couple hours.

Photo by Marius Vieth

Landscape Comp Tip for Absolute Beginners

Landscapes are some of the easiest shots to take – no arranging meetups with others, no double chins, and that fresh air is super invigorating!

If you’re just getting the hang of creating gorgeous landscape shots, you’ll benefit from understanding how to add a sense of depth with composition. Think of your photo as having three parts: foreground, middle-ground and background. Try to make sure there something of interest in all three sections.

Check out this article for a perfectly simple visual example of great landscape composition.

Photo by Scott Bourne

Take Photos, for Science!

You’re usually out snapping away at flora and fauna, so why not use those photos to help document our world?

Add your nature shots to iNaturalist and help increase the already huge online database of plants, furry creatures and creepy crawlies.

Upload your photo, tag the location and name the organism if you can. No worries if you don’t know the name, iNaturalist is teeming with people eager to help classify.

It’s a cool way to connect with other nature-lovers, learn about the life around you and add your talent to scientific research!

Photo by RJAdams55

Sharpen Up on FB

Facebook may not be the best place to show off your photography, but it is still a fantastic way to quickly share snaps with close friends and family. After all, not everyone is on Flickr.

You’ve likely noticed that FB compresses photos causing minor, but super irritating, artifacts. Which basically negates all the hours you spent editing them to perfection. GUH.

There is a way to ensure your photos come out looking sharp on FB. Three ways, actually!

  • 1. Upload 2048px size photos, you’ll get less compression.
  • 2. Don’t sharpen the image beforehand.
  • 3. Upload PNG, rather than JPG.

Read about the how and why these tips work in this article by Photoshelter, and start uploading pics to FB without losing your hard-earned quality.

Photo by Allen Murabayashi

A Little Sleight of Hand for Surreal Shots

The Great Outdoors definitely lives up to its name, but sometimes the summer heat is just too much. Staying in doesn’t have to be a total wash though, there’s loads of creative photos you can take in the Cool Indoors!

We’re totally digging these 10 tricks for setting up surreal snaps at home. Create mini worlds with a little papercraft, fool gravity with glue or create some intruige with smoke. Most of these fun setups require supplies you likely have already. So you’ll feel resourceful and productive on your day in.

Also check out some of our own ideas for indoor fun. Now you have all the excuses you need to keep out of the heat!

Stay cool, yo.

Photo by Dina Belenko

InstaMeets: A National Park Meetup For Photogs

You know that feel when you’re left behind in a tour group because you’re too busy snapping photos? All the time. You’re not alone (this time) and a resourceful Park Ranger noticed your dilemma.

Ranger Tim created InstaMeets, in Glacier National Park, as a solution. It’s a meetup for photographers to go on photo walks, safely and slowly, together. They’re a great way to connect with and learn from other photo enthusiasts.

Hopefully this brilliant idea is picked up by other National Parks. In the meantime, if you’re headed toward Glacier, check out when the next InstaMeet is here.

Photo by NPS

See a Silhouette and Snap it

Silhouette shots are one of those styles that seem super easy, but are honestly difficult to get “just right.”

The Phoblographer wrote about three things to keep in mind when shooting silhouette shots, and we think they’re spot-on excellent advice!

  • Highlights way up: This is best achieved in post-processing, but keep it in mind while shooting so you can adjust exposure and focal points.
  • Ship Shapes: Silhouette photos rely on visually interesting shapes rather than color contrast or subject matter. Be on the lookout for unique, but recognizable, shapes.
  • Composition: Keep a good balance of shadow and light, or create drama with slightly more of one than the other.

Check out the Phoblographer’s perfectly put article here!

Photo by Chris Gampat

Tip-Top Tips for Shooting Fireworks

With the 4th of July fast approaching, you’re probably already searching for the best ways to shoot them ‘werks.

We’ve got you covered here with a few quick ‘n dirty tips and an excellent article covering more depth.

Quick Tips

  • Prime Location: Scout out the best location for the show in advance – downwind of the fireworks and free of obstructions.
  • Manual Focus: Your auto-focus is gonna have a rough time here, so don’t rely on it. Manually set your focus to infinity (or a bit closer for Canons.)
  • Low ISO: You’ll want the blacks to remain black, so keep things at or under ISO 100.
  • High Aperture: Wide aperture is key with fireworks, since they’re just made of burning embers. Shoot at f/8-f/16.
  • Low Shutter Speed: Use bulb mode if you have it. If you’re bulb-less, go for the longest shutter speed you’ve got.

Check out even more tips in this article at Digital Photography School.

Photo by Micah Goff

Poptography

You may have noticed that photography has increased in popularity in the past decade, you know, just a bit.

This photo boom can almost entirely be attributed to the photoing power of mobile phones. We’ve entered a new golden age of photography and it’s fascinating to watch current culture mix up the art a bit.

In this article on ImageBrief, Avril Delaney (whoa, cool name!) covers what she believes to be the top five ways pop culture is influencing photography. She presents some interesting challenges artists face as a result of these influences, and we’re always up for a challenge … or 5!

5 Ways Pop Culture is Influencing Photography

Photo by Ozzy Jaime

Surf’s Up!

Capturing the drama, movement, varied textures and colors of the sea is something almost every artist attempts. We’ve come a long way from mixing pigment on cave walls. These days we can snag a wave with a tap of our finger.

Technology has elevated our ability to catch waves, and in more ways than pop-out boards. Waterproof casings, almost infinite storage capacity and lightning fast shutters make for stunning photos when combined with daring photogs.

Take a look at this article with gallery on three such surf chargers.

Been craving to carve out some of your own photos? Check out the waterproof iPhone Supersuit. You could snap a photo, edit and share all before taking the drop. Epic!

 

Photo by Clark Little