Friday, October 30, 2009

Photo Tip Friday - EXIF Info

Photo Tip Friday - EXIF Info

trees and mountains in the autumn

In the days before digital cameras, the best a photographer could do to remember all the camera settings for an image was to write them down for each shot.

Very time consuming and confusing and not always practical to do.

Digital photography allows the photographer to have all the camera settings, date, time, and even the lens focal length at their fingertips with a click of the mouse - for every photo they take with their camera.

This is known as the EXIF info or metadata for the image.

It records the shutterspeed, f-stop number, ISO, size, and many other settings including the flash settings too.

I tried to show the EXIF screen for the above image, but I could not get it to come through on this post.

When viewing your images on your computer, right click on the photo, and click "properties" on the drop down box.

From there, click on the "image" tab and scroll down a bit. The header reads: EXIF.

All of the camera settings are listed under that header.

It is a great learning tool for a beginner, and it makes life a lot easier for the more experienced!

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

ABC Wednesday - O is for Oak Leaf Floating

O is for Oak Leaf Floating............

an oak leaf floating in the ocean beside some seaweed

I know it doesn't look like it is in the water, but this leaf is floating on top of it.

The polarizer is doing such a good job, it completely removed the glare from the water and allowed us to see under the surface.

The incoming tide had a gentle flow against the rocks and the seaweed beneath the surface was slowly swaying back and forth.

I was lucky to enough to grab the shot before the leaf was pushed against the rocks by the water.

I like the splash of color that the leaf gives to the whole scene, and if you view the larger image, all of the little details become much clearer.

This is the fifth round of ABC Wednesday. If you would like to join in please visit this site for the details.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Old Bridge Reflection - My World

Old Bridge Reflection - My World

reflection in the water of an old bridge

Once used for just trains, this old bridge was converted to vehicle traffic many years ago.

It's old and rusty but still quite sturdy as it stretches the short distance over the small river.

There was plenty of water to catch the reflection - usually it is quite low in the summer with mostly rocks showing.

Almost looks abstract with the upsidedown bridge.

MWT White

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Pussy Willows

Pussy Willows

macro of soft pussy willow buds in the spring

These were taken this past spring - soft willow buds that we grew up calling pussy willows.

They only last a couple of days before the leaves begin to emerge and cast off their soft furry shell.

We loved them as kids, and I still look forward to them each spring.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Photo Tip Friday - My Favorite Filter - The Polarizer

Photo Tip Friday - My Favorite Filter - The Polarizer

blue skies and waters heightened by a polarizer

In last week's post I mentioned a problem that my polarizer filter was causing with my lens.

Theresa, over at Out in the Backyard asked what a polarizer was used for, and I am glad she did because it is my favorite filter.

Everyone loves a deep blue ocean and a beautiful blue sky overhead.

Many times the sky seems a bit washed out, and the glare on the water doesn't allow the deep colors to show up in an image.

So, how does a photographer get those vivid blues?

They use their trusty polarizer filter.

And not only does that polarizer make the blue colors more vivid, it enhances the reds and greens also.

It effectively removes reflections from glass and water so you can see beneath the surface with more depth.

A little piece of magic that I would never be without - especially since I love nature and landscape photography.

I keep it on my lens at all times - I have one for each lens.

Since this filter "spins" to increase the polarizing effect, you can effectively turn it so that it doesn't work at all if you do not need it.

One thing to keep in mind if you keep it on the camera at all times - you need to adjust your exposure.

As with all filters, it is another "layer" for the light go through, and adjusting for the exposure compensates for this.

A circular polarizer is a must for digital cameras with autofocus lenses. A Linear one does not work with an AF lens.

Keep in mind that the polarizer also tends to "cool" down the overall tone of the image, so I recommend a Moose's Polarizer filter which includes an 81a warming filter built into it to put the "warmth" back into the photo.

Spending a little more for a quality polarizer is really worth it in the end - it is the best little helper a photographer can have!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

ABC Wednesday - N is for Nest

N is for Nest............

moon rising over the power plant in the summer

This is the most unique sundial I have ever seen. Mama bird feeding her babies in the nest with the stretched worm casting the shadow that is needed to tell the time.

This is a scan from a slide that I took over 25 years ago.

No matter how much I try, I cannot remember where I found this little work of art.

It would be great to go back there and capture them from a different angle.

Perhaps someday the fog will clear and my brain will remember.

This is the fifth round of ABC Wednesday. If you would like to join in please visit this site for the details.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Thin Ice Forming - My World

Thin Ice Forming - My World

moon rising over the power plant in the summer

I stumbled upon an interesting meme while visiting a new blog, and I decided I would give it a try.

My World, Tuesday is the name of the community, and it takes us all over the globe.

My contribution for this first post was taken late last autumn.

Thin ice was just forming over the lake, but the reflection was still just as beautiful in the late afternoon sunlight.

MWT White

Friday, October 16, 2009

Photo Tip Friday - Dealing with Vignetting

Photo Tip Friday - Dealing with Vignetting

photo showing the effects of vignetting

Have you ever heard of the word or term, vignetting?

Well, if you look at the image above, I bet you can quickly figure out what it is.

This photo has come directly from the camera - no photoshopping, cropping, or adjustments of any kind (something you will very rarely find here).

The edges of the photo loose the brightness that composes the center of the image.

And what causes this, you may ask.

Well, sometimes it is intended, and there are filters available for getting that effect in a photo.

But in my case, it was not intended.

And it is something that you cannot see through the viewfinder when taking the photo.

In the above image, it was caused by a couple of things.

First, I used my wide angle lens at it fullest capability.

This is usually not a problem most of the time, but I like to keep a polarizer filter on my lens at all times.

And unless you specifically purchase a slim (very hard to find a quality one) filter, then the polarizer filter tends to be a rather "thick" piece with a wider rim.

The lens in the wide angle position can "see" the edges of the rim, and it shows in the image, darkening the corners.

Now, you can get around this by purchasing a step up ring, and getting a bigger filter so it sits out beyond the lens' edges.

Filters for wide angle lens are bigger and more expensive, and by using the above method, you need to purchase an even larger filter (and lens cap).

As I have found out, it is best to check this out before you purchase your filters so you don't end up with unused, expensive equipment.

Or you can use the square filters that fit on any size lens as long as you have the correct mounts.

When I finally get to processing this image, a simple crop will easily take care of that unwanted vignetting without taking anything away from the image.

I was lucky this time.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

ABC Wednesday - M is for Moon

M is for Moon............

moon rising over the power plant in the summer

I wasn't expecting to catch this view when we headed out to the ocean one morning during the summer.

We usually head back home before dark, but the boys wanted to stop for one last chance of catching a fish before we left.

Had I known all of this, I would have grabbed my tripod or monopod.

When all else fails, setting the camera on a picnic table to avoid any motion works just as well.

Now if we head anywhere outside our immediate area, the monopod goes in the car - no matter what!

This is the fifth round of ABC Wednesday. If you would like to join in please visit this site for the details.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Almost Like a Watercolor

Almost Like a Watercolor

a foggy morning at the breaker wall

It's hard to tell from this small photo, but the reflection in the water of the branches and grasses reminds me of a watercolor painting.

It shows the same affect of the way that the water color paint tends to spread across the textured paper.

If you click on the image, it will bring you to my website where a larger image can be viewed with more details.

It's kind of neat - a textured reflection brought about by a slight wind across the top of the water.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Photo Tip Friday - Keep it Dry

Photo Tip Friday - Keep it Dry

a foggy morning at the breaker wall

Today is my 27th wedding anniversary, and we were supposed to spend it at the ocean.

Watching the weather forecast all week, I knew it wasn't going to be a bright sunny day, but overcast with a 50% chance of showers in the late afternoon.

No problem, I think to myself, I always carry a plastic bag, tucked in the corner of my camera case.

Since my gear comes everywhere with me, you just never know, and I don't want it wet.

That bag will keep things dry until I can get in the car or inside out of the weather.

Well, last night the weather forecast was for rain all day.

That little bag was not going to do me any good with that kind of precipitation.

So the trip is postponed - too much water for walking humans and cameras today.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

ABC Wednesday - L is for Light

L is for Light............

red berries along the water's edge in the autumn

Photography is all about the light - without it, there is nothing for the camera to capture.

And sometimes "finding" that light is a really tough.

Since I prefer natural light to the studio or flash, I have very little control over what mother nature gives me to work with.

Too much and the photo is flat.

Too little hides all the delicious details.

It doesn't happen very often, but when that right light comes along - it can give me goosebumps.

The clouds have to be just right, the sun's position in the sky has to be just so - and I have to be there to "see" it.

There are times when I have waited and waited for the right light - it just can't be predicted.

Stumbling on it it very exciting too.

It's not something that can be explained, but when it appears, you can certainly feel it - and it is the best !

This is the fifth round of ABC Wednesday. If you would like to join in please visit this site for the details.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Building a Blog List

Building a Blog List

bright red vines in the autumn

This is a view from the apple orchard that we have been going to for the last 20 years or so.

It's a top a big hill, and it has the most fabulous view.

We can pick our own apples here, and we usually enjoy an autumn afternoon during the week when it is less busy.

On to the title of this post.

I have been building a blog list over the last few days of many of the blogs I visit each day while dropping my entrecards.

Since so many blogs are leaving that community, I started this list so I don't loose any more great blogs that I enjoy reading.

I have been part of that community for almost 2 years, and I have decided to just sit tight for a bit and see what happens over there before I make any decisions.

I have found so many terrific blogs over there that I hate to make a rash decision and just leave even though I am not in agreement with their recent changes.

My list is an ongoing project, and as I visit each day, I will add more.

Even though I don't comment much, I do enjoy reading these blogs, and would miss them greatly if I were to loose track of them.

Good thing blogger makes it so easy to add these links, and it even includes when they update with a snippet of the title.

A great addition to my blog that I will use to keep up to date with everyone's posts.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Autumn Leaves

Autumn Leaves

bright red vines in the autumn

A big apology to my readers for not making a post yesterday on Photo Tip Friday.

It has been such a busy week, and it wasn't until this morning that I realized I hadn't done a post.

As the fall starts to near a close, we start to pick up the pace in our online store in anticipation of the holidays, and it leaves less time for my photography.

I try to grab a few minutes here and there, but with the economy being as it is, the main bread and butter becomes a priority.

Will try to keep things going as regular and I appreciate you stopping by.

Take care, my friends, and enjoy the beautiful autumn days which pass so quickly!


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