Monday, May 31, 2010

Some Basic Rules

Sometimes I forget that I've come a long way as a photographer. I expect that everyone who owns a camera can shoot good photos. A colleague at work today asked me what resolution he should set his camera on.  He was referring to the size of the .jpgs. I told him it all depends what you are doing with the .jpgs. If you intend on having a picture blown up to say a 11" x 14," then you'll want the highest quality you can get. If, however, you just like showing your images off on your computer or posting them on FaceBook and you have no intention of printing them, then make them as small as possible. You'll get lots of pictures on your memory card and there is no need to take up so much space on your hard drive. If you understand this basic concept, a lot of the time you can choose the larger size when attempting a portrait of your grandchild, but then change the setting to a medium or small ,jpg when getting generic photos of the kids playing in the pool.

First and foremost, read your camera's manual. It is an invaluable source of information. It doesn't hurt to have it stored in the case with you to look up things when you feel like getting a bit creative. My first digital camera had "modes" to select for different lighting challenges. There was a "night portrait" I discovered one evening when my husband and I were shooting photos on a dock at sunset. Using that selection  allowed me to take gorgeous photos of us where you got us in the foreground but didn't loose the background.  Essentially I know how to do that with my SLR today but it takes a little figuring and shooting and adjusting sometimes. Knowing you have a "night portrait" selection can make the difference between getting what you want in the long run.
Happy Memorial Day!  We're headed upstate tomorrow to see some beautiful settings.  Stay posted for some new photos.  Happy shooting!

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