Shoot for the Moon

Almost everyone has experienced a “moon-lit night”. This is when a full moon, or nearly full moon, lights up a dark night. You see everything around you fairly well, which is evidence that the small amount of sunlight that the moon reflects is actually quite bright.

Why is this a problem for moon photography? When the moon is so bright and everything itself is much darker, it is impossible to make a photo where¬†both¬†the moon and the subject are clearly visible. Either the moon is very bright and washed out (and everything else is properly exposed), or the moon’s details are well-defined, but everything else is black or very dark. We’ll get to possible solutions in a little bit.

The other problem with moon photography is that it is actually quite small in the sky. Using a normal lens will cause the moon to appear very small in the resulting photo. This will not usually create a compelling image, even if the frame is properly exposed. Of course you can use a zoom lens and take a photo of the moon, but that is usually pretty boring.

So what is a photographer to do? My suggestions are as follows:

  • Plan on photographing a full moon at or near moonrise or moonset, when the moon is very near the horizon
  • Look for interesting subjects that are large (e.g. building or tree size), in a large flat region, and which are visible from a distance of a few hundred feet to a few hundred yards.
  • Research the direction (aka the azimuth) where the moon will rise or set in a given month, and select a subject where the moon will be easily be visible and adjacent to the subject from a distance

OK, you may not be able to easily visualize these ideas, but let me explain what I’m trying to accomplish here. I want you to photograph the full moon near the horizon, from a distance, and with an interesting subject in the frame. The reason I want to photograph the full moon near the horizon is because the light it is emitting nearly matches the ambient light of the rest of the world at that time. That’s because the sun would be directly behind you and it would be illuminating both the moon and your subject equally.

This concept of even lighting only works with the full moon, because during other phases of the moon the moon is either too high in the sky or below the horizon when the sun is behind you.

Now simply photographing the moon near the horizon does not alone make for an interesting image. So now think about making the moon LARGE in the frame, and in combination with an interesting subject. This is the hard part. You obviously will be using a zoom lens for this, so you will be shooting BOTH the moon and the subject from a distance. They need to be very near each other in the frame. This is where a lot of planning is needed. You need a large, unobstructed, flat area for this (i.e. no hills, trees, buildings, etc) so that the rising or setting moon is visible.

Producing Wonderful Canvas Prints

Speedy convenience

If you are considering canvas prints online; take into account that like most other production methods, it’s more convenient and cost saving to have as many pictures processed at one time as possible. Your online service has the capacity to provide you with prints on canvas quickly and effectively. An example of this is that not only can the original photo to be transformed onto canvas, but also the negatives.

Prints for effective gifts

Canvas prints online make unusual and special gifts that are highly appreciated by the recipient. High-quality photos on canvas can be produced from digital photos, with this method of transformation being an easy and effective process. For a professional, it is possible for ordinary photographs to be transposed into a canvas print; using the latest procedures. In the application of the Giclee canvas, the online facility provides the user with an efficient and effective service.

Process versatility

There are various types of canvas prints online available, as well as offline, at reasonable prices, especially when compared with painted portraits. This revolutionary method is ideal for preserving memories, for example, of weddings, special occasions, birthdays and other parties, baby showers as well as special people. In addition, your images can also be used for producing a fine art Giclee.

Material quality

It is not surprising that the quality of the materials used in this process, influence the end result; for instance, the quality of the canvas. The preferred material is cotton without an acid content, enabling a proper and complete absorption of ink. This helps prevent any type of yellow coloured formation. Another factor related to canvas prints online is that care should be taken with the quality of ink used. This can also influence the normal long-life of the process. The color-fastness of the ink must be appropriate to provide resistance to fading.

Special photo selections

When choosing photos for your canvas prints online it is wise to select those produced from cameras boasting higher pixels. This factor ensures that the image quality is not compromised, even should the process include photo enlargements. In the case of a selection for a gift; you will need to determine the best available, meaningful picture of that person(s). It should represent a time or place that is particularly special to them. Your choice of a photograph will be enhanced by a high-resolution and be on the bright side, without any “red-eye” issues, to create a stunning canvas print.

Insight Into Image Masking

Another masking technique utilizes the transparency of the object (in an image) itself to affect its visibility. This can help you to edit your old images and give them a new look. You can also play around with your new images and create something unique that can be used in advertising, social networking or just for creating a photo album. For masking an object, you can either use a vector or a bitmap image. The technique can be applied to multiple objects or grouped objects as well. Often, business professionals use masking for creating catalogues for various products that they sell.

If you have used other vector illustration applications such as Macromedia FreeHand, perhaps you are familiar with vector masks, which are very convenient for image editing. The layout of a vector mask object crops the underlying objects to the shape of its path, creating a cookie-cutter effect. When a vector mask is created, the Layers panel displays a thumbnail with a pen icon to indicate that it has created a mask of this type. Not only that, you also get the option to customize the color of the masked object and give it a different style altogether.

If you have used Photoshop you are probably familiar with layer masks. Bitmap masking resemble the layer in which the pixels in the image affect the visibility of underlying objects. This technique can be applied in two different ways:

  • By using an existing object to hide other objects – This technique is similar to the way vector masking is applied.
  • By creating what is called an empty mask – Empty, fully transparent or totally opaque masks can help in highlighting or hiding objects in an image. A transparent (or white) mask highlights all the masked objects, while an opaque (or black) mask hides them.

Seamless Portrait Editing Idea

Open Your Portrait

After opening your portrait on Photoshop make a duplicate of the image twice by pressing Ctrl + J two times, because we don’t want to affect the original image.

Naming the layers

Edit the upper layer name to ‘High Frequency’ and lower layer to ‘Low Frequency’. Hide the upper layer by clicking on the eyeball icon.

Applying Gaussian Blur Effect

Select the lower layer and go to the Filter and click on Blur then select Gaussian Blur and drag the slider to right to get a slightly blurry effect so that wrinkles and pimples disappear. Now bring back the visibility of the upper layer and select it.

Apply Image

Selecting the upper layer, in our case ‘High Frequency’ go to Image and click on apply image from the drop down menu. When the dialog box appears, select ‘Low frequency’ and for blending mode select ‘Subtract’. The Scale should be 1 or 2 and offset 128. After altering all the values properly, click on OK. You will notice the upper layer turns to grey embossed type. Now change the blending mode of the upper layer to ‘Linear Light’. As soon as you change it your photo gets back to its original appearance.

Selecting Lasso Tool

Now select the ‘Lower Frequency’ layer and the select Lasso tool, change the value of Feather of Lasso tool to 25 or 27. Cover the forehead of your portrait by drawing with the lasso tool. Now go to Filter again and select Blur then Gaussian Blur. Drag the slider to vanish all the spots and pimples over the forehead. When you feel happy with the result, click OK. Now you can cover the areas on chin and cheek by drawing with lasso tool, apply the preset Gaussian effect by pressing Ctrl + F. If you can do it properly, you will get a spotless beauty at the end.

Editing pimples and dark spots

Select the upper layer and pick the Spot Healing Brush tool from tool menu, make the size of brush slightly bigger than the pimple or spot and holding the Alt key click on a spotless area near to the pimple and then release the Alt key and click on the pimple. In this process you will get rid of all the pimples and spots on the face.

Colors Theory

Primary Colors

Many of us know about the primary shades, we all have learnt about them in school. They are the colors that can’t be made by mixing two colors, they are primary colors of a color wheel. While a standard artist color wheel makes use of red, yellow and blue as primary colors many photographers think regarding RBG (red, blue and green) color spectrum.

Secondary Shades

Secondary colors are a result of the mixing of primary colors. On the photographers color wheel, these shades are orange, purple and green.

Tertiary Hues

Tertiary colors are created by combining the secondary and primary shades. For instance, when using the first yellow, blue and red hues wheel mixing the orange and red or green and blue would result in tertiary hues.

Complementary Shades

One of the most common links is between the additional hues. Complementary colors fall in the opposite from one another on the color board. These colors develop high contrast and grab the viewer attention.

Analogous Colors

Analogous hues are next to each other on the wheel. Making use of similar shades create a more harmonious shade scheme and low-contrast.

Monochromatic Hues

The monochromes are usually referred as black and white; monochromatic shades are made from hues of just one hue, for example, several different tones of blue. Monochromatic shades are low in contrast and usually create a soothing look.

Fashion and Portfolio Shoot

Pre-Shoot Planning

  • Step 1: Budget. It’s always best to asses your budget first. You don’t want to start planning, hoping, and dreaming up an amazing concept, only to realize you can’t afford to make it a reality.
  • Step 2: Creative Direction. Now that you know how much budget you have to work with, you can brainstorm your creative direction. A mood board made up of tears is a great place to start. Pulling tears can be physically tearing what you like from catalogs and magazines, taking screen grabs of other websites, pulling past work of your own, or making a Pinterest board. Whatever you do, it’s a good idea to put it into a sharable digital format so you can easily share it with other members of your team. It’s important to review and keep in mind the product you are shooting while you are pulling tears to make sure there isn’t a disconnect from what you are envisioning and the product you have to work with. For instance, you might love the look of a shoot that took place in a sleek modern home, but if your product is bohemian you will have a hard time making that vision successful. After you have assembled your mood board, you can determine if you want to achieve your vision in a studio or on location somewhere.
  • Step 3: Booking. Hiring the right people is just as important as having great product and even more important than a great location in my opinion. Quality talent makes quality photos. If you have best fashion photographers they can make a less than ideal location look fantastic.

For a lookbook shoot, you’ll need to book the following:

  • Photographer: You can’t create a good piece of art without an amazing artist you need professional photographer for model portfolio.
  • Model: Pick someone you think is a good fit for the brand and whom your customer will identify with. A good model knows their angles, what expressions look good on them, how to take direction, and how to look natural. If you don’t pay for a good model, you might end up having to take a few hundred photos to get one you like. A good model will save you time (which is the same thing as money).
  • Stylist: Depending on what you need and what you can afford, a stylist can be an incredibly valuable member of your team. They can help you put the looks together, source accessories, create shot lists, make the product fit flawlessly on set, and assist with creative direction consistent with the outfits.
  • Hair & Makeup: Looking good on camera is different than looking good to the naked eye. It’s worth bringing in a professional who knows hair and makeup for photography; for example, you may want your model to have a smoky eye, but the flash creates shadows intensifying that look. You want a makeup artist who knows how to adjust for lighting to achieve the desired look on camera.
  • Location: If you’re shooting in-studio, you need to book time if the photographer doesn’t already have their own space. If you’re shooting on-location, you may need to acquire permits for public spaces, rent a private dwelling, or get permission to shoot on hotel or other business property.
  • Set Designer and/or Prop Stylist: If you are shooting in-studio and have something unique you want to create, you may want to hire a set designer and/or a prop stylist to bring the set to life.

Pose Like a Model for Photos

The Classic Hands-On-Hip

It’s always a good idea to not leave your hands limp or rogue. Perching one arm on the hip, weight shifted to one side and relaxing your shoulders. This “Teapot” pose is so popular with models, it slims your figure and creates a tall and dignified look that makes the waist appears slimmer. Be sure to position your lifted arm that’s placed on the hip to show off any fancy accessories or nail polish art.

Use the Mirror

Pose in front of your new BFF, the mirror, until you are near perfect at it. Learn your body shape and pick sides and angles you love. Forget about feeling guilty about your vanity, and remember “all is vanity”. Use your imagination and pretend someone else is behind the mirror, camera in hand and snapping away. Keep your feet in check for full-body shots, they are always closest to the mirror and you do not want to appear big-footed.

Go Lower

When sitting your camera height should be well above your eye level and your photographer standing a little far for the best result. This particular technique would show all your features, hair and makeup and also give you the illusion of a more petite, skinny frame.

Photographers often totally forget their own height and shoot from below the model’s eye line and you should never let them do that if you want the perfect photo. The chances that a shot from below help increase the height of subject or create the dramatic heroine shot you may be looking for are slim, and failed results with disappearing chins, weird shadows and dwarf shots are nearly always the end game.

For selfies, keeping your phone lens above your head will capture only your best angles and keep your neck looking elongated and swan-like.

Turn Your Head

If your face is asymmetrical in any way, not to worry you’re in good company. The easy fix for photos is to turn your head a bit when snapping and let the perfect tilt and camera angle hide that crooked smile of yours. Tilting your head is also a great trick for slimming your profile so if you really want to pose like a model, try turning slightly rather than facing the camera head on.

Stand Straight, Chin Out

Let the one thing you do not forget about perfecting your photo posture be to put your best foot and chin forward and stand up straight.

Cameras are only two-dimensional, meaning a photo cannot display its subject in all three dimensions unless it is shot that way purposely. When posing in front of the camera and looking straight at it, pushing your chin out, down and forward can extend your jawline, creating the sharper and stronger facial lines that are associated with model features.

Mirror Effect Using Photoshop

The first thing you will need to do is upload the images to your computer. After that, you will need to open Photoshop and then access the images in it one by one. Once you have opened the first image, right-click on it and then click on the option that says ‘Duplicate Layer’ and then click on ‘OK’. At this point, you will have to drag the panel where the image is displayed and increase its size in order to create space for the mirror image under it. After that create a ‘New Guide’ by selecting the same from the menu option called ‘View’.

The value for ‘Orientation’ and ‘Position’ should be ‘Vertical’ and ‘50%’ respectively. Now, you should drag the main image to the left of the guide that has been created with the help of the ‘Move tool’. Now select the portion of the image that should be ‘mirrored’ and then place it into a new layer. Now, making sure that in the layers panel, the ‘Background copy’ option is selected, flip the duplicate layer by clicking on Transform> Flip Horizontal and then move the reversed image immediately below the original (must fit together perfectly).

To move the image, hold down the ‘Ctrl key’ on the keyboard while simultaneously pressing the left button of the mouse. Click on ‘Enter’ and then exit the Transform command for the changes to be effective. Apart from that, you will also need to click on the ‘View’ menu and then click on ‘Click Guides’ for removing the guide and getting the final image with mirror effect. The next step will be to save the image created on your computer. You can then access it and upload it to your website or social networking sites for creating innovative and appealing advertising campaigns.

Mind-Blowing Photography Tips For Beginners

Work the subject!

Try shooting the same thing in as many ways you can that capture different aspects about it. After you shoot look through your shoot and critique your work. Be mindful of what worked and what didn’t and why. Editing your shoot is an important part of the learning process.

Study the work of other photographers.

Find something that inspires you and pay attention to what you like and try to mimic it. Then try to make it your own by bringing in something new and different.

Familiarize yourself with photography software!

Digital software is today’s darkroom & developing an image is just as important as how you shoot it. My favorite way to digitally polish my images is through Lightroom. It’s amazing what it allows you to do to an image without exposing yourself to chemicals or wasting photo paper and developer. The preset filters are a great way to intensify the tone of the image, but you must know how to fine-tune them to make the image just so. Photoshop is also an important tool.

Learn Lighting!

I suggest photographing a subject at different times of day and compare them. If you have access to professional lighting equipment try shooting your subject lit from different angles, diffusion vs. Hard lighting, etc… There are jobs just dedicated to lighting on high-end shoots, so there are no limits there if you have the budget. Really think about how the light conveys your message to the viewer.

Go with your instincts!

Make sure what you are shooting is fulfilling something for you. There is no point in shooting something you aren’t enjoying. It will show in your work! The more you are passionate about it, the more creatively you can capture it! I’ve worked with so many photographers that have talent, but take on shoots they don’t enjoy and it showed in the quality of the images. For example, I could never understand why somebody would hire a nature photographer to shoot their portraits. Somebody that isn’t a people person doesn’t take flattering photos of people no matter how much technical knowledge they have. On the other hand, if you see all people as beautiful and you have a natural talent for making a person feel good about him/herself, then portrait photography is a great niche!

How to Create Frightening Photos

Choose a subject

Ask a close friend or family member to be your model for this scary shot, and set up a camera on a tripod. Firstly, take a photo of a room which can be used as the background in the completed image. Making sure that you don’t move the camera and without adjusting the settings, ask your model to position themselves in front of the camera in the same room where you took your background image. You will need to take a photo of your model on a prop that provides a raised surface from the ground to give the impression that they are levitating. A ladder, table or chair will provide you with the effect you need, but ensure safety precautions are taken at all times, and help your model on and off the platform. Make sure that you don’t move the camera when you are taking the photograph.

Make use of photo editing software

Using a photo editing program of your choice, load your digital prints and place both the background photograph and the image of your model side-by-side in the software. Using your mouse, place the image with your model on top of the original background image. Both photographs should be lined up correctly. Set the image opacity for the photograph with your model to around 50% by using the opacity tool in the control panel of the software program. Experiment with the different settings.

Use filters and layers

To create a ghostly image of a person levitating, use a layer mask from the control panel of your software program and use an eraser or brush tool to cover-up the prop that you used in your second photo. Because you used the opacity tool in the previous step, the area which contained your prop should be filled with the underlying background image to create a scary levitation effect. Save your image and send your levitation photography to family and friends.