After seeing too many incidents when smart phones popped out of their tripod mounts and came crashing to the ground, I decided it was time to write this article.
A good tripod head will save you lots of frustration. For still photography I recommend two types of tripod heads. If you do a little of everything you will want a quality ball head for the quick and easy aiming of the camera. If you only do landscape or architectural photography and you want precise separate controls in each axis of motion, you will want a 3-way head.
Looking for a tripod? Choose wisely. Other than a camera and a good lens, nothing can make a bigger difference in your photography than a good tripod. This is the place to find information, recommended models, and links to more information.
There are several ways to do closeup photography. Closeup filters, extension tubes, and macro lenses are the most commonly used options. The best gear for you depends on your preferences, how you want to work, the subjects you are after, how much stuff you want to carry, and how much you want to spend. I cover your best options.
A lot of photographers have discovered their almost sharp lens was actually a very sharp lens once they tweaked the micro-adjustment settings. You will get sharper images if you adjust the settings for your specific camera and lens combinations. You do this using the micro-adjustment settings in the camera menu along with a lens calibration tool which you can buy or make yourself.
The ads started showing up on FaceBook all the time. They talk about wonderful lenses that will turn your smart phone into a camera that is better than a DSLR costing thousands of dollars. They brag about German engineering, a NASA optical formula, or the testing that proves their lenses are better than expensive lenses from Nikon, Zeiss, Leica, or Canon. The names of the companies change on a regular basis, but the scam is the same. Sad to say, a lot of people actually fall for this nonsense.
iPhone photography has become a huge thing. According to Flickr, their millions of users take more pictures with an iPhone (47%) than any other camera. A lot of iPhone photographers are looking for add on lenses for their phone, and that may include you. So which lenses are the best?
Looking for a small, mountable, “ideal for sports and action”, inexpensive, high definition video and still camera with a waterproof housing and image quality that Lucasfilm (the Star Wars people) calls “amazing”? This camera will go anywhere and mount just about anywhere. Prices range from $198 to $499 (which is a lot less than your typical DSLR with HiDef video).
Water, sand, and grit can wreak havoc with ordinary cameras, so unless you have a waterproof case for your camera (more about that later), your best bet is to get is to get a rugged, waterproof camera for underwater and the beach. This is especially true if you are around salt water.
Do you want to buy a Canon DSLR and/or lenses on a budget? This article is for you.
The holiday season is here and I am getting the usual questions about which digital cameras I recommend. The camera lists below will point you to the highest rated models. You can start with these lists and then narrow it down to a camera with the specific features you are looking for. I will help you in that regard with some information and advice on choosing a camera. The lists below will be updated throughout the holiday season as new reviews for highly rated cameras become available.
There are a lot of practical and inexpensive (more or less) gifts for photographers. Here is a nice list of items starting at $8. To make it easy to track them down, these items are individuality linked plus most of these items can be found in the Misc Goodies section of my photography store which has direct links to Amazon.com. Prices are current as of the date of this post, but prices do fluctuate. Some items can be temporarily unavailable. These items are not listed in order of price.
I’ve been recommending DPReview for years in my photography classes, workshops and online. It is one of the best camera review sites. One of the nice features is the ability to download full size JPEG test images of their “standard studio scene” for comparison purposes.
Is it a great deal? Or is it a rip-off? You are searching online for a good price and you come across a terrific deal. Are you about to get burned? There are ways you can tell.
What is “gray market” photo equipment and how does it differ from “U.S. Warranty” equipment? Gray market equipment (also called “parallel import”) is imported into the U.S. but bypasses the official U.S. distributor. Gray market equipment costs less, sometimes a lot less.
Would you rather pay for a print that will fade in as little as 5 or 6 years, or would you rather pay for a better quality print that will last up to 50 years? That’s not all. The print with a very short life expectancy might cost more than the better quality print. People buy short life span prints all the time. Why? Because they don’t have the right information, and they may have no idea that prints have such widely different life spans.
The lab you choose and the kind of file you send to your lab can make a huge difference in the quality of prints you get back. How do you pick a good online photo lab? How do you get the best results from your lab? What color space should you use for your digital files and how do you convert your files to the right color space? How big a print can you make from your digital files?
I get lots of photo questions, and many of them begin with “What is the best . . . .” They usually come from photographers or someone who is shopping for a photographer.
My “best of the best” series recommends the best photo gear, accessories, software, books, DVDs, online photo labs, and a whole lot more. Thanks to the information in these articles I get emails from photographers thanking me for saving them time, frustration, and a lot of money.
This article is published annually in November with regular updates. Most recent update: November 20, 2019.
Marshall Pass is a beautiful fall color drive in southern Colorado, and still pretty much a secret. It does not turn up on most lists of the most beautiful fall color drives in Colorado. It is a beautiful drive with a lot of fall color photo opportunities.
Adorama has announced special offers on new Canon lenses and camera gear. Links follow. If you are a content creator (or want to be), there are some special kits for you.
First of all, 10-14 foot waves lashed by 50 mph winds are dangerous. Do not go out on piers! Stay well back from the shore! Second, this is a great opportunity for some impressive waves against lighthouse photography and today is the day.
There is still plenty of fall color to be found across the country if you know where to go and when. Here are a few great options with links at the end to a lot more options.
Above and below from two different sources are the predicted times for best fall color viewing in Iowa.
You are on a road you have never been on before. You to stop to take a picture which includes a prominent mountain. How do you find out its name?
It was the end of a glorious day in Colorado. The sun was going in and out behind some clouds in the western sky. Before the sun dropped behind a mountain range, it came out of the clouds and lit up this row of aspen. Perfect!
The exposure compensation scale on your camera is one of the keys to mastering exposures, getting better images, and ending up with professional quality colors. This means taking your camera off of full auto mode and taking control of your own exposures.
Today and tomorrow (Saturday and Sunday, September 14 & 15) are the last two days to see the fabulous Claude Monet exhibit at the Kimbell Art Museum in Fort Worth Texas. Over 50 of the best Monet paintings were collected from art museums all around the world. Museums in Paris, Tokyo, Switzerland, the United States, and other countries sent their best late period Monet works for this exhibit. This particular collection of paintings will not be shown again in the United States.
Photographer Chip East was staring intensely at his laptop screen.
It was two weeks after two jetliners had plowed into the towers of the World Trade Center. His good friend, photojournalist Bill Biggart’s body had been recovered from the rubble. His personal effects, including his cameras had been released by authorities to his widow, Wendy.