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Brenda has been writing since grade school. She attended journalism school where she majored in professional writing. She loves to decorate, garden, read and spend time with her Yorkies.

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Brenda Pruitt. Powered by Blogger.

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Blogging Photography Tips: Part II


I was already in love with photography before I started blogging. And then when I discovered blogging, I was able to combine my two greatest loves: writing and photography. A perfect match.

I am always learning. You never stop learning. And that's part of the fun.

That being said, I do not ever use Manual Settings. I find that I'm happy with photos done on Automatic, and never use Flash. 

I'm not trying to talk you out of learning Manual Settings. I'm sure it would enhance my photos. But I'm happy with simple. You have to make that choice for yourself.

Here is my ironclad rule: NEVER USE FLASH. 
It just never makes for a good photo. Turn on lights or use natural light.

Note: All of these photos were taken with a zoom lens. To be specific, it is a Canon Zoon Lens EF-S 55-250mm. And I've had it for at least 7 years.


At the park last week, I was in absolute heaven. Nature all around me.

Now when you stand in front of something like this flowing pond, bend down, stand up, go to the side. Look at the photo op from every possible angle. And take many photos. You can always delete them.

But you learn from every single one.


Always, always keep the background in mind. This is a very simple photo with nothing in front that is all that appealing. But look beyond it. See those little circles of light? This is called bokeh.

Basically, bokeh is the quality of out-of-focus or “blurry” parts of the image rendered by a camera lens – it is NOT the blur itself or the amount of blur in the foreground, or the background of a subject. 


The blur that you are so used to seeing in photography that separates a subject from the background is the result of shallow depth of field and is generally simply called “background blur”. 

The quality and feel of the background/foreground blur and reflected points of light, however, is what photographers call bokeh.

The photo above, years ago I would have never paused in front of. I would have walked right by it. It doesn't look like much. 

But stand there and look at it with your finger lightly pressing down. Focus. Move a bit. Focus. And it's amazing what you might find of interest just by moving a few inches either way.



Photography doesn't have to be all that complicated. It is just like anything else. Practice, practice, practice. And crop, crop, crop.



This pink rose did not look like this straight out of the camera. I cropped, and I cropped to achieve this result.

If you need more clarity, go to your favorite photo editing site (I use Picmonkey). Go to Sharpen and move the bar just a bit to get a bit more clarity. Watch the photo closely as you do this.



Stand and look at the view. If it is not all that compelling, bend down on one knee and get something else in there. Like these bushes. 

One is close and blurred, but that gives texture and interest to the photo. At least I think so!



If you have a body of water, walk around it and try to get something mirrored in the water. Just a few steps either way will make a big difference.



Take every single thing in your sight into consideration. A few fallen leaves. Moss on the rocks. The way the water looks when a fish swishes to and fro. 

This all brings magic to your photos.

If you have questions, please leave them in the comments and I will do my best to answer.

Go out and take pictures! I find it so relaxing and enjoyable.
Cozy Little House
20 Comments
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20 comments:

  1. Brenda, your photographs are beautiful! I admire your eye and skill.

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    Replies
    1. I'm usually an inpatient person. But when I'm in the midst of photographing images, I take my time. I take it all in.

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  2. When I first started blogging, I can honesty say that I knew nothing about photography. Thankfully, my high schooler was taking a class and she fed me the basics! I have to say that I have fallen in love with the process and even though I still have tons to learn, you're right, I have found it to be very relaxing and enjoyable. Your pics are always beautiful!

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  3. I really enjoy photography too even though I am a total amateur. There's just something about it that taps into my creative side. Your pictures are always gorgeous, Brenda!

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    Replies
    1. I'm just self-taught. I look for everything. Texture. The way a couple of leaves look against the landscape. I focus on one thing, then move a bit, and focus again and they change places. One blurs out; the other comes into focus. Great way to find new shots.

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  4. I knew absolutely nothing about photography just a few months ago. I am learning more and more every day. Like you, Brenda, I use the smart setting on my camera. And I hate using the flash!!

    These photos are lovely - my absolute favorite is the fish - the movement in that photo is incredible!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Today at the park I stood, held down the button to focus and swept the landscape looking for great shots while holding it down. Sometimes I get some great ones that way.

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  5. Beautiful photos, Brenda! I really struggle in this area and appreciate the tips!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I went back to that park today. The colors were different than they were just last week. I had a ball! Cheap entertainment!

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  6. Beautiful pictures, what about inside photography? No flash?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. NO flash. Anywhere. I use natural light, lamps, overhead light. Anything but flash.

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  7. I wish you could teach us photography.

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  8. Great tips Brenda! Blogging has helped me pay more attention to how my photos look. Especially the background. I've learned to check for "stuff" like socks, the vacuum cleaner hose or a random kid walking by :-) It's so frustrating when a picture looks great except for a little thing that I missed. As for lighting, I love auto!!! I had to learn a little bit about manual to take photos inside the house. It's still tricky but I manage. I have better success if I use my tripod when I'm on manual. My son just installed light room on my computer. II don't think it's user friendly. Or maybe it's just me... Do you use filters or edit any of your photos? That's where I need help. My photos are okay but I think they lack something?? Crispness maybe.

    ReplyDelete
  9. Great tips Brenda! Blogging has helped me pay more attention to how my photos look. Especially the background. I've learned to check for "stuff" like socks, the vacuum cleaner hose or a random kid walking by :-) It's so frustrating when a picture looks great except for a little thing that I missed. As for lighting, I love auto!!! I had to learn a little bit about manual to take photos inside the house. It's still tricky but I manage. I have better success if I use my tripod when I'm on manual. My son just installed light room on my computer. II don't think it's user friendly. Or maybe it's just me... Do you use filters or edit any of your photos? That's where I need help. My photos are okay but I think they lack something?? Crispness maybe.

    ReplyDelete
  10. Great post. I really need to buy a good camera and learn.

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  11. I'll have to agree with you on 'No Flash'. I never ever use it either since it just gives such a harsh look to the photo and you can always tell that it's a 'flash' photo. We have a naturally dark interior to our home due to all windows being on the north and south sides of our house, and both sides have a covered porch, so the light is limited. But do I use a flash? Nope.... I simply open up every single drape/curtain and turn on as many lamps and overhead lights and then take the shot. I REALLY dislike flash photos. Oh, and also, if I am not getting the clarity I want... on my pocket camera, I simply aim, depress the button halfway and allow it to focus, and THEN take the shot, sometimes I get more clarity. Another trick if taking an outdoor shot and not getting the light you want, point the camera to the sky, depress button lightly and then lower the camera to what it is you are taking a photo of and snap the shot. This sometimes adds light to an outdoor photo on a cloudy day... I have both a pocket camera and a dslr Canon Rebel and usually use my pocket camera. Another thing to think about in getting a better photo is to check your battery. When a battery starts to wear out, even when fully charged you may not get a good photo. Just a few ideas. xo

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  12. I love the last photo of the fish! Beautiful pictures and great tips!

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  13. I like to call myself a natural light photographer...but once in a while I have to turn on a lamp. Me too. I loved photography before I began blogging. Fun fun fun! Sheila

    ReplyDelete

I always enjoy reading your comments and having you join the conversation here at Cozy Little House. It is like having a gathering of friends sitting in my cozy apartment. Enjoying coffee and dessert, chatting and having a good time. I appreciate each and every one of you!

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