You Got A New Camera - Part One

Congratulations! That’s awesome. Either this is your first serious camera and you are itching to turn it into your best friend, or it’s an upgrade from your trusted pal that will help unlock more creativity and experience. Whatever brought this new joy into your life, there are a few things that you can do to make the new addition more fun and garner more success sooner.

Two Filters Every Serious Photographer Must Have

When we were shooting film, particularly black and white film, we carried pouches filled with filters because making the light adjustment had to be done at time of capture. With today’s amazing digital post processing, filters have to a large extent gone the way of the dinosaur and the dodo, fondly remembered but not widely used.

Shooting RAW

At some point in our photographic journey we hear the Saga of RAW vs JPEG. It’s a popular refrain, so let’s look at the benefits of each, starting with RAW in this article. RAW means not processed. When we look at the LCD on our camera, or at the pictures on our smartphone, we are seeing processed images.

You’ve possibly heard what I call the JPEG Death March. If you shoot JPEG, you give up all control. If you shoot JPEG you cannot make real changes to your images. If you shoot JPEG, the world will end! Okay, maybe not the last one, but you get the point. None of these or similar statements are true. To understand where JPEG fits, let’s take a look at what JPEG was built for and what it really is today.

With the holiday season approaching, many photographers are hoping for the gift of a reliable tripod that they will actually use. I wanted to share my learning about the new Cameron CF700BH tripod with this in mind. A tripod that goes unused is worthless. After over forty years as a photographer, and nearly ten years as a photographic educator, I’ve learned that photographers avoid using a tripod for three reasons.

It’s a fact that the closer you are to your sound source you intend to record, the better the audio and less editing you’ll have to do down the road. This chapter outlines some techniques and tips on using boom mics to do such a task. The length of the boompole is generally dependent on the type of production. Poles for commercial projects like TV, commercials or feature films typically range from 12 to 15 feet. Documentary-style projects like you see on reality TV and the news typically range from 5 to 8 feet.

Some Truths About Tripods

That a tripod is an asset is a given. Great tripods take away the challenge of camera shake. They provide a firm compositional platform so you can spend more time thinking about the story your image is going to tell and setting up the image just right. They remove a lot of concerns about shutter speed, aperture and ISO, affording you the flexibility to make the decisions in the exposure triangle and in lens choice by reducing the constraints created by dim light, long focal length, the need for massive depth of field and the need to allow for motion blur.

Cameron HSS240 TTL Flash Triggers

Shortly after we get our first speed light style flash, we realize that photos made with the flash mounted on the camera can look flat and harsh. So we want to get the flash off the camera. Fortunately many OEMs build some type of remote control capability into some of their cameras, but sadly not into all of them. This type of remote control uses the pop-up flash to communicate to the remotes via Infrared signalling. When it works, it’s awesome, but as this mode requires a direct line of sight between the camera and the other flashes, there’s an element of chance of failure.

Cameron W700HS Flash for Nikon or Canon

Photographers often have a love/hate relationship with flash. I love flash and use it a great deal. Others find it hard to use and avoid it like it was toxic.  I cannot fix that for you here, but I can tell you about two new flashes, available exclusively at Henry’s that will do a great job for you, both on and off camera.