Simple Cropping Trick Makes Great Portraits

A Club Member called who had a nice landscape picture of her child’s ball field, but she wanted a vertical portrait of her child in the field.

This cropping trick makes it easy to capture a perfect portrait from a wide image, or a group photo from a tall image.

Here’s how:

  1. Tap the photo, and then the pencilicon (the photo editor) in the upper left.
  2. Choose the Crop tool from the edit bar.
  3. Choose the ratio for the photo you want to print. If you’re printing a 5×7, choose 7:5.
  4. Tap the 7:5 box again, and, voile!, it becomes a 5:7 vertical slice of the image. You can grab the middle of the crop area and move the rectangle, or grab the corner to further shrink your image.
  5. Now choose Apply, Save and Save as a New Image.
You have both the original photo and the new vertical image that’s perfect for your portrait!

People don’t like looking at selfies

A study reports that, while many people like taking selfies, other people don’t like to look at them. That’s not surprising since most of us, when presented with a group photo, will find our own image in the group first.

Participants expressed a distanced attitude toward selfies, with stronger agreement for potential negative consequences (threats to self-esteem, illusionary world) than for positive consequences (relatedness, independence), and a clear preference (82%) for viewing more usual pictures instead of selfies in social media.

Read the study

Great photos from the 2016 Olympics

Great Photos from the 2016 Summer Olympics

The Summer Olympics always have so many memorable moments and TV coverage is so limited that we rarely get to see the moments of true glory, the great teams and the celebrations in the surrounding country.

It turns out that Getty Images has dedicated an entire section of its website to the best photos it could obtain from the 2016 Summer Olympic Games.

Each of the photos on this linked page starts up a slide show dedicated to the topic represented by the image. Here are a few to stimulate you interest.

First the star performers with Michael Phelps at the center and surrounded by topics associated with the Games but not the sports themselves.

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Next we see teams led by the USA Gymnasts who won the Gold.

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And one more photo to tempt you to visit the Getty page. A spectacular mural created in Rio.

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To see the entire beautiful collection visit the Getty images site at the link below.

http://www.gettyimages.com/sports/olympics

Let us know what you think.
Walter Krieg
wkrieg@dotphoto.com
www.dotphoto.com

25 best FREE online photo courses

25 Best FREE Online Photo Courses

I started the New Year by looking for information that could be helpful to our clients and readers. One thing I always find myself interested in is learning about the art of taking photos. I went looking for topics I could learn inexpensively and came across this article that describes 25 photo courses that are…FREE!

What I like about many of them is that they are always available and quite a few are from university sources like the first one below.

Truth be known I’m not a very good photographer. I use my mobile phone for most of my shots. But in reviewing the recommended courses a few focused on things I believe can even help an amateur like me. Here they are:

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For Beginners

Introduction to Photography and Related Media: Video lectures from a semester-long undergraduate-level course at MIT. Covers the fundamentals of analog and digital SLR, film exposure and development, darkroom techniques, digital imaging, and studio lighting.
Level: Beginner | Duration: Self-paced | Always Available

Basics of Photography: The Complete Guide: A comprehensive resource for beginning photographers, compiled by the friendly folks at Lifehacker. Starts by explaining how a digital camera works and goes on to explain image composition, technique, and editing. Mostly in text format, interspersed with a few explanatory videos.
Level: Beginner | Duration: Self-paced | Always Available

Cambridge in Colour: A great site for beginners to browse tutorials and have their questions answered by a community of learners. And no, that extra “u” in “Colour” is not a typo — this is Cambridge, UK we’re talking about!
Level: Beginner | Duration: Self-paced | Always Available

Strobist: Perhaps the most popular resource for beginners to learn how to use light and their flashes, especially their Lighting 101 course that many photographers swear by.
Level: Beginner to Intermediate | Duration: Self-paced | Always Available

This next course and the ones that follow are more specific.

Pixels After Dark: Shooting the Night: An outstanding talk by three-time Olympic photographer Jeff Cable on shooting images at night.
Level: Intermediate | Duration: 1.5 hours | Always Available

The Art of Photography: This course from Australia’s RMIT University covers both the academic and practical aspects of photography. Instructor Dr. Shane Hulbert, an artist-academic whose work has been shown in Victoria’s National Gallery, covers photography as a visual art practice, explores the work of contemporary photographers, and introduces the idea of a “digital darkroom”.
Level: Beginner | Duration: 4 weeks | Next Start Date: April 28, 2014 was when it was first offered and is still shown in the listing

Documentary Photography and Photojournalism: Still Images of a World in Motion: Want to be the next Steve McCurry? This MIT course for budding photojournalists course requires some prior background in photography, e.g. knowing the difference between f stops and T stops, and being able to find one’s way around a camera.
Level: Intermediate | Duration: 4 weeks | Always Available

I think you can see from these courses I’ve listed that there is quite a bit you can learn. Let me also tell you that one of the items offers a link to Udemy to learn to set up a smugmug photo website. Well, we here at dotPhoto also offer our members a photo website that’s FREE… and we’ll help you build it. You can learn about creating your dotPhoto website here:
https://dotphoto.freshdesk.com/support/solutions/articles/93860-what-is-mywebsite-how-can-i-change-the-photo-on-mywebsite-

You’ll have to become a member to take advantage of the website creation, but once you become a member… and it’s FREE to join… you’re welcome to compare the services and let us know what you think.

You’ll find all the recommended courses mentioned above and more at this address:
https://petapixel.com/2014/07/03/best-free-online-photography-courses-tutorials/

One more thing, at the end of the article there’s mention of a TED talk about “impossible” photography, but the link didn’t show up for me. If that happens to you here’s the link: https://www.ted.com/talks/erik_johansson_impossible_photography

Contact us if you like.
Walter Krieg
wkrieg@dotphoto.com
http://www.dotphoto.com

A guide to capturing photo dimensions & cropping

A Guide to Photography in National Parks… Vast Dimensions and Cropping

A while back we published a number of approaches to the “where and how” of street photography. The techniques that we reviewed were interesting and useful for the type of photography usually associated with cityscapes and the places we visit in cities. Since then I’ve been wondering about the types of photos we might take in open spaces where the view is wider and deeper.

This week I searched about and came across an article that focused on taking photos in the vast domain of National Parks. The lesson presented was directed at how to capture the dimensions of the views found there, and, as opposed to capturing personality, varying light settings and changing focus, the lessons were aimed at how wide and high to make the photos and when to crop them…a seemingly much different and appropriate emphasis on what to concentrate on.

However, as I read through the article I saw that there were ways of looking at the advice that would be appropriate for any type of photography. And our writer, Rebecca Latson, got me thinking more broadly when she shared this with us, “Focus and subject are the two keys. Are you happy with the original image, or would you like to place a little more emphasis on some particular item within your image?” That spoke to just about every photo I take.

Where Ms. Latson then takes us is through two distinct methods we can employ to get the most from our shots, Landscape vs. Portrait modes as we take the photos, and the use of a cropping tool once we have them.

First let’s take a look at using Landscape vs. Portrait.

First a landscape view.

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And now the same scene in Portrait mode

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I think that both have attractive features and emphasis. How do you feel?

Next let’s take a look at the results of cropping. First without cropping.

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And now the same photo cropped.

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It looks to me as though the emphasis in the uncropped photo is on the breadth of the mountains and the lake in front while on the cropped photo the focus is on the sun topped distant hills and the clear blue sky, a different emphasis. Yet both have their appeal.

Ms. Latson offers other examples of the two styles and her suggestions and reasons for both. See for yourself.

The article can be reached through the link below.
http://www.nationalparkstraveler.com/2016/08/photography-national-parks-twofer-crop-or-not-crop-and-horizontal-vs-vertical

Let us know what you think.

Walter Krieg
wkrieg@dotphoto.com
http://www.dotphoto.com

Impressive and unusual photography collections

Impressive Unusual Photography Collections, and How to Create Them

Here at dotPhoto we subscribe to many regular publications, notices and updates that cover a truly wide range of photography topics. And although I personally look forward to reviewing many of these publications, I’ve become a bit skeptical of the claims they often make in their headlines. Superlatives are everywhere. You’ve probably noticed yourself how often terms like “the best”, “the finest”, “the greatest”, and of course “awesome” are used to grab your attention. It’s gotten to the point that I pay very little, if any, attention to the headlines and titles of articles. So I smiled the other day when an article I was reviewing had a link entitled “The Ultimate Photography Roundup”. Then I started reading…

I don’t know about “ultimate” but I have to admit to being very impressed with a number of the unusual collections and the tips they offered on taking these types of photos. I’m going to share five collections I genuinely enjoyed and think there’s a good chance you might enjoy at least a few of them as well.

The first type of photography to view is High Speed Photography which seems to freeze time. A few samples and the link for you to see more follow…

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You’ll find the link entitled Celebration Of High-Speed Photography in the reviewed article points to https://www.smashingmagazine.com/2008/11/when-time-freezes-50-beautiful-examples-of-freeze-photography/ where you’ll see beautiful examples of high-speed photography.

Next we’ll take a look at a type of photography I never before experienced, Tilt-Shift Photography. Tilt-Shift Photography is a process in which a photograph of a life-sized location or object is manipulated so that it looks like a photograph of a miniature-scale model. Here’s what it looks like and where you can see more.

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The link in our article, 50 Beautiful Examples Of Tilt-Shift Photography, takes you here. https://www.smashingmagazine.com/2008/11/beautiful-examples-of-tilt-shift-photography/

Next we’ll take a look at Motion Blur Photography. Motion Blur is frequently used to show a sense of speed.

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Our parent article has a link to 45 Beautiful Motion Blur Photos. It takes you here:

https://www.smashingmagazine.com/2008/08/45-beautiful-motion-blur-photos/

Next we take a look at photos where smoke plays a big role. Some subjects you go looking for and others you create yourself.

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See more in the link in our article entitled Smoke Photography and Smoke Art which takes you here: https://www.smashingmagazine.com/2008/10/celebration-of-smoke-photography-and-smoke-art/

And finally another unusual type of photography covered in the main article is Macro Photography. Macro photography is the art of taking close-up pictures that reveal details which can’t be seen with the naked eye.

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I hope the quality of the photos above gives you some idea of why I was impressed with these out of the ordinary types of photos. The main article referenced here can be seen at: https://www.smashingmagazine.com/2009/04/the-ultimate-photography-round-up/

It also points out impressive examples of Black and White Photography, Night Photography and a few others. But I thought I’d let you visit the article and explore those collections for yourself.

Let us know what you think.

Walter Krieg
wkrieg@dotphoto.com
http://www.dotphoto.com

Celebrate the new year around the world

New Year’s Eve – Midnight Around the World – Photos from 2015

Searches for New Year Photo Articles led me to an article that captured photos of New Year’s Eve 2015 from many, many places around the world. I’ll show you a few right here, and I truly believe you’ll find the photos in the article enjoyable and educational as you see how other nations ring in the New Year.

Let’s start with a photo from our own NY Times Square as the fireworks go off! This photo is from Andrew Burton and Getty Images.

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Next we’ll look at how they welcome the New Year in London a few hours before our celebration in New York begins. This photo is by John Phillips and Getty Images for Unicef.

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And for one more tempting photo let’s take a peek at what it looks like in a country that’s about as far from the Western World as one can get. We see Fireworks light up Hong Kong’s skyline. Our photographer is Philippe Lopez for AFP and Getty Images.

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The article and more brilliant New Year’s eve photos can be reached through the link below.

https://www.theguardian.com/world/gallery/2015/dec/31/new-years-eve-2016-celebrations-in-pictures

Let us know what you think.

Happy New Year!

Walter Krieg
wkrieg@dotphoto.com
http://www.dotphoto.com