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    I L E X

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    Chapter 3_Color

    White Balance Made Simple 54

    Look for the Gray 56

    Color Target for Total Accuracy 58

    Custom White Balance 60

    Check on a Laptop 61

    Impact from Color Contrast 62 Subtlety from a Restrained Palette 63

    Unified Color 64

    Shooting for Black-and-White 66

    Chapter 4_Technicals

    Customize Your Settings 70

    Dust Check 71

    Clean Your Own Sensor 72

    100% Sharpness Check 74

    Repairing Poor Focus 76

    Really Sharp Focus 78

    Know Your Steadiness Limit 80

    Improve Your Steadiness 82

    How to Hold a Camera 83

    How to Squeeze the Shutter Release 86

    Carry a Tripod 87

    When Tripods Are Forbidden 88

    Instant Weatherproofing 89

    Cold Weather Handling 90

    Heat and Dust 91

    Chapter 5_Composition

    Compose for Contrast 94

    Dynamic Placement 96

    Dynamic Division 98

    Simplify 100

    The Essence in Detail 101

    Shapes Organize 102

    Basic Triangles 103

    Diagonals Move 104

    Curves Flow 106

    Vertical Virtues 107

    Look for Rhythm 108 Try Motion Blur 109

    Alignments 110

    Juxtaposition 112

    Wide-angle Involvement 114

    Telephoto Detachment 115

    Wide-angle for Dynamics 116

    Telephoto to Fill the Frame 117

    Chapter 6_Stitching

    StitchingDigitals Specialty 120

    Stitch Big 121

    Stitch Wide 122

    Efficient Overlaps 124

    Keep the Settings Consistent 125

    Finding the Nodal Point 126

    Chapter 7_Multi-shot

    BracketingThe Safety Net 130

    Aligned Sequences 131

    Blending Exposures 132

    HDRFrom Workhorse to Weird 134

    Simple HDR Capture 136

    One Light, Many Directions 138

    Noise-Removal Sequences 140

    High-Low ISO Blending 142

    Crowd-Removal Sequences 144

    Infinite Depth of Field 146

    Make Movies 147

    Chapter 8_Low-Light

    Right Camera, Right Sensor 150 Decide Your Priorities 151

    Noise Reduction 152

    Know Your Cameras Noise Potential153

    Ad Hoc Supports 154

    Fast Lenses 155

    Shoot for Detail, Not for Smooth 156

    Hand-held or Locked Down 158

    Noise Depends on Image Size 159

    Night Shooting GearHand-held 160

    Night Shooting GearTripod 161

    Chapter 9_Processing

    Assemble the Right Software 164

    Anticipate the Processing 165

    Raw Converters Are Not Equal 166

    Recovering Highlights and Shadows 168

    Caption and Keyword 170

    Managing EXIF Data 171

    Glossary 172

    Index 174

    Acknowledgments 176

    Chapter 1_Basics

    Just Shoot 10

    It Happens Only Once 11

    Shoot Raw 12

    Shoot for the Future 14

    Prepare, Forget, Shoot 15

    Back Up Constantly 16

    Workflow Questions You Should Ask 18

    Work Out Your Own Workflow 19

    Situational Awareness 22

    Stay with the Situation 23

    Explore the Subject 24

    For Candid, Shoot Blind 25

    Give Chance a Chance 26

    If Youre Uncertain About Permission 27

    Chapter 2_Exposure

    Know Your Dynamic Range 30

    Know the Scene Dynamic Range 32

    When Good Histograms Go Bad 34

    Be Histogram-Literate 36

    Shoot for the Highlights 38

    Choose the Key 40

    Low-Process Settings 42

    A Touch of Flash 44

    Backlighting Solutions 46

    Reliable Portrait Lighting 48

    Reliable Product Lighting 50

    Contents

    Michael Freemans 101 Top Digital Photography Tips

    First published in the UK in 2008 by

    I L E X

    The Old Candlemakers

    West Street

    Lewes

    East Sussex BN7 2NZ

    www.ilex-press.com

    Copyright 2008 The Ilex Press Limited

    Publisher: Alastair Campbell

    Creative Director: Peter Bridgewater

    Managing Editor: Chris Gatcum

    Editor: Nick Jones

    Art Director: Julie Weir

    Designers: Jon Allen

    Design Assistant: Emily Harbison

    Any copy of this book issued by the publisher is sold subject to

    the condition that it shall not by way of trade or otherwise be lent,

    resold, hired out or otherwise circulated without the publishers prior

    consent in any form of binding or cover other than that in which it

    is published and without a similar condition including these words

    being imposed on a subsequent purchaser.

    British Library Cataloguing-in-Publication Data

    A catalogue record for this book is available from

    the British Library.

    ISBN 13: 978-1-905814-34-3

    All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced or

    used in any form, or by any means graphic, electronic or mechani-

    cal, including photocopying, recording or information storage-and-

    retrieval systems without the prior permission of the publisher.

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    With all the technical invention that goes into

    cameras, lenses, and the software needed

    to process images, you might be forgiven for

    thinking that photography is on a never-ending

    path to complexity. Digital capture seems to have

    unleashed quantities of information, techniques,

    controls, and features that we never knew we

    needed. And thats just itthe huge number of

    possibilities opened up by digital now threatens

    to swamp photographers in a morass of menu

    choices, buttons, mouse clicks, and, well, sheer

    exasperating detail.

    Introduction

    I wont pretend that you can ignore all the

    technological advances and demands on your

    attention, but I can make a stab at cutting through

    the information overload. Here, in as simple and

    direct a manner as I can think of, are what I believe

    are the essentials for shooting.

    At the end of the day, photography is about

    the act of taking picturesyou, the camera, and

    the subject youre facing. Just that.

    Ilex_Instant

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    Chapter_

    Basics

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    Chapter 01_

    The subtitle for thisshould be never rely on

    returning. This is one of those painfully obvious

    pieces of advice that call for one or two bad

    experiences to bring home the truth. Most

    photography is about the moment, and even

    though it may seem to matter less in some kinds

    (studio still life) than others (sports), it permeates

    just about everything. Even a landscape, which you

    might think is relatively static, has the dynamics of

    lighting and sky and possibly some other moving

    elements. The timescale is definitely not the same

    as in street photography, but even so, one moment

    for a landscape is not the same as the next.

    If anything, the dangers of waiting might begreater for slow, fairly static subjects, simply

    because they dont seem urgent in any way.

    Planning a shot and thinking it through is a great

    idea, but every so often youll be surprised,

    unpleasantly, that time was not standing still for

    you and the situation didnt get better. Its very easy

    to come across a scene, check it out, and predict

    that it should look great when the light changes

    just so, or the clouds move, or maybe tomorrow

    morning when the shadows will be falling the

    other way. Bit its always maybe.

    Better insurance is to shoot the scene the way

    it caught your eye at the time. Apart from the time it

    takes to do this, there is no loss. You can still come

    back at sunrise or whenever, but if that doesnt work

    out you will at least have something already shot.

    2 Arriving late in the afternoon at the mountaintopoverlooking this volcano in Costa Rica I saw that the clouds

    were beginning to close in, so rushed back to t he rental

    car to get the camerasand found that Id locked the keys

    inside. By the time I found them (worse, they werent in

    the car after all, but in my pocket), we were all shrouded in

    cloud. Sheer stubbornness kept me there for three days

    until