Top 5 Travel Photography Tips

Traveling is a fantastic opportunity to look at the world through a whole new perspective.

Whether you’re traveling a few hours away or across the world, a change of scenery gives budding photographers a chance to get some great shots.

Tip 1: Travel light

Even if you’re only going a few hours away (and maybe especially then), you don’t need to pack your fifteen lenses, four flash diffusers, and seven tripods. One or two lenses are all you need; one renowned travel photographer doesn’t even travel with a camera bag or lens cap, just a strap around his neck.

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He feels that the seconds lost getting ready for a shot are seconds too precious to be wasted. You don’t want to be bogged down switching between lenses while you’re traveling; just pick one or two multipurpose lenses and go.

Tip 2: Research, research, research

Do all your homework before you go. Research where you’re going, how to use your camera, everythingbeforeyou go. If you aren’t comfortable with your equipment, your subjects will be able to tell, and they may not feel as comfortable with you.

If you can, connect with local photographers at your destination. They know the terrain better than you do, and they can direct you to local newspapers and sites to get you off the beaten path.

Tip 3: Trust your instincts

Establishing good relationships as soon as possible is vital to your safety. Particularly for female photographers, the key is to blend in. Women may want to wear a headscarf in certain destinations, and demure, nondescript clothing is best for everyone.

Avoid looking like the stereotypical photographer with baggy cargo pants or a vest stuffed with things; you’re traveling light anyway.

Tip 4: Remember it’s about the people

Unless you’re a purely landscape photographer, most of your shots will involve people. Gaining the trust of the people around you is crucial. Making friends with the leaders in whatever community you find yourself in will also help expand your horizons.

When you show that you trust and respect the community leaders, doors open all around you. Being friendly and open with the people around you will give you much better results, and you’ll have a much more genuine experience.

You’ll probably have a lot more fun too. Locals know the most interesting off-the-beaten-path places that you’d never find otherwise.

Tip 5: Don’t forget to experience the trip

Don’t get so caught up in taking pictures that you forget to look up from the lens and actually experience your trip.

The pictures will come, but looking around and taking in the whole experience will be a lot more meaningful than just peering through your viewfinder the whole time.

That genuineness will come across in your photos, and you’ll have a better trip. Win-win for everyone!

So do your homework before you leave and remember that relationships are vital. It doesn’t matter how far you’re going, if you keep these tips in mind, you’re sure to have a great trip, and get some great pictures.

Happy travels!

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5 Other Jobs for Photographers

Maybe your dream has always been to earn a living solely from photography, but that is just not working out for you.

Maybe you would like to keep photography as a hobby and would rather do something else as your main job.

Whatever the reason, if you are looking for a different job instead of working as a photographer, there are options out there for you.

There is certainly something out there that will make you happy and leave you feeling satisfied.

There is definitely something out there that will help you to feel that your life is all that you want it to be.

You can open your eyes to the options that are available when it comes to the jobs that are out there for photographers, and you will find that there is something out there with your name on it.

5 Other Jobs for Photographers

1. You could open up an art studio. If you are into the artistry part of being a photographer, then you will find that another job that includes art in it will make you happy and leave you feeling satisfied.

When you open up an art studio, you get to work in the world of art every single day. When you open up a studio, you get to encourage others to be artistic, as well.

2. You could become a massage therapist and open up a massage business. If you are looking for the kind of job that will allow you to help out others, then the job of a massage therapist is something that you should consider.

If you are looking to help others relax and more fully enjoy their lives, you can do that when you work in the massage therapy field. Choosing the best massage therapist can be a great career choice.

3. You could become a teacher. Whether you want to be an art teacher, a photography teacher, or a special education teacher, being a teacher will allow you to touch those around you. When you are a teacher, you have the opportunity to change lives.

When you work as a teacher, you will be able to encourage and support children who will look up to you for advice.

4. You could become a carpenter. If you enjoy working with your hands, then you might want to consider becoming a carpenter and tackling the kinds of home improvement tasks that individuals and families need completed.

You can help to fix up homes, work on remodels, or even build from the ground up.

5. You could work in the restaurant industry. If food is something that you are passionate about, then the restaurant industry may be for you.

Whether you want to make food or simply help to serve it, working around food all day can make for an interesting and fun career choice.

You don’t have to be simply a photographer. There are other job options out there for you. Keep your eyes open, and you will be able to find a job that is satisfying to you.

You will be able to find something that makes you happy and pays well.

5 Hobbies other than Photography

Photography is my #1 passion, but that doesn’t mean I don’t have other interests.

Since a few people have asked me to write about the other things I do in my free time, I thought that this would make for a fun post.

5 Hobbies Other Than Photography

1. Poker. A game that addicts the players that already has hundreds of players across the world, whether they want to play for fun with their friends or if they want to play in a far more serious manner in those tournaments or competitions that are regularly shown.

But generally poker players are people who merely want to play for fun with their friends. They enjoy getting together and playing a few rounds because it’s fun, it gets you out of the house, and you generally have a great time.

True poker playing requires a lot of skill, and a big learning curve. One of the best poker ebooks I’ve read about playing the game is called Postflop.

It’s devoted to postflop play and really is a terrific read if you are wanting to learn more. You can find out more about the book here.

2. Writing. Reading a book can make you ask “can I do better?” or “can I write something just as great?” This is a great hobby, it exercises your writing and literacy skills, but it can also lead to something more.

Newbie writers should be advised to attend a writer’s group. These are usually free, they are hosted by experienced writers who are willing to showcase their field to new writers.

Many writer’s groups work on themes once or twice a month, and they usually set out homework so it’s a bit like school, based on those themes.

Some groups even have public demonstrations during fairs, so being a member of a writer’s group has the advantage of you reading out your work to an audience.

Being a member of a group will allow others to read your work, comment on it and advise you on how to improve upon it.

3. Painting & other artworks. Like writing, painting and other forms of artwork such as sculpture or drawing, are amazing hobbies to occupy anybody’s time. There is a lot to offer; art can exercise people’s creativity, drawing and painting skills, and exercise observational skills.

Do you have a room that you can turn into an artist’s studio? That’s a great place to start if you want to use real watercolors, store canvases or sketchbooks.

But there is also a digital artwork that you can get into, so the field is getting just as broad to enhance people’s ideas of what hobbies are.

4. Cycling. Perfect for people who enjoy bike riding, taking long trips on a bike is a great hobby, whether you are racing in a competition or just cycling with friends.

5. Urban exploration. A truly unique and unexpected hobby in this list, urban exploration is the examination of normally unseen parts of civilizations,like abandoned buildings, underground stations that have been closed off. It can be a hobby for kids who explore old factories marked as storage, and later they move on to more cool examples.

But this hobby can be very dangerous; since you are wandering into territory that is largely unknown there’s the risk you could be injured without anyone knowing where you are, and there could be dangerous people about.

All of the hobbies listed here are only five examples of what you and other people can do in their spare time; urban exploration might be seen as too risky, but it sounds really interesting and you can learn more about the personal history of the area you live in.

Other hobbies listed here; writing and artwork are but two examples of hobbies that can exercise your creative talents even if you haven’t painted or written anything since school or college, but they are excellent hobbies to indulge in.

Tips And Tricks To Photograph People of Mixed Skin Tones

When you take pictures, for fun or for professional settings, you want your subjects to look like themselves when you print the images.

This can often be difficult when you have subjects with different skin tones posing for you.

It is difficult at times to achieve a balance in the end result of your images but not impossible.

Five tips for taking pictures of people with mixed skin tones:

* Clothing- it is best for people with dark complexion not to wear white clothing if it is possible. There will be situations where this is not possible. Wedding are a good example of the biggest exception where not wearing white is not possible.

For pictures outside of the wedding category it is a good idea for the people who want their photos taken to try a few different outfits. You may want to suggest to those with darker complexions to stay away from light colors. The outfits they choose will give a good idea of the type of setting you’ll need also.

* Lights- Shooting photos in the early morning or in the evening as the sun is setting provides magical photo shots. Photos taken in the afternoon should be done in shaded areas if possible to erase any competition between the natural light and the subject’s skin.

If these conditions are not possible then fill flash is another option. Fill flash is a technique used by photographers to make deep shadow areas brighter. The fill flash technique is even possible with the simple point-and-shoot cameras under the fill flash mode. When using this mode it forces the flash to fire even if in bright light.

* Skin exposure- when taking a photo of a darker complexioned subject you should focus on their face and let the rest of the picture fall into place. When they have complimentary clothing on, getting the perfect skin tone should be what you concentrate on to eliminate some of your post processing.

Make sure to check yourself for skin conditions too. Vitiligo diagnosis is especially important in being able to catch it before it develops.

Post processing would be enhancing or altering your photo after it has been taken. With the use of digital cameras there is software to use to enhance photos before printing them.

* Balance white and dark skin tones- in situations like a wedding where your subjects will be wearing lighter clothing you should shoot your photos in RAW so the whites can be toned down during post processing.

A RAW image is sometimes called digital negatives. They fill the same role as a negative in photography as a negative is not usable as an image. The stored RAW image can later be edited to balance the colors and other aspects of the photo.

* Aim for the mid-range for mixed skin tones- if the subjects you are photographing all have a varied skin tone, aim for the one with the mid-range tone. If you aim for the one with the mid-range tone you can adjust the differences in post processing.

It is important that the lightest subject not appear to light and the darkest subject not appear to dark- it needs to be balanced. White areas will reflect more light then black areas will. What happens then is the light reflects back to your camera setting the exposure for one in the middle.

Light meters:
When you shoot for the middle of the road or the mid-range subject in skin tone you are using what is referred to as, reflective light meter exposure. Your camera is the reflective meter. It doesn’t matter what the light source is, when light hits the subject, it will reflect off.

The color you have focused on and sometimes the material impact how much of the light will reflect. Since we know white areas reflect more, this is considered the tone to focus more on to obtain a more balance exposure in your photo.

The other type of light meter is the, incident light meter. The incident light meter is a hand held meter outside of the camera. These meters are mostly used in studios but they can work with any light source.

An incident light meter will measure the amount of light that hits a subject. This means is will measure the light before it hits the subject and is not affected by skin tones of the subjects.

The measurement will mean the light hitting each subject is properly exposed for color as well as light in the photo.

To start getting the right exposure for your photos you have to start by taking control of your camera. To get this control take your camera off the manual setting and familiarize yourself with its settings.

When you get to know your camera and the various metering methods you can control through it, you are one step closer to becoming a great photographer.

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5 Ways to Promote Your Photography Blog

Photography can be a very lucrative venture if you know how to get people to hire you for their events.

Unfortunately, many photographers are unable to bring in more business despite possessing exceptional photography skills and a photography blog.

If this explains your business, then this guide will look at the top 5 ideas that will help in promoting your blog.

Invest in Business Cards

Business cards are some of the most effective marketing options. If you have not invested in them yet, then consider going for these 2.5×3.5 rectangular pieces, or investing in a printer that will do this for you.

When coming up with your business card, it is imperative that you tailor it to match your brand, style and target market. You should also go beyond just having your recent photos on the card and make use of the cover.

Think about including innovative ideas such as photography tips at the back and your blog’s URL to guide people there.

Leverage Social Media

Social media is an exceptional marketing tool, and it is absolutely free. However, it can also be a time waster if you do not plan your time carefully.

Your ideal clients are using Facebook, Twitter and Google+ meaning that you also need profiles on these platforms not just to reach them but also lead them to your blog. To rock social media, consider:

**Posting pictures regularly
**Engaging with your followers with hashtags
**Using pinnable images

When making these posts, do not solely focus on photography. There are very many other topics that you can share with your social media community to keep them interested in your business.

Give Referral Discounts

When someone tells you about splendid services that they received somewhere, you will also make an effort to visit the place to. That is how powerful word of mouth referrals are.

Your business can also benefit from these referrals if you introduce something that will make current customers want to bring in new ones via your blog.

Depending on the number of referrals brought, you can even have a grand prize of a free professional photo session.

Doing that will certainly go a long way in marketing your services while also promoting your photography blog.

Embrace Email Marketing

Email marketing can also be a valuable marketing tool that also helps in creating awareness about your blog if implemented correctly. Forget about buying email lists.

You should build your own list since it makes it easy to capture people who have real interest in your services. By constantly sending them information about your products and offers, you will be able to convert some if not all of them.

Provided you include the blog’s link in the emails, you will also direct substantial traffic to it.

Partake in Charity Events

Photography is an art and also a gift. By donating your services to people who really need them, you are also strengthening your brand image. If there is an even at your local church, offer to take photos for free.

As you present the pictures to the church, find a way to market your services by referring people to your blog for more pictures and information about your business.

Join Forums and Post on Other Blogs

Forums are an important source of information. People visit them when they have a problem that needs fixing and if you join 2 or even 3 photography forums, you can share the link to your blog with other members.

Other than just forums, consider posting guest articles on other people’s blogs and back linking them to yours. This can also be effective in marketing your business provided you choose blogs that are in line with yours.

Growing your photography business may not be hard after all. As long as you employ these marketing ideas, you will be able to see more clients asking about your services.

5 Wedding Shots You Don’t Want to Miss

When you are capturing a wedding in pictures, there are a lot of shots that you want to make sure to catch. When you are the one in charge of photography for a wedding, there are a lot of special moments that you want to catch.

There is so much to take in at a wedding, and so much that needs to be captured by the photographer. In the midst of the excitement and the busyness, there are some shots that you just don’t want to miss. In addition to the obvious shots, there are many more that need to be caught.

5 Wedding Shots You Don’t Want to Miss as a Photographer:

1. The bride being given away by her father. When the bride walks down the aisle, there will be many who will be snapping her picture. As the photographer, you want to catch a picture of the bride making her way down the aisle, but you also want to catch the special moment where her father is giving her away. You want to snap a picture of the emotional moment at the end of the aisle when the bride is given from her father to the groom.

2. The guests making their way out of the ceremony. There will be many who will be emotional when the wedding is finished and it is time to leave the building where the ceremony took place. As a photographer, you want to capture the emotion that is on the faces of the guests as they are leaving. You want to catch the happy faces and the tears.

Some of the best pictures you can get are with little kids and their parents. One shot I got had some poor tired mom, carrying the best diaper bag for you over her shoulder, trying to hold her kid with one arm, struggling. It was adorable.

Read more here for additional info.

3. The bride and groom together in those first moments after the ceremony. As a photographer, you want to catch those special moments when the bride and groom are still adjusting to the fact that they are married. You want to get pictures of the couple when they are alone after the ceremony, and you want to pay special attention to their faces and the emotions that are showing there.

4. The arrival of the bride and groom at the reception – and the arrival of the guests, too. You want to get pictures of the joy and happiness that everyone is exuding as they arrive at the reception. When the guests are ready to celebrate, and the bride and groom are ready to join them, you want to capture those special first moments.

5. The random couples dancing throughout the evening. When the bride decides to dance with her aunt, you want to capture that fun moment. When the bride and groom get together with a group of children and dance the night away, you want to capture that time. You want to capture all of the fun, so that it can be remembered forever.

There is much that needs to be captured at a wedding, and there is much that is often overlooked.

As the one in charge of the wedding photography, you want to make sure that you get a shot of each of the special moments that takes place.

5 Tips for Photographing Children

Children grow up fast, and it is exciting to watch them do just that. As a photographer, you want to capture some of the moments in a growing child’s life. You want to be there to catch some of the child’s firsts – such as first birthday and first tooth – and you want to capture their everyday life.

Children are wonderful models for photography, but they can be a bit difficult to get settled down and ready for a photo session. If you are looking to photograph children, then you will find that these tips will help you do that in a fun and easy way.

5 Tips for Photographing Children:

1. Make sure that the children know ahead of time just what is going to be going on. Children will go along with your plans better when they are warned ahead of time as to just what you are hoping to do. Children deserve a little advance notice when they are going to be photographed.

2. Allow the children to be themselves. Children like to make silly faces and dance around. Your subjects don’t always have to be sitting perfectly still and smiling. Allow the children that you are photographing to enjoy the shoot, to be themselves and have fun. Capture the children running and playing, dancing and having fun.

3. Give the children a specific spot to sit. Children love to move around, but giving them a certain piece of furniture or a mark on the floor where they are to sit will help to keep them in one place. If you want to make things extra fun for the children, give the furniture a name, such as “Ethan’s Magic Chair”.

4. Give the children time. Don’t be too rushed with the photo shoot. Allow the children who you are photographing to have some time to play before you get started. Give the children frequent breaks so that they can play and have fun as you are working. Make sure that they children are relaxed and know that you care about them and their needs.

5. Know that every picture that you take is a memory that will be cherished. Even when pictures of children aren’t perfectly clear or beautiful, they can still be something of value. The images that you are capturing are images that will be saved for years. The children will grow up, but the pictures that you have captured will be saved forever.

When you are taking pictures of children, you are preserving a time in life that will not come around again. When you are looking to capture images of children, you need to be patient and happy.

Make sure that you are in a good mood, yourself, before you head out on the shoot, in order to ensure that the children who you are working with will receive the best version of you.

You want the photo shoot to be fun for everyone, and you can make it turn out that way. Taking pictures of children is fun and exciting, and it is most definitely doable.

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