Photographers, camera enthusiasts and image specialists are creative by nature, always looking at the big picture. That’s why we’ve used this phrase in naming our blog—because we also see more when it comes to the world of photography. This monthly blog will share the latest on the products, techniques and opportunities that take your passion and your pictures to the next level. Thanks for joining us, and don’t forget to smile!
The holidays are fast approaching, and that means lots of chances for great photos—especially if you’re willing to put a new twist on your traditional picture-taking. The professional photographers at Art’s Cameras Plus suggest getting creative instead of playing it safe—because breaking a few rules can mean creating some truly unique images.
- Don’t Say Cheese—holidays are all about feelings, so focus on capturing a real moment in time rather than lining people up for the typical stiff and staged holiday photo. Use loose groupings and snap away as people interact. You’ll find the best photos often happen when all eyes are not on the camera and not all faces have the same forced smile. Go for the natural, intimate, and unpredictable sense of celebrating with families and friends.
- Don't Use a Flash Indoors—many people think that a flash is necessary for all indoor photography, but the light from flash units—especially from the tiny built-in ones found on most small cameras and phones—tends to produce harsh, cold and unflattering illumination. So turn off your flash indoors, whenever you can possibly get away with it.
Instead, position your subjects near natural light from a window during the day, then get between them and the light source—in other words, don't include the window in your frame, as this will throw off your exposure meter. At night, flood the room with indirect light from lamps and/or overhead lights. This will help reduce harsh, flashed-out subjects, as well as other problems like red-eye.
- Do Use a Flash Outdoors—surprisingly, a flash can be a big help when it comes to shooting outdoors during the day. Even in bright sunlight, forcing your flash to fire can often mean the difference between a so-so snapshot and an eye-catching image, as a day flash can help fill in shadows and even out harsh contrasts.
- Make the Subject Secondary—an easy way to add a special touch to holiday photos is to focus on reflections rather than the object itself. Look for images bouncing off shiny décor or interesting splashes of color reflected from Christmas lights and other decorations. Surfaces slick with ice or snow help create abstract images or use interesting shadows and other graphic elements to your advantage.
- Lose the Tripod—knowing that a tripod is a photographer’s most important accessory, it seems strange to abandon it for something as important as a holiday photo. But trust us, for some shots and with some practice, you can create wonderful effects by swirling and blurring colorful lights. Set your camera to a slower shutter speed—anywhere from a half second to two or four full seconds, then purposefully move the camera while taking the picture.
No Such Thing As “Too Many Pictures”
There is one rule that you still need to follow when photographing groups and families for the holidays—you absolutely must take a lot of photos. Memories are made in an instant—we know because we’ve been making memories last through photography for over 50 years. So be ready and never hesitate to jump into a group or get up close and personal. When you put yourself in the moment, you’re more likely to capture it forever.
When you buy a new digital SLR camera, you suddenly have a lot of options for taking better photos, but first you have to figure out the basics—like choosing whether to work with JPEG or RAW files. Better yet, start simply by decoding all those acronyms: SLR stands for single lens reflex; JPEG stands for [...]
Summer vacation season is just around the corner. Preserve your memories of special events, favorite destinations, and time with loved ones through exceptional outdoor photography. Here are five tips from the experts at Art’s Cameras Plus that can help you take better pictures: Go for the Gold—a common term in outdoor photography is shooting during the [...]
The technology in today’s cameras make the auto-flash feature pretty reliable—your equipment can quickly assess and adjust to lighting needs for better images. For really great images, however, you’ll need to understand and control lighting. When you do this, photography goes from ordinary to extraordinary. Here are five tips from the pros at Art’s Cameras [...]
As one of only a few camera stores in the entire Midwest to not only survive the online shopping revolution, but to continue to thrive, Art’s Cameras Plus is all about gratitude. We know how fortunate we are to have made the right changes at the right time, and are grateful to every customer whose [...]
Photography is popular for many reasons, with one of the most important being that anyone can capture a great image. Maybe you have all the right equipment, maybe you’ve positioned everyone and everything just right, or maybe you just have incredible luck or timing. At Art’s Cameras Plus, we love that photography is rewarding for [...]
You can learn almost anything online, but the difference is that little word: almost. When it comes to photography, there is no substitute, site, app, or video that can replace the hands-on experience of learning from an actual photographer who is passionate about what he or she does. That’s what you’ll find at Art’s Camera [...]
Photography is a growing interest—not only are more people discovering the art of taking pictures, but once they start, their enthusiasm tends to grow as well. And so does their personal inventory of equipment. Developing your skills with new cameras, lenses, and accessories is fun, but it can also become expensive. At Art’s Cameras Plus, [...]
While students of all ages are heading back to school, those students wanting to take better pictures are heading to Art’s Cameras Plus for some of the best photography classes in Milwaukee. Our education department, Art’s Photo Academy, offers more than 20 different classes each month to help people get familiar with the best equipment [...]