Welcome

TO FOTOCHIMP SCHOOL OF PHOTOGRAPHY

This blog is geared towards complete beginners right through the scale to the more experienced photographer. I will upload new content hopefully on a weekly basis so remember folks to tune back in for some more TIPS, TUTORIALS & INSPIRATION…

In the image attached are some of the topics i cover plus many more ( scroll through links under ARCHIVE on the right for menu of content ) And feel free to contact me through Comments if you have any questions photography related and i will do my best to answer them a.s.a.p..  or email me at fotochimpix@gmail.com with photos you would like to submit into the READERS GALLERY..

HAPPY SNAPPING FOLKS…

 

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PANNING

PANNING

link ⇑

Hiya Folks.. Here’s a great wee video on PANNING photography. CLICK LINK ABOVE. 1st half of video is practical and 2nd half is abit of editing on Photoshop for those of you that like editing. Just a reminder in PANNING, use S or TV setting on your camera to slow your SHUTTERSPEED or go straight to MANUAL control and slow your SHUTTERSPEED to about 1/30 sec and then correct the exposure by going up to a ( Narrow Aperture ) larger number eg. F/11 upwards on your APERTURE (F-Stop) .. then aim at your subject eg (car or bike) as it approaches you and focus by half pressing your SHUTTER BUTTON on subject and follow it as it crosses directly in front of you then completely press the SHUTTER BUTTON to take the photo and keep following the subject until it passes. The video shows other details you may like to try aswell.. So give this ago folks and why not email me your best pics to fotochimpix@gmail.com and i will post them in the READERS GALLERY for you to revel & share the experience of making something magical happen in the digital world..

HAPPY SNAPPING FOLKS…

PREHEN BOATHOUSE CO.DERRY

PrehenBoathouseWalk

( Photos shot with phone )
From the comfort of your chair let me entice you to a road less traveled and lend you a taste of what lies beyond your front door.. As Danzae Pace once wrote.. I think the world boils down to two types of people. Those who see shapes in cloud formations and those who just see clouds!
Todays Ramble is based along Prehen BoatHouse River walk on the banks of the River Foyle Co. Derry Northern Ireland.
Marked for all skill levels and wheelchair accessible, this walk lasts around forty minutes in all and is located just a few minutes drive from Craigavon Bridge Derry London Derry.
As you walk along the wooded path, to one side you will be greeted with a guard of honor comprising of a vast variety of trees with their swooshing leaves whispering secrets to all who would listen and to the other side, a soft rippling crunching effect joins in on the chorus as the current crashes against the river’s edge. A twenty minute walk via this route transports you to a land of Elves and magic in peaceful co existence and leads you to a finale of a field of rabbits foraging away in a tranquil setting of a seldom used football pitch.
On the second route you walk towards the Craigavon Bridge passing lost pools of rain water brimming with life. The traffic nearby is reduced to a soft hum over rided by an array of bird song. Buttercups, Daisy’s, Ferns, Wild Raspberries and Ivy Bushes to name but a few, engulf you’re senses with their understated presence. A cool river breeze blow’s away the cobwebs and conducts an orchestra of creaking branches as you ramble at your own pace passing the occasional cycler, dog walker, skate boarder on one side to the thrill seeking water sport enthusiasts of wake boarders, canoeist and jet ski’s to your other side. All in all, a beautiful walk for all age groups on a limited time scale. So with that said, go and grab your camera, put on your walking boots and capture some wall hanging beauties..
HAPPY SNAPPING FOLKS…

EVENT PHOTOGRAPHY

EVENT PHOTOGRAPHY

A lot of people don’t like having their picture taken, especially at a business or fund raising function. They are deep in conversations, they are networking, and they don’t want to be disturbed. More than once I’ve gotten the evil glare from someone that meant, “Don’t even think about it!”

My best technique is to circulate through the party quickly and early

I chat people up, and tell them I won’t take much of their time if they just give me a quick pose and a smile. I tell them I’m giving them a chance to look their best. If they protest, I tell them I’ve been hired for the event and that the photos will be used for company purposes only. People may want to know who you are and who you represent, as there may be media photographers covering the same event as you. Approach people in a friendly and business-like way they usually can’t say no. Most people do not want to seem impolite. In the case of a family reunion or wedding, people are usually a little more willing to be photographed. You can have a bit more fun with the shy ones at a non-business event too.

Don’t be a voyeur

Engaging people as aforementioned above is better than just snatching photos with a long lens of people standing around talking. That’s what usually raises eyebrows and gets you stern looks. Act professionally, and you’ll get hired again.

Here are some more useful tips on shooting candids:

  1. Don’t take photos of people shoving food into their mouth or when their mouth is open. They will not be impressed.
  2.  Groups of 2 or 3 work best and make a nice horizontal.
  3.  If people are standing they look better than if they are sitting.
  4.  Step back a bit and use a longer focal length as opposed to being a foot away from     people and using a wide angle lens. Distortion is unkind to people’s faces.
  5.  Overall room shots are less successful so don’t bother, Unless your client is a party   planner and they want room shots.
  6.  Use the bounce flash card to negate red-eye. Bounced light is also less harsh than       direct flash.  If you don’t have a bounce card built into your flash, make one out of   white card or plastic and attach it to your flash with an elastic band.
  7.  High ISO is okay, but 400 ISO is usually the highest I need to use.
  8.  You’re capturing moments not fine artwork, and the chances of something being       enlarged past the size of a standard letter page is pretty rare.
  9.  Only show the best shots from the party to your client.
  10.  Delete the closed eyes shots and the shots that people don’t look their best.

Group shots

Sometimes you get asked to do large group shots at parties. Group shots are one of the hardest things to organize and shoot, especially indoors with limited lighting and when people are in party mode.

If possible, try to get your group outside and look for an area where you can get people on different levels as opposed to standing all in a row.

Use a small f-stop (larger number eg F-12, F-16 up) for your group, so you’ll get more people in focus.

Experiment by trying  flash outdoors to even-out the light and fill in the shadows.

Keep extra flash batteries and camera batteries on hand if it’s a big event.

 

Even introverts can be party photographers

Getting good event candids is fun and easy if done right, and you can make some good money at it too. I’m an introvert, so it took me a bit of practice to just go up and talk to people. But one thing I’ve learned, is that people usually like to talk about cameras and that’s something I can speak easily about.

The camera also acts like a crutch or a friend, and when there is nothing else to do you can always adjust the dials and make yourself look like you are doing something highly technical and important.

Practice at your next family event

Practice being aware of your surroundings. Check areas of the room for possible backdrops to portraits.

Beware of false light glare falling on main subject ( light from coloured bulbs can be very unflattering to guest photos ).

Don’t take photos where there is too much clutter in the background eg..pictures on walls, exit and toilet signs..

Check to see if there is an area of natural light coming in from a window and see if you can clear a space for taking pictures beside it.

Remember if you cannot move stuff out of your way to get your image eg, tables, stage, pillars..Move yourself to a different angel or try a soft aperture or use flash to blur and darken the background.

Most importantly,  ALLWAYS SMILE and be APPROACHABLE

There is nothing worse than a moody crabbit looking photographer!

So give this ago folks and remember, its probably digital cameras you are using so don’t be afraid to shoot loads of frames until you get the one you like..

HAPPY SNAPPING FOLKS

SMOKE PAINTING

Hot Chilli Setup (1)Smoking Hot Chilli

SMOKING HOT CHILLI

 

Have you ever wanted to take a photograph of magazine quality like a pro! Well, with this homemade mini studio setup, you most certainly can without all the hassle and expense of owning high spec photography gear and a computer whiz kids brain to navigate around photo editing software. Armed with your chosen camera. Whether it’s a COMPACT or SLR,  all you need is a bit of imagination, some ordinary everyday household objects and a lot of patience.

 

STEP ONE

As seen in top photo, all you need to achieve the end resulting photograph is to place a black background against a wall eg.. I used a black jumper draped over a large picture frame so it would lean against the wall for support. In front of this I placed a chilli on a thin wooden skewer and secured it with a large piece of blue tac inside a mug so that it would stand upright, to help you have absolutely no editing to do, you could paint or use a black marker to disguise the wooden skewer to make it practically disappear from your photograph. To create the smoke I placed an incense stick in another mug to one side so that when lite, the smoke would gently flow upwards around the chilli. And last but not least, for my light source I used a bedroom reading lamp to the other side pointing slightly on and behind the chilli so I could help make the smoke pop out in the photograph. HOT TIP for controlling the patterns your smoke will make is to make sure you are not near an open window or door that would create a draft and push your smoke every direction but where it’s intended.. Instead you can control the smoke with gently breathing on it or using another wooden skewer to wave through the smoke to create a pattern..

 

STEP TWO

  • If using a COMPACT camera, try disabling the flash or sellotape a bit of kitchen towel over it to diffuse the light and simply take the shot on auto. It might take you a few goes to achieve your desired effect but this is where a lot of patience comes in. Just remember, if you have not mastered how to crop then move yourself in closer as to eliminate all the props! All you want in the final photo frame is the Chilli and the smoke rising from it.
  • If using an SLR camera, try using your manual settings for example – Set your Shutter Speed to around 1/125 sec, adjust your aperture to about F/8 and keep your I.S.O low eg 100 to 200 to begin with.. If you are lucky enough to have a flash gun, turn it on and move its position to point up towards the ceiling. As all camera’s and lenses are different, these are just guidelines for you to use as a starting point. So give this ago folks and remember, its probably digital cameras you are using so don’t be afraid to shoot loads of frames until you get the one you like..

So give this ago folks and why not email me your best pics to fotochimpix@gmail.com and i will post them in the READERS GALLERY for you to revel & share the experience of making something magical happen in the digital world..

Tune in again for more simple photographic Tricks, Tips and Info..

HAPPY SNAPPING FOLKS…

 

LAZER LIGHT PAINTING

IMG_3166.jpgIMG_2976.jpg

LAZER LITE SHOES

Have you ever wondered how to achieve an amazing photo shot in the dark? Well, with a bit of LIGHT PAINTING you can! With this method you can change an ordinary photo into a magical event without the nusence of having to sit for hours editing on your computer. Armed with your chosen camera. Whether it’s a COMPACT or SLR,  all you need is a bit of imagination, some ordinary everyday household objects and a lot of patience.

STEP ONE

As seen in top photo. All the props you need to achieve the end resulting photograph is to place a red background on the floor eg.. I used a red jumper. You will need a pair of shoes, I used a pretty pair of decorative childs shoes. Then for you to find the shoes in the dark you will need a torch to help your aim and recompose your props midshoot if needed. And last and most important prop you will need is a lazer torch to create the light painting and bring the shoes alive in the darkness. You can pick up a keyring size lazer light torch in most local shops.

STEP TWO

  • If using a COMPACT camera, first thing to do is disable the flash.. Then by having a nosey through the built in settings, select one that will suit, for instance try using the fireworks mode, this mode is intended to be used at night as it automatically slows your shutterspeed down in camera. When you turn off the lights it is going to be difficult for the camera to focus on the shoes so this is where the large torch comes in to play. Shine the torch on the shoes ( or get a helper to do so ) Half press your shutter button to lock in focus on shoes, turn off the large torch and turn on your lazer light torch and swirl the light source in a rapid manner on and around the shoes in complete darkness until you complete your shot by gently fully pressing your shutter button. It will more than likely take a good few goes to get this process right but it will be worth it.. But remember, all cameras are different so be sure to try a few different modes until you find one that suits.
  • If using an SLR camera, switch into your manual settings and as a starting point to create light out of darkness you will need to set your shutter speed to around 30 secs, change your aperture to about F/22 and as a personal preference I always set the I.S.O last, try using a low I.S.O of 200 to begin with and most importantly for this shot, Turn Off The Flash! And as all camera’s and lenses are different, these are just guidelines for you to use as a starting point. Now the fun starts.. Find a room in your house that will be dark when the lights are switched off or do what I did and wait until night time to do this shoot. With the lights on, set up your props by placing the shoes on top of a red background on the floor. If you own a tripod, secure your camera to it and compose your shot by pointing down directly on to the shoes..If you have no tripod, try turning yourself in to a human tripod by leaning your body against something solid as eg.. a wall, this should be enough to steady any camera shake. And remember to only have in the frame what you want in it to save time by not having to crop afterwards. Heres the slightly awkward but not impossible part, If using an SLR camera with the lights on you should focus on the shoes and then turn the wee switch on your lens to manual to lock focus in place. Then turn off main lights to have the room in total darkness, turn on your lazer light torch and rapidly swirl it around the shoes while you press your shutter button to take the shot. So give this ago folks and remember, its probably digital cameras you are using so don’t be afraid to shoot loads of frames until you get the one you like..

So give this ago folks and why not email me your best pics to fotochimpix@gmail.com and i will post them in the READERS GALLERY for you to revel & share the experience of making something magical happen in the digital world..

Tune in soon for more simple photographic Tricks, Tips and Info..
HAPPY SNAPPING FOLKS