Archive | November 2011

Workshop – 9 Tips to shoot better images of Skateboarding & Bmx

The tips below will help you learn and understand what can create a professional looking photo.

These 9 helpful tips that I have gained through my years of experience shooting these sports should hopefully get you the images you want and help. Using these tips will help you create a strongly built image that will draw the attention of the viewer to the key areas that you choose.

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1 .Fast shutter Speed – Always make sure to shoot a fast shutter speed to capture the motion in still of what is going on in the image. This will make sure there is no blur around the subject as they will be doing fast motions which, with a slow shutter can ruin a good image.

2 . rule of thirds – The rule of thirds is a special technique used in photography which basically stops the subject from sitting in the centre of the shot creating a poor composition. Have the subject to one side of the image keeping the obstacle or part of the area in shot can emphasise how big the obstacle is for the viewer.

3. Timing – This will probably be one of the most difficult things to do without looking at other images. You will want to look in magazines and online of professional work to see when is the key moment to take an image. The best time to shoot an image is when they are at the peak of their trick or at the moment of capture as it shows off the skills height and trickery.

4. Distance – Far or near? – This can be down to the type of obstacle the subject is on, but also down to what the area is like and what you want out of the image. If you are at a skatepark it’s a little difficult getting up and close as there will be a lot of other people going around and you may get in the way of others which could cause problems. As well as this, if the obstacle is quite large, you’ll need to be further away to include the entirety of it.

5. Sequences – Using sequences can be a great way to capture a selection of tricks the character may do on one obstacle one after the other which you may not be able to get from one single frame. They are also particularly good for if they are doing a very quick trick which might  take more than one frame to see fully.

6. Use off camera flashes – If you are shooting in light that isn’t strong enough for you to use a fast shutter or the lighting is too dull make sure to use off camera flashes. Two are generally best to use as you then have a main and a secondary light as this will not only light up the subject but the area around them. Using off camera flash will also stop you from gaining strong casted shadows around the back of the subject too. You can also use flashes through the day if you want to make the subject stand out better as well as allowing you to use a faster shutter speed.

7. Lense Choice – As there are a vast amount of lenses that are useful for shooting these types of sport, it is important to use the correct one for the right environment. As fisheyes can widen the viewing area and elongate the surroundings they are great for low and up close shots, whereas if you want to be further away from the subject but want to keep them just in focus as a telephoto lense with a wide aperture setting. Using the correct lense can help you create a stronger image than you may have got with a different lense.

8. Creative angle – Don’t always feel you have to stick to the normal angles you may see in the magazines, try finding a place where you can compose your image to have a slightly filling foreground that can be put out of focus or maybe use an angle which can help you show what type of environment the image is being shot in to add a stronger effect to the shot. But try to make sure you don’t have too much filling the shot as this will distract the eye of the viewer and even make it look overfilled.

9. Experiment – Try your best to be as creative and as experimental with your shots. Look around at the environment around you and see if you can add anything to your shot, and don’t be afraid to ask the subjects opinion and what they think about your ideas.

I hope these tips will come to use and help you gain the images you’ve wanted!
And just remember to have fun!

Reflection – Shutter Speed

So during today’s seminar, we went through the use and techniques of shutter speed.
We firstly went through the measuring of shutter speed and what the fractions means and calculate to so we had a better understanding of what they meant before we began going through how it can manipulate an image.

So after this, went through the use of slow shutter speeds in an image. This is great for flowing objects such as streams or rivers, as well as cars on motorways as well.
These can then add a smooth flow to the shots and to also add a creative look to the image.
Using a slow shutter speed increases the movement in an image so this means that a tripod should generally be used to keep it into position. As well as this, the use of a longer shutter speed means that there is a chance of over exposing the image so to get around this you can rather use a smaller aperture or a N.D filter.

We then shortly went through the use of fast shutter speed an how it can capture action in a shot and how it can work well in things like sporting events so it keeps the subject sharp and in focus.
After doing this we went through the use of panning and zooming and how this can add a artistic effect to the shots and also emphasise the moment or action in the shot.

Finally, after going through all the different uses and techniques we then went around the campus to practise these new techniques we had being taught about. We were asked to try use the panning and zooming techniques more as they are more difficult to get used to so it would help us gain some experience on how to use it properly.
As I already knew how to use these techniques I tried to help my friends work on theirs more than do it myself but I think I did help them out how to use it creatively and they ended up coming out with some nice pictures.

Halloween Photoshoot plans

So with this photoshoot I think it’s important to emphasise not only the fun of the day, with the use of dress-up and the trick-or-treating. But I also want to include the fact that this day is a celebration of the beginning of winter.

The equipment that I will need is:
– Camera
– Portrait Lense (50mm)
– Standard kit Lense
– Telephoto Lense
– Flash Gun
– Reflector/diffuser
– Tripod

To do this I will have to organise a few models to dress up in costumes and to try make them look nice, this will let me work on my portrait techniques with not only singular models but group shots with using a flash gun and the lighting provided.
As well as this I will also use a tripod to take long exposed shots to use the natural lighting and to also add movement in my images and an eerie feel in my shots.

I think the most important thing I will need to do in this photoshoot is to use a variation of techniques to add special effects to the lighting I use so that my images will all be very creative and interesting.

I am looking forward to experimenting with what I can do with my lighting techniques and hopefully I will get some good pictures out of it.

Intro to exposure

So for this lecture we were going through the explanation of exposure.
This included the three major factors which are:
– Shutter Speed
– Aperture
We then went through these in slight description to understand how they work and how they can affect their image in their separate ways.
As ISO is the sensitivity of the film/sensor in the camera, this means that when you use a higher ISO it will be much more sensitive meaning that it is easier to shoot in darker lighting.
The shutter speed decides how long the shutter stays open, which means that depending if it’s bright the photographer can use a fast shutter speed to gain the correct exposure, or they can use a longer exposure if it’s dark so that it’s not too under exposed.
The aperture then controls the size of diaphragm which controls the amount of light which falls onto the shutter. So the wider the aperture the faster the image is going to be exposed. But then the wider the aperture is the lower the depth of field will be in the image.

Reflection – Aperture

So during our photography seminar today we spoke about the effects on an image that aperture can produce.
As aperture is the key to the depth of field in a photograph, it can be creatively used in several ways in a shot, so it is very important to understand it properly.
Depth of field is the distance in front and around the point of focus which is kept sharp and depending on the theme of the image can be very key in building a strong photo.
With learning that a wide aperture produces a larger depth of field in the image, this is mainly used for if you want to keep one major part of shot in focus as to draw the attention of the viewer.
This is the opposite to a narrow aperture, as this gives less depth of field, but in return keeps a higher amount of the image in sharp focus so you can then see the surroundings of the image which then tells more of a story in the image.
After then going through the f.stops on the camera controls we were then set the task to go out and practise the use of aperture on the campus and use the subject of “Signs” to shoot.
This was a good test as we had to look around the campus for things that could work well in giving us a nice composition and empasise either the shallow or long depth of field in our photos.
I think that I personally did quite well as I tried to work on  my composition at the same time to make sure I didn’t throw the subject straight into the centre of the shot. And as well as this, I also tried to include an interesting background for the images in which I used a longer f.stop.

Reflection – Writing for the Web

With this seminar, we have being going through the different ways in which articles should be structured depending on whether they are online or in a newspaper/magazine.
It was interesting to see how the same story can be edited to fit it’s surroundings and for the viewers.

Karl showed us the two separate structures, showing us their slight differences and how important it is to get these right for when you are writing for the web.
He gave us a lot of key facts to keep in mind on how we should keep our writing short but informative.

He then went through the use of the “Inverted Triangle” which is the key basis to work on when publishing any worthy article on the web.

There are three parts to the inverted triangle and working from top to bottom these are:
1. Most Newsworthy Info.
For this section the writer should go through the general happenings in the story so that the reader knows and understands what the article is about.
2. Important Details.
As you have caught the readers eye in the first part, you then talk about the more longer and important facts/details of the story.
3. Other general/background info.
Finally, the writer usually finished with some side information of the story which may not fully be key to the story, but it might be a good piece of information for the readers to know about.

All these then build up a strong article for any story that can be posted onto the web.
I thought this was very useful to learn today as it is just before we have to produce our own online article for the course, so this has really helped me understand what is key for a strong article.
And with this information, it means I have a starting block to work on with any other pieces of work I may need to publish online.

Jimmy Savile Memorial plans

The legend may be making one last final mark on his hometown by the possibility of a permanent memorial for the man himself.
The council leaders are asking for the opinions of the people of Leeds on rather naming the new upcoming stadium or a statue in the name of the man himself.

The legendary showbiz man has been well known for not only his television and Dj work, but his vast amount of charity work throughout his years. And this is why the Labour deputy leader Judith Blake has said that and future memorial of Sir Jimmy’s should mark his “enormous contribution” to the city.

As well as the talks of a memorial, there are also the plans of him being buried in a golden casket which will be on show in the Queens hotel in Leeds on the 8th of November from 9am-4:30pm.

This will then lead onto his funeral the day after, in St. Anne’s Cathedral at 2pm, which is also open to  the public as well as family.
It is said that one of his final wishes before his passing away was to be buried in the city of Scarborough, overlooking the sea.

It is said that the family of the Leeds Legend have said they would like the public to come along to both the mass and the burial as it is what he would of wanted.