How your composition can trick your light meter

This week I’ll show you how your composition can trick your light meter The light meter in your camera is a sophisticated bit of kit. It has a few different settings and each one has it’s own uses but most people will keep it in the multi meter mode. In this setting, sometimes your composition can trick this into producing a bad image. Basically, the light meter will look at the whole image and try to give you a good exposure. When there is a lot of dark parts in the image, the light meter will brighten it up and when there is a lot of bright areas in the image, the light meter will drop the exposure down. This is all well and good, but when the subject is darker than the surrounding parts of the image, it will tend to be under exposed. On the other hand, if the subject is surrounded by a lot of dark parts, it will tend to be over exposed. There are a few ways to counteract this, depending on what setting you are in. Generally, if you are shooting in Auto mode, everything is automatic, so you won’t be able to compensate […]

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An introduction to long exposure photos (without an ND)
January 3, 2018 by Mike in Hints and tips, How to, tutorial 0 Comments

Today I am going to show you an easy way to get into long exposure photography without an ND filter. Now this won’t get you those classic daytime long exposure shots but it will teach you all about long exposure photography and how the settings change as the amount of light drops going into the camera. Long exposure photography is similar to night time and astrophotography, so hopefully you’ll get lots of value from this lesson. All you need is a camera and a tripod, a few hours before and after sunset in a safe place and a bit of knowledge behind your menus in your camera. Also First of all, you need to set up the camera properly. This is more of a learning exercise than a photo capturing session but if you go somewhere interesting, you could easily get a great image. It will also show you how the light changes from day to night. With long exposure, the clue is in the name. It’s all about shutter speed and how long it is open, the longer the shutter is open for, the longer the light streaks are and the more smooth and dreamy water and moving clouds become. So […]

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Shooting the stars
November 27, 2017 by Mike in Uncategorized 0 Comments

Shooting the stars, or astrophotography, is one of those specialist sides to photography. You don’t need to have fancy kit, but it does help. As there is very little light about, the camera needs to be good at low light capture and your lens needs to be as fast as possible….and if you’re photographing the milky way, or trying to capture shooting stars, you’ll need as wide a lens as possible. I shot my first astro shots with the canon 350d and the 10-20mm sigma, they didn’t come out that well, but I was hooked and wanted to get my image quality better and wanted to get some milky way shots. Now I shoot with the A7rii (I haven’t upgraded the firmware and I am not going to as apparently the update automatically reduces what it thinks is noise…..and it seems to think stars are noise….) This is know as the “star eater” upgrade…..The A7rii is great in low light and gets great shots of the stars. Lenses I use two different lenses, the samyang 14mm f2.8 and the Zeiss Batis 25mm f2. So With the samyang,it is a really wide lens, and surprisingly sharp for the price I paid […]

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Scouting a Photography location
November 3, 2017 by Mike in Hints and tips, How to 0 Comments

Scouting a location When I’m shooting in a new location, or I want to find new places to photograph near home, there’s nothing better than getting out and about. I search on google maps for things that stand out, I look to see what other photographers have captured in the area to get inspiration and then we go out hiking, up in the mountains, along beaches, etc, and find the things we’ve seen on line. Step 1 When searching on google, look for things you might find interesting….you have to use your imagination a little here, but any big standout features can work. Step 2 Find out what other photographers have captured in the area. This might seem like you’re copying others, but you need to learn your craft, and what better way than to learn off others. When you learn to play an instrument, you pick your best songs, find a “how to play” video on YouTube and then learn to play it. Once you get good enough and know the principles…..and want to take it to another level….you start to write your one songs. Photography is the same, learn from the best, and then make it your own! […]

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Customising Your Sony Camera
November 2, 2017 by Mike in Camera setup, How to 0 Comments

Customising Your Sony Camera (A7 and RX10) This is aplicable to the sony a7ii, a7sii, a7rii and the rx10iii. (for the RX10iii scroll down past the A7 settings to the RX10iii section) I’m I suppose what you’d call a hybrid shooter. I shoot both video and photographs, so I’ve come up with the following setup for my camera to make it as easy as possible. The Sony menu system is one of those anomalies in the world where common sense seems to have been thrown out the window, however, it doesn’t have to be all that bad. Now this isn’t an in-depth guide on the menus, there are tonnes of those of youtube. This is just a quick setup of the essentials to get the things I use in a place where I can access them quickly and efficiently. There are basically three different customisable areas:   A7Sii Dials So the main settings you want access to are ISO, aperture and shutter speed. On the A7 cameras you have three dials, so it make sense to put these three settings on these dials. ISO on back dial, Shutter on back top dial and aperture on front finger dial.   On […]

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