Digital Photography Technique:
Quick & Helpful Video Tips

Welcome to the home of the Two Minute Photo Tips video series! This is a brand new feature on Ultimate Photo Tips where I'll be sharing some great digital photography technique via a series of short videos. I hope you enjoy them! So that you can see what's planned for the future, I've listed all the anticipated categories and topics below. Come back and visit often, as I'll be adding a new video each week. Enjoy!

Two Minute Photo Tips: Photography Video Tutorials


Contents:

Camera Settings

Exposure

Composition

Technique

Story-Telling

Creativity

Gear

Photoshop

New video!

 

Camera Settings

Before you can practice your digital photography technique, you need to get a grasp on the basic camera settings. Here are a few videos to help.

Camera Metering Modes

camera metering modes

Are you guilty of ignoring which camera metering mode you have selected? Learn about the different modes and their impact on your final image.

Watch the video on the camera metering.

Aperture Priority

Julie talks about aperture priority

What is aperture priority? In this video, Julie explains how you use it, how it works, and why you would choose this camera mode.

Watch the video on aperture priority

Bulb Mode

Julie talks about bulb mode

What is bulb mode? In this video, Julie explains how you use it, how it works, and why you would choose this camera mode.

Watch the video on bulb mode.

RAW vs JPEG

Julie compares Raw versus JPEG formats

Are you wondering whether to shoot in RAW or JPEG? Not sure exactly what the difference is? Julie compares these two file formats in a short video, and recommends which you should be using.

Watch the video on RAW versus JPEG.

 

Future Topics:

  1. shutter priority
  2. exposure compensation
  3. what ISO to choose
  4. white balance


Exposure

Exposure and composition are the nuts and bolts of digital photography technique. I'll start with a few videos to help you get a handle on exposure.

Camera Metering Modes

camera metering modes

Are you guilty of ignoring which camera metering mode you have selected? Learn about the different modes and their impact on your final image.

Watch the video on the camera metering.

Histograms Part 1

photo histogram explained

In the first video of this three part series, I explain how to understand and interpret the data in your camera's histogram display.

Watch the video on the photo histogram.

 

Histograms Part 2

photo histogram explained

In the second video of this three part series, I explain how to use the data in your camera's histogram display to correct your exposure.

Watch the video on the photo histogram.

Histograms Part 3

photo histogram explained

In the third and final video of this three part series, I explain the technique of "exposing to the right," which should be used if you are shooting in RAW.

Watch the video on the photo histogram.

 

 

Future Topics:

  1. exposure = aperture + shutter speed + ISO (+ light!)
  2. shutter priority
  3. exposure compensation
  4. what ISO to choose

 

Composition

Digital photography technique doesn't stop at exposure. Composition is key to a great photograph. Here, I share a few thoughts on some of the dos and don'ts to help you tell the story you want.

Subject Placement

Julie talks about subject placement

Are you ready to go beyond the rule of thirds with your subject placement? Learn how the position of your subject relative to the frame relates to the story you want to tell with your photograph.

Watch the video on subject placement.

 

Leading Lines

Julie talks about leading lines

Direct your viewer to your subject; use lines in your photographs to lead your viewer's eye exactly where you want it to go.

Watch the video on leading lines.

Bright Spots

Julie talks about brght spots in photos

Used deliberately, bright spots in photos can draw your viewer's attention to your subject. Included accidentally, bright spots can be distracting. Make sure you get it right!

Watch the video on bright spots in photos.

Background is an Integral Part of the Image

Julie talks about background in photography

Never under-estimate the importance of the background in your photograph. It can make or break your image. All too often, we pay too much attention to our subject, and not what surrounds it.

Watch the video on background in photography.

Rule of Thirds

rule of thirds

The rule of thirds is one of the most touted rules in photography, so is it ever okay to break it? Find out my thoughts, and see some examples.

Watch the video on the rule of thirds.

 

Future Topics:

  1. the KISS Principle
  2. diptychs and triptychs


Technique

This section holds a collection of videos on all kinds of digital photography techniques, from how to hold your camera, to photographing holiday lights, to capturing star points.

Winter Photography

Winter Photography

Are you planning to do any winter photography in cold weather? If so, I have 4 must-know tips before you subject your equipment (and yourself!) to the cold.

Watch the video on winter photography.

Snow Photography

Snow Photography

Is it snow season where you live? If so, get outside and enjoy it with your camera!In this week's video I bring you eight hot tips for some cool snow photography.

Watch the video on snow photography.

Photographing Christmas Lights

Photographing Christmas Lights

Looking for something fun to do with your camera this holiday season? Here are some tips and techniques for creating both realistic, as well as abstract photos of the holiday lights in your neighborhood.

Watch the video on photographing Christmas lights.

Live View for Focusing

Live View for focusing

Do you ever struggle to get accurate focus? Whether you have trouble trying to focus close up, or in low light, or just because of poor vision, this technique with live view can improve your focusing.

 


How to Hold Your Camera

Julie talks about how to hold a camera

Are you making this common mistake when you hold your camera. It could cause blur in your photos! Find out how to hold your camera correctly.

Watch the video on how to hold a camera.

 

 

Digital Night Photography

Photographing star points

Have you ever wondered what shutter speed to use to capture star points, and not star trails? In this short video on digital night photography, Julie reveals the formula to use to calculate the maximum shutter speed you can use to keep those stars looking like points.

 

Future Topics:

  1. backlight
  2. grey cards
  3. star trails: how to get lines vs. curves, vs. circles
  4. bracketing
  5. tip to catch out of focus foreground material
  6. shooting in cold weather
  7. get it right in camera
  8. photograph children/pets from their eye level
  9. photograph people from slightly above (no nostrils!)
  10. find your light first, then the right subject
  11. look behind you!

 

Story-Telling

I believe that photography is all about story-telling. In these videos, I share some tips so that you can better translate the vision in your head into a final image for your viewers.

Photo Composition: Simplify for Higher Impact

Julie talks about photo composition

Do you want to take your photos to the next level? You need to simplify to eliminate all elements that don't contribute to your story.

Watch the video on photo composition

Convey Emotion and Mood Using Color

Julie talks about color in photography

Color in photography can be used to convey emotion and mood. Choose colors that are consistent with your message to tell a strong story.

Watch the video on color in photography

Include People in Your Nature & Landscape Shots

Julie talks about including people in nature photography

Do you always avoid including people in your nature and landscape photos? Find out two good reasons to include people in your shots.

Watch the video on people in nature photography

Light and Dark Tones in Photography

Julie talks about using light and dark tones in photography

Light and dark tones can convey emotion in your photographs. Make sure you understand how to use high or low key exposures to reinforce the story you want to tell.

Watch the video on tones in photography

 

Future Topics:

  1. less is more!

 

Creativity

Creativity is the secret sauce that makes your image stand out from the crowd. Here are a few videos with digital photography technique to get you thinking outside the box.

Sunset Photography

sunset photography

Who doesn't love taking photos at sunset? Here are ten tips to help you improve your sunset photography.

Watch the video on sunset photography.

Subject First or Light First?

Julie talks about finding photography subjects

Which should come first? Your subject or the light? Turn your thinking on its head, and find the light before the subject.

Watch the video on photography subjects.

 

Restrictions Breed Creativity

Julie talks about how restrictions breed creativity

If you think that creative photos are all about having complete freedom, think again! I think it's actually about imposing restrictions. See if you agree.

Watch the video on creative photos.

Creative Use of Shutter Speed

Julie talks about creative use of shutter speeds

Are you confused by what shutter speed you should be using? Are you avoiding the issue by avoiding manual mode altogether? Learn to choose a shutter speed that tells your story.

Watch the video on the creative use of shutter speeds.

Future Topics:

  1. creative use of aperture
  2. it's all about attitude!
  3. communicating how you feel

 

Gear

We photographers do love our gear! Here are a handful of videos that talk about the toys.

Photography Diffuser

Julie helps with understanding a photography diffuser.

Having trouble photorgaphing in the bright sunlight? Let me show you how a photography diffuser can help you reduce contrast when the light is very bright.

Watch the video on the photography diffuser.

Understanding Camera Lenses (Part 1)

Julie helps with understanding camera lenses.

Having trouble understanding camera lenses? Let me help you sort out the relationship between focal length, field of view and perspective.

Watch the video on understanding camera lenses.

Understanding Camera Lenses (Part 2)

Julie helps with understanding camera lenses.

Are you ready to learn more about what differentiates one camera lens from another? Let me help you understand glass quality, and the significance of a lens' maximum aperture.

Watch the video on understanding camera lenses.

 

Variable Neutral Density Filter (Part 1)

Julie explains the variable neutral density filter

It's bright outside, but you want to use a long shutter speed or a wide aperture. What can you do?

Watch the video on the variable neutral density filter.

Variable Neutral Density Filters (Part 2)

Julie explains variable neutral density filters for postrait photography

Variable neutral density filters aren't just for long exposures and selective focus in bright light. They can also help with your portrait photography.

Watch the video on variable neutral density filters.

 

Graduated Neutral Density Filter

Julie explains the graduated neutral density filter

Do you sometimes struggle with landscape photography because the sky is so much brighter than the foreground? Try this filter as a solution!

Watch the video on the graduated neutral density filter.

 

The Virtues of a Camera Tripod

Julie gives you 2 good reasons for using your camera tripod

Is your tripod feeling lonely and neglected? It's time to take it out with you again! Find out two good reasons why.

Watch the video on using a camera tripod.

Using Your Wide Angle Lens

Julie gives you 7 tips for using your wide angle lens

Do you want to draw your viewer into the image? Here are 7 hot tips for using your wide angle lens effectively.

Watch the video on the wide angle lens.

 

Camera Protection

Julie gives you 2 ways to use a shower cap for camera protection

A shower cap? Really?

Check out this video for two ways that you can use a shower cap as camera protection from the dust and rain.

 

 

Photoshop

We can't talk about digital photoghraphy technique without talking about the software. Here are a few Adobe Photoshop tutorials to inspire you.

Orton Effect

an Orton effect created in Adobe Photoshop.

New video!

Looking for an easy way to give your photos a soft glow? Try creating a digital orton.

Watch the video on the orton effect.

 

Next, you may want to watch a video on using aperture priority mode on your camera.

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