Tag Archives: answer

Some Photography Q&A

I get a fair amount of questions on the post comments and direct contact. I should try to make a habit of highlighting some of those questions and responding to them because I’m sure others could benefit from that.

I dug back into the archives and pulled a few of the more general questions and answers. Hopefully these will help out some of you that may have the same questions. And if you have other questions, definitely ask in the post comments if it is specific to the article, or contact me directly if it’s something we haven’t covered yet. I’ll try to hang on to those from now on so I can share the answers with everybody.

So here we go, 10 Q&A bits from the archive.

Bill on “Quick Tip: Format Your Memory Card

I have a memory card that we have already used. Now the computer is asking us to format the card. Is there a way to format the card without losing the photos on the card?

No, formatting clears all the data from the card. Try downloading the photos from the camera to the computer with a usb cable (most cameras have this). If that doesn’t work, try a card reader (if you have access to one). You might even bring the card to a local computer or camera shop to see if they can access the images with a different card reader/computer.

Julia on “How To Create Photoshop Actions

I’ve done a couple actions, but how on earth do I share them with friends? Can’t find the files on my computer… Do I have to save in some special way?

You have to save them out — you should see an options for loading and saving selected actions in the pull-down menu of the actions panel. This will allow you to save out a .atn file. Just make sure you have the action or group of actions highlighted before you save.

Jim on “Flickr Etiquette Basic Guidelines

One thing I have noticed is that there seem to be many people who have no photos of their own, in fact they do not even have a buddy icon, and of course no real name given. These people tend to have amassed hundreds or thousands of favourites of women, some scantily dressed, some not. Many seem to be cross-dressers, perhaps looking for fashions to favourite. Most of these people never leave comments. Should I be concerned if photos of my wife are made favourites by these people? [...]

I know the type you speak of. I’ll usually block them just because they’re not trying to be part of the community and it’s really creepy when you look at their faves. Obviously, you can do whatever you wish with these followers, but I’m typically not a fan of the “super-creeper” gathering photos of my Wife.

Sangeeta Das on “13 Alternative Flower Photography Tips

[...] I want to know how is the dew drop trick done… is it just a macro shot or some post processing?

The only way I know to do those dew drops is to use a macro or super-macro setup (with reversal rings and whatnot). Otherwise, you just can’t get close enough to get high quality images. http://www.wonderfulphotos.com/articles/macro/dewdrops/

Jim on “7 Reasons To Love Prime Lenses

Are prime lenses really that much cheaper than zoom lenses? when I looked at canon 50mm f/1.8, which was probably the cheapest lens ever, it cost about $99. And the next one 50mm f/1.4 would cost as much as my Rebel XSi body. And neither one is the L series.

For the same quality, they are far cheaper. But they can be expensive too, especially when you want larger maximum apertures. With 50mm lenses, once you go larger than f/1.8, the price goes up exponentially. While the f/1.8 costs $99, the f/1.4 costs $400, and the f/1.2L costs $1600.

But now look at zooms in the 50mm range and you’ll see that you can’t get anything below f/2.8 or f/3.5. That’s a full 2 stops slower than what you can get with a prime, and the price is way higher than $99.

Adam on “60 Second Post-Processing Technique

[...] if this is the first round of processing, wouldn’t further detailed processing potentially be done in something like photoshop? [...]

Photoshop would be one option to finish it off. I typically go back into Adobe Camera Raw (or Lightroom) to finish images with additional tweaks and adjustments. I’ll go into Photoshop if I need to do something extreme, utilize the LAB color mode, clone something more difficult than dust spots, etc.

Jeff W on “Making Fine Art Prints: Signing

[...] If it’s “acceptable” to sign in ink or paint right on the image I would much rather do that in the future. I did try that with a white paint pen I got at Michael’s but even after drying overnight it smudged. Some of these just don’t adhere to photographic paper. Does anyone have a specific brand or type of pen they can recommend?

I’ve used two different pens, they both work great and dry fast.
http://www.sakuraofamerica.com/Marker-metallic-paint
http://www.marvy.com/product_details.aspx?ProductID=39

kevin on “7 Reasons To Love Prime Lenses

Nice article, but what is the focal length we usually need? And what do you suggest for canon when price is not a problem? Is 50mm f/1.8 sharp enough? Or we need 1.2?

The focal length you need will of course depend on what you plan to photograph. Landscape photographers may opt for wide angle, portrait photographers for mid-range, sports photographers for telephoto, etc. If you use a zoom, take a look at your photos and see what focal length you typically shoot at — this should give you a good starting point. I can’t really comment on what to buy for Canon if price is not a problem, but I think the “L Series” lenses are the top quality pieces. As for the 50mm, f/1.8 will be fine for most people, and plenty sharp if you stop down one or two stops (as is the case with most lenses). The f/1.2 will give you more light, but I can’t comment on the sharpness gains over a f/1.8 or f/1.4.

C B on “Cross Processing Tips and Suggestions

[...] I have some Ektachrome that I plan to cross process. I was wondering if shooting it through a red filter would make it so the green wasn’t so extreme? [...]

I’m not sure what would happen if you shot with a color filter… it might work, but it might also take some experimentation to get the filter strength and color correct.

C B on “Cross Processing Tips and Suggestions

[...] Will E-1 or E-2 film cross-process with C-41 chemistry? Or should I just sell it to someone who’s a collector and buy E-6? I don’t want to pay the big bucks to have it processed E-2.

I really don’t know about E-2 stuff. I did find a discussion about it at photo.net: http://photo.net/film-and-processing-forum/00DzKU

So next time you have a question on a given topic, feel free to ask in the comments. I usually try to answer right there within a day or two, but I might also bring it back up in another post like this in the future. And if anybody else out there has something to add to the questions above, chime in right here or on the original posts!

What’s Your Gender?

In a recent discussion between myself and the other photographers over at the Fine Art Photoblog, the topic of female artists came up. We’re talking about possibly holding another open call for portfolios and it was pointed out that the seven of us are male, as were most of the applicants in round one. It was then also pointed out that I’m male, as is Epic Edits — meaning the writing style, topics, and thus attracted audience.

So… now I’m curious about you, the community members and onlookers. I think it would be interesting to find out just how many guys and gals we have out there. As a writer, I’d like to know if my articles and posts are too male-oriented — who knows, I may be completely ignoring the ever growing group of female photographers!

{democracy:46}

And the poll (questionnaire) from last week is still running and taking suggestions for future topics here on the blog. Currently, most people don’t want to read about a photography topic — they want to know how I juggle my work, home, blog, and photography schedules! So, due to popular demand, you can expect to see a post on the topic within the next week or so… as soon as I find some time to write it.

Dreaming of Photography — Unleashed

Last week I asked the readers “What Would You Do… If You Could?” as part of our weekly poll. This one was an essay question though, and we had a lot of great answers come out of it. The question was based around the notion of having no worldly obligations and what you would do as a photographer.

18 photographers chimed in to share their dreams and aspirations with the camera. I love the diversity in the answers from each of the photographers, and it’s difficult to say that any of them sound more enticing than the others. But I did say I’d pick a few of the comments and feature them in an article. Here are five exceptionally inspiring responses — plus my own response to my question.

Niels Henriksen

If I had my way and obviously money was not an issue I would hire some of the great photographers and travel with them to understand how they see and their approach to capturing images. I would not limit it to one type of genre, but would take it all in. Can you just imagine the dialogue you could have with them. I would want to go with them on professional shoots or just to their favorite places. This would be my nirvana.

Chica

Wonderful question this week Brain. My answer is pretty simple. It stems from my background as a CNA. If I could get over my shyness (which would be huge) I would work with people who don’t have a voice. Not mutes, but people in a restricted situation. I would document people in prisons, senior homes, mental hospitals. So often they are thought of as there labels. You don’t get to know the person behind that label. I’ve seen a ton of the elderly in senior homes, with their only family being their caretakers. No family ever comes by to see them. Most often they can’t socialize, but with their eyes. With prisoners, it would be a whole different issue, I’m not sure that I would have the guts to do it, but I’d love to meet them, and document their stories, and try to understand the psychology behind why they committed their crimes. With Mental patients, it would be trying to understand the person behind the illness. They are their illness, but it’s out of their control. I believe there is someone under that illness, but they can’t communicate it. Breaks my heart to think of it. I’ve got a dad with a severe bipolar problem, and he went through many mental hospitals, saw all sorts of crazy things, and thankfully all these years later, he is stable, and living in a home alone, and now can function normally, with medication. I don’t want to photograph models, or people that are already in the public eye, I want to show who it is, that we aren’t looking at. Of course if I ever partake in all this, it will be in a few years if ever. It’s just a dream right now, and I’m comfortable with it.

Janne

Take any long, complex process and follow it from start to end. Planning, construction and deployment – or decommissioning and tear-down – of a ship, oil platform, sewer system, bridge, particle collider, industrial plant … Or start to finish of an industrial development process, from R&D to the marketing of the finished thingy. Follow something longitudinally. Then, since I’m an utter hack and the sky’s the limit here, I’d have some of my favourite photographers in a Rolodex (I’d have to actually _get_ a Rolodex first, of course) to call on for advice and impromptu ideas on how to approach any specific situation or phase of the project, as well as blunt advice on my own attempts.

Shawn

I would definitely do photojournalism. It has never been so easy for human beings to communicate and, yet, I think most of us (at least in the US) are more sheltered than ever. Sure, we have streaming video, podcasts, webcasts, but I still don’t think anything packs the same punch or tells the same story as the right photograph. Years from now, when we look at the conflicts and events that changed our lives and the world around us, we don’t remember videos. We remember single images… The young Vietnamese girl running from a napalm attack, the US flag being raised over Iwo Jima, the “Times Square Kiss” after World War II, a young Chinese student standing in front of a tank in Tiananmen Square. The list goes on… That being said, I’d travel abroad to conflict zones and poverty-stricken areas of the world and do my best to tell the story of the voiceless. I want to put images in front of people that make them finally say “it doesn’t have to be this way”… I want to be able to make people leap out of their comfortable chairs and coddled lives to do something, anything, to make their world a better place. _That_ would be true success.

Luis Cruz

If I could, I would take portraits of street kids, beggars, and basically the people who roam the streets. Taking that a step further (and if I dare), I would follow them around for a week or so and document their daily lives. We pass these people almost everyday – on the way to work, school, or wherever else we go – but we barely realize they’re there. Worse (and I’m guilty of this too), we deliberately ignore them (especially when they tap on our windows and beg for loose change or food). I’m not sure how common this sight is in your area, but beggars seem to live on every major intersection here in my city. If I didn’t care about making a living (and wasn’t so worried about my safety), I’d be out there doing this now.

Brian Auer

At the moment my passion is for street photography and photowalking (which go hand-in-hand nicely). There’s something magical about a well executed street photo, and I need lots of practice before I can consider myself to be a street photographer. Over the last year, photowalking with local photographers has been a highlight of my life — so much inspiration and creativity can be captured just from being around other photographers in a relaxed setting. In addition to these two things, I love to travel — I’ve been all across the U.S., parts of Mexico and Europe, and I’m heading to Japan this fall. I want more. In my ultimate situation, I’d travel the world to meet up with local photographers and explore the places that they call home. Travel… make friends… take photos… have fun.

Thanks again to everyone who answered the poll question. We’ll have to do another essay question sometime in the future — this worked out better than I figured it would.