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Black & White Photography

The Timeless Art of Monochrome


Black & White Photography
The Timeless Art of Monochrome
by Michael Freeman

I review a lot of photography books and more often than not I don't find a lot of difference between them. It is sort of like dozens of copies of the same old thing. Then that special one arrives at my door and I know I have another real keeper for my library. Black & White Photography by Michael Freeman is not going to be just another library book here because it is going to spend most of the time right near where I can get to it.

Black & White Photography – The Timeless Art of Monochrome
Black & White Photography – The Timeless Art of Monochrome

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Digital Sensor Cleaning Tips


PhotoSol Sensor Swabs
PhotoSol Sensor Swabs
Many benefits come with shooting with a digital camera - and there are also the down-sides to it. Cleaning a digital sensor probably being the #1 nightmare for most, especially if you don't really know what you are supposed to do, and how to do it correctly. It did not take long for me to find spots on my images taken with my first digital camera and retouching them all out became an ongoing nightmare. I quickly found out that I had two choices: either retouch every image or find out how to clean the sensor myself. And since I had heard that digital sensors are as sensitive as working with nitroglycerin, I was not in any hurry to be doing that. (I know how explosives work)

My first research into cleaning digital sensors only got me the basics of how it is done, and not how best to do it. To begin with no one told me that there are different size swabs for different size sensors, so I started out using swabs too small and had to make several passes across the surface. A no-no for several reasons. First, you do not want to use a swab more than once. Second, you do not want to make half passes across a sensor because it leaves streaks where they overlap. Third, more than one pass can pick up dirt on the first pass and then deposit it on the second pass, or even take that dirt and scratch the sensor on the second pass. Replacements are EXPENSIVE!

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Shooting Dramatic Fireworks


(click image) © Paul W. Faust
(click image) © Paul W. Faust
One of the many things we all go to see during our national holidays, as well as at many other special events, are the big fireworks displays. Even though it may be pitch black out, there is no real need for special equipment to shoot fireworks. All you need is a good zoom lens in the 35-120mm range, depending on how far away you are from where they will be exploding , all that is needed is a good sturdy tripod, a cable release, a small 4x5 inch piece of dark matt board, and a slow ISO setting of 64 or less will get you lots of great shots. There is no need to use special filters or any other piece of custom photo equipment. In fact everything you will need you should already have.

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Give It Back


© Paul W. Faust
© Paul W. Faust
Most of the time when you hear talk about photography you hear it called an art, or a craft, but I wonder why so few people ever see it for what it really is, “a gift.” The gift of a talent to see, and then to be able to capture that vision with a camera. There are those who use their gifts to give back something whenever and wherever they can, and there are those who just take what they are given as if it were owed to them.

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Photo Storage Management


Photo storage management is a topic that comes up often. I have participated in numerous discussions on this topic on many photographer community sites. Regardless of what photo management software you use to edit, catalog and manage your photographs and videos, you need a good strategy for physically storing and preserving these valuable digital assets. I am a OS X and Apple Aperture user so you will see references to Aperture Libraries. This process works exactly the same for Lightroom Catalogs so Lightroom users on OS X should feel equally comfortable with this solution. Windows users too should have no problem finding tools for disk drive synchronization so this solution should apply equally to Windows as well as OS X users. While photo storage management is only a part of the larger subject of Digital Asset Management, it is of such importance that it deserves dedicated attention. In this article I share my method for photo storage management.

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Preparing an Online Portfolio


I use multiple online portfolio sites to market and license my photographs: Photo Shelter, 500px.com, and TravelPhotographers.net to name a few. Apple Aperture's organizational tools and custom metadata fields make it easy to select and organize an online portfolio, and to track which online sites are marketing which images, all within Aperture. The benefits are that I make my selections and organize my images only once, inside Aperture, that I have consistent organization between my online portfolios, and that I can quickly find which images are being marketed where. Once I make my selections and organize my images inside Aperture, I replicate that structure on my online portfolio sites and populate them with my selected images.

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How To Get Intriguing And Delectable Travel Portraits


For most of the people, visiting somewhere else will feel like just that, a place that is not your home. Sometimes people have so much to do, so much to engage with and so much to take that they often forget that they are in someone else’s home. Therefore, travel photography allows you to engage with people who call that place their home, get understanding of the country and establish connections with people who you would have never had the pleasure of meeting.

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The Making of a National Geographic Photo Contest Winner, and Loser


Harry Fisch's photograph Preparing the Prayers at the Ganges was chosen as the winner of the Places category for the 2012 National Geographic Photo Contest.

The picture was later disqualified as the organisation considered that the digital removal of a bag on the right side of the frame was in direct violation of the contest rules. In the words of the National Geographic Senior Photo Editor, Monica C. Corocoran: "..it is unfortunate you did not crop the bag out or just leave it in, as it really had no impact either way. But digitally removing anything from a photo is in direct violation of the contest and we must follow our own rules... "

Harry Fisch designs and leads Photographic Expeditions to different countries in Asia, Africa,South America with his firm Nomad Photo Xpedition.

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