Your cameras LCD viewing screen is one of its most exciting features except that is when youre standing in bright

If you ask people what they like best about their digital camera, many will say it's the LCD viewing screen that provides instant gratification right after you take the shot. How could you not love it You can review the image, analyze its pros and cons, and then either keep it or try again instant gratification at its best. Too often, though, this love affair comes to a screeching halt when you're working in bright, direct sun. Your once color-rich LCD fades to a nearly indistinguishable shell...

What to Bring with

Your chances of getting a great shot improve greatly if you have the right equipment. First, you need a camera that allows you to control the shutter speeds and aperture. Technically, you could use a little auto-everything cheapie, but it is such a pain in the fuse that it's hardly worth it. If you don't have a camera with decent manual controls, you might want to make friends with someone who does. Next, you need to bring your tripod, a remote shutter release (if you have one), your red-bulb...

If your camera accepts an external flash you might think that will solve your problems with red eye Well almost

Many prosumer digital cameras provide a means for attaching an external flash. More often than not, the connection is provided by what is commonly called a hot shoe a postage-stamp-sized bracket on top of the camera into which you can slide an external flash. Photographers usually think that purchasing an optional flash unit and attaching it to the hot shoe will make their red-eye problems Hack 40 magically disappear. Indeed, an external flash does help reduce red eye. But sometimes merely...

The Clone Stamp in Photoshop Elements is a pretty good tool for removing unsightly wires from your scenes Photoshop 7

Most folks might not realize just how many wires are strung around the landscape. But if you have a photographer's eye and enjoy shooting landscapes, you understand what I'm talking about. It can be challenging to find an interesting roadside shot that doesn't involve wires. Have you ever found that nearly perfect shot nice landscape elements, beautiful colors, intense sky, and some magic light illuminating the entire scene You hit the brakes, grab the digicam,...

Why Digital Photography Hacks

The term hacking has a bad reputation. It is often referred to as the process for breaking into computers and turning them into weapons of discord. Among people who write code, though, the term hack refers to a quick-and-dirty solution to a problem, or a clever way to get something done. And the term hacker is taken as a compliment, referring to someone being creative and having the technical chops to get things done. The Hacks series is an attempt to reclaim the word, document the good ways...

Digital cameras have macro capability built right in But what if you want to get real close Heres how to get a bugseye

Since the early roots of photography, people have been fascinated with capturing the world up close. Super close. Bumps-on-a-frog close. Most digital cameras come with a Macro mode that allows you to get very close to your subject. Sometimes, this mode is simply called Close Up and is denoted by a flower icon on your camera. Depending on your camera, close can be defined as anything from 6 inches to 18 inches. But what if you want to see the very pores This hack will help you get started. There...

The camera doesnt always reproduce faithfully what the eye sees But Photoshop CS can help make your photos look like

Sometimes, I need to take two pictures to tell one story. This often happens when I'm trying to recreate something that my eyes can see easily, but that camera limitations prevent me from reproducing photographically. In part, this is because our eyes see the world differently than cameras do. We can see deep, detailed shadows and brilliant highlights at the same time Our cameras, on the other hand, make us choose between capturing one or the other, but not both. This is why many people become...

Combining the richness of color and the mood of BW photography you can create eyecatching artistic effects And with the

I always shoot my original images in color, even if the sole purpose of the assignment is to deliver B& W prints. Why Because when you shoot in high-resolution color, you have a full complement of options available later in Photoshop. For example, you can always convert a copy of the photo to B& W, keeping the color original intact. Or, as in this hack, you can mix the two formats. For this assignment, I want the image to have the artistic feel of B& W photography. I'm also interested...

Yes iPods make terrific digital music players Theyre also not so bad for storing movies and pictures from your digicam

When I hit the pavement for street shooting or the trail for an afternoon hike, I usually have my digital camera and iPod tucked away in my backpack. I bring the camera for obvious reasons, but recently, the iPod has become just as important. Yes, a little music is sometimes the perfect antidote to the relentless din of street noise, not to mention the fact that when I have my ear buds in place, fewer oddballs bother me. The iPod also stores all of my calendar information, in case I run into a...

How many times have you wished for an extra hand when youre shooting Heres one you can attach to your cameras hot shoe

When you're shooting without a tripod, it's best to have both hands on the camera to keep it steady and record sharp images. But sometimes you need to shade the lens from the sun or hold a small item while you photograph it. An extra hand would be invaluable at those times. The folks at GranView Camera have invented a unique accessory called the Flare Buster ( http www.multiclip.com) that might turn out to be one of the most versatile tools in your camera bag. This ingenious item is simply a...

Image resolution remains one of the great mysteries to hobbyist photographers theres one setting for computer viewing

I can't resist starting this chapter with an anecdote. Usually, I wouldn't, but I feel that this story sets the tone for the entire chapter. About a year ago, after teaching a two-hour digital photography seminar, I was fielding questions from attendees while packing up my equipment. One gentleman approached me and said, I have just one question for you. How do I change the resolution of my pictures without changing their dimensions I know there's one little thing I need to do, but for the life...

Digital Camera Attachments

Travel Tripod A Happy Compromise Hack 4. Convert Your Monopod into a Makeshift Tripod Hack 5. Steady Shots from the Comfort of Your Car Hack 6. Attach Your Camera to Bicycle Handlebars Hack 7. Flash Brackets for Pro Lighting Hack 8. A Flexible Arm to Hold Accessories Hack 9. Bubble Levels to Keep Things Straight Hack 10. Battle the Sun with an LCD Hood Hack 11. Convert Your Digicam to a Digital SLR Hack 12. T-Mounts and Other Threaded Tricks Hack 13. Double-Strapping on the Trail Hack...

Choosing a DSLR Camera

This next section of this hack provides ways to increase your odds of success with point and shoots. But first, if you want to cut right over to the fast lane, consider getting a digital SLR (DSLR), which has a much faster response time and performs better overall. DSLRs look and behave just like your favorite 35mm single lens reflex (SLR) cameras of years past, but they have a sophisticated image sensor instead of film. Not long ago, this wouldn't be practical advice for parents, because DSLRs...

You dont always need to have your finger on the shutter release to control your camera You might prefer to click the

One of the things people often overlook when comparing digital cameras is the software that comes bundled with them. Throughout this book, it's clear that I think Photoshop Elements or its big brother, Photoshop CS, is essential software for digital photographers. A bundled copy of Elements is certainly something to keep an eye peeled for when shopping for a camera. Beyond that, however, many manufacturers also include their own software to enhance the value of their product. This hack...

Photoshop CS includes a helpful Auto Color function The problem is that it needs to be calibrated Heres a calibration

Our everyday world is a mishmash of lighting. We read at home by tungsten lamp, ride to work under overcast skies, and toil at the office beneath fluorescent tubes. We normally don't think about all these different lighting situations, because our eyes and brain automatically correct what we see. Our environment, at least in terms of lighting, appears relatively consistent. This isn't the case for digital cameras. As wonderful as their little computer brains are, they're not as powerful as our...

It seems like everyone wants whiter teeth these days You might not have the time for peroxidebased solutions but theres

Most teeth, by design, have a slight yellow cast. Add coffee, wine, tobacco, and a host of staining foods, and the smile isn't quite as bright as it could be. In everyday life, this isn't a major issue. But for special portraits, a warm, inviting smile is important. This Photoshop hack is so easy, you'll wonder why you never figured it out before. As long as you show a little restraint with the technique, the results look quite natural. First, open your portrait in any version of Photoshop....

With an inexpensive swatch book of theater lighting gels some nightlight bulbs and a couple of LED flashlights you can

Yes, you can manipulate photos in just about every way imaginable in Photoshop. But what if you don't like Photoshop, don't feel that comfortable with your image-editing skills, or just want to try something new Alternatively, you can manipulate the picture as you actually capture it with the camera. Working with light painting and colored gels, such as the ones shown in Figure 3-10, is a great way to experiment with this type of creative shooting. Figure 3-10. Crystal with colored gel Figure...

The Achilles heel of digital cameras is that they need power lots of it But what do you do when youre in the middle of

I'm going to start out by saying that you should always have an extra battery on hand. Digital cameras are power-hungry beasts that behave only as long as you feed their insatiable appetite for electricity. Once the juice runs out, they're about as useful as the box they came in. When you're traveling, be sure to take your charger and extra battery with you. Each night, put the battery you've been using all day in the charger and put the spare in the camera. Then, when you take off the next...

Wrangling with LCD viewfinders sometimes leads to less than perfectly level horizon lines Thankfully a hidden tool in

I know that my digital camera's LCD monitor isn't the best tool for lining up straight images. But I like that little television screen for so many other things, such as gauging exposure in real time, that I use it anyway. There are days, however, when composing a picture in the LCD feels like backing up a trailer into the driveway. I turn the steering wheel one way, and the trailer goes the other. Even professional photographers using cameras mounted on tripods have problems composing scenes...

For a couple hundred bucks you can convert your Epson or Canon printer into a highend blackandwhite darkroom

Digital photography is based on a long history of techniques and tricks hammered out over a hundred years of film photography. The metaphors used by Photoshop are rooted in the lexicon of film photography. Filters, contrast, burning and dodging, color balance all these terms come directly from analog photography. This hack takes a sacred part of traditional photography, the silver halide print, and turns it on its head. How By using the traditions of offset printing, in which different shades...

Introduction

To really appreciate the power of your digital camera, you have to plug it into a computer. This is where you turn average photos into a great ones, create glorious prints that used to take days to return from the photo lab, make digital slideshows that rival professional presentations, paste together video snippets into short movies, and even add voice and music to your images. In this chapter, you will learn how to harness the creative power that flows from camera to computer via the USB...

Digital SLR users can connect their camera bodies to a variety of bargain optical attachments by using one of the most

The best camera for photographer-hackers is certainly the digital SLR (DSLR). From outward appearances, these cameras look just like the 35mm single lens reflex (SLR) models that photographers have been using for decades. SLRs are distinguished by the ability to remove the lens from the body and replace it with another type, which makes them extremely versatile. The other advantage is that you view the picture through the same lens you use to take the photo, so what you see is what you get....

The battle cry for his hack is go forth and calibrate Thats about the only way youre going to get consistently accurate

One of the promises of digital printing is that you can produce images in your own digital darkroom without the mess of mixing chemicals. However, while there is no water involved in digital printing, your prints might still get wet from the sweat of frustration. If you've ever tried to print color photos by just plugging your camera into the computer, opening your image, and printing, you know where this frustration comes from. Consistent color out of the box is almost impossible without a...

A trusty walking stick is helpful for fording streams and navigating slippery trails But why not use it to steady your

In the wide world of walking sticks, there are basically two types the ones you buy and the ones you make. Either version can become a steadying friend for your outdoor photography. A trip to the mountaineering store reveals that today's walking sticks or trekking poles as those in the know call them are lightweight, sturdy, and have comfortable grips. Most are constructed in collapsible sections, enabling the stick to fit nicely in a suitcase or be lashed onto the outside of your backpack....