Photography Tutorials

Second Picture is devoted to

  • Photography Tutorials
  • Photography Composition
  • Photoshop Tutorials
  • 3D Tutorials
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Here you find all my photography tutorials. Many of the articles are not exactly Photography tutorials but rather photography case studies. If you have any suggestions about my photography tutorials, please let me know.

Photography Tutorials

Tone Mapping in Photomatix

Tone Mapping in Photomatix Pro

17.02.2009 Category: Photography tutorials
In this HDR tutorial I concentrate in tone mapping in Photomatix. I show a real life example how to process an HDR image in Photomatix Pro.

Besides the tone mapping I do some preprocessing and postprocessing in Photoshop.

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HDR Photographing

HDR How to

14.02.2009 Category: Photography tutorials
In this HDR tutorial I discuss photographing for HDR images. Firstly I talk about suitable photography gear and then I discuss the actual photography process.

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HDR Photography & Processing Work Flow

HDR tutorial example photo (boat)

09.02.2009 Category: Photography tutorials
In this HDR photography tutorial I describe the HDR photography and processing work flow. The process starts from photography and ends with tone mapping. Additionally I talk about the downsides of HDR photography.

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The Meaning of HDR in Photography


31.01.2009 Category: Photography tutorials
In this HDR photography tutorial I answer the question: What are HDR photos? I clarify the term and describe the meaning of HDR in digital photography.

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Family Photos

Family photo

07.04.2008 Category: Photography tutorials
I was recently browsing through my collection of family photos. Unfortunately far too many of them exist only in a digital format on a DVD disc. I should definitely print more. Browsing through my family photos made me recall why I enjoy them so much and why some of them might appeal to other people as well.

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Bad Photos

Bad photo

12.01.2008 Category: Photography tutorials
Picture on the left was taken in Greece on the Island of Lesbos in the town of Molyvos. It was late and me and my wife were heading back to our hotel. It was very dark and the harbor was quiet. However, we noticed a lone fishing boat working on its last capture of the day. I thought it would make an interesting subject for a photograph. I saw a photogenic view and photographed it but unfortunately the result is not of high quality.

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High Speed Sync for Flash

Foreground subject illuminated with a fill flash

03.01.2008 Category: Photography tutorials
When I started using a digital entry level SLR camera I was shocked when my camera refused to use flash with higher shutter speeds than 1/200 sec. At first I thought there was something wrong with my camera. I went through the manual and online information and I found an answer that there is no high speed sync for flash in my camera (at least not with the built in flash). Previously I had been using Sony DSC-F828 bridge camera which could sync the flash with any shutter speed. I had taken the feature for granted. I had thought it was something found from every digital camera. I was accustomed to using flash as a fill light when photographing with high shutter speeds (1/500 – 1/2000 sec) in the hard sun light of the midday.

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SLR Camera or Bridge Camera?

Landscape photo taken with a digital SLR camera

18.12.2007 Category: Photography tutorials
About four years ago there was a debate in Digital Photography Review (among other places) about whether Canon EOS 300D is a better camera than Sony DSC-F828. The essential difference between these two digicams is that the former is a SLR camera and the latter is a bridge camera. Both cameras were announced at the same time in 2003.

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Raw Files in Photography

Raw photo of a moon

23.11.2007 Category: Photography tutorials
Digital SLR cameras and many bridge cameras can save photo as a raw file. Raw file is the unprocessed photo that the sensor of the camera captures. There are several image file formats that are used in digital cameras for saving photos. In this photography tutorial I'll compare raw format to JPEG format which is the most common file format for a photograph.

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Long Exposure Photos

long exposure photo

14.09.2007 Category: Photography tutorials
Exposure means the total amount of light that the sensor of a digital camera receives. Exposure can be controlled with sensitivity of the sensor (ISO), aperture of the lens (f-number) and the shutter speed. Here I discuss the use of slow shutter speed, or in other words the use of long exposure. Long exposure can be used to create very interesting photographs. Long exposure can be used for example to create a bright photo in low light conditions or to create motion blur to the moving elements of the photograph.

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Camera Raw Fill Light

Photography tutorial about Camera Raw Fill Light

28.08.2007 Category: Photography tutorials
Camera Raw is Adobe's Plug-In software for Photoshop which provides capability to open raw files. Raw image provides flexible processing possibilities due to its great color depth. In Camera Raw there is control named Fill Light which, like its name says, brings more brightness to the dark areas of the photograph. Camera Raw's Exposure and Fill Light controls together can even save a raw image which is partly over exposed and partly under exposed.

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Table Tripod

SLR camera with a table tripod

17.08.2007 Category: Photography tutorials
When I am on holiday I like to carry my camera everywhere but I don't always feel like carrying my tripod with me because of its weight and size. However, I still like to be prepared to photograph with slow shutter speeds if that special situation presents itself. My solution is to always carry a table top tripod in my camera bag. My experiences have shown it to be a very useful item for me. Sometimes it just saves the day. I have tried several table tripods and today I carry Manfrotto 709B Table Tripod.

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Silhouette Photography

Silhouette against sunset

10.08.2007 Category: Photography tutorials
Silhouette means a picture where only the outline of the subject is visible and the subject is of one color. Silhouette is usually made of two colors, the subject being black and the background being white. The most common subject for a silhouette is a side profile portrait of a human. Silhouettes can be made for example by drawing or by cutting paper but here I discuss the creation of a silhouette picture with a digital camera.

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Panorama Photography

Panorama photo of castle of Molyvos

03.08.2007 Category: Photography tutorials
By taking multiple photos and stitching them into one panorama photo one can create photos with an exceptionally high resolution and wide view. The high resolution makes it possible to create large high quality prints.

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Panorama of Castle of Molyvos

Panorama photo

29.07.2007 Category: Photography tutorials
While on a holiday in Greece I decided to try for the first time to create a panorama photo which consists of several photos. I had read about the subject so I knew the basic principles about photographing panoramas: 1) Settings of the camera the same in each photo. 2) In practice photographing of panoramas requires the use of a tripod 3) Adjacent photos must partly overlap with each other.

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Diffraction with Small Apertures

Landscape photo

19.07.2007 Category: Photography tutorials
Unprocessed photos taken with small apertures tend to sometimes look a little smooth compared to photos taken with larger apertures. The smoothness in photos taken with small apertures can be caused by diffraction. Diffraction means bending of wave as it passes an edge.

In this article I observe the effect of diffraction in digital photography. In digital photography diffraction happens when light waves go through the aperture of the camera. I won't go deeply into the physics of diffraction but I show some photographic tests and explain what the effect of diffraction means in practice.

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Lupinus polyphyllus

Lupinus polyphyllus

02.07.2007 Category: Photography tutorials
My intention was to photograph the summer nature, my mother's Norfolk terriers and test my new Canon EF-S 10-22mm f/3.5-4.5 USM wide angle lens. Despite my efforts I couldn't find opportunate situations to photograph. However, I had dragged photographic gear along so I wanted to photograph at least something. I noticed Lupines on the yard and ended up photographing them with Canon EF 70-200mm f/4L USM tele zoom. This lens captures very sharp photos with a pleasing Bokeh.

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Sunset in Phuket

Sunset it Phuket in Thailand

19.06.2007 Category: Photography tutorials
The sunset seemed promising and I stayed on the beach with my camera waiting for that most favorable moment. The sun was just setting into the horizon and it seemed that there was just the right amount of clouds in the sky. In my opinion clouds are maybe the most important element in a sunset. Without clouds the sky isn't really special when the sun sets.

Sunsets require long exposure times so I attached mini-tripod to my camera and placed it firmly on top of a beach chair.

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Technically Flawless Photo

Technically flawless photo

12.06.2007 Category: Photography tutorials
I think it is wise to first learn how to take technically flawless photo and only after that study image composition. A photo is technically successful when it is: Sharp, correctly exposed, correctly focused, and has suitable in depth of field. Of course in addition to these one could think about several other factors as well, but I think they are less important and fixable in post processing.

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How to Take a Good Photo?

Sharp photograph

12.06.2007 Category: Photography tutorials
When I started photography I often pondered one question: how to take a good photo? I researched the subject quite a bit and came to the following conclusion. I think that successful photographs usually have from two to four similar factors which are in order of importance: 1. Working composition 2. High technical quality 3. The right moment 4. An Interesting subject. I think that the first two factors are almost the requirements for a successful photo but factors three and four are necessarily not.

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Cathedral of Palma

Photo of Cathedral of Palma

12.06.2007 Category: Photography tutorials
The picture on the left is a photo of the cathedral of Palma in Majorca. The construction of the cathedral began already in 1230 and continued for hundreds of years. How should such a sight be photographed?

Sights are often photographed from far away, on eye level and so that they fit entirely inside the photo frame. Because of this many photos of the same sight tend to look pretty similar. It can get boring.

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