The Photographer's Notebook





3 Tips That Will Help You Capture Better Images

Many of you already know that I've had a camera in my hand since I was a little girl, but it wasn't until I became a mother that my enjoyment for photography became an unquenchable passion. Shortly after I became a mother, I quickly realized the incredible speed at which my precious baby was growing and changing. I wanted desperately to capture the beautiful fleeting moments in my everyday life. So when I got my hands on my brand new DSLR camera, I was really excited because I thought I would suddenly be able to capture fantastic images of my dear little daughter. However, I was quickly disappointed. Those heart-tugging moments I longed to capture beautifully were not better with my new fancy camera compared to the images I had been taking with my point and shoot. 

Fast forward to today, and after almost fifteen years of learning and years of teaching other women photographers, I've learned a few lessons about how you can capture better images. Here are a few tips: 


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Staying Inspired During Dark Winter Months

Winter can be uninspiring, especially this year, when many of us are under health protocols that keep us from gathering and engaging in our usual activities. Beyond that, though, days seem to fly by due to the short hours of daylight with little light left once the daily routine has been attended to. It's also chilly and outdoor adventures can be a lot of effort. Often, and this is certainly true for me, we find ourselves picking up our camera less and less. Here are a few tips on how you can stay inspired until spring arrives and new blooms rejuvenate your inspiration. 

1. Keep your camera close

Moments pop up every day that are beautiful and worthy of capturing, but it's easy to miss them when our cameras are not accessible. What's that quote? "Out of sight, out of mind." Purposefully keep your camera in a room where there is a lot of activity with typical indoor settings already dialled in. If your goal is to capture the beautiful everyday moments of your life, then...

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Hello Snow! How to Photograph Beautiful images in Snow

If there's one thing I know a lot about, it is snow! Living in Canada, we can see snow twelve months of the year. Usually, though, we're snow-free for about four or five. Photographing in the snow isn't always easy. You're dressed up in bulky winter clothing, trying to manage your equipment and change your settings with cold fingers while getting pelted in the face with swirling snowflakes...this supposed to be fun, right? Well, indeed, it is! Snow is absolutely magical, and you can capture beautiful images in the snow! Below are a few technical tips to help you make the most out of your snowy photographs this winter. Get ready to bundle up and enjoy the fresh, crisp, beautiful air and snow-filled scenes that winter brings. 

1. Thoughtfully set your exposure

Snow is often very bright, which is actually a great feature because it can act as a natural reflector and bounce pretty light up and onto your subject. However, because it's so bright, it can be easy to...

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Five Images you'll want to Capture this Fall

It’s no secret that I adore summer, but those beautiful days filled with light and warmth are quickly coming to a close. Replacing t-shirts, shorts, and flip flops are all the warm nuances of fall. Fall doesn’t last long around my neck of the woods. Last year we skipped autumn and moved straight into winter. A vicious snowstorm rolled in before the leaves turned their beautiful golden colours, and nature froze instantly. All those leaves fell to the ground in a mess of brown yuck. I’m hoping for more this year when it comes to the autumn season. As nature turns golden, there are five images that I'm aiming to capture. 

1. Outdoor adventure

I’ll admit that I do love the crisp fresh air of fall. Something is refreshing about the scent of dewy grasses, and frost kissed leaves. I find myself breathing a little deeper on my morning walks, enjoying that chill as it expands my lungs. Even with falls' chill, it isn’t too...

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Seven Tips to Create Stunning Flat-lays in Ten Minutes

This week I'm thrilled to feature photographer Nadeen Flynn. Nadeen is a talented multi-genre photographer. Today, Nadeen is sharing tips on how to create stunning flat lays and if you haven't seen her photography before today prepare to be in awe and inspired!

"Thank you for sharing your talents with us Nadeen!"

How many of you have gotten 'the hand' from your kids when you tried to photograph them? Or maybe it was the 'photographer's child' look. If your kids (this includes fur babies) are not cooperative, but you want to shoot and document your days, what do you do? Because we are all busy, I have some simple tips for quick flat-lay setups for you. And, what a great way to still document life, yours and theirs. Here are seven basic tips to get you started with making a flat-lay image in just ten minutes.

1. Light

It's always about light, isn't it? My favorite light for still life is window light. Look around your home and find a window with some nice indirect light. A...

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How to make Valentine's Day Heart Bokeh Overlays

Valentine’s Day is just around the corner! Love, hearts and sparkly bokeh are in the air! In this week’s article, I’m sharing steps for how to create your own Valentine’s Day heart bokeh overlays. It’s a fun and creative technique photographed separately then infused into your images by way of an overlay. Let's get creative and have some Valentine’s Day fun!

1. Preparation

Gather up your supplies! Here’s a list of what you’ll need to create your heart bokeh overlays.

  • Camera and lens hood
  • Black construction paper or card stock
  • Scissors
  • Heart-shaped hole punch (optional)
  • Tape
  • A string of fairy or Christmas tree lights (not LED)
  • A black backdrop (You can use a black trifold or a black blanket)
  • Photoshop

ISO 640 35mm f2.8, 1/200SS

2. Cut out your hearts

It's time to create your heart-shaped lens covers! Detach your lens hood from your lens (if it’s attached) and draw a circle on the black construction paper or cardstock. Cut out...

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Start a Photography Project this Year

A couple of weeks ago, I talked about the value of setting goals to grow and develop as a photographer. In that article, I discussed some essential tips to keep in mind when setting development goals.  One of the points I mentioned was how important practice is to the developing photographer. Practice will help you grow in your technique and as an artist. 

Before starting a photography project, it's essential to consider how much time you have to dedicate to your project. Any attempt at the process of learning will result in positive gains but remember it's a lot more fun when it doesn't feel overwhelming. Choose something that you're passionate about. If you can commit to one passion project, you're more likely to be motivated to pick up your camera even on days when you don't want to. Passion is a powerful motivator! 

Here are a few ideas for photography projects this year: 

1. Daily or weekly project

Project 365s or Project 52s are fantastic ways in which...

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