The Photographer's Notebook

 

 

A LEARNING BLOG WITH PHOTOGRAPHY TIPS

FOR THE MOM AND LANDSCAPE PHOTOGRAPHER

How to Find your Editing Style

If there is one single question that I've repeatedly heard throughout my photography journey, it is this one, "How do I find my style?" Finding your style as a photographer, specifically your editing style, is not something that's going to happen overnight. I think that style is ever-evolving throughout the entirety of your photography journey. There are, however, a few indicators that are going to help you solidify who you are as an artist as you go about editing your images in post-processing. The suggestions below can help you find your editing style.

1. Never compare or copy

The photography community is full of jaw-dropping talent. It's easy to feel less than the incredible photographer that you are when you are constantly comparing your images to someone else. Copying the work of other photographers is even more detrimental to finding your style because when you are copying, you are not infusing yourself into the creation of your photographs. 

As an aside here, I...

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5 Tips for Capturing Better Seascape Photographs

This week I'm thrilled to feature the talent of landscape, nature and travel photographer Jennifer Carr. Jennifer's images are filled with pretty, airy light and beautiful colour. Her images are inspiring, and I love how she finds beauty everywhere. Today, Jennifer is sharing her expertise with us on how to capture better seascape images.

"Thank you for sharing your knowledge and inspiring us Jennifer!"


There is no doubt that spending time near the ocean is a relaxing and rewarding experience. Whether you are holding a cup of coffee, watching the sunrise, or sipping your favorite cocktail while the sun sets, the scene is typically a visual feast for the eyes. It’s a moment that you’ll want to sear in your memory bank forever, and there is no better way to do that than through photography. Here are five tips for capturing better seascape images.

ISO 800, f8, 1/200SS 

1. Capture Movement

By using shutter speed creatively, you can choose to...

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My Favourite Photoshop Techniques

 

Adobe Photoshop is an incredibly powerful post-processing program, and I am certainly no expert when it comes to using this program to its full potential. I am always learning new techniques within Photoshop that make my workflow faster and more efficient with just the right amount of creativity. I do, however, have some favourite post-processing techniques that I readily use within Photoshop. Here are a few of my favourite Photoshop techniques when post-processing my images.  

1. Spot Healing Brush tool 

The toolbar in Photoshop holds many valuable tools. When using the Essentials (Default) workspace in Photoshop, the toolbar automatically shows. If you ever accidentally hide this bar, you can reinstate it under the main menu > Windows > Tools. A checkmark should appear next to the word "Tools."

The spot healing brush tool works like magic! When I require small image touch-ups like removing unsightly spots or marks in my images, this is my go-to tool....

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My Favourite Lightroom Techniques

There are so many things to love about Adobe's Lightroom. It's a fantastic post-processing program that can infuse just the right finishing touches into your images. I use both Lightroom and Photoshop in the post-processing of my photos, but I always begin my workflow in Lightroom. Here are a few of my favourite tips and tricks that are specific to my Lightroom post-processing workflow.

1. White Balance

You should always aim for accurate white balance in-camera by using a preset or by manually setting a custom white balance for the type of light you are photographing. However, very often, the white balance in an image needs a touch of tweaking in post-processing. Lightroom makes white balance adjustments simple. Located at the very top of the Lightroom control panels is the Basic panel. There you will find the WB adjustment sliders. It's easy to tweak the temperature cooler towards blue or warmer towards yellow by pulling the slider in either direction. The same goes for tint. A...

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5 Common Editing Mistakes

Photography has some steep learning curves. As a new photographer, typically, the first thing you do is dive into the technical skills needed to operate your camera. Later, you realize that there's also a whole other side to photography. Learning post-processing techniques is not an easy process. But, don't feel defeated by the amount a photographer must learn! Photography is one big gigantic journey filled with uphill trails and meandering paths. That's one of the things I love about being a photographer. There's the neverending opportunity to learn and develop both technical and artistic skills. I think photography is a fun and exciting journey of self-development. Learning and exploring something new often comes with lots of mistakes. In this article, I want to share with you some of the common pitfalls I often see in post-processing. I hope that you'll be able to avoid these errors as you develop and fine-tune your post-processing skills!

1. Too much saturation 

Do you...

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How to Photograph Landscapes in Summer Storms

Summer storm season is just around the corner. I enjoy watching nature and her power, so it's always a treat to see a storm brew up and move through, as long as there's no destruction left in that storm's wake. Up here in the Canadian Rocky Mountains, a thunderstorm can pop up without much warning unload her furry and move on in a matter of minutes. I adore the drama in a good storm and have indeed chased my share of thunderstorms up and down the mountain highways. If you, like me, enjoy capturing a good mountain storm, remember these tips next time the weather turns dramatic. 

1. Be Prepared

A landscape photographer knows that she must prepare for all types of weather. Even on a sunny day, I never venture out without adequate supplies tucked into my backpack. My necessities include a waterproof rain cover for my backpack, a rain sleeve for my camera, a medium-sized, highly absorbent towel, an umbrella, mittens and a toque (that's Canadian for a winter hat).

During a...

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How to Capture Beautiful Sun Flare

Sun flare or, more technically, lens flare can be a beautiful phenomenon in photography. The type of light that creates flare is drool-worthy and almost every photographer I know becomes a little giddy around this type of light. Lens flare occurs when certain types of light enter into a camera lens and bounce around scattering and refracting. The scattering and refracting results in creative haze and artifacts (colourful geometric shapes) that show up in an image's exposure. Lens flare is an effect that many photographers love, as it infuses beautiful creative light into an image. I've put together a few tips for you specific to how you can capture images with beautiful sun flare.  

1. Backlight 

If you are looking to infuse your image with sun-drenched haze and geometric flare artifacts, then you will want to backlight your subject. Backlight occurs when light placement is behind your subject. You will be shooting directly into the light. When you...

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How to Capture the Perfect Swing Image

The days are now noticeably longer, and spring is definitely in the air. That means a lot more outdoor playtime. I know that makes me, my children and our puppy very happy. With more time spent outdoors, there's bound to be trips to the park. I don't know about you, but my favourite piece of equipment at any park is the swing. I still like to hop on pushing myself up high into the sky. Oh, what a joyous feeling that is! These moments of flight are always freeing. I'm sure you agree. My children adore a swing too, even my teenager, and over the years, I've had lots of practice photographing my children on swings. I love the movement and laughter in every swing shot. Today I'm sharing my thoughts on how to go about capturing the perfect swing image. 

1. Use a fast shutter speed

Swings are in motion, and it's vital that you choose a fast shutter speed, or your joyful little subject is going to be a blurry mess in camera. Of course, your shutter speed will...

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How to Critically Evaluate Your Own Images

I think that being a photographer is a truly remarkable experience. We are all on a journey as we go about capturing our everyday moments and growing into the photographers we are meant to be. We learn and grow in our technical abilities and practises, and we also develop as artists in our unique style. Critically evaluating your images is a fantastic way in which you can grow as a photographer. Examining your photos doesn't have to be an exhaustive process; rather, it can be as simple as being curious about how you could have made an image better. Critical evaluation is not only about recognizing what you may have done better, but it's also about highlighting what you did well. Evaluating our images is something I think each of us should do from time to time because this will help you grow as a photographer. I believe that the development of a photographer is twofold. It consists of two meandering side by side paths. One of these paths is in technical skill, while the other...

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Find Beauty in Landscapes In-Between Seasons

Sometimes, it can be challenging to photograph landscape images in-between seasons. Melting snow can be dirty, leafless trees aren't always that attractive, and the leftover muck from winter's freeze can be an eyesore. It's your job as a landscape photographer to find and photograph the beauty that is present regardless of the time of year. There are a few ways in which you can hide or minimize unsightly in-between season elements.

1. Compose thoughtfully

Knowing what to include and exclude within a landscape scene is an important skill to have as a landscape photographer. Thoughtfully compose your scene to eliminate elements that are not overly attractive during the shoulder seasons. Ensure that your main subject is highly visible, as this will draw the viewer's eye, minimizing less attractive features within the frame. Pay close attention to the edges and close objects within your frame. Crop out elements that are not as attractive around your frame edges with...

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