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Wedding Photography Tips – Capturing and Editing

Jared Polin November 15, 2010 15

I love photographing weddings, they are extremely fun and allow you to get really creative. Every wedding that you photograph is different and presents a different challenge. Sometimes you are faced with a strange location with not a lot of great backgrounds and other times you are in the most beautiful place. Regardless of where you are you still need to capture images.

This weeks photo of the week brings you an image captured at a recent wedding. I want to start off by saying how amazing it was to work with this wedding party, they did not stop smiling and laughing all day. When you are working with people who are having fun, smiling and just being themselves it makes for a much easier day. To set up this photo I will give you some background on the location.
We were on the banks of the Delaware river in North East Philadelphia at an old estate. The grounds were gorgeous but we faced an overcast day and were loosing light. You may have heard me say this before but I love shooting on overcast days. It is like shooting with a huge soft-box in the sky. A soft-box diffuses the light aka the sun is blocked by clouds which in turn makes for really sweet light.

We needed to capture a full wedding party shot before we lost to much light. There was this amazing path with trees that had their leaves changing. When it came to setting my camera and deciding on a lens I knew I wanted to use the Nikon 70-200 2.8 VRII because it would be sharp corner to corner at 2.8 as well as separate the party from the background. The Nikon D3S was set to 4000 ISO 1/400th of a second at 2.8 manual exposure. Yes, 4000 ISO, I am never worried shooting the D3S that high because it handles it extremely well. Remember, if your exposures are very close and you do not have to make major corrections you have less chance of noise being introduced into your images. I directed to party to walk down the path spread out so I can see everyone and stop at a certain point. I got down on a low angle to add more dimension to the image. As they walked back I used continuos focus to track them while capturing the moment. The best image from the set is this weeks photo of the week.

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Digital Photography Help – Buying Tips

Jared Polin November 14, 2010 28

It is always a tough decision when you set out to purchase your first digital SLR. Should you go with Nikon, Canon or another brand? Should you spend a lot of money on a body and go with the kit lens? What lenses should I buy, mega zoom or fixed focal length? These are all questions I try to answer on this recent Skype Call with a reader.

He is trying to decide should he spend money on the D3100 or the D3000. If he spends the money on the D3100 he will not leave himself with any room to purchase good glass and will be stuck with the kit lens. If he goes with the D300 he will have enough money to pick up a nice starter lens and save a few hundred dollars towards his next purchase.

I feel that a lot of photography when you are starting out is learning the theory and methods behind capturing great images. The equipment will play a roll as you grow but just starting out you want to get a basic knowledge of composition, exposure and editing and grow from there. Once you have the basics down than you can decide which direction to go next and when to upgrade. Just remember glass glass glass before spending money on a body and being left with no good glass.

Feel Free to call me on SKYPE with your questions!!!

click to purchase

Canon EOS 550D / Rebel T2i Unboxing

Jared Polin November 13, 2010 11

It finally happened, Canon has sent a review unit for me to use to test out Canon lenses. The first body they sent is the Rebel T2i / EOS 550d along with the kit lens which I will not be using.

Now that I have a Canon body I can head over to Allen’s Camera and play with any of the lenses that are in stock and give you guys honest straight up canon centric reviews.

So far from setting the camera up it seems to have a much nicer button layout that the Pro DSLRS and the menu system is extremely easy to work. The large 3 inch screen is very very sharp and colorful and will be great for making videos and reviewing images.

I will run it through its paces and see what I come up with. Hopefully, i will get my hands on some other bodies to start to learn their ins and outs.

FroVader Gets a box from Canon

Jared Polin November 12, 2010 10

Today FroVader got a gift in mail from CANON USA, you will find out this weekend what was in it and what he thinks it smells like!!!

FroVader Gets a BOX from Canon

Digital Photography Tips – Blowing out the background

Jared Polin November 12, 2010 9

When it comes to selecting a lens for a specific photo shoot there are so many factors that come into play. Do you want to shoot wide angle and have everything in sharp focus or do you want to shoot super tight and blow the background way out.

In the video below you see Greg demonstrating how by just changing the distance to the camera the background will totally change. The first section of the video is being shot with the Nikon D3s 70-200 2.8 VRI at 200mm. You can see that the background is blown out but you can still make out the shapes in the background. In the second part of the video Greg got closer to the lens and all that changed was the focus. Now you can see that being closer to the lens the background has been totally blown out and anything in the back is unrecognizable.

You don’t always need to have the best glass or fastest F stop to blow out the background. If you get closer to your subject and have a deeper background you can still get a similar effect with a 5.6 lens. Sure it is harder to blow out shorter backgrounds but it is possible with just about any lens.

Now lets look at what happens when you use wide angle lenses vs telephoto. When you use a telephoto lens you are compressing anything in the image, when you use wide angle you are doing the opposite of compressing. For example when I shoot head shots I love using my Nikon 70-200 2.8 VRII because I can isolate my subject form the background. I zoom in as well as get closer to my subject which makes the compression even greater. If I were to use a Nikon 24-70 2.8 and try to get the same portrait at 24mm it would be pretty hard to replicate. The subject would look awkward and the background would probably be really sharp and distracting.

You may be wondering if it is possible to blow the background out even with wide angle lenses and the answer is yes. As you will see at the end of the video, if you get really close to your subject and your focus is much closer the background may still blow out.

Be sure to watch the full video as I go through actual sample images showing you how changing your focus and how close you are to your subject will change the amount you compress the background.