Things to consider before going out looking for great landscapes

After choosing the destination you want to travel, one good tip is to gather all the information you can about the locations and landscapes near the place you’ll visit. It’s good to have a good idea of the customs, sites to see, price and exchange food and accommodation, etc. Consult guidebooks, you will find lots of information and great tips. Almost all Cities and States have an official tour guide on the web.

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How to take great pictures in your backyard

You can take a variety of different photos and photo projects in your backyard, depending on what you are photographing, patio landscaping is not the most exiting option but is something you can do right now without leaving your house. With a camera and a good imagination, you have a number of different options to take pictures in your backyard.

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Great places to photograph exotic birds

Wild bird photography can be quite challenging. There are many articles on the Internet that cover everything from how to setup the camera to how to take the perfect shot when the birds are flying, they share a lot of details but they don’t have much information for an amateur bird photographer. After many experiences photographing birds, I decided to write this guide and include the best recommendations and places to take beautiful pictures.

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Top 5 Internet Marketing Tips For Photographers

This article was written with the help of Jared Lee who is digital marketing expert. He is a Tulsa SEO expert and also runs Vibranium SEO which is a Springfield, MO SEO Agency.

In 2015, we are in the middle of advancing technological like we have never seen, so professional photographers have to identify and communicate with potential consumers any way they can electronically. Advertising terms like “SEO,” “website design” as well as “social networks” can often become mundane and become frustrating, but that doesn’t take away from the fact that they do work when utilized correctly.

If you find yourself lost in your advertising efforts then this list may just be what you need.

  1. Make or Have a Great Looking Website

  2. There is no easier way to showcase your talents as a photographer than to have a website that displays your work and also helps you attract and retain clients. It is also easier than ever to get a website created as you can either have one created specifically for you or you can do it yourself and there are a bevy of options out there that make this easy. Before you do anything carve out your own corner of the internet as your home base.

  3. Be Present Online

  4. One of the best ways to grow your customer base is to get your website to show up higher in the search engines. You’ve probably heard it a thousand times but ranking high in the search engines can grow your business and get you the exposure that before the internet was much more difficult to get. Getting there can be a bit of a challenge so I would advise you work with a reputable SEO agency that can get you where you want to go.

  5. Sell Your Work Online

  6. Make it very easy for your viewers to acquire your photos straight from your website. Many platforms like Wix and WordPress allow your customers to buy your products straight from your website making use of PayPal. There are many photographers who make a great living by selling their work online and they gather a following by doing so.

  7. Sign Up With an Online Gallery

  8. Merely due to the fact that the current economic climate is slow-moving does not indicate that there is no market for your work. There are lots of specialist online galleries where you could present your photos as well as be motivated by the pictures of others as well. Signing up with an online gallery also makes it very easy to work together with various other digital photographers which you may not have been something you didn’t know you could do and can take your business to another level.

  9. Stay Focused on ROI

  10. For every dollar that you invest in digital marketing to grow your brand, keep in mind the ordinary return on internet marketing is $10-$15 for every $1 you spend. You can contrast this to a $3-$4 return on standard marketing methods. If you aren’t seeing these types of returns then you need to perhaps get with an expert that can help guide you in the right direction or at least try something new.

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Traveling to Find the Perfect Photographic Subjects

travel-photoThere are a lot of advantages when traveling to take various subjects for photography. If you wish to break free from your usual subjects, it is in your best interest to travel and explore the world. There are a lot of traveling photographers out there who are still surprised with every subject they have even if they have traveled various locations already. If you wish to travel and take great photos, there are a few things that you need to remember.

Pack everything you need

This is very essential. You cannot go to another place and come back just because you forgot to bring something. If possible, bring backup equipment as well. You might need three batteries just in case one dies out and you have no place to charge. Take along a travel wallet like this one for any important papers. You can also bring a portable battery if needed. You must also have a hard drive that can store more files just in case you have no time to check what needs to be saved and what needs to be deleted. For your personal items, you need to bring just what you need. You also need appropriate clothing for the type of weather in the country you are heading to.

Research the location in advance

It helps a lot if you know exactly what to expect when you visit a particular place. If possible, read all the important details and areas that are not heavily visited. They might be the best places for you to take photos. You should also know how to get there and what mode of transportation to use. If you can get a local guide to help you out, it will be easier for you to move around. You might even get short cuts. This helps a lot especially if you have to beat other people who are also heading to that area.

Start early

If you want to capture the best images, you have to start early. The effects on the photos during dawn are really amazing. When you start early, you can also take more photos and even have some time to rest along the way. You can also beat the traffic since everyone else is still sleeping. It is important to spend a longer time when you are in a place that is quite far since you might not come back to the place again. You need to take all the photos you needed.

Seek for recommendations

When you have friends or fellow photographers who have already visited a specific location before, you can ask help from them. They will tell you which places are perfect for your next photographic subject. They might even give you some tips that you won’t know by just reading. You can also ask local residents and they might lead you to areas that are amazing in photos. You can also visit local bookstores to check post stamps and other images available. This will give you the best ideas too.

Are you excited for this trip now? Make sure you don’t forget anything and you will soon be home with the best photos possible.

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The Joys of Travel Portrait Photography

I find that photographing people is always a great joy.

And when you are able to capture the expressions of people living a different kind of life in a different kind of culture… that is something very special.

Of course there are plenty of opportunities to capture images of people at home and make good money in the process. Maternity photography, personal portraits, model shots, senior pictures… Plus the many other ways to make a living capture great photos of people.

While these methods are both enriching and lucrative you are still capturing images of people in your own culture, people who mostly live the same lifestyle as you do.

But when you are abroad with your camera, especially in more remote areas of the world, you find that your lens reflects back a different kind of personality. One that is both different but familiar, interesting and perplexing.

If you are from the West like many of our readers are you will also encounter extreme poverty and people who lead a lifestyle of serious hardships and experience life and death situations, day after day.

When I was traveling Bangladesh with my camera two years ago I visited an orphanage that was both low on supplies (including food) and dealing with an infestation of a parasitic skin mite called scabies.

The children were clearly suffering. But I decided to take photos of the them and the staff regardless. I usually like to get close to my subjects when I am shooting their portraits, but I could not get close to these children as the skin condition they were dealing with is highly contagious. So I decided to take out my 135mm lens instead of my usual 50mm.

I spent an hour or so photographing these children and I left deeply affected. They were hungry, lonely and dealing with extreme discomfort. But when I looked through my lens they’re smiling faces sent a message of love and hope that you will rarely encounter in your day to day life, even with healthy and successful people.

Two days later when I reviewed and edited the photos I couldn’t help but weep. These children, in my eyes, literally had no reason I could think of to smile at my camera. They were suffering and they had no family to call their own.

But here were there expressions on my screen, still beaming back at me.

Those kids that day showed me that our outside circumstances do not have to dictate our peace of mind. I’m sure that the smiles they gave me were not there all the time. They lived seriously difficult lives. But the fact that they were able to smile for me, a total unknown stranger, for no reason other than to smile because they wanted to really affected me.

I haven’t been on the road taking photos of people since that last trip to Asia. But I have been shooting people back home in Washington off and on for the two years since that trip. In these two years I have never encountered a situation like that trip to the orphanage in Bangladesh. And I haven’t had any photos hit me so deeply, either.

I am planning a trip to India this fall and I encourage any photographer young or old to consider getting out of their culture, and out of their comfort zone, sometime soon too.

You never know how much someone might affect you.

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How to Make Your Subject Relaxed in Portrait Photography Setting

Arguably the most important factor when taking portraits of people is the quality of their expression.

Of course it is important to nail focus, composition, color and camera settings too. But if your subject looks uncomfortable or out of their element then your photo won’t shine.

In this article we will look at some important considerations that you should organize for and plan around when working with a model in a portrait photography setting.

Your Subject Should be Mentally and Physically Relaxed

It’s not just how your subjects face looks. Their body language matters a lot too.

If you really want your portrait photos to shine you’ll need to support both your subjects mental relaxation and comfort levels while also making sure that their body doesn’t get into any unnatural positions.

Unless you exclusively take pictures of seasoned models then some of the people you photograph won’t always know how to situate their body during the shoot. Often times people will contort into all kinds of positions that they wouldn’t usually end up in when they are posing for photos.

It is up to you as the photographer to gently guide your subject into natural more poses when this happens.

A great way to get comfortable doing this is to study some common portrait poses. Start by guiding your subject into easy, relaxed poses before trying more complex ones.

Maintain Constant Communication with Your Subject

Always be willing keep your subject involved and engaged when you are taking their photos.

While many models are comfortable posing in silence, others are not. You never want to be just a silent camera clicking away with a person behind it when your subject is inexperienced or uncomfortable.

Keep talking to them. Be quick to give gentle direction, reassurance and feedback.

Keep a Lighthearted Environment with Music and Scent

Many people who get their portrait taken are not comfortable because they feel like they are in an alien situation.

If your subject matter isn’t at ease then they will end up looking fidgety or like a deer in headlights.

A great tip I learned years ago was to ask your subject before the shoot what their favorite music and smells are.

After I get an answer I will set up our shoot with speakers playing some of their favorite music and incense burning. Or if they prefer natural aromatic smells I’ll whip out an aromatherapy kit and make sure pleasant smells are filling our shooting space.

I was once shooting for a public awareness campaign at a local orphanage. My subject was a girl who had been staying at the orphanage for a few months. She was incredibly shy and I was unable to shoot her in a comfortable manner the first day I was visiting.

At the end of the day I asked her caregiver if she knew anything that helped relax her. The caregiver told me that the girl seemed her best and was able to fall asleep at night quickest when she had lavender essential oil rubbed on her chest.

The next day I brought my essential oil diffuser and some lavender oil to diffuse while we tried taking photos again. This difference was night and day. The girl was far more relaxed during our shoot and I came out with the best photos of the campaign.

Out of curiousity I asked the girl why she was so fond of the smell of lavender. She said that before she had lived at the orphanage she’d stayed with her grandparents and her grandmother would run lavender on her legs and arms to help soothe and heal her bumps and bruises.


It’s the little details like these that can make or break a portrait shoot. The more detail oriented you become the better luck you’ll have at getting great photos.

Do you have any tips or tricks that you know to help ease your portrait subjects?

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How To Do A Product Photoshoot

Recently, I was approached by a company about doing a product photoshoot, as they were launching a new line of weightlifting wrist wraps (you can see them here if you’re interested) and needed some high quality photos. I had never done anything like this before so I was a little hesitant. I reached out to some friends that had done these and they assured me that it’s nothing that I couldn’t handle. I agreed to do it and I must say I was really surprised at not only how great the pictures turned out, but just how much fun it actually was to do the shoot.

It was so much fun, in fact, that I have begun to do more of these. The clients I did the first shoot for spread the word and loved the photos. So after I’ve pulled off a few successful shoots, I figure I’ll share my knowledge and experience I have learned while doing these in hopes that it will help some other photographers out there.

What Do They Want

The first thing you need to do is figure out what the client is wanting from the photos. Have them show you examples of other photos that they like so you can get a good idea of what it is they are looking for. This is important because doing a photoshoot where you are just taking some pictures of a product up close are completely different from taking pictures of people while they are actually using the product. The last thing you want to do is show up on shoot day and not have the right equipment because you weren’t clear about what they were wanting.

Set Up A Great Environment

This can either be really simple or it can be a bit of an undertaking depending on what the client is wanting. For the wrist wraps shoot, they wanted some close-up shots of the product and then they wanted some shots of them actually being used in a gym atmosphere. To do it the right way, I decided it would be best to break the shoot up into 2 days. The 1st day was the close up shots of the product, which wasn’t that difficult to set up. In fact, if you have ever done portrait shots, then it’s the exact same principles just on a smaller scale. The 2nd day was shooting in a gym and I decided to give this a full day because you never know how hard it’ll be to get the lighting right. I didn’t want to rush things and come away with bad pictures. Use your discretion about how to setup the shoot to get the best results.

Take The Same Picture Multiple Times

I learned this from my days when I used to do a lot of portrait shoots and that is to take the same shot with different lenses and lighting. This ensures that you can get the best possible shot and gives your client options to see just what they like the best. You don’t have to go crazy with this. In the wrist wrap shoot, I took 3 different pictures of the product most of the time. I’m glad I did this, as there were times when what I thought would be a great shot didn’t turn out as great as some others. It pays to put in the extra little details that will blow your clients away. I put in the extra effort because I had never done a product shoot before. I wanted to be sure they felt like they got what they wanted and it payed off. I’m getting some more work now in this area.

If you do one of these shoots, just cover all your bases and remember that you want to give the client the shots that they want, not necessarily the shots that you think they should use. You can take some shots that you think will work well and present it to them along with the ones they want as a precaution. Just remember to under promise and over deliver and you will be golden in whatever it is you do.

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Producing Professional Website Images For Landscaping and Building Exterior Cleaning Industry

A few weeks back a good friend asked me to help him with some images for his website in the landscaping and pressure washing niche. I obliged, as any good friend would. In this post I’d like to tell you what I learned about taking pictures of pressure washers in action and give you some tips how to photograph different surfaces like concrete and vinyl. Basically as part of the business he has created a buying guide how to choose which pressure washer people should get based on their needs. And he wanted to get some unique photographs of the machines in action to put in the guide.

Techniques For Action Shots

If you’ve visited this website before you would know I am mostly into shots of scenery like mountains and rivers. It is a much different skill taking shots of people and machines that are 10 feet in front of you. The first thing I did was schedule the shoot for 11am. This made sure that we had lots sunlight to get the images we needed. Sunlight is important because we wouldn’t be using any lights as this was a very low budget production. So on the day he brought out the Generac pressure washer with adjustable pressure and he wanted me to take a variety of photos of him pressure washing different surfaces around the home – driveway, patio, fence and house siding.

For the driveway pictures I took aim at the action of pressure washing instead of him. This is a technique I learned from photography school. You should always focus on the action instead of the person performing the action for website pictures. So I got about 100 different pictures over the 1 hour he was pressure washing the surfaces. Now that the surfaces were partially cleaned he wanted me to take shots of the surfaces to show before/after style shots on a page on his site.

How To Take Pictures of Concrete, Wood and Vinyl Siding

To take pictures of these surfaces is no different than taking a picture of grass. The hard part is finding the right angle to get the best lighting. Do you go directly over it? Do you point at almost parallel to the surface? What I found was a 45 degree angle from the surface worked best to capture perfect lighting to show how much cleaner the clean part of the surface was.

When it came to the vinyl siding it got more difficult to capture the contrast between clean and dirty the closer I got. I was forced to back up 15 feet to get the proper contrast and lighting. I think this was due to the shininess of the surface reflecting the 1pm sunlight into the lens causing a glare.

Editing For The Internet

I’m like most other photographers in that I use Photoshop for all my editing. When doing the editing I had to be mindful that these images were going on a website and not into a magazine or book. The difference is that it needs to be compressed so that it will load fast. Also since most people are often viewing on a mobile phone these days the size of the image needs to be adjusted accordingly. I did all this in 2 hours in Photoshop and my friend had the best 20 images to use for his website. At the moment the pictures aren’t live but I’ll let you know when they do go live.

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5 Tips for Wildlife Photography

There is nothing quite like the beauty of a great wildlife photo, and any photographer interested in nature will most likely want to try their hand at wildlife photography at some point.

Wildlife photography is not without its challenges, however. Animals can be constantly in motion or uncooperative, but there are a few tips that can help you get the most of your wildlife photography experience:

Use The Light
The best hours of light for shooting wildlife photography are early in the morning (get up early and be ready for the sunrise), and later in the afternoon to take advantage of the last hours of light. The midday light can be particularly harsh and lessen the impact of your images, although an overcast day is an exception to the rule and can provide hours of optimum shooting.

Shooting your subjects from a distance with a longer lens will lessen the likelihood of you spooking an animal and ruining the shot. Birds are often best photographed from a distance because they can be disturbed more easily. Using a lens with a focal length of 1500mm or more is generally a good place to start.

Shooting at a wider angle can be provide a powerful image because it can better show the subject in the environment in which it lives. Shooting closer is the flip side of shooting wider and produces its own unique result.

No matter what vantage point you’re shooting from – whether it’s in a boat or in a jeep in the safari – you always want to make sure you’re in the best position. Position yourself so that your subject is facing you, but don’t use artificial means to attract the animal’s attention. This can scare the animal away, while waiting for the animal to turn towards you, or exhibit a certain natural behavior, will produce a more natural a rewarding shot.

It sounds obvious, but the old adage of ‘practice, practice, practice,’ applies to wildlife photography as it does to most anything else that requires developing a certain skill. That said, you can practice closer to home before heading to the wild, whether it’s shooting dogs at a local park, birds flying at a nearby lake or the pesky ones on your balcony, or horse racing at the track (or in a jumping competition). All of these can help you get comfortable with your camera setting and being ready when that right moment in the wild presents itself.

Finally, you’ll need all the patience you can muster while shooting wildlife photography, for a variety of reasons. Foremost is the fact that animals in the wild can be anything but predictable. Getting to thoroughly know your subjects and their movements and habits is essential, and requires plenty of patience.

Your own hasty movements can scare your subject away, so you’ll need to move slowly or wait for your subject to come to you. Just know that the shot you’re looking for doesn’t always come while you’re in what you believe is the best location.

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The Benefits Of Entering A Photography Competition

It’s not always easy to get your photographs out into the wider world. While you may take stunning photographs, it’s not quite so simply getting them into the public eye. A great way of getting your work out there and increasing your visibility is to enter photography competitions. There are some amazing competitions out there, for all different types of photography, so you can be sure to find something that fits your style.

Why Enter a Photography Competition?

While using online platforms such as Flickr and Facebook are a great way of showcasing your work to your peers, it doesn’t quite carry the same weight of having your pictures judged by professionals. Entering a photography competition can be a greatly satisfying experience and helps you to really push yourself to capture award winning photographs.

Not only does it give you the opportunity to get you work out in front of the experts, but it can also lead to the kind of exposure people tend to dream about. So many people will view your photographs and this can be a hugely rewarding for any photographer. Let’s not forget about the fantastic prizes you can win.

Depending on the competition, you can win anything from cash prizes, to gift cards, photography equipment and even master classes with the professionals. Imagine winning your very own exhibition space! These are the kinds of prizes and opportunities that can lead to greater exposure and better photographs down the line.

A Great Experience At Every Age

We recently had a young photographer write us about her experience of entering an under 18’s competition all the way in Newcastle. Here is what she had to say:

“I love photography and this year had an amazing chance to take part in a photography competition in Jesmond. I entered the ‘Wildlife in Jesmond Dene’ category for those aged 12 to 18 years old. With a grand prize of £60, I thought this was an opportunity I couldn’t miss.

My mother took me to stay at a boutique hotel in Jesmond overlooking the park so I was able to go out and take pictures as soon as I got up in the morning. I was able to get some really great shots of some of the birds and squirrels in the park and it was such a fun experience. While I didn’t win, I would recommend this to anyone no matter what age as it is a great way to challenge yourself and meet people in the photography world.”

How Can I Enter One?

There are great websites out there that list all the competitions currently being held, including information on the kind of prizes up for grabs. Some even provide you with photo contest tips so you can really help to improve your chances of winning. It’s about more than just taking a great photograph; it’s about really understanding what the judges in each competition are looking for.

Competitions have all sorts of different categories, from wildlife, to landscape, food and music. There is a little something out there for everyone, so play up to your strengths and interests and find the competition that suits you. You never know, you may just win yourself an excellent prize.

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Top 5 Puppy Photography Tips

There are few images as captivating and precious as the ones taken of puppies. Puppies are by nature precocious animals that touch the hearts of everyone in their presence and when the right photograph of them is taken.

However, as with children puppies are still in the learning stages and will have naturally short attention spans and will not respond like adult dogs to the camera. So, you will have to employ a series of tips and tricks in order to capture that perfect, precious moment that only a puppy can deliver for your photograph.

What follows are five top photography tips that will help you get the most out of your session with puppies. Before you start taking photographs, it is important to have the right setting that is safe and protected because puppies are vulnerable to catching illnesses. This also means that anything chewable needs to be safe as well or at least kept away from the puppy like your camera gear.

Let the Moment Happen

Perhaps the most important piece of advice is that you should not try to force a great photograph or attempt to create the perfect pose or look for the puppy. You’ll only get frustrated which will make the session even less productive. Instead, you should try to create a fun, happy atmosphere that keeps the puppies happy and entertained.

Wear them Out

A puppy is a bundle of energy that is raring to go. So, before you start the photo session, play with them so they can expend that energy. While they will still have plenty left, it will take the edge off of the puppies and slow them down just enough to get better photographs. Make sure you reward the puppy with some delicious puppy food after the session. You’ll still need to use a fast shutter speed and plenty of light to capture the right photograph.

Go to Their Level

Like all dogs, puppies tend to focus on the ground instead of looking up. So, you can get better photographs if you get down more to their level. This will mean being on your knees or even in a prone position to get the right shot. However, this will pay off as you will see more of their faces which make for the best photographs.

Be Gentle with Timid Puppies

Not all puppies are open and playful as many will actually be scared of being in new surroundings. So, start off with having the timid pups playing with their owners so that they can relax. In fact, you might be able to capture the perfect photo by backing off and using a telephoto lens. By keeping your distance at least at first, you can help bring out a timid pup’s playful side.

Go Where the Puppy Takes You

By letting the puppy explore and play, you can follow them and get some pretty amazing photographs. You will want to contain the pup to certain areas, but for the most part letting them lead will help relax them so that they are more playful and provide you with the perfect photograph.
By following these tips, you can get the most out of your photo session with puppies and in turn increase your chances of getting that perfect photograph.

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Rice Terrace Photography in China

I am a rice-lover and even have a really nice high-end rice cooker, so I’ve always wanted to photograph the stunning terraced fields you find in some Chinese locales. While Californian rice fields are generally uninteresting wide, flat expanses in China there are some hilly and mountainous areas where by necessity fields must be created on hillsides. Since rice can only be grown on level land (rice fields must be flooded and water runs away on a slope) steps had to be carved out of the hills so that flat areas could be created. These flat areas are generally evenly spaced vertically so that it naturally becomes easy to see the contour of the land in a way that it difficult with only light and shadow. It is like a contour map has been superimposed on the landscape. So today I thought I’d share a few tips on choosing locations to photograph terraced rice fields in China. In particular the Longsheng rice terraces.

Xishan Shaoyue 西山韶乐 – Our first spot is Xishan Shaoyue. It is the most popular place for rice terrace photography in Longsheng and for good reason. There are three separate sites all visible and easily accessed from Xishan Shaoyue and most of the really stunning photos are taken in this area. As is usual, best times for captures are in the morning and evening.

Qianceng Tianti 千层梯田 (Thousands Layers Fields in English) – Qianceng Tianti is not nearly as picturesque as Xishan Shaoyue and has only one site rather than three. To get memorable shots here you will need good timing, patience and persistence. Perhaps a misty day where clouds give more relief and depth to the scene?

Jinfoding 金佛顶 (Golden Buddhist Summit in English) – This site is further afield and as such is less frequented. If you want to be the only photographer on site this is the location for you. Travel lightly here, though, as it can be a long walk for the out-of-shape. Hiking time is between one hour and two hours depending on your pace, so take some food and your usual short hiking gear including survival knife and compass . Due to sun position this location is best shot in the evening.

Best Times For Shooting

From mid-May to early June: the rice terraces are full of water and the reflections will make for some interesting effects. Workers begin transplanting after the first week of June for about one week, so there will be people on the terraces making it easier for viewers of your photos to judge scale, and adding human interest.

Early October: At this time the rice is ready for harvest: the terraces look like soft swaths of gold.

On snowy winter days: If you are there in winter you will get some unique shots if you are lucky enough to be there on one of the few snowy days. But, if there is no snow, winter is a pretty uninteresting time on the rice paddies – there’s no water in the fields and everything is a dull brown.

From July to early August: Fresh rice shoots are coming up at this time – think vibrant green steps.

Enjoy, and good luck getting that award-winning shot!

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Selling Athletic Shoes with Photographic Art

Big brands have always used professional photographers to sell their products. In this article I take a look at some of the best adverts ever created, using photography as the main focus.

Reebok CrossFit – Realflex

Back in 2011 Reebok commissioned a whole production team to produce a set of “action” photos to be used in their new ad campaign. The advertisements were promoting the company’s new range of CrossFit shoes called “Realflex.” The ads also had another objective, and that was to highlight Reebok’s new-ish affiliation with the fast-growing sport of CrossFit (see site).

The Realflex shoe was a flop and was quickly replaced with the Nano. The Nano is now in its fourth year of production and has been a big hit with the CrossFit community. Reebok’s affiliation with CrossFit has also been successful, and the company still sponsors the annual CrossFit Games held in California.

The original set of ads was very well executed and does a good job of capturing a staged moment in time. I do feel one or two of the photos could have been more realistic, however one of the ads ticks all the right boxes and was worth the entire team effort. You can see my personal favorite ad here.

Nike – Air Max

Back in 1987 the world was a very different place. No mobile phones (or should I say “usable” mobile phones), no public Internet, and you still needed to use your imagination when watching a movie, as CGI was still in the making.

During this time period I was still a child. I remember scrolling through a random magazine in a store and instantly my addiction to sneakers began with my first visual of the Nike Air Max. I’ve tried searching for the exact ad that I discovered, but the closest match I could find was this (see here).

This ad and shoe are the reasons why I take photos — it sparked a fascination with the brand, the shoe range and product advertising, all in one flick of a page. If I live to see 100-years-old I am confident I will never have a more influential experience ever again.

Every aspect of this ad spoke to me, and looking back at it now, I can see why. The shoe is hovering and glowing. It looks futuristic (even now). I knew I wanted them there and then, but I also knew I would love wearing them even before I tried them on.

I know I am not alone when I talk about how good the advertising was by Nike back in the 1980s. I would even go as far to say it was genius, and I am not just talking about the Air Max. The Air Jordan brand enabled Nike to dominate the basketball industry for years. Even after Jordan’s retirement they still managed to keep the brand going, making Michael Jordan a billionaire.

If Jordan is a billionaire, can you image how much money Nike has made from awesome advertising and marketing.

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A Beginner’s Guide to Different Types of Photography

In the past, photography was only for those who took classes and studied about the basics of photography and those who wanted to become professional photographers. It has not become mainstream until a few decades ago when advancement in technology has improved and cameras have become affordable and more user-friendly, and taking photos have become a must in every occasion.

The advent of social networking sites over the past several years has pushed photography into the forefront of social media. Updating your social media account is no longer complete if you do not post a photo or two. This is what made photography not just a profession but a mainstream hobby as well. Digital cameras have become smaller and smaller and smartphones feature cameras with high resolutions that can compete with those of digital cameras. With smartphones, you no longer need to carry a separate camera around. But if you want professional looking photos, digital cameras are still the way to go.

Photography subjects are no longer limited to landscapes, people and such. Anything you see around you can be used as a subject, even those as mundane as a fly. Here are the different types of photography.

Nature and Wildlife Photography

This is one of the most famous types of photography. Nature shots –beaches, grasslands, forests, waterfalls, etc., are the favorite nature subjects of photographers. Wildlife photography on the other hand captures different types of animals in their natural or man-made habitats. Animals in their natural elements are very popular subjects among wildlife photographers, using very powerful lenses so they can capture their subjects even from a far distance. 

Macro Photography

Macro photography takes photos of small things in vivid details. It uses a special type of equipment, the macro lens. This type of lens zooms in on the subject with clear precision to capture the minutest detail of the subject. 

Aerial Photography

Photos taken from high above are categorized as aerial photography. Photographers ride in helicopters or small planes to capture images from a high altitude that otherwise cannot be taken with precision when taken from the ground. Aside from riding an aircraft, recent technology has allowed photographers to mount their cameras on drones that are remote-controlled. This way the camera angle can be varied as the photographer requires. 

Commercial Photography

This type is done to showcase a product and present to consumers the product’s specifications, physical appearance, etc. Appliance photography shows consumers the best rice cooker as shown in this site or other products and how you can benefit from them based on their specs and features. Product shots also come with home appliances reviews at sites like so consumers can compare different brands and types, not only through the specifications but through the high quality photos as well. 

Sports Photography

Sports players in action are the subjects of this type of photography. Special camera equipment are used in this type to be able to capture moving images clearly and without any blurs. 

Underwater Photography

Underwater life is showcased using special underwater cameras. Regular cameras cannot be used in underwater photography unless the equipment specifically indicates otherwise. The richness of marine life is captured not just for show but for study and research as well.

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4 Tips for Great Outdoor Photos

In a world where so many of us own a digital camera, just about anyone can fancy themselves as a photographer. Of course, there is a big difference between being able to take photos and being able to take good photos. Venturing outdoors can make it even tougher to take a quality photograph, even though it gives photographers the opportunity to capture something unique and beautiful. Make sure that once you get comfortable getting pictures of things like sunsets and other natural features, try giving some new things a try (like action sports or wildlife). For those photographers hoping to take great outdoor photos, here are a few tips to help you out.

The first thing you should know is that the best light is either the half hour before sunrise or the half hour after sunset. Using the sun properly is a key component to any outdoor photo, and the times around sunrise and sunset create the most unique combination of light and shadows for taking photos. It may not seem the like the obvious or optimal time to be out taking photos, but not having direct sunlight is advantageous for outdoor photographers, and if you make a point to head out and take photos around sunrise or sunset, the difference will be obvious and you’ll be pleasantly surprised with the results.

You should also be cognizant of composing outside photos, as they can be a lot more complicated and contain more variables than indoor photos. Amongst the light, sky, terrain, and any other objects that may make an appearance in your photo, there’s always going to be a foreground, middle-ground, and background in an outdoor photo, and you need to be aware of how they relate to one another. If you’re careful and meticulous about how you frame things and make sure that everything in the photo serves a purpose, you’ll be able to take spectacular outdoor photos.

Another key to taking outdoor photos is using the horizon in the right way, as the horizon line can be a great tool for taking beautiful and unique photos of the great outdoors. If you put the horizon in your photograph, always make sure that it’s either at the very top or the very bottom of the frame; never put it in the middle. The point of putting the horizon in a shot is to either emphasize the sky or the ground (possibly a body of water), and so you should get as much of the sky or ground in the photo as possible. This is accomplished by placing the horizon at either the top or bottom, dedicating as much space as possible to the phenomenon you’re hoping to capture in the photo.

Finally, when taking outdoor photos, don’t be afraid to explore and try new things (one thing I’ve really gotten into lately is wildlife photography – specifically big game like elk and deer ) . For example, try using a wide-angle lens. The outdoors know no borders and neither should your camera, so try to broaden your scope with a wide-angle lens that will allow you to capture more of the environment around you. Obviously, it’s impossible to capture the entirety of the environment around you in one photo, but a wide-angle lens will help you to get as much as possible in one photo, and that should be your ultimate goal with outdoor photography.

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