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New Year New Photography Resolutions

2014-01-17 19:41:06 GMT

It’s a new year and you want to better yourself like everyone else. Well, here are a few ideas of ways you can improve your photography skills:

1. Projects
Starting a project is a good way to keep photography at the front of your mind. Invent your own or find something online for ideas that you can borrow, such as the 100 strangers project, project life, 365 project or ABC’s. Look them up!

2. Challenges
Find an online challenge that will push you. There are a lot of photography sites online that do weekly or monthly photo challenges, some of them even have prizes :)

3. Learn a new technique
Take stock of the photography techniques you already know and think about what you want to learn and just do it!

4. Do something out of the ordinary
Playing it safe is boring. Go out on an adventure and try something new! Whether it be something physical or you just want to go for a new look, just do it.

5. Travel
When you travel you see things you’ve never seen before. You see things from a different perspective. This is how you need to look at everything.



6. Keep a journal
Just like writing your goals down gives you a higher chance of succeeding, keeping a journal keeps your creative juices flowing.

7. Tell a story
To create a story with your photographs you need to put in some thought before getting started. You need to come up with a few elements, such as, characters, locations, objects for them to interact with. These are all completely open ended and you can use them to make a story in anyway you feel works best.

8. Learn from a mentor
Following other photographers blogs is a great way to learn from other photographers, but if you’re just starting out find a more experienced photographer you can work with. Be a photographers assistant and use this time to ask questions (without being annoying) and most photographers would be happy to lead you.

9. Learn a business skill
Or, hire someone to do it for you. If you hate billing people and dealing with accounting, your best bet is to learn and online billing service. Do you research and see what works best for you.

10. Join a group
Joining a group is a great way to get out there and meet more photographers. Most communities will do weekly/monthly meetups where a group of photographers (of all levels) get together and often go for photo walks.

11. Take more pictures!
The more pictures you take, the more you’ll notice your improvement.

12. Be more organized
Keep your files organized. Learn to use keywords, tags, metadata, color labels etc. this will ensure all your databases are easily accessible and help you find your images more efficiently.
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ACD Systems Video

ACDSee Pro Photographer Peter Pereira walks us through picking his favorite photos from 2013!

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Speed Up Your Workflow!

2013-12-31 19:30:01 GMT

When you’re trying to perfect your images in a timely manner for your family, friends, and clients to see, you want to do what you can to keep the process speedy and efficient. Here are a few ways to help:

Presets.
With ACDSee you can edit your photo to meet your needs and save the settings as a preset to use on all similar photos. With ACDSee Pro 7 you can use presets in all modes, View, Edit, and Develop.

LCE
Improve areas that are too light or too dark with ACDSee’s patented LCE (Lighting and Contrast Enhancement) technology. This tool instantly lightens shadows, reduces highlights, and can change the tonal range and color balance with ease.

Organized Digital Photo Storage
There are a number of ways to keep your photo storage organized. You can add metadata, ratings, keywords, categories and location details to your images. Quickly identify photos for further processing with visual tags and color labels. You can use these search tools to find photos based on almost any criteria.
Metadata: Metadata refers to any information embedded within a file. For example, digital photos can contain information about the type of camera, flash speed, time of day, image size, and so on.
Keywords: Within ACDSee you can keyword your files in a hierarchy and maintain these groups in the Keyword tree. All you have to do is select the Organize tab in the Properties pane to create, rename, delete, and move your keywords.
Location: ACDSee uses the latitude and longitude information embedded in your photos to lookup the nearest readable address or place name. Simply select a pin on the map, choose “Reverse Geocode” and ACDSee will write the matching location details into the appropriate IPTC fields.
Tags & Color Labels: Tags and color labels are useful for naming and quickly identifying your processing plans for your images. Different colors can be used to represent different stages of your workflow. For example, as you review your photos you can quickly label files to upload, print, reject, review, or sharpen, or any other term that matches your workflow needs. Once your files assigned to that label. You can also use color labels in combination with the Group by, or Filter By features to refine your list. Color labels, like tagging, categories, and ratings, are a way to set aside, organize, and group your photos without moving them into different folders.


Copy & Paste Metadata
This new feature can save you time by copying and pasting all the metadata information from one image to another. You can easily select among IPTC, GPS, and ACDSee metadata.

Keyboard Shortcuts
There are pre-defined keyboard shortcuts for commands that you use frequently in Manage mode and View mode. You can change pre-defined shortcuts, or create keyboard shortcuts for commands that do not currently have shortcuts.

Batch Processing
In ACDSee Pro you can make one type of edit to many images, make multiple edits to multiple images, and save a batch of images to a variety of outputs quickly and easily with the Batch function.

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Macro Photography - A quick how-to.

2013-12-10 18:01:04 GMT



Macro photography is photography magnified. It is generally recognized as “macro” when you are increasing the size of an object in your picture from about half life-size, as represented on the image sensor, to five times life-size.

What you’ll need:
  • DSLR with a bright optical viewfinder.
  • Special purpose macro lens, not necessary but would be nice.
  • A close-up attachment. This is a filter-like lens that mounts to the front of your normal lens and allows you to focus more closely.
  • Ring flash or a flash unit if shooting at a low aperture. It is impractical to use your camera’s built-in pop-up flash because the length of the lens, with or without the macro attachments, will cause a shadow from the camera’s flash.
  • Tripod


Rules:

  • Your f-stop should be no wider/larger than f/16 to get most of the subject in focus.
  • Narrow depth of field. This is unavoidable.
  • Use the fastest shutter speed possible to prevent unwanted subject motion/blur.
  • Autofocus doesn’t always work well when shooting extreme close-up photography. Switch to manual focus and you’ll get more consistently sharp macro pictures.


Be Creative:

  • Shoot from unexpected angles.
  • Try front lighting for deeper color saturation and side lighting to highlight texture.
  • Experiment.
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Need a break? Check out these funny photo apps

2013-12-05 22:27:21 GMT

In a world full of cell phones and tablets, taking photos is super convenient, but when it comes to editing and enhancing right from the source your choices are limited. There are basically only 4 features available: rotate, enhance, red-eye, and crop. These are nice to have, but they’re nothing special.

Now you’re looking for something to make your photos a little more fun and silly (why not right?). check out this list we compiled of our favorite and funniest photo apps!

1. AR Pho.To Cartoonizer
One of the unique things about this app is that you can apply realistic emotions to a face and then animate them. You can even turn yourself into an alien or troll just for fun!



2. ToonPaint
This app doesn’t just convert your images and apply filters, it also allows you to color in your images by painting with your fingers, letting you create different variations of the same photo.



3.Paint FX:
This is an advanced app with filters, effects, enhancements, and more that can be applied to any parts of your image with just a tap or swipe. Meaning, you can pick and choose which parts of the photo you want to change.



4. Artwork Studio
Artwork Studio isn’t just about sketches, you can also transform your photos into oil paintings, comics, and pop art - in just one click.



5. Animal Head Photo Mashup
If you want to amuse your friends and family with a giggle, this should do it! With this app you can superimpose an animals head onto your photo. The app includes 17 animal faces.



6. FacePLANT
You might be thinking this is just another “face-swapping” app, but this one stands out because of its extra features. Additional features include the addition of hats, glasses, and word bubbles, and you can adjust the lighting and color.

7. PhotoFunia
How about putting your face on a billboard or a stamp? This app can do that, and make it look realistic. PhotoFunia finds your face in the photograph and melds it with one of the app’s 300 scenes.

8. Tiny Planet Photos
Turn your world into a tiny planet. This nifty app turns any photo into a convex or concave sphere. Keep in mind that this feature works best with landscapes, properly lined up to create a perfect little planet.

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