David Hobby over at Strobist shares a fantastic idea for photographers who would like to always have some gaffers tape handy at all times:
So we are gonna make a gaffer’s tape keychain fob […] That right there is 40″ of gaff, effortlessly carried by default, at all times […]
No, no, no. While duct tape may in fact be more manly, gaff is what duct tape wishes it could be. And it is what photographers use because of its holding power and ease of clean removal. Don’t ever mistake the two.
All you’ll need is a paperclip, a wooden pencil, and a larger roll of gaffer’s tape. Head on over to Strobist to read Hobby’s step-by-step tutorial.
Genius: Make a Gaffer’s Tape Key Fob [Strobist]
Image credits: Photographs by David Hobby/Strobist
Here’s a clever trick for if you ever need to print out a photo but find your inkjet cartridges low (or dried out): bust out your hair dryer. Paul Boutin of The New York Times writes,
If your printer’s ink cartridge runs dry near the end of an important print job, remove the cartridge and run a hair dryer on it for two to three minutes. Then place the cartridge back into the printer and try again while it is still warm.
“The heat from the hair dryer heats the thick ink, and helps it to flow through the tiny nozzles in the cartridge,” says Alex Cox, a software engineer in Seattle. “When the cartridge is almost dead, those nozzles are often nearly clogged with dried ink, so helping the ink to flow will let more ink out of the nozzles.” The hair dryer trick can squeeze a few more pages out of a cartridge after the printer declares it is empty.
The trick only works once or twice per cartridge, but apparently it works pretty well.
If you have an old plastic kit lenses lying around, something that you are not using for anything serious, you can give it a new life as a macro lens by removing the front element.
If you regularly shoot in dusty or sandy environments, here’s a handy tip for keeping your camera clean: create a simple cleaning brush that attaches to your camera bag. Digital Camera World writes,
You’ll never bag a great photo with dirty lenses and dusty gear, so keeping your camera and lenses clean and protected is crucial. The front line of defence against dirt and grime is constant cleaning. This isn’t easy if you have to carry around cans of compressed air, blower brushes, fluids and other bulky equipment. Professionals actually tend to use ordinary paintbrushes for camera and lens cleaning, so save yourself money and space [by] making a handy cleaning brush that clips onto your belt.
You’ll need a hacksaw and a drill to “hack” a 25mm paintbrush, and a split-ring and carabiner for attaching it to your camera bag or backpack.
Keep Your Camera Clean with This Homemade Brush [Digital Camera World]
P.S. The magazine also suggests attaching double-sided sticky pads (or tape) to the inside of your lens caps to trap dust that’s floating around in your camera bag.
Looking for a photo project to play around with this weekend? Try exploring a technique known as the Harris Shutter. Invented in the days of film photography by Robert Harris of Kodak, it involves capturing three sequential exposures of a scene through red, green, and blue filters, and then stacking the images into a single frame. This causes all the static elements within the scene to appear as they ordinarily would in a color photo, while all the moving elements in the shot show up in one of the three RGB colors.
For those of you who are desperate for Olympus to release a focus peaking feature for the OM-D EM-5, did you know that there’s a trick you can use for “ghetto focus peaking”?
A French photographer named Nicolas recently found that the camera’s “Key Line” Art Filter actually works quite well as a focus peaking feature. Simply turn on the filter, set your camera to shoot RAW+JPEG, and focus/shoot away. You can throw away the artsy-filtered JPEG files afterward, but the RAW photographs will be precisely focused thanks to the clever “hack”!
Earlier this year, we shared a crazy example of how you can make water drops look like they’re frozen in midair simply by passing the water over a speaker and using sound vibrations to sync the drops with the frame rate of your camera. Well, Japan’s largest music channel, Space Shower TV, has taken the idea and turned it into clever commercial. What you see above is ordinary footage using this trick — there’s no fancy CGI trickery, reversal during post, or high-speed camera footage involved.
If you do any darkroom work, you probably regularly print contact sheets to peek at the positive versions of your B&W negative film strips. Did you know that your iPhone can be used as a quick an easy tool for this same purpose?
Don’t have any more babies to transport? Old strollers can be repurposed as a way to wheel your camera gear from place to place. Just load it up with your camera bag, tripod, lighting equipment, and accessories, and you’ll have yourself a mobile mini studio.
If you own an iOS device, you’ve probably noticed that the Camera Roll in the native Photos app doesn’t come with any way to mark photographs as private. For this reason, the App Store features a large number of apps (both paid and free) designed to offer that feature, allowing you to choose what to show and what not to when someone else is flipping through your photographs. If you want an easy way to “mark photos as private” without having to download a special app (or pay money for a fancy one), Amit Agarwal over at Digital Inspiration offers this simple trick: crop them.