Watermarks are a popular way of “signing” photographs and deterring theft, but having a giant logo overlaid on your images can ruin the viewing experience. Photographer Klaus Herrmann has one solution: integrated watermarks. He writes,
[Watermarking] seems to be a viable way of protecting your images from online theft, but a watermark can ruin a photo if placed carelessly. Indeed, with a semi-transparent giant piece of text (and maybe Comic Sans as a font) written straight across the image, many people won’t bother looking at the image for more than a second. I have been applying watermarks (or, to be more precise, signatures) to my images for some time now, but I use a different philosophy by making it an integral part of each image, almost as if it was there in the original scene.
He has written up a tutorial on how you can make your watermark look like part of your photo. It’s a pretty time-intensive process, but could be useful for sharing fine-art photography online.
If you’ve ever wondered when, or how, or why you might use a ring light or ring flash, this short lighting tutorial from The Slanted Lens should help you answer all of those questions. In this case, Jay P. Morgan was shooting for Zombie Juice soda and he took the opportunity to explain why he chose to use a ring flash, some of the disadvantages of ring flashes, and how he supplemented it to get the perfect shot.
If you’re creating a short film that requires a “through the viewfinder” clip, there’s an easier way to create it than pointing your camera through an actual viewfinder (does anyone actually do that?). In the short tutorial above, Luke Neumann of Neumann Films shows how you can simulate the look of a viewfinder by overlaying your footage with some focusing screen images. All the necessary image and audio files are available as a free download. Read more…
Video game developers have learned over the years that socially-shared achievements are a great way to encourage beginners to learn new tasks. Taking a page from their book, Adobe has a neat new game called LevelUp that encourages Photoshop learning using the same tricks. Available for CS5 and above, the extension encourages exploration and assigns missions to introduce features and tools that player might never have seen before. Tasks include removing redeye, whitening teeth, and replacing the colors in a photo. Read more…
Want to enjoy a glimpse of photographic awesomeness every time you glimpse at the time at home? Create a giant wall clock with picture frames to mark each hour! You’ll need a clock kit (or a disassembled clock) and 12 picture frames. You can be more serious by shooting photos of the numbers 1 through 12 for the frames, or go creative by putting in all kinds of random images.
For those of you who use your Sony NEX-5N to shoot video, you may have noticed that longer clips have a tendency to lock up your camera. It’s not a problem for shorter videos, but clips over 20 minutes, especially in hot weather, often brings the camera up to a temperature it would rather avoid. To solve this problem, Aron Anderson of trinityfxmg had the idea of modding the camera by adding a battery powered fan to keep it cool even in blistering weather.
So if you have an NEX-5N and want to rid yourself of overheating woes, this video tutorial will show you how to do the mod from start to finish, and even demonstrates the fan in action in brutal 107-degree weather.
It happens every time you press the shutter. Tiny circuits spring into action and furiously record the information from every sensor pixel onto your memory card. But pixel information is not all that is recorded. With every shutter press, your camera records dozens of interesting details about how the photo was taken. These details are tucked away deep inside the labyrinth of code that comprises your photo file. Photo editing softwares, such as Photoshop or Lightroom, can unlock some of this data for viewing later. But they normally only scratch the surface of the available information by displaying only the most commonly used Exif tags.
To mine the deepest depths of your Exif data, you may want to try a utility called Exiftool. This utility is known for its ability to squeeze every last drop of information from your Exif data. Don’t expect a slick, graphical interface, though. Although there are more user friendly softwares which incorporate the Exiftool engine, we’re going to demonstrate Exiftool where it is at its minimalist best – at the command line. Read more…
Trey Ratcliff is the well-known and well-loved HDR photographer behind the travel photography blog Stuck in Customs, and in this behind-the-scenes video he talks you though his gear and how he sets up a few shots of this rocky beach in the Virgin Islands. The video offers some great insight into Trey’s thought process as he composes the resulting HDR images, one of which you can see in higher resolution (including some 100% crops) here.
Here’s a 10 minute photography lesson by Karl Taylor on the four main types of light: transmitted, reflected, soft, and hard. Understanding these concepts can revolutionize the way you see and shoot scenes.