Depth of field

 Photographic Tips are so useful.When I’m out shooting and whether I’m by myself or running my photo workshops/tours, it’s always important to look at not only the different angles that one can shoot, but also to look at the depth of field.How much of the picture do I want in focus. Do I limit the depth of field so it becomes very shallow or do I have a greater depth of field in the picture. By limiting your depth of field you are highlighting just the subject. It will be sharp (providing you have focused correctly)  and your background will be blurred.Your eyes are drawn to just the subject and there are no distractions….Read More

Vertical vs Horizontal

[p]Photographic Tips are there to enhance what you take and this is another photographic Tip for you. When you are out shooting and you have your subject picked out, before you take your shot, make sure you look through the camera both horizontal and vertical to see which fits better, which composition looks better, feels right. There are times when both are fine and will give you a different feel for the shot although you have just taken the same subject.Don’t just get use to the same view point, mix it up and below is a series of shots to demonstrate this.:)[/p]

Lightning in the day

Photographic Tips are far and wide and will enhance your picture taking. Lightning during the day, how do I capture this? Well you can stand there  and press when you thing you saw it coming and I have done this on many occasions. There are times when you press just at the right time and you have nailed it and there are times you miss it. In my case I missed more than I captured the image during the day. That was also back in the day where film was the go, so as you can imagine,this was an expensive exercise.

To over come this today, you can buy The Lightning Trigger. This small compact and very light device is sensational. It connects to your camera and is mounted on your hot shoe on top of your camera. It comes with instructions and is very easy to use and the results are awesome when you have lightning. It’s very sensitive  and will take pictures even if the lightning in not in view of your frame. I’ll post a picture of the lightning trigger soon. They are worth several hundred dollars but so worth it as it takes the guess work out during the day.

This is the link to where I bought mine. It’s a good site as it has lots of useful information that is worth knowing. Have fun shooting your lightning during the day:) IMG_9909
ND Graduated Filters

[p]ND Graduated Filters are amazing in balancing your exposures. Come with me on my day workshop and learn how to use these awesome devices and see how it will improve your photography. Below is a video taken on the workshop. For details click here [/p]


[p]Often when we are out  and about taking pictures we tend to stand in one stop, lift the camera to our eye and snap, we are done. Have you ever thought about putting some interests in your pictures? Why not vary the angle. The images below demonstrate how easy it is to add  a little more interests to your subject.[/p]

[p]The first picture is what most people would take. People come across their subject, in this case a group of lilies  in a field, snap and they walk on. The second picture shows a little more interest in the picture.By getting down on your tummy and shooting ground level  you can change the whole feel of the pictures.

[p]Now if you are at an age where getting down is hard, then if you have a camera that has a flip out screen, then place the camera on the ground, pull the screen out and you’ll be able to see what you are going to be able to take. Put your camera on self timer press the shutter and stand up and wait for the camera to take the pictures for you. Try it this week some time. Take two pictures of the same subject , one from standing level and one from the ground level and email them to me  as I would love to see what you come you with. Pete:)[/p]


IMG_6661blog  For this small task, you can email the pics to  I give you this email address as when I’m on the road, i can access email address a lot better than my business email address:) [/p] Understanding Light

 Understanding Light  – A photographic tip is a key to better photography. When you are understanding light and how light works, the light blub is switched on and it becomes brighter.

I have many people comment through email about the shot you see below and how did I take the shot. I need to say from the outset that no external flash was used, not other electronic devises were use, just my hands….Read More

Waiting For The Light

[p]When you are out in the field shooting, always look skyward and see where the sun is. We are always in a hurry to take our shots and then run. There are times when waiting 10 minutes can be all the difference of having a scene lit up evenly and it can change the feel of the picture.[/p]

[p]Looking skyward has many advantages  and if there are clouds about and you see a scene that is in half shade and sun light, then it may be wise to wait for the sun to light the entire scene up.When a scene is in half sunlight and shade there are times when it can work and other times it doesn’t work. [/p]

[p]Photography is very subjective as what one person really likes another may not think too much of it. [/p]

[p]In the example that I have given here, I prefer the sunlight lighting the whole scene and all I had to do was wait 10 minutes for the sun to pop out.[/p]

[p]As I mentioned before, there are times when a landscape is part shadow and part sunlight and can be very emotive and be such a strong image.[/p]

[p]The purpose of this photo tip is to make you aware of what is above you and if the scene in front of you would look better all lit up, then wait for the sunlight to emerge from the clouds as it can make all the difference to your shot. [/p]

[p]Just a little patience is needed. Pete:)[/p]

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[p] When you are out there traveling, looking for patterns that can add interest to you pictures. In this picture I was taken not only by the sky about me, but by the texture and on going patterns on the dirt road.It’s always good to be able to see if you are on going patterns that keep repeating themselves as they add interest into your pictures. They can also be emotive, thought provoking and pleasing to the eye. Go look for your patterns, keep your eyes open and you’ll be surprised how often they are out there ans yet, at times we fail to see what stands before us. Enjoy the patterns.Pete:)

The Sequence Of Shots

When I’m out shooting for myself, I always try to take a series of shots that show the progression of a series of shots on a particular scene. Try this and this will add interest to the people that will view your shots. It’s also a good way to keep your audience interested and keen to see what you might be showing next.

Now to do this, make sure you use a tripod as you want to same position kept so it is easy on the eye when people are making comparisons when they look at your shots and using the tripod will also help into creating sharp pictures.

Once the tripod is set up, you then need to set your camera on continuous shooting, particularly if you are doing quick moving subjects like waves, cars, trains, people and so on.

Make sure your focus is spot on , if it is not, then you have killed your shots. The other thing to be aware of, if you have the camera on the tripod, make sure your image stabilizing switch is off.

All the best with capturing your sequence shooting.




Macro World
Marco world of photography is an exciting part of photography to get into .What I love about the amount that I do and it is nothing compared to others, is that you are seeing things that you would normally just walk past and so on. Once you start to think Macro World, then you will notice things that you haven’t before.They have always been there but we have just walked past it all…Read More

Shallow Depth of Field

The good thing about photography is that there is so much to learn, to explore and to experiment with. In this small tips section, it’s about using a shallow depth of field to create impact in your pictures.

Usually when we take a landscape scene we want the foreground, middle and background to be sharp in focus. Now I know there are exceptions to this so I’m speaking in general terms for those wishing to understand the concept here and this is aimed at those just coming to terms with their new found love in photography.

We do this by carefully choosing the right f-stops or aperture which are usually around f16 or f 22 and this will have the entire scene in focus.

At the opposite end of the scale if we chose the lower f-stop numbers, 2.8, 4, 5.6 and at times f 8 , we can isolate the subject and this is using a shallow depth of field. This is really an exciting lesson to learn as once you have understood this, you can vary your shots.

Isolating your subject means you draw your viewer straight to your subject and there are no distracting background behind the subject.

An advantage of learning how to do shallow depth of field is as follows- Lets say you are taking a lovely shot of your mum or dad or friend and you have fences in the background that you don’t want as you find it too distracting.Through using a shallow depth of field and using the right lens, you can blur it right away in camera and your subjects don’t have poles growing out of their heads and so on.

I can hear some of you saying, ” Ah, I can do that in photoshop !” Yes you can, but I’m a firm believer to get as much right in camera so you can spend as little time sitting in front of  a screen. We are all different, but this is my outlook, spend less time on your computer and more time out in the field having fun with your camera.

Now this effect will vary a little depending on the lens that you are using  and how close the subject you are when shooting.

Generally speaking, you need to use a zoom lens or fixed telephoto lens where you can be zoomed in. The more you are zoomed in, the closer to your subject you are, the more you  will burr the background out.

You can do this to any subject, ranging from people,animals and even landscapes. I know I mentioned earlier that you  normally want all of the landscape in focus and most people when they’re taking an overview of their landscape will chose to have the entire scenes in focus .There are times when you may want to isolate something in your landscape so you draw your viewer to that point of which you wanting to highlight.

Below you will see some examples where I have used a shallow depth of field. All of the images that are in this exercise are taken with either a fixed telephoto and for those who are new to photography and you are reading this( thank you for joining me here) a fixed telephoto is a lens that cannot be zoomed in or out, whatever the lens is, e.g. 400mm, 300mm, 200mm, 100mm, that’s it: you can’t zoom in with them. The only way that you can zoom in or out would be to physically walk closer to your subject or to walk away form the subject.

What I love about using a shallow depth of field is that you chose what you want your viewer to see. You are showing them through your eyes , what you see as important in the shot.

To get the best results it will come when you understand how to you use camera manually .I run day workshops where I teach you “ getting of auto” and I have one called Understanding Depth of Fields which is what we are discussing here one on the next level.

Using your camera on auto, you can create the above effect if you put your dial on the portrait mode on your camera and providing you are zoomed in you to your subject you’ll get the same effect as what I’m referring to.When you have the dial set to this, it chooses the aperture for you and it chooses one around the f4.5, f5.6 and this will give you the desired effect.

So why bother with the manual side of things with your camera then which you can get the same result in auto?

When you know how to use your camera manually, when you understand the f-stops and depth of field and in this case, a shallow depth of field, you will be able to be far more creative  control when using your camera than on auto and in portrait mode.

Knowing the manual side of your camera will enable you to be able to fine tune to a degree of what you want in focus and what you don’t. This will put you to the next level and your creativity will increase as well.

So go out, have fun using a shallow depth of field and see what you come up with.











Shooting into the Sun-Is it ok?

Years ago we were taught never to point the camera and take a picture if you are looking towards the suns direction. Nothing could be further from the truth. There are outstanding pictures to be taken into the  direction of the sun. These will be posted a little later.

These two pics show the basic thing you need to be aware of when shooting in the direction of the sun. Make sure you cast a shadow over the entire lens and this will take away sun flare and will give you the texture and colour that you need. If you forget to do this, then as the first pic shows, your shot will be washed out and the sun glare destroys the picture.

Always when shooting in the direction of the sun, make sure you have a shadow over your lens. This can be done with holding a cap over your lens or simply standing in the shade of a tree and so on. 🙂


Shooting into the sun with no shadow over the lens.