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episode 23

Photography Q & A Part 2

This post is all about photography questions that have been submitted to us via email or posted on Facebook page. If you have any questions on subjects we might not have covered yet, you still can send them to us and we shall consider them as part of our next episode. This post will cover 5 questions that have come in.

  1. What’s the difference between DSRL and mirrorless cameras?

This first question is from Jeffrey Tomlin. There are a lot of differences as far as how they are built and type of features you can have in there but we shall only tackle some of the bigger or the main differences that would actually be beneficial to a lot of people.

Noise: – The first one is that the mirrorless camera is quieter when you are taking photos and this is due to the fact that it does not have a mirror. In all DSRL, there are mirrors that flip up and flip down and that mirror is there to kind of allow you to see through the viewfinder lens. When you are looking through the viewfinder, you are actually looking at a mirror that’s on top of the viewfinder and then it bounces off a reflex mirror and then you can look through the lens.

This mirror will be gone when you have a mirrorless camera and the reason why it’s quieter is that when you take a picture using a DSRL, that mirror flips up and exposes the scene to the sensors and then flips back down. In essence, when you take a photo with a mirrorless camera, you are basically eliminating that. You are only seeing what the center sees and are not using that mirror and so, when you take a photo with mirrorless camera, you almost hear nothing in a way. Of course, you can hear some sort of sound but with the DSRL you are hearing that shutter or mirror go up and that’s what the click is when you take a photo. That’s one main difference that people talk about when they talk about mirrorless cameras.

Size: – Size is yet another major difference when it comes to these two cameras. A mirrorless camera is a little bit over half the size of the DSRL when everything including the lens is attached to it and weighs a lot less as well. Depending on what kind of version you get, a lot of mirrorless cameras a very compact and this makes it very easy for you to travel with one. The lenses are also a little bit shorter especially if you get a telephoto lens that does not have too much distance extended and you can still zoom into specific length and they have specific lengths but for the most part they are very portable and there are many beneficial things when it comes to mirrorless cameras.

Those are the main differences between the two. Most people go for the size just because if you want a backup camera, a mirrorless camera is probably the best because it’s small, compact especially if you have the brand that your main camera has, you can probably do a little bit of interchangeable lenses and stuff like that. That is the main difference.

  1. How do you shoot and put together a time lapse?

This next question is from Michael.

There are many different ways of doing a time lapse and a lot of people choose to do it traditionally which is like an individual photo. You take a photo after every 2-5 seconds or something like that and then put them together in a movie format. However, nowadays a lot of people have found a shortcut for that and just do one long recording of something. Just take a DSRL and put it on tripod in a movie mode and speed it up. But if you are going for the traditional route of taking photos and putting them together, basically what you are doing is that you want your camera to take a photo again every so often and a normal time lapse being around 5 seconds or thereabout. Every 5 seconds it will take a photo and what you will do to put it together as you take all those photos, you probably don’t want to shoot raw but maybe jpeg to make it easier for yourself and save some space. You take those jpegs and put them together in some sort of a compiler that will put them in a movie format.

There are many different apps you can use to do this but unfortunately, Lightroom doesn’t do this. There is an extension you can get for Lightroom but I haven’t found it to be the best as far as putting images together to make a time-lapse is concerned. But there are other apps you can look at and one of those I particularly use as a Mac or Apple person is called interval and what you do is just import all your jpegs and it knows which ones were taken based on the file names and the count of them. You can make some adjustments as far as basic stuff like exposure, saturation and other stuff is concerned and then click export and it’ll put all those together into a movie file and there you’ll have your time lapse. Windows users have other apps you can find but I can only speak of what I have used an interval is probably the best one and you can find it in Mac APP store.

  1. How do you remove some extreme distortion from your shirt in either PS or LR?

This question is from Matt Harrison

First, when talking about extreme distortion, there’s probably nothing much that you can do. If it’s very bad, you’re probably going to lose much of your image because basically you are turning a wide angle shot that you have with extreme distortions into a normal shot and you are losing a lot of the scene. But there are several ways that you can do this especially in Photoshop where you can use the adaptive wide angle filter. This is a filter built-in Photoshop and it allows you to follow the contour of your photo so you basically draw from one point to another and command that point to be straight and it’ll straighten than point. The more lines you draw, the straighter your image becomes and the more distortion is removed. That’s a good filter to use in Photoshop.

Another thing you can do manually into photoshop is to draw a ruler guide on your photos. If you have the Command+R key, it will bring the rulers and this will allow you to draw straight lines and then you can bring your image into a free transform mode, choose distortion and start warping your image to line up with those rulers. Again, the more rulers you draw the straighter the image will be. Lightroom does not have a lot of tools you can use to remove extreme distortions but you can try the transform develop module and you can choose auto to see what it will do. If that doesn’t work, then you will only be left with the main option which is to use the guided transform that allows you to draw a maximum of 4 straight lines and then it’ll start doing the same thing that adaptive wide angle does. This does a lot of good work as well but depending with the extent of the distortion, you will probably lose a lot of the image.

If you are only using Lightroom, then you are limited to auto transform and guided transform but if you bring it to Photoshop then you might have more luck.

  1. How to you develop your own style as a photographer?

This question is from Dennis Brown

This question is not a “right and wrong question” but a factual question. A lot of people think that developing your own style is developing the kind of photos you actually shoot and that can be a way of developing your style. However, developing your style can be way more than that. It can be the way you process your files, the mood that you shoot, the type of journey that you shoot specifically if let’s say you do portraits and do a lot of very moody portraits for extreme lighting and that’s typically what you like to do, that can be your style.

A lot of people think that when you have a particular style, that’s really all you should shoot. One of the tips I always give people when it comes to building a portfolio is if you are trying to do portraits, you don’t have to do an entire website full of portraits and also if you are throwing a gallery of pet photography or food photography or something like that. You want your portfolio to showcase a specific type of photography, much like if you have an Instagram account and you want to showcase your photos therein, you don’t want to throw in your portrait photos or what you had for dinner that night.

Keeping your style on your website is very important. You want to make sure that your style is showcased to the fullest extent it can be but you also want to make sure that if you are photographing certain things, there are a lot of ways and styles that people use to edit files and if you bring them into Lightroom and typically do certain type of things to the photographs, you are certainly developing your own type of style, method and eventually as you are doing this, you’re going to realize that your photos start to stand out more than others and that can be a good or a bad thing.

You can look at files and wish that yours looked like that but you’ve already started to develop your style. It is a good thing to learn obviously but when you are developing your style you want to keep learning and stay true to what you really like. You don’t want to start editing for other people and hear them saying things like, “that is too saturated’ and then you start de-saturating your photos just because they said so. That’s the way you like to edit your files. There is really no true right or wrong when it comes to photography and creative world in general. If there was true right and wrong, it wouldn’t be a creative field but another factual thing. We are all creative, we all like doing our own things and see things in different ways. Know how to develop your style, know when to come up with the rules and when to break them and that’s really a good thing.

  1. What is the best way to organize your Lightroom catalogue?

This question is from Douglas Daniels

I don’t know whether this is the best way but this is the way I have personally found that it makes it very easy for me to find my files. It also makes it easy to just know that my catalogue is organized. Typically, I create a new folder at the beginning of every year which I’ll give a title of that year. For example this being 2018, I will name the folder “2018.” If I go out and take some photos in a nearby city, I normally come back and create a folder within the new folder which I’ll call ‘cityscape’ and in that folder I’ll call the name of the city and I’ll pit all my photos inside there. If the next day I take some portraits of some friends, I’ll create another folder within the 2018 folder which I’ll call portrait and label it something like “Becky and John.”

I won’t put everything within the 2018 folder but will always create the specific folders within the journal list. This means I’m for example not putting Beck and John in 2018 folder but in the portrait folder which I create inside the 2018 folder. I always create a journal for that particular range of photos. If I go to the beach I’ll do seascapes, if I do regular landscapes I’ll create a landscape and so on and so forth but I keep creating a hierarchy of those particular files in their particular folders as far as the journal goes.

One thing I do but not enough of it and which can consume a lot of time is keywording the images so that when I’m importing them I do it based on their category. It can be time consuming but also makes it easy for you to search your catalogue if you start creating a huge one. If you keyword the images, it will be easy to quickly pull them out especially if you want to look back at the end of the year and see the good shoots that you had.

Those are the 5 questions from our audience and if you have some photography questions of your own that you need answered, make sure you email them to [email protected] and I will make sure they feature in our next post.

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