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  • The Godox AD400 Pro is the best value for money strobe Godox has ever made

    The Godox AD400 Pro is the newest portable all-in-one strobe from Godox. It’s basically a 400Ws version of the AD600 Pro. It has a few design differences and a little less power, but basically an identical feature set. I’ve been playing with the AD400 Pro over the last couple of weeks to see how it […]

    The post The Godox AD400 Pro is the best value for money strobe Godox has ever made appeared first on DIY Photography.


    Source: Diyphotographynet

  • German tourist trampled to death after approaching elephants to take a photo

    Last week in Zimbabwe, a German tourist was trampled to death by an elephant when she tried to get closer and take a photo of the animal. The officials said that the 49-year-old woman was attacked by the elephant, and she later succumbed to her injuries. A spokesman for the Zimbabwe Parks and Wildlife Management […]

    The post German tourist trampled to death after approaching elephants to take a photo appeared first on DIY Photography.


    Source: Diyphotographynet

  • How to do Portrait Photography in Bright Midday Sun

    In photography, learning and knowing how to use and manipulate light will always be an advantage. Especially when it comes to portrait photography because you aren’t always going to photograph your clients in the most ideal light.

    wedding couple by the pool - How to do Portrait Photography in Bright Midday Sun

    Sometimes you don’t have a choice but to put your clients in direct sunlight.

    Backlight your subjects

    You might think that backlighting can only apply during sunset hours, however, it can be used any time the sun has passed its peak. Once the sun angles a bit, you are able to backlight your subject.

    This technique is best to keep direct sun off your client’s face and avoid those weird shadows that happen under the eyebrows, nose, and chin.

    How to do Portrait Photography in Bright Midday Sun - family on the beach

    Backlighting your clients can help minimize shadows.

    It also helps to keep people from squinting. Keeping your subject’s face away from direct sunlight will also help keep them comfortable during the session. Beware of backgrounds as well because sometimes, to keep the light of your client’s face, it may mean having them in front of ab undesirable background.

    couple by a river - How to do Portrait Photography in Bright Midday Sun

    Backlighting can also add lens flare to your photos in an artistic way.

    Try your best to position your subjects away from direct sunlight while still keeping the background that you desire.

    Use reflectors

    Luckily, because the sun is high in the sky, and most likely really bright, you’ll have big natural light reflectors at your disposal.

    Natural reflectors are great to bounce light back onto your subject without having to spend tons on expensive photographic gear. They are found at the location and can fill in the shadows nicely.

    family on the beach under a palm umbrella - How to do Portrait Photography in Bright Midday Sun

    Use a shaded area to help with bright sunlight. The sand also acts as a natural reflector and bounces light back onto people’s faces.

    Natural reflectors include big parking lots, sidewalks, windows, big light-colored walls, silver or white cars, buildings with silver or reflective paneling/architectural designs, light-colored cement walls/floors, sand at the beach, and any found natural reflective surface.

    wedding couple on the beach - How to do Portrait Photography in Bright Midday Sun

    Use the sand as a natural reflector. Use trees to create a frame within a frame.

    Backlight your subject when the sun has passed its peak and position them in front of a large natural reflector to bounce light back onto their face.

    Professional photographic reflectors are also great to use if you have one already. Position your subject with their back to the sun. Use the silver side of the reflector to bounce light back onto them.

    Be careful not to aim the reflected light directly into your subject’s eyes as it can be really bright, almost as strong as direct sunlight. Angle it a bit until you find enough fill on their face.

    family outdoors - How to do Portrait Photography in Bright Midday Sun

    Backlighting your clients can help with shadows.

    Make sure you do not place your reflector on the floor pointing upward at your client. This will cause the light to bounce upward which will give you odd unflattering shadows on the face. Rather, have a stand or a friend hold the reflector up so that the light bounced back is around torso height.

    Be careful when using the white side of the reflector during midday sun as this can cause your client’s face to wash out and look opaque.

    Use a scrim to diffuse light

    Some reflectors, especially the 5-in-1 kind, come with a translucent side. This translucent reflector helps to diffuse sunlight without completely blocking it out. You can also make your own using translucent fabric and a PVC/hula-hoop.

    How to do Portrait Photography in Bright Midday Sun

    Hold the scrim over your client’s face or body to diffuse the light. Be careful of your backgrounds. If your background is brighter than your client, the background will be overexposed. If possible, try and match the light on the background to the light on your client.

    Scrims are especially effective if you are going for close-up photos of your client.

    Slightly underexpose

    Underexposing while photographing in bright midday sun can help you get less washed out backgrounds. Underexposing your photo can also help retain details that otherwise get lost if they are too bright.

    bride and groom kissing by a pool - How to do Portrait Photography in Bright Midday Sun

    Put your clients in direct sunlight to get a different look.

    After the session, you can bring up the shadows in your editing program of choice without losing detail in the rest of the image. Underexposing 1/2 – 1 stop can also help to keep the background details intact.

    family photo - How to do Portrait Photography in Bright Midday Sun

    You can also expose for both your clients in one photo and in the next expose for the background. Later you can merge both photos so that your final photo is exposed for both the people and the scene.

    This will also look a bit like HDR which gives your photo a more artistic and dynamic look. Make sure that both photos are taken using the same lens, at the same distance, with the same framing so that both images line up. Otherwise, it will be more difficult to merge the photos in an editing program.

    couple in black - How to do Portrait Photography in Bright Midday Sun

    Try to avoid photograph clients in really bright backgrounds otherwise, you’ll get this washed out background and lens flare.

    Use flash

    Flash is a great resource to use during the midday sun. Especially when you are in a location where natural reflectors are scarce or you need an extra pop of light. Flash is also handy during midday sessions so that you can properly expose for your clients while keeping the background from washing out.

    smiling boy in a field - How to do Portrait Photography in Bright Midday Sun

    Use flash to fill in shadows and compete with the bright sunlight behind.

    Since you’ll be competing with the bright midday sun, point your flash directly at your clients to make sure the light reaches them. Using a diffuser can help to disperse the light. If you’re using your flash in manual mode, aim to use it at 1/8th power or more. This will give you enough power to light your clients.

    couple on the beach - How to do Portrait Photography in Bright Midday Sun

    Experiment with your flash in the high-speed sync mode where you can use shutter speeds higher than 1/200th of a second. You’ll get more fashion styled photos as the pop of light will be more directional and your background will be darker.

    Pointing the flash at a big white wall can also help to bounce light back onto your clients meanwhile diffusing the light so that it isn’t so harsh creating a nice blended fill.

    2 portraits of a man - How to do Portrait Photography in Bright Midday Sun

    Two different portraits created in midday sun during the same session.

    If your flash is attached to your camera, you can slightly bend the flash down to direct it towards your clients rather than having it all the way up. It can add more light to the scene and direct it where you want it to be.

    Shoot in Shade White Balance

    It might seem a little weird to photograph your entire session in the Shade White Balance and your eyes might take some time getting used to the sepia tones. However, photographing people in shade mode helps to keep skin tones even.

    This is very important, especially while photographing during midday sun since it can be really bright and hard to keep the skin tone consistent.

    How to do Portrait Photography in Bright Midday Sun - girl with balloons

    Have fun photographing in the midday sun.

    Shade White Balance allows you to then edit your photos so that you can get the exact skin tones that you desire.

    Let creativity flow

    Photographing during midday sun may not be ideal yet it can offer many different ways for your creativity to flow. Use shadows to create interesting effects. Try to face your client toward the direct sunlight and focus on the details.

    couple with shadows - How to do Portrait Photography in Bright Midday Sun

    Use midday sunlight to create different effects.

    You can also use hats, palm leaves, water, and other interesting elements to create different styled photographs. Experiment with your flash in different positions. Use the sun as a subject within the photo.

    How to do Portrait Photography in Bright Midday Sun

    Use the sun to create repeating patterns and shadows.

    Allow your backgrounds to grow dark or wash out. Use the midday sun to highlight details that you want and put into shadow the details that you want to eliminate. There are many different ideas and letting the sun guide you can often give you the best results!

    Put your clients in the shade

    Just because you have to photograph during the harsh hours of midday sun, it doesn’t mean that you can’t use shaded areas to your benefit!

    You don’t need a much shade, just enough for your clients to fit in. Tall buildings, large tall trees, and tall walls work to help shade your client from harsh light during the middle of the day. Position them close to a big natural reflector, keeping them in the shade while taking advantage of the light being bounced back.

    couple with car - How to do Portrait Photography in Bright Midday Sun

    Put your clients in the shade if you can.

    Make sure you expose for your client’s face and not the background, this will help keep your skin tones even if the background washes out a bit.

    In conclusion

    While photographing in midday sunlight isn’t necessarily ideal, it can always offer some great ways to create different and interesting photographs of your clients. Practicing during these hours is also helpful in case you do have to photograph in midday sun such as a wedding day, for example.

    How to do Portrait Photography in Bright Midday Sun

    Photograph your client in direct sunlight.

    If you find yourself photographing during these peak hours of the day, just know that these tips will help you to get the best out of your session, no matter what the light is like.

    The post How to do Portrait Photography in Bright Midday Sun appeared first on Digital Photography School.


    Source: DP School

  • Review of the SKOUT Handsfree Camera Carrying System by Cotton Carrier

    If you want an alternative to using the regular camera strap for hiking or walking around town type of activities, then this review is just the thing for you! Read on to find out about the SKOUT Handsfree Camera Carrying System and whether it will suit your needs.

    Review of the SKOUT Handsfree Camera Carrying System

    A couple of weeks ago, I had the opportunity to review the SKOUT handsfree camera carrying system by Cotton Carrier during a backcountry camping family trip in Colorado’s Rocky Mountain National Park over a period of five days.

    To say I was impressed with the performance and comfort of the SKOUT would really be an understatement. I was super impressed with the way Cotton Carrier’s handsfree system worked. It actually held up really well over 30 miles of hard terrain for the duration of the entire trip.

    If you have ever been hiking in the mountains, especially the backcountry, you know that total weight and back comfort are very high on the list of priorities for any hiker. I have broken down my review of the Cotton Carrier in terms of the following factors.

    Review of the SKOUT Handsfree Camera Carrying System

    The first day of the hike was without the SKOUT carrier and just using the camera strap around my neck. I was uncomfortable and the strap was so annoying to hold especially after 2-3 hours of a tough incline hike.

    Review of the SKOUT Handsfree Camera Carrying System

    A much happier me with the SKOUT sling on a day hike. Being handsfree was the best part.

    #1 – Ease of use

    The SKOUT design is a one-size fit all solution for almost any camera and lens attachment. I used it with my Canon 5D MKIII and 16-35mm L lens as well as the 24-70mm L lens. The first setup with the 16-35mm lens was definitely lighter than with the 24-70mm lens. But with both lenses, the sling held up really well.

    The side-strap provided the support needed and balanced the weight effectively. Since I was already carrying a heavy camping pack on both my shoulders, the side strap ensured the camera was well balanced on my back. I was really impressed with the SKOUT’s patented “Twist & Lock” mount that attaches and detaches the camera from the anodized aluminum hub with a simple twist.

    I have to admit I was a little nervous the first few minutes after attaching the camera to the SKOUT, being completely handsfree. But my body and my back quickly adjusted to the freedom and I loved not having to constantly pull up the camera strap from my shoulders while walking and hiking in the rough terrain.

    Hidden inside the system is an internal stash pocket that fits a phone or a few credit cards. There’s also a rain cover/ weather guard so the gear stays safe and dry in less than ideal environments. I actually ended up using this a couple of times during my hike when we got caught is a mild downpour in the moutnains.

    #2 Comfort

    Attaching the SKOUT was fairly simple. After wrapping it over one shoulder, there is a single strap that wraps around the torso and snaps into place on the front, securing the entire system. The shoulder strap is really padded well, so even heavier camera systems don’t put too much stress on the body.

    Review of the SKOUT Handsfree Camera Carrying System

    The bracket attaches right where you would attach your tripod insert.

    Review of the SKOUT Handsfree Camera Carrying System

    The bracket then connects to the sling body with a twist and turn and it is quite secure.

    Review of the SKOUT Handsfree Camera Carrying System

    The crossbody sling with the camera attached to it along with the rain cover.

    The cotton fabric is very breathable. I was hiking for almost 5-6 hours every day on some pretty rough terrain. Yet the shoulder and body straps were soft and did not rub against my back. The padding on the shoulder straps is thick and really does support the camera weight across your shoulder nicely.

    #3 Durability

    Like I mentioned earlier, I used the SKOUT camera sling system over a span of 10 days in the mountains of Colorado. I used it on backcountry hiking days as well as day hikes in Rocky Mountain National Park.

    After the first few minutes of figuring out how to attach the camera and secure the system in place, I really forgot it was even on my body. I absolutely enjoyed being handsfree and having the camera readily available to snap a photo when I saw a beautiful landscape or wildlife.

    No more taking the camera out of the daypack and risking missing the moment. The straps, the clasp, and even the camera attachment held up really well to some rough use during my trip.

    Here is a video of the SKOUT handsfree camera system in use during my trip.

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    Conclusion

    All in all, I would definitely rate this product a 9/10 and highly recommend it for anyone looking to do photography on a trail or during a backcountry hiking/camping trip.

    It is easy to use, comfortable to wear for extended periods of time and seems reliable even after some rough use in the outdoors.

    The post Review of the SKOUT Handsfree Camera Carrying System by Cotton Carrier appeared first on Digital Photography School.


    Source: DP School

  • Make a DIY low-angle quadpod under $20

    I love low angle photography! It brings fresh and unusual angles that makes your pictures  stand out. You can buy Platypod for this purpose but I didn’t want to spend $100 on a chunky piece of metal. This site have many  suggestions for do-it-yourself low angle stands including a frying pan.  Good luck taking it […]

    The post Make a DIY low-angle quadpod under $20 appeared first on DIY Photography.


    Source: Diyphotographynet

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