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Safari with my Nikon D800

I've been an avid traveler for many years. Had visited 20 plus countries in all continents, including Egypt in Africa, before this summer I knew my next destination would be going deeper into Africa, and I made that happen with my first safari trip to Tanzania. It's a fantastic experience I will never forget, and if possible I would like to go back again. I took many pictures of wild animals with my new Nikon D800 that comes with a 36-million-pixel sensor, the highest among all digital cameras up to full frame in sizes.

Live Streaming and Trends in Videography?

My brand of videography involves taking videos and producing DVDs. Now as high defhas become the norm, DVDs which are not high-def will soon go out offavor and people will demand Blu-ray Disks (BDs) instead of DVDs. High def videos have from 2.7 to about 6 time the resolution of standard resolution videos, and a standard BD can contain over 5 times the information of what's on a standard DVD. High def videos on BD will soon become the norm. Some might argue it's already the norm. We started offering BD to some of our customers last year.

Videography Is Fun! [+ FAQ]

We started offering videography service at the beginning of the year and it has been so well received that during the second quarter of this year I have more video jobs than photo jobs already. Not because my photography business is going down or something, as it actually has more than quadrupled from the same period of last year. In a 4-day span from last night to the coming Sunday, we will complete 5 video jobs that include a total of 10 shows. Since videography turns out to be something really fun, this is not a bad development for me:-)  I enjoy watching free performances.

How to choose a good videographer

In choosing a photographer, you would look at his/her works first. Same with choosing a videographer: look at his/her works first. Now, the question is: how to tell if the video is of good quality or not? As any form of art, subjectivity is a given, so you hire a videographer only if you like his/her works. So what's left for me to tell you are the things to pay attention to so that you don't accidentally hire a lousy videographer. I am only going to focus on a couple of very simple things here:

360° Panoramic Photography

We are starting to offer 360°panoramic photography for interior architectural shots.
This is only a temporary image and will be updated soon. Click on the image to start your virtual tour; use the mouse to navigate the view.


Overpowering the Sun [pics]

Taking good outdoor portrait pictures could be really easy or really hard depends on the natural lighting conditions and what we are trying to achieve. When we are lucky enough, the free lighting from the sun is all we need to take good pictures, but more often we are not as lucky, especially from a professional photographer's point of view. Besides other reasons, professionals can't afford to plan our jobs based on best case scenarios. Direct sunlight can cast too harsh a shadow on people's faces, can force people to squint their eyes, and if it's the only light source, can seriously limit people's choices of positioning.

Paint Photo with Light at Misty Mountain [pics]

Photography is sometimes described figuratively as "painting with light". An interesting question is: Can we really paint a photo with strokes of light as we do with paint brushes in oil painting? The answer is definitely YES.

I went for a camping trip during the weekend at Misty Mountain in northern Georgia. I asked a few kids to paint "MISTY" with flashlights and here are two examples:









































How did I do that? Well, the following is a picture shot at the same spot with a slightly different technique.

How To Take Night Portraits [pics]

When taking portrait shots during the night, try not to use the auto mode on the camera. Otherwise it's likely the picture won't be very interesting. The reason is simple, the camera will engage the flash to make sure the focused person is lit properly, often over doing it, and in doing so many interesting background objects are washed out. Look at this photo:




















Atlanta skyscrapers are in the background but you can barely see them. They are too dim and too blurred. Taking control of the exposure by lowering the shutter speed, combined with a smaller aperture to bring the background into focus, and higher ISO number to ensure enough light, I got this much more interesting picture:

Challenges of Architectural Photography (1) - Dynamic Range [pics]

When taking interior architectural shots involving external windows, one of the main challenges is to avoid overblown window views. Since interior lighting is often much weaker than external lighting during the day, when the camera is set on a proper exposure for the interior, the exterior becomes too bright, as shown in the following picture:















Now if we try to address this problem by reducing the exposure, the interior can easily become too dark. The lighting range between maximum darkness and maximum brightness that a camera can capture is called its Dynamic Range.

Low Light Photography & Nikon D3s [pics]

Q: How do you shoot in how light?
A: Increase the aperture (lower the F number if not listed in fractions)
Q: What if that's not enough?
A: Well, lower the shutter speed, increase ISO, and if necessary, put the camera on a tripod.
Q: What if the object is moving quickly? Tripod is not going to help.
A: Then use a flash or flashes.
Q: What if no flashes are allowed?
A: Well...remember the panning technique I talked about a couple of days ago?
Q: What if the objects do not move in a strait line, but instead in many different directions and speeds?
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Recent Posts

Safari with my Nikon D800
Live Streaming and Trends in Videography?
Videography Is Fun! [+ FAQ]
How to choose a good videographer
360° Panoramic Photography

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