Photo Tip: Focus

by Sonya Murphy on March 9, 2010

In photography the photographer looks for the subject material or main part of the photograph, and then tries to capture it by focusing on it.  There are several methods in which to bring focus on that subject within the photograph.  It could be by the various settings on the camera, the use of the physical surrounding, the knowledge of photography skills combined, etc.

So my challenge to you is to “Focus” on a subject this week?  Try to capture this subject in all sorts of various conditions and then compare the photographs and see which method helped to bring the best attention to the subject you focused on.  Like I mentioned there are many techniques to use to bring that “focus” into the subject in the photograph.  Experiment and try it out.  It’s one of the best tools for learning.

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Sometimes a photograph might be dark because of the shadows and highlights.  For these types of pictures, using the other tips in lightening a picture just don’t work.  Yet this little trick might be just the thing to fix that picture.

As I’ve mentioned before, there is usually more than one way to work at a solution.  Then again, there may be no hope for some pictures.  So, before giving up be sure to experiment with each technique to see which one would give you the best results.  I might even, on occasion, combine several of these methods.  Of course, the best thing to do is take the picture correctly in the first place.

Just be sure to work on a copy or a duplicate.  Again, I use Photoshop CS2.

First:  Go to the top menu bar and select “Image”,  and from the drop down menu select “adjustments”.  Then, from that side menu select “Shadow/Highlight”.

Second:  A pop up window will bring up the next set of selections.  I mostly deal with the top part where it says, “Shadows”.  It automatically adjusts it to 50% on the Amount.  This is the one I am usually mostly interested in.  I find that 50% is too much and makes the photograph look odd.   I normally slide the % down in the neighborhood of 15-35%.  Each photograph may require a bit different amounts.  So play around with it until you get it looking about right.

Have fun experimenting and testing the methods I’ve talked about so far.

This is another quick way to lighten up those dark photographs.  It’s a fairly simple and easy trick to use.  Just remember that you always want to strive for the best picture you can while taking the picture.  There are a number or reasons for that.  The best reason is, it lessens your time on fixing photographs, so you can do more layouts.

NOTE:  If you have a photo tip that you’d like to share please contact me.   In fact, if you have any sort of story (funny, serious, etc) to share on how you captured a picture and what the results were, we’d like to hear about it.  These write-ups need to be written up in your own words and not copied from someone else (copyright issues).

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I don’t know about you, but there are times when an important picture turned out too dark.  So what does one do to help lighten the photograph?

Last week, I explained one way that you might go in and try to lighten up a picture.  This week, I will give you another method to try.  Just keep in mind that if one method doesn’t work, another might.   Believe it or not, there are yet still other methods to try.  Sometimes I experiment around with each to see which one would give me the best results.  I might even, on occasion, combine several of these methods.

The best thing to do is experiment with each photograph.  Just be sure to work on a copy or a duplicate.

Again, I use Photoshop CS2, so these instructions will be how to lighten a photograph in CS2.

First:  Go to the top menu bar and select “Image”,  and from the drop down menu select “adjustments”.  Then, from that side menu select “Hue/Saturation”.  Or you can use the shortcut by hitting a “Ctrl U” on the PC.  It will bring up a little menu box.

Second:  Now  go down to where it says “lightness”.  Slide the little button bar over to the right of the screen, till you get the lightness you are looking for.  You have to be careful on the amount of lightness you use, because too much will make the photograph look odd.

Third:   When you achieve the look you’re after, then go to the right and select “ok” to close the pop up menu.

Have fun experimenting and testing the methods I’ve talked about so far.

This is a quick way to lighten up those dark photographs.  It’s a fairly simple and easy trick to use.  Just remember that you always want to strive for the best picture you can while taking the picture.  There are a number or reasons for that.  The best reason is, it lessens your time on fixing photographs, so you can do more layouts.

NOTE:  If you have a photo tip that you’d like to share then contact me.  In fact, if you have any sort of story (funny, serious, etc) to share on how you captured a picture and what the results were, we’d like to hear about it.  These write-ups need to be written up in your own words and not copied from someone else (copyright issues).

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I don’t know about you, but there are times when an important picture turned out too dark.  So what does one do to help lighten the photograph?

Actually, there are several different things you can try.  But I’m going to keep this simple by listing one method here.  Just keep in mind that if one method doesn’t work, another might.

I use Photoshop CS2 so these instructions will be how to lighten a photograph in CS2.

First:  Make a duplicate of the original picture.  To do this; go to the top menu bar, find the word “image”, and click for the drop down menu.  Then select “Duplicate”.   It will pop up a screen with a suggested name for the duplicate.  It’s usually the original name with copy added at the end.  You can change it, or leave it, and then click “OK”.  Close the original image.

Second:  Now working on the copy of the original photograph.  Duplicate the layer by using “Ctrl j”; this way you can always go back to the original before any changes were made.

Third:   Make another copy of the layer by doing a “Ctrl j”.  Then, in the lower right screen on the Layers palette, click on the little down arrow to pop up another menu.  Select “Screen”.  You will notice that this lightens the picture up.

If it’s not enough, then hit “Ctrl j” again and see if this helps.  On rare occasions you may have to do this several times so as to lighten the picture up.  Let’s say on the last one, it’s too light and yet if you delete that layer it’s not quite light enough.  Then use the opacity slider and lower the percentage number to where you feel you have the photograph about where you’d like.

This is a quick way to lighten up those dark photographs.  It’s a fairly simple and easy trick to use.  Just remember that you always want to strive for the best picture you can while taking the picture.  There are a number or reasons for that.  The best reason is it lessens your time on fixing photographs, so you can do more layouts.

NOTE:  If you have a photo tip that you’d like to share then contact me.  In fact, if you have any sort of story (funny, serious, etc) to share on how you captured a picture and what the results were we’d like to hear about it.  These write-ups need to be written up in your own words and not copied from someone else (copyright issues).

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Happy Valentines Day

by admin on February 15, 2010

Isn’t it a great day to enjoy!  Hopefully someone special made it a wonderful day for you.  Better yet, did you make it a special day for someone you really care about!  Then, just maybe you have some pictures of that day that you would like to scrap into a layout of some sort.  So here is a freebie that I’m giving away to help you do that.  It is a png file so you can convert your pictures to a fancy 5×5 square to include on any layout you choose.

Here is the a sample of that png file:

LoveOverlayTemplate_5x5_500

Here is a picture I used using this template and how it turned out:

LoveOverlayTemplate_5x5_I3_4400_12302009_500

Then this is the scrapbook page I created using this template:

RyanBriLoveLO_12x12_c_500

Click here to get your freebie

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Photo Tip: Taking Aim

by Sonya Murphy on December 29, 2009

Have you ever wondered how to place your camera to get the best formal shots of a person?  Today I’m going to give a simple little tip that can really boost the quality of those formal pictures.

Lets say you want to take head and shoulder shot for a formal picture.  The key to this type of portrait is to keep the camera at the person’s eye level or slightly above.  This will give you a more flattering look for the person and can help minimize any distortions.

Ok, now you want to take a picture of most of the person but not the full length shot.  Then the guide to this is to aim the camera at the person’s chest level.  Again you want the camera pointed straight and directly at the chest level.  Be sure to not have that lens tilted up or down even slightly or you’ll get more of a distorted look of the person’s body.

Now you want to capture a formal full length portrait of an individual.  What you need to do is position your camera at that person’s waist level.  Again, be sure to keep the lens pointed straight at the person’s waist, making sure that the lens isn’t angled up or down or you’ll get a more distorted look.  Of course, you’ll have to bend over or lower yourself so as to look into the camera view finder to take the picture.  Yet, the results will be more flattering to the person you’re taking the picture of.

These are guidelines for more flattering formal pictures, but once you’ve practiced this, then experiment using the camera at other positions.  Study the results to see what it does to the person.  The position & level of the camera can make a person look thinner, wider, emphasize a large nose or bring attention to beautiful eyes.   This can open up a whole new subject on taking flattering pictures of people, which I won’t go into here.

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Monday Madness

by admin on December 28, 2009

Here is another QP for you to enjoy!  This quick page is another one created by Helen.  She is a CT for “Designs by Marcie”.  She used Marcie’s kit called, “Little Elf“.

Click here for today’s FREEBIE

LittleElf_MAS_QPHelen2_500

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Freebie Surprise

by admin on December 27, 2009

Jan of Dusty D has created this fun little FREEBIE for you to enjoy.  Here is what she has to say, “Here’s a little freebie for you to use on your Christmas pages. It’s a 12inch 300dpi word art overlay that you can use as a border or as an embossed overlay on your favorite Christmas papers.”

Click here for the FREEBIE

DD-SS-XmasWords-preview

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BIG Day After Christmas Sale

by admin on December 26, 2009

here at SumScrapper.  Everything in the shoppe is 50% off.  Here is your chance to purchase those items you’ve been saving up for.  Don’t miss out for it lasts for only 24 hours.  Hop on in to the Sumscrapper Shoppe while the Elves are out playing.

2hzsc37

We are also giving out this beautiful bow for you to enjoy.  This one is provided by Ellie of “Designed by Ellie”.

Click here for the FREEBIE

DBE_VC_Bow-Freebie_preview

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Friday Freebie

by admin on December 25, 2009

MERRY CHRISTMAS to all our wonderful Friends of SumScrapper!  May this day be one that you cherish.

This is our gift to you!  It is a beautiful QP made by Helen.  She is a CT for, “Designs by Marcie”.  She used the kit called, “Little Elf”.  It’s such a cute kit that you can purchase it here so that you can make other cute pages to match this QP.

Click here to download your QP FREEBIE

LittleElf_MAS_QPHelen_500

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