Category Archives: Photography

Mosaics on Monday

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I’m finishing up all the mosaics started last week.  This one is awaiting pickup from the customer—yes, another special order!  The small dark colored bits are mirror…silver mirror, which really add some sparkle but don’t show up in this photo. 

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I’m completing several photo frames, and was looking in my desk drawers for interesting paper to place in the photo area.  But while in Barnes and Noble, I found a lovely book in the clearance section:  Birds in Love!  Its pages are filled with beautiful photography.  So, for $2 I have many many cool photos to fill the frames:

IMG_0637This frame uses white iridized tiles, and mirror tiles, which  seem to be a favorite lately.  Can you see my reflection on the inner border?  

And I have another photography tip.   Mosaics and the cameras flash don’t mix well….blinding reflections and highlights, yikes!  Using white paper, or cardstock, angle it in front of  the flash….to deflect the light.  Put on your sunglasses before looking at the photo taken without the white paper deflector:

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Have a good Monday….

Photography Lesson

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If I try to teach you, maybe I will learn something myself! 

Setting up my flower brooches for photography is an ever changing experiment.  Just from practice and experimentation, I feel the photos have gotten more interesting…..I really like “styling” these setups, and enjoy hunting through the house looking for props.   Everyday objects, like this beautiful milk glass dish, and my weathered wood bench were what appealed to me for this photo shoot:

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I’ll keep playing around, hopefully my composition and camera skills will develop with both taking these “ flower portraits” and photography, in general,  beyond the automatic settings.  Jeff has given me a few hints  for taking still photos.   To take a good photograph, you need good light.  Here are a few ways to optimize use of  light :

1.  ISO is a reference to films sensitivity to light, even though this is digital camera, remember we used to buy film with ISO choices…100, 200, 400?  Set ISO to a lower number,  this will give the best picture quality.  An ISO of 100 to 200 is good.  As the number increases, the image will get grainer.   At higher ISOs the camera will find more usable light in darker settings, but your picture quality will suffer.  

2.  Decide on your Fstop (aperture), your depth of field choice.  Which means you want everything in focus, or you want a focal point with everything else in front and back of the point to be out of focus (blurred).  The lower the fstop number the less depth of field.  For something with depth,  set your fstop high, like F13 or above.  The higher the number, the better  depth of field, but more light is needed for proper exposure.

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This is a good illustration of  a need for a higher Fstop….the right edge of this button is in focus, but everything else is not. 

3.  Lighting….the slower the shutter speed, the more light is allowed in .  But if the speed is under 1/50th of a second your hand will not be steady enough…you need a tripod.    So its best to have lots of natural light available, or use artificial light. 

There are settings on most manual controlled digital cameras that set one of these 3 elements as a given, and automatically adjust the others for proper exposure.  For example, my camera has a AV setting that you choose the “aperture value” and it sets the other two to work with that. 

There, I have recorded these fundamentals, in a way that I can understand them, and maybe you will find this helpful too.   

Of course, any further thoughts, discussion and tips would be appreciated!