First comes love . . .

I'll be the first to admit that one of my weaknesses as a photographer is taking pictures of people. There are so many variables that are difficult to control when a person is the subject of a photograph. Lighting, pose, background, depth of field, etc. etc. etc. Consequently, I have not had much experience taking pictures of people, as most of my best images are more along the lines of "still life." Still, when a friend of mine was planning to propose to his girlfriend, he asked me to take pictures of the event. Considering that he introduced me to my wife many years ago, I figured I owed him and agreed. Because I don't regularly take pictures of proposals, there were some lessons I learned during the experience. If you're thinking about delving into the world of proposal photography, here are a few things you might want to consider: 1. Location, location, location Usually, the photographer does not get to pick the location...
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The Great American Eclipse

The Great American Eclipse

Back in 2010, I was curious when the next total solar eclipse in the United States would happen. After looking it up on Wolfram Alpha, I learned that it would take place in seven years. I also found that the path of totality would pass near where I lived at the time. At that point, I decided that I would go out to see the total solar eclipse when the time came. Fast forward to 2017, and I had moved from Alabama back to Colorado, so my totality viewing location had moved from Tennessee to Wyoming. I think I always intended to photograph the total solar eclipse, but as the day approached, I realized I had little knowledge on how to shoot it. While the glow typically looks white, a "temperature shift" in editing can create a picture like this. From my photography of the moon, I knew I would need my tripod and remote, as well as a lens large enough to fill...
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Nature up Close

When you think of nature, what's the most impressive thing that strikes you about it? Is it the grandeur of the landscapes? Is it the minutia of the small components that make up the world? For me, it's definitely the scale of nature that always strikes me as majestic. I can climb a mountain that towers above the plains; but even on the peak of this mountain, I can find the tiniest flowers. In focusing on the small elements of nature, I've found some fascinating photographs. While climbing Mount Bierstadt, I came across this grass covered in frost. Even before I had my DSLR camera, I found a setting on my point-and-shoot digital camera that could be used for macro photography. Being able to get close to something and capture it in a picture felt like I had the world under a microscope, even if the capabilities of the camera were limited. Ice is fascinating to photograph, especially with the right lighting. One of the...
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Shoot the Moon

A few months ago, I discussed some of the techniques for taking pictures at night. Now that we’re finally into fall and the nights are getting longer, I thought I would focus on some specific techniques to take pictures of the Moon. Unlike “painting with light”, photographing the Moon has different challenges. Sure, you’ll still want a tripod and remote, and your ISO should be relatively low, but if you really want your Moon shots to pop, there are a few more things you should probably know. The first key difference between taking pictures of the Moon and painting with light is the shutter speed. While you’ll want a long exposure to capture the full extent of your light streaks with the latter, a shorter exposure time will help define the features of the Moon. Instead of appearing as a bright white circle in the sky, you’ll be able to capture the craters and plains of the Moon. You will still...
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