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Nikonians Articles

Resources to save time and money, reduce the pain and speed up the learning curve.

Sigma 17-50mm F2.8 EX DC OS HSM Review
Lens Reviews

Sigma 17-50mm F2.8 EX DC OS HSM Review

User

Josh Larkin has a whimsical way of making his reviews on products and experiences as a whole. Read his review of the Sigma 17-50mm F2.8 EX DC OS HSM lens (from herein referred to as Sigma 17-50mm) and you will find yourself able to relate, learn, and be inspired through his process. With detailed examples, and sample shots, you’ll have the picture painted – clearly. Read more...

Vision Quest Cards
Travel Stories

Vision Quest Cards

User

A few Sundays ago, both mother nature and I were under the weather. It had been raining straight for weeks. Autumn had reared the ugly side of its head and brought cold temps. All the leaves had dropped, ushering in what we in Vermont refer to as "stick season," when all of the hills are drab brown. Needless to say, I was having a tough time finding anything I felt excited about shooting. Read more...

Personal Projects
How-to's

Personal Projects

User

Doesn't matter if you've just began with photography, or if you are more serious, defining a project in your mind before even picking up the camera will help you focus on what to shoot. In this article, Josh Larkin talks about how to choose and plan your own personal project and even lists five of the most common project themes. Read more...

Self Portraits
How-to's

Self Portraits

User

For years I've had a standard response to the question "Can I take your photo." It's essentially, "Nope, I'm a photographer so I like to stay on the side of the lens that I like better!" And while I do still try my best to stay out of other people's photographs, I've recently come to appreciate the self portrait. The thing of it is, making self portraits is a great exercise in creativity that offers us, as photographers, lots of learning opportunities. Read more...

Street Portraits - How to Approach & Photograph Strangers
How-to's

Street Portraits - How to Approach & Photograph Strangers

User

First off, I'm not blessed with some high-degree of confidence that allows me to walk up to anybody, anytime, anywhere and ask them if I can take their picture. Chances are, neither are you. But it hasn't stopped me from taking some wonderful street portraits, and it shouldn't stop you either. Read more...

Tips for Shooting Live Music
How-to's

Tips for Shooting Live Music

User

There are a couple of standard rules of engagement that you should follow when shooting musicians. How to get good shots even without flash? Which lens to choose? What settings to use? Josh Larkin answers all these questions. Read more...

Traveling Tips - Washington, USA
How-to's Travel Stories

Traveling Tips - Washington, USA

User

First off, I'm not a travel photographer. I don't have the resources to travel to exotic places for extended periods of time just to make photos. Second off, when I do wind up visiting some place new, it's typically for a visit with family or a non-photography, work-related event. Either way, time is often limited when I travel. That was the case last week when my wife and I flew 2,699 miles across the U.S. to Washington to visit with family. Read more...

Shooting at Twilight
How-to's

Shooting at Twilight

User

Your eyes can still see perfectly, but your camera can't keep up with you. Shooting at twilight can be challenging, but if done properly, you will be rewarded with beautiful sky colors in the background. How to work with lighting to get the right exposure for your photographs? Read more...

Balancing Ambient Light with Flash
How-to's

Balancing Ambient Light with Flash

User

I've got an understanding of apparent light size. I know what happens when I change the distance between my light source, my subject and my background. And I've moved through diffuse and direct reflections. Now it's time to get into some of the practical aspects of flash photography, and there's no place better to start than balancing ambient light with flash. Read more...

Specular Highlight Control
How-to's

Specular Highlight Control

User

In my last post I started looking more closely at diffuse and direct reflections and how both reveal the form and surface texture of a subject in a photograph. Through my exercises, I was able to exert better control over the placement and look of direct reflections, or specular highlights, and now I want to apply that knowledge to a subject where this has a dramatic impact on the end result: metal. Read more...

Get To Know Your Gear
How-to's

Get To Know Your Gear

User

Josh Larkin says: "We all know that telling a photographer that their camera takes really good pictures is like telling a great baker that their oven makes amazing cakes." Newer camera models might make it somehow easier to take good photos, but it is still about your will to learn the equipment to find its strengths and weaknesses. Read more...

Better Black and White Images in Lightroom
How-to's Software Reviews

Better Black and White Images in Lightroom

User

A guide to producing better black and white images in Lightroom. If you're going black and white with any photograph, the end result can be made stronger by doing things yourself and not just letting your software decide how to create the tones and contrast that ultimately make for a powerful black and white image. Read more...

Reflections
How-to's

Reflections

User

In my quest to better my own lighting techniques by going back and working through lessons in various books and on websites, I've looked at apparent light size and the inverse square law. Both of these topics and exercises gave me a better handle on the three aspects of light as it relates to a subject: the lit portion, the shadow portion and the transition areas that fall in between. Read more...

Control Over Your Lights With Distance
How-to's

Control Over Your Lights With Distance

User

In my article on Apparent Light Size, we saw the differences in light produced by large and small light sources. I demonstrated this by starting with a flash in a small softbox set up very close to a small object, therefore making a large light source. I then moved the light farther and farther away, thereby simulating a smaller light source. Read more...

Apparently, size does matter...
How-to's

Apparently, size does matter...

User

Despite what you may have heard, size matters. Of course, I'm talking about the size of your light source here, which is what you were thinking, right? Portrait photographers often use large modifiers -- think 50" softboxes, 43" umbrellas, etc. -- to soften the light hitting the subject. And that's what we want most of the time (film noir shooters excluded), nice soft light that transitions slowly from highlights to shadows. Read more...

Get Your Flash off Camera for Better Photos
How-to's

Get Your Flash off Camera for Better Photos

User

If you've had your photo taken for your driver's license recently, or a mug shot, you've probably noticed the result wasn't the most flattering image you've seen of yourself. Why is that? Read more...

Learning to Light (Series 1 of 6)
How-to's

Learning to Light (Series 1 of 6)

User

My first experiences with flash photography involved the on-board flash, me fumbling around with camera settings, and a subject that wound up looking like he, she or it had been nuked. I quickly learned that the pop-up flash is really only good for a few things: mug shots and drivers licenses. Read more...

Making Hay When the Sun Doesn't Shine
How-to's

Making Hay When the Sun Doesn't Shine

User

"Too bad it's such a bad day for taking pictures." I'd just gotten my tripod set up and the camera locked in when she rode by on her bicycle. "Well, I suppose that depends on what you're taking pictures of," I replied. Read more...

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