A lot of people have asked me how I go about getting my clients to pose naturally. The answer is really simple. Be confident, fun, interactive, and playful. Avoid awkward poses, and run with anything and everything that happens. There isn't all that much more to it. If it's a new type of photo shoot and you're nervous about how to pose your clients, do a bit of research and do your best to replicate photos that you like. Get your clients in a simple pose, and then start to joke and coach and play. This will help make your photos look so much better, rather than stiff, rigid and awful.
Cropping has to be one of the most debated aspects of photography. On one side of the spectrum we have people who crop photos, and see no harm in doing so. On the other side we have people who think cropping an image is something you just don't do. I'm one of the believers that as long as you're not relying on cropping, there is no real harm in it.
There are a few reasons why you may want to crop a photo. Maybe you took a fantastic photo, but you accidentally got your horizon on a slight angle and didn't notice until you were in post. Maybe the composition is slightly off, but the photo is really good. Perhaps a quick crop would take it from a nice photo to absolutely stunning. Another good reason is you love the composition, but there is something distracting in the shot. (Although it can be argued that you could / should have zoomed in or compose the shot slightly differently not to show the distraction. I have to agree with that argument.)
Like everything else in photography, you need to strive to get it right in the camera. If you start to rely on cropping to get your photos right, you're never going to get better at being a photographer. Cropping shouldn't be a crutch - it should be a tool in the tool box that only gets used when needed. Unless, of course, you plan on taking a photo and intentionally doing a stylistic creative crop. In that case, crop away.
I've provided an example of a photo that I recently took. I absolutely loved the shot, but decided to crop. I didn't like the original composition, and I feel the photo benefited from being cropped in slightly. I like delivering high quality product to my clients, and if cropping the image every once in a while is what it takes, so be it.
My opinion stands that in a perfect world you shouldn't have to crop your photos, but realistically it is not the end of the world if you do. Be cautious of over cropping, because if your clients want a massive print they might not be happy that they image quality is poor because you relied on cropping. Always strive to capture the photo properly, and only crop of you absolutely need to.
I'm launching a new segment of videos called "Your Photos Exposed" where I go over, and critique your photos! All you need to do is upload 5 of your best photos to a website like 500px, or Flickr, and send me the link through one of the submission pages on the site. I will be randomly picking submissions for critiquing so if you're not picked right away, keep submitting and hopefully you'll get yours chosen!
NOTE: Do not send me links to your Instagram page, I will not be critiquing photos on Instagram.
This is a great opportunity for you to get an honest perspective on your photos. I will give you advice on what you're doing right, and what I think you might be able to improve upon.
Let me start by saying I really wanted to love the d7500, I really did. Now that's not to say that I HATE it, but upon looking at the specs I have to say it really left me wanting more. After a little while of complaining it dawned on me what the d7500 is meant to be, and it made me appreciate it a little more than I did at first. I'll explain in a moment but let's start with some specs.
- 4K capability
- The same great sensor as the d500
- Movable touch screen
- 51 focus points
Now let's talk about some of the negatives
- One memory card slot
- $1250 USD price point
Wait...is that it, is that all I see that bothers me about the d7500? I guess it is. So why was I upset? I was upset because it feels like a half assed step up from the d7200. The d7200 has a good sensor, dual memory card slots, 6fps, full HD (no 4K), 51 focus points. Over all, it has very similar specs to the new Nikon d7500.
But realistically what did we expect? When it comes to the 7000 series, every new model has sort of been a baby step from the last. Nikon likes come out with a killer brand new camera (something like the d500) and then take the sensor, and few other aspects, and toss it into a 7000 series camera. Which honestly makes perfect sense. It's not supposed to be a ground breaking camera, it's just meant to be a more cost effective version of the ground breaking camera. If they didn't come out with this d7500, the line up would start to be stale and outdated.
Now I know what you're thinking. And yes I absolutely agree. The one thing that really bothers me is the fact that they did away with the dual memory card slot, I can't wrap my head around that decision but they must have their reasons, or else they wouldn't have done it...right?
All in all if you're looking for a revolutionary, ground breaking, camera the Nikon d7500 isn't it. But, If you're looking for a good mid-high end camera, that shoots 4k, and will handle well at higher ISO's, this isn't a bad option at all. Just be weary of not having the back up memory card slot. I say If you really want to upgrade and can justify the cost difference, the d500 is still certainly the way to go.
I've been asked this question a lot from people who are just starting out. I'm going to give you the most simple explanation of an f-stop that I can think of.
No matter what lens you have, it has an opening that can be made wider, or narrower. This opening is called your lenses f-stop (or aperture). It is designed to let a certain amount of light in to your camera. The lower the f-stop that your lens can go, the wider the opening will be, which allows more light in to your cameras sensor. These numbers often go as low as f/1.4, f/1.8, or f/2.8 which is great for shooting in low light situations. By being able to utilize these lower f-stops you can achieve faster shutter speeds, and not have to rely on boosting your cameras ISO (sensor sensitivity).
Now, In conjunction with letting light in to the camera the opening also plays another huge role. It creates depth of field. Depth of field is essentially the area that is in focus. The lower the f-stop, the shallower the depth of field, which means less of the image is in focus (from front to back) which really helps to separate your subject from the background. Here is an example. If you are taking a close head shot using an 85mm f/1.8 lens and focus on your subjects eye, the background will melt away almost instantly. The eye will be in focus, but everything from the ears and beyond will become blurry - very cool.
NOTE: Be very careful if you are shooting at lower f-stops. Because the depth of field is so shallow, the slightest movement can cause your photo to be out of focus. Try not to focus and recompose, but rather get your focus point where it needs to be and try locking in your focus a few times to make sure you've got the shot.
The higher you set your f-stop (something like f/8, f/11, f/16) the more of the image will be in focus. This is great when you are taking landscape photography, group photos, or using flash in a studio.
There is a lot that goes in to using your f-stop properly, and takes some practice, but knowing what it is, and how it works is half the battle.
The f-stop is your lenses aperture. The lower the number, the more light is let in to your camera. With a lower number, you can also get a really blurry background.