Mermaid Parade 2011 Photo Workshop

Well a fun day was had by all.  Great to be outside all day long on a glorious day, doing what I love to do most.


Tip for the day day is on aperture. What aperture should you use for portraiture?  For a head shot of a single person I generally like to open up to a wide f/stop to blur out my background. That’s my preference because I like the look of it and find it particularly attractive and it makes for a stronger photograph. When used on women (who we have to be more careful with) it softens the face and complexion leaving the most important feature sharp which is the eyes. However, there are exceptions especially when you are shooting in crowds and where there are lots of people and different things happening such as at the Mermaid Parade, where I just did a workshop. In a situation like this, where you want to be flexible and spontaneous, you might want to choose to use a medium depth-of-field for a little more depth of field. When a situation arises and you have a little more time to to make a change and want to throw more of your background out-of-focus and again to get a stronger photo, open up your aperture, that is, providing you have the light. Again, in the studio I like to choose a shallow depth of field especially for women.  Studio lights can show imperfections and reveal too much. If the person is young and their complexion is good,  you have choices, but the older we get the more lines and imperfections we get on our faces and the more we notice them.  So, the photographer should be aware of this. When photographing more than one person you need a medium aperture to make sure your subjects are in focus. For children, more times then not because they can’t hold still sometimes a choice of  a medium to small aperture is better.
 
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Pet Peeve #1 Does Your Work Really Belong In A Gallery?

















© JoAnne Kalish

I’ve spent years working to develop a style of my own. Many upcoming photographers think that after a short amount of time acquiring a few skills their work is good enough to be should be shown in a gallery. A lot of amateur photographers pay to be shown in a gallery. Does your work really belong in a gallery just yet? Is there a theme to your work? A personal style? Or is it another picture of an old barn, a seagull or photos from your last vacation all framed up so nice, where you spend hundreds on matting and framing – the presentation may be professional but is it really art? Think about it. It brings the art of photography down – there’s more to it then you think. Develop a style, hone your craft really work on it. Keep striving to make photographs rather than pictures have them say something about you, what do you care about? What do you most like to photograph? Nature? People, Portraiture? Sports? Fashion? Still Life? I can go on but won’t. If you can’t make up your mind try keeping your work in categories – all  portraiture together, all sports etc. See what you’re best at and go with your strongest suit possibly. Develop and round out the category. What’s it missing to make it better? When putting your best photos together remember this rule – “When in Doubt Leave it Out.” What photos are weak and should be replaced to make a stronger statement?