The weekly newsletter on the art of photography from
Monday, August 13, 2007
Featured Gallery
Welcome Note
This Week's Tip
Updates From BetterPhoto
Q&A 1: Exposure Settings...
Q&A 2: The Lens Hood: Wh...
Q&A 3: Printing from Dis...
Q&A 4: When Shooting, Sh...
Q&A 5: How to Mount Digi...

"Wow. This course was fabulous! I was looking for a challenge and found it... Richard's vast expertise, his infinite patience and his sharp intelligence make him a great teacher... Thanks, Richard!" -student in Richard Lynch's Photoshop 101: The Photoshop Essentials Primer course

At BetterPhoto, we have an outstanding line of online photo courses that focus on the fundamentals. Learn more...

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Background Layer Editing: Opacity and Fill ... by Al Wardl
Opacity and Fill adjustments in Photoshop cannot be performed on the background layer. To make these adjustments available for a single layer image, the background layer must first be turned into a standard layer. Double-click the Background Layer in the Layers palette, give it a new name (Photoshop will assign a generic one) and click OK to change it to a standard layer. The Opacity and Fill sliders will now be available.
Editor's Note: Check out Al Ward's excellent online course: Right-Brain Photoshop: Merging, Melding and Morphing

Featured Gallery
Where's the Hotel!??
© - Patrick R. McMullen

Welcome to the 329th issue of SnapShot!

So much good news this August! First off, if you are still kicking yourself for not signing up for an online photo class, then check out the September school schedule ... Second, the BetterPhoto Summit is just around the corner - ilate September in Chicago - but there's still time to take part in the Summit Contest. Sign up today and increase your chances of winning a trip, an online course or a Web site! See the Summit details ... Now for an exciting announcement: BetterPhoto has launched a partnership with Big Brothers Big Sisters! BetterPhotoMentor will help teens become inspired and learn about photography. Learn how you can help... That's it for now. Enjoy your week of photography!

Jim Miotke
Where Is Jim?

Updates From BetterPhoto

At BetterPhoto, we have an outstanding line of online courses that focus on Nature and Travel photography! ... Or check out our entire school schedule. The 2007 BetterPhoto Summit photography conference is coming up fast - just 6 weeks away. You'll learn new techniques, have a lot of fun, and really get inspired. Plus, if you sign up now, you'll increase your chances of winning a great prize in the Summit contest! An awesome new program - BetterPhotoMentor - will help teens get involved with photography. And you can help - by donating a digital camera that you no longer use! Read the details...

Photo Q&A

1: Exposure Settings For Each Image?
Does the Nikon D200 save exposure settings? If so, how do you access them?
- Nancy Barnhart
The exposure settings for each image captured are embedded in the NEF (Nikon's RAW file) and JPEG files. It should be available to view in most editing programs, or with an EXIF (Exchangeable Image File Format) plug-in to IE and other browsers. Some editing programs may default to stripping the EXIF data when saving the image file for the Web or highly compressed JPEG, so you may need to adjust the settings to keep the info.
- Jon Close
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2: The Lens Hood: What Is It?
I would like to get more information about the lens hood. I have one and I see them used, but I'm not sure what they do exactly. I would like any info on how to use it and what it is for?
- Karen L. Monte
Aside from looking cool and making your equipment look more expensive, the lens hood actually does some cool stuff for you.
It is mostly for use outside in the sun because lens hoods prevent the light from hitting the lens at extreme angles and causing the light to bounce around inside creating images that look like they have no contrast in them whatsoever. It also does stuff to remove lens flare, which is usually not something people want in their photos.
Having one on your camera also protects the lens and makes it tougher for the glass to get scratched and makes it tough to get finger prints on it and so forth. A lens hood "should" come with every lens but that isnt always the case.
- Michael A. Bielat
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3: Printing from Disc: Photos Are Grainy
Does printing from a disc create poor quality? I have tried cleaning the heads, etc.
- Suzanneraehardy 
If you mean the old film discs, then yes, the tiny negative will produce grainy photos.
If you mean digital photos stored on a CD-ROM or DVD, it depends on the resolution of the file stored on the disc. If it is a low-res highly compressed jpg suitable for email or computer display (as is common for labs that develop/print film and also include a CD of the photos), then it will likely not have enough resolution for printing.
- Jon Close
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4: When Shooting, Should Both Eyes Be Open?
When photographing, should you keep both eyes open - or close one?
- Bernard Dee
If you use a point-and-shoot camera, and use the LCD screen to compose your image, then it doesn't really matter if you use one eye or two. If you put your eye up to a viewfinder to compose your shots, you'll find it is much easier to see the viewfinder if you close the other eye.
Chris Vedros
- Chris A. Vedros
I find that keeping one eye closed for any length of time gives me a headache. I'll close one eye to critically focus, and make sure the composition is "clean". Then with both eyes open, I'll take a deep breath, hold it, and squeeze off the shot.
- Bob Cammarata
Hi Bernard,
Actually, this can be a serious issue. Traditionally, film cameras favored by sports photographers are equipped "sports finder". This is a simple wire frame viewfinder with a peep hole sight at one end and a rectangular wire frame at the other. This system provided a view that was more or less a visualization of what the camera will see.
Now the important ingredient is: The image seen via the sports finder is life-size. This is essential to sideline photographers as it thwarts them from getting clobbered. You see, the view through a range-finder camera presents a miniaturized view as does film SLR cameras when mounted with a normal lens. What I am saying is, these views should carry the warning; same as a convex automobile side mirror, objects appear smaller than they actually are. Now Nikon and others came out with a 58mm lens. This was favored by sideline photographers with SLR’s as it presents a life-size image. Now sideline photographers could keep both eyes open and shoot and be safer as they could generally judge that a football or the baseball or a player was coming straight at as the viewfinder image was actual size, giving the eye/brain the data it needs to cause one to duck.
So the answer is: working in the sports environment or when conditions are such that you need good vision and awareness of your surrounds, keep both eyes open if you can.
Alan Marcus (caution dispenses marginal technical advice)
- Alan N. Marcus
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5: How to Mount Digital Prints
I would like to know what I can use to mount digital photos on acid-free matte board. Do I use heat fusing or cold mount? I want to enter a contest, and their rules say the photo must be mounted on matte board, no archival mounting, just flat on the matte board. I have used heat mounting paper with b/w and other film color prints. With digital color prints, I do not want to alter the color. Please help me decide which to use. Thanks!
- Carol A. Roux
Use spray adhesive. Inkjet prints don't do well with a heat press, the ink often runs. Not familiar with the term "cold mount", unless you mean spray adhesive.
- John Sandstedt
Hi Carol,
I agree that a heat press is not a good idea. I know it doesn’t work with my HP 8750 printer. However, I hate spray adhesive. It is very messy, and the glue you inhale is bad for you. Most of the time I use photo corners, and hide the corners with a matte. Alternatively, there is a product called Gudy 831, check out this link I put a test print using this stuff in a sunny window more than a year ago - no problems so far! Really, I think this is a great product.
Thanks, John Siskin
- John H. Siskin

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