The weekly newsletter on the art of photography from
Monday, July 05, 2010
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Welcome Note
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Updates From BetterPhoto
Q&A 1: Indoor Portrait...
Q&A 2: Fine Art or Pos...

"I have learned so much more than I could ever have expected! This class was challenging in the best possible way, and I thoroughly enjoyed every moment. Susan and Neil's critiques were encouraging and insightful, and the assignments were the right balance of theory to match the practical application. I look forward to participating in the Silvermans' Beyond the Basics course soon!" - Cheryl Winn , student in Understanding Digital Photography

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Want a Strong Graphic Design? Look for Pattern!
A great way to keep your pictures looking like professional images rather than like mere snapshots is to be on the lookout for patterns, writes Kerry Drager in his Team BetterPhoto blog. It's not hard to do. Patterns are everywhere! Read Kerry's blog here...

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He Thinks He is Batman
© - Linda  D. Lester

Welcome to the 480th issue of SnapShot!

The next online school session kicks off this Wednesday (July 7th). And what a lineup we have, with a full range of 4-week photo courses and 8-week photography classes! We also have two outstanding new courses: Exposure and Processing and Travel Photography: Capturing the Spirit of a Place. ... Where's the BetterPhoto Forum? This question comes up a lot, and here's the answer: One of the cool benefits of being a Masterpiece or Basic member, a student, or a Deluxe/Pro owner is access to the BetterPhoto Forum. Simply click the "Discussions/Q&A" tab in your Member Center. ... Have a few minutes? Check out the Team BetterPhoto blog, in which BP team members share their thoughts, interests, and tips! ... That's it for now. Have fun with your photography!    Kerry Drager   Newsletter Editor    Where is Jim Miotke? Follow BetterPhoto's founder and president on Twitter - BetterPhotoJim - and in his blog:

Jim Miotke
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Updates From BetterPhoto

BetterPhoto has a "frequent flier" program for courses! For every five online photo classes you take, you receive a 50% discount on your next course. Learn more about MVBP Rewards... Compact cameras are lightweight, fit in your pocket, and you can carry one everywhere - no excuses for missed opportunities! So says Deborah Sandidge, who takes on beach photography in her excellent BetterPhoto Instructor Insights blog... o ahead, have a life! That's because, at BetterPhoto, we offer online classes according to YOUR schedule. Find out the details...

Photo Q&A

1: Indoor Portraits with Manual Mode

I am currently learning how to shoot in manual mode with my Nikon D60. I feel like I pretty much have it down when it comes to outdoor photographs, but indoor is another story. How should I set up the manual mode to take a picture with enough light without having to have the flash on? In the manual mode with the flash, there is a delay in taking the picture once the shutter release is pressed. I am missing out on a lot of great photos of my children because of this. If I don't use the flash, the picture is way too dark. I keep changing back to auto mode and that makes the pictures look a shade of blue (which I then have to edit). Any tips or suggestions would be greatly appreciated!
- Jennifer E. Fitzsimmons

Try using Aperture mode. You still have creative control over Depth of Field, but the camera sets the remainder of the exposure. Otherwise, I worry that you'll have to decrease your shutter speed to such a low number that you'll be bombarded with blur.
Happy shooting!

- Lisa C. Lloyd

Set your ISO to 800. Your meter should still read the light so center the little arrowhead in the middle of the scale (in the viewfinder). Try to shoot at least 1/100 second. After your first photo, you can decide if you want to adjust your shutter speed or aperture.
You may want to adjust both. Don't worry if when doing this adjustment that the little arrow indicates that you are overexposing. Remember, you are controlling the camera and not letting it decide everything. If ISO 800 isn't fast enough and you want to avoid noise, I recommend that you use the built-in flash. If it still comes out too blue, set your color balance to shade or cloudy. Take a few test shots when the kids aren't around so you will have an idea where to set it when they are inside playing. The great thing about digital is you can see the results immediately and it doesn't cost anything but time. Did you set the camera for flash when using it? If not, that could be a problem with the color balance.
Good luck.

- Lynn R. Powers

"...In the manual mode with the flash there is a delay in taking the picture once the shutter release is pressed. I am missing out on a lot of great photos of my children because of this. ..."

My guess is the delay is due to the camera's red-eye reduction feature. This will flicker a lamp for a second or two to get the subject's irises to close. Try turning it off (see p. 65 of the D60 instruction manual).

- Jon Close

Thanks everyone for your feedback! Jon, I did take a look at the flash and you were right, I had it on the red-eye reduction. I turned it off and now the picture takes right away! I can't believe it was that simple to fix! Thanks so much.

- Jennifer E. Fitzsimmons
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2: Fine Art or Posters?

I have a large format printer and sell my photos (mostly 13 x 19) as fine-art images through two galleries - and to friends and people who found me through BP. The question is, now that I have a great source for printing posters cheaply, should I be selling that way? Will that kill my fine-art sales? In the current economy, would it be better to sell more images for less money? I have not put cards in my galleries for fear people would buy them and not the big ones. (Just like I do.) What do you think? Aloha,
- Fax Sinclair

We have much in common and I've crossed that bridge myself. Personally, I found making the prints at home to be extremely costly not even including the printer investment.
My question to you is: Did you find an outside source to make quality prints versus making prints at home? I don't make prints at home any longer since I found a lab I trust and provides high-quality prints (as large as I wish) for a fraction of what the ink and paper cost at home.
I also sell my prints in galleries and occasionally at art fairs. I look at it as a "win-win" since they (lab) provide much higher quality than any home printer under $2,000.00 at less cost per print to myself. Better quality equals more sales, lower price equals higher profit margin.
I sell my prints as cards also - it turns out that it's the biggest part of my business. Not just speaking for myself but other photographers as well. Often times the cards pay for the vendor spot! I prefer that the customer not leave empty-handed. Hope I have helped you Fax. Visited your web site, your work is gorgeous :)
Best of luck.

- Thomas W. Schoeller
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