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Monday, October 04, 2010
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Q&A 1: Photographying Ev...
Q&A 1: Which file woul...

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Parallax: Straightening Angled Lines

By Jim Zuckerman

How many times have you photographed a building and not liked the way the vertical lines angle inward? I’m sure the answer is many. Sometimes angled lines add a dynamic quality to a picture, but much of the time they do the opposite - the photo ends up being disappointing.

On a recent trip, I photographed classic medieval architecture in the old town area of Prague, Czech Republic. One photo was taken with a 50mm focal length. "Keystoning" or angled vertical lines resulted from the fact that the back of the camera - i.e. the plane of the digital sensor - was not parallel with the facade of the building. Had I shot the image from a tall ladder or an adjacent building such that I was positioned at the midpoint halfway up the height of the building, the vertical lines would look vertical.

In Photoshop, I corrected this problem using Select > all and then Edit > transform > distort. A box forms around the photograph and then you can grab any of the corners and drag them until the vertical lines are perfectly parallel with the top and bottom edges of the frame. Click return or enter, or if you want to get out of what you just did because you’ve made a mess and want to start over, click escape. That will remove the box around the picture.

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"5 Dinghy's"   B&W treatment
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Welcome to the 493rd issue of SnapShot!

Our 4-week online photography courses are fun, fast, to the point, and kick off this Wednesday (Oct. 6th)! BetterPhoto's classes are truly motivating. You'll get direct access to real pros. See our 4-week course schedule... ... Too soon? The 8-week photography school session begins November 3rd. ... If you haven't heard Jim Miotke's interview with longtime BetterPhoto instructor Vik Orenstein, you're in for a treat! Vik talks about her extensive experience as a portrait photographer, as well as her focus on being a creative artist and her mission to communicate authenticity. Listen to the photographer interview... ... In this issue of SnapShot, don't miss Jim Zuckerman's Photo Tip ("Parallax: Straightening Angled Lines") and Rob Sheppard's Featured Article ("Sharpness for Close-up Photography"). ... 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:

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Updates From BetterPhoto

One challenge that we all face with close-ups is sharpness. BetterPhoto instructor offers some excellent techniques for making sure your closeup photos are crisp and clear. Read these tips on getting sharper pictures... We are very proud of our virtual classroom, which is very interactive and very convenient. See how our photo classes work...

Photo Q&A

1: Photographying Event and Selling Photos
I have been asked to photgraph an event sponsored by a non-profit. First - being a non-profit - they were hoping to exchange services as payment. Listing me as a sponsor and listing on their website. Has anyone had any experience in how to handle a non-profit event? Second, they want the photos that I take of the people available to the attendees - for purchase after the event. My idea was to have them give me their email addresses then I could send them all an email after with a link to the photos. Does anyone have another idea? and do I need some sort of sign off from everyone as well? disclaimers or anything? thanks Rhonda
- Rhonda Royse
Hi Rhonda,
I have done quite a bit of work with non-profits and they can be a pain sometimes, but in your case, I would just create a gallery of the images you take and give a link to the gallery to the non-profit to display on their website so the patrons can go and purchase prints afterward. You can actually create the gallery and link now and then upload the images after the shoot :)
Are you going to set up a space for shooting individual portraits (recommended) or just shoot in a photo-journalistic style? The advantage of setting up an area is that you can select a nice background & lighting that will be more consistent. The journalistic style will create more challenges as each time you move or turn, the lighting & background will vary.
If everyone attending is aware that you are shooting the event, the NP should make a blanket statement or have signage displayed that should cover the shoot so you wont be required to have individual release forms signed but I would carry a stack just in case.
I shoot large festivals for a couple of production companies and it is always stated entering the venue that by entering, patrons are doing so with the knowledge that cameras & video will be actively recording the event and they are in effect agreeing to be photographed. I am still a bit cautious when shooting children but usually mom/dad are close by for obtaining their nod of approval.
Hope this helps and have fun!
- Carlton Ward
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Answer this question:
1: Which file would you save?

Just came back from a weeklong trip and bracketed nearly all photos so I ended up with a mixture of properly exposed shots, as well as some slightly underexposed and some slightly overexposed. Which file is best to keep, the under or overexposed? I would prefer to delete all but one file of each scene. Thanks!
- Sharon  Day

Hi Sharon,
Unless you are really hurting on disk space, I would keep them for a while or until you know for sure that you are not going to edit them via HDR imaging. Otherwise, I would just keep the best exposed one of the set and by best exposed, that doesn't necessarily mean what the camera metering says, what does your eyes say. I sometimes prefer a bit under-exposed image as I can recover highlights easier if there are drastic/contrasting light in the image.
my .02

- Carlton Ward
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