The weekly newsletter on the art of photography from
Monday, July 04, 2011
Featured Gallery
Welcome Note
This Week's Tip
Updates From BetterPhoto
Q&A 1: Polarizing Filter...
Q&A 1: Settings for Lo...

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Photographing Reflections
By Deborah Sandidge
Reflections are one of my very favorite ways to portray a subject. Opportunities are everywhere, from the smallest puddle to the open sea. The slightest breeze can alter the outcome. The patterns change from mirror perfect, to painterly all within a few minutes. The results are always serendipitous and random, which makes photographing reflections so interesting to me.
Mornings work well as the water is often the most calm. Depending on the angle, a polarizer may help by reducing glare on the water, try it and see. Happy shooting...

Featured Gallery
Dandelion Bling III
© - Debbie Hartley

Welcome to the 532nd issue of SnapShot!

Are you ready to take the next step in your photography? BetterPhoto's upcoming Summer school is the place to be. Beginning this Wednesday (July 6th), our 8-week online courses and 4-Week online Short Courses get under way. Sign up now to secure your spot, since some classes have already filled. ... In this issue of SnapShot, be sure to check out Peter Burian's featured article ("GPS Add-on Units for DSLR Cameras"), Jim Zuckerman's Featured Blog ("Pay Attention to Shadows!"), and Deborah Sandidge's photo tip ("Photographing Reflections"). ... That's it for now. Have fun with your photography!    Kerry Drager   Newsletter Editor

Jim Miotke
Where Is Jim?

Updates From BetterPhoto BetterPhoto instructor tackles the issue of GPS units - for Nikon DSLRs. Read his excellent article... When used to creative advantage, lighting contrast can make for eye-catching images. Read the BetterPhotoJim article here:

Photo Q&A

1: Polarizing Filter
I had a UV filter on my camera and shot 35 images that came out OK. I then added a polarizing filter, and all the rest of about 800 shots of baseball game were soft out out of focus. Should I have only used the polarizer without the UV filter still on camera?? Thanks.
- Tom Fleeman
It might be that you actually should have not used the polarizer at all, if you were trying to use auto focus. There's a linear polarized filter and a circular polarized filter. The circular allows the use of auto focus.
And it could also be that having more than one filter got in the way of your auto focus, if that's what you used. Or the polarizer could be of low quality optically, causing fuzzy images.
- Gregory LaGrange
Hi Tom,
Greg is correct and another point I would like to make is the quality of filters used. I have all L glass and placing a $40 UV filter in front of a $2000 lens that will most likely degrade sharpness and image quality doesn't make sense to me. I use B+W filters which are a bit pricey but they are very good quality and cheaper than the Singh Ray filters. I only use UV filters when it is hazy out and circular polarizers when shooting landscape images of dark scenes and waterfalls. Otherwise, I don't use them at all - not even for protection as I always have either a lens cap on while walking around or lens hood attached when shooting.
Hope this helps.
- Carlton Ward
Thanks for the response. I have an expensive lens also. I was hoping the polarizer would help with the glare from the sun at a baseball game I was shooting. I think the filter was $65. I was hoping it would help. I will try it by itself next time without the other filter. Thanks.
- Tom Fleeman
Hi Tom,
I didn't actually answer your question but I would not stack filters and I suspected you were using quality lenses which is why I gave you the answer I did. My 77mm B+W Circular Polarizer runs about $175 but it is well worth it and it fits all my lenses. Someday I will belly up the $400+ for a Singh Ray :)
- Carlton Ward
Other than checking to see if it's linear or circular, I would check to see if your shutter speed was too slow after adding the polarizer. A polarizer takes up two stops of light and if you weren't paying attention to that you may be seeing camera movement. Remember, your shutter speed needs to be at least 1 over the effective focal length of the lens. (Don't forget the multiplier if you're not shooting a full-frame camera.) I use Tiffen and Hoya and haven't had a problem. I rarely stack filters but I've never had it affect an image as you describe. Check your metadata. I think you will find the answer there.
- Randy  A. Myers
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1: Settings for Low Light Photography

I'm shooting a wedding and have a Canon 60d using my lens of 24-70mm us.2.8 Because of low light, I'm leaving my aperture wide open in the ap function. I know I should go with manual but still a little nervous using it when things are happening quickly. Two questions: 1. Should I use the AI Servo setting for when the bride and parties are walking down the aisle? 2. Also, can someone explain how or what I should select as my af point? I just can't seem to make this "click for me".
- Kelly A. Jones

Hi Kelly, I would not use the camera's Manual mode. Use AV mode, Aperture Priority, at f/2.8.
If shooting without flash in dark locations, you will probably need to use ISO 800 or ISO 1600. Try them and see what the shutter speed is.
You'll want a shutter speed of about 1/200 sec. or faster for moving people. (For static people, 1/60 sec. will be fine.)
In fact, if it's quite dark, you may need to use ISO 3200 to get a shutter speed as fast as 1/200 sec.
Yes, AI Servo will track the moving subjects. This is the best choice. I would either let the camera set the focus point (that would work fine with a couple walking down the aisle), or I would set the central focus point only (that provides more reliable autofocus in low light). BUT it also means that you must be sure that a part of the couple will be in the center of the frame. They probably will be, if I understand the type of photo you are planning. Afterwards, set the AF back to AF-S when shooting static subjects.
All the best!

- Peter K. Burian

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