The weekly newsletter on the art of photography from
Monday, October 03, 2011
Featured Gallery
Welcome Note
This Week's Tip
Updates From BetterPhoto
Q&A 1: Some Photos Sti...
Q&A 2: Framing images...

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Sharpness Tips with a Tripod!
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Featured Gallery
© - Graeme  Chow

Welcome to the 545th issue of SnapShot!

Lots of things are happening at BetterPhoto these days - all good! First off, our 4-week interactive online photo courses kick off this Wednesday, October 5th. But here's the big news: We have an outstanding sale going on this week! Save $20 off 4-week photography classes with gift card code Fall20. Also, save $40 off 8-week photo courses with gift card code Fall40. You must hurry, though, since the sale runs only through this Friday, October 7th. ... In this issue of SnapShot, be sure to read Lynne Eodice's Featured Article (Creative Photography - Capturing Texture) and Jim Miotke's and my Photo Tip (Sharpness Tips with a Tripod!). ... That's it for now. Have fun with your photography! †† Kerry Drager†† Newsletter Editor

Jim Miotke
Where Is Jim?

Updates From BetterPhoto
By making a strong statement about texture, you can add a tactile dimension to your photos. See Lynne Eodice's excellent BetterPhoto Instructor Insights article! Imagine taking your vacation photography from just OK to truly outstanding! Check out Denise Miotke's awesome new 4-week online course, which begins this Wednesday. Check out Rob Sheppard's new online photo course at BetterPhoto's digital photography school. This 4-week class, which kicks off this Wednesday, is fully interactive AND it features video lessons!

Photo Q&A

1: Some Photos Still Not Crisp

I have a Nikon lens 80-200mm F/2.8D without VR. When I go to post-processing my photos, the last thing I will do is sharpen a little. On some of my photos they are very crisp/sharp, and on al ot of them they are so far off when you go in to sharpen it looks way out of focus. Do you think my problem is in movement of camera (I use a monopod) or could I still not have shutter speed where it should stop all motion. Not real sure if there is a difference from 80mm and photos I shoot at 200mm. Help, I want my photos to be real sharp as I sell online to football parents. Can send some photos if that would help. Thanks Tom
- Tom Fleeman

Sharpening really isn't intended to make an out of focus picture look in focus. It can't do that. If it's out of focus, it's out of focus. Sharpening is for the slight edge softness that comes from the filter inside the camera that covers the sensor. Or it can make something with slight motion blur look better.
There's a difference in motion blur and something being blurry because it's out of focus. Put some photos in your gallery or add them to the discussion instead of sending them. Offhand, I think your problem could be you're just not getting things in focus.

- Gregory LaGrange

They are out of focus due to either camera shake, bad focusing, or too slow of a shutter speed to stop motion. Do you have auto focus? Do you have it set to "C" for continuous? Is the lens diopter set for your eye if using manual focus?

- Dennis Flanagan
Read this Q&A at

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2: Framing images

Hi all Ė For a number of years, Iíve worked for various nature, environmental and travel groups and agencies. For much of this time, Iíve seen myself as a writer who also does photography and, indeed, this is how Iíve sold myself (fairly successfully). Last year, I was asked to submit work for a regional "art of nature" exhibit. Much to my surprise, several of my submissions won the attention of the judges and, even more surprisingly, the critics. Earlier this year, I had my first real (as in Boston, not here in the sticks) gallery show and have had two additional shows since. I am now trying to sell my work separate from my writing and meeting with some success. This is all wonderful, of course, but Iím realizing I have a real knowledge gap when it comes to framing my work.
Until recently, I bought my frames at a craft and art store near my home. However, while inexpensive, these frames are clearly not quality made and are causing me more problems than help.
Iíve done some online research, but need the input from you more experienced folks. What type frames do you use? How much do you consider reasonable to pay for frames? Finally, where do you purchase the frames? Any ideas, suggestions and input you can offer will be very welcome! Thanks, folks.
- Irene Troy

Hi Irene,
How are you? I have been round the block with the whole framing thing as well and I try to use local shops but I also use MPIX. The local shops are easier and you can see the frames and mattes and sometimes the shops will cut me a deal if I order a few at one time.
The cheap frames usually look cheap and the quality is noticeable.
My last MPIX frame showed up with broken glass (FedEx) and the glass also scratched the 12 x 18 image. This is a first and is not the norm for MPIX/FedEx but this one must have dropped pretty hard as it was well-packed.
Another thing is picking out the frame style color and matte that is the most flattering to the image. For most of my landscape/nature images, I tend to like darker wood with gray mattes as these tend to make the image stand out nicely.
You have to pay for quality frames but the cost gets easily transferred when you sell it as the frame quality makes the image even more attractive.
Hope this helps,

- Carlton Ward

Hi Irene,
I did an article about framing sometime ago. Perhaps it will help: A well-presented photograph will represent you and your work more effectively.

- John H. Siskin

See John Siskin's Basic BetterPholio™:

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Thank you John, I also enjoyed reading your article. You are such a wealth of information :)

Congratulations Irene,
I am happy for you.
I am also gearing up for a show and it's a struggle to pay down the $$ to get my images framed, and a few of the prints are 24x30 and even a couple of 56x37-inch images but I may not frame these. There are also foam-core and other options for displaying your work but a nice frame is so attractive and is an easy sale since the customer will be able to take it home and hang it on the wall. At the show, you will get your $$ back plus a nice profit for your investment.
The MPIX frames are nice and worth the price but are a bit limited for selection, and it's really hard to tell what the frame really looks like from a small image on the web page. With my last order, the glass broke during shipment and scratched the image and matte so only the frame itself is usable and I will have a replacement print shipped from MPIX but will go pick out the glass and matte at a local frame store.
Have fun at your show,

- Carlton Ward
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Answer this question:

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