The weekly newsletter on the art of photography from
Monday, March 05, 2012
Featured Gallery
Welcome Note
This Week's Tip
Updates From BetterPhoto
Q&A 1: Shooting in Raw...

"This was an excellent learning experience! Tony Sweet provided a wealth of knowledge and critiques that forces you to thing differently about how you look at making images. ... Thanks to BetterPhoto and Tony, this was another fine way to learn some new ways of looking at image making." -John D. Roach, student in Fine Art Flower Photography

Get Creative: High-Key and Low-Key Imagery
By Lynne Eodice
One very compelling way to portray mood in an image is to control its lightness or darkness. Read BetterPhoto instructor's excellent thoughts: Creative Photography: High-Key and Low-Key Imagery

Featured Gallery
One of the Gods
© - Ken Smith

Welcome to the 567th issue of SnapShot!

Excitement abounds at BetterPhoto as we prepare for the launch of our March session of online photography classes. These 8-week and 4-week courses kick off this Wednesday (March 7th). ... What makes BetterPhoto's interactive courses so special? Here's a great rundown from instructor Jim Zuckerman: "One of the great things about these online courses is that students participate from all over the world. In a single lesson's uploads, you may see pictures from Bryce Canyon or Brazil, or from Singapore or South Carolina. It's a very stimulating environment, and it will help you become the photographer or digital artist that you would like to be." ... In this issue of SnapShot, be sure to read Peter Burian's featured articles ("Should You Buy a Full-Frame DSLR?" and "Use a Tripod for Your Serious Photography") and Lynne Eodice's Photo Tip ("High-Key and Low-Key Imagery"). ... That's it for now. Have fun with your photography!    Kerry Drager    Newsletter Editor

Jim Miotke
Where Is Jim?

Updates From BetterPhoto

Instructor Peter K. Burian offers his expert tips and insights on one of today's big DSLR decisions: Should You Buy a Full-Frame DSLR? As professional photographers will confirm, a tripod remains a valuable accessory providing benefits in technical and creative aspects. Read Peter Burian's BetterPhoto Instructor Insights article on the subject... .. check out this awesome new program at BetterPhoto!!

Photo Q&A

1: Shooting in Raw
It has been recommended to me that I try shooting in Raw format for my landscape photos. I know nothing about it, or where to begin, other than I understand there should be some software that came with my camera that will allow me to work with Raw photos. Any and all advice is greatly appreciated! Thanks.
- Ralph E. Jostes
I'm a fan of Raw for ALL photos, not just landscapes. It isn't so much that Raw is "better" for this or that kind of photography - it is a different workflow for all your photos.
Rather than let the camera make decisions on how to format/present your final image in a JPEG, you make all the decisions, while converting the Raw file to a JPEG (or other format) in the Raw processing software. Raw files are not compressed (so they take up MUCH more memory chip space, and hard drive space) but it also means they have all the data in them that the camera sensor can capture - whereas a JPEG made in the camera will have to throw out a lot of data without your input. As a result, there's much more data to work with in Raw, which is critical, say, when you want to recover details lost in deep shadow, or tone down near-burn-out highlights.
I can't find any details in your gallery or elsewhere about what camera you shoot with, but yes, the software included with the camera is a great place to start exploring Raw. If you use Photoshop, and have a high-enough version to include Adobe Camera Raw, that is a great tool as well for performing edits on your Raw files to prep them for JPEG/TIFF conversion.
- Christopher J. Budny
You don't have to have the most expensive digital SLR to benefit from Raw format. Sometimes the brightness range in an image is such that your highlights may blow out to pure white, or your shadows may block up or both. You can deal with this in Raw processing.
Your camera might come with Raw processing software, but I don't use mine (Canon and Pentax). If you don't have a recent edition of Photoshop or Elements, Adobe Lightroom 3 is available right now at incredible discounts from the major online retailers. I suggest you get it, if you need it.
- Doug Nelson
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