IMPORTANT CAMERA CONCEPTS THAT EVERYONE SHOULD KNOW (PART 1)

11. Depth of Field – the range around the focal plane which is considered acceptably “in-focus” to the human eye. In general, the depth of field is increased by using smaller apertures, or by increasing the distance to the focal point. (For example, to get a very “shallow” depth of field, where only your subject is in focus and everything before and after is blurry – you can use a larger aperture and/or get closer to the subject either physically or by zooming in.)
12. Noise – this refers to image degradation caused by the sensor’s limitations in capturing and recording light, particularly in low-light situations. Image noise usually looks like random flecks or patterns of mis-colored light that are spread throughout a photograph – particularly noticeable in dark areas. Noise is the main drawback to bumping up ISO to take photos in low-light situations. In general, the higher the ISO, the “noisier” the resulting image. This is because ISO is increased by bumping up the image amplification of the image captured by the sensor – though images captured in low-light are amplified, so also are any imperfections and errors recorded by the sensor. Manufacturers are constantly battling to reduce noise in their cameras – as a result, the highest-end DSLRs (particularly Canons) exhibit acceptable noise levels even at ISO 800 and sometimes 1600 or 3200, whereas typical point-and-shoots often look terrible at ISO 400.
13. Prime Lenses – before the invention of “zooms” – all lenses had a fixed focal-length, and thus always took photos at the same distance-perspective. Prime lenses have the advantage of being simpler, lighter, and cheaper to construct that zooms. They also tend to produce sharper images (though this is not always the case anymore with the very best zooms) – and have larger maximum apertures (great for low-light shooting).
14. Zoom Lenses – these lenses sport variable focal-lengths, giving the photographer increased flexibility in taking pictures, without having to swap lenses. For example, a 24-70mm zoom allows the photographer to go from wide-angle lens (24mm) to normal (at 50mm) and almost to the low telephoto range (at 70mm) all with a single lens. While this is enormously useful in many situations, zooms have several disadvantages as well. They tend to be much heavier and more mechanically complex (and thus expensive) compared to primes. It is also hard to use large apertures for zooms, with fixed apertures being particularly problematic to achieve. Thus, most inexpensive zooms have variable max apertures (meaning the max aperture value changes depending on the focal length the photographer uses.) Fixed apertures are available, but they tend to be quite pricey, especially at larger apertures (f2.8 tends to be the highest max aperture available for DSLR zooms.)
15. Aperture-priority – a setting on a camera that allows you to select your desired aperture, then lets the camera choose the proper shutter-speed for itself (using it’s built-in sensors). Very useful when a photographer wants to use specific apertures to create bokeh, or improve image quality (the largest apertures often result in “soft” or blurry images on cheaper lenses).

6. Shutter-priority – a setting on a camera that allows you to select your desired shutter-speed, and lets the camera choose the best accompanying aperture to create a shot (using it’s built-in sensors). Useful if you absolutely need a specific shutter-speed to freeze motion, or achieve some other specific effect. (Note, in practice, I find I hardly ever have the need to specify a particular shutter-speed.)

GETTING STARTED WITH REAL ESTATE PHOTOGRAPHY

1Yes, Real estate is one of the world’s most competitive industries. With agents looking for their next big sale, it is like selling real estate is all about setting yourself apart from the competition. So how do you get your real estate catchy to the buyer’s eyes? The answer is simply by having a perfect home photo. With todays fast pace changing demands for real estate photography, it is a career pursuit to also go with it flow and explore new things to help you improve more and become more competitive. However, being successful in this industry requires some techniques and consideration that sets it apart from other photographic disciplines. So let’s take a look!

1The Right Gear

First of all, having the right gear is very important since these tools will set you up for success. So always choose your gear with consideration. This will be the first step that is needed to get started.

1. Camera
The key in having a picture perfect home is not all about the camera itself. Actually, you don’t need to have an expensive or latest camera to get solid shots. Real estate photography is possibly less demanding when it comes to camera. A camera with a good high ISO performance will always give you benefits.

2. Lenses
Camera lenses are also important in real estate photography. Having a wide angle lens is your always best bet. A wide angle or ultra-wide angle lens is the key to real estate photography success. Because the perspective provided by these lenses will allow you to put the viewer in the scene and making them feel as if they are actually in that home.

3. Accessories
Camera and photography accessories are also important to help you in your shooting procedures. Tripod is one of common accessories to have. It will give you more stabilization especially when shooting in an unstable environment.

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The Perfect Capture

Once you’ve got the right gears, capturing the scenes is the trickiest one. As a real estate photographer, you need to capture shots that will have the home solid in no time flat.

So, the first thing you should do is to survey the house, interior and exterior. Once you already got good ideas of how you should photograph the areas, just dive into the scene. Setup your camera and tripod and begin composing the scene the way that will showcase its beauty. This stage quite requires a certain appreciation for architectural designs.

After the shoot, collecting these photos and editing them is another way to enhance its beauty. There are already a lot of applications you can use to edit your photos. Adobe Photoshop is one of them and is commonly used by professional photographers. Also, having the right and enough knowledge of the software will give you edge on what kind of editing these photos should have. Using 3rd party programs are very useful to help you improve and eliminate unwanted objects around your photos. Above all, everything needs time and effort to become successful in real estate photography.

IMAGE EDITING OVERVIEW (PART 2)

1The Parametric Image Editing (PIEware)

By contrast, a parametric image editor generally cannot change the original pixels. By creating instructions or parameters for interpreting the file, changes can be made. So if adding more color red to a certain image, the software will create an instruction that tells to make more red pixels. The original pixel which is the source image will never changed at all but only reinterpreted. That is why parametric image editing in non-destructive type of editing.

Parametric Image editing is very well suited to many at a time workflow because it uses text-based instructions. You can take instructions that are made for one image and eventually apply them to other additional images.

1The Master File Concept

The creation of a masterfile is the result of Optimized image editing. A masterfile is a large version of the image in a wide gamut color space. It is processed with greater attention to detail, tone and color unlike the batch-processed capture files. Creating a masterfile is a necessary step for project which specifies Web use and Print use purposes.

File optimization can take place in PIEware as well as in raster image editing applications like Photoshop. It gives the selection of having both a traditional masterfile creation in Photoshop and a virtual masterfile creation in PIEware.

Since a Masterfile is highly rated by either the photographer, the client or both of them, it is considered to be a high-value image file. It is also a large time investment on PIEware, Photoshop or both. Make sure that these files are backed-up as working files and archived files. When doing the back-up strategy, it depends on whether the masterfile is a virtual type created in PIEware or in a standard formats such as PSD, TIFF or rarely, one of JPEG variants like JPEG 2000 and JPEG XR.
1High Dynamic Range Imaging (HDR)

HDR editing today can far surpass the dynamic restrictions of traditional chemical and digital photography. It can be used to recreate a scene more accurately just how human vision works. Today, there is already a lot of specialized software that offers HDR editing. These softwares are used to compress the greater tonal range of HDR images into a tonal range that can be displayed on conventional monitors or prints. When shooting for HDR scenes, a photographer needs to photograph a sequence of exposure-bracketed Low Dynamic Range (LDR) captures. Then use a software to merge them into a HDR file format.

 

Panorama Stitching

Panorama stitching is a process of stitching multiple images together in a one single image file. This is increasingly very popular image editing technique today especially when doing panorama images, super high resolution images of mosaic imagery and virtual reality tours.

AN INTODUCTION TO LIGHTROOM MOBILE

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERASpending a lot of time doing editing in Adobe Lightroom? And working at your desk for your Lightroom catalog? Luckily, that’s about to change with the help of Adobe Lightroom Mobile launched by the same developers of its desktop version. By just downloading and installing the app, you can do any editing anytime and anywhere. The mobile app is very convenient and easy to use.

To get started with Adobe Lightroom mobile, you need to update your existing Lightroom app to the latest version. Since launching alongside Lightroom mobile is the new Lightroom 5.4 which is a requirement when using the mobile version. Adobe Creative Cloud subscription is also needed to use the app. If you still don’t have one, you can try a 30-day free trial of Lightroom mobile when signing to Adobe ID.

1Getting Started with the App
To setup the Lightroom mobile, you need to sync the entire catalog to its cloud. Lightroom will send selected collections to the cloud but make sure you are signed to Lightroom 5.4 with your Adobe ID before attempting to start syncing.

Also, make sure to have a collection of images built in your app before starting with the synced collection. Right-click a collection name in the Collections panel and choose Sync with Lightroom mobile. Remember, only one catalog can be synced at a time and switching them will cause in losing the synced collection.

1The Culling Process
It is one of the key parts of Lightroom’s workflow. In the lower left corner of the images, you can see a flag icon that can be tapped to toggle an image as a pick. This is one of the uses of the app, to cull images set to the keeper images. You can also swipe up or down on the image to flag or unflag it. The app will immediately find its way to cull image collections down away from the computer.

1The Editing Process
Lightroom mobile almost have the same editing power to its desktop version. The interface is also designed to perfectly fit a touch screen device for easy handling and use. Editing in this app is very simple and yet powerful to its output. Picking an attribute, sliding the point and your editing changes will take effect. Cropping is also available here. You can pick an aspect ratio to crop images and tap and drag over the image to change your crop. Twisting your fingers can also be used to correct tilt.

1Sharing
You can also share your finished output by configuring the app to popular social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter.

IMAGE EDITING OVERVIEW (PART 1)

1Image editing has become a central part of modern photography process. Learning and understanding different image editing concepts will help you to fully utilize the techniques used in photo editing. As we do not know yet, or for some already knew this, there are actually two basic ways that images can be adjusted – Pixel editing and Parametric Image editing. Knowing the difference of these two methods have a lot of implications for how you approach image editing.

Pixel Editing

The basic kind of image editing and is commonly used today is what we call “Pixel Editing” which you actually alter the image’s pixels to make a change. So, when you want to add more red color to your JPEG, you increase the amount of red in the pixels. And when saving with these changes, you actually made a permanent change to your image since the original color information was replaced with the new color information. Meaning, the original image no longer exist unless if you made an extra copy of it.

1Image compositing

This requires pixel editing tools that are available in Photoshop and other raster image editors. It uses many images and layers that can take you days in this kind of work. This style is more on creating new image out of images. Meaning you are trying to combine different photos in one and letting your imagination at work. Sometimes this technique is referred to as “photoimaging “instead of photography.

Batch image editing

This kind of editing technique can be done in pixel editing apps like Photoshop but it is really much more viable to do batch editing in PIEware. The main reason is that, pixel editing is designed to do on a one-at-a-time process. Using actions in Photoshop can make it possible to make batch editing that is applied to all the images in a folder which are acted on one-by-one. While PIEware works by creating small instruction sets that are associated with each image file. These sets of instructions can be then applied either to individual or a number of selected image files. It can also be executed either as you work, saved up and applied as a batch.

The main difference of these two is that many discrete instruction sets can be applied, making some images become darker or lighter, more contrast or less, etc. in any number of combination.

1Optimized image editing

Image Optimization is reserved for highly rated images especially when it is selected by your clients. Optimized image editing takes image adjustments to a higher level of precision. Although you can optimize images to near perfection in PIEware, there are still many instances that an image requires a one-at-a-time process of Photoshop. Because In some cases, using HDR, Panoramic stitching or different vector graphic combinations need to be included into the image.

4 EASY STEPS TO IMPROVE PHOTO EDITING TECHNIQUES

1Ever wonder how photos displayed on different websites appear to be attracting to the eyes? Or do you think the photos you edited come up lacking compared to those images on other websites? If so, the answer might be simpler than you think. Doing the same editing style on your photos may not be still enough to this changing world of technology and photography. Adding some little improvements to your editing rules and styles might be the easier way to compete with others powerful photos over the internet. So here the steps you can use to improve any photos and are perfect for your websites, advertising and other media. Enjoy!
1Always start with small things

Before fixing any big things and imperfections to your photos, it is a good rule to look at the little things. It will lessen erasures and distortions to your photos. Start this by using tools used for easy fixtures like Clone stamp tool and Spot healing brush tool. To remove unnecessary objects to your image like wires, Clone Stamp Tool is best to use. While Spot Healing or Healing Brush Tool is great for removing blemishes especially when editing portraits and models. On the other hand, Red Eye Tool is perfect for fixing red eye problems in your photos.

1Usage of exposure adjustments

Aside from normal brightness and contrast adjustment from Photoshop, also try to use Levels and Curves. Levels and Curves adjustment are way better than brightness since it covers wide range for enhancing tones and exposures of your images.

Have that crisp on your images!

It is always good to know that adding sharpness to any photo will bring out its beauty. It is commonly used to bring back the photo’s details and contrasts. Sharpened images will become more attracting to screen display and when you need to print some of it, try to add a little higher as printing process can soften the image.

1Use the right color profile

Photoshop has this neat color fixing for enhancing the image’s color. You can use the LAB Color space to do it. Knowing the right color profile will help you make vivid colors in your photos. But aside from colors, you can also use the Grayscale for black and white ambiance of your photo.

UNDERSTANDING EXPOSURE PART 1

2Most of the digital and DSLR cameras today have an auto option to use. Yes, auto is great for quick snaps but it s not ideal to use when you are planning to do some creative shots. Understanding the camera settings and its uses is needed to make exposure decisions in full manual mode.

Having a full control f your camera is not as scary as you may think. It is all about trial and error at first but remembering some rule of good exposure is the key to achieve masterpieces. So here are the first two rules: Shutter speed and Aperture.

2The F stops or Aperture

Aperture setting on your camera determines the size of the hole allowing light through yo your camera’s sensor. It is measured in f stops. When aperture is closed down, it will reduce the light allowed in and when opened up, it will increase. Typically, the aperture scale of DSLR cameras is from f2.8 up to f22 that covers 6 stops. An aperture setting of f2.8 will let in more light than f22. Meaning the larger the f number, the smaller the aperture and vice versa.

It is important to know also that aperture controls depth of field in your exposure. Depth of field refers to the area of your shot which are in focus that allows you to decide in picking out specific objects to highlight in the background. Setting a large f number and small aperture will make a large depth of filed while large aperture or small f number will lead to shallow or small depth of field. So, aperture controls the amount of light by opening or closing a hole between your lens and camera’s sensor and it also allows you to control depth of filed.

 

The Shutter Speed

When having an aperture, you also need to balance your shot with correct shutter speed. Shutter speed determines the length of time your camera’s sensor is exposed to light. That is why to under-expose a shot is to use a faster shutter speed and to over-expose is to use a slow speed. You should always remember when a shot requires a slow shutter speed, you are likely to capture movements called “camera shake”. To reduce this, a tripod is commonly used but any means of steadying your camera is already enough.

BASIC PHOTO ENHANCEMENT FOR EXTERIOR SHOTS

Proper lighting is crucial to any types of photography especially on real estate photo enhancement. Natural light alone is still not enough to achieve any desired output. That is why using any third party editing software is very useful when it comes to enhancement and editing. Since we are already done for basic editing for interior shots, here is the other continuation on the last topic. Enjoy!
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Adobe Lightroom, Adobe Photoshop and Camera Raw are some of the commonly used editing application today. As for my example, I am going to use Adobe Lightroom. You can use any software but Lightroom has more tools and effects that you can use when editing.
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In this example, I imported an exterior shot and played a preset. Preset is a recorded editing process that you made to a photo which is very useful when you are dealing with a lot of photos to edit.

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So this is the settings on my preset. Unlike the indoor/interior shot, I did not make adjustments to its exposure since the photo itself already have enough lights. But you can still add some exposure if you encounter any photos that are gloomy and dark. Remember, when adjusting the exposure, you must also adjust the Recovery. This is to make sure that there will be no wash-out areas and recover the details of your photo.

Fill light on the other hand is used when you want to lighten some dark areas in your photo. It is commonly used than exposure since it only affects the dark portions and not the photo as a whole. Meaning, when you use exposure, all the areas of the photos will be lighten up including the areas that already have enough light. That is why there are the so-called “wash-out” areas. So fill light is easier and safe to use especially if are newbie to photo editing.

Blacks is used when you want to add or maintain the shade of the colors within your photo. Do not overuse it because it will lead to too darkening of dark areas.

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I also used the Brush tool to lighten some areas that fill light did to reach. So I have these settings for the brush tool. Just press “K” to the keyboard and carefully brush to dark areas.
Here is the Before and After preview of the edited photo:

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So now, here’s the final output. You can preview this and adjust parts that don’t satisfy you. But as for now, the output is great and ready to export!

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GOOGLE PICASA EDITING TIPS

1Based from its name, Google Picasa is one of Google’s popular software. Google Picasa is a free photo editing and managing software that is easier to use than other hard-core editing applications. It is made available for any operating systems like Windows, Mac and Linux. It makes life easier for beginners in photo editing and those who need to make quick fixes to their photos. It is also ideal for organizing your photos in many different ways. The software is user-friendly and anyone who does not have any background in editing can easily understand its tools and functions. That is why Google Picasa can save a day when editing photos become a nuisance.

When editing a photo in Picasa, the changes that are made by the editor does not directly applied to the image as such but would only appear in the editor itself. Meaning, unless you save or export the edited photo, the original image will appear in the same way, in any other viewer even though it appears changed in the Picasa. The reason behind this is that Picasa does not alter the original pixels of an image although it can change its appearance in a particular way. That is why Google Picasa cannot be categorized as an image editor in level with Adobe Photoshop or any other photo editing software, though it can perform most of image editing tasks.

Batch Editing
You can also batch edit several photos together saving more time as well as hazards in doing repetitive editing. By pressing the ctrl key and clicking on all the images, you can already select all the desired photos to be edited. Then, go to the select batch edit tab and apply the type of edit you want to perform.

Photo Editing Basics
Picasa can also do several types of editing including basic fixes that is commonly needed in any photo editing options. Tuning and effects are the examples of advanced type of editing. So, it is advisable to have a basic fixes to your photos before going to the advanced part.

In terms of cropping an image, try to stick to one standard cropping size which is given by Picasa. Always preview first the final output before cropping it.

When using the red eye tool, try the auto feature first and see the results. In case you are not yet satisfied, you can do it manually by clicking the red eye button and dragging the mouse pointer over the eye that needs to be fixed.

When using retouch, adjust the brush size before making the selections. Then click the area needing correction and then the area to copy from before clicking the apply button. As to the fill light option, do not overdo it to avoid wash-out areas and maintain its details. In tuning you photo, make sure the adjustment does not show evidence of manipulation because it will reduce the quality of the image making it less favored among its viewers.


Always use the effects option with caution since it will change the original image drastically. However, if you want to make explore more, feel free to experiment on the effects to achieve the desired output

10 REASONS WHY YOU SHOULD USE ADOBE LIGHTROOM (PART 2)

16. On-Image Editing
One of Adobe Lightroom’s great features is the On-image editing tool. It looks like a small circle with an arrow above and below it. The tool is under the Tone Curve and the HSL/Color/B&W panels. You can already apply local adjustments by targeting specific parts of your photos when you select the On-image tool. It will make the any alterations more instinctive and more effective than any other photo editing tools offer. You can also use the on-image tool to desaturate colors selectively.

7. A Whole New Way to Add Keyword
When trying to find specific photos, using keywords can save a lot of time. But doing so will also takes time to properly add those keywords to all your photos. That is why Adobe Lightroom really shines in this in terms of easiness. Adobe Bridge also offers keyword adding but Lightroom has so much more to give. Even during the time of importing your photos, you can already apply keywords on them. You can also add keywords to groups of selected images, you can apply them quickly with the use of the painter tool or you can even use and assign keyboard shortcuts to a set of keywords. With of all of these quick ways Adobe Lightroom has to offer to its users, keyword adding can never be become much more easy and faster than before.

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8. Easy Video Editing Features
Aside from editing and cataloging photos in which Adobe Lightroom is mainly use for, it also have video editing features. Though it is not advanced like Adobe Premiere (Don’t expect too much), it still does a good job. It offers basic video editing tools like video trimming, white balance correcting and basic exposure of your videos. When using Lightroom for video editing, do not use the Develop module as you will only be able to use its Library Module in the Quick Develop panel.

9. Catalog Filtering
Aside from quick ways to add keywords and GPS/ Geo-Mapping to help you categorize your photos well, Lightroom also allows you to quickly add filter and search through your photos easily by using the filter feature in Library Module. You can eve save your filtering results as a Collection so you can find them easily the next time you need them and turn a single keyword into a filter.

110. Use of Virtual Copies
We talked about before (Part 1) that Lightroom does not make any changes to the photos imported in the Library; hence it only records all the modification separately into its database. So, using a Virtual copy is another great way to save different edits of the same photo without duplicating its original photo. This is good to use if you want to compare these different edits and in this way, you can also save a lot of space from your storage.