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All posts in "GAC How To"

Jun 8

GAC How To…Share Your Photos

Ed. note: How many times have you taken photos at a concert or festival, only to find that they’re either blurry, too dark or too light? Wouldn’t you love to know which camera is the best one for you? And wouldn’t you love to know how to use that camera correctly? We asked professional photographer Sara Kauss to be our special GACTV.com “How To…” blogger for the next few weeks. Sara has graciously agreed to pass along all of her tips and tricks to YOU, just in time for the CMA Music Festival and summer concert season! Her first post was How To Find the Right Camera for Your Budget — and then she explained How To Use Your Camera. Third, Sara shared How To Use a Computer to Enhance Your Images. Now that you’re a master student of photography, Sara’s going to tell you how to share those gorgeous photos you’ve been taking!

How To…Share Your Photos

Now that we’ve taken the photos and edited them in iPhoto, it’s time to share them with friends and family! The easiest way to do this is directly from iPhoto. In iPhoto, you can use the toolbar to easily upload albums and images to Flicker, Facebook and Mobile Me. My favorite feature is Email. iPhoto will re-size the image for you, making it friendly for email accounts with inbox restrictions, or larger for sharing a photo of mom’s grandchild for her to print on her own.

Image courtesy of sarakauss.com.

In iPhoto you can create a card, calendar, or even book from your gallery of images. It’s as easy as 1, 2, 3!

Image courtesy of sarakauss.com.

If you are using another photo editing application, you can easily take saved images and upload them to Facebook and Flickr using their upload online system. Once you have added them to Facebook, tagging your friends is the fun part!  Sit back and wait for the comments.  In regards to concert images, make sure to Continue Reading

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Posted at 10:42 am | Permalink
Jun 7

GAC How To…Use a Computer to Enhance Your Photos

Ed. note: How many times have you taken photos at a concert or festival, only to find that they’re either blurry, too dark or too light? Wouldn’t you love to know which camera is the best one for you? And wouldn’t you love to know how to use that camera correctly? We asked professional photographer Sara Kauss to be our special GACTV.com “How To…” blogger for the next few weeks. Sara has graciously agreed to pass along all of her tips and tricks to YOU, just in time for the CMA Music Festival and summer concert season! Her first post was How To Find the Right Camera for Your Budget – and then she explained How To Use Your Camera. Now that you’re taking beautiful pictures, Sara’s going to tell you how to use your computer to make those photos look even better!

How To…Use a Computer to Enhance Your Photos

Now that you have a good understanding of what camera to purchase and how to use that camera, let’s talk about ways to enhance the photos on your computer. 

There are numerous photo applications. For the amateur photographer, you could use anything from Adobe Photoshop to Aperture. If there is free software that came with your camera, check that out too!  When you’re just getting started, I would recommend using a simple application like iPhoto to make subtle adjustments with huge impact!  If you want to get fancy, Adobe Photoshop Elements is another great one with a few more tweaks and tricks available (tips I’ll save for another blog post!).

iPhoto 101

The first thing to play with in iPhoto is the Effects function. It gives you options to create a Black and White image or Sepia tone image with the click of a button. My favorite is the Boost Color button because I’m a huge fan of bright, saturated greens and blues in my photos. This Boost Color makes the image pop with contrast and saturation. 

Image courtesy of sarakauss.com

The effects you have used show up as numbers underneath the little thumbnail images. You can increase the amount of each effect easily by clicking the arrow next to the number. For example, if you wanted to add more “Boost Color” to the image, to make it a bit more color saturated, you would click the arrow next to the oust Color number. 

Here’s a black and white image example. 

Image courtesy of sarakauss.com.

The other fun setting you should become familiar with in iPhoto is the Adjust button. This gives you options to change the color, contrast, lightness, and darkness of your photo with more precision than the Effects button. When you click the Adjust button, Continue Reading

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Posted at 2:08 pm | Permalink
Jun 6

GAC How To…Use Your Camera

Ed. note: How many times have you taken photos at a concert or festival, only to find that they’re either blurry, too dark or too light? Wouldn’t you love to know which camera is the best one for you? And wouldn’t you love to know how to use that camera correctly? We asked professional photographer Sara Kauss to be our special GACTV.com “How To…” blogger for the next few weeks. Sara has graciously agreed to pass along all of her tips and tricks to YOU, just in time for the CMA Music Festival and summer concert season! Her first post was How To Find the Right Camera for Your Budget. Now that you have that camera, Sara’s going to tell you how to use it to shoot beautiful pictures!

How To…Use Your Camera

Now that you have a camera, I challenge you to take 15 minutes every day and have fun with it!  Every day, practice with a different setting on your camera so you get comfortable. Start with your flash. This is the most critical feature on your camera to master for all photographers, novice and professional. 

Image courtesy of B&HPhotoVideo.com.

Play with your Flash! The little lightning bolt can do lots. Sunday evening, when you’re making dinner indoors with the kids or walking downtown at dusk, try playing with this setting. When you change the lightning bolt to the lightning bolt with the crossed out lightning bolt, the camera will not use the flash in its automatic settings. Under the FUNC/SET button, make sure your camera is set to HIGH ISO. You will want to shoot at the highest ISO possible on your camera in low-light conditions as to provide the least amount of blur in your photos, due to camera shake when holding the camera. 

Low ISO (or Auto ISO) is great for natural light situations, i.e. outdoors. An example of a great time to use Auto ISO is when you’re with friends on the beach or having a picnic in a tree-covered park. The lower the ISO, the more vibrant the colors in your photos will be. However, you can always fix color in photo editing applications – but you cannot fix a blurry photo. 

It is important to remember that flash is what gives you stability in low-light situations, so take a deep breath and hold your camera very steady when shooting without a flash. Or, a simple trick is to set the camera on a ledge, use your 2-second timer setting and let the camera take a photo completely shake-free! The shake of even you breathing can cause blur in your images. 

At a concert, it is important to shoot with the flash off. The flash on a typical point-and-shoot camera when the lens is zoomed out is estimated to reach about six feet. That is not enough power to light an entire stage. Besides, a stage has such great available light highlighting the artists and band, it’s just not needed. If you shoot with your flash, your camera will say to itself “okay, let’s light up everything that is within six feet of me,” which is not enough reach to capture the stage. This is what makes the people’s heads in front of you nice and bright, while the artist singing is still stuck in the dark.

Image courtesy of B&HPhotoVideo.com.

The High-Speed Burst mode is another great setting for concerts. In this mode, your camera is Continue Reading

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Posted at 4:14 pm | Permalink
Jun 3

GAC How To…Find the Right Camera for Your Budget

Ed. note: How many times have you taken photos at a concert or festival, only to find that they’re either blurry, too dark or too light? Wouldn’t you love to know which camera is the best one for you? And wouldn’t you love to know how to use that camera correctly? We asked professional photographer Sara Kauss to be our special GACTV.com “How To…” blogger for the next few weeks. Sara has graciously agreed to pass along all of her tips and tricks to YOU, just in time for the CMA Music Festival and summer concert season! We thought we’d start at the beginning. Exactly which camera is the right camera for your budget?

How To…Find the right camera for your budget

Canon PowerShot

Why is this little PowerShot so great? This camera is great because of the high ISO option for shooting in low-light situations. Also, the 28-112 mm lens will allow you to be about an airplane away from your subject. Keep in mind, the difference between optical zoom and digital zoom makes a difference in your photos. Once you go past the optical zoom, which is the true zoom, you are basically just “cropping in” the image to get closer, the digital zoom. The digital zoom will show up “pixilated” (your photo as dotty little specks).

Almost all cameras now come with a video mode – and this is a great feature. It’s nice to have the ability to flip a switch and switch to film making.

Canon PowerShot G12

What makes this one more expensive? For the semi-professional photographer, or extreme hobbyist, this camera is awesome because it gives you the small compact feel of a little camera with a lot of function. The Canon PowerShot G12 has lots of features, but my favorite feature is the ability to shoot in manual modes. It’s important sometimes in low light photography to Continue Reading

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Posted at 5:01 pm | Permalink