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If you've ever seen those waterfall photographs where it's bright daylight but the water appears to be flowing smoothly as if the shutter speed is very slow, you're probably looking at a photo taken with a neutral density filter over the lens. They basically darken the scene allowing for a longer shutter speed to be used when there is still bright sunlight. Graduated neutral density filters are also popular. GND filters darken part of a scene, e.g. a bright sky, allowing a more even illumination throughout the picture. Below are a few great examples of photos taken with neutral density filters, I hope you enjoy them.
It is of little wonder why so many people take the time to photograph birds, the natural variation present in this group of organisms together with the fact that they can be found on your doorstep make them a very accessible subject to photograph. However it can be quite daunting when you first decide you want to start photography or want to step up your hobby with the aim of getting a DSLR.
Fujifilm have recently announced their latest bridge camera, the FinePix S8400W. Boating a 44x optical zoom and wifi connectivity, it's certainly an interesting candidate if you're looking to update your current camera. It's a 16 megapixel camera, offering 1080i video recording at 60 frames per second and an ISO range of 100-12800.Expect a release date around May 2013.
Here's another competition to get your cameras into. The kennel club in the UK have launched the dog photographer of the year competition for 2013. It's a free to enter competition and its open to amateur and professional photographers alike.
It doesn't look like there's a wealth of prizes if you're the chosen winner, namely trophies, rosettes and possibly a lovely dog collar, but the prestige and warm feeling knowing you've taken a brilliant photograph appreciated by the masses must be reward enough surely!
If you fancy putting your photography skills to the test, why not enter this architectural photography competition?
The theme of the competition is colour in architecture and the deadline for submissions is July 15th 2013 and the competition is open to everyone. With $1500 prize money up for grabs it's certainly tempting. The only snag is the $25 registration fee, but if you're feeling confident that you've captured a photographic marvel, why not take a punt?
Photographing lightning can provide some quite amazing results. Such photos generally require a tripod set-up and a slow shutter speed to capture multiple bursts of lightning as they leave their storm clouds and hit the earth. There are many different types of lightning, including the traditional single bolt hitting the ground, to sheet lightning between clouds, the commonly associated forked lightning as well as forms such as ball lightning and chain lightning, to name but a few.
Light painting is not difficult to learn, doesn't require much experience and is a lot of fun! The idea behind this technique is really simple: while shooting a long exposure photo, move a source of light around, this gets recorded onto the sensor of the camera as an abstract drawing or 'light painting'.
The technique of "photo stitching" has been around a while, and was used even in traditional or analogue photography, albeit in a crude way. In the past, photos were stitched together using transparent tape. Today, in the digital world, computers do the work, but the idea is still the same. The technique consists of taking several overlapping pictures and editing them with computer software (known as post processing) to obtain a single panorama covering up to 360 degrees. Some compact cameras have an integrated feature which achieves the same effect without the need for post-processing. But in order to achieve the highest quality, you often need to do it yourself.