Posts Tagged ‘canon’

TRICKS OF THE TRADE: BEAUTY BASICS

Let’s be real– taking your camera off of the auto setting can be super intimidating and down right scary if you’re not a pro. I’ll be the first to confess, I left my very first “big girl camera” on auto for years (and years). But now we’re livin’ in an incredibly image-rich, visually inspired society. Between Pinterest, Tumblr, Instagram + the infinite number of beautiful blogs on the interwebs you begin to want more control over your photos. I started to crave the ability to create my own images and wanted to push myself to learn what all those little buttons do. I saved up my pennies and invested in a Canon 5D shortly after we started TBD. I’m still no pro, but what I have learned has helped create most of the images you see on our site. I guess what I’m saying is, in order to turn your photos into something beyond basic, you’ll eventually have to take it off the trusty ol’ automatic setting. In the comment section of our last post with Canon, many of you mentioned that you’ve recently invested in a DSLR camera but are still learning how to use it. For the second half of our partnership with Canon, I thought it might be fun to share the 3 basic (and in my opinion, most important) things I learned when I started taking photos. A slightly different kind of tutorial than were used to but one that could help make things prettier just the same!
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ONE
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One photographer explained it to me like this– imagine a teeny tiny garage door that opens and closes really fast inside of your camera– that would be your shutter.  If I want to photograph hair and really capture each individual hair as they fly around in the wind, you need to go as high as possible with your shutter speed. The lower the shutter setting with any kind of motion, the blurrier it could be. This could also change depending on other settings, but we’re simply covering the 3 basics! You can see in the photo below that I wanted to get this hair, that hair + every hair captured so I knew I had to keep my shutter speed high. I’m also a huge fan of having the sun behind you when photographing hair.
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TWO
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Took me a long time to understand aperture. Basically, there’s a little ring inside your camera (as you can see in the photos above). That ring is what lets the light in. If it’s small, you get less light coming in. If it’s open wide, you get more light coming in. The concept of that is pretty simple. But this also controls the depth of field of your photo. If we shoot a beauty photo outside, I want my model to be completely in focus with the background slightly out of focus so the empasis is on the girl and you’re not distracted by what’s going on behind here.
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THREE
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ISO ratings were originally intended for film. I remember when my parents would buy film when I was a kid. If it was for my brother’s sporting events, they would buy a high number like 1600 or 3200 because people were going to be moving fast. If we were going to visit some slow moving family members for a birthday or if someone wanted to take pictures of still objects, they would pick up a much lower number ISO film. Same goes for DSLR cameras. Raise the number when shooting something that moves quickly (like hair) or lower it when shooting makeup or nails inside. If you ever get a super grainy photo when you didn’t want that, it’s probably because your ISO is set too high for whatever you’re shooting.
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Luckily, there are tons and tons of great photography video tutorials + workshops out there.  You’ll learn to juggle all 3 of these settings at once with some practice. Besides, if you spend the money on a DSLR  it’s worth it to push yourself to learn more about the guts of your camera, right? If you’re more advanced than some of us, we would absolutely love to hear any tips you might have below in the comments. But go easy! This one’s for the newbies!
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If you still don’t feel comfortable taking your camera off the auto setting, tell us why! Maybe someone can answer a question you might have.
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Thank you to Canon for this wonderful partnership. We’ve really enjoyed chatting with our readers about what’s behind the lens!
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SHUTTER BUG

Like many Instagram worshipers, you’ll find us glued to our feeds whenever we catch a free moment. But, when it comes to the heart of our jobs — a.k.a. those gorg tutorials and how-tos, we’re often questioned about which camera we use. You’re most likely to find us behind  lens of a Canon 5D. Sure, you’ll find more filters on an iPhone than drink options at Starbucks, but no smartphone will ever deliver the same detail as an SLR camera. Whether we’re capturing a close-up on some nail art or documenting a certain hair texture (as seen in the photo  below), our Canon never leaves our side. We’re so smitten with quality, we’ve had zero qualms with leaving behind our touchscreens when it’s time to seek out inspiration for upcoming TBD posts. As evidenced by our office’s mood board, toting around pro equipment is essential for capturing vibrant colors and crisp images — now we know how photographers felt before cell phones were equipped with lenses!

photos: Kristin Ess, written by Sarah St. Lifer

Not only does our day-to-day life influence our work, but so do the iconic muses of yore. You know what we’re talking about: those gasp-worthy portraits of Bianca Jagger dancing at Studio 54, Jackie O. dodging the paparazzi, or Sophia Loren being a bona fide bombshell at the beach. You could say we’re constantly borrowing from the old-school icons, while staying on top of today’s trends. Without the trusty trigger of our Canon along with some old school vintage photographs, our day-to-day might be a little less inspiring.

Confession: A bunch of those brilliantly-lit photos we publish on TBD were taken at night. Did we fool you? Well, blame it on the Canon 5D. Since our days are often booked with back-to-back meetings, the only availability we have for tutorials is when the sun starts to set (What can we say? We’re a dedicated bunch!). Even in low light situations, you can still achieve that clear and bright shot, sans a vibrant light source. Added bonus: You can rock that fancy ‘do to dinner! Magic!

When it comes to social media, we’re all about natural light. But, while shooting outdoors, we’ll sometimes encounter direct L.A. sunlight. Way harsh, Tai!  In order to make those snaps as perfect as a Noxzema commercial, we bust out our trusty Canon (can you tell we’re a Clueless-obsessed crew?). Trust, we’re still learning the camera’s many settings! But, just switching the tab from portrait mode to landscape helped us achieve that softer light we were searching for. (If only choosing a nail polish shade were that simple!)

The trickiest tutorials to capture? Probably nail art. Those features are all about the details, and it would be an injustice to those dazzling digits if we photographed them with anything less than a pro lens. Whether we’re zooming in on some glitter or photographing the end result, the Canon takes care of business. Sweet dreams are made of this!

What’s the point in preparing a magazine-worthy photo shoot when the camera quality isn’t up to par? We want our readers to enjoy every minute detail, down to the petals on some pretty peonies! Textures tend to be much more dynamic, and you can’t argue with the color quality. Wowza!

Even the everyday items in our studio look like little pieces of art when we snap ‘em with our Canon. Hair and makeup tools never let us down, so capturing them in a flattering way is the least we could do!

sponsored by Canon

Even off duty, we can’t help but bust out our “big girl camera”. Whether we’re on a hike, BBQ’ing by the beach, or braiding each other’s hair in the park (seems cliché but we do it!), the camera goes where we go! Check out our Graphic Design Assistant getting her hair done by one of our writers! Those out-of-office moments are just as important to us as the how-to’s. We couldn’t do it without our 5D, a.k.a. our secret weapon.

Do you own a Canon SLR? Are you planning on investing in one for your blog? If so, what model? Tell us about it in the comments below!