travel & recreation
select it via a scene mode). DSLR users can use special macro lenses, which are made for close-up photography, as well as inexpensive yet high-quality close-up diopter lenses (they screw onto the threads of the lens, just like a protective filter). The key to good close-ups is keeping the camera and subject still; a tripod or even a beanbag or pillow placed on a sturdy surface can work. In many cases, you can also zoom in to capture close-up details—as long as the camera can keep the image in focus, you’re good to go. Another tip is to add a clear filter (often called a sky filter) to your camera’s front filter thread and apply petroleum jelly or a similar product very lightly to create a painterly and reamy look, as seen in the flower photo (below center). To clean the filter after use, just rinse it with water under a faucet while rubbing it with a very smooth cloth (a 100 percent cotton T-shirt or similar fabric cloth works well). Then wipe it dry with a clean, smooth cloth.
By Andrew Darlow HAVING SEEN SO MANY inspiring pho- tographs over the years in The Costco Connection’s annual photo contest, I know many talented shutterbugs are out there. Whether you are one of them or aspire to be, the following tips are meant to help you better capture all of summer’s sights and activities—no matter if it’s with a fancy digi- tal SLR (DSLR) camera, a point-and-shoot or even a camera phone.
Capturing the best
shot takes focus
can occur when shadows are cast under the
eyes because the sun is high in the sky. “Fill
flash” describes the use of flash to fill in
underexposed areas. It can be enabled in several ways: by using the small flash found on
many point-and-shoot cameras; by using a
camera’s pop-up flash; with a detachable flash
unit (e.g., Speedlites, made by Canon, or
Speedlights, made by Nikon); or with an off-camera flash unit.
The icon used by most point-and-shoot
cameras to turn on fill flash is a lightning
bolt—press the flash button until the lightning bolt stays on. Also, fill flash can add
“catch lights” to your subjects’ eyes, adding
sparkle, and illuminate features in a way similar to how pros light models for magazine
covers. At night, most cameras automatically
fire the flash, but to record some of the background nicely, use the “Night Portrait” mode
if your camera has that option.
Change your perspective
If you get very close and really low to the
ground, you can create very different (and
often very dramatic) looks. I took this photo o i h
Zoom in on creativity
Whether your camera has a built-in
zoom lens or an interchangeable one , the way
you use the zoom can make for much more
interesting images. To start, consider taking
photos of a subject at different zoom levels.
The differences in framing and impact can be
amazing. Also, try zooming in to photograph
people, instead of using the default wide-angle settings. To do that, just zoom in a bit
(for more advanced users, aim for about 80
mm in 35 mm film terms) and, if necessary,
move back a few feet. You should notice that
people’s features (especially faces) will appear
less distorted in your photos and more like
the way you see them with your eyes from a
few feet away.
Flash in the daytime
Electronic flash has many uses for pictures taken outdoors. For starters, flash can
reduce or eliminate “raccoon eyes,” a look that
Up close and personal
Close-up photography opens up so many
opportunities for creative photographs. Many
compact cameras have a “Macro” mode (look
for the icon of a flower on one of the dials, or
The Costco Connection
Costco and Costco.com offer compact
and DSLR cameras and accessories plus
a variety of printing options at 1-Hour
Photo or online at Costco.com.
MAY 2010 ;e Costco Connection 61
of the Eiffel Tower just after midnight, and I
had to lie on the ground to capture the image.
This technique can also be used when photographing your friends or family. Just lie on
your back, aim your camera up and ask everyone to carefully huddle around you.
Increase your exposure
Long-exposure photography can create
spectacular results. On compact cameras without “Manual” modes, you can try using the
“Night Scene” mode or “Fireworks” mode—
both should make the shutter speed longer
PHOTOS BY ANDREW DARLOW PHOTOGRAPHY