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Photography for Beginners | Learn the Basics of Photography

Are you a beginner photographer who wants to learn how to improve your photography? This is the perfect photography podcast for you. You'll learn how to expose with your camera - using the aperture, shutter speed, and ISO settings. You'll learn about composition, and what it takes to compose a better image using photography rules of thumb, as well as knowing how to break those rules. Finally, you'll learn how to tell stories with your photos. This podcast is hosted by photographers & instructors Phil Ebiner, William Carnahan and Sam Shimizu-Jones.

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12 Series Conclusion & Thank You

We truly hope you've enjoyed this podcast series. Our goal was to help beginners understand the most basic concepts a new photographer needs to know to improve their photography.  We'll continue adding episodes to the podcast based off the most Frequently Asked Questions we receive from the students and members of our photography community.  Thanks so much for listening! If you want to take your photo skills even further, head over to PhotographyandFriends.com for free tutorials, premium courses, one-on-one coaching, and the friendliest photography community online.

4mins

3 Jun 2021

Rank #1

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11 Why Story Matters for Your Photography

In this episode, we conclude the first series of episodes about the basics of photography by chatting about storytelling with photography. At the end of the day, we are telling stories with our photos. What makes a great photo? A lot of this lies in the eyes of the beholder. Though there are different styles of photography and situations where story elements can be captured in better ways.  We hope you enjoy our conversation! About this podcast: Are you a beginner photographer who wants to learn how to improve your photography? This is the perfect photography podcast for you. In this podcast series, you'll learn how to expose with your camera - using the aperture, shutter speed, and ISO settings. You'll learn about composition, and what it takes to compose a better image using photography rules of thumb, as well as knowing how to break those rules. And finally, you'll learn how to tell stories with your photos. If you want to take your photo skills even further, head over to PhotographyandFriends.com for free tutorials, premium courses, one-on-one coaching, and the friendliest photography community online.

14mins

3 Jun 2021

Rank #2

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10 Lighting and Color in Photography

In this episode, you'll learn all about light and color. We'll cover the light spectrum, light temperature, and how different types of light can change your photos. We'll also discuss how certain colors and color combinations make for better photography. Learn more about white balance, light and color here: https://photographyandfriends.com/understanding-white-balance/ About this podcast: Are you a beginner photographer who wants to learn how to improve your photography? This is the perfect photography podcast for you. In this podcast series, you'll learn how to expose with your camera - using the aperture, shutter speed, and ISO settings. You'll learn about composition, and what it takes to compose a better image using photography rules of thumb, as well as knowing how to break those rules. And finally, you'll learn how to tell stories with your photos. If you want to take your photo skills even further, head over to PhotographyandFriends.com for free tutorials, premium courses, one-on-one coaching, and the friendliest photography community online.

27mins

3 Jun 2021

Rank #3

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9 Focus, Depth of Field and Bokeh

In this episode, you’ll learn all about focus, depth of field and bokeh. These concepts kind of go hand in hand and can truly change the quality of your photos. You will learn that it is not just about what is in focus or even the fact that is sharply in focus but also how it is in focus and what is not in focus. What Exactly is Depth of Field? Simply put, it’s the distance between the closest and farthest objects in a photo that look sharp. Cameras can only focus very sharply at one point, but the transition from sharp to blurred is a gradual one. Don’t make the mistake of trying to get your images super-sharp and thinking that anything less is no good – there are many different definitions of acceptable sharpness, and they depend on different factors such as the size you are viewing the image at, what you are viewing it on, and it’s got something to do with what’s called the ‘circle of confusion’ – I’m not going to even attempt to explain that one to you, – it’s yet more maths and science, and I think it’s aptly named! Bokeh One other thing that’s worth a mention while we’re on the subject of DoF is ‘bokeh.’ Bokeh is a Japanese word that is used to describe the aesthetic or pleasing quality of the blur in shallow DoF images. Not all lenses produce the same ‘look’ to the blur in shallow DoF images. The lens determines the shape and size of the bokeh, which is affected by the shape of the diaphragm blades (the aperture) of the lens. Lenses with rounder blades will have more circular, softer orbs in the blur than those with more hexagonal blades. There are actually whole forums and websites dedicated to bokeh and whether a particular lens produces ‘ugly’ or ‘good’ bokeh! Learn more and watch video tutorials here: https://photographyandfriends.com/what-is-depth-of-field/ About this podcast: Are you a beginner photographer who wants to learn how to improve your photography? This is the perfect photography podcast for you. In this podcast series, you'll learn how to expose with your camera - using the aperture, shutter speed, and ISO settings. You'll learn about composition, and what it takes to compose a better image using photography rules of thumb, as well as knowing how to break those rules. And finally, you'll learn how to tell stories with your photos. If you want to take your photo skills even further, head over to PhotographyandFriends.com for free tutorials, premium courses, one-on-one coaching, and the friendliest photography community online.

15mins

3 Jun 2021

Rank #4

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8 Common Photography Composition Rules and Tips

In this episode, you'll learn several of the most popular compositional rules (which are meant to be broken) such as the rule of thirds, leading lines, negative space, balance & symmetry, and more.  Watch tutorials and read more about composition here: https://photographyandfriends.com/what-is-composition/ About this podcast: Are you a beginner photographer who wants to learn how to improve your photography? This is the perfect photography podcast for you. In this podcast series, you'll learn how to expose with your camera - using the aperture, shutter speed, and ISO settings. You'll learn about composition, and what it takes to compose a better image using photography rules of thumb, as well as knowing how to break those rules. And finally, you'll learn how to tell stories with your photos. If you want to take your photo skills even further, head over to PhotographyandFriends.com for free tutorials, premium courses, one-on-one coaching, and the friendliest photography community online.

23mins

3 Jun 2021

Rank #5

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7 What is Composition?

In this episode, you’ll learn what composition is. When we choose our subject we are choosing to capture a thing, a person, a sky, anything because it means something to us. Composition is deeply personal, almost as personal as editing style because we view the world based on our own experiences. Whether you want your photograph to simply document, to convey emotion, or just to capture something “pretty,” there are many ways that photography is more than a happy accident of being in the right place at the right time. Defining Composition Composition is probably the easiest part about photography because it’s simply finding something you want to take pictures of. Every time you make the decision to take a photograph you choose what to include and what to focus on. Composition can be conscious, where you arrange and remove things to add to the aesthetic of the image; or it can be subconscious, where your focus was only on the subject at the time and the whole scene is your composition. While it’s easy to understand, it’s not necessarily easy to implement. What the eye sees as being “perfect,” the camera may reveal differently. The arrangement of objects and elements can bring together more than one item, or it can make everything else meaningless save for the focus of the image. A successful composition is one that evokes feeling or meaning to the viewer, not just one that looks good. Understand that your composition will change depending on the lens you are using. Watch a video tutorial and read more about composition here: https://photographyandfriends.com/what-is-composition/ About this podcast: Are you a beginner photographer who wants to learn how to improve your photography? This is the perfect photography podcast for you. In this podcast series, you'll learn how to expose with your camera - using the aperture, shutter speed, and ISO settings. You'll learn about composition, and what it takes to compose a better image using photography rules of thumb, as well as knowing how to break those rules. And finally, you'll learn how to tell stories with your photos. If you want to take your photo skills even further, head over to PhotographyandFriends.com for free tutorials, premium courses, one-on-one coaching, and the friendliest photography community online.

8mins

3 Jun 2021

Rank #6

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6 The Exposure Triangle - Exposure in the Real World

In the last few episodes, we discussed aperture, ISO and shutter speed as separate things, but I also mentioned that they must work together to create a properly exposed image. This may sound quite daunting, but I shall try to explain it in terms that are easy to visualize. It’s essential that you learn it, though. Once you understand how the three cornerstones of the triangle work together, you can start getting artistic with your images, and bending the rules. The Exposure Triangle Put simply, aperture, ISO and shutter speed make up the three sides of the triangle. These three work together to control the amount of light you need to create a properly exposed photograph. If one of these three sides of the triangle changes, (if you need to change your aperture, for instance) one or both of the others must also change to keep your exposure correct. Read more about the exposure triangle here: https://photographyandfriends.com/what-is-the-exposure-triangle/ About this podcast: Are you a beginner photographer who wants to learn how to improve your photography? This is the perfect photography podcast for you. In this podcast series, you'll learn how to expose with your camera - using the aperture, shutter speed, and ISO settings. You'll learn about composition, and what it takes to compose a better image using photography rules of thumb, as well as knowing how to break those rules. And finally, you'll learn how to tell stories with your photos. If you want to take your photo skills even further, head over to PhotographyandFriends.com for free tutorials, premium courses, one-on-one coaching, and the friendliest photography community online.

24mins

3 Jun 2021

Rank #7

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5 What is ISO?

The last two episodes concentrated on aperture and shutter speed. This time we’re going to look at ISO and how this connects with the other two. What is ISO? Basically, ISO is a measurement of how sensitive your camera is to the available light. The lower the ISO number on your camera, the less sensitive it is, while the higher you go with the ISO numbers, the more sensitive it is. When you increase your ISO above a certain level, you can get more light in low light conditions, but that increase in light comes with a trade-off in terms of picture quality.  The higher the ISO, the more digital noise or grain becomes apparent in your images. Noise literally looks like small grains all over your image. You can see an example of this below. This image was taken at high ISO, and if you look closely, you can see tiny specks all over the image, but it’s especially noticeable in the sky areas. Watch a video and read more about ISO here: https://photographyandfriends.com/what-is-iso/ About this podcast: Are you a beginner photographer who wants to learn how to improve your photography? This is the perfect photography podcast for you. In this podcast series, you'll learn how to expose with your camera - using the aperture, shutter speed, and ISO settings. You'll learn about composition, and what it takes to compose a better image using photography rules of thumb, as well as knowing how to break those rules. And finally, you'll learn how to tell stories with your photos. If you want to take your photo skills even further, head over to PhotographyandFriends.com for free tutorials, premium courses, one-on-one coaching, and the friendliest photography community online.

12mins

3 Jun 2021

Rank #8

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4 What is Shutter Speed?

We looked at aperture last episode, in this one we’re going to look at how shutter speed affects your image. Think of the shutter as a curtain that opens and closes to let light hit your camera’s sensor. Shutter speed is quite simply how fast that curtain opens and closes, thereby controlling how much light is let into the camera. It can create dramatic effects by blurring motion and freezing it, and is also important in gaining correct exposure. The first step in using shutter speed to shape your images is to understand how it works. Watch a video and learn more about shutter speed here: https://photographyandfriends.com/what-is-shutter-speed/ How Shutter Speed Affects Your Images Shutter speed means the length of time your camera shutter is open to let light in to your camera sensor. It’s measured in fractions of seconds right up to minutes. A fast shutter speed can freeze motion – think of birds in flight, or athletes caught in a moment of action – and a slow one will give a motion blur to anything moving. Think of those images of waterfalls where the water is white and silky-smooth, or an image shot from a moving vehicle. If you are shooting at night or in low light, you’ll need to use a slow shutter speed – the shutter will stay open longer to allow as much light as possible in to the sensor, so you don’t end up with an underexposed photograph. You’ll probably need to use a tripod at shutter speeds of less than 1/60th of a second or your image will become blurred through camera shake– in my case, I know from experience that I cannot hand-hold my camera at anything less than 1/100th second because it’s simply impossible to keep it perfectly still for any longer than that. With practice, you will come to know what your own limit for hand-holding your camera is. If you are shooting on a bright, sunny day, you’ll need to use a high shutter speed so as not to over-expose your image. The shutter will open and close extremely quickly to limit the amount of light hitting the sensor. A fast shutter speed is generally anything above 1/250th of a second, and should freeze movement, and a slow shutter speed is generally anything under 1/30th of a second, and will blur anything moving even slightly. About this podcast: Are you a beginner photographer who wants to learn how to improve your photography? This is the perfect photography podcast for you. In this podcast series, you'll learn how to expose with your camera - using the aperture, shutter speed, and ISO settings. You'll learn about composition, and what it takes to compose a better image using photography rules of thumb, as well as knowing how to break those rules. And finally, you'll learn how to tell stories with your photos. If you want to take your photo skills even further, head over to PhotographyandFriends.com for free tutorials, premium courses, one-on-one coaching, and the friendliest photography community online.

13mins

3 Jun 2021

Rank #9

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3 What is Aperture?

The holy trinity of photography is aperture, shutter speed and ISO. The three work together to create your images, and all three control how much light the lens lets in to the camera. Today we’re going to discuss aperture – how to understand it, and how to use it to enhance your photography. Put simply, aperture is the most visual of the three basic pillars. It can produce wonderfully blurred backgrounds, with only the main subject of your image in focus, or it can bring everything into focus from the nearest tree to the furthest hill in the same image. Aperture is actually the size of the hole within your lens, which lets light into your camera. The larger the aperture, the more light you let into your camera, and vice versa. Watch a video tutorial about aperture and read more here: https://photographyandfriends.com/how-does-aperture-work/ The Confusing Relationship Between f-stops and Aperture Does the explanation of what aperture is sound simple? It is – but where it can get confusing is when you apply f-stops to the different sizes of aperture. An f-stop, also known as an f-number, is a method of describing the size of the aperture, and the misunderstanding can arise because a smaller f-stop number means a larger aperture, hence more light getting into the camera. A larger f-stop means a smaller aperture, meaning less light getting into the camera. Most people are used to larger numbers representing more of the same thing, but in aperture and f-stops that’s not the case. If you consider that f/1.8 is larger than f/4, and much bigger than f/8, it’s easy to see the potential for confusion. Depth of Field: What it is, and How You Can Use it to Create Impact Depth of field is basically using your aperture to control how much of the shot is in focus. The size of the aperture has a direct relationship to how much or little of your image appears sharp. For instance, a large f-stop such as f/22 (which lets less light in than a lower f-stop) will give you an image with all the foreground and background in focus. Most landscape images are shot with a higher f-stop. A small f-stop such as f/1.8, on the other hand, will isolate your subject from the background and blur everything that is not on that plane of focus. Think of close-up portraits where only the eyes are tack-sharp, and everything else gradually falls off into softness. We hope this episode teaches you how to understand aperture yourself.  About this podcast:  Are you a beginner photographer who wants to learn how to improve your photography? This is the perfect photography podcast for you. In this podcast series, you'll learn how to expose with your camera - using the aperture, shutter speed, and ISO settings. You'll learn about composition, and what it takes to compose a better image using photography rules of thumb, as well as knowing how to break those rules. And finally, you'll learn how to tell stories with your photos. If you want to take your photo skills even further, head over to PhotographyandFriends.com for free tutorials, premium courses, one-on-one coaching, and the friendliest photography community online.

18mins

10 May 2021

Rank #10