Category: Behind The Scenes

What is Aperture?

What is aperture? Aperture is easy to understand if you stick to photography basics. It is the amount of light being admitted through the lens as you capture your subject. How can you tell how much light that is? In the example image, the aperture, also known as the f-stop, is the number 4.5 (F4.5). Adjusting the aperture allows you to get creative. Think of a crisp, focused image (foreground and background), compared to a focused foreground subject but with a blurred-out background. Using an aperture of f/4.5 compared to f/16 will create the blurred background effect. Dialing in f/16 gives...

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Introduction to Shutter Speed

What is shutter speed? Shutter speed is the amount of time your camera takes to capture your subject. Yes, it is as simple as that when you stick to photography basics.How can you tell how long that is?In the example image, my shutter speed is revealed by the number 90. Ninety by itself may not appear to give you enough information; instead, consider it a fraction. Therefore, the shutter speed is actually 1/90 of a second.Depending on the camera model you have, your shutter speed may already display as a fraction.If you were to compare a crisp action sports photo to a feathery-looking waterfall,...

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The High Trail

The High Trail In my early days of photography, I braced against adding the “human element” to landscape photos. The fact I learned about this from professional photographers made no difference. Eventually, I pondered the idea, decided to experiment, and see where it went. In the three examples, we could agree there is the human element, of some kind. Also, the human element does not necessarily need to be big and bold, although it can be. Keeping it as simple as a foot or a bench may be enough to create something slightly different, and an element of scale even. Now could be the...

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The Moon

The Moon Photographing the moon tends to challenge and confuse aspiring photographers. Images are often overexposed, revealing a bright white blob in the sky. If this sounds like you think of the moon this way – it is a big bright light. Therefore, the camera needs to treat it as such if you use the auto setting. You need to think of it this way if you use the manual setting. Do not let the darkness of the night fool you. Remember that your subject is the moon and it is bright. The examples tell us that the camera recognizes the brightness of the moon in the night sky. If you are still learning...

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Hoar Frost

Hoar Frost As photographers, one of the challenges is whether we will stop long enough to take photographs. Of course, we plan to and assure ourselves that we will, but sometimes we say to ourselves, “next time.” Have you noticed how next time does not wait for us? The situation varies, the lighting changes, it is inconvenient, what will people think, and those precious moments slip past the camera tucked away in the bag, making us a wee bit nostalgic. That almost happened with these hoar frost images on the kitchen window. The reason it did not is that I decided to act instead...

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Mule Deer Fawns

Mule Deer Fawns I barely believed my luck when this scene unfolded in plain view! What a vacation, relaxing, breathing fresh mountain air surrounded by nature and wildlife. Camping offers many benefits, and two of my favourites are enjoying wildlife in their natural surroundings and taking photos. Mule deer frequented this area, and what a joy to watch the adults going about their day. Aware of calving season, this always meant being on the lookout, staying a respectful distance away as both visitors and wildlife share the park. On this day, I wasn’t thinking about a photo opportunity....

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Tangle Creek Falls

Tangle Creek Falls Nature is stunning in Jasper National Park, and the drive towards the Columbia Icefields from Jasper is exceptional for photography. The landforms and history of the region have always intrigued me. My attraction to Tangle Creek Falls began a few years before when I took the time to play by the waterfall with my camera. While reading the book A Hunter of Peace recounting Mary Schaffer’s expedition to Maligne Lake in 1911, I was captivated. Her journey on horseback covered many miles, including emerging from the dense forest at Tangle Creek Falls. Moving water provides...

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Wasp and the Grape

The Wasp & the Grape “Shoo, get away, lookout, a wasp, is buzzing around!” In the flash of a second, I transformed from peacefully soaking up the summer rays of sunshine to the frenzy of scrambling out of my chair as a wasp dive-bombed my delicious snack of grapes. Dashing to the safety of my house, I slammed the door shut, and at that moment, a flash of insight hit me. “Use the opportunity for a photo-shoot; the wasp is after the grape, not me.” Hmmm, okay! I wasn’t about to charge out there and agitate the wasp, so I came up with a plan. As with all photography,...

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