FAQ-News

In response to the many questions (both online and off) that I’ve been asked, I’ve decided to dedicate a separate page for Questions and Answers.

What settings did you use for those blurred background?
Referring to:

What you’ve seen is a “Bokeh”. In short its a technique to bring your subject of interest into focus, while leaving the rest of the image out-of-focus. As mentioned this serves to highlight the subject you want to capture and emphasize to the viewer.

How I did it was very simple. I dialed in a big aperture and shoot my subject. See example: the photo was taken with an aperture of f2.8, as you can see the colored pens at the rear, are blurred. Out of focus. In turn, this serves to highlight the black color pen to the viewer.

f2_8.jpg

Later on I took a picture with the aperture set at f10. As you can see, the rest of the pens in the back are more focused.

f10_0.jpg

Bokeh is a very simple and beautiful way to enhance your photos. Remember this, the smaller your len’s f-number is, the more out of focus the other areas will be going. If you want to bring the subject and its background into focus. you should try a larger f-number, meaning its a smaller aperture size.

As I will not touch on the details of how a “Bokeh” is formed, here are the links to websites I’ve found to useful and full of tiny details of how a “Bokeh” works.

Further details:

http://www.kenrockwell.com/tech/bokeh.htm

http://www.luminous-landscape.com/columns/sm-04-04-04.shtml


How did you make the “flare” image in your mosque clock tower photo?

Referring to:
chimes.jpg
This shot was really a “right place, right time” kind. I was passing by the clock tower, and this glare caught my eye. Out of curiosity I point my camera at the glare and viola, I saw this beautiful flare. I had to adjust my polarising filter a few degrees to get it to flare the way I wanted it.


What websites and sources have you found really helpful?
How I wish I can say there is a single master website / source that I learned from…that would make life alot easier. I had to reply this in sections. Photography covers a very wide scope, when I started (it all begin as a desire and the “eye”), I read technical information from websites like:

http://www.dpreview.com/
http://www.clubsnap.com/
http://www.fredmiranda.com/
http://www.kenrockwell.com/

All these website provided the basic information towards my purchase of the Canon 350D. What follows is a passionate pursuit to learn about the the art and techniques of making great photos. I remember a few websites I came across:

http://www.betterphoto.com/exploring/tips.asp
http://www.dg28.com/technique/index.htm

To name a few. I be honest and say that more than half the time, I picked up a book/magazine from the library and study it.

Its not enough to know your equipment, I realised I need to practise and practise my photo techniques more and more. To achieve this end, I would study photos from photo greats like Ansel Adams, David Muench, Henri Cartier-Bresson. More close to heart I would seriously recommend:

Steve McCurryfor his Afghan Girl photo captivated me way before I fell in love with photography
Kenneth Wong

Direction, guidance, encouragement, professional critique (not just any), these are things that I need to get better each time. I’m always glad for friends like Jan Shim who I got to know very well through a series of events. His contribution has really been of great help to me. If you have read my interview with him, you will realise his impact on my photography.

Final note, photography is something we cannot say “I have arrived”. As with many other things in life, there is always more to learn.

cont… (as I’m still compiling the other questions, do check back soon)

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