A Perfect December Day

December 21st, 2010

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A perfect December day consists of a visit to a friend’s house . . .

mia mantel

 

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Better Brighter Blog Photos

December 20th, 2010

Greetings!  I hope you all had a good weekend.  We had a great party despite the huge storm that is pounding California, and a splendid time was had by all.  Today I thought I’d address a question I keep getting via email and in comments:  “How do I take better, brighter photos for my blog?”  I do not consider myself an expert in photography by any means so I wonder sometimes why that question is even directed at me.  However, I have taught myself a few tricks for achieving higher quality images in the past year, and every now and then I take a pretty good shot.

The most important thing I have learned to make for a better brighter photo has everything to do with light.  And a good camera.  When taking photographs, either for your personal use or for your blog, good natural light and a kick booty camera are your two very best friends. 

Most photographs taken outside on a sunny day with a point-and-shoot turn out pretty well, all because of the natural light present.  Yet with interior shots, it’s tough to be as blessed with natural light unless you’re shooting a room with walls of windows on a sunny day.   When shooting pictures indoors in less than ideal conditions, here are a five tips I shoot by.   

My Five Tips for Better Brighter Blog Photos

1) Use a Good Camera

I think it’s essential to invest in a good SLR digital camera with variable settings (F-stop, shutter speed, ISO sensitivity, white balance, etc.) if you want to have high quality interior photos.  I know there are a lot of comparatively inexpensive point and shoot digital cameras out there, and they are perfectly fine for so many everyday uses, but for high quality blog photography, invest in a good camera.  I use my Nikon D60 that allows for changeable lenses, and I use two kinds of lenses that I mention in my FAQ page

2)  Know Your Manual 

When my hub bought me my Nikon D60 three years ago, I always used the auto setting just because it was so darn easy and I was, at first, intimidated by the manual settings.  80% of the time, the ‘Auto’ setting worked fine and produced adequate images. 

However, the ability to manipulate your camera’s light settings makes all the difference in the world in less than perfect light conditions, and when shooting interiors or detail shots.  Here is just one half of one page in my Nikon’s manual but look how much information can be gathered from this quick camera tour.   

nikon image settings

 

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Get Organized GIVEAWAY

December 17th, 2010

Greetings and happy weekend!  How are you?  I do hope you’re enjoying this holiday season!  I’ve been running around doing all sorts of holiday related things, but the one thing I’ve been neglecting is my dreaded paperwork!  I’m pretty good at staying organized most of the time, but paperwork is my weakness.  I cannot be alone in the ‘paperwork piling up everywhere’ scenario, but I can tell you, I’m looking forward to that down time after Christmas to sort that daunting pile.     

Being organized helps me get more done, and devote more time to my family and I’m made serious efforts this year to make it so!  It helps me think clearly, remain focused, and always saves time.  Don’t you find that to be true?  I have adopted some strategies from my sponsor Simplify 101 which truly help.  Have you visited their site?   The founder Aby Garvey is an organizing and productivity expert!  I love her motto, “More Fun, More Done”.  Having an organized home is one way to make more time to be creative too.

my home ideasSource

Just in time for the upcoming New Year, I have an exciting giveaway for you!  January is organizing month, so Simplify 101 is offering three winners their choice of any of their four upcoming workshops

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