How to Recover Deleted Pictures from SD Card

So you have accidentally deleted photos from your memory card and are now looking for a way to recover them? Rest assured, there are plenty of ways to do without having to stress out over how time-consuming this might be. Read our article on how to recover deleted pictures from SD card for simple, applicable tips on how to do get back those cherished immortalized memories.

  1. How To Recover Deleted Pictures from SD Card with Data Recovery Pro

Contrary to popular belief, even though you accidentally delete photos from an SD Card, they aren’t permanently deleted. They still exist on the lower levels of your SD drive. Unfortunately however, Windows cannot find these on its own so it needs a third-party software to locate the photos.

how to recover deleted pictures from sd card

Even if your photos are located in the lower levels of your SD drive, they can be overwritten at any time, because Windows is not protected anymore. So if you are trying to recover this data it is important to act quickly. Here’s what you should do:

  • Go the recovering-deleted-files.net.
  • Then click on the Free Download button for the software program called Data Recovery Pro.
  • After installing the software, open it and you will have a series of options to choose. Then press the Guided Scan button and if you are looking to recover deleted files from external sources such as an SD card continue by selecting the I want to recover items on an external device.
  • Afterwards you will be presented with a table containing the deleted data and by simply selecting it and pressing the Recovery button an automated folder will be made containing the deleted photos.

how to recover deleted pictures from sd card with data recovery pro

Keep in mind that this solution implies having to download a software program, yet it offers a safe and fast way to bring back lost data.

  1. How to Recover Deleted Photos from Memory Card with Recuva Professional

Another useful software for recovering deleted data files is Recuva Professional. These are the quick and simple steps to follow:

  • Simply go to Piriform.com/recuva and on the main page you will be presented with the option of downloading the program. After downloading the program make sure you install it.
  • Before opening the program you will be required to do a Quick Format on the SD card. I know it is really scary to Format the SD card, mainly because of the fear to lose all data. But by pressing Quick Format you only scrub the Table of Contents on the SD card, not erasing everything recorded on it.
  • Now you can go onto the next step by opening the Recuva program.
  • Then, in the Recuva Wizard, you will be asked what sort of files you are trying to recover. If you are looking to recover deleted photos select the Pictures button.
  • If you also have other files that need to be recovered then go ahead and select the Other option, although be wary that it takes a ridiculous amount of time to scan in this selected option.
  • After selecting Pictures you will be asked where you want your files to be recovered. Select the Specific Location option and continue by recovering the files in the Removable Disk or in other words the SD card reader.

how to recover deleted pictures from sd card with recuva

If you select the Deep Scan option you can find files which have been deleted for a long time. Keep in mind that SD cards do not know that you deleted files until new ones are rewritten on them. So you will get files that are most recent as well as old deleted files. If you select this option note that it is very time-consuming and it might take a couple of hours. However, you will be able to bring back very old deleted files, so the benefits might overshadow disadvantages.

After the scan is completed a window will appear. In it all the files that have been found on the lower layers of the SD card drive will come into sight. Because you can have a vast number of photos that have been brought up, both recent and very old, it might again be very time-consuming to select each one individually. Luckily, there is a ‘select all’ option and you can follow up by pressing the Recover button.

There you will have the option to choose where you would like your recovered files to be saved. Then the files will be copied from the card onto the folder in which you want these to be saved.

Depending on the number of files you have recovered and thus saved, this process might take a couple of minutes up to a few hours. So be prepared to clear your schedule and spend some time on it.

Hope this couple of tips on how to recover deleted pictures from SD card prove useful to you. Although it involves downloading and installing different programs the results pay off. Nevertheless, keep in mind that depending on the sheer number of photos that need to be recovered, the whole process might vary in time. In other words, expect to spend from a couple of minutes to a few hours, if the volume of deleted photos is that high. By using the Recuva program and its Deep Scan option, you can recover files lost a very long time ago. So, in this event you can rest assured that you will spend quite some time, if you wish to recover those old files.

In essence, these immortalized moments should better be recovered, as they bring us back joy while looking over them. If you are searching for more tips on how to organize your images and keep them safe, check out our post on best ways to import and store digital images on your computer, as well as on an external drive.

Thank you for reading our article on how to recover deleted photos from memory card and feel free to leave us a message in the comment section below if you have any tips or ideas to share on the topic. Cheers!

Image Sources: 1, 2, 3.

Aperture Settings and Techniques Part II

Now that you know what aperture is and how it works, let’s experiment with some aperture settings and basic photography techniques for popular niches. Whether you want to achieve a more intense, powerful portrait or a more in-focus flower photograph, we have prepared useful and simple guidelines for you to follow.

Aperture Settings and Photo Techniques for Expressive Portraits

In order to get expressive portraits, photographers usually focus on the subject creating a shallow depth of field. If you want to concentrate the attention on your model, and achieve a more diffused background, here’s what you need to do:

  • Set a wide aperture (a lower f number like f/1.4 or f/2.8).
  • Get close to your subject.
  • Focus on the subject’s eyes.

Out-of-focus backgrounds are ideal for portrait photography as they can add different moods and effects to the photo, changing the atmosphere. Now that you know how to do it, get your hands on the camera and have some fun experimenting.

 portrait achieved by using a wide aperture

Aperture Settings and Photo Techniques for Pet Photography

Photographing your pet is meant to be fun. Pet photography benefits from both shutter speed techniques if you want to capture your subject in motion, and from aperture techniques if you want to freeze a special expression.

You already know how to take a nice shot of your pet on a blurry background: set a lower f number (f/2) and don’t forget to focus on the eyes.

If you don’t have a pet and want to practice, find a place where you can find plenty of subjects like a park, a garden or a Zoo. Be careful what you get close to though!

Aperture Settings and Photo Techniques for Flower Shots

Flower photography also benefits from out-of-focus backgrounds. Here are some useful tips:

  • Choose a flower you want to focus on.
  • Set your camera on a wider aperture (f/4 should be fine).
  • Ensure the background can add a nice effect to the image. Go for either a nice bright sky, or for a beautiful green garden.

Here is an example of what you can get.

aperture photography technique for flower images

Aperture Settings and Photo Techniques for Beautiful Landscape Pictures

Small apertures (small f numbers) are preferred by photographers when it comes to landscape pictures. The reason why they choose smaller apertures like f/11 (higher f number) is the greater depth of field achieved. So both the foreground and background elements are in focus.

For a well-balanced composition and saturation, it is recommended to set your camera on a medium aperture. However, you are free to play with settings, and adjust all details along the process.

Aperture Settings and Photo Techniques for Travel Photography

Who doesn’t love traveling? Whether travel photography is one of your hobbies or even your job, there are so many details and moments you want to capture. The aperture photography techniques you can make use of when focusing on details imply an out-of-focus background and shallow depth of field. So you will need to choose a wider aperture (up to f/4).

If you choose to capture a broader scene, but also blurry distracting elements in the background, a wide aperture will do the job. The only thing to take into account is the distance to your subject.

Aperture Settings and Photo Techniques for Street Photography

Street photography, often overlapping with travel photography, can also benefit from wide apertures. Out-of-focus backgrounds can add a dramatic even artistic effect to your street photographs.

  • Choose a wider aperture to ensure a less depth of field.
  • Place your subject in the main focal point.

Aperture Settings and Photo Techniques for Abstract Photos

The most fun part, and also one of the most challenging, of experimenting with aperture photography techniques is that abstract touch you can add to your images.

  • Set your camera on a wider aperture (choose a low f number, but not the lowest like f/4).
  • Focus on a central element. This will result in a slightly out-of-focus, blurry background.

Here is what you can get:

Stair lights abstract photo

Medium apertures are ideal for shooting light trails. One of the major aspects to consider in this case is adjusting the shutter speed and ISO properly. Set a low ISO (ISO 200 should do the work), choose a shutter speed between 10 and 20 seconds along with a medium aperture of f/8.

Take a few shots and see how it goes. Experiment as much as you can and let us know how it went. We love it when our readers engage with our content and get inspired. So don’t hesitate to drop us a line if you have any thoughts and ideas you’d like to share with us and our community.

Image Sources: 1, 2, 3

Aperture Settings and Techniques Part I

One of the most important things in photography is having a strong knowledge of the basic techniques. That is why we have chosen to approach the use of aperture settings for various types of photographic results, from expressive portraits to beautiful landscape pictures. This post reflects the first part of our promise and focuses mainly on the meaning and importance of aperture techniques. The second part of this topic will show you how you can experiment with different aperture settings for different photography niches. Stay with us to learn more about choosing the aperture and using your digital camera to the fullest. First, let’s start with what aperture means in photography and how it can affect the quality of your pics.

What is Aperture in Photography?

Aperture refers to the opening of lenses which allows light pass through them and hit the camera sensor. The aperture settings are sequenced as f/stops and you will see them written as numbers like f/1.4, f/2.8, f/4, f/5.6 and so on. The way we refer to aperture might be a bit confusing as a lower f/stop or f/number stands for a wider aperture. In other words, the lowest the f number is, the wider the exposure. For instance, if you set an aperture of f/1.4, the opening of lenses is bigger and more light is allowed to pass through them.

To put it simple, a lower f/ number means a wider aperture, while a higher f/ number stands for a smaller aperture.

useful aperture scale for aperture photography techniques

Once you get to experiment with different settings, everything will look less contradictory.  We recommend using your digital camera in Manual Mode. As we have already brought up in our articles on ISO settings and shutter speed photography techniques, these aspects greatly influence one another. For this reason, it is essential to adjust all three settings according to their value.

How Does Aperture Affect the Quality of Your Images?

Not only that aperture is strongly connected to the way shutter speed and ISO work, but is also affects a few particular aspects of your images’ sharpness. The first thing to mention here is the depth of field. The depth of field (DOF) practically refers to how sharp both the foreground and background elements are reflected in your photo. Here is how aperture photography techniques and depth of filed are linked:

  • A greater depth of field means a sharper background or a background in focus. This implies a smaller opening of the lenses, so a higher aperture number.

Note: bigger f numbers provide the photo with a bigger depth of filed which translates into a smaller aperture.

  • Conversely, a shallow depth of field implies a wider aperture (lower f number) and a blurrier background.

Note: small f numbers provide the image with a small depth of field which translates into a wider aperture.

To resume:

  • f/2.8 translates into a large aperture and a shallow DOF.
  • f/8 stands for a medium aperture and a medium DOF.
  • f/22 means a small aperture and a great DOF.

As regards the time of exposure (shutter speed), if your aperture is wider and more light passes through the lenses, a faster shutter speed is needed. For the other way around, when using a smaller aperture, the shutter speed needs to be slower.

There are other factors that influence the way you use the aperture like focus length, type of lenses and the distance between your camera and your subject.

photographic lenses aperture

Let’s assume you want to take a close-up photo of a flower, by focusing only on the subject. Instead of using your zoom lenses and set a higher aperture number, it is desirable to get closer to your model and choose a slightly lower f number. Otherwise you will have to deal with photo aberrations and unwanted effects like vignetting. Getting closer to your subject instead of using the zoom lenses will result in a better exposed picture.

How to Set the Aperture?

There is always an easier way to deal with things. As regards aperture settings and techniques there’s Aperture Priority Mode you can use. Before setting your camera on Aperture Priority, though, you should be able to recognize the effects of different apertures on your images. The good part is that once you have chosen the aperture value for the results you wish to achieve, this camera function will adjust the shutter speed automatically.

Setting the aperture depends on what area of the photograph you want to have in focus. There are no specific rules on how exactly to choose the aperture, so it is a matter of choices and creativity. If, for instance, you want your subject to be in focus and achieve a blurrier background at the same time, you should choose a wider aperture – set a low f/ number. This way you will be in control of the depth of field. Make sure you don’t limit it too much though. Play with settings before you take the final shot. An aperture between f/1.4 and f/2, for example will result in an image with an out-of-focus background, while an aperture of f/22 will have both the subject and the background in focus.

Quick Aperture Tips:

  • Experiment with aperture settings in Manual Mode and learn how to adjust the shutter speed according to the f number.
  • Shoot in RAW format to avoid a reduction of the image’s saturation.
  • Don’t use zoom lenses too much.

Image Sources: 1, 2

Pet Photography Tips & Tricks

As fun as it may look like, pet photography can be a tough nut to crack. Apart from having the appropriate equipment and skill, it takes a bit more of patience and genuine care for your models. Don’t worry! We are here to provide you with special tips and ideas on how to create the best pet photo shooting atmosphere. Dealing with the technical side of the story is equally important, so make sure you stop our useful camera settings and tricks. Let’s get started!

Pet Photography Tips for a Relaxed Photo Shooting

Pets are like little kids. They need careful attention and a nice, clean environment. What we recommend is choose a location they like, either indoor or outdoor and photograph them in familiar environment. The context of your photo shooting is as important as your model. As long as you make sure your pet feels comfortable, you can achieve great results.

Treat to Trick!

One of the best tricks for a successful pet photo shooting is to treat your pet. Think of the rewards he enjoys the most and you cannot possibly go wrong with it. Not only that your dog will love you (if it’s a cat it will love you for a minute, maybe), but you will also take some great shots. You can use their favorite food or toys as props as well.

Have Some Fun!

Now that you have created a relaxed atmosphere you can have some fun! Whether you have a lazy cat, a playful dog or a noisy parrot, be creative and experiment with different props and accessories.

Here are some funny must-have pet photography props:

  • A Washing Machine (be careful with that!)

pet photography using a washing machine as a prop

  • A Small Boat (who would have thought boats are for cats?)

pet photography using a small boat as a prop

  • Books and Glasses (for a smart, hipsterish look)

pet photography using books and glasses as props

  • A Fashionable Scarf and Flowers (why not?)

fashionable scarf for pet photography

  • A Crown (of course!)

crown for pet photography

Technical Pet Photography Tips

Shoot in Natural Light

Shooting in natural light is essential for all photography niches. When it comes to photographing your pet, all you can ask for is a nice, bright yet diffused morning light. If you choose to shoot indoors, try to photograph your model as close to the window as possible.

I wouldn’t recommend to use the flash only if it is absolutely necessary. It can be very annoying for your pet and the results can be disastrous.

Best Lenses for Pet Photography

Wide angle lenses should be your first choice when photographing your pet. Don’t be surprised if by using wider angle lenses you will capture pet photographs with a twist. Play with different angles and perspectives for more imaginative shots. Either you photograph them from their eye level, from the above or from below, these kind of lenses will provide your pictures with a broader perspective and some interesting effects.

Close-up Portraits

The eyes of your pet can say more than thousands words (if only they could speak!). That is why some of the best pet photographs you can take are close-up portraits.

Whether you want them to be dramatic or hilarious, pet portraits are very expressive and eye-catching. You know what the best thing is with close-up pet portraits? There are no props needed.

Here’s what you should do in order to get sharp close-up photos of your pet

  • Use manual focus on your camera and make sure you highlight their eyes.
  • Focus on your model while creating a blurry effect for the background. Set a wide aperture (f/2.8 should do the job), get close to your pet and shoot!

Outdoor Pet Photography Tips

  • Photograph Your Pet in Motion

Want to capture your pet enjoying some time outdoors? Choose a fine, sunny day, set your digital camera to shutter speed priority mode and to continuous focus and see how it goes.

  • Freeze the Moment!

Pets can be very playful which makes pet photography even more challenging. That is why a good DSLR and some patience are priceless. Set your camera on shutter speed mode, or if you feel confident enough operate in manual mode by setting a fast shutter speed and adjusting the aperture accordingly. All you need to do is anticipate a great moment for your shot and capture some joy!

Image Sources: Pinterest

Using the Best Techniques for Shutter Speed Photography

Today’s post focuses on photography techniques that will help you use the shutter speed both effectively and creatively. We hope this article will provide you with inspiration for a new day of work.

Shutter Speed Photography Techniques

Before getting into detail and discussing more complex aspects of shutter speed photography, let’s go back to the basics and see what shutter speed is and why it is essential to know how to use it for high quality photos. Shutter speed refers to the length of time the camera’s shutter is open when capturing an image. Also called exposure time, the shutter speed is measured in fractions of a second and seconds. [Read more…]

How to Improve Your Landscape Photography

Landscape photography is indubitably one of the most popular sectors of photography. But from beautiful to stunning, jaw-dropping landscape images is a long run. Wonder how to shoot astonishing landscapes? Check out our tips and tricks addressed both to amateurs and professional photographers wishing to improve their skills in this area.

1. Useful Equipment for Landscape Photography

Apart from a good digital camera, you should also consider taking some lenses and a tripod with you. You don’t need to spend a fortune on your gear, but there are a few basic things to consider.

To keep it short, here are the tools you need in order to enhance your landscape shooting:

  • Angle lenses

High quality landscape photography requires using wide angle lenses. Lenses in the 24-70mm range should help you reveal a broader perspective. Also, as more light gets through your lenses, a faster exposure time can be set, which will result in sharper images.

  • Tripods

We know that sturdy tripods are hard to carry, but if you want to better control the composition of your shots, these are essential tools to have them handy. Tripods are extremely useful when it comes to shooting long exposed images, as well as panoramas, as they help you keep the camera steady and align the pieces perfectly.

2. Basic Rules of Photography

There are rules of composition that need to be respected, many professionals say. We totally agree, but there also rules that can be creatively broken. Let’s have a look at what you can and what you cannot do when it comes to breaking rules in photography.

  • Rule of Thirds

The ‘Rule of Thirds’ refers to the process of composing images. According to this rule, you need to mentally divide the image into thirds and decide how your subject will fill each third of your photo in order to achieve more tension and interest in the composition. Basically, according to the Rule of Thirds, you shouldn’t just center your subject.

rule of thirds in landscape photography

  • Symmetry

You can either create or break symmetry in your landscape pictures depending on the effect you want to achieve. Yes, symmetry rules can be successfully broken sometimes.

  • Framing

Framing is important for pleasing the eye. Use natural frames such as trees, holes or archways. This will help the viewer focus more on the central subject or dominant elements in your picture.

3. Best Photography Techniques for Landscape Pictures

 

  • Depth of Field Techniques

Create more depth in your landscape images by using a small aperture (from F10 to F22) and ISO (100, 200, depending on light conditions). Also, set a longer exposure time for a greater sense of depth.

depth of field Landscape photography

  • Shutter Speed Techniques

Learn how to use the shutter speed function of your camera for amazing long exposed landscape images. Long exposures are great for shooting waterfalls and rivers. If you want to capture a sense of movement, set your camera on Shutter Speed Priority Mode and choose a long exposure time, preferably exceeding 2 seconds. Don’t forget to use a tripod!

long-exposed water landscape photography

  • Post-processing Techniques

Post-processing is really important in achieving quality results, and, why not, mind-blowing effects. For more useful info on how to enhance your photos from the post-processing perspective, check out our post on Editing Tips and Tricks for Landscape Photography, ranging from how to blend raw exposures to adding a surreal touch or element.

4. Looking for Creative Ideas?

Many brilliant projects are born not only of experience, but of experimentation as well. That is why we encourage both hobbyists and pros to experiment and play with settings and techniques as much as possible. You never know when a genial trick or idea hits you. Here are a few creative ideas for stunning landscape shots.

  • Add a magical touch to your landscape pictures, by profiting from the golden hour. Check out our post on Useful Golden Hour Photography Tips as we have already discussed how these few minutes after sunshine or before sunset can enhance your landscape photographs.

golden hour landscape photography example

  • Create a story by shooting the same landscape in different periods of the year. Shoot a seasonal calendar if you have the chance to go back to your perfect location.

landscape photography through seasons

  • Make a time-lapse video. For more inspiration watch Dustin Farrell’s video composed with raw images taken with a Canon 5D2 DSLR and processed with Adobe software. These beautiful landscapes are located in Arizona and Utah. Enjoy!

 

5. Search for New Gripping Ideas

There are so many extraordinary websites and portfolios of landscape photographers across the web! To drop just a few names, you should definitely take a look at the work of Randall Sanger, Daniel Kordan, Zach Schnepf, and Danny Seidman. And, just for fun, you can drop an eye on National Geographic Photos of the Day in the Landscape category from time to time.

Great landscape photography is not only about being technically correct. It involves creativity and emotion. Always convey a story or a feeling to your images.

Image Sources: 1,2,3,4,5

Inspirational Portrait Photographers You Should Follow Today

What does it take to be one of the greatest portrait photographers in the world? Skill? Talent? Inspiration? Courage? These are all features you are about to discover at our favorite portrait photographers. Some of the professionals featuring our list are world-famous, some are well-known in smaller circles, some tell cultural stories, others more personal ones. But they all have something in common: a unique, thought-provoking and sometimes truly mind-blowing perspective both on the art of portraiture and life.

Our list of portrait photographers you should definitely know about is open to other entries as well. There are, of course, many more portrait photographers worthy of praise and admiration. That is why we cheerfully encourage our readers and followers to reach out to us with any thoughts, ideas or suggestions. Feel free to add names and stories to our lists of inspiring photographers from around the world. Write your own list and send it to us to be published!

Portrait Photographer: Adrian Blachut

Location:  Warsaw, Poland

Bio: Adrian Blachut is a Polish fine art portrait photographer who started his career in photography in 2007 after graduating economics and logistics. He is currently based in Warsaw, the capital of Poland, working as a commercial photographer and videomaker. His series of black & white portraits entitled ‘Faces’ is focused on what eyes say about people. You should definitely take a look at these expressive, intense photographs created in a classical artistic fashion.

Adrian Blachut portrait photographer

‘Faces’ Project © Adrian Blachut

Website: Adrian Blachut Photography, Facebook Official Page

 

Portrait Photographer: Lee Jeffries

Location:  Manchester, United Kingdom.

Bio: Seeing the street portraits signed by Lee Jeffries you would say he has studied photography for his entire life, but he did not. Lee Jeffries is an accountant currently living in Manchester. He became a self-taught and self-funded photographer about 7 years ago. The subjects of his portraiture are homeless people from various corners of the world. He started his photographic project entitled LOST ANGELS with the photograph of a woman praying in Rome, but his first street portrait was the one of a homeless girl on the streets of London.

This brilliant portrait photographer’s work is seen not simply as photojournalism or street photography, but as powerful spiritual iconography. What makes these black & white images of homeless people stand out is the photographer’s use of lights and shadows, as well as the powerful emotions behind the shots. His portraiture work is so emotionally charged that he even declared that: “When I’m talking to these people, I can’t then leave that emotion, so when I get back to my computer so emotionally involved, sometimes I will start to cry when processing the image”.

His work has been featured in top lists of street and portrait photography across the web and praised in major publications such as Time, the Independent, Guardian and Huffington Post.

New York by Lee Jeffries portrait photographer

New York © Lee Jeffries

Watch more of his images in this video.

Website: Lee Jeffries Portrait Photography on 500px.com, Lee Jeffries Photography Facebook Page.
 

Portrait Photographer: Cato Lein

Location:  Stockholm, Sweden.

Bio: Born in Båtsfjord, Norway, Cato Lein is currently based in Stockholm, Sweden. He is one of the most prominent and acclaimed Swedish portrait photographers, having worked for many publishing houses and magazines in Scandinavia. However, his photographic projects took his around the world. He is now working on a project in Poland. He has also exhibited portraits of Polish and foreign writers and translators in the past.

Cato Lein’s portrait photography is highly original, intense, and even provocative. His passion for powerful black & white imagery is his trademark. As concerns the way he approaches the art of portraiture, he says that:

“I often do two takes, one for the client and for myself. With my own, I test the limits of the possible – see how far I can go. This shot shows the person portrayed in a new way, never negatively but not flatteringly either. That’s what lots of my pictures are like: I’ve pushed the look in a direction that ends up surprising the models. Mostly, they like what I do and respect my artistic freedom.”

Norman Manea by Cato Lein portrait photographer

Norman Manea © Cato Lein

Website: Cato Lein Photography on Facebook, Instagram, Tumblr.

 

Portrait Photographer: Jimmy Nelson

Location: Amsterdam,  Netherlands and Ibiza.

Bio: Jimmy Nelson is a British photojournalist and photographer who traveled the world to document and photograph some of the most fantastic tribes left on the planet today. His vibrant and intriguing portraits of indigenous people taken in more than 44 countries around the globe have conquered our attention and admiration. Find out more about his stories and journey in Europe, Africa, South America, Asia and the South Pacific from his speech at TEDx Amsterdam.

before they pass away photo by jimmy nelson portrait photographer

‘Before They Pass Away’ Project © Jimmy Nelson

Website: Jimmy Nelson Photography.

 

Portrait Photographer: Nina Mašic-Lizdek

Location: Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Bio: Nina Mašic is a 24-year-old photographer and retoucher currently based in Sarajevo. She sees photography as a means of exploring and experiencing life with more intensity. Her images reveal different aspects of the world around us in pure beauty.

photo by nina masic portrait photographer

Photograph by Nina Masic

Website: Nina Mašic Photography, 500xp.com Page, Facebook Page, Instagram.

 

Portrait Photographer: Maja Topcagic

Location:  Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Bio: Maja Topcagic is the second portrait photographer born in Bosnia and Herzegovina featuring our list. She is currently working as a computer science teacher in Bihac, but also freelancing for Trevillion Images, 500px.com, Art+Commerce/Vogue Italia, and WIN New York.

She began her journey as a photographer at the age of 19 and since then she has invested energy both in hes passion for mathematics and photographic art. ‘Math and art are soulmates, and using these very natural things for a human being we can describe our world and our mind’, she says. It is better to let her images speak for themselves. Let’s take a look at one of  her beautiful, dreamy portrait.

blossom by maya toccagic portrait photographer

Blossom © Maja Topcagic

Website: Maja Topcagic Portfolio, 500px Page.

 

Portrait Photographer: Lisa Kristine

Location:  San Francisco, California.

Bio: Lisa Kristine is a highly appreciated humanitarian photographer. Part of her praised work showcases aspects of modern day human enslavement. She has also gained international recognition for capturing portraits of indigenous people from over 100 countries in six continents. ‘Few artists know how to capture the diversity and dignity of indigenous people. Lisa Kristine’s portraits exquisitely convey their silenced messages’, says Cosette Thompson, from Amnesty International. Lisa has explored the world in search of people, places and stories, creating unforgettable and meaningful images.

freedom, ghana by Lisa Kristine portrait photographer

Freedom, Ghana © Lisa Kristine

Website: Lisa Kristine Photography.

 

Portrait Photographer: Annie Leibovitz

Location: New York City, NY.

Bio: We have already featured Annie Leibovitz in our top fashion photographers list, as well as in out 10 famous photographers you should know about, but it is simply impossible not to mention her again as one of the most talented American portrait photographers today.

Meryl Streep photo by Annie Leibovitz portrait photographer

Meryl Streep © Annie Leibovitz

Website: Annie Leibovitz Photography on Tumblr.

 

Portrait Photographer: Joe McNally

Location: Ridgefield, Connecticut.

Bio: Joe McNally is an internationally acclaimed American photographer, author and instructor, listed by American Photo as one of the 100 Most Important People in Photography. He has worked as a photojournalist for 30 years now and shot cover stories for Time, Newsweek, New York, Fortune, Men’s Journal, National Geographic, LIFE and many more. He is the author of the first all-digital coverage of the history of the National Geographic, called ‘The Future of Flying’.

One of his noteworthy projects we want to bring into view is ‘Faces of Ground Zero’, created soon after the 9/11 tragedy, which is a collection of monumental, life-sized portraits of the heroes of September 11, 2001. As the official page of this projects reads, the photographs show ‘McNally’s brilliance as a photographer and his humanity in capturing everyday people in these historic moments’.

face of ground zero by joe mcnally portrait photographer

‘Faces of Ground Zero’ Project © Joe McNally

Website: Joe McNally Portfolio, Faces of Ground Zero Project.

 

Portrait Photographer: Katarina Smuraga

Location:  St. Petersburg, Russia.

Bio: Born in Vitebsk, Belarus, Katarina Smuraga is currently based in St. Petersburg, Russia. The images she creates are genuine and vivid, disturbing, yet refreshing. Katarina’s photos portray sensitive subjects and have an incredible emotional power.

photo by Katarina Smuraga portrait photography

Photograph by Katarina Smuraga

Website: Katarina Smuraga Photography on Flickr.

Image Sources: photographs featured in this article belong to the portrait photographers listed above and are protected by copyright. 

Nature Photography Winners of National Geographic Photo Contest 2014

National Geographic Photo Contest is an annual competition bringing into view world’s most brilliant images. In 2014 both hobbyist and professional photographers around the globe have submitted more than 9,200 entries in three photo categories: People, Places and Nature. We’ve chosen to present best nature photography submissions as a source of inspiration and delight. Let’s check out Nat Geo editor’s favorite pics and find out more about these amazing nature photographers.

Nature photographer: Nicole Cambré

Nicole Cambré is the winner of National Geographic Photo Contest 2014 in the nature photography category. Her image of the jumping wildebeest also won the nature category of the 1X Photo Awards 2014 and the first prize in the wildlife category of the Monochrome Awards 2015.

Nicole Cambre Nature Photography Winner Photo

Nat Geo Photo Contest 2014 Winning Image in Nature Photography Category © Nicole Cambre

Photo Location: North Serengeti, Tanzania.

Nature Photography Entry Description: ‘Jump of the wildebeest at the Mara River’

You can follow Nicole’s photographic work on her Facebook page or website.

Nature photographer: Christian Miller

Christian Miller Nature Photography Honirable Mention Nat Geo Photo Contest 2014

Nat Geo Photo Contest 2014 – Honorable Mention in the Nature Photography Category © Christian Miller

Photo Location: Cairns, Great Barrier Reef, Flynn Reef, Australia.

Nature Photography Entry Description: ‘On a windy day right after a Cyclone passed the far northern Great Barrier Reef I took some friends out to the reef. Never before I saw that many glass fish on this particular coral ‘bommie’. Just when I setup my camera, this Napoleon Wrasse swam right through the school of fish building a living frame.’

Check out Christian Miller’s incredible nature photos on his 500px page.

Nature photographer: Prashant Meswani

Prashant Meswani nature photography honorable mention nat geo photo contest

Honorable Mention in the Nature Photography Category of Nat Geo Photo Contest 2014 © Prashant Meswani

Photo Location: Richmond Park, London, UK.

Nature Photography Entry Description: Stag Deer Bellowing in Richmond Park

Other beautiful nature photography examples signed by Prashant Meswani can be found on his 500px page.

Nature photographer: Henrik Nilsson

henrik nilsson nature photography

Honorable Mention in the Nature Photography Category of Nat Geo Photo Contest 2014 © Henrik Nilsson

 

Photo Location: Boundary Bay, BC, Canada.

Nature Photography Entry Description: ‘A wild short eared owl completes a shoulder check in case something was missed. Northern harriers were also hunting in the field and these raptors will often steal a kill from the owls.’

Henrik Nilsson’s nature photography is focused on wildlife. For more inspiring images, take a look at his website.

Nature photographer: Zik Teo

Honorable Mention in the Nature Photography Category of Nat Geo Photo Contest 2014 © Zik Teo

Honorable Mention in the Nature Photography Category of Nat Geo Photo Contest 2014 © Zik Teo

Photo Location: Ngorongoro Conservation Area, Tanzania.

Nature Photography Entry Description: Ngorongoro Crater, Tanzania, is the world’s largest inactive volcanic caldera. It is a collapsed volcano that harbors a range of African wildlife that live in relatively close proximity and competition of each other. Zebras are amongst the most common animals in the crater along with wildebeest, gazelles, hyenas, and lions. On a clear day, a 360º view of the crater rim can be seen whilst being inside.

If Zik Teo’s nature pic has captured your interest, visit his 500xp page for more images.

Nature photographer: Maie Kirnmann

Maie Kirnmann nature photography

Honorable Mention in the Nature Photography Category of Nat Geo Photo Contest 2014 © Maie Kirnmann

Photo Location: Estonia, Tabasalu.

Nature Photography Entry Description: Ice art on the window.

Maie Kirnmann is a photographer based in Tallinn, Estonia whose work is centered around landscape and nature photography. Her photographic work can be followed on Facebook.

Nature photographer: Archna Singh

archna singh nature photography

Honorable Mention in the Nature Photography Category of Nat Geo Photo Contest 2014 © Archna Singh

Photo Location: Bandhavgarh National Park, Madhya Pradesh, India.

Nature Photography Entry Description: ‘This playful fight amongst two young sub adult Tigers was indeed a brilliant life time opportunity, that lasted exactly 4-5 seconds. The cubs were sitting in the grass as dusk approached when suddenly one of them sneaked up behind the other and what happened next is captured in this image. This playful fight among the siblings is what prepares them for their survival in the wild. The sheer power of the Tiger is beautifully captured in this image and portrays the sheer muscle power that these magnificent cats possess. May 5th, 2014, Bandhavgarh National Park, Madhya Pradesh, India.’

Archna Singh is a fashion designer turned photographer. She is passionate about wildlife and landscape photography and her interest in exploring the forests of Africa made her the author of several nature photography exhibitions.

These nature photographers’ submissions were judged for their level of creativity and technical quality by a panel of National Geographic professional. The Grand Prize winner, Nicole Cambré received $10,000 and a trip to National Geographic headquarters in Washington, D.C., where she participated in the annual National Geographic Photography Seminar at the beginning of this year. Pretty impressive, isn’t it?

You can download these amazing nature photos as free wallpapers from the National Geographic website. Also, we recommend you to explore other galleries of editor’s top pics and try your luck. If you want to submit your best photo, join their competition for a chance to win great prizes. Hurry up! They are still taking submissions for the 2015 Traveler Photo Contest until June 30. Find out more about the National Geographic Photo Contest in our post on photo contests you must enter in 2015.

If you enjoyed reading our post or want to share any thoughts, ideas or suggestions with us, drop us a line. For more insights into the wonders of photography, subscribe to Virtual Photography Studio or follow us on Facebook or Twitter.

Image Sources: National Geographic Photo Contest 2014 Official Page

What Does ISO Mean in Photography?

Understanding what ISO is in photography and using your digital camera accordingly is essential for capturing great grain free images. What does ISO mean and what are the ideal ISO settings for different types of photography are the questions we decided to answer to in a more in depth manner.

What Does ISO Mean?

 

ISO is one of the three pillars of photography along with Aperture and Shutter Speed. We have already touched both on the ISO meaning and its importance when we discussed how to make the most from your camera exposure. However, there’s always more useful information to provide on the subject, especially for beginners.

To put it simple, ISO refers to how sensitive your digital camera or film is to light. So anytime we talk about ISO photography, we refer to the ideal amount of light we need for well-exposed images. Both in film and digital photography, ISO indicates the sensitivity to light and is measured in numbers – 100, 200, 400, 800 etc. These numbers are established by the International Organisation for Standardization. Here are the ISO standards used in photography:

ISO Standards used in Photography - ISO scale

Back in the film photography days, an ISO of 100 was best for shooting in natural light, while 400 ISO was commonly used for indoor photography.

In our digital age, though, ISO settings allow you to better control the quality of your photo. As compared to film, on digital cameras you can set a different ISO for each shot. So, in case you come across situations when you cannot use flash, you can rapidly switch your ISO up to 3200 and make the image sensor more sensitive to light. With film, the higher the ISO, the more grainy and noisy the pictures were.

How does ISO work? The lower the ISO is, the less sensitive your camera will be to light. A higher ISO number is thus necessary in low light conditions. This, unfortunately, increases the noise of your shots, which means that finest images are always achieved in natural light.

experimenting with iso settings

Experimenting with ISO Settings

Base ISO

All digital cameras have a so-called base ISO which is the lowest ISO you can use to capture high quality images. While most of Nikon cameras have a base ISO of 200, the typical base ISO for Canon is 100.  ISO 100 is the lowest recommended ISO for digital cameras, but the number can drop to 80, 64 and even 50 depending on light conditions and shooting purposes.

The ISO number can be increased from 100 or 200 to 400, 800, 1600, 3200, 6400 end even higher. The highest the ISO is, the less time is needed to capture an image. For instance, ISO 100 has a capture speed of 1 second, while ISO 1600 speed is sixteen times lower.

Auto ISO

Many digital cameras have a special setting called Auto ISO. How does Auto ISO work? Auto ISO is great for low-light shooting. All you need to do is set a maximum ISO number to limit the grain in your image, such as ISO 800, and the camera will automatically change it based on the amount of light available.

auto iso settings for Canon

Auto ISO for Canon Digital Cameras

ISO, Aperture and Shutter Speed

Before experimenting with different ISO settings, it is important to learn more about Aperture and Shutter Speed which with ISO are part of the Exposure Triangle.

Light and noise are affected not only by the ISO number, but also by how fast the shutter speed and how large the aperture are set. A slower shutter speed means a longer time for the light to hit the image sensor. Also, the larger the aperture is, the more light will get through the lenses.

A low ISO goes hand in hand with a larger aperture. The less sensitive is the image sensor, the more light will need to get through the lenses. Also, when using a lower ISO, it is advisable to set slower shutter speed so that the light is delivered into the sensor over a longer period of time.

Consequently, if we set the ISO high, we need less light over a shorter period of time.

ISO Settings by Types of Photography

Next, we are going to answer to how to use ISO on your digital camera according to different types of photography.

  • LOW ISO USAGE

Low ISO numbers, such as 100 or 200, are perfect for shooting in bright light. Natural light allows you to stick to a low ISO which will result in a higher quality and less grainier or even grain free images. A low ISO is ideal for all types of outdoor photography, be in landscape, nature, flower or travel photography as long as the sunlight is your friend.

Flower at ISO 100

Flower Captured at ISO 100

Low ISO can be used in dark settings as well, if you wish to add a dramatic effect to your photographs. However, if you want to lower the ISO number and there is little light to work with, you should also use a tripod or hold your camera steady by placing it on a flat, solid surface.

  • HIGH ISO USAGE

High ISO is mandatory in low light conditions. In order for your shot to be well-exposed, don’t forget to set a faster shutter speed as well after increasing the ISO number.

Usually, higher ISO settings are needed for indoor photography when shooting:

  • Indoor Sport Events
  • Art Gallery Shows
  • Parties and Weddings
  • Interior Design Photography
low light examples of ISO settings

Low Light Examples of ISO Settings for Indoor Photography

In certain circumstances, you can use a flash instead of increasing the ISO, but the images will probably get noisier and grainier.

We hope we provided you with useful answers to ‘what does ISO mean?’ and ‘how does ISO work for stunning results?’. If you have any other questions or comments, just drop us a line.

Image Sources: 1,2,3,4

Top Photography Schools in the US

Interested in earning a photography degree and wonder what the best photography school is in the US nowadays? We have created a list with highly rated photography schools around the States to choose from. The following institutions offer a wide range of photography programs, along with a chance to work with renowned professionals from around the world.

Photography School: Yale School of Fine Art

Location: New Haven, Connecticut

Courses:

Yale School of Fine Art offers an MFA in Photography, which is a two-year program of study focused on a broad definition of photography as a lens-based medium. Yale is a top rated institution and you should expect a tough competition. Only nine students have the change to achieve a place there every year.

Website: art.yale.edu

Yale School of Fine Arts - photography school

 

Photography School: University of California

Location: Los Angeles, California

Courses:

UCLA offers an undergraduate photo program focusing on the conjunction between photography and art. Beside photography, they encourage students to experiment with art and video installation, as well as to know about photography history and narrative studies.

Website: www.art.ucla.edu/photography

 

Photography School: School of the Art Institute of Chicago

Location: Chicago, Illinois

Courses:

The Department of Photography at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago is open to graduate and undergraduate applications. The courses they offer are eclectic and experimental, encouraging students to explore both the practice and theory of photography.

Website: www.saic.edu

Art Institute of Chicago Photography School

Photography School: Rohde Island School of Design

Location: Providence, Rhode Island

Courses:

At RISD you can learn how to ‘read’ and create images by following both a Bachelor’s program and a Master’s program. Undergraduates are thought to explore the social, cultural and historical aspects of photography as a cultural medium, while graduate students develop visual and critical expertise, along with a deeper knowledge of contemporary art practices. If you are curious about what they do there, take a look at BFA student work, as well as at MFA student photographs.

Website: photo.risd.edu

 

Photography School: School of Visual Arts

Location: New York, NY

Courses:

SVA has a diverse curriculum on photography, offering no less than 111 undergraduate courses on photography, as well as a MPS in Digital Photography, and a MFA in Photography, Video and Related media. What makes this photography stand out is their mentor program for seniors with renowned professionals working in the NYC photographic art scene.

Website: www.sva.edu

school of visual arts New York - photography school

Photography School: University of Arizona School of Art

Location: Arizona, Phoenix

Courses:

UVA offers both a BFA and MFA in Studio Art with a focus on photography. Students are thought about the role of photography in contemporary culture along with being encourage to explore the boundaries of this medium and experiment with different kinds of photographic practices. The curriculum includes diverse courses, ranging from traditional black and white darkroom techniques, to video and performance.

Website: art.arizona.edu/students/programs-of-study/photography

 

 

Photography School: University of New Mexico – College of Fine Arts

Location: Albuquerque, New Mexico

Courses:

The College of Fine Arts at UNM offers a BFA and MFA in photography with an emphasis on the creativity, innovation and interdisciplinarity. Students have the opportunity to explore multiple possibilities of lens-based imaging along with developing a critical understanding of contemporary art theory. At UNM facilities include digital classrooms, darkrooms for film processing, lighting equipment and DSLRs, among others.

Website: art.unm.edu/photography

 

Photography School: University of Washington School of Art

Location: St. Louis, Missouri

Courses:

With 22 Nobel laureates, Washington University deserves to be part of our top selection of educational institutions. At the School of Art + Art History + Design, students can pursue a Photomedia undergraduate program (a BFA in digital imaging and photography) focused on a wide array of studio art and media practices. The courses are meant to provide a historical perspective on photography as a social and cultural medium, along with video and installation work. Specifically, the program offers instruction in lighting, large format digital and analog practices, and in contemporary digital image processing.

Website: art.washington.edu/art/undergraduate2/photomedia/courses

university of washington school of art exhibition space

Photography School: Drexel University

Location: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Courses:

Drexel University is a top ranked institution offering a unique photography program combining both applied and theoretical teaching methods. Apart from photography foundation courses, students in the first year of study can benefit from internships every six months. Juniors have the chance to work in diverse types of businesses from Advertising Photography to Fashion Photography or Digital Technology.

Website: www.drexel.edu/westphal/undergraduate/PHTO

Photography School: Massachusetts College of Art and Design

Location: Boston, Massachusetts

Courses:

Massachusetts College of Art and Design offers a BFA Photography program focus on photography as fine art. Teachers encourage MassArt students to develop a personal, creative vision, along with technical excellence. The curriculum offers foundation courses of both film-based and digital tools. Facilities include a three-studio digital facility with large printers, scanners and workstations, analog black & white developing and printing areas, and two-large gang darkrooms. At MassArt students can work with a 20×24 Polaroid ‘Land Camera’ built by the founder of Polaroid, as well as benefiting from the support of renowned teachers and visiting professionals from around the world.

Website: www.massart.edu/academic_programs/photography

Image Sources: 1, 2, 3, 4