The Top 5 Benefits Of Manual Exposure In Photography

manual exposure

Automatic exposure settings certainly make the photography experience easier, but for those looking to take more creative control, manual exposure is the way to go. Manual settings can be beneficial in a number of photography environments and situations where the goal is to create an image greater than the average assigned in auto. Continue reading

Picturing Major Life Events – Part 6: Managing Memories through Separation or Divorce

divorceLife is hard to plan for. Seasons change, things happen, and time wears on. But when a major life event occurs, you need to make sure you’re able to see the big picture.


This is why we’re creating a series of posts on the tips and tricks to help manage major life events. These events range from something as simple as spring cleaning (and how it can affect your entire life) to as complicated as divorce or separation. And, of course, we’ll help you determine what to do with those old print photos at every step of the way.


Part 1: Spring Cleaning Tips and Tricks
Part 2: Moving and Packing Tips and Tricks
Part 3: Getting Married and Combining Families 
Part 4: Starting and Growing a Family
Part 5: Ancestry Research and Genealogy


Part 6: Managing Memories through Separation or Divorce


In a recent poll, we asked our customers what was the #1 reason for having their photos scanned and digitized. As it turns out, the need to evenly divide memories due to a separation or divorce was the major motivating factor.


For us here at ScanMyPhotos, we often get questions regarding managing memories during a separation or divorce. We do our best to provide professional and helpful customer service for anyone who is going through tough times—and we stick to our policies during the most delicate of situations. However, in order to make the process a much smoother experience for everyone involved, we pulled together the following tips.


Remember that everyone can receive (and replicate) digital copies


It is far easier to split photos down the middle than it is to divide up any other physical assets. The reason being is that you can easily scan, digitize, and even reprint the photos you’ve accumulated together throughout the years. This way, no one has to walk away with only half of the memories—both parties can have digital access to the photos and keep them for years to come.  Continue reading

Capturing the Moment: 5 Photos to Take on Mother’s Day

Mother's Day Photos

The author’s family, Mother’s Day 1980

By Vanessa Mallory Kotz

 

Mother’s Day is May 12th and it’s a perfect opportunity to take family photos that will last for a lifetime of memories. Whether you are a mom or love someone who is a mom, take the time to record the moment, and then get back to celebrating your favorite ladies. Here’s a list of five shots to plan for during the special day.

 

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8 Travel Photography Tips from the Travel Addicts

If you love to travel, you probably know the Travel Addicts (aka, Lance and Laura), one of the first and most popular travel blogs out there. What started in 2008 as an online journal has morphed into a must-read blog for thousands and thousands of people who are planning a trip or just looking for some inspiration.

 

The Rock of Cashel in Ireland

The Rock of Cashel in Ireland, a great example of an interesting angle. Copyright 2013 Travel Addicts.

They such consummate travelers that, when I asked Lance during a recent phone call about his favorite travel destination, he hesitated. “It’s very difficult to answer that question, having been to somewhere north of 50 countries. If you asked us today, we would say our favorite country is Slovakia and our favorite city is Rome. In Slovakia, you can have truly amazing travel experiences for pennies.”

 

Lance and Laura have honed their photography skills over the years as well, and they were more than happy to share their top 8 travel photography tips:


 

1. Basic cameras are perfectly fine

 

Our biggest tip: You don’t need truly amazing camera equipment to take great photos. iPhones and point-and-shoot cameras can, in a lot of situations, do just as good of a job as a high-end DSLR camera. Laura took a photo during a trip to Ireland last year that has been used by a magazine in Australia, and Dublin bought the rights to the photo to use on their new website. She took it on an iPhone, she didn’t set up the shot – she just saw it at the moment and knew, that’s it.

 

2. Capture candid moments

 

We all take photos of our family in front of, say, the Taj Mahal, but the photos that will be most memorable are the candids. When your child is playing in the sand at the beach and he doesn’t know you’re taking the photo, you have all the time in the world to set up the photo because your subject is so focused on what he is doing. Focus and capture those candid moments because it creates a really compelling image.

 

Red house from Kulusuk in Eastern Greenland

The red house from Kulusuk in Eastern Greenland is a nice example of using color and contrasts (in this case, a texture contrast of wood, water, and rock.) Copyright 2010 Travel Addicts.

3. Focus on colors and contrasts

 

Vibrant colors add a lot to the photo. Even a little bit of blue sky does wonders because it brings in some elements of natural lighting. If you’re taking a picture of something with bright red in it, the red adds a layer to the photo you won’t get otherwise.

 

4. Get off the beaten path

 

Go around the corner, and see what’s there. If you’re walking down the main boulevard in a city, you might not come into contact with those interesting, slice-of-life shots that are truly memorable unless you go off the beaten path.

 

5. The late afternoon light is as good as the early morning light

 

A lot of photographers say that early morning light is best, but we’re night owls. We are not getting up at 5 am to take photos! Late afternoon light can be just as good.

 

If there’s a place we know is going to be really photogenic, sometimes we schedule our day knowing we want to take photos there late in the afternoon.

 

6. Look for very different angles

 

When you’re going to that iconic place – the Eiffel Tower or the Coliseum in Rome – look for a way to make it interesting. Bring a plant or bush into the foreground or offset the photo so the Eiffel Tower is not right in the middle of the frame. It makes that image much more interesting (as you can see in the photo of the Rock of Cashel).

 

Keswick Hall in Charlottesville, VA

The rule of thirds. Taken at Keswick Hall in Charlottesville, VA. Copyright 2014 Travel Addicts.

7. Use the rule of thirds

 

Divide your field of view into nine boxes – it really helps you take better pictures. Shift your horizon so it’s not in the middle of the frame but in the top or bottom, or shift so your subject is to the right or left.

 

8. Learn from the photos you love

 

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6 Thanksgiving Photography Ideas You’ll Want to Try This Holiday

thanksgiving photographyTurkey day is almost here and you’ll want to make sure you’re snapping up the memories that will last a lifetime. Thanksgiving photography is an often overlooked aspect of taking pictures.


Each year we find ourselves snapping obligatory photos to mark the event but don’t often go into this special holiday with a photography strategy.

 

This year we encourage you to think outside the box and step up your Thanksgiving pictures with the tips below!

 

Thanksgiving - 6 Thanksgiving Photography Ideas You’ll Want to Try This Holiday Take the perfect turkey picture

 

The main event, the star of the show—of course, the turkey should get its own mini photo shoot on Thanksgiving! Taking an amazing picture of your turkey falls into the food photography category so you’ll want to make sure you’re following tricks for taking excellent food shots.

 

For this, you’ll want to capture sharp details so the lower the ISO, the better. You’ll also want to make sure your shutter speeds are matching your ISO—so somewhere around a 60th of a second will work (but you’ll need a tripod). From there you’ll want to manually adjust your aperture to make sure you’re getting the look you want.

 

Get candid

 

We often think of staged, Norman Rockwell type photos as our go-to photo aesthetic this time of year. But why not to add in a few action shots? Try taking some candid pictures of the host or hostess doing their thing in the kitchen, jokes and laughs shared between family members, or everyone cheering when a touchdown is scored in the big game. These photos will help you remember far more than the dinner as time wears on.

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