Click it Up a Notch http://clickitupanotch.com Photography Tips: Basic Photography Tips Mon, 21 Jul 2014 12:00:23 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Critique Me – Lindsay at Detrick Photography http://clickitupanotch.com/2014/07/critique-lindsay-detrick-photography/ http://clickitupanotch.com/2014/07/critique-lindsay-detrick-photography/#comments Mon, 21 Jul 2014 12:00:23 +0000 http://clickitupanotch.com/?p=14534 Author information
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I combined my passion of teaching and photography to create this website. I invite you to take this 30 day challenge - The Unexpected Everyday
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Remember:
-Read How to Critique a Photo
-Make a critique sandwich – something positive, something you would have done differently, something positive
-My rule: no improvement tip = deleted comment
-This will benefit the person leaving the photo critique just as much if not more than the person receiving the critique.
-If you would like to have an image critiqued be sure to read How to submit an image for critique.

Thank you to Lindsay at Detrick Photography for submitting the following image.
Settings: f/2 | SS 1/250 | ISO 100
Click it up a notch Critique

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Critique Me – Susan Jeske http://clickitupanotch.com/2014/07/critique-me-susan-jeske/ http://clickitupanotch.com/2014/07/critique-me-susan-jeske/#comments Wed, 16 Jul 2014 15:58:27 +0000 http://clickitupanotch.com/?p=14514 Author information
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I combined my passion of teaching and photography to create this website. I invite you to take this 30 day challenge - The Unexpected Everyday
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Remember:
-Read How to Critique a Photo
-Make a critique sandwich – something positive, something you would have done differently, something positive
-My rule: no improvement tip = deleted comment
-This will benefit the person leaving the photo critique just as much if not more than the person receiving the critique.
-If you would like to have an image critiqued be sure to read How to submit an image for critique.

Thanks to Susan Jeske for submitting the following image.
Settings: f/1.8, SS 1/640, ISO 800
Susan Jeske

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Out of Office http://clickitupanotch.com/2014/06/office/ http://clickitupanotch.com/2014/06/office/#comments Fri, 20 Jun 2014 13:38:57 +0000 http://clickitupanotch.com/?p=14502 Author information
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I combined my passion of teaching and photography to create this website. I invite you to take this 30 day challenge - The Unexpected Everyday
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“I’m leaving on a jet plane, don’t know when I’ll be back again.”

Come on, sing it with me :)

I’m heading to Europe and decided to not post any new tutorials or posts while I’m away. I figured my husband may not like me sitting at a Paris cafe working. So I’m on vacation.

A few things to keep in mind
1. We will still be posting on our Facebook page with lots of great tutorials for you to check out. A few of my contributors are going to be around to help answer any questions that may pop up over there. Feel free to help each other out as well and help answer each other’s questions on our Facebook page. And as always, thank you for being so kind on our Facebook Page. I love that you guys are such a supportive and giving group!

2. The weekly emails with our weekly photography challenges will still be going out as well. You can sign up here.

3. If you order The Unexpected Everyday while I’m away, don’t worry, we have you covered as well. Email any issues to support@clickitupanotch.com and you will be taken care of.

4. I won’t be answering emails while I’m away so please be patient with me when I get back and sort through the hundreds of emails. Or do me a favor and wait until mid-July to email me so I’m not drowning in emails :)

5. If you are new to the site, WELCOME! You can start here with over 100 photography tutorials which should give you plenty to read while I’m away.

And last, if you want to follow along with my fun adventures while in Europe, I’ll be posting on Instagram while I’m away.

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I combined my passion of teaching and photography to create this website. I invite you to take this 30 day challenge - The Unexpected Everyday
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5 tips for taking pictures in public http://clickitupanotch.com/2014/06/tips-for-taking-pictures-in-public/ http://clickitupanotch.com/2014/06/tips-for-taking-pictures-in-public/#comments Wed, 18 Jun 2014 14:48:48 +0000 http://clickitupanotch.com/?p=14461 Author information
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I'm a homeschooling mama to four, married to my college sweetheart. Home is where the Air Force sends us, which is currently the Deep South. I'm a mostly-happy hobbyist photographer, retired from a client-based business for now. I love documenting our daily life, and I'm currently in my 5th year of a Project 365, Give me my mark3, a prime lens and a hazy afternoon and I'm one happy girl. When I'm not shooting, I love a cup of coffee (that hasn't been reheated 14 times) and curling up with a good book during nap time!
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5 tips for taking pictures in public via Click it Up a Notch copy
You bought the fancy DSLR, worked hard to master shooting in manual, all so you could capture your life beautifully right? So why does it sit on your desk or in your bag, while real life happens around you outside of your house?  Are you afraid you’ll break your expensive gear (valid fear!! I hear you!) or are you afraid of the stares of a few strangers? Or is it a bit of both? Here’s a few tips to help you overcome your fears and start shooting life outside your home!

movieblog

1. This camera was crazy $$$ expensive! I can’t take it anywhere because it might be stolen/broken/lost!

Well, yes. But with a bit of caution and common sense- you shouldn’t fear taking your gear out and actually USING it. I’d rather take my chances (small as they are) that nothing will happen to my gear and I’ll have captured some awesome shots of my kids doing our everyday activities. (Or if you don’t have kids- you’ll have shots of market trips/tourist explorations etc.)

Invest in a quality camera bag that will safely tote your camera/lenses. I am usually shooting with my 5dmark3 and a Sigma 35mm. So a good padded camera bag is a must.

Insure your equipment.  If you’re in business- it goes without saying, seriously, you should have your gear insured. If you’re a hobbyist- check your homeowner’s insurance policy to see what’s covered, and add extra coverage for your equipment if you need it!

Use common sense.  Don’t leave your camera unattended. Leave it around your neck, or in your bag, and your bag on you. Period.

Don’t expose your camera to conditions that are unsafe. I don’t have underwater housing for my DSLR- so when I head to the pool with my kids, I take my underwater safe point and shoot.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2. Don’t shoot bad behavior. 

If your kids are misbehaving, put the camera down. Nothing will bring on the stares (of frustration and judgement)- if you are standing there shooting a meltdown or your kid throwing things instead of disciplining. I am not above shooting tantrums, at home. I will shoot mild pouting in public, but if it’s an outburst and there’s any kind of misbehavior that is potentially damaging to a business or public place- you better believe my camera is not out.

blog127

In this shot- all the kids had been running around crazy like they had never been out in public before- I didn’t shoot that. We corrected behavior and then once they were calm, I asked them to pose for this shot. There was no way I wanted to condone their craziness by shooting it while everyone watched.

3. Ignore the stares.

For starters, so long as they aren’t staring because your kid is being a heathen- chances are they are just noticing what cute kids you have. Or admiring you for having guts to take pictures in public. But I actually can almost guarantee that they aren’t really paying that much attention to you. Think about it, when you’re in the grocery store with all your kids- how much attention are you giving other kids in the store (the ones that aren’t melting down that is- and then we all know we’re just glad it’s not our kids for once!)

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After I shot this picture of my son riding on the bottom of the grocery cart (and had to lay down in the aisle to get it), I had an elderly man staring at me, I flashed him a smile and he very sweetly said; “Sure looks like they’re having fun! Wish I could ride under there!” See, I thought he was going to be a Judgy McJudgerson and he wasn’t!

4. Go early.

I plan most outings where I intend to shoot a few frames as early in the day as I can. The grocery store is way less crowded when it opens at 9, getting lunch at 11 is much less crazy than 12:30.  Less people equals less intimidation/stares too! Your kids are probably in better moods early in the day too! Explore the library- there’s hardly ever a crowd in ours!

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5. Shoot a few shots and be done! 

Unless you’re planning to shoot a whole day in the life series, think through the kind of shots you’re looking for before you go. Plan them out a bit and then shoot them first so you can put your camera away and enjoy the outing.  Plus if your kids are anything like mine, the beginning of an outing is always the most mellow part- give them too much time and they usually melt down!

I knew before we even went to the zoo that I wanted a shot of my kids in front of the seal or polar bear tank, it was one of my must take shots. When we visited this part of the zoo, I was able to take the shot I imagined and then put the camera away and enjoy the moment! After all, you also want to remember the experience of life and your kids would love it if you weren’t always behind the camera right?  Get the shot and be done!

below

 

I hope these tips help you get out there and shoot your life! Use your fancy camera and your hard-earned skills and document your life!

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I'm a homeschooling mama to four, married to my college sweetheart. Home is where the Air Force sends us, which is currently the Deep South. I'm a mostly-happy hobbyist photographer, retired from a client-based business for now. I love documenting our daily life, and I'm currently in my 5th year of a Project 365, Give me my mark3, a prime lens and a hazy afternoon and I'm one happy girl. When I'm not shooting, I love a cup of coffee (that hasn't been reheated 14 times) and curling up with a good book during nap time!
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Critique Me – Mariah at Mariah Freeman Photography http://clickitupanotch.com/2014/06/critique-mariah-mariah-freeman-photography/ http://clickitupanotch.com/2014/06/critique-mariah-mariah-freeman-photography/#comments Mon, 16 Jun 2014 17:34:24 +0000 http://clickitupanotch.com/?p=14480 Author information
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I combined my passion of teaching and photography to create this website. I invite you to take this 30 day challenge - The Unexpected Everyday
]]>
Remember:
-Read How to Critique a Photo
-Make a critique sandwich – something positive, something you would have done differently, something positive
-My rule: no improvement tip = deleted comment
-This will benefit the person leaving the photo critique just as much if not more than the person receiving the critique.
-If you would like to have an image critiqued be sure to read How to submit an image for critique.

Thank you to Mariah at Mariah Freeman Photography for submitting the following image.
Settings: SS 1/400 | f/1.8 | ISO 1600
Mariah Freeman Photography

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I combined my passion of teaching and photography to create this website. I invite you to take this 30 day challenge - The Unexpected Everyday
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Lens Distortion: What Every Photographer Should Know http://clickitupanotch.com/2014/06/lens-distortion/ http://clickitupanotch.com/2014/06/lens-distortion/#comments Fri, 13 Jun 2014 14:17:10 +0000 http://clickitupanotch.com/?p=14422 Author information
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I am a photographer from Salt Lake City, UT. I enjoy shooting food, travel, macro, and lifestyle portraits. I have been in and out of the photography business since 2005, juggling the demands of motherhood (four kiddos) with my love of photography. I feel it is a true gift to be able to express who I am and my everyday through my lens. I find much joy in learning and improving, and in helping others grow. I also love a good sweaty workout, shopping alone, house boating on Lake Powell, sauteed mushrooms, salty & sweet together, and un-interrupted afternoon naps! Looking forward to sharing my knowledge and learning with all of you this year! Website/Blog | Facebook My Camera bag: Nikon D700 | Nikon 85mm f/1.4G | Nikon 24-70 f/2.8G | Nikon 35mm f/2D | Lensbaby Composer Pro| SB-910 Speedlight Flash
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Lens Distortion-What every photography should know via Click it Up a Notch

*This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for supporting Click it Up a Notch.
Ever wondered why your subjects look disproportioned in certain images compared to real life? Or why buildings look like they are tipping? Chances are it’s due to lens distortion.  And no matter how expensive your lens, all have some distortion. The good news is it’s usually fixable in post processing and can even be desirable!

Lens distortion is an important factor to be aware of in the photography world.  It can make or break our images as artists, depending on the look and feel we are trying to achieve.  Today I’ll explain what distortion is, why it’s good or bad, and how to correct it in post processing if needed.

What is lens distortion?

In a nutshell, it’s when a lens produces curved lines where straight lines should be.  The two most common types of lens distortion are barrel distortion and pincushion distortion.

lens distortion graphic

Barrel distortion is where straight lines bend outward from the center of the image.
Wide-angle prime lenses such as a 20mm lens or zoom lenses like my Nikon 24-70mm shot at its wide end typically produce images with barrel distortion because they have a wide field of view. You will most often notice distortion in architectural images where the lines of the buildings bow outward, away from the center of the image. In portraits, it can make subjects look pudgy or large-headed in comparison to the rest of their body.

Here’s an architectural image I took in Barcelona last summer.  If you look closely at the pillars in the first one, they are slanted. The second image is after the distortion was corrected in Lightroom. You will notice the pillars are straightened in the second image.

DSC_1482distortionDSC_1482corrected

Here’s another example. Notice the curved gates, wall, and the temple in the background that seems to be leaning backwards slightly.

DSC_9400distortionDSC_9400corrected

I actually liked the original distorted version of this photo better because after I made corrections it cropped his feet out, which bothered me more than the curved lines. It’s always your call as the artist on what you want to fix/change!

Barrel distortion will also occur if you are standing too close to your subject with a wide angle lens or a zoom lens at the wide end (ie. 24mm). Whatever body part is closest to the camera, it will look abnormally large! Heads, eyes, noses or limbs will look pronounced and awkward. This is why it’s not usually a good idea to shoot portraits with a wide-angle lens!  The best focal length for portraits is 50mm and above when trying to avoid distortion.

Here’s a portrait comparison using my 24-70mm lens shot at different focal lengths, standing about the same distance from my son. Notice how odd his head looks at 24mm vs. 55 mm. And how small the rest of his body looks compared to his head.

Boston

Pincushion distortion is where straight lines bend or “pinch” inward from the center of the image.
Usually pincushion distortion happens at the telephoto end (ie. 200mm) of a zoom lens such as a 70-200mm lens.  It can actually be great for portraits because it can make people look thinner than they are! You will most likely notice pincushion distortion in images with straight lines. The further the lines are away from the center of the image, the more noticeable the distortion will be. Here’s an example. The roof top of Caesar’s Palace in Vegas…

caesars

So when is distortion a good thing?
Distortion can be fun! The previous image of Caesar’s Palace would have been quite boring with a straight roof. Don’t you agree? I intentionally chose distortion by shooting wide at 24mm, and placing the roofline towards the top 1/3 of the image, which curved the line.

Other examples of intentional distortion is when you want to to portray humor or a feeling that your subjects are coming at you as a viewer.

girls silly

Or when you want to create a unique perspective. I shot this next image a couple of years ago of my baby eating. I wanted the viewer to feel my perspective as I was feeding him. Notice his hand and head/eyes are slightly larger than normal, but it adds to the feeling of the image.

k eating

A fish-eye lens is also a great way to practice intentional distortion. My talented friend Kelly Garvey, using her 16mm f/2.8 fish-eye lens, shot these images.

kelly fisheyekelly fisheye2

It’s can be an artistic decision whether or not you want to incorporate the look of distortion into your images! 

So how do you fix distortion if you don’t want it apparent in your images?

Most of the time I don’t realize I have distortion problems until I pull up my images in post processing. And usually I don’t want it there! You will find that distortion appears in many images containing windows and door frames.  If you train your eye to spot the distortion in0-camera, as you shoot, you will save yourself some time fixing it later. Sometimes by simply scooting back or changing the plane of your camera in relation to your subject you can alleviate some distortion.  Move higher, lower, to the side, or change your focal length until you have the look you are going for. If there’s no way to avoid it, and you don’t like the look of distortion in your images, here’s how to fix it in Lightroom and Photoshop…

Lightroom
Under the Develop module, and Lens Corrections tab, check “Enable Profile Corrections” then experiment with choosing either auto, level, vertical, or full. Usually if I’m trying to correct lines I will choose vertical.

lightroom

If you want to fine tune your corrections you can click on the Manual tab under Lens Corrections where you can experiment with the different sliders to get your desired results. Also note, sometimes when making a lot of corrections you will need to re-crop the image because the changes will pull the sides of the image inward. I try to shoot with plenty of room on the sides when I know there will be distortion so I have room to crop afterwards. This is also a good reason to shoot in raw…so you have more pixels to work with if you need to crop after fixing distortion.

Photoshop
I use Photoshop CS5, but these options should be the same in more recent versions as well. Under Filter>>Lens Corrections you should see some of the same options as Lightroom where you can auto correct or go under >>Custom to fine tune. With the image below I experimented with vertical and horizontal perspective until the wall looked upright.

photoshop

Sometimes Lightroom does a better job at fixing distortion than Photoshop, or vice versa. I tend to do all my adjustments in Lightroom because I prefer the results I get over Photoshop. But feel free to experiment! Here’s the before and after of an image I shot in Spain. I corrected the leaning wall so it didn’t appear to be falling!

wallwall corrected

Hope this post helped explain lens distortion and the importance it plays in your images! Please share your thoughts or questions in the comments if you have them!

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I am a photographer from Salt Lake City, UT. I enjoy shooting food, travel, macro, and lifestyle portraits. I have been in and out of the photography business since 2005, juggling the demands of motherhood (four kiddos) with my love of photography. I feel it is a true gift to be able to express who I am and my everyday through my lens. I find much joy in learning and improving, and in helping others grow. I also love a good sweaty workout, shopping alone, house boating on Lake Powell, sauteed mushrooms, salty & sweet together, and un-interrupted afternoon naps! Looking forward to sharing my knowledge and learning with all of you this year! Website/Blog | Facebook My Camera bag: Nikon D700 | Nikon 85mm f/1.4G | Nikon 24-70 f/2.8G | Nikon 35mm f/2D | Lensbaby Composer Pro| SB-910 Speedlight Flash
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Critique Me – Lauren Kirkham http://clickitupanotch.com/2014/06/critique-lauren-kirkham/ http://clickitupanotch.com/2014/06/critique-lauren-kirkham/#comments Mon, 09 Jun 2014 14:58:30 +0000 http://clickitupanotch.com/?p=14413 Author information
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I combined my passion of teaching and photography to create this website. I invite you to take this 30 day challenge - The Unexpected Everyday
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Remember:
-Read How to Critique a Photo
-Make a critique sandwich – something positive, something you would have done differently, something positive
-My rule: no improvement tip = deleted comment
-This will benefit the person leaving the photo critique just as much if not more than the person receiving the critique.
-If you would like to have an image critiqued be sure to read How to submit an image for critique.

Thanks to Lauren for submitting the following image.
Settings: ISO 800 | SS 1/125 | f/2.5
Lauren Kirkham

***Important Announcement***
If you would like to have your photo critiqued in the Critique Me series, I will be opening the list up again tomorrow but ONLY TO THOSE SUBSCRIBED FOR OUR WEEKLY UPDATES. You need to have critiqued at least two other images in the series to be eligible. Make sure you have signed up for our weekly email updates so you will get the information on how to submit an image tomorrow. Sign up here.

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I combined my passion of teaching and photography to create this website. I invite you to take this 30 day challenge - The Unexpected Everyday
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Food photography – Behind the Scenes http://clickitupanotch.com/2014/06/food-photography-behind-the-scenes/ http://clickitupanotch.com/2014/06/food-photography-behind-the-scenes/#comments Fri, 06 Jun 2014 18:29:12 +0000 http://clickitupanotch.com/?p=14349 Author information
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I am a natural light photographer dedicated to shooting my everyday, ordinary life as it unfolds here in Southern California. I love seeing my life through the lens of my camera while photographing the people and moments that I don’t want to forget in my life. I am excited to share what I have learned along the way here at Click It Up a Notch!
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Food photography - Behind the Scenes via Click it Up a Notch
*Post contains affiliate links. Thanks in advance for supporting Click it Up a Notch.

I have always loved to see how people set up their shots for all areas of photography.  I like to see the food photography behind the scenes and often it is a nice reminder that not everyone has a beautiful natural light studio.  I think it helps show that you don’t need a large space or a studio to start with food photography.  You just need a little space & some good light.  So I have been trying to remember to take a pullback image of how I have set up the food for the image to show the variety of locations you may have never considered before that are right there at your house.

I am going to show one pullback & one final image from a variety of places all around my house.  As you will see, I like to experiment with different places and different backgrounds for food photography.  I rarely shoot in my actual kitchen and I often set up things on the floor to help get a variety of angles when I shooting.

Food photography – Behind the scenes

As you can see, for these images, I was set up on my dining room buffet for my “table” with an aluminum baking sheet for the background.  I chose the baking sheet behind to give the image a darker more moody look overall.

Food photography - Behind the Scenes via Click it Up a Notch
Food photography - Behind the Scenes via Click it Up a Notch
This is one I shot outside in the late afternoon on my patio outside.  It was late enough that I wasn’t get a lot of direct sun on the food but I could still use the light to enhance the image.  I wanted the light to add to the feeling of it being like the end of a summer day with the ice cream starting to melt.  I had a 36″x36″ board that I painted with a stain & some white paint.  I added a torn paper bag to add to the story of the image under the ice cream.

Food photography - Behind the Scenes via Click it Up a Notch
Food photography - Behind the Scenes via Click it Up a Notch

Here is another one that I shot in my backyard.  In this image, you can see that I was photographing our actual dinner.  Sometimes I will set up a food shot just to shoot it, but more often I am planning ahead & I know I want to shoot something before we eat it.  In the evening when the sun gets right behind the trees in our yard it leaves a nice soft light which is what I wanted to capture here for this pizza.  So I took the photo of it on the table right before we sat down to eat.  I knew I wanted a close up shot that showed the detail of the pizza and had the cutting board so I wasn’t too concerned about having already set the table.

Food photography - Behind the Scenes via Click it Up a Notch
Food photography - Behind the Scenes via Click it Up a Notch

The fun part about this lemonade set up is that I was on the floor in my son’s room because it has really great light {you have to find the good light, right?}.  In this image, the window was along the wall to the right of the set up.  As you can see from the pull back, I was using a set of skinny wood planks as a “table”.   The space between the boards was a little more than I liked but I am always up for experimenting to see how things will work as a background for food photography.  You just never know unless you try!

Food photography - Behind the Scenes via Click it Up a Notch
Food photography - Behind the Scenes via Click it Up a Notch

This was set up in my garage and as you can see, I got creative with my “tabletop” by using a white headboard we were storing in there.  I set up the white foam board to the side & back of the actual food to reflect the light back towards the subject.  My light was coming from the garage door which was open behind me.

Food photography - Behind the Scenes via Click it Up a Notch

Food photography - Behind the Scenes via Click it Up a Notch

When I wanted to set up this hummus and chips shot, I headed back out to the patio. The light was nice and even with some clouds on this late afternoon which acted as sort of a softbox for the images. I had everything styled on the baking sheet how I wanted and knew ahead of time that I planned to shoot close in without including the background if possible.

Food photography - Behind the Scenes via Click it Up a Notch

Food photography - Behind the Scenes via Click it Up a Notch

In this shot of raspberry lemonade, I set it up on tiles by a wall of windows.  I wanted the images to be backlit to show off the lemonade and create a light and airy image.  I had the white foam board to the left to fill in some shadows.

Food photography - Behind the Scenes via Click it Up a Notch

allisonjacobs_raspberrylemonade_650px

I shot this image on a whim after peeling an orange for snack.  I just put the black chalkboard piece down on the ground in front of the sliding glass doors in our kitchen, added the orange slices & a kitchen towel then took the shot.  As you can see it wasn’t direct light coming through the window because the sun was already high enough in the sky but it did give a really nice bright even look to the final image.

Food photography - Behind the Scenes via Click it Up a Notch
Food photography - Behind the Scenes via Click it Up a Notch

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I am a natural light photographer dedicated to shooting my everyday, ordinary life as it unfolds here in Southern California. I love seeing my life through the lens of my camera while photographing the people and moments that I don’t want to forget in my life. I am excited to share what I have learned along the way here at Click It Up a Notch!
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3 Steps to make a Photo Book in Lightroom http://clickitupanotch.com/2014/06/photo-book-in-lightroom/ http://clickitupanotch.com/2014/06/photo-book-in-lightroom/#comments Wed, 04 Jun 2014 14:01:21 +0000 http://clickitupanotch.com/?p=14391 Author information
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I combined my passion of teaching and photography to create this website. I invite you to take this 30 day challenge - The Unexpected Everyday
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3 steps to make a photo book in Lightroom
*Post contains affiliate links. Thanks in advance if you support Click it Up a Notch.

If you are anything like me, you’ve been dutifully practicing all of the amazing tutorials Courtney and her contributors provide on a weekly basis on this blog. Perhaps you purchased Courtney’s ebook The Unexpected Everyday and have been working through her photo prompts and creating quite a nice collection of images.
But now what? Are you letting those photos sit on your hard drive?

If so, you are not alone. I know so many who have great intentions to print their photos or make a book yet get tripped up for one reason or another. But here is the biggest secret I’ve learned in my years designing photos books:

It doesn’t have to be painstakingly designed with perfectly edited photos of beautiful compositions. It just has to be printed.

Do you think your kid will ever pick up a photo book (either now or 20 years from now) and ask why you didn’t add a rich edit to the photo? Or why you didn’t use a stylish font for the page titles? No, not likely.
So let’s forget these hang-ups and get this first photo book done and in your hands. You’ll realize how amazing it feels to actually see your printed photos that document your passion, your work, your progress, your life.

Now that you know my biggest secret, I want to share with you 3 simple steps to completing your first photo book. It starts and ends with one amazing word: AUTOMATION. Ah yes, the power of automation.

3 ways to make a photo book in Lightroom

Specifically, I’m going to show you 3 ways to use automation in the Lightroom (LR) Book Module (LR4 and LR5).
To illustrate my 3 Amazing Automation Actions (I had to get some alliteration in somewhere ;) ), I’m going to use my photos inspired by Courtney’s The Unexpected Everyday to make a book.

1. Smart Collection

Perhaps you’re familiar with Smart Collections, if not, you can read more about them here – Lightroom Smart Collections. When using collections for a photo book, you should already know your book concept, how many photos you want and what type of photos you’re looking for.

With this project, I’m looking for 1-5 great photos illustrating each photo prompt. All of these photos get a keyword tag: “CIUAN.” Then in the Caption field (under Metadata), type in the photo prompt. Here’s how I labeled the photos in my Library Module:
Tips to stream line your photo book creation

Then I’ll create a “CIUAN” Smart Collection that intelligently grabs all of these tagged photos.
photo book tips
 

2. Autoflow

Next step is to automatically place the photos from this Smart Collection into pre-determined layouts in a photo book. Select your smart collection, head to the Book Module and set your book parameters.

Now, you can easily select “Autoflow” which will populate the pages with one click. But there is a smarter way.

Under the pull down menu of the “Auto Layout” tab, select “Edit Auto Layout Preset”. Find the type of page you want on the left and right side of the page. For my book, I’m featuring a singular photo on the left and right page.

photo book tips 2
photo book tips 3

At this point, you may have to adjust some photos or pages. This is simply done by dragging and dropping the photos into the proper page spot.
To change the page layout, highlight the page (in yellow) and use the “Page” pull down menu to find a layout that fits the photos better.

3. Text Style

Finally, let’s add some text. And yes, in the LR Book Module, you can automate text as well. First, for the photos you want to caption with the prompt, highlight the photo box then under the Text panel select “Caption.” Now the photo prompt you typed in the Library Module will automatically appear in your book!

The next step is to highlight the text and establish the proper font style, size, color, and alignment you want. Once your font is set, go to the Type panel (right below the Text panel), the first line says “Text Style Preset.” It’s set to custom but by selecting the pull down menu option “Save Current Settings to Preset” it will save these exact font settings.. I’m calling mine, you got it, “CIUAN.”

how to make a photo book

Once this is done, whenever you want to include text on any additional pages, all you have to do is select this preset and in one click get the text features you want. Couldn’t be easier!

After these basic steps, you are ready to order your book!
photo book with blurb

If you want to see over 25 screenshots and videos on how I made this LR book (and others), join me in my Intro to Photo Book Design Workshop.

It’s your turn
Now, don’t just read these steps and think, “Wow that was helpful!” – I want to see your photo book from Blurb!

Share a screenshot on the Click It Up A Notch facebook page and tag @bookthisproject. I’ll be sharing mine and can’t wait to see yours!

blueline
stacey wiseman Stacey Wiseman – Guest Post
Stacey Wiseman is a wife and mother of two, living in Central Kentucky. Designing photo books blends her architectural experience with her passion for photography. As owner of Book This Project and photo book design instructor at a The Photographer Within, she believes it’s important to capture the moments that define our lives and to print them! To get started with your photo book, she’s sharing her 10 No-Fail Steps to Designing a Photo Book.

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I combined my passion of teaching and photography to create this website. I invite you to take this 30 day challenge - The Unexpected Everyday
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Critique Me – Erica at E. Hagan Photography http://clickitupanotch.com/2014/06/critique-erica-e-hagan-photography/ http://clickitupanotch.com/2014/06/critique-erica-e-hagan-photography/#comments Mon, 02 Jun 2014 15:11:21 +0000 http://clickitupanotch.com/?p=14385 Author information
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I combined my passion of teaching and photography to create this website. I invite you to take this 30 day challenge - The Unexpected Everyday
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Remember:
-Read How to Critique a Photo
-Make a critique sandwich – something positive, something you would have done differently, something positive
-My rule: no improvement tip = deleted comment
-This will benefit the person leaving the photo critique just as much if not more than the person receiving the critique.
-If you would like to have an image critiqued be sure to read How to submit an image for critique.

Thanks to Erica at E. Hagan Photography for submitting the following image.
Settings: ISO 100 | SS 1/125 | f/1.8
E. Hagan Photography

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I combined my passion of teaching and photography to create this website. I invite you to take this 30 day challenge - The Unexpected Everyday
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