Did you know that we have started our own Instagram hashtag…..#thephotoclubsecrets? And that you can

now ‘follow’ hashtags (so that anything posted with that hashtag will show up on your Instagram feed?).  If you head to an Instagram page HERE you can follow us for lots more regular advice and ideas. 

In this week’s blog post we bring you some of our most recent Secrets….three of our most popular ‘How I Took This Shot’ images and advice.  We hope you find these useful – if you have any questions about specific photography techniques then let us know …all questions are welcome no matter how basic you might think they are.  We can guarantee we have been asked them before!

Secret Number 1: The Manual Focus Blur

This image from a recent pregnancy shoot in the desert in Dubai was taken towards sunset, you can see the sun is getting lower in the sky. I had already taken lots of photos of these two twirling and dancing on top of the sand dune, so wanted to try something different. I switched my camera lens to manual and purposely created a blurry image.

Nikon d750 + Sigma Art 35mm ISO 200 F5 1/1600 seconds -0.3 exposure compensation Operating in manual / Spot metering / Auto white balance / Switched lens to manual focus

Secret Number 2: The Hazy Reflection Shot

This image was taken on a beach in the UK. The sun was setting and the sky was full of hazy clouds. I knew that if I shot this image ‘correctly exposed’ it would blow out the beautiful sky and its reflection so I decided to go for a slight silhouette effect. 

I set my aperture high enough to capture both the dad and his son but not so high that the background was super sharp and distracting. I then set my shutter speed pretty fast so as to not over expose my subjects. 

I crouched down to ensure my composition was correct and included enough of the beautiful foreground and shot away as the little boy and his dad explored the beach.

Canon 5D mark iv + 50mm 1.4 Lens ISO 400 F6.3  1/2500 shutter speed

Secret Number 3: The F16 Palm Tree Sunflare

F16, f16, f16. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ Or: the higher your aperture....the more defined your sunflare. ⠀⠀⠀⠀

⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ The next time you spot the sun glaring invitingly through the palm trees, point up, switch to spot metering, set your focus point to the tree trunk (so that your camera meters the light from the dark areas of the scene rather than the bright parts), crank up your f-stop to the highest it will go (on my Nikon d750 that is f16). If you're in Aperture Priority then your shutter speed will slow down (making sure its over 1/60 seconds for a handheld, in focus shot that isn't blurry). ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ Play with your position so that you can see the light refracting through your lens.... and start experimenting. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀


Nikon d750 + Sigma Art 35mm lens  Manual mode, spot metering  ISO 100  Aperture: F16 Shutter speed: 1/60 seconds ⠀

We hope you enjoyed this post and gained some useful insights. For more photo club secrets remember to follow the hashtag #thephotoclubsecrets on instagram.

Natalie and Lianne


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