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Archives for March 2016

While a professional camera is a great asset to have when taking photos, it seems that I never have it when I really need to take a picture. Instead, I have what every other person has: a smartphone. Just a few years ago, the idea of taking a nice photo on your phone’s camera would have been laughed at, but now many smartphones rival with point and shoot cameras. Since Kathy and I both have iPhones, and aren’t too familiar with Android devices, this guide will be centered on iPhone camera usage (sorry Android fans!). My goal is to show you new and creative ways to use your iPhone’s camera in ways you never thought possible.

Some of the aspects of iPhone photography that I’m hoping to explore with you in separate blog posts:

  • Time-Lapse: This is a form of video that is compiled of photos taken at timed intervals. These work best if you leave the phone in one place.
  • Slow-Motion: This is pretty self explanatory. Once activated, press the red button and the phone will begin recording at a normal speed. After the video is taken, you can adjust the length and location of the slow motion part by using your fingers. Once you adjust to your liking, press done in the upper right hand corner. It will save in the camera roll.
  • Photo: There are lots of components to taking a nice photos. For starters, you need to focus on something in the photo. In order to do this, tap what you want to focus on. From there, you can raise your finger up and down on the screen to adjust the exposure (how much light you let in). Don’t be afraid to try different exposures and and angles to get some new things. It’s also a good idea to take the photos horizontally, rather than vertically.
  • Pano: This is when you can take a photo that is elongated. You have to hold your phone vertically and point at what you want to photograph. When ready to take the photo, tap the white button at the bottom and move the phone slowly continuously to the right. Make sure to follow the directions on the iPhone while taking the photo.

There are two other camera modes in your iPhone: video and square. However, we won’t be posting separate blogs about them. Here are just a few things to remember about them:

  • Video: When taking a video, I recommend taking the video horizontally, rather than vertically. We see things horizontally, not vertically. Our eyes are next to each other, not on top of each other! Plus, when uploading the video to any video hosting website, a vertical video has annoying bars on the sides, whereas a horizontal video takes the entire screen.
  • Square: This is just like the photo setting, but the photo is square instead of rectangular. This can be used when uploading photos to Instagram, but I would recommend taking the photos in photo mode, then editing them later.

 

This is only the beginning to iPhone photography. There are countless apps to adjust the photo, but I’ll get into that after I show you the the first step to iPhone photography: taking the picture! So keep your eye out for some new blogs about iPhone Photography, coming soon! In the mean time, check out some of our favorite photos we took with our iPhones!

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Getting your senior photos taken is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, and we want to make the best of it! We want you to look the best that you can and have the session be as free of stress as possible. We can do our best to make sure everything is prepared and working on our end, but here are some tips of what YOU can do to make your senior photos go as smoothly as possible guys!

 

First of all, we know you’re nervous. We know that a lot of guys don’t like posing for photos as much as girls, so we will try to hurry and make it painless for you. One of the main differences between photographing senior girls and senior guys is posing, and we understand this. We won’t make you uncomfortable and put you in any awkward, feminine positions, relax!

In the days prior to your photo session, here’s what you can to in order to make photo day go as smoothly as possible.

  1. Find a style
    1. Typically when we photograph guys, they care far less than girls about how they look. We know that some of you are only getting your photos taken for the sake of your mother, but please still come prepared. In order to make mom happy, we want you to look comfortable, and your best. Dress in a style that is comfortable and normal for you, but dress nicely. If your style is sloppy or you have no idea, ask your mom, a female friend, or a girlfriend to help you prepare.
  2. Clean your clothes
    1. Make sure the clothes you want to wear are clean and hung on a hanger, or folded. Please don’t quickly stuff all of your clothes into a gym bag, it will make your clothes wrinkled, and it won’t look good on camera. If you’re feeling especially prepared for your photo session, hang outfits together on a hook. This way, you won’t have to dig through clothes to find your matching shirt.
    2. Additionally, prepare any props you want to bring. Some good ideas for props are sports uniforms, equipment, musical instruments, and items that relate to any activities you do. For example, bring your dancing shoes if you love tap dancing!
  3. Shave
    1. Coming to your session cleanly shaven will make your photos look better. Sure, we can retouch your photos, but it won’t quite look the same. Do both of us a favor, if you have facial hair that mom hates, just do us a favor and shave it. It will grow back, don’t worry.
  4. Hair
    1. Don’t make any crazy hair changes in the coming days before a photo session. Shaving your head or dyeing your hair before a photo shoot doesn’t look good, we promise. If you do, you’ll look back at your photos and ask yourself “What was I thinking?”
    2. Also, guys with long hair, keep your hair out of your eyes! If necessary, get a trim a few days before a session.

Now that you are prepared in the days coming up to your photo session, here’s what you can do on the day of your photo session!

  1. Be well rested
    1. The night before you have your photos taken, we want you to look well rested. There is only so much photo shop can do, and we don’t want you to look half-asleep in all your photos. We also don’t want to deal with a grump either, which leads us to our next point…
  2. Have a positive attitude!
    1. On the day of your photos, we don’t want to feel awkward while you and mom are irritated with each other, giving the death eye to each other.
  3. Be Punctual!
    1. Being on time to your appointment is crucial! Prepare your clothes the day before, this way, you don’t have to rush to find your favorite shirt the moments before it’s time to leave, and you don’t have the disappoint of finding that it’s dirty. Plus, arriving early gives us time to plan the session a little better. We can decide what to where with which backdrops and so on.
  4. Be Yourself!
      1. These senior photos are meant to capture who you are in your final year of high school. Bring props that show what you’re into, like instruments, sports gear, and whatever else you want. One of my favorite examples of this is Milo. Milo got his typical senior photos done in a suit and tie here in the studio. While these two photos are nice, I like the photos where he’s doing what he loves. A few months ago, I took pictures of Milo and my friends while they played air soft. Kathy didn’t come along, as this wasn’t an official photo session, but I think the real reason is that she is a bit of a chicken! Anyway, these bottom two photos show much more of who he is than the top two. So don’t be afraid to show us what you enjoy. Kathy and I love trying new things and I promise that we will work with you in order to photograph what you want!

     

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Need help deciding what to do for your senior pictures? Here are some helpful tips.

 

Clothing

There isn’t a limit to a number of clothing changes you can bring at Photography By K, so bring lots of options to choose from. While you may not end up wearing all of your outfit changes, it’s a good idea to bring extras to help us match your clothing to different backgrounds and surroundings.

Place all of your outfits together on hangers. Make sure that your items are ironed and ready to go. Change quickly, because less time changing means more time for pictures. The more pictures we get the better, because you will have more photo choices later.

Make sure that you are comfortable in your clothes and that they flatter you. You’ll like how you look in photos much more when you’re relaxed and comfortable. Don’t wear clothes that will make you self-conscious. For example, if you aren’t comfortable with bare arms, avoid wearing sleeveless, cap-sleeve, and tank top shits, as they make arms look fuller.

Bring a variety of colors and styles. Bring some casual and dressy clothes, as well as some in between. If you feel comfortable in dresses, bring some! They photograph well and will give you more photo choices to choose from.

Watch out for large logos…when changing positions, the words rarely match up, and sometimes create interesting new words that you might not want in your portrait. Finally, avoid stripes and plaid. Busy patterns don’t photograph as well as solid ones.

 

Shoes

Ladies, bring heels! Whatever style, casual or dressy, they make you stand out. You’ll look fashionable in them and will love the way they make you look. Now, that’s not saying you can’t wear flats too. They can work really well when partnered with the right outfit.

 

Makeup

Well-done makeup is one of the best things you can do for your session. It can even out your skin and help you look even more like a model. Bring along powder, to help curb shine mid-session, and don’t forget your lipstick or lipgloss for touch-ups along the way. If you don’t typically wear makeup, call us and we can give you a great referral for a local makeup artist.

Also, bring hair ties, bobby pins, and hairspray. We want your hair to look it’s best during the shoot, and having some of these will give a quick fix if your hair isn’t cooperating.

 

Nails

We can’t say this enough, get your nails done! Your nails will be visible in your senior photos, and if they’re chipped it will distract from you. Try to stick with basic or natural tones, since not all colors will match all of your outfits.

Props

Bring props that show who you are! If you’re into sports, bring the equipment, like a soccer ball, basketball, or track shoes. Bring your uniform, the instrument you play, and some other activity related items.

Most importantly of all is don’t be afraid to be yourself! These photos capture who you are in your senior year. Bring what you feel shows who you are. Don’t be afraid to wear something that is a bit out of the ordinary. For example, check out Kashvi’s traditional Indian chaniya choli. Don’t be afraid to be unique!

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So, as you probably guessed by the title of this blog, real estate season is around the corner! One of my favorite parts of working at a photography studio is taking photos of houses. To me, it’s so much fun to come into a house and take photos that reveal the true beauty of a home. However, there is only so much beauty I can showcase in the photos without your help. In order to make your house look its best, here are some things you can do before my arrival to make your house look amazing in the listing photos:

  1. Less is more

Yes, I realize this one might sound a bit cliché, but it rings true. For example, clear countertops make the kitchen look so much more clean and clutter-free, not to mention bigger as well. Put your coats and shoes away too! Plus, it’s important to give the potential buyer a “blank slate”, or a generic room that they can easily imagine themselves living in. If you include too many personal touches, like photos, it makes it hard for them to imagine themselves and their belonging in the room. So, get rid of as much as you can in order to make the room as general as possible and get rid of clutter!

  1. Clean

Even just a quick speed-cleaning, you’d be surprised how much sweeping the floor and wiping the countertops can do! It helps get any filth off that may show in photos. One more important thing to do is clean windows, mirrors, and electronic screens! Children are especially dirty creatures, so they get smudge things very quickly. On a similar note, make sure to turn off any electronic screens when we are at your house.

  1. Lighting

As any photographer will tell you, lighting is important for any kind of photography. When we photograph your house, we bring flashes with us, but the natural light looks much better. So, if you have a decent view, open the curtains or blinds! Also, remember to turn on any lights in the room we are photographing too. It gives the photo a much more comfy look. Make sure to check the bulbs before we come to your house.

  1. Pets

If you have a pet, you know how messy they can be! We love pets too (both Kathy and I have dogs), but potential buyers may not. Before we come over, make sure to put their belongings, like bowls and toys, away. Don’t forget about outside as well! Also, take a lint roller over any furniture their hair may be on. Finally, please keep your dogs out of the photos! After all, Fido isn’t for sale! If possible, have them in a crate or kennel, or keep them in confined to a particular room.

  1. Yardwork

We all know the importance of curb appeal! We want potential buyers to get the best impression of your home possible, so it’s important to landscape! Remember to mow your lawn, trim the shrubs, clear the leaves and spider webs away from eaves and door frames. Remember to move any hoses and toys out of sight! Lastly, we will ask you to move your car from the drive and close your garage door while we take photos outside.

So there you have it! While we could go into detail about all the little nooks and crannies possible to clean, we think you get the idea. We hope that you take this guide and use it to your full advantage in order to have the most beautiful and spotless house possible in your photos so it will come off the market quickly!

– G

 

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