Chris talks about a touchy subject in photography this week -- how to clean your camera. It's something he always gets questions on, and everyone has an opinion. On the outside, just use a damp cloth and wipe it down. But Chris just uses whatever he has. The lens is the one part of the camera he uses a microfiber cloth to wipe it with. Any soft cotton will actually work, but microfiber gives it plenty of TLC. Other tools include a lens brush and air blower. What about a lens pen? Chris says they work, but you can get the same results with the microfiber cloth.
Today's photo myth is about the iPhone camera app. People think it doesn't do much, but Chris says that with iOS 8 you can do quite a lot and Chris uses it a lot. In the edit feature, there's a dial icon that gives you light, color, and b/w conversion. You can also drill down into adjustments and get exposure, white balance, and other features like saturation, color, and cast. It's giving you professional control that Chris really likes. And it's non destructive, so it doesn't change the original image.
Chris wants to bust the myth of the camera bag accessories and the sun filter. Chris says that sun filters will usually limit the visual spectrum and doesn't really do much for the image other than cut out ultraviolet and infrared light. Those were very valuable and improved your pictures when shooting with film. But when you shoot digital, it just doesn't apply, since IR and UV filters are already built into your camera. So it's counterproductive to buy them.
Chris want to bust the zoom myth when your traveling. The more you zoom the less light you get, so the camera deals with an image that is both darker and slower. And often you will end up shooting wide open, which doesn't always perform best. Most pros use smaller zooms and primes that don't zoom at all. A smaller, more compact zoom will do best when traveling.
Leo wants to know what Chris does when he travels and what laptop he uses. Chris says he uses a MacBook Air. It's nice and compact and works great on airline tray tables. Since his has an i7 processor, it really does a great job managing his photos. It may take awhile to render, but it works good enough. In his book "1 Hour 1000 Pics", he talks about how to use your computer to manage and weed out your images. It's more about your discipline.
Chris joins us to talk about SD cards. Leo says that he prefers to use smaller cards just in case of failure. Chris agrees, saying that he usually uses 8-16GB cards. He hasn't seen many cards fail either, but you can't be too careful. Chris also says to wait a second or two before taking the card out because cameras may be writing to it as you open the door and pulling it could corrupt the card.
Chris wants to bust the Zoom Myth. There's a big debate about whether to zoom into a shot, or walk up to the subject to get the shot. Chris says zooming doens't change perspective. Walking up, by contrast, does change perspective, and you can prove it by taking the same picture with both technique. You can change your perspective by moving around, but Chris says if you explore a subject and walk around it, you'll see more than just perspective, you'll see light. Chris says that composition is important too, and you can learn it best with a 50mm lens, aka the "nifty fifty."
Chris wants to bust the myth that you have to have light coming onto your subject from the front to get a good shot. Sometimes the best images have light coming from behind (called backlighting). One reason why people don't like it is that it makes the image look flat, killing the depth. So consider moving the light to the side. The image will become more interesting and you'll see some cool reflections on your light (called hairlight). It can silhouette the subject.
Chris uses Lightroom and he has ever since the first beta. He also teaches Lightroom and has created a video workshop at DiscoverLightroom.com. He also has different price levels depending on which kind of photographer you see yourself as. There's 6 1/2 hours of instruction and Chris is even working on a new app which will cover it. Leo says that to do something more advanced than just organizing your photos, what can you use? Chris says that LIghtroom does far more than just organizing your photos.
Chris wants to bust the myth that you don't need to stabilize because the camera will do it all for you. The fact is, it won't. But here are several tips to get a more stable picture: