Blinkies

By Pam Henrichsen

What are blinkies? Blinkies are one more tool in your camera to help with the exposure of your image. They help you establish how far to go in the image brightening direction. Most SLR cameras have a setting called “highlight warning.” It will make any overexposed areas “flash” or “blink” when you preview your images on your camera’s screen. Most photographers affectionately call this flashing the “blinkies.”

Check your camera’s manual if your preview is not currently set for the blinkies. You may need to activate the “highlight warning” in your settings menu first.

Once you have adjusted your settings, if you are a Nikon user, preview an image and press the up or down button (near the Ok button) until you see the highlights flashing or outlined. If you chose this setting, your camera will remember this setting for the next image you preview. Keep in mind you will only see the blinkies if you have overexposed areas in your image.

Canon users can accomplish the same thing by pressing the “display” or “info” button, depending on the model of your camera, until the blinkies show up on your camera screen while previewing images.

By using this tool and other simple tools that your camera provides you, you can easily adjust your exposure and see how to improve the overall quality of your images.

Pam Henrichsen is a trip leader with Arizona Highways PhotScapes.

Sunny 16 Rule

By Pam Henrichsen

Time to brush up on one of the simplest photo applications. This is very old school and most digital photographers may not even use this concept. However, it is simple and it does work.  The Sunny 16 Rule is a way to meter during the daylight without using your camera meter.

The rule is… if you have a bright sunny day set your aperture to f/16, next set your ISO and shutter speed to the same value – for example if your ISO is 100 your shutter speed will be 1/100; if the ISO is 200 your shutter speed will be 1/200 and so on.

Sunny 16 is a very useful tool for numerous reasons. It is a good way to check and see if your camera has accurate exposure. Try using this method to determine if your camera tends to over expose or under expose your images. Most cameras have a tendency to slightly under expose.

Additionally, unlike the camera metering system, Sunny 16 is based on incident light not reflective light. What does this mean? It means that it is based on the brightness of the light only, not how the light is being reflected off the subject and into the camera. So the Sunny 16 Rule can help you check your camera’s metering to make sure it is not being thrown off.

That’s all there is to it. Pretty simple. It’s a great tool to have in your bag of photographic tricks. Give it a try…or try it again.

Pam Henrichsen is a trip leader with Arizona Highways Photo Workshops.

Life Happens … Even in Photography

Author:  Pam Henrichsen

Today when I started my day I noticed that I had 12,791 photos one my iPhone camera roll – that is totally crazy. But then I stopped to think about why I had so many photos. The answer is – Life.

Just like everyone else my life is very busy and I don’t carry my Nikon DSLR with me every where I go. So when I see something that catches my eye I take a picture. Why not?

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The same rules apply when I am shooting with my iPhone as it does when shooting with my Nikon: composition, rule of thirds, exposure and the all important back up of the photos.  Yes, I don’t have as many exposure options but I can touch the screen to lighten or darken the image. I can control the flash, so the basics are manageable however limited. Composition is always a matter of perspective with either devise. And the rule of thirds is just the rule of thirds. I have my iPhone set to run a backup every few days so my images are safe and most of them live on the cloud.

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In a perfect world, I will try to grab my Nikon when I have the opportunity to do so if I really want to capture the imagine properly. But a lot of times my subject moves, the sun has set or I just do not have access to my Nikon when that special moment presents itself.

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As photographers we are constantly observing everything around us. When we see a shot that excites us, we take that photo. Even if that moment is when you are driving down the street and in the middle of the pavement somethings catches your eye. Stop. Capture that moment because ….

Life happens.

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 Pam Henrichsen is a trip leader with Arizona Highways Photo Workshops.

My iPhone: Great for Scouting That Perfect Shot

Author:  Pam Henrichsen

Earlier this spring I was a trip leader for  Arizona Highways Photo Workshop, Slot Canyons: Natures Sculpted Sandstone, with photographer, Suzanne Mathia. Throughout the week I found as I was looking for my perfect perspective to photograph in the rocky plateau surrounding Lake Powell that my iPhone became a wonderful tool.

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Today most of us carry our smart phones with us no matter where we go. It’s one of my favorite accessories because it has a great camera on it.  My iPhone camera works no matter where I am at. It is a very effective for scouting my location and then framing my subject.

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It gives me a better feel for the detail in my shot. Is this what I am really looking for or is there another angle that I would prefer? What would it look like in black and white?

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Sometimes I am just so excited about what I am shooting that I cannot wait to download my images to share with my friends and family.

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So the next time you are scouting locations, remember to use your other camera. It’s a great tool that you already have with you.

Pam Henrichsen is a trip leader with Arizona Highways Photo Workshops.