Thursday, October 20, 2011

An argument for manual...

Sometimes people ask me why I bother setting a manual exposure on my camera instead of just using the automatic settings. They say that cameras these days are so intelligent, that automatic is as good as manual. But I disagree... so I thought I would make a little illustrated argument here for why I think that manual is the way to go.

Using the little green box (the automatic setting) on your camera is allowing the camera to make all of the decisions for you... which is great SOME of the time, when it makes the right decisions... but it just as often as not makes the wrong decisions. Just to give you an idea of the amount of decisions that it takes out of your hand, the camera chooses your ISO setting, aperature, shutter speed, focal point, and whether or not to use flash. Here is a photo where I let my camera make all the "right" choices for me this evening. All these pictures are straight out of camera, and not edited at all.

On automatic:


This is a smoke tree shrub that I have planted on my back porch. The leaves are changing for fall, but since the flash went off, the colors are unnaturally bright while the background is dark and dull. The dusty miller plant right behind it is quite in focus as well.

On manual, I made all of my choices with regard to ISO, aperature, shutter speed, focal point and chose not to fire the flash (I NEVER use flash as a general hard and fast rule). I focused on the rain droplets on the leaves of the smoke tree, which were all but lost by the automatic settings. I wanted the dusty miller to be visible, but in soft focus so that the vibrant colors stood out on the smoke tree. The light is evenly diffused throughout the photograph.

Using Manual exposure, the same picture taken within a moment of the other one.


So what do you think? Do you find one more pleasing to the eye than the other?

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

I want more followers!!!

This is a completely useless post, but I just realized that on November 17th, I will have my 1 year blogiversary.... and you know what I want for my present? To hit 50 followers. That is my humble wish. So I would like suggestions... what do you think I should do to attract more followers? I could do a giveaway for a custom sewn outfit.... I could do a giveaway for a party package... I could maybe make some tutorials that might draw in new readers? I could try being a little more interesting? So I would like to know.... what do you think I need to do in order to gain some new followers?

TeePee Kid's Play Tent

I had the pleasure of testing an exciting new pattern for Little Lizard King which was unlike any of the patterns I had tested for her! It is for a TeePee Kid's Play Tent! This was a very fun project because my husband got to get involved by helping drill holes in the poles etc, and really, it was a very easy and quick sew! I love the fact that it folds up and you can just throw it in the corner of a room or in the closet, and it is easy for the kids to get out and play with by themselves!

So today we tried out photo shoot and it didn't exactly go as planned, for several reasons... the first reason was because I had intended this shoot just for Evelyn and I sewed her a new dress from Little Lizard King's Brooke Pattern but once the big girls got wind of that, they decided that they wanted to be involved also, since they love the teepee so much. Since I didn't have time to sew them coordinating sets in LLK patterns, Mylie wore an apron dress that I had made her from this LLK pattern, the Apron Knot Dress and Laina just wore a tiered skirt that I had sewed her quite a long time ago. And since we are talking about patterns, Evelyn is also wearing a pair of knit ruffles, like these Ruffle Pants or Capris.

And now on to the shots! The next reason this didn't go well was because we were aiming for the golden hour to shoot in, but since we had to go after one set of dance classes but before another set of dance classes, we ended up just about missing the sun setting... so we didn't catch any yummy light, but the kids still had fun.

They were having a little tea party complete with cupcakes and milk!

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