This month we kick off What’s App Wednesdays. t’s a blog post each week dedicated to photo apps for photographers. For those that have smart phones and take pictures every day, knowing what to do with those photos after the capture is just as important as taking them. First up, FX Photo Studio a Mac based software app fromMacPhun. MacPhun has been around for awhile and is making great strides in the Instagram and Mac communities.
FX Photo Studio bloomed from theiPhone app that has been among the top iOS photography apps since its release about 4 years ago. Depending on your level of photography, it’s available in both Pro and non-Pro versions with over 170 photo filters and effects. The possibilities are limitless. Today we are focusing on the Mac version software. When you load the software and open it up, you are greeted with a sharp looking interface that is uncluttered and easy to navigate.
The attention is always on your photo allowing you to easily navigate throughout the app while never losing site of your original image. You can see a few of the effects and filters from these screen captures. They have the staples such as B & W, Vignettes, Sketch, etc. Some of the more fun ones I enjoyed were Ancient Canvas, Atlantic Beach and Vintage Blue. What’s great is the horizontal bar on the bottom let’s you preview your image within those filters without having to navigate away from the original image. It take a little time to figure out a system that works best for you each user, but once you see the filters and effects are categorized, you catch on quickly. You are also able to apply the effects to only certain parts of your image.
I enjoy the fact you can either apply a filter and be done, or you can manually adjust and tune to your liking. So it’s perfect for the novice and it’s perfect for the perfectionist. You are able to share quite easily within the app to Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr and Flickr. It can handle large files but if you are looking to have it handle batches of large amounts of photos, it is not quite capable to handle large amounts.
Here are some amazing samples of different :
Tilt Shift + Glendale
Your Best Shot 2012 Contest
Contest Details – Please Read Carefully!
How to enter:
1. Grand Prize (1 winner): Estimated Value: $2000.00
2. Top 12 Runner Ups: Estimated Value: $25.00
- Each top 12 Runner Up will win an 8x8” -14 page Adoramapix photo book with the winning entries displayed
Dates to Know:
The Deadline: March 17, 2013
A team of Adoramapix Judges will then choose the top 25 images based on technical and artistic ability.
The Vote: April 2013
The top 25 images will be posted on the Adoramapix Blog. Adoramapix members will then pick their favorites from the 25 images posted. The top 12 images that receive the most votes will be awarded the Best of 2012 8x8” -14 page Adoramapix Photo Book.
The Winner Announced: May 2013
A team of Adoramapix Judges will choose the Grand Prize Winner out of the top 12 Best of 2012 winners.
The Winner will be announced via our Blog first, followed by Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus and a mail out.
Official Rules: All 2013 General Adoramapix Contest Rules Apply
*You will be disqualified if you enter more than one image. If you are not a fan of these contests, please don’t participate. We’ll continue to try to find new contests and new prizes that will make it fun and interesting to be a part of the Adoramapix community. Thank you for your support.
2013 RULES AND REGULATIONS
1. Sponsor: Adoramapix (the “Sponsor”).
2. The entry procedures for each contest are announced on Facebook and here on our blog.
3. Adoramapix will not verify receipt of entries. Incomplete entries are void. Adoramapix is not responsible for entries that are lost, late, misdirected, incomplete, incomprehensible, illegible, undeliverable or delayed. Facebook entries will be deemed to have been submitted by the authorized account holder of the Facebook account at the time of the entry.
4. Our contests are generally open to anyone who is at least 18 years of age and who does not reside in an area where such contests are void by law. In cases where the contest or giveaway is promoted on Facebook, you need a free Facebook account to be eligible. Persons who have had their Facebook account blocked by Adoramapix are not eligible.
5. Employees (or their immediate families) of Adoramapix, or any subsidiary are not eligible to win our contests or giveaways.
6. Unless otherwise noted, the termination date for eligibility is the final day at Midnight EST.
7. All prize information including prize value is listed with each contest announcement. In each contest or giveaway, we reserve the right to substitute a prize of equal or greater value in the event that the original promised prize becomes unavailable. Some prizes may be awarded via gift certificate.
8. Adoramapix is not responsible for (1) cancellations, postponements, or delays; (2) Acts of God, war, terrorism, government regulation, disaster, fire, strikes, civil disorder, or other similar causes beyond the control of Adoramapix, their affiliated, parent, and subsidiary companies, advertising and promotional agencies and their immediate assigns, making it inadvisable, illegal, impossible, or impractical to continue the Contest or to perform under these Rules. Adoramapix makes no warranty, guarantee, or representation of any kind concerning any prize. Adoramapix reserves the right to modify, suspend, terminate or cancel the Contest, as appropriate, due to any other reason beyond the control of Adoramapix.
9. The prizes have no cash value. It may not be exchanged for cash.
10. Content Restrictions: You may not submit or post anything that is offensive or violates any third party’s rights. For example, your Contest Entry must not contain or reference any of the following:
• Nudity or lewd, vulgar, indecent or obscene images (as determined by Sponsor’s sole discretion);
• Material that violates or infringes another’s rights, including but not limited to privacy, publicity or intellectual property rights; ( we have obtained permission of all artists pinned on our board, you may repin any on our boards or uplaod your own)
• Material that is copyrighted, trademarked, protected by trade secrets or otherwise subject to a third party’s proprietary rights, including privacy and publicity rights, unless you are the owner of such rights or have permission from their rightful owner to post the material;
• Depiction of defamatory statements (including but not limited to words or symbols that are widely considered offensive to individuals of a certain race, ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation or socioeconomic group);
• Third-party trademarks, names or logos; or
• Material that is unlawful, in violation of or contrary to the laws or regulations in any country, state or province where the Contest Entry is created.
Sponsor may, in its sole discretion, disqualify any Contest Entry that does not comply with these Content Restrictions or that Sponsor otherwise deems to be inappropriate in its sole discretion. In the event of disqualification, the Contest Entry will not be judged or considered for a prize.
11. The winner does not have to be present at the time of announcement unless otherwise noted.
12. Winners automatically grant the use of their name and likeness in the promotion of this and other Adoramapix contests.
13. Winners are responsible for applicable state or federal taxes as well as shipping and handling. If you live outside the US you are responsible for any taxes, custom duties and shipping in the event you win.
14. While the contests are generally open to residents of any country, Adoramapix is not liable for any customs duties or delays. Proof of shipment to the winner’s address shall end any obligation to deliver any prize under these rules. Residents outside of the USA can either claim prize with a U.S. mail address or can request a gift certificate from Adorama of equal or lesser value to the Grand Prize.
15. Adoramapix is not responsible for issues regarding Internet access, Facebook downtime, bounced email or any other technical malfunction beyond its immediate control.
16. There may be only one prize winner per household every 60 days.
17. All Adoramapix contests and giveaways are subject to all federal, state, provincial, and local laws and void where prohibited. It is your responsibility to refrain from entry if our contests or giveaways are illegal in your jurisdiction. If you are declared a winner but contests and giveaways like these are illegal in your jurisdiction, your prize will be forfeited and given to a runner-up.
18. The photograph and or photo book, in its entirety, must be original material captured by the Contest entrant. By entering the Contest, entrant represents, acknowledges and warrants that the submitted image is an original work by contestant and does not infringe on the copyrights, trademarks, moral rights, rights of privacy/publicity or intellectual property rights of any person or entity, and that no other party has any right, title, claim or interest in the photograph.
19. Copyright: By entering the Contest, Photographer will retain all rights to photograph he/she submits. By entering photography contests, photographer hereby grants Adoramapix (sponsor) (1) a nonexclusive, unconditional, unrestricted, worldwide, irrevocable ,royalty-free license to reproduce, reformat, adapt, creative derivative works, distribute, transmit, display, make available and perform the photographs photographer submits to Adoramapix (sponsor) in and/or through any and all medium or media, now known or hereinafter developed or discovered, and (2) the right to use your name, city and state in promotions and other publications. Sponsors’ use of the submissions may include without limitation, advertising, promotion and marketing for this year and subsequent years. Authorized Parties will not be required to pay any additional consideration or seek any additional approval in connection with such use. Additionally, by entering, each entrant grants to Adoramapix the unrestricted right to use all statements made in connection with the Contest, and pictures or likenesses of Contest entrants, or choose not to do so, at their sole discretion. Authorized Parties will not be required to pay any additional consideration or seek any additional approval in connection with such use.
20. IN NO EVENT WILL ANY CONTEST ENTITY BE RESPONSIBLE OR LIABLE FOR ANY DAMAGES OR LOSSES OF ANY KIND, INCLUDING DIRECT, INDIRECT, INCIDENTAL, CONSEQUENTIAL OR PUNITIVE DAMAGES ARISING OUT OF YOUR PARTICIPATION IN THE CONTEST, ANY PRIZES WON, YOUR ACCESS TO OR USE OF ANY OF SPONSOR’S WEBSITE OR THE FACEBOOK WEBSITE (INCLUDING SPONSOR’S FACEBOOK PAGE) OR THE THIRD-PARTY APPLICATION, OR THE ACCESSING, UPLOADING, DOWNLOADING AND/OR PRINTING OF ANY MATERIAL AVAILABLE ON SAID SITE. WITHOUT LIMITING THE FOREGOING, EVERYTHING ON THESE WEB SITES IS PROVIDED “AS IS” WITHOUT WARRANTY OF ANY KIND, EITHER EXPRESSED OR IMPLIED, INCLUDING BUT NOT LIMITED TO, THE IMPLIED WARRANTIES OR CONDITIONS OF MERCHANTABILITY, FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE OR NON-INFRINGEMENT. SOME JURISDICTIONS MAY NOT ALLOW THE LIMITATION OR EXCLUSION OF LIABILITY FOR INCIDENTAL OR CONSEQUENTIAL DAMAGES OR EXCLUSIONS OF IMPLIED WARRANTIES OR CONDITIONS SO SOME OF THE ABOVE LIMITATIONS OR EXCLUSIONS MAY NOT APPLY TO YOU.
21. By entering the Contest, you acknowledge that you have read, understand and will abide by these official rules. All issues and questions concerning the construction, validity, interpretation and enforceability of these official rules, or the rights and obligations of you or Sponsor in connection with the Contest, shall be governed by and construed in accordance with, the laws of the State of North Carolina, without regard to the conflict of laws principles. All dollar amounts referred to in these official rules are in U.S. dollars.
Snow can be tricky to shoot in, there’s so much white and when the sun comes out the light reflects all around making it difficult to expose properly. There is also the cold temperatures to deal with, making sure you are dressed warmly and that the moisture doesn’t damage your camera.
But the snow also makes for some wonderful photo opportunities, so there’s no excuse to not get out there and take some great photos of your kids!
Keeping your Camera Dry
One problem with shooting in adverse weather is keeping your camera safe. When shooting on cold, snowy days it is important that you keep your camera dry. You may want to invest in a specially designed camera sleeve, or in a pinch you could used a plastic bag with a hole cut in it for the lens to keep moisture (or an errant snowball!) off of your camera.
You also want to avoid condensation build up on your camera, so seal it in a plastic bag before you return inside. The condensation will form on the outside of the bag instead of the camera as it returns to room temperature.
Metering and Exposure
Taking photos in the snow can be a little tricky at first, there’s just so much white reflecting light back at you. Your camera’s meter tries to compensate by under exposing and you end up with dull, grey looking photos.
I prefer to change the camera’s metering mode to spot metering and expose off of my subject, I may lose some detail in the snow but I would rather see the detail in the subject I am shooting. Alternatively you could adjust your exposure compensation to over-expose slightly.
Capture the Wonder and Fun
Whereas adults seem to bore quickly of the snow and only notice how cold it is out, children are constantly fascinated by it. Step back and capture images of your children tirelessly playing: whether they are building a snowman, throwing snowballs, catching snowflakes on their tongues or simply watching the snow fall to the ground.
There are a multitude of different things you could photograph your children doing in the snow, from different angles. Why not try positioning yourself above them to take a photo looking down on them making a snow angel? Crouch down to capture them digging in the snow, step back to photograph a sledding scene or get in close for photographs of snow covered hats, gloves or eyelashes.
AdoramaPix Contributor: Rebecca Sims is a British transplant living in the bustling city of Chicago with her husband and son after the three years that they spent living together in Germany.
Her blog, Bumbles & Light, is a place where she shares her love of photography, writing, cooking, and creativity.
I wish I could tell you that every photo book I’ve done has been a wondrous masterpiece – inspiring the amazement and admiration of all those who are fortunate to gaze upon it. But admittedly even I make mistakes sometimes (gasp!). Honestly, I don’t think I would feel qualified to write my photo book review blog if I didn’t hit a few bumps along the way (and learned from those mistakes). It enables me to share my experiences with you and hopefully I can help point out potential issues ahead of time. My blog is all about encouraging everyone to make a photo book and to not be intimidated to give it a go. I’m a firm believer in trying everything at least once (okay correction – most things at least once). I bet when you see your photos in a designed book (or when that special someone gushes over the professional-looking gift you made them) you will be quite addicted to photo books as I am and will want to make more and more! I have repurposed these tips from an earlier blog post, but this time with AdoramaPix in mind.
Here are some of my best tips. Before you hit that order button make sure to go through this checklist!
1) Consistency – typically I advocate using no more than one to two font styles in your books for a cohesive look. Go back and make sure that you’ve been consistent in both font size and type. I usually use one font for the main narrative, and a different font for the titles. I have accidentally used a different font on a couple pages of a book before, but luckily they didn’t look that noticeably different (except to me because I knew!) Had I checked more closely I would have caught it. When using AdoramaPix, I just copy the same text box and paste it on the new page so I know that the size and font have remained the same without having to reselect any settings. AdoramaPix’s text tool also automatically remembers your last font and size selected, so it makes it easy to be consistent. Change your mind about the font you want to use? With AdoramaPix, you can select more than one text box and make changes to all the text boxes on that page with a single action. Just make sure to go back and double check that your global font change hasn’t altered your layouts unexpectedly;
2) Alignment- are your photo boxes and elements aligned properly? There are two features I recommend checking in AdoramaPix. If you hover over an image, you’ll see an “X” and “Y” coordinate. The “X” represents the horizontal coordinate while the “Y” represents the vertical coordinate. So, if you want to make sure two photos are aligned on the left, make sure the X numbers are the same. If you want to make sure the photos line up at their tops, make sure the Y numbers are the same. You can also turn on the “moved objects will snap to grid lines” feature which will make sure the photos align with the grid when you lay them out;
3) Margins – did you put anything too close to the edge? Most programs have guides that show you a safe zone. Anything inside those borders will print, but anything outside may get cut off when the book is printed and bound. Sometimes this safe zone is rather generous, but the printers have to have some leeway. If you have chosen one of your photos to be printed as a full bleed (where your photo fills an entire page or spread) make sure there’s nothing on the edges of the photo that is essential. If there is, then you may want to think about making the photo a bit smaller than the entire page (and add a background) so you’re guaranteed no image loss. When you check the book preview the software will give you a warning if you have elements too close to the edge so you can go back and make any edits before ordering;
4) Gutter – “mind the gap” – similar to #3, typically I suggest to folks not to place anything important in the center of the spread, especially text or people’s faces. With AdoramaPix however, there is no split or gutter, so you’re free to design across the center of the spread which is great if you want to do a full page bleed (where a single photo spans both pages of a spread). Still, whether or not you want to put someone’s face in the middle of the spread is a personal preference, as you may not want to have the focal point of your image appear with a crease down the center;
5) Spelling and typos – use the software’s spell check where possible (AdoramaPix’s is built-in and you’ll see a red line appear under a word the software doesn’t recognize). If it’s not available, copy and paste your text in your own word processor (like Microsoft Word) to double check your text. For more on the right way to add large amounts of text from an external source such as a document you already typed in Microsoft Word or Word Perfect, check out the link. I can’t stress this enough – if you choose to paste directly from Word or an e-mail, chances are you will also copy some formatting code that will be “invisible” to you and will not show up as an error in the preview, but will only show up after you get the printed book – eek! It also may be helpful when possible to have someone else check your narrative or captions – spell check won’t catch errors such as missing words for example;
6) Photo Quality – AdoramaPix has a photo quality indicator that pops up telling you your photo is not of sufficient resolution, but keep in mind that it’s not an indication of whether your photo is too light or too dark or whether your subject has red eye for example. So make sure to scan through your pages to see if any photo stands out in a bad way, or appears off in comparison to the other photos. Sometimes you can’t tell a photo is a bit off (such as one photo being considerably darker than the others), until that photo is put along side another photo. I have often gone back after running the preview to adjust some photos and re-upload them to the book. Some photo companies have some photo editing tools within the program, but many do not or they are very limited. Err on the side of brightening your photos – most photos end up printing darker than what you see on your screen (it’s hard for printed matter to match the luminosity of our computer screens). Don’t have post-processing software? Check out my posts on free photo editing tools here.
So, there you have it! Be sure to run the photo book software preview before you order while keeping these tips in mind!
Are you new to photo books? You won’t want to miss my “How To” series on photo books. This is the best place to start and has my best tips! Happy Photobooking!