Playing With Matches – A Burning Tutorial (A Photography Project)

Burn Match! Burn! (by udijw)It might be just me, but I love fire. I did a little survey and 5 out of 5 photogs I checked with are little pyros too. Maybe it is part of the requirements of the trade. And maybe we’re all still small kids who get a buzz from a little fire.

This is why I decided to create a small startup guide for shooting matches – feel free to add/comment and improve. The more ideas we throw into this, the better this guide will be.

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3 Cool Photography Halloween Hacks

pumpkinface (by minipixel)Yea I know, Halloween is almost a month away, but if you’re gonna do something fancy, you’d better start preparing.

Here are three completely safe Halloween photography Hacks.

Between making your own pumpkin, cutting a hole in your body and bringing a full Paparazzi band to the party there is no way you’ll get tricked. But, you have to start preparing.

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Create Great Panning Photographs Without Moving Your Camera

SPRING SPIN Panning is a photographic technique that provides great separation of subject from background.

The technique is very simple in theory, but takes some practice to perfect.

Here is how it works, you set your camera to a relatively low shutter speed.  Say 1/80 or 1/40 of a second. Next you find a subject that is moving from one side of the frame to the other. Here comes the tricky part. While keeping the subject in a fixed part of the frame (and you do that by panning the lens from side to side) click the shutter.

If you did every thing correctly, you’ll end up with a sharp subject and blurred background. This technique takes a lot of practice with the following focus:

  1. Finding the exact correct moment to click the shutter is not always trivial.
  2. You’ll need to avoid any vertical movement – this will create blur in the subject as well. 
  3.  You’ll have to be in precise sync with the moving speed of your subject, to keep it sharp while blurring the background.

This is why DIYP labs developed several techniques to get panning pictures without ever moving your camera.

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Give ‘Em A Spin – A Fun Family Photography Project

Give 'Em A Spin - A Fun Family Photography ProjectUPDATE: Hey this is fun, however (as some commenters indicated), it may be risky to young joint if you’re spinning to fast. Holding your loved one under the elbow is safer.

This is by far one of the most fun family projects ever featured on DIYP. (Oh yea, I said this on the title).

We all know what kids like best – spinning. The only thing that kids love even more than spinning is sharing the spinning pleasure with a family member spin Dad till he passes out.

Fortunately for us photogs, spinning creates a great panning like effect. But wait how can you spin and take the image, I mean both hands are holding your precious one.

Reader Mr Din has figure out the secret. Learn how to spin and photograph your kid in 5 easy steps.

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The DIY Light Table – A Weekend Project


Here’s a great project for a weekend. The DIY Light Table, courtesy of Félix Ménard (Flickr).

The idea behind the light table is simple. Things look really great if the light is passing through them. As opposed to light being reflected off them. This is why slides look so good, this is why we love vitrage windows in churches.

A light table is the perfect way to inspect slides, negs and to do some really interesting art.

This project by Felix uses an old desktop (from when desktops were actually made from wood and did not have any chips in them), however, a similar project can be made with more temporary means which are great for a weekend project. I’ll discuss this towards the end.

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DIY Photowire Frames

DIY Photowire FramesOK, so we’ve had about 400 articles on taking pictures. What do you do with all those images?

I know you did not expect me to come up with a dull answer like tag them, upload them to Flickr (though Flickr is great), or put them in an album I know you are expecting something with a little more handy work. No to worry, this project will provide a great show-off with minimal effort.

Here is a neat way to display your images. And Yes – it will require some DIYing. (Are they still saying neat nowadays? I got all my English from watching the A-team). Thank you Dima Tsvetkov for this great tutorial.

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The Bokeh Shape-O-Matic

bokeh shape-O-matOne of the more popular posts here at DIYP is Create your own Bokeh. It shows you how to add hearts or stars (or skulls) shapes to your picture. I can totally understand it. It is a quick project, it’s fun and it takes nothing more than a piece of black paper and a puncher, or scissors.

I have to say, though, that making a few of those fun widgets takes time. It also eats space in the camera bag. If you are ready to take it to the next step, take a look at Ron Rademacher‘s Bokeh Shape-O-Mat.

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Six Photography Projects You Can Print Or Fold

1. Printable Flash Gels

Five Photography Projects You Can Print Or FoldAfter Rosco dropped the axe on their sample gel program, us photographers had to find alternatives. The idea is quite simple, using a transparency sheet and a printer, simply print your favorite gels on the sheet. In the project description there is a PDF with CTB, CTO and Window Green gels – your starters strobist kit. Are the colors 100% balanced, I am not sure, however, it is a quick solution till Rosco comes up with their strobist kit. LINK.

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Shooting the Team – Surf’s Up

the-little-professor.jpg After sharing two posts of the Shooting the Team project, I believe you get the idea: Do an assignment like photograph, using journeyman flash accessories.

By telling the story of how I shot Omer, I’ll almost wrap up half of the team.

What I wanted to show in this portrait is Omer’s light and fun approach towards life (and work). “Surf’s up – Lets jump in” is just what you’ll hear him say at the beach or facing a challenging task at work. (Of course it was easier to convey the mood using a beach accessory).

So this is what Omer and I thought of – making a light feeling portrait while showing off Omer’s abs.

Shooting the Team - Surf's Up

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