Source: http://mashable.com/2013/10/23/clean-install-os-x-mavericks/

This method works for almost all users — it keeps your data and existing programs intact and upgrades your machine to the latest OS. But sometimes, you might not want to do a regular OS upgrade.

It’s possible to do a clean install of OS X Mavericks on your Mac — or on a new hard drive, if you’re upgrading or repairing your Mac — but it takes a bit of work.

The process is a bit more complicated than it has been in previous years, but it’s still relatively easy to create a bootable copy of OS X Mavericks that you can run from a USB stick or other drive.

Note: A clean install will erase all of the contents on your disk drive. Make sure to back up your important files, settings and apps before proceeding.

  • Getting Started


    To do a clean install of OS X Mavericks, you’ll need a blank USB flash drive that is at least 8GB in size. You’ll be using this drive completely for OS X Mavericks, so don’t waste a larger drive if you have an 8GB available.

    You can also use an existing hard drive partition, but that process complicates the second option for this installer.

    You’ll also need to download OS X Mavericks onto your existing Mac.

  • Download OS X Mavericks


    You can download OS X Mavericks from the Mac App Store here.

    This will download a 5.2GB file called “Install OS X Mavericks” to your Applications folder.

  • Format USB Drive


    Now, format the USB drive by opening up Disk Utility. It’s in the Utilities folder in Applications.

    Select your USB drive and click on the “Erase” tab. Select Mac OS Extended (Journaled) as the format type and keep the name as “untitled.”

    Click the Erase button. This will take a few minutes, but will erase your USB drive will be erased and format it with the proper file system.

  • Easiest Option: Use Lion DiskMaker App


    A great app for automating the creation of an OS X bootable USB disk called Lion DiskMaker.

    Lion DiskMaker is still putting the final touches on its version compatible with Mavericks, but the creator’s latest beta version supports OS X 10.9 and will build a bootable USB. The only caveat is that you must have the Install OS X Mavericks file inside your Applications folder.

    This is far and away the easiest way to create a bootable copy of OS X Mavericks.

    Although I’ve successfully built a number of bootable USB disks with Lion DiskMaker, be aware that in my tests, the process took more time than the manual method (below). If you’re low on time and high on efficiency, the manual method may be your best bet.

  • Option 2: The Manual Way (Requires Terminal)


    First, I’d like to thank MacRumors forum member tywebb13 for his instructions on creating a manual bootable USB copy of OS X Mavericks.

    This method requires using the Terminal app. If you’re not comfortable typing commands into Terminal, just use the Lion DiskMaker app (above).

    To continue with using Terminal, follow the steps below.

    1. After downloading OS X Mavericks to your Applications folder and formatting your USB drive (make sure it’s called “Untitled”), open up the Terminal app.

    2. Paste the following command into the Terminal window and hit enter:

    sudo /Applications/Install\ OS\ X\ Mavericks.app/Contents/Resources/createinstallmedia –volume /Volumes/Untitled –applicationpath /Applications/Install\ OS\ X\ Mavericks.app –nointeraction
    view rawmavericks-install hosted with ❤ by GitHub

    3. You will be prompted to enter in your user password. Then, you’ll see a list of processes on the terminal screen that read:

    Erasing Disk:
    Copying Installer files to disk…

    This process runs a special mode built into the OS X Mavericks installer that can create installable media. The disk you’re copying the media onto becomes bootable, too.

    The process takes less time than Lion DiskMaker, but you’ll need to follow the instructions exactly. Don’t move the installer to another folder, and make sure you don’t have more than one disk drive titled “Untitled” connected to your machine.

  • Booting Up and Installing


    Once your USB drive has been created, it’s time to install Mavericks.

    1. Restart (or boot up) your Mac with the USB drive connected and hold down on the Option key. You should see a screen that lets you select a number of different hard drives, including your USB drive that reads, “Install OS X Mavericks.”

    2. Click on that drive to open up a list of settings. If you just want to do a typical OS X installation, you can do so (but then, why did you take the time to make the bootable media?).

    3. For a clean install, open up Disk Utility and erase your main hard drive. Once you’ve done so, you can go back to the Install OS X Mavericks disk and choose “Install a new copy of OS X.”

Mac OS

To hide the user with short user name “Jim” from the login window:

- first log in to an admin account,

- launch Terminal,

- and paste this:
sudo defaults write /Library/Preferences/com.apple.loginwindow \HiddenUsersList -array-add Jim

To unhide the account, enter this:

sudo defaults delete /Library/Preferences/com.apple.loginwindow \HiddenUsersList



(Viết bởi anh HaFoto) - Chụp bằng 10D, 1/20s, F 3.5,  28mm của ống zoom 28-300mm.

Ảnh trên là kết quả của 3 kỹ thuật:

1. Chụp với tốc độ chậm để lấy ambient light, và dùng bounce flash để “bắt” hành động của chủ đề.

2. Kỹ thuật “shoot from the hip”, đây là kỹ thuật chụp mà không nhìn vào “view finder”. Để bảo đảm độ nét và để chụp “trúng” chủ đề, kỹ thuật này thường được dùng với wide angle lens. Với wide angle lens thì vùng ảnh rõ rất sâu và góc nhìn rộng nên “bắn” dễ trúng.

Kỹ thuật này rất thông dụng trong “photojournalism” vì: 1. Chủ đề sẽ tự nhiên hơn (phần lớn người ta rất nhạy cảm khi ai đó cầm máy hình nhắm thẳng vào một cách rõ ràng). 2. Mình tiếp cận với chủ đề dễ dàng hơn và họ sẽ không biết khi nào họ sẽ được chụp. 3. Mình có thể chụp với mọi tư thế và hoàn cảnh khác nhau. 4. Tầm nhìn và quan sát của photographer sẽ rộng hơn là nhìn vào trong view finder, nên khả năng dự đoán sự việc sẽ dễ dàng hơn.

3. Hậu kỳ là khâu cuối cùng. Hạn chế của kỹ thuật “shoot from the hip” là bố cục lệch lạc do không nhìn vào view finder và phải chụp thật nhanh (mặt khác “shoot from the hip” chủ yếu mang tính thời sự nên tập trung vào “timing”, nghĩa là chụp đúng thời), thường với kỹ thuật này ta thường phải “bố cục lại” ở hậu kỳ dùng kỹ thuật “crop”.

Ảnh trên không crop được vì cặp phía sau là bố mẹ của cô dâu, nên để hạn chế khoãng không gian lớn, trong photoshop tôi “vẽ” tia sáng để gây hướng mắt người nhìn vào trung tâm. Một điểm may mắn là cô phụ dâu bên phải cũng nhìn vào trung tâm tạo thành cái gọi là “eye-lines” cũng nhằm mục đích hướng mắt người nhìn. Và cuối cùng để làm cho sự việc thêm phần linh động (dancing) tôi thêm “blur” (cũng bằng photoshop) vào mái tóc của cô dâu.

Checking for front / back focus and fine-tuning camera autofocus.

Newer DSLRs have the facility to individually tune the AF settings for different lenses via a custom setting (the micro adjust function).

  • It’s really easy
  • You don’t need special tools or measuring equipment (it’s free)
  • There is no chance of damaging anything (you can reset it)

The AF fine-tune adjustment for auto focus functionality is available in many newer cameras that have a ‘liveview’ capability.

This article contains several different (free) methods for AF adjustment

Note… You can use the Moire fringe technique to check any (digital) camera AF system for back or front focus.

This article is one of hundreds of reviews and articles on the site – See our Articles Index Page for the latest.

Cameras with micro-adjustment (or AF fine tuning) currently include:

Canon 1D X1DIII1DIV1DsMkIII5DII5D350D7D, Nikon D3, D3x, D4, D300, D700, D800 Sony A900, Pentax K20 (note that the EOS 60D does not include this feature) The EOS 1D X / 5D3 now allows separate AF Microadjustment for both the wide angle and the telephoto settings of a zoom lens.

Sometimes, different lenses might consistently not focus perfectly (front or back focus). This can now be adjusted for individual lenses. Some cameras even allow for multiple copies of the same lens to be individually adjusted.

We’ve got a downloadable lens calibration chart to make this process easier. The lens calibration target is easy to set up and use with an LCD monitor.

If you’re looking for specific hardware to help with the process, we have a review of the SpyderLensCal

AF Microadjustment – back/front focus

It’s important to realise that any system of parts with individual tolerances can exhibit significant variance if the assorted ‘errors’ all stack up in one direction (they can just cancel out too). This is a key element of engineering design for manufacturing.

Whilst expensive lenses and an expensive camera should ‘just work’ there may be room for improvement.

  • Note – I’m using the 1Ds3 as an example here – this procedure works with any camera that has some way of fine tuning the AF performance, and a ‘live view’ mode.

af adjustment custom functionPreviously you could get Canon to calibrate your lenses and bodies for you, but this entailed sending the camera off for the work.

The 1D Mark 3 and 1Ds Mark 3 both allow customisation of the AF settings, although you should note that if you try a whole lot of lenses and they all require a considerable adjustment, then it may be that your camera body needs fixing.

The adjustment is in the Custom functions menus (C.Fn III-7 AF Microadjustment).

A setting of 0 will clear all AF adjustment information, 1 will enable the global adjustment, while 2 will set individual lenses.

If all lenses front or back focus a little then you can apply a global adjustment.

How to check focus accuracy

Canon have a 1D /1Ds3 ‘Optimising Camera settings’ document [PDF](German translation [PDF]) available which has some useful background info on many of the adjustments and settings you can make to these two cameras.

I was sent details of an excellent post on OPF by Bart van der Wolf, covering his use of a fine graphics design on an LCD screen.

I’ve -part- of the autofocus test image I’ve been using at the right.

Lens calibration AF microadjustment patternsThe large image plays tricks with your visual system, so be wary of this if you have any difficulties caused by repetitive patterns.

  • Download (zip file) a 1000×1000 pixels square version.
    It will expand into a 1000×1000 GIF file
    Please don’t link to this file – the filename will change ;-)

AF Microadjustment procedures

The principle is that you display the square GIF image (at 100% full size) and focus on the computer screen, using liveview (zoomed if need be) and maximise the appearance of Moire interference patterns. Do not make the image ‘fit’ your computer screen, it needs to be unscaled.

You will need to have the camera mounted on a tripod and directly facing the computer screen. Take some care to get the screen square on and lined up with the camera.

  • If you want to be really accurate with lining things up, put a small mirror up, flat against your screen (or target). When the camera is proerly square on to the screen, then the reflection of your lens will be visible right in the middle of your viewfinder.

The interference patterns come about from the interaction between the image pixels on your screen and the pixels of your sensor. They may not look exactly the same as in the examples below, but you should notice a distinct peak in the amount of detail visible – that is the focus point.

  • Note – this won’t work with a print of the image! You need a screen view

You then switch off liveview and part press the shutter button to activate AF.

Look carefully at the lens distance indicator as you do this … if the lens and camera combination is spot on, then there will will be no movement of the lens focusing ring and the image will not change.

I tried this firstly with my 24-70, set at 70mm (Canon suggest setting zooms at their longest setting)

… no movement of the lens ring at all. The lens is spot on. Reactivating liveview showed the patterns I’d seen after manually focusing. There could be a slight difference since the interference technique is very sensitive. If you are not sure, then try the test again with an adjustment of + or – 1. you should see a difference.

Next I moved the camera closer to the screen, making sure it was properly ‘square on’ to the centre of the pattern. I fitted my EF14mm 2.8L II lens

Note – Camera-to-subject distance should ideally be no less than 50 times the focal length of the lens. For a 50mm lens, that would be at least 2.5 meters (25m for a 500mm)

1Ds mk3 af microadjustment samplesIt’s difficult to show graphics here, but the first image gives an idea of the rear display when manually focused with liveview, while the second shows the view after getting the camera to autofocus (where an adjustment is needed).

I’ve exaggerated the difference slightly for showing here.

It’s actually only a few centimetres difference in focal distance, but the interference effect allows you to get critically sharp focus.

I noticed some patterns in a quick check with a CRT (if this works fine – please let me know?), but I’d prefer a LCD (a laptop is useful for testing longer lenses). My 23″ Apple Cinema display shows patterns much better with my Canon 1Ds3 than my 15″ MacBook Pro with its higher resolution (pixels per inch) screen.

  • If you are having difficulty with longer lenses, I’m told that a laptop outside at night works quite well.

The exact pattern you see when sharply focused, depends on your LCD screen and its pixels, since it’s the interference between the screen version of the image (and its individual pixels) and the pixels of your sensor that result in the aliasing. It was different with each lens and at different distances.

The effect should be very obvious to see – you are looking for a peak in the pattern’s visibility, not any particular amount of pattern.

After a quick test, the following settings were altered

  • EF14mm 2.8L II – a setting of +8 (backward)
  • EF15mm 2.8 (fisheye) – no correction required
  • EF16-35 2.8L @35mm – a setting of +5 (backward)
  • EF24-70 2.8L @70mm – no correction required
  • EF70-200 2.8L @200mm – no correction required

It’s worth testing your lenses in different conditions and trying a few ‘real world’ photos as well. I’d not even noticed the error on the 14mm and a few quick test shots at f/2.8 show a just perceptible increase in sharpness.

Important reminder

Do remember that all AF systems have a degree of tolerance in them, so don’t get carried away spending hours chasing ‘perfect’ focusing. You are adjusting a camera, not building a space telescope!

AF microadjustment is not the ‘cheap fix’ for improving their photography that some would like to think. As a working professional photographer, I did it once when writing this page, once when testing the SpyderLensCal and once when I got a replacement for my old 24-70 (-2 adj. required)

I repeated each measurement several times just to be sure it was real and not a ‘glitch’ in the AF.

If you find yourself wishing there was a finer gradation of adjustment than offered, I’d seriously suggest ending the process and going out to take some photos :-)

Alternative AF setting technique using the Moire technique

An alternative way of testing is to always start with your lens set at infinity.

  • You line up the target and activate AF.
  • Then turn off AF and activate liveview.
  • You should see some form of Moire pattern.
  • Turn the focus ring to a slightly closer distance – does this initially make the pattern more obvious?
  • If so then you have an element of backfocusing.
  • If it makes the pattern less obvious then you have front focusing (if any movement of the focus ring makes things worse, then smile to yourself, since the AF for that lens is already spot on :-)
  • Adjust the AF setting to compensate (positive numbers on my 1Ds3 for back focus). Repeat the process until any movement of the focus ring lessens the visibility of the Moire.
  • The amount of movement required may be very small with some lenses

I’ve seen it suggested that by starting at infinity and letting the AF work at the start, you are getting more consistent results.

  • Some people have contacted me after finding that they couldn’t get the moire method to work with their screen. It seems that very high resolution LCD screens present the image a bit too small. A target based approach might be of help if you’re having problems – take shots at +20,1,0,-10,-20 and just look at them, see the SpyderLensCal review for a more general discussion – not just based on that device (a sheet of graph paper can work, with care).

AF check on cameras without liveview/AF adjustment

If you want to try this with a camera without liveview then just shoot a picture of the screen using AF and then two more with the focus ring manually moved +/- 5cm. Hopefully the AF version should show some fringing not visible in the other two shots.

If all your lenses show a slight shift then it -might- be worth getting your camera serviced?

Some Examples showing what you might see

Here are two examples taken with the 1Ds Mk3 and 16-35 2.8L (mk1) @f/2.8 and 35mm

The first picture shows correct AF

  • Note that these two images are intended to give an idea of the effect you are looking for, not the testing methodology (you can use the LCD screen and Liveview)

correct af adjustment

One additional feature of this method is that if you don’t have the camera square to the screen (i.e. sensor parallel to the screen), you will get noticeable asymmetry in the pattern. The screen above shows that the bottom left corner of the screen is slightly closer (or further away) than the top right corner. This method is very sensitive in this respect (much more so than you could get by simply looking at a shot for focus errors)

The second picture below, was manually set to front focus by at least 10cm. This is quite a bit, but I’ve done it to show the effect you are looking for. I’ve also taken the photo from closer than you might use for a real test.

af front focus

Both of these shots were shot tethered and the images you see above are screenshots of the ‘Quick Preview’ from EOS utility.

I did this so that I could use an un-resampled image, since any resampling of the image can introduce new moire (these effects are not easy to show here!).

Remember too, that both images show some asymmetry in the patterns which indicates that I’ve not got the camera fully square on to the screen.

It can help if you use a monitor that has been calibrated to some extent. (We have quite a few articles all about aspects of colour management on this site)

Uncalibrated monitors often have a colour temperature up towards 10000K, which is very blue.

The nominal ‘standard’ monitor setting of 6500K is much closer to daylight.

I did see it suggested that if you do a lot of work in tungsten lighting, then setting your monitor colour temperature to 5000K before doing the adjustments might produce better results, particularly if using a lens with noticeable chromatic aberration.

  • I’ve not tested this dependence on display colour, so if anyone has the patience to do so, then please do let me know what you find out?

It just works!

Thanks to all the people who’ve written in with questions, and refinements to the technique. I’ll be sure to keep the page updated if any new techniques or tips come in.

I’ve heard examples of people finding that their ‘average’ lens made into the ‘sharp’ category after trying this ;-)

Canon’s suggested Micro Focus Adjustment

This is Canon’s suggested technique – I cover much more about using similar techniques in my review of theSpyderLensCal device.

  • Mount the camera on a good tripod.
  • Set up a target for the camera to focus on. The reference target should have sufficient contrast for the AF system to detect. It should be flat and parallel to the camera’s focal plane, and centred.
  • Lighting should be bright / even.
  • Camera-to-subject distance should be no less than 50 times the focal length of the lens. For a 50mm lens, that would be at least 2.5 meters.
  • Set the lens for AF and the camera for One-Shot AF, and manually select the centre focusing point.
  • Shoot at the maximum aperture of the lens via manual mode or aperture-priority. Adjust exposure level to get an accurate exposure. Use low ISO setting.
  • If the lens has an image stabilizer, turn it off.
  • Use a remote switch or the camera’s self-timer to fire the shutter. Use mirror lock up as well.
  • Take three sets of images at microadjustment settings of -5, 0 and +5, i.e, three consecutive images at -5, three consecutive images at 0, and three consecutive images at +5.
  • Look at the images on your screen at 100% magnification.
  • Take additional sets of test images at different microadjustment settings if necessary until the sharpest image is achieved.
  • Register the corresponding microadjustment settings in the camera.

Thorough, but slower… ;-)

AF Adjustment notes from CanonFor best results, manually set the focus on the lens to infinity for every exposure before allowing the camera to autofocus the reference target.

Expect some minor variations in focusing accuracy within each set of three test images, even though they were all taken at the same microadjustment setting. This is completely normal, and is due to the tolerances of the camera’s AF system.

Expect smaller microadjustment settings to have a greater effect with telephoto lenses, and vice versa for wide-angle lenses.

If you are attempting to set microadjustments for a zoom lens, it is important to realize that the camera’s setting may only be accurate for the focal length setting you test. The instruction book suggests testing at the longest focal length of the lens, but you may find it more efficient to choose the focal length you use most often.

Alternative Canon Liveview based focusing method

This is from a suggestion on the Birdphotographers list by Arash Hazeghi

Make sure you have the latest version of the Canon EOS utility installed. You need to point the camera at a fine detail target, ideally at least 50 times the focal length away

  • If you find that it is very difficult to achieve a precise sharp focus (particularly with slower lenses) you can lower the 50x distance limit somewhat, however I’d personally not go much closer than 30x. You can see just how little change there is during the focus stepping in my SpyderLensCal review.

Make sure that the camera is square on to the target, and that the target is sufficiently flat. Something like a bank note usually has a lot of fine detail, if you don’t have a convenient ISO chart available.

Connect the camera to your computer via the USB port, cancel any image download pop-up/application

  1. Run the EOS utility.
  2. Click on Camera setting/remote shooting icon.
  3. Click on Remote Live View Shooting. This will open a new window with live sensor video feed.
  4. Make sure that AF is in phase detect mode (quick mode AF). This uses the camera’s main AF sensor.
  5. Choose the centre AF point and make sure the white rectangle is centred on the AF point. The AF points pattern will be different for different cameras.
  6. Click on the magnifying icon for a full size view.
  7. Click the AF ( ON ) button in the focus section of the controls. The camera will now autofocus on the target.
  8. Click on the 200% magnification checkbox. The view on the screen is now at 2:1 magnification. Note that it is essential that your tripod is placed on a solid surface, since anyone walking round will easily produce vibrations you can see.
  9. Now click on the ( > ) or( < ) buttons to shift focus backwards or forwards one click at a time until image appears at its sharpest on the screen. When doing this, notice the contrast at edges, you want them as crisp as possible. Record how many clicks you have moved relative to the centre (note that the infinity symbol indicates the ‘far’ direction)
  10. Repeat this a few times until the results are consistent (remember that there is always some slight variation in autofocus)
  11. Each click on the ( > ) or ( < ) buttons corresponds to one unit in the AF micro adjust scale in the camera.
  12. Disengage LV by clicking close in the Zoom View and Remote Live View Windows.
  13. Go to microadjust (MA) menu option in your camera and set the amount of adjustment (for this lens) to the exact value recorded, noting the back or front direction.
  14. Go back to step 3 and perform AF again. If the image is already as sharp as possible when you click 200% you have sucessfully set an adjustment value. If still not right then go through this procedure until you can consistently get the sharpest image. You can shoot test images and transfer directly to your computer.

Some notes – I’ve not tried this particular method yet. If anyone finds it particularly useful, or has any suggestions to make it better, then please do let me know?

If you’ve come directly to this method, do read some of the caveats in the notes from Canon just above this section.

Still more…

Some more experimental techniques I’ve come across:

So, how good is AF?

Possibly better than you’d thought, but for anyone really getting into checking the minutiae of AF performance, I’d suggest reading this article.

In particular bear it in mind when you look at people’s sample images. I’ve never been a ‘detail’ person, but I know enough about measuring the performance of optical systems to always take peoples’ reports of lens quality (without a detailed description of their methodologies) with a pinch of salt ;-)

Of course, if you had a camera that incorporates both Phase Detect and Contrast Detect AF, then you could just point it at a target and it would self calibrate the AF.

Physical Measurement devices

There are other approaches to the moire one above that I use. However I’d suggest you try a ‘free’ technique first…

Datacolor produce device to make the process easier – we have a full review of the SpyderLensCal.

The review also has a more general discussion about using targets for focus adjustment.

Despite my initial distrust of such devices I can see situations where the SpyderLensCal would be of use, particularly for longer lenses outside.

Experiments with this device also suggested that there was no real justification for ‘precison’ versions such as the Lensalign Pro. I’m adjusting lens microfocus, not setting up a lab to test mirrors for space telescopes…

More of Keiths articles and reviews

Source: http://www.northlight-images.co.uk/article_pages/cameras/1ds3_af_micoadjustment.html

A Post By: Eric Kim

Let’s face it, starting street photography is no easy task. For the average photographer, going from shooting flowers into shooting people in the streets is like stepping into a Ferrari after driving a Toyota Prius. It is intimidating at first, but quite exhilarating once you try it out. After shooting on the streets for about four years, here are my top ten tips for somebody (with absolutely no background in street photography) to get their feet wet.

1. Ditch the zoom and use a wide-angle prime

midnight dining.jpg

Street photography is not like your 2nd grade science class. You don’t examine your subjects under a microscope. Rather, street photography is about experiencing life, up close and personal. When starting off street photography, you may be tempted to use your 70-200 zoom lens to feel less “awkward” from shooting in the streets. Rather, it will do much more harm than good.

First of all, you will look even more conspicuous in public holding a huge zoom lens. Secondly, if you use a zoom lens you have to point it directly at somebody, which makes the person you are trying to capture feel as if they have a gun pointed to their head. Rather, try using a wide-angle prime lens. This will solve two of the forementioned problems. One, prime wide-angle lenses are often quite small and look much less threatening than the typical telephoto lens. Furthermore, by using a wide-angle lens, you can still capture your subjects without necessarily pointing your camera directly at them. Which brings me on to my next point…

2. Get close

a lone dinner.jpg

When I say close, I mean GET CLOSE. Get so close so that when you are taking photos of people on the street that you can see the perspiration dripping from their forehead or the texture of their skin. By using a wide-angle prime lens (as mentioned in the before point), you will be forced to get close to your subjects. The advantage of this is that the wide-angle lens will give you a perspective which makes the viewer of your images feel as if they are a part of the scene, rather than just a voyeur looking in. Not only that, but when you are taking photos really close to people, they often think that you are taking a photo of something behind them. I recommend using either a 24, 28, or 35mm on a full-frame or crop camera.

3. Always carry your camera with you

mime at st pancras.jpg

You have heard this a million times and you know that you should, but you always seem to find excuses or reasons NOT to always carry your camera with yourself. “It’s too heavy, it’s annoying, it’s a hassle, it’s frustrating.” I’ll tell you what’s frustrating. Missing the perfect photo opportunity (the decisive moment) and regretting it for the rest of your life. I have to admit that is a bit dramatic, but it is true. If you always carry your camera with you, you will never miss those “Kodak moments” which always seem to happen at the most unexpected times. I have taken some of my best images at the most unexpected moments—images that would have been impossible to take if I did not have my camera by my side.

4. Disregard what other people think of you


One of the things that people are worried about when starting street photography is worrying about being judged by other people as being a “creeper” or just being plain weird. Disregard these thoughts. When you are shooting on the streets, you will most likely be alone. That means that anyone who may be “judging” you is people that you do not know and will most likely never see again in your life. So why let them get in your way?

We may feel constricted by these “social rules” but remember, they can always be broken. There is no law out there which doesn’t allow photography in public places (regardless of what the police may tell you).

To prime yourself better for your street photographer “role,” try doing something unusual in public. Lay on the ground for a minute and see how other people react around you, get up, and simply walk away like nothing happened. Go to a busy intersection and stand like a statue and see how people react (trust me, nobody notices. I had to do this as an experiment for one of my sociology classes). When you go into an elevator, stand the opposite way. The social world is full of false rules that constrict us. Break them, and shooting in the streets should become quite natural.

5. Smile often:

smile a little bit.jpg

It is funny how far a smile can go, especially when shooting in the streets. If you take a photo of somebody and they give you a weird look, simply tip your hat to them and show them two rows of your pearly white chompers. I would say that when smiling to strangers (even in the city of angels) I get over a 95% response rate. Even some of the most unapproachable people will smile back at you. By smiling often and to others, this will help you relax and lighten the atmosphere around yourself. People trust a street photographer who smiles, as they will simply disregard you as a hobbyist, rather than someone with malicious intent.

6. Ask for permission


Although many street photography purists say that the only true street photography is candid, I would highly disagree with them. Feel free to go up to strangers who you think look interesting, and ask to take a portrait of them. People love getting their photos taken, and as long as you act courteous and casual about it, most people will accept. Feel free to ask to take portraits of many mundane subjects of everyday life like the waitress at the diner, the bellboy of a hotel, or even a parking lot attendant.

7. Be respectful:


This is one of the tricky grey lines when it comes to street photography. I personally try my best not to take photos of homeless people when they look too down on their luck. Although I do agree that there are tasteful images taken of homeless people which call people into helping these people, there are also many images that look like pure exploitation. Think of the cliché shot of a homeless person crouched over on the street, begging for money. Before you take these images, think about what message you are trying to convey. Are you shooting for the reason of building awareness of the atrocious situations that many homeless people live in? Or are you merely taking a photo of a homeless person for the sake of taking their photo? Nobody can be the judge—only you can decide.

8. Look for juxtaposition:


I feel that this is what makes street photography so unique and fascinating when compared to other genres of photography. Street photographs are able to convey the humor, irony, and the beauty of everyday life, by juxtaposing people with others and the environment. Look for signs with interesting messages that seem to be contradictory to the people standing around it. Be on the lookout for human heads that seem to be displaced by street lamps. Look for two individuals that seem to be differing in height, complexion, or even weight. Capture an array of emotions from people, whether it be happiness, sadness, or curiosity.

9. Tell a story:


Imagine that you are a film director and that you are trying to make an interesting play. Who would you decide to play as your actors? What is your backdrop going to be. How are the actors going to be interacting with one another and the environment? What kind of emotion are you trying to convey—whimsical, curious, or gloomy? If a viewer looks at one of your photos, will they simply move on or will they take a minute or two and study your image, trying to figure out the intrinsic story? Does your image captivate the viewer and make them feel that they are a part of the scene? Ask yourself these questions the next time you are taking photos on the street.

10. Just do it:

together in the rain.jpg

This is the last but most quintessential point of all of becoming a street photographer. Reading all of these tips aren’t going to do you any good to become a street photographer. Photography is not done behind the computer screen, but on the streets with a camera in hand. Honestly when it comes down to it, all this obsession over cameras, lenses, and gear doesn’t matter. Grab your DSLR, point-and-shoot, iPhone, or whatever and hit the streets. The beauty of the world awaits you—don’t miss your chance.

Eric Kim an international street photographer, educator, and blogger. His passion is teaching street photography workshops and building communities all around the globe. You can connect over on his blogEric Kim Street Photography or see his portfolio on his website.

Source: http://digital-photography-school.com/10-tips-for-the-aspiring-street-photographer

Why shooting with just a 35mm lens WILL improve your photography.

By Steve Huff – Jun 09, 2011

I originally wrote this article to end my Fuji X100 camera review but decided to expand on it and publish it on its own. When the X100 and even the Leica X1 were announced and released, many people were complaining that it did not have a Zoom lens, or have the capability of adding another lens. I heard things like “Who wants a fixed 35mm lens” and “These cameras are useless with just a 35″.

To me, this kind of thinking is borderline nonsense as the 35mm focal length is one of the most useful, if not THE most useful focal lengths you can use! I truly believe that if you shoot with just a 35mm focal length for at least 6 months your photography will improve and so will your knowledge of composition, reading light, and even your “vision” will improve. By that I mean, the way you see things in relation to photography.

Yes, It’s true. You can not add a zoom lens to cameras like the X100 or Leica X1 nor do they have a built in zoom lens. When you invest in these types of cameras, you are investing in a 35mm camera. Just like the old days with the classic fixed lens film cameras. But I see this as a good thing and is why I also adore the Leica X1 and X100 and even a Leica M9 with a simple 35mm lens attached.

For me, it’s all about simplicity and knowing what to expect from the camera. After a couple of weeks shooting with just your camera and one 35mm lens you will start to be able to visualize in your head what your image will look like, way before you even shoot it. When I go out and spot a scene I want to photograph, I instantly envision in my head what the image will look like. I can visualize what it would look like at f/2 or f/8, I  can see how I want it framed and what my final image will look like, even with processing! I see all of this before I take the shot. I can do this because I have been shooting with prime lenses only for so many years, and the 35 has been one of the main focal lengths I use along with my 50mm.

Some Images using only the 35mm focal length.

The house below was shot with a Leica M9 and 35 Summarit, which is a GREAT lens for this type of photo. It’s funny because the Summarit has better Bokeh than the 35 Summicron ASPH, and is about half the price and a smaller lens! True!

If you click on the house image below, you can see the quality of the lens better as the detail is also there.

The image below of the old (and what I thought was an abandoned) motorhome is one of my favorites of recent times. I remember driving down a rural road and I spotted this “scene” from the corner of my eye. I immediately turned around and pulled up to this dirty, worn down, flat tired motor home. Right when I stepped out of my car I knew exactly what angle I wanted because of the tarp that was flowing towards my lens. I knew this would look amazing in black and white and when I processed the image, it was exactly what I had hoped for.

It was shot with the Leica M9 and 35 Summicron ASPH lens.

For at least a year I traveled around with my M9 and 35mm taking photos of old buildings and abandoned places. It was almost an obsession of mine, finding these long forgotten houses, shops, cars..and even gas stations. For this project, the 35mm focal length was my most valued and used lens. A 28 was always a bit too wide, and the 50 was a bit too long.

This old service station was captured deep in the mountains of Kentucky, once again with the Leica 35 Summarit. For full detail and color, click on the image.

So OK, so far all I have shown you is old buildings and a motorhome, which are all perfect subjects for a 35. What about people? Sometimes with a 35mm, if you get too close to someone they can appear distorted, but not always. I find the 35mm focal length great for portraits IF you want to include the surroundings as well, and IMO, this makes for a much nicer “portrait”. A few years ago I started finding the typical 85mm portrait “heads” somewhat boring. I like to see more of what is going on in the surroundings…the persons “environment”, which is why you have probably heard the term “Environmental Portrait” before.

In my opinion, the 35mm focal length can produce more interesting portraits than a 50, 75 or 90 IMO. Why? Because you see the environment along with the person. You see what is going on in the scene which I find much more interesting than just a plain head shot most of the time.

Below is a fire breather who was walking the streets of Vegas and anytime someone gave him a dollar or two he would breath fire on the street, stopping traffic an all. With the M9 and 35 Summilux ASPH II, this shot was easy, and i love it!


The next shot of my son Brandon was taken over a year ago with the M9 and 35 Summarit. We were sitting down to eat and I wanted to get a picture of him browsing the menu but instead he looked up at me with the “are you taking a picture AGAIN!” look. Added a Sepia tone in Color Efex which looks better when you click on the image. This shot, when viewed at the larger size, reminds me of how great this little Summarit is. A little bit classic, a little bit modern, and the lowest price Leica 35.


Even the little Olympus E-PL1 with the 17mm pancake attached is just about equal to a 35mm foal length (34) and here is another portrait I shot with that exact combo! I really like this one as you see the environment in which the Auctioneer works. This was at an auction on a hot sweaty summer day and he was standing in the back of his truck from where he auctioned off a house and belongings. It was in Illinois and probably close to 100 degrees on that day. IT WAS HOT and HUMID.


When I shot the last Seal tour I also experimented with the 35 and really loved what I managed to capture with it. Shooting concerts with a 35mm lens sounds odd doesn’t it? Seems like it would be much too short, but with a performer such as Seal, using a 35mm is ESSENTIAL as there is so much audience participation going on. Once again, getting the subject and his surroundings is key to a really great photo. This one is with the M9 and 35 Summicron ASPH.


Using the Leica X1 which has just about a 35mm equivalent lens…

Here is one more “Environmental Portrait” I shot a year ago with the M9 and 35 Summilux ASPH II. You can see that this guy is a street performer. It tells more of a story than just a headshot would.

So as you can see, the 35mm focal length is very useful and versatile. In fact, after always going back and forth over which focal length I prefer between a 35 and 50, I always go back to the 35. It just seems natural.

After shooting a camera and one lens like a 35mm for at least 6 months you will know what angle to get, where to stand and you will get out of the “Zoom Lens” mindset, which IMO, makes you lazy. There, I said it and I mean it! Zoom lenses make you lazy. Sure it is nice to have that huge and pricey 70-200 because when you are roaming around the Zoo that is what everyone else has with them, and I used to be guilty of the same thing many years ago. Once I started shooting with a 35 and 50 my whole outlook changed and I realized that 95% of my shots taken with a zoom lens…sucked!

These days when I look back at my “zoom” shots they look flat and lifeless and it LOOKS like I zoomed in on my subject. But sometimes there will be a subject that is farther away and without a Zoom you can’t get close. Maybe you can not walk up to your subject to get closer. When this happens, I change my whole approach to the shot. Instead of worrying about the subject I look around and see what I can capture within the shot WITH the subject, and this usually makes it much more interesting.

Now of course, sports shooters and wildlife guys need powerful zooms (or primes) but for most of us, including the hobbyists, it could be a great experience to just shoot with one lens and one lens only for a while, and believe me, it will improve your photography.

I could get by day to day with either a 35 or a 50. My favorite lens in the world is actually a 50, but not for its focal length. The Leica Noctilux for its gorgeous rendering. Right behind that the new 35 Summilux ASPH. I have shot with a 35 for months on end, and did the same with a 50. Did my photography suffer because of it? NO, in fact, it had the opposite effect. It IMPROVED it.

My wrap up…

Shooting ONLY a 35mm lens for say, 3-6 months, will open up your mind to other possibilities. You will not just aim, zoom and shoot but you will look around, think and ask yourself how you can get the best shot with what you have. Shooting at 35mm seems natural. You can get great environmental portraits and even normal portraits if you step back a bit. 35mm is great for landscape and urban shots. It kind of sucks you in to the image at times and is not too wide like a 24 or 28 might be, nor is it too constricted like a 50 can be in some situations.

In many ways, in my opinion, the 35mm focal length is the perfect focal length for shooting life as it happens. The things around you, the people around you, and the daily grind in general. If you have the chance, put a 35mm (equivalent) on whatever camera you own and shoot it for a few weeks. ONLY using that lens. My guess is that by the end of the few weeks you will have some amazing keepers, and you will also have learned a bit more about composition. You will also have a liberated feeling as the stress of “what lens should I use” will be gone. Just you and your 35…pretty cool.

Source: http://www.stevehuffphoto.com/2011/06/09/why-shooting-with-just-a-35mm-lens-can-help-your-photography/


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