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Digital Art Photography For Dummies®

Book Description

So you've made the jump to digital photography and you're having a ball with your new camera, right? Now, you're wondering just what it would take to make your photos a little more than just snapshots. Well, Digital Art Photography For Dummies is a great place to find out!

You'll not only discover great new ideas, you'll see the effects in full color. This book will help you

  • Get fabulous, well-exposed photos, no matter what your shooting conditions may be

  • Tweak, edit, and enhance your images to create something a lot better than what you started with, or maybe something entirely new

  • Produce gallery-worthy art prints that people are willing to pay for

  • Find out if it's time to upgrade your computer to handle graphics work

Sound like fun? This plain-English guide makes it easy, too! You'll find out just what makes a picture artistic, how to plan and set up a good photo shoot, what kinds of tools are available in Photoshop to help you enhance or even completely revamp an image, and how to be sure that what comes out of your printer meets all your expectations. Best of all, this book is jam-packed with full-color images that show you just what you can produce. You'll find out how to

  • Select the right digital equipment

  • Shoot in color, black-and-white, and at night

  • Choose subject matter that fits your style

  • Understand and use your camera's settings to get the best shots

  • Photograph landscapes, people, action, and just about anything else

  • Create special effects in Photoshop

  • Improve the quality of your photos or turn them into true works of art

  • Mat and frame your work for maximum effect

If you're comfortable with your digital camera but want to find out more about creating cool effects in Photoshop, you can jump directly to Part III and discover tips and techniques that turn ordinary pictures into extraordinary art. Or maybe you've been trying to get better nighttime photos. Part II is all about setting up your equipment and getting the perfect shot. Like all For Dummies books, Digital Art Photography For Dummies is designed so you can go directly to the part that most interests you.

Whether you've been thinking of selling your work or you just want to create a knock-their-socks-off family gallery that your relatives can view online, this book shows you how to take your photography hobby to the next level. Even if you just want to look at the pictures for inspiration, you can't go wrong!

Table of Contents

  1. Copyright
  2. About the Author
  3. Author's Acknowledgments
  4. Publisher's Acknowledgments
  5. Introduction
    1. About This Book
    2. Foolish Assumptions
    3. Conventions Used in This Book
    4. What You Don't Have to Read
    5. How This Book Is Organized
      1. Part I: The Art of a Digital Picture
      2. Part II: The Photo Shoot
      3. Part III: Photoshop Art: Using Software to Enhance or Create Art Photos
      4. Part IV: The Final Output: Gallery-Worthy Prints
      5. Part V: The Part of Tens
      6. On the Web site
    6. Icons Used in This Book
    7. Where to Go from Here
  6. I. The Art of a Digital Picture
    1. 1. Digital Art Photography 101
      1. 1.1. Defining Digital Art Photography
      2. 1.2. Mastering Five Steps to Creating a Gallery-ready Art Print
        1. 1.2.1. 1) Define yourself, your subject matter, and your audience
        2. 1.2.2. 2) Master your craft and hone your photographic skills
        3. 1.2.3. 3) The trek from camera to computer
        4. 1.2.4. 4) Print images
        5. 1.2.5. 5) Frame your masterpiece
      3. 1.3. Composing an Art Photograph
        1. 1.3.1. Simplicity
        2. 1.3.2. Balance
        3. 1.3.3. Rule of Thirds
        4. 1.3.4. All about light, shadows, and shades
        5. 1.3.5. Recognizing lines, shapes, and forms
          1. 1.3.5.1. Identifying lines in photos
          2. 1.3.5.2. Using geometric shapes and forms
          3. 1.3.5.3. Texture
        6. 1.3.6. Subject placement
        7. 1.3.7. Deciphering color
        8. 1.3.8. Understanding positive and negative space
        9. 1.3.9. Foreground, background, and depth of field
        10. 1.3.10. Perspective
        11. 1.3.11. In-camera cropping and framing
    2. 2. Making the Digital Leap
      1. 2.1. The Digital Path
      2. 2.2. Film versus Digital
      3. 2.3. Digital Camera 101
        1. 2.3.1. Digital camera types
        2. 2.3.2. How digital cameras work
        3. 2.3.3. The whole megapixel (MP) thing
        4. 2.3.4. Lenses
        5. 2.3.5. Settings
        6. 2.3.6. Flash and flash attachments
        7. 2.3.7. Batteries
        8. 2.3.8. Supports
        9. 2.3.9. Memory and removable storage media
      4. 2.4. Getting a Digital Image from Camera to Computer
      5. 2.5. Resolving Resolution Issues
      6. 2.6. Understanding File Types
        1. 2.6.1. JPEG
        2. 2.6.2. TIFF
        3. 2.6.3. Raw
    3. 3. Your Digital Technology
      1. 3.1. Exploring Your Computer
        1. 3.1.1. Storage space
        2. 3.1.2. Monitors
        3. 3.1.3. Calibration
        4. 3.1.4. Go-getter graphics add-ons
        5. 3.1.5. Choosing a platform
          1. 3.1.5.1. Upgrading your platform
          2. 3.1.5.2. Realizing the PC's improved graphics capabilities
      2. 3.2. Choosing a Printer and Paper for the Results You Want
        1. 3.2.1. Finding a printer that's right for your work
        2. 3.2.2. Paper and friends: Selecting the best medium for your prints
        3. 3.2.3. Finding the right image size for your print
      3. 3.3. Exploring the Ins and Outs of Scanners
        1. 3.3.1. Choosing a scanner
        2. 3.3.2. Configuring your scanner
    4. 4. Defining Yourself and Your Photographs
      1. 4.1. Defining Yourself as a Photographer
        1. 4.1.1. Shoot what you like
        2. 4.1.2. Study the masters
        3. 4.1.3. Right-brain, left-brain
        4. 4.1.4. All a matter of perspective
        5. 4.1.5. Finding the unusual
      2. 4.2. Defining Your Audience: Creating Art That Sells
        1. 4.2.1. Choosing subject matter
          1. 4.2.1.1. In your own backyard
          2. 4.2.1.2. Find the art all around you
          3. 4.2.1.3. See what sells
        2. 4.2.2. Presentation
          1. 4.2.2.1. Push the envelope
          2. 4.2.2.2. Offer great quality
          3. 4.2.2.3. Repurpose the past
  7. II. The Photo Shoot
    1. 5. Composing a Shot Outdoors
      1. 5.1. Shooting with Natural Light
        1. 5.1.1. Proper exposure
          1. 5.1.1.1. ISO
          2. 5.1.1.2. f-stops
          3. 5.1.1.3. Shutter speed
        2. 5.1.2. Using auto settings when shooting outdoors
        3. 5.1.3. Using manual settings for creative control
        4. 5.1.4. Foreground and background
          1. 5.1.4.1. Depth of field
          2. 5.1.4.2. Bracketing
      2. 5.2. Common Outdoor Lighting Situations
        1. 5.2.1. Creating a vivid shot with your back to the sun
        2. 5.2.2. Facing the sun
        3. 5.2.3. Avoiding and exploiting shadows
        4. 5.2.4. Shooting at noon, dusk, and dawn
          1. 5.2.4.1. Shooting at noon
          2. 5.2.4.2. Shooting at dawn or dusk
        5. 5.2.5. Glare and flare
        6. 5.2.6. Shooting glare on water, ice, and snow
        7. 5.2.7. Weather and atmosphere
      3. 5.3. Augmenting Natural Light
        1. 5.3.1. Using flash fill
        2. 5.3.2. Shooting bright lights in daytime
    2. 6. Composing a Shot Indoors
      1. 6.1. Setting Up to Shoot Indoors
        1. 6.1.1. ISO speed
        2. 6.1.2. Manual versus auto settings
        3. 6.1.3. White balance
      2. 6.2. Taking Indoor Pictures without Flash
        1. 6.2.1. Using available light only
        2. 6.2.2. Intentional blur
        3. 6.2.3. Taming available bright light
        4. 6.2.4. Taking advantage of color imbalance
      3. 6.3. Augmenting Indoor Light
        1. 6.3.1. Comparing shooting with and without flash
        2. 6.3.2. Combining indoor and outdoor light
        3. 6.3.3. Using whiteboards
        4. 6.3.4. Adding extra light sources; studio set up
      4. 6.4. Shooting Indoors with Flash
    3. 7. Photographing People and Animals
      1. 7.1. Photographing People
        1. 7.1.1. Traditional posed portraits
          1. 7.1.1.1. Using a backdrop
          2. 7.1.1.2. Smile for the camera
          3. 7.1.1.3. For your more serious subjects
          4. 7.1.1.4. Personalizing a portrait
          5. 7.1.1.5. Finding art in other features
          6. 7.1.1.6. Group portraits
        2. 7.1.2. Candid portraits
        3. 7.1.3. Capturing portraits of inanimate objects
      2. 7.2. Wildlife Portraiture
      3. 7.3. Pet Portraiture
    4. 8. Shooting for Color in Art Photography
      1. 8.1. Discovering How Light Makes Color
        1. 8.1.1. Positioning yourself and your camera
        2. 8.1.2. Using complementary and contrasting colors
      2. 8.2. How Your Camera Interprets Light and Color
        1. 8.2.1. Setting ISO speed for maximum color
        2. 8.2.2. Setting white balance
      3. 8.3. Using an f-stop to Enhance Color
      4. 8.4. Advanced Color Techniques
        1. 8.4.1. Underexposing your photo to enhance color
        2. 8.4.2. Shooting colors in the shade
        3. 8.4.3. Color and the atmosphere
    5. 9. Crafting a Quality Black-and-White Art Photo
      1. 9.1. Why Shoot in Black-and-White?
        1. 9.1.1. A brief B&W perspective
        2. 9.1.2. Shooting architecture
        3. 9.1.3. Shooting portraits
        4. 9.1.4. Shooting for journalism
      2. 9.2. Capturing Black and White
        1. 9.2.1. Creating a B&W image
          1. 9.2.1.1. B&W film
          2. 9.2.1.2. Shooting B&W on a digital camera
        2. 9.2.2. Manipulating a color image to become B&W
        3. 9.2.3. Getting the best quality image
        4. 9.2.4. Understanding the 256 shades of gray
        5. 9.2.5. Defining highlights, midtones, and shadows
        6. 9.2.6. Printing for best quality
    6. 10. Night Art Photography
      1. 10.1. Taking a Shot in the Dark
        1. 10.1.1. Creating a blur-free, flashless night photo
        2. 10.1.2. Using fast film and high ISO settings
        3. 10.1.3. Shooting with a flash
      2. 10.2. Other Nighttime Art Opportunities
        1. 10.2.1. Light your subject from beneath
        2. 10.2.2. Shoot the moon
        3. 10.2.3. Seek nighttime landscapes
        4. 10.2.4. Use reflections
        5. 10.2.5. Seek out shadows and weather
    7. 11. Achieving Creative Results When Shooting
      1. 11.1. Tweaking Automatic Modes and Settings to Achieve Creative Results
      2. 11.2. Playing with Light
      3. 11.3. Come Get 'Yer Effects Here!
        1. 11.3.1. Double exposures
        2. 11.3.2. Panoramic shots
        3. 11.3.3. Reflections
        4. 11.3.4. Zooming while shooting
        5. 11.3.5. Intentional lack of focus
        6. 11.3.6. Intentional underexposure/overexposure
        7. 11.3.7. Making flowing water turn to silk
        8. 11.3.8. Using filters
  8. III. Photoshop Art: Using Software to Enhance or Create Art Photos
    1. 12. Adding New Life to Old Photos
      1. 12.1. Using Automatic Adjustments to Refresh Older Prints
      2. 12.2. Using Manual Adjustments for Fine-Tuning
        1. 12.2.1. Dodge
        2. 12.2.2. Burn tool
        3. 12.2.3. Smart Sharpen/Unsharp Mask commands
        4. 12.2.4. Sponge tool
        5. 12.2.5. Dust & Scratches filter
        6. 12.2.6. Blur tool
        7. 12.2.7. Color Balance
        8. 12.2.8. Removing a horrible shadow
      3. 12.3. Healing Damaged Photos
      4. 12.4. Making the Corrections
      5. 12.5. Tweaking Color in the Digital World
      6. 12.6. Enhancing Sepia and Other Tones
      7. 12.7. Enhancing Shadow, Highlights, Hue, and Saturation
    2. 13. Combining and Manipulating Images
      1. 13.1. Preserving Detail
      2. 13.2. Making an Image Whole Again with Photomerge
      3. 13.3. Seamlessly Introducing Backgrounds in Photographs
      4. 13.4. Creating Art Photos through Symmetry
    3. 14. Using Layers to Create a Theme
      1. 14.1. Using Layers in Photoshop
        1. 14.1.1. Feathering
        2. 14.1.2. Creating a simple two-layer project
      2. 14.2. Creating a More Complex Layer Project
    4. 15. Using Photoshop for Special Effects
      1. 15.1. Photoshop Filter Effects
        1. 15.1.1. Gaussian Blur filter
        2. 15.1.2. Unsharp Mask filter
        3. 15.1.3. Plastic Wrap filter
        4. 15.1.4. Glowing Edges filter
        5. 15.1.5. Watercolor filter
        6. 15.1.6. Sketch filters
          1. 15.1.6.1. Charcoal
          2. 15.1.6.2. Chalk & Charcoal
          3. 15.1.6.3. Graphic Pen
        7. 15.1.7. Emboss filter
      2. 15.2. Constructing a Composite à la Warhol Using Photoshop Filters
      3. 15.3. Making a Background for Your Images
  9. IV. The Final Output: Gallery-Worthy Prints
    1. 16. Managing and Preparing Files
      1. 16.1. Transferring an Image from Your Camera to Your Computer
        1. 16.1.1. From film/scanning
        2. 16.1.2. From a JPEG file
        3. 16.1.3. From a Raw file
      2. 16.2. Are Raw Files a Raw Deal?
      3. 16.3. Understanding the Relationship between File Type and File Size
        1. 16.3.1. Defining and constructing a TIFF file in Photoshop
        2. 16.3.2. Creating a Web Gallery in Photoshop
      4. 16.4. Resolving Resolution Issues
        1. 16.4.1. Interpolation
        2. 16.4.2. Resampling an image
        3. 16.4.3. Changing resolution without resampling
    2. 17. Printing Prep and Printing
      1. 17.1. Discovering Proofs and Printing the Final Product
      2. 17.2. Preparing for Output
      3. 17.3. Making a Contact Sheet
      4. 17.4. Previewing Your Print
    3. 18. Framing and Matting
      1. 18.1. Takin' It to the Mats
        1. 18.1.1. Comparing mat options
        2. 18.1.2. Cutting your own mats
        3. 18.1.3. Creating a mat in Photoshop
      2. 18.2. The Great Frame-Up
        1. 18.2.1. Buying retail
        2. 18.2.2. Buying online; finding Internet deals
        3. 18.2.3. Buying for the bargain
          1. 18.2.3.1. Wholesale deals
          2. 18.2.3.2. Other great deals
      3. 18.3. Putting Together the Frame
  10. V. The Part of Tens
    1. 19. Ten Photo Digital Art Rules
      1. 19.1. Create with Classic Lines and Colors
      2. 19.2. Start with a Good Camera
      3. 19.3. Exploit the Right Light for Your Photo
      4. 19.4. Keep It Small and Spectacular
      5. 19.5. Balance Items Onscreen and on Paper
      6. 19.6. Organize Your Photos into Sets by Themes
      7. 19.7. Know the Art Techniques of Thine Masters
      8. 19.8. Create a Story or Message
      9. 19.9. Capture the Unexpected or Unreal
      10. 19.10. Always Have Your Camera with You
    2. 20. Ten Digital Art Tricks
      1. 20.1. Overexpose and Underexpose
      2. 20.2. Emulate the Masters
      3. 20.3. Shoot on a Cloudy Day
      4. 20.4. Create a Matching Background
      5. 20.5. Meld Layers to Create Motion
      6. 20.6. Build Your Archive of Backgrounds
      7. 20.7. Don't Overdo Effect(s)
      8. 20.8. Use the EditFade Command
      9. 20.9. Keep Your Image in High Res on All Platforms
  11. 21. Telling (And Selling) a Story Using Photo Sets
    1. BC1.1. Crafting a Photo Set from a Storyboard
    2. BC1.2. Classifying Your Shots
      1. BC1.2.1. Related subjects
      2. BC1.2.2. Black and white
      3. BC1.2.3. Color
      4. BC1.2.4. Composition
      5. BC1.2.5. Timelines
      6. BC1.2.6. Patterns
      7. BC1.2.7. Media
      8. BC1.2.8. Theme/emotion
      9. BC1.2.9. Historical perspective
    3. BC1.3. Archiving and Storing Your Shots
    4. BC1.4. Preparing a Set of Prints for Sale
      1. BC1.4.1. Size
      2. BC1.4.2. Printing/polishing in an image editing program
      3. BC1.4.3. Text
      4. BC1.4.4. Framing/matting
      5. BC1.4.5. Pricing
  12. 22. Enhancing Art Photos with Text
    1. BC2.1. Fonts 101
      1. BC2.1.1. Serif and sans serif
      2. BC2.1.2. Font styles
      3. BC2.1.3. Font size
      4. BC2.1.4. Font color
      5. BC2.1.5. Mixing fonts
      6. BC2.1.6. Using fonts effectively
    2. BC2.2. Creating and Tweaking Text
      1. BC2.2.1. Text in Word
      2. BC2.2.2. Text in Photoshop
      3. BC2.2.3. Tweaking text to make it readable
    3. BC2.3. Marrying Text and Photos
    4. BC2.4. Creating an Ad with Text and a Photo
    5. BC2.5. Making Art out of Text