Nighttime photography is something that a lot of photographers enjoy; I certainly do, along with countless others. Modern cameras can capture more detail at night than we can see with our naked eyes, revealing entire worlds that couldn’t exist otherwise. However, more than almost any other genre, night photography also challenges your camera equipment to its most extreme. In this article, I will go through some of the top lenses for Nikon cameras if you want to take pictures at night, including information about their low-light performance and depth of field. I cover 20 lenses in this article, so it’s pretty extensive — hopefully, you’ll learn something new about the equipment you need in order to capture good star and nighttime landscape photos.
If you’re like me the ending of one year and the beginning of another is a special time of transition. We have the opportunity to leave the past behind and move forward in new directions to discover what the future holds for us. Every life – like every road – tells a story.
Everywhere in the world, across the course of a year, the sun will be below the horizon just about 50% of the time. Although it can take a while for sunset to fade away completely, it’s safe to say that we spend a huge portion of our lives under dark skies. Normally, nighttime isn’t something that people equate with being awake, of course, but landscape photographers are strange people. In fact, moonlight and the Milky Way can lead to some of the best photos you’ll take, and they are well worth exploring with your camera. In this article, I’ll go through the characteristics that make some lenses better than others for star and nighttime landscape photography.
One of the biggest frustrations with Lightroom’s built-in watermarking tool, is the fact that it often ends up making watermarks appear too soft / blurry, especially when extracting smaller JPEG images. This happens due to Lightroom’s rather poor implementation of watermarking on images. Not only does Lightroom seem to apply sharpening to images before adding a watermark, but also, the resizing algorithm used by the software appears to be pretty bad. No matter what image dimensions one chooses, Adobe has not provided a way to turn off scaling in Watermark Editor, even if one provides transparent PNG / GIF images with the correct dimensions. For this reason, many photographers end up using Photoshop for adding watermarks to images, which certainly does take more time and effort, but certainly delivers much sharper results in comparison. After seeing poor watermarking results, I decided to look into alternative methods to see if there is a way to make watermarks sharper using the same tools. After some experimentation, I came up with two methods that ended up working well and that’s what I am going to share with our readers in this article.
While it seems that adding watermarks to images does little nowadays to deter image theft, watermarks can still be very useful for photographers and business owners for promoting their work and their brands across websites and social media. Unfortunately, for those who are just starting out, adding a simple watermark to images can be a rather painful experience, especially if they are not already familiar with the process using such software tools as Photoshop. Thankfully, Adobe has made it easy to add watermarks to images in Lightroom, allowing one to not only add a watermark to a single image, but also to apply it to all images during the export process, which can save a lot of time and frustration when dealing with batches of images. In this article, I will show how to use the built-in watermark tool that is readily available in Lightroom in order to quickly add watermarks to images.
Although we have already published a detailed review of the JPEGmini Pro software a while ago, a number of readers have reached out to me, asking how to effectively use the software, specifically when extracting images for clients from Lightroom. I have now been using JPEGmini for over a year and both Lola and I have been extracting images from Lightroom in a specific way to get the highest quality JPEG images to our clients, while retaining the smallest file size possible. Previously, we would extract everything at particular resolutions (typically 2048 for smaller JPEGs and full size for print) using 100% JPEG compression for the full sized images for the best possible quality, but extracting hundreds and sometimes even thousands of images turned out to be a headache when it came to storage and file transmission. With JPEGmini, we were able to continue delivering the best images to our clients, with a much smaller footprint. This resulted in both time and cost savings in the long run for us, as we did not have to deal with time-consuming uploads and large USB drives. In this article, I will show how both Lola and I we have been utilizing JPEGmini as part of our Lightroom workflow.
As many of our readers know, there are only a few software packages out there that we always recommend at PL to our readers. One of such software packages is JPEGmini, which in my opinion, is worth every penny, even when paying for it in full. Well, today and tomorrow only, our friends at B&H Photo Video decided to host a really nice special for our readers, by bringing the price of the JPEGmini Pro photo optimization software down to $59.95, which is basically 60% off its original sticker price of $149.95. Considering how much you can do with JPEGmini, that’s one heck of a deal for it! If you do not know about JPEGmini, I would highly recommend to give my JPEGmini Pro review a read, as it details all the feature of the software and explains exactly what it does. In short, JPEGmini is capable of reducing the file size of your JPEG images by up to 80%, while keeping the quality indistinguishable for the viewer.
As a photographer and a photography business owner, I go through a number of activities at the end of each year to close it out, just like many businesses do when performing year-end activities. These activities have become an essential part of my photography workflow, allowing me to continue using a very consistent and reliable method to not only store and archive my images, but also to be ready for future data growth and potential hardware changes. If you have not yet considered year-end activities for your photography, I would recommend to give the below article a read and see if it would suit your workflow. Basically, I have developed a set of procedures that I run on either December 31st, or the first few days of each new year to ensure that my data stays consistent, secure and fully backed up. Most of these procedures highlighted below are related to my current post-processing software of choice, Adobe Photoshop Lightroom, but if you run any other software, you should be able to run through similar steps to make sure that you are set for another year of successful shooting.
Happy holidays dear PL readers! While Spencer and I are still going through all the images we have taken in New Zealand and spending some time with our families, I wanted to mention a killer deal that will be expiring tonight. The full-frame Nikon D750 DSLR (see our detailed Nikon D750 review) camera kit with the 24-120mm f/4G VR lens (recently updated Nikon 24-120mm f/4G VR review) is currently being promoted by Nikon with the free MB-D16 grip / multi-battery pack. On top of this, B&H has pitched in with an additional product to promote this deal even further – they are bundling a few different accessory options, such as a 4 TB external hard drive by Western Digital + 64 GB SanDisk SDXC memory card (my preferred option) or a Rode microphone to give an instant savings of $820. This deal is a real steal, especially considering how superb the D750 camera is, especially when coupled with the 24-120mm f/4G VR. Today is the last day when you can take advantage of this deal, since it will expire at 11:59 PM EST (December 24, 2016).
The title of this article closely resembles a Tarantino movie (and I originally wrote this close to Halloween weekend), but this is another story. It is a story that speaks of lenses, filters and the people behind them. And it describes the difficulties of doing a review when time and the weather aren’t cooperating with you. What you will read is not like a classic review of the new IRIX 15mm f/2.4, but something slightly different. It may deviate from a “normal” technical review, but I think you’ll still get a really good idea of what I think about the lens.