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Friday, April 26, 2013

Guest Post: Anna of Anna Peterson Photography

Our first guest post comes from someone we considered a sister growing up and who we've known for almost 18 years now.  She has such a kind, calming presence and literally exudes creativity (and check out her stunning picture below!).  Needless to say, we are so excited to welcome her to our blog and share her passion and gift with all of you!

So, without further adieu......


Hello! I’m Anna Peterson. I’m so honored to be a guest blogger here on Of Dwelling and Dress! I run a small on-again, off-again blog of my own that I wish was more on than off, but you know how wishing goes. More importantly, I run my own boutique photography business, Anna Peterson Photography. I specialize in portraiture photography, mostly high school seniors. I’ve been rebranding this year and am finally super excited to say that in the next two weeks my rebranding with be finalized with a new website and reimaged Facebook page!

When Roxanne first approached me to be a guest blogger, I wasn’t too sure what I should blog about. Ask anyone and you’ll soon learn that photography is my passion. (Ask my brother and he’ll talk your ear off about how I don’t respect his personal privacy on any family vacation.) My personal favorite camera for any family vacation or any other time is my iPhone—I usually have to be reminded that other people want “real” photos from my “nice” camera. And so I thought I’d share a few tips and tricks I’ve learned to create the best photographs with the camera everyone has on them on a daily basis—their iPhone. Of course, these tips don’t just apply to phone cameras, but also to photography in general.

Check the background


This is one tip I wish would stick in my mind when I’m taking pictures. Little details in the background can clutter a picture and distract from the main subject. You’d be amazed at the difference made taking a few minutes to compose your photograph making sure to get rid of those distracting objects in the background whether it’s the edge of something, trash or other objects lying on the ground, or even a random cord plugged into the wall.

Try different angles


With children, pets, and detailed objects photographs become more interesting when you bring your camera down to eye level. This helps show the subject’s true size in proportion to the background. While you can hold your phone or camera down lower to get the “shot” sometimes it helps when you lower your body so you get the feel for how the photograph is going to turn out. You might even be inspired from this change of perspective.
If bringing your camera down for the photograph doesn’t seem to work, another level to try is shooting from above. These shoots are great for meals, workspaces, the big picture, and almost anything in between. However, if you are shooting children and pets from this angle they will become dwarfed (but that could be the look you’re going for). One thing to watch for when shooting from above is your light source. If it’s right above you, you’ll get a shadow from your camera or phone. This angle really works best when the light is natural and coming from the side. 

Crop your image in camera.


When capturing our everyday life, it’s human nature to want to center everything and make sure that every little detail is in the frame. Why not allow your subject or subjects to spill out of the image? There is an interest created when the mind is forced to fill in the rest of the photograph. And it begs the question, what else is happening just outside the frame?


Use natural light


Turn off your flash on your camera or phone. No flash is harsher than the one on your phone (and most flashes on your cameras are not far behind them). Without a flash you’ll start to see greater depth in your photos. I’ve personally found that a flash will sooner ruin my photo than be any help, as without the flash light that I didn’t even realize was there will shine through. The more you leave your flash off the more you’ll start looking for different light sources and finding you can create a whole different world with just a few well placed candles, lamps, or even in the twilight hours.


Help your camera help you.


Your iPhone camera is smart, but it’s no human. It can’t read your mind and it usually doesn’t know what you want to take a picture of. However, you can help it along by touching your screen where your subject is located. Your camera will then focus where you have just touched and expose for it. Which means when you’re outside on a sunny day and you want to take a picture of someone whose face is in the shade you can and you’ll be able to see that person’s face! (For the most part.) IPhones are not infallible, but with this trick up your sleeve nine times out of ten you’ll get your photograph.

Know your camera applications


I love camera apps on my iPhone. They can completely change a photo from a so-so into a wow photograph. Most of these applications are just editing apps where you can take your photograph with the standard camera app and then import the image. My favorite editing applications are Vsco Cam and Afterlight. If I’m uploading to Instagram, but the cropped image just isn’t as great I will use Squaready. You can also create a mini-collage in Diptic.


Experiment and have fun



{ If you are interested in being a guest blogger on 'of Dwelling and Dress', please email us at ofDwellingandDress@gmail.com with a brief description of your post and example pictures.  We'd love to showcase your creativity and give you a chance to spread the word about your own blog or Etsy shop! }

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