Nikon Americas USA

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Walkabout

Take a photo walk with Nikon pro Lindsay Silverman.

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Photo Tips from Across America

Nikon training specialist, Kristine Bosworth, covers the country and sends photography…

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Image Overlay: Combining Images Together In-Camera

Image Overlay lets you combine multiple images together in-camera

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My A of the Day Project

Mike Corrado on shooting a photograph a day with the COOLPIX A

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In a New York Minute: Images of a Long Weekend

Lindsay Silverman spends a weekend shooting with only one D-SLR and lens…

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One Shot: No Exit

Bill Durrence on ow a simple change can alter a photo’s feeling

Beginner

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Photograph Family and Friends During the Holidays

The holidays are prime picture-taking time. Get some great tips on…

Beginner

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One Shot: Crop Factor

Carol Freeman field tests the new AF-S NIKKOR 80-400mm f/4.5-5.6G ED VR lens

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One Shot: See a Puddle, Make a Picture...or Two

Randy Ziegler on the importance of patience while out shooting

Beginner

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3.9 Rating
No Limits: For Better Photos, Think Like a Photojournalist

David Handschuh on thinking like a photojournalist

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Jody Dole Photographs Objects that Catch His Eye

See how commercial shooter Jody Dole uses anything and everything to…

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For Memorable Family Vacation Photos, Focus First on Family

Tamara Lackey on taking great photos during family vacations

Beginner

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Versatile Views of the World of Wildlife:

Ron Magill field tests the AF-S NIKKOR 80-400mm f/4.5-5.6G ED VR lens

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The Power and Beauty of Bears and Other Animals

When the animal in the viewfinder is a bear, this photographer knows…

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FOCUS First: A System for Better Photos

Mark Alberhasky's 5 step system for taking better pictures

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Destination Asia: A Showcase for the Storytelling Power of Travel Images

Travel shooter Blaine Harrington offers tips for…

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4.7 Rating
'Shooting the Curl' Gets a Whole New Meaning

Welcome to the surf as Clark Little sees it.

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4.4 Rating
Fast Frames: A Quick Guide to Bird Photography

Matt McRay discusses how to get birds to visit your yard so you can…

Beginner

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Wherever the Adventure…

Underwater photos & movies with the COOLPIX AW110

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4.3 Rating
A Pro's Tips for the Best Children's Photos

Tamara Lackey on taking great pictures of kids

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4.2 Rating
Partner Up for Better Pictures

Learn how you can benefit from taking photos with a friend

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New Directions: The D750 Inspires Creating, and Sharing, New Images

Lindsay Silverman shoots with the D750 DSLR

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Getting the "Cool" Look

My daughter, Kiara, wanted some pictures of herself with her new guitar. She was looking for some…

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A Nikon Ambassador's Photography in Cuba

Vincent Versace on photographing the culture and people of Cuba

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4.2 Rating
Capture NX 2: Lesson 4

Discover how to quickly sharpen the eyes of a portrait subject.

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3.4 Rating
Taking Better Photos of Your Kids at Play

Taking photos of your kids while at play make great images; next time you’re…

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4.3 Rating
Live Image Control

Live Image Control lets you preview how certain settings will affect your final image

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4.3 Rating
Video Tutorial Series: Getting Started with your Nikon D3300 DSLR

Series of six videos to help you set-up and shoot and…

Beginner

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Reaction Time

John Solano says that for him, photographing weddings is a lot like photographing sports.

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3.7 Rating
12 Tips for Better Vacation Photos

A dozen easy tips for taking better vacation pictures

Beginner

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3.4 Rating
Elements of Photography

Ideal class for those who want to take great D-SLR photos

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3.3 Rating
Taking Close-up Photos

How do I take close-up photos of flowers and small objects?

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20 Tips for Great Graduation Day Photos

Tips for taking great photos of your young graduate on their big day

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3.6 Rating
Learning How to Use Your Camera's Histogram

The histogram is a useful tool that analyzes tonal range and helps in…

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4.8 Rating
Lucas Gilman

Adventure sports and multimedia storyteller Lucas Gilman is a Nikon Ambassador. Learn more about his…

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4.8 Rating
Create and Publish Your Own Photo Book

A photo book is a great way to share your images with the world.

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Do a Test Run for Important Portrait Shoots

Dave Black discusses setting up shoots in advance

Beginner

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4.3 Rating
Using Fast Shutter Speeds for Action Photos

Lucas Gilman on action photography settings

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2.8 Rating
Capture NX 2: Lesson 6

Discover how to make the colors in a landscape more vivid.

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4.7 Rating
Take a New Look at an Everyday Object

Robin Layton discusses opening your eyes to looking at subjects differently

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A New Sharp Shooter

Mike Corrado on shooting with the Nikon D810

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4.3 Rating
Polarizing Filters Add POW to Pictures

An Easy to Use Accessory, Polarizing Filters Bring out the Color and Definition in…

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3.5 Rating
Understanding Nikon Wireless Connectivity

Learn how to connect your camera and compatible smart device wirelessly

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4.2 Rating
Shooting Abstract Photos that Make the Viewer Guess

Sometimes showing just a hint of your subject can be more compelling…

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You’re the Guest: How to Capture Unique Photos at a Wedding

Abby Liga discusses getting great photos when you're a…

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3.6 Rating
Mentor Series Worldwide Photo Treks

The Mentor Series Worldwide Photo Treks provide an incredible hands-on learning…

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COOLPIX Cameras and Cool Lighting with Speedlights

Lucas Gilman shows you how to use Speedlights with COOLPIX cameras

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Extra Added Attraction: How to Boost the Reach of Your Nikon 1

Mark Alberhasky on using the FT-1 and NIKKOR lenses on…

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Tips for Photographing Mountains

Making the most of mountains in landscape photographs

Beginner

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4.3 Rating
Andrew Hancock

Sports photographer Andrew Hancock is a Nikon Ambassador. Learn more about his photography.

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10 Tips for Shooting Autumn Foliage

Nature photographer Rod Planck offers tips for shooting colorful fall foliage

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Tips from a Model Turned Professional Photographer

See how photographer Nancy Brown turned a 20-year modeling career in…

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CX Format Image Sensor

Nikon 1 digital cameras utilize the Nikon CX-format super high speed AF CMOS imaging sensor.

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4.1 Rating
Active D-Lighting

Active D-Lighting optimizes high contrast images to restore the shadow and highlight details that are…

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Taking Better Photographs on the Water

Harbors, bays, oceans and rivers all have one thing in common—interesting and…

Beginner

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3.1 Rating
Taking Pictures at Dusk and at Night

How do I take pictures at dusk and at night?

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Taking Better Photographs of the American West

When you get a chance to visit the open prairies, and photograph ranchers…

Beginner

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Cat Photography: Capturing Cats in Pictures

With a little patience you too can make great pictures of your pet cat or…

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4.6 Rating
5 Easy Composition Guidelines

Follow 5 easy tips for better photo compositions

Beginner

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3.9 Rating
Basics of Exposure and Camera Controls

Ideal class for those who want to go beyond point & shoot photography

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4.5 Rating
Moose Peterson: How to Photograph Winter Landscapes

Exposing so the Snow’s White and Six Other Tips for Great Winter…

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Shooting a Rock Concert

Whether you're taking photos at a major rock concert or at your child's school performance, these…

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3.5 Rating
Have Fun Shooting Selfies (Self-Portrait) Photos

Tips and tricks for taking great Selfies

Beginner

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Flash Photography the Easy Way

David Tejada's easy-does-it flash tips

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Capturing or Freezing Motion in Photos

Learn how to freeze the motion in an action scene or capture a blur to show…

Beginner

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Bright Idea: Adding Star Power
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Bright Idea: Adding Star Power

Creating a starburst in your photographs

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When to Use Graduated Neutral Density Filters

How to use a graduated neutral density filter to decrease extreme light to…

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4.2 Rating
Composing Photographs

Tips for making better compositions when photographing in the field

Beginner

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4.0 Rating
Moving Pictures: Riding the Rails

Riding the Rails for Smooth Moves

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4.8 Rating
10 Tips on How To Leverage Social Media in Your Photography Business

Dixie Dixon on leveraging social media for your…

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4.7 Rating
Joe McNally

Commercial photojournalist Joe McNally is a Nikon Ambassador. Learn more about his photography.

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4.6 Rating
How-To Take Great Photos at the Aquarium

Tips for photographing the fish and creatures that live under water

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3.9 Rating
Landscape and Travel Photography

Ideal for those who want to take their travel & landscape photography to the next level

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4.4 Rating
Hands On: Range Rover

Lindsay Silverman on the many moods of HDR

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4.7 Rating
Preservation and Protection of Wildlife Through Photography

Photographer Moose Peterson's respect for wildlife and the…

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4.5 Rating
John Shaw: A Photographer's Vision Simplified

See how one of the foremost nature, outdoor and natural history…

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3.8 Rating
7 Tips & Tricks to Taking Better Wedding Photographs

Joe McNally on how to take better wedding portraits

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4.2 Rating
Getting Creative with Photos and Video

Tell better stories using the myriad of fun and artistic features built into Nikon…

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4.4 Rating
Taking Great Portraits with COOLPIX Cameras

See how COOLPIX technologies let you take great portraits

Beginner

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4.7 Rating
Destination Europe: Do a Little Research, Then Go Light on the Gear

Blaine Harrington on travel photography in Europe

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Group Effort: Growing Your Skills in a Camera Club

Benefits of joining a camera club

Beginner

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Taking Great Photographs at Airshows

Learn the "tricks of the trade" from Moose Peterson.

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Tips and Techniques For High Flying Photos

Tom Bol discusses taking photos from hot air balloons, planes and helicopters

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4.3 Rating
The Stories that Can be Told Through Photography

Commercial photographer Arthur Meyerson likes his photos to say the most…

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Walkabout

Hands On

Images for their own sake

I’m sure you’ve noticed that the subject matter of my columns plays off the specific features, capabilities and technologies of Nikon gear, most often new Nikon gear. As senior technical manager, part of my job is to highlight new products in terms of what makes them different, better or, in some cases, unique. And what better place to do that than in this magazine.

But not this time.

Frankly, I’m a little envious of the other photographers who are featured in Nikon World. Their taking-off point is photography, and their stories are driven by pictures—pictures from recent assignments or personal work or classic images, pictures that illustrate their techniques and reflect their ideas and vision. This time, that’s what I’m going to do. This is the picture-driven column, my chance to talk about photos I’m excited about that don’t necessarily have anything to do with a specific camera, lens, Speedlight, accessory or Nikon technology. No photo here was taken because I needed to illustrate, for instance, the advantages of Active D-Lighting or auto bracketing or focus tracking. I took these photos because here were subjects and situations that excited and attracted me.

But not always at first glance. I walked right past the bike on my way to a Napa Valley, California, store. No interest; no photo. But on my way back, I saw that the sun was casting shadows of the bike’s wheel. That’s pretty cool, I thought, and I took a picture. On the LCD I saw a technically okay, pretty boring shot. There was a picture here, but I needed to do something else, something different. I decided to try a technique I’d heard about from Dave Black in which he sets his white balance for a cool blue tone and takes the shot using a Speedlight fitted with a warming gel. (Coincidentally, Dave writes about that technique in his Workshop column in this issue.) I set my white balance in the 3000 Kelvin range, snapped a warming gel on my SB-900 and then employed the VAL technique to get the shot. VAL? Voice Activated Lightstand—meaning I stop a passerby and ask, “Would you hold this flash for me while I take a few photos?” The VAL kindly worked with me as I took ten shots at different flash compensation settings to see how each would affect the photo.

My picture of the tutu and ballet shoes was also the result of taking a walk. I was on-site at a ballet studio in Boston as technical advisor for a Nikon Creative Lighting System DVD featuring Bob Krist and Joe McNally. On a break I walked into another room and saw the slippers and the tutu in the soft light streaming in through a window.

Even though I was on a break I was carrying my camera (I believe in the gospel according to Jay [Maisel]: “No chance you’re going to get the shot if you don’t have a camera with you”); good thing, because the light changed in less than a minute. The appeal of the scene was the mix of hard light and soft textures, shadows and colors. It’s an atmospheric, moody photo that suggests rather than states. Someone who saw it said it could be the cover of a ballet school brochure or a ballet program. I don’t know if I saw that possibility right away, but it’s interesting that perhaps unconsciously I composed it so there’d be room for text.

One technique I’ve been using a lot lately, and for which I actually seek out subjects, is HDR, High Dynamic Range, a process that makes it possible to capture a wide range of tones in a high-contrast scene. HDR involves taking a series of exposures, essentially a bracket of three or five or more images, and then using software to create a single image that depicts the scene’s tonal range. Maybe because I’m so interested in HDR, every time I go out to shoot I see something that suits the technique. The old truck, for instance, which I photographed in Goodsprings, Nevada. I saw a wide range of tones, a strong central subject, dark, massing clouds and dramatic colors. I moved around the truck, shooting five-stop brackets from a number of angles. The photo here is my favorite for the way it shows the power of the truck—and because it offered up a surprise. Because there was a slight breeze, the tree branches on the left moved during my five-shot bracket, giving me a blurred shadow that works very well with the image.

Speaking of shadows, they are the subject of the photo I took at the Santa Monica pier. It was about 7:00 p.m. and the low sun was casting long shadows, but they weren’t what I was looking for. I’d gone to the pier to photograph the merry-go-round that was featured in the movie The Sting. But the shadows, the light, the colors and the shapes stopped me. I took some shots, but something was missing. I waited. People came, and I realized I could use their shapes and the shadows as graphic elements in a photo that was a bit of a mystery. I like that this image is an example of what a lot of photographers have said in these pages: they’re on assignment with plans, ideas, even previsualized photos in mind, but often the best pictures they get come from spontaneous moments. And nope, I never did get to the merry-go-round.

On vacation with my family in Playa Del Carmen, Mexico, we were walking around and, of course, I had my camera, and from a half block away I saw the blue wall. It was my intention to shoot it for color, texture and shape, but as I walked closer I saw the woman coming and realized she’d walk right by the building. I had time to frame up exactly what I wanted. I locked focus on a specific spot and waited for her to get there. I shot four or five frames. This is the one in which she’s in the best position—and there’s that slightly elevated foot. I didn’t see it happening as I took the photo, but it surely brings a sense of motion to the image.

So those are my purely image-driven contributions to the game. I took these pictures because I was inspired by elements like shape, color, light and texture; and by ideas and techniques. I hope you’ll be likewise inspired.

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