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Huawei unveils Mate 10 and Mate 10 Pro with Leica dual-cam and AI-powered features

Filed Under News: Digital Photography Review

Chinese manufacturer Huawei launched its latest flagship smartphone, the Huawei Mate 10, at an event in Munich today. And like previous high-end Huawei models, the Mate 10 comes with a camera that has been developed in cooperation with Leica—this gets you not only a Leica badge on the device’s back plate but also a very promising looking dual-cam setup that combines a 12MP RGB sensor with a 20MP monochrome chip. 4K video and an 8MP front camera are on board as well.

Both of the dual-cam lenses feature a fast F1.6 aperture and optical image stabilization is on board as well. The high-resolution setup allows for what Huawei calls a 2x lossless zoom, and PDAF combined with laser and depth sensors enables fast and precise autofocus.

Huawei isn't relying on hardware alone though—AI and neural networking are applied to improve the quality of the fake bokeh mode, and object recognition for automatic scene selection also relies on some AI magic. Finally, motion detection is being used to reduce motion blur in low light conditions.

The large 5.9” display comes with a conventional 16:9 aspect ratio, 2K resolution and RGBW HDR technology for high dynamic range and low power consumption. Battery life is further enhanced by a very large 4,000 mAh battery.

In the processor department, Huawei is employing its latest and greatest Kirin 970 chipset—Huawei's first with integrated neural networking capabilities—combined with a generous 6GB of RAM, which should allow for smooth operation of the Android 8.0 ‘Oreo’ OS and Huawei’s EMUI 8.0 software.

All the components are wrapped up in a full-metal body with IP53 rating for splash and dust resistance, and will be available for 700 Euros ($825 USD) globally in a range of colors starting in November.

Huawei Mate 10 Key specifications:

  • Leica-branded dual-camera
  • Dual 12MP RGB / 20MP Monochrome
  • F1.6 aperture
  • OIS
  • 2x lossless zoom
  • 4-in-1 AF with depth, contrast, PDAF and laser
  • dual-LED flash
  • 4K video
  • 8MP front camera
  • 2-inch AMOLED, 2560 x 1440 pixels, 16:9 ratio, RGBW HDR
  • Corning Gorilla Glass
  • EMUI 8.0 / Android 8.0 (Oreo)
  • Hisilicon Kirin 970 CPU Octa-core
  • 64GB storage, 4 GB RAM
  • microSD, up to 256 GB
  • Hi-Res 32bit audio
  • 5mm headphone jack
  • 4000 mAh battery with fast charging

One More Thing

Along with the standard Mate 10, Huawei also launched the Mate 10 Pro. The Pro model shares the camera and most of the standard Mate's characteristics, but comes with an 18:9 6" 2160 x 1080 OLED HDR display and thinner bezels packed into a much sturdier IP67 water and dust resistant body. Memory has also been upped to 128GB storage and 6GB RAM.

The Mate 10 Pro will set you back 800 Euros ($945). We have our hands on a Mate 10 Pro test unit, so look out for further details and a full camera review in the near future.


DxO offers Android model, adds Facebook Live support and battery grip to One camera

Filed Under News: Digital Photography Review

DxO has announced version 3.0 of the iOS app for its 'One' connected camera as well as a beta USB-C Android version of the device. This significant upgrade adds support for Facebook Live broadcasting, with the ability to utilize the iPhone's built-in camera(s), as well as the one on the One (no pun intended). The new software allows users to monitor each camera separately, adjust settings as needed and then effortlessly switch from one to another.

The update also brings with it support for video and still time-lapses. The One uses 'Auto Ramping' to maintain white balance and exposure throughout the sequence in order to avoid 'flicker.' Still images can be saved in Raw format and can also be combined to create a 4K video.

New accessories include a battery pack, which holds up two batteries (each adding 1 hour of 'life'), a tilt stand and a 'cable back door' that allows for extended shooting when using the outdoor housing.

Android users who have been waiting for a One of their own, take note. DxO has developed a One for tablets and smartphones and will be starting an 'Early Access' program in the next several weeks. The Android version uses a USB-C connector that may limit compatibility to those with the newest smartphones, though we've reached out to DxO to see if a microUSB adapter will work.

The new firmware for iOS is available immediately from the App Store. The battery pack is $50 while the tilt-stand and cable back door are available at no charge.

The DxO ONE now supports Multi-Camera Facebook Live and Time-Lapse features as well as new accessories and an Early Access Program for Android

The latest free iOS app update, available free of charge, opens up a number of new opportunities for using the DxO ONE remotely and autonomously, transforming the camera into the perfect photo and video accessory for your iPhone

PARIS – October 16, 2017 – DxO, a key player in digital image technologies, announced a major update to the DxO ONE, its miniaturized and connected professional-quality camera for smartphones and tablets. Available immediately and free of charge, version 3.0 of the DxO ONE iOS app offers the first pro-quality multi-camera solution for Facebook Live and a new time-lapse option featuring exclusive Auto Ramping technology. The DxO ONE ecosystem of accessories now includes an external Battery Pack that doubles the camera’s battery life as well as a Cable Back Door for the device’s waterproof case, allowing you to use the DxO ONE outside or even underwater for extended periods.

“While smartphones have made significant progress in terms of image quality, they don’t come close to the photos and videos a real camera like the DxO ONE can offer. Most importantly, you have to hold them in your hand, and you constantly need them for other things, like making calls, sending messages, or checking your social networks,” explains Jérôme Ménière, DxO’s CEO and founder. “The DxO ONE is the first photo and video camera designed to operate as both a handheld and remote device. It’s even able to function remotely over a long period of time — for example, you can use it outside to record a time-lapse or Facebook Live video. Because it works in perfect harmony with your smartphone, it is the ideal photo and video assistant for this device.”

Multi-Camera Facebook Live capabilities: the ultimate solution for broadcasting professional-quality videos

With its iOS application update to version 3.0, the DxO ONE revolutionizes video publication using Facebook Live by allowing users to instantly and easily create a live video stream. Its revolutionary Multi-Camera mode, which leverages the DxO ONE and both iPhone cameras, gives users the ability to experiment with shots that can’t be captured with the iPhone’s cameras alone, making it easy to create professional-quality video streams.

DxO ONE’s Live Facebook solution offers a set of advanced controls, including a mini-control panel that allows the user to preview all three views to compose shots, adjust lighting, or prepare the subject before shooting and streaming live from different angles. Just like filmmakers, users can switch from one camera to another at the touch of a fingertip, as well as record sound from the DxO ONE’s or the iPhone’s built-in microphone, and switch the sound source during playback.

Wi-Fi control also allows users to control the camera remotely while also sending videos over Wi-Fi or 4G, making it easy to experiment with new compositions. And with its large sensor and ultra-bright optics, the DxO ONE offers a natural bokeh that allows users to capture high-quality video.

Stunning, ready-to-share time-lapse videos

Version 3.0 of the DxO ONE iOS application’s Time-Lapse feature lets you capture stunning videos and share them without going through a complex post-processing process. The easy-to-use interface guides users through the appropriate settings — duration, interval, and time of shooting — and warns them if their selected settings are incompatible. DxO ONE’s unique Auto Ramping technology avoids flicker effects by providing consistent exposure and white balance across all images. Once the settings are established, the phone can be used normally while the camera continues to take pictures. The videos it produces can then be shared immediately.

In addition, the DxO ONE iOS 3.0 application’s Time-Lapse feature uses an intervalometer, transforming the camera into an automatic camera that periodically takes professional-quality images in RAW format at a user-defined rate. Advanced users can also create 4K videos in post-processing.

For long-term use no matter the weather and even underwater, the Cable Back Door connects the DxO ONE to an external battery when the camera is used with the Outdoor Shell — a must-have combination for superb outdoor video and time-lapse imaging.

New accessories for optimizing the DxO ONE experience

The new Battery Pack extends the DxO ONE’s battery life. It includes a Cradle, two rechargeable batteries, and a USB adapter. The Cradle attaches to the bottom of the DxO ONE once the back door has been removed so you can connect either one of the two batteries or the USB adapter. Each battery adds up to one hour of battery life, and the USB adapter allows the DxO ONE to be recharged directly from an external battery.

The new Tilt Stand lets you hold the camera on any surface and choose between five different tilt directions as well as different angles of view, greatly facilitating use of the DxO ONE in standalone mode, or for hands-free remote use when controlled by Wi-Fi.

DxO seeks out Android users

Building on the success of its DxO ONE for iOS, DxO has developed a DxO ONE for Android equipped with a type-C USB connector, making it compatible with recent Android smartphones and tablets.

The DxO ONE Android will be offered in the coming weeks via an “Early Access” program that is open to all. It will allow users to preview the DxO ONE Android and receiving regular updates with the latest application features. The Early Access program will be an opportunity for participants to share their feedback and help improve the DxO ONE experience on Android.

“Since its launch, we have added dozens of features to the DxO ONE, thanks to feedback from users,” said Jean-Marc Alexia, Vice President of Product Strategy. “Today, DxO is responding directly to one of the most frequent requests by launching the Android version, and we will continue to listen to market needs. "

Price & availability

Version 3.0 of the DxO ONE iOS application, along with the application for the Apple Watch, are immediately available for free via the iTunes App Store.

Version 1.0 of the DxO ONE Android will be available for free in the coming weeks via the Google Play Store, as part of the “DxO ONE Android Early Access program”.

The Battery Pack ($59,99 | £49.99 | 59,90 €) will be available at

The Cable Back Door will come with any purchase of a waterproof Outdoor Shell from DxO’s online store.

The Tilt Stand will be provided with the DxO ONE free of charge.


Landscape Photography: It’s All About the Light

Filed Under Digital Photography School, Photography Tips and Tutorials

There are many tools that photographers use for creating compelling landscape photography, but some fail to realize that light is the most important element. We only shoot in those magic hours when the sun’s rays hit our subject at an angle to create a warm glow.

Landscape Photography: It's All About the Light

What many people don’t realize is that there are lots of different types of light that can affect the quality of your landscape images. How you approach this light will make a huge difference in the quality of your photographic portfolio. Let’s get started and talk about a few of our favorite examples of beautiful light.

That magic time for landscapes, of course, is sunrise and sunset, but specifically what other types of light will make or break your images?

Reflected Light

Zion-Narrows- Reflected Light Landscape Photography: It's All About the Light

This picture was taken on one of our expeditions to Zion National Park in Utah. Part of the beauty and excitement of this trip is strapping on your water shoes, grabbing your hiking stick and wading through the river to get some amazing shots.

Reflected light, which can also be called bounced or diffused light occurs when there is direct sunlight reflected off an adjacent surface. The canyons in the Southwest are perfect for this type of light as the color of the canyon is bounced back and reflected giving a warm glow to the walls. The quality of this light is soft, even, and beautiful.

Overcast Light

Morro-Bay- Overcast Light Landscape Photography: It's All About the Light

Morro Bay on the Central Coast of California has many faces depending on the weather. It’s just as striking in the fog as it is on a beautiful sunny day.

This quality of light is found on overcast and foggy days and is very soft and bluish. The color of this light comes from the whole sky, which acts like one big softbox and in the right situation can be very dramatic.


Big-Sur-morning-light Landscape Photography: It's All About the Light

This image was taken in Big Sur, one of our favorite shooting locations. It boasts incredible sunsets, especially in the winter.

A typical backlit picture will have a rim of the sun’s rays around the subject, or you will be able to see the sun as a bright spot in the photograph. If you are using a small aperture, you will be able to get a “sun star” or sun flare effect like this one.

Direct Light

White-Sands-Direct-Light Landscape Photography: It's All About the Light

Because of the reflection of light off the sand, White Sands, New Mexico is an unparalleled photography location.

Direct sunlight is usually found approximately one to two hours after sunrise and one to two hours before sunset. It can be hot and unforgiving while casting strong shadows. This light works great for black and white but can sometimes be overly intense for color photography.

Morning and Evening Horizontal Light

This light is warm and horizontal and is caught during sunrise and sunset. It is horizontal because the sun’s rays are cast at an angle as the sun is rising and setting. This is the prime light for photography due to its combination of low contrast and warm tones. Objects lit directly by this light may seem to glow, as if illuminated from within, with details emerging clearly. Learn to use this light on a regular basis and you will be amazed at the results.


The Canadian Rockies in the fall never fails to disappoint us. The crisp mountain air and the deciduous larch trees make this an amazing photographic location.

Open Shade

In landscape photography, open shade consists of areas not lit by direct sunlight. This is very soft light and is common in forested areas. The best part about this type of light is you can shoot all day and still have the benefit of this soft, dreamy light.


This redwood forest is one of our favorite stops on California’s Big Sur coast.

Combination Light – Direct and Diffused

Here is an example of combination light, both direct and diffused. This was shot on Mt. Whitney in the Eastern Sierra, the highest mountain in the contiguous United States. This image depicts a highly unusual phenomenon. There were rays of morning horizontal sunlight shining from behind us while we were shooting. Only a portion of the mountain was shaded or diffused by the clouds overhead creating a spotlight effect.


This shot was a result of several hours of “waiting for the light” and we were greatly surprised and rewarded for our efforts.

Manmade Light

You don’t really think of manmade light in landscape photography, but here is a great example!

This image was captured on the Big Sur coast at dusk. There were rows of cars waiting to get through a construction site. As the cars were let through, we captured the row of car lights with a long exposure and the camera mounted on a tripod.


Photography Exercise

Try shooting the same subject in the exact same location before sunrise and after sunset. Notice the differences in the light? Are the color and tone different? Do the details look different in the light areas and in the shadows? Comment below and let me know how you do. Enjoy!

The post Landscape Photography: It’s All About the Light by Holly Higbee-Jansen appeared first on Digital Photography School.


Canon’s PowerShot G1 X Mark III is a 24MP APS-C compact with DSLR-like autofocus

Filed Under News: Digital Photography Review

Canon has introduced the PowerShot G1 X Mark III - the third and latest model in its premium G1 X-series. The G1 X Mark III borrows its 24MP APS-C sensor, Dual Pixel AF system and DIGIC 7 processor from Canon's ILCs, such as the EOS 77D and EOS M5, but adds a fixed 24-72mm equivalent F2.8-5.6 zoom and combines them into a relatively compact body weighing just 400g/14oz. In other words, you're essentially getting a fixed-lens version of the EOS M5 that fits in the palm of your hand.

We're already familiar with the sensor and the Dual Pixel AF system and as such, we're hoping for good results from both. The lens has nine elements, three of which are double-sided aspherical, a built-in three-stop neutral density filter, and image stabilization with up to four stops of shake reduction.

The Mark III can shoot continuous bursts at up to 9 fps with AF/AE locked on the first shot or 7 fps with continuous AF. The buffer fills up after around 19 Raw or 24 JPEGs, depending on which mode you're using. Battery life is disappointing, with a CIPA rating of only 200 shots per charge (which assumes you're using the flash 50% of the time). So, while you'll usually get more than this number from the camera, you're still likely to appreciate a second battery or get used to constantly worrying about where your next top-up is coming from.

The Mark III moves away from the blocky design of its predecessors, and now looks nearly identical to its baby brother the PowerShot G5 X, which uses a much smaller 1"-type sensor. The G1 X III has an SLR-style design, featuring dials on the front and back, a built-in flash, an OLED viewfinder and fully articulating LCD. Canon says that the shutter release has been designed in such a way to make it feel similar to a DSLR. The body is sealed against dust and moisture.

Other features include 1080/60p and time-lapse video capture, Wi-Fi with NFC and Bluetooth, and (long overdue in our opinion) a Panoramic Shot Mode.

The PowerShot G1 X Mark III is set to ship in November at $1299. Optional accessories include a dedicated lens hood ($59), underwater housing ($499) and leather case ($99).


The New Flagship G1 X Mark III PowerShot Camera Features the Largest Imaging Sensor Ever in a Canon Point-and-Shoot Camera

MELVILLE, N.Y., October 16, 2017 – Canon U.S.A., Inc., a leader in digital imaging solutions, today announced a new flagship addition to its acclaimed G-series of premium compact cameras, the Canon PowerShot G1 X Mark III. Lightweight and portable without sacrificing the very best in Canon digital imaging technologies, the new G-series flagship features a 24.3- megapixel* APS-C CMOS sensor and Canon’s revolutionary Dual Pixel CMOS AF (Auto-Focus) technology, both firsts for a Canon point-and shoot compact camera offering.

“As we continue to evolve the popular Canon PowerShot G-series line, we remain committed to incorporating both our latest innovations and the features photographers are looking for in an advanced, compact camera,” said Yuichi Ishizuka, president and COO, Canon U.S.A. “With the new PowerShot G1 X Mark III, users will appreciate the quality and overall performance made possible using a APS-C sensor, alongside upgraded capabilities that can enable the capture of amazing photo and video, even in lowlight conditions.”

Ultimate in Compact Image Quality

The new Canon PowerShot G1 X Mark III offers dramatic improvements from the series’ previous flagship, the PowerShot G1X Mark II, headlined by a larger, 24.3-megapixel APS-C CMOS sensor, resulting in fantastic image quality in both stills and video. This dramatic sensor upgrade pairs with a wide-angle 24-72mm** (3x zoom) lens with Optical Image Stabilization featuring a wide f/2.8-5.6 aperture to allow for maximum brightness and increased sharpness in images and an ISO range of 100-25,600. This provides users with the versatility to shoot in low-light scenarios like a dimly lit restaurant which can frame subjects with beautiful background blur.

Technology commonly found in Canon DSLRs and advanced cameras has now arrived for the first time in the PowerShot G-series, as the G1X Mark III will feature Canon’s acclaimed Dual Pixel CMOS AF system. This feature, popular amongst enthusiast and professional users, provides extremely fast and smooth autofocus capabilities across nearly the entire focal plane, allowing for more creative compositions when framing a subject away from the center of a shot.

Versatile and Intuitive Operation

Dust and water resistant, the Canon PowerShot G1 X Mark III is a compact and powerful imaging companion ready for a variety of challenging shooting scenarios. Designed for enthusiast and professional users, it offers a host of useful features to help inspire creativity and improve operability. These include:

• 2.36 million dot Organic LED Electronic Viewfinder provides customization options to match nearly any shooting style or scene
• Touch & Drag AF allows for intuitive operation linking the Electronic Viewfinder and touch panel monitor to quickly adjust focus targeting without looking away from the viewfinder, or using Smooth Zone AF to effortlessly track subjects with the touch of a finger.
• 3.0 inch Vari-angle Touch LCD Monitor helps capture the perfect shot from a variety of challenging angles, including overhead or low-angle shooting.
• The G1 X Mark III is capable of fast continuous shooting up to approximately 7 frames per second (fps), or up to 9fps with AF fixed – working easily with Dual Pixel CMOS AF to track even the most fleeting of subjects with ease.
• A New Shutter Release function offers a sophisticated sense of operation, similar to high-end EOS models, providing a comfortable hold during continuous shooting

Canon Technologies Worthy of a Flagship

With technology ranging from HD video capabilities to the latest in connectivity features, the G1 X Mark III is versatile enough to achieve high-level performance on the go. Additional features include:
• Instantly connect to a smart device* via built-in Wi-Fi***, NFC^ or Bluetooth^^ to facilitate easy sharing with friends and family or utilize the Camera Connect app to shoot remotely.
• Panoramic Shot Mode functionality allows users to easily capture panoramic photos, simply be swinging the camera while shooting either vertically or horizontally.
• Capture Full HD 1080/60p Video with high ISO speed shooting and smooth accurate focus when used alongside Canon’s Dual Pixel AF technology, while 5-axis movie IS helps reduce the effect of camera shake when shooting handheld
• Easily capture picturesque Time-Lapse Movies with intuitive settings that help determine intervals and exposure

The Canon PowerShot G1 X Mark III is scheduled to be available in November 2017 for an estimated retail price of $1299.00¹. In addition the Canon Lens Hood LH-DC110, Waterproof Case WP-DC56 and Deluxe Leather Case PSC-6300 for the PowerShot G1 X Mark III will be available for an estimated retail price of $59.99, $499.99 and $99.99 respectively ¹. For more information please visit

*Image processing may cause a decrease in the number of pixels.

** 35mm film equivalent.

***Compatible with iOS® versions 9.3/10.3, Android™ smartphone and tablet versions 4.4/5.0/5.1/6.0/7.0/7.1. Data charges may apply with the download of the free Canon Camera Connect app. This app helps enable you to upload images to social media services. Please note that image files may contain personally identifiable information that may implicate privacy laws. Canon disclaims and has no responsibility for your use of such images. Canon does not obtain, collect or use such images or any information included in such images through this app.

^ Compatible with Android™ smartphone and tablet versions 4.4/5.0/5.1/6.0/7.0/7.1.

^^ Compatible with select smartphone and tablet devices (Android™ version 5.0 or later and the following iOS® devices: iPhone 4s or later, iPad 3rd gen. or later, iPod Touch 5th gen. or later) equipped with Bluetooth® version 4.0 or later and the Camera Connect.

¹Availability, prices and specifications subject to change without notice. Actual prices are set be individual dealers and may vary.

Canon PowerShot G1 X Mark III specifications

Body type
Body typeLarge sensor compact
Body materialMagnesium alloy
Max resolution6000 x 4000
Image ratio w:h3:2
Effective pixels24 megapixels
Sensor photo detectors26 megapixels
Sensor sizeAPS-C (22.3 x 14.9 mm)
Sensor typeCMOS
ProcessorDIGIC 7
Color spacesRGB, Adobe RGB
Color filter arrayPrimary Color Filter
ISOAuto, 100-25600
White balance presets7
Custom white balanceYes
Image stabilizationOptical
CIPA image stabilization rating4 stop(s)
Uncompressed formatRAW
JPEG quality levelsFine, normal
File format
  • JPEG (Exif v2.3)
  • Raw (Canon 14-bit CR2)
Optics & Focus
Focal length (equiv.)24–72 mm
Optical zoom3×
Maximum apertureF2.8–5.6
  • Contrast Detect (sensor)
  • Phase Detect
  • Multi-area
  • Center
  • Selective single-point
  • Tracking
  • Single
  • Continuous
  • Touch
  • Face Detection
  • Live View
Autofocus assist lampYes
Digital zoomYes (4x)
Manual focusYes
Normal focus range10 cm (3.94)
Macro focus range10 cm (3.94)
Number of focus points49
Screen / viewfinder
Articulated LCDFully articulated
Screen size3
Screen dots1,040,000
Touch screenYes
Screen typeTFT LCD
Live viewYes
Viewfinder typeElectronic
Viewfinder coverage100%
Viewfinder resolution2,360,000
Photography features
Minimum shutter speed30 sec
Maximum shutter speed1/2000 sec
Exposure modes
  • Program
  • Shutter priority
  • Aperture priority
  • Manual
Built-in flashYes
Flash range9.00 m (at Auto ISO)
External flashYes (via hot shoe)
Flash modesAuto, on, sl0w synchro, off
Drive modes
  • Single
  • Continuous
  • Self-timer
  • Remote
Continuous drive9.0 fps
Self-timerYes (2 or 10 secs, custom)
Metering modes
  • Multi
  • Center-weighted
  • Spot
AE Bracketing±3 (3 frames at 1/3 EV steps)
Videography features
FormatMPEG-4, H.264
  • 1920 x 1080 @ 60p / 35 Mbps, MP4, H.264, AAC
  • 1920 x 1080 @ 30p / 24 Mbps, MP4, H.264, AAC
  • 1920 x 1080 @ 23.98p / 24 Mbps, MP4, H.264, AAC
  • 1280 x 720 @ 30p / 8 Mbps, MP4, H.264, AAC
Storage typesSD/SDHC/SDXC card (UHS-I supported)
USB USB 2.0 (480 Mbit/sec)
HDMIYes (micro HDMI)
Microphone portNo
Headphone portNo
Wireless notes802.11b/g/n + NFC + Bluetooth
Remote controlYes (wired or smartphone)
Environmentally sealedYes
Battery descriptionNB-13L lithium-ion battery & charger
Battery Life (CIPA)200
Weight (inc. batteries)399 g (0.88 lb / 14.07 oz)
Dimensions115 x 78 x 51 mm (4.53 x 3.07 x 2.01)
Other features
Orientation sensorYes
Timelapse recordingYes

What you need to know: Canon G1 X Mark III

Filed Under News: Digital Photography Review

Canon PowerShot G1 X Mark III

Canon's G1 X Mark III is, as the name implies, the third iteration in the company's range-topping large-sensor enthusiast compact series. However, what the name doesn't make clear is that it's a significant departure from its predecessors, in terms of both size and capability.

Rather than mimicking one of the older G series modes, as the original G1 X did, the Mark III most closely resembles the 1"-sensored G5 X: a small, thin body with lots of direct control and a centrally mounted electronic viewfinder.

Sensor size difference

Unlike the G5 X, though, the G1 X III does not use a 1"-type sensor. Despite being packaged in a smaller body than its immediate predecessor, Canon has managed to fit a larger sensor into the camera. It's a full APS-C-sized sensor or, at least, the Canon 1.6x crop version of that format. This makes it 27% larger than the chip in the G1 X I and 36% larger than the region of its sensor the Mark II could use.

This means, in equivalent terms, the new camera will receive over 1/3EV more total light, when shot at the same f-number and shutter speed. However, equivalence only tells us about the potential for one system to out-perform another. The actual difference depends on the specific technology used...

Sensor performance

And, from our experience with Canon's 24MP Dual Pixel sensor, we know it'll perform pretty well: better at high ISO sensitivities than the chip in the older G1 X models and with less noise at low ISO, giving more flexible files with greater usable dynamic range.

And that's before we consider the additional utility of its Dual Pixel design: the ability to provide depth-aware phase detection autofocus across most of the frame. So long as the camera can drive its focus fast enough, this should provide the ability to track subjects pretty convincingly, compared to the older G1 X models and most competitors.

Video spec

The other thing that Dual Pixel's depth awareness brings is decisive autofocus while shooting video. This means that getting the camera to track a subject, or 'rack' focus smoothly between two points is as simple as tapping on the screen.

The G1 X Mark III gets a slight tweak over its predecessor, in that it can now shoot 60p video footage, rather than topping out at 30p. This either allows smoother capture of fast motion or the ability to shoot slow-motion (by filming at 60p and outputting via video editing software at 24p).

The G1 X III also has a built-in 3EV ND filter, meaning that you can shoot video at its wider apertures, even in bright light.

Sadly, every Canon we've seen using this chip produces slightly blurry video with a little less detail than the nominal resolution would imply. Even if the G1 X Mark III somehow manages to improve on previous models, the increasingly pressing question remains: 'whither 4K, Canon?'

Lens range

The main means by which Canon has managed to make the G1 X III smaller than its predecessor is the inclusion of a shorter and slower zoom lens. Whereas the Mark II was able to include a 24-120mm equivalent zoom, the Mark III offers a more modest 24-72mm equivalent. It means doing without the classic 85-100ish millimeter equivalent focal lengths that are especially well suited to portraiture, but the 24-70mm range is a widely used and well-respected range.

However, while the F2.8-5.6 maximum aperture range of the Mark III might sound like a big step down from the more impressive sounding F2.0-3.9 of its precursor, the practical differences is smaller than this would seem to imply. The larger sensor (and hence lower crop factor) of the G1 X III means its F4.5-9.0 equivalent range isn't as different from the F3.8-7.5 equivalent of the Mark II as the actual F-numbers make it sound.

Compared to the G1 X Mark II

The G1 X Mark I was one of the first large sensor enthusiast zoom compacts, meaning that it defined expectations of what could be achieved. Indeed, we were impressed – back in early 2012 – that Canon had fitted such a large sensor and flexible lens range into a camera so close in size to its small-sensor forebears, such as the G12.

The G1 X III may have a shorter, slower zoom than its predecessor, but it's a much smaller camera and one that should have continuous focus performance to do justice to its 7 frame per second shooting.

Compared to the competition

However, just six months later, 'what's possible' got redefined again. In July 2012, Sony unveiled the DSC-RX100, a 1" sensor camera with a 28-100mm equivalent zoom in a truly minuscule body.

So, whereas the G1 X had no peers when it was launched, the Mark III, with its 24-72mm F4.5-9.0 equivalent zoom will have to compete with the cheaper, 24 frame per second capable RX100 V with its 24-70mm F4.9-7.6 equiv. lens and highly capable AF.

In addition to this potential for greater image quality, the RX100 V can also shoot impressive 4K video and, despite its much smaller form factor, promises slightly better battery life (a CIPA rating of 220 shots per charge, rather than 200). As always in reality you're likely to get more than this number from both cameras, but these are pretty modest figures.

Impressively small, steeply priced

The Canon PowerShot G1 X Mark III is an interesting-looking camera. It's an impressively small camera with a useful zoom and all the benefits that the company's Dual Pixel sensor should bring.

However, against the likes of Sony's RX100 series, Panasonic's LX10/15 and Canon's own G5 X and G7 X II models, it will inevitably struggle to set a new bar for enthusiast zoom compacts, in the way its progenitor did.

It's also an expensive camera: $1299 makes the G1 X Mark III one of the priciest compacts on the market. But the prospect of a compact camera with Canon JPEG color, Dual Pixel focus and extensive control is something we look forward to testing.


How to do Abstract Nature Photography

Filed Under Digital Photography School, Photography Tips and Tutorials

Photography, especially nature photography, is the art of capturing a scene to represent a slice – in space and time – of reality. Right? Well, not exactly, not always. That’s definitely part of it, but from very early on in the history of the art, photographers have experimented with the possibilities and limits of technique and imagination to create abstract art. Art that aims not to be accurate, but to let the imagination run free to create an effect disconnected from the obvious.

Abstract nature photography 01

So what exactly is abstract photography? And can nature photography be abstracted? Should it be?

What is abstract photography?

The word itself comes from the Latin abstractus, which means drawn away or detached, and is often used in opposition to concrete. In terms of art, the abstract is a space for impression and imagination, for the elusive, for fuzzy borders. That doesn’t mean abstract photography is blurry and dim – it can be bright, clear, and sharp. It just doesn’t aim at the common, concrete representation of the world that we’re used to. That’s why abstract nature photography is so intriguing.

Abstract nature photography 02

By creating a distance from form, abstract art opens up a space to explore associations, feelings, and reactions. Because it lacks an anchor for your interpretation, there is room for an uninhibited association. Through detachment from the concrete, you’re allowed to create your own way.

Abstract nature photography 03

Capturing nature with photography

In nature photography, most work tries to clearly capture an object, a scene, or a process – to the point where the photography might cross from artistic into scientific. Abstract nature photography is obviously different in that it doesn’t try to represent physical reality. Its potential is to create something ethereal from the ordinary, to find something unique in the mundane.

To create abstract nature photographs, you need to step beyond the obvious and try to capture a sensation, a mood, a movement – things that might not be part of physical reality, but are just as real to the artist and the viewer. Think of it as music, using very concrete instruments and elements to create a reaction beyond that of the individual notes and sounds.

Abstract nature photography 04

Getting started

To create something abstract, you need to begin with something concrete. Painters create abstract art using concrete tools: their paints, their substrate, brushes or other painting tools, and their imagination.

Photographers use different tools, but a more significant difference is that the artist is inescapably aware of the reality from which the abstraction in the finished work stems. However, the viewer’s vantage point is the same, whether the piece of art is an abstract painting or an abstract photograph.

Abstract nature photography 05

The camera and your imagination are the only limitations on how you create abstract art. Below I list some easy ideas to begin experimenting with because by now I hope you’re intrigued enough to try your hand at abstract nature photography. To be clear, all of these tips also work for abstract art that has nothing to do with nature photography, but they focus on abstract art rooted in nature photography.

1. Distance

Getting very close to something or far away from it are great ways to create abstractions. We don’t often get that view in our everyday life, so it’s easy to disconnect what’s captured from what’s immediately familiar.

Here is an example from the realm of macro photography:

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And an abstract photograph taking advantage of an unusually distant perspective:

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2. Focus

Just because something is abstract doesn’t mean it has to be blurry or unfocused, but playing with focus is certainly one way to make a scene abstract. This requires that you use manual focus.

By either squinting or defocusing your eyes, you can get an idea of what the scene might look like as an out-of-focus image. Use that to find an interesting scene – just because something is out of focus doesn’t mean it’s interesting! Play around, and also try combining it with movement (see next point).

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3. Time

Time is always of the essence when it comes to photography, and abstract photography is no exception. By combining a chosen exposure time with some movement you can create some really interesting abstract art. Your exposure time can be anything from a tiny fraction of a second to several minutes (or even longer), and in terms of movement, it can either come from the subject moving (e.g., light painting), or from the camera moving (e.g., intentional camera movement).

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A bonus for advanced (and daring) photographers

Early photographic attempts at abstract art were based on the medium itself: the metallic or glass plates or sensitized paper in combination with the necessary chemicals used to create photographs, and light (without a lens). This kind of extreme back-to-basics experimentation also works with a digital camera.

For instance, through something called refractography, where a naked sensor is exposed to light reflected from a refractive object. It’s both beyond the scope of this article and my photographic experience, so I won’t talk more about it, but I thought it was worth mentioning. A quick warning, though: removing your lens from your camera always exposes the sensor to dust, so doing photography without a lens is obviously not healthy for your sensor. You’ve been warned.

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For photography newbies, trying your hand at abstract photography is a great way to get to know your camera and try out different photography techniques: using manual focus, light painting, intentional camera movement, and so much more. For more advanced photographers, it’s a fun way to explore and expand your art and to try something new.

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What do you think of abstract nature photography? Have you tried it? Please share your photos and thoughts in the comments below.

The post How to do Abstract Nature Photography by Hannele Luhtasela-el Showk appeared first on Digital Photography School.


ICYMI: Canon 28mm F2.8 IS USM sample gallery

Filed Under News: Digital Photography Review

ISO 100 | 1/800 sec | F8

Canon's 28mm F2.8 IS USM may not be the most exciting lens in the company's lineup, but it's reasonably affordable, lightweight and solid. As fall weather begins to hit Seattle, we find ourselves visiting the sunny images of this gallery and thinking fondly of summertime past. Take a look to see what this little lens can do.


HDR is enabled by default on the iPhone 8 Plus, and that’s a really good thing

Filed Under News: Digital Photography Review

Capturing HDR (high dynamic range) photos using an iPhone or iPad camera isn’t a new feature, but using it in the iPhone 8 Plus is the first time I’ve been wowed by it.

HDR images are balanced and realistic, to the point where you may not even think about whether a photo is HDR or not. In fact, in the iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus, Apple is so confident in the results that HDR is an automatic setting. When I mentioned to a friend that I was testing the HDR feature, he visibly winced, but there’s no need: Apple’s implementation shows that the term “HDR” doesn’t have to be associated with the garish, hyperreal look of a lot of HDR imagery. They’re often just darn good photos.

HDR Auto by default

On iPhone 7, iPhone 7 Plus, and earlier models, even under iOS 11, the HDR mode can be manually turned on, off, or set to Auto in the capture interface. On those devices, Auto means the camera decides whether HDR should kick in to improve a photo when capturing scenes under low light or with a lot of tonal contrast (such as a bright sky and dark foreground). A small yellow “HDR” icon appears at the top of the screen when it’s active.

Capturing the HDR photo saves two images: the original metered image and a single HDR version that is a blend of three exposures (regular, light, and dark, which are recorded and combined in-camera, not saved as individual images). You can opt to hold onto that original by going to Settings > Camera > HDR (High Dynamic Range) and choosing Keep Normal Photo.

For the iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus (and the forthcoming iPhone X), however, auto HDR is enabled by default. And it's not exactly the same HDR effect used by previous devices. The 8 and 8 Plus include an image sensor with larger pixels and improved silicon – a new ISP (image signal processor) and more powerful A11 Bionic main processor. Together they add more processing oomph, resulting in more dramatic HDR effects – without taking it too far.

I tested using an iPhone 8 Plus, but the feature applies to the iPhone 8 and iPhone X, as well.

HDR in the Real World

Taking the iPhone 8 Plus outside on a sunny day provided dramatic results. In fact, it may subtly alter the way you take photos with the iPhone. Bright areas, such as clouds in the sky, appeared blown out while framing the shot. Typically, the way to compensate for that would be to reduce the exposure before you take the photo (tap the screen to set the focus and exposure, and then drag the brightness indicator down to darken the scene). However, in the captured photo, the HDR feature restored detail in the clouds and often presented blue skies where they weren’t visible in the preview.

Preview image
Final image

If you’re shooting with Live Photos turned on (which records a few seconds of video around the still image), when you review your images in the Photos app, the “before” image briefly appears before cross-dissolving into the final HDR image.

Comparing iPhone 8 Plus and iPhone 7 Plus

Capturing the same scene with an iPhone 8 Plus and an iPhone 7 Plus reveals general improvement in the new model. Although both cameras’ HDR did a good job dealing with overexposed clouds, the iPhone 8 Plus tended to offer more graduated tones. Overall, it also did a better job of filling in shadows; the iPhone 7 Plus pulled more toward reducing exposure throughout to compensate for the brightness.

HDR photo with iPhone 7 Plus
HDR photo with iPhone 8 Plus

That adjustment is welcome when photographing people. Often you don’t want to turn on HDR for portraits, because the effect exaggerates the contrast in facial features. But if Auto HDR is always available, you won’t have that control (unless you turn off Auto HDR in the Camera settings). Since the iPhone 8 Plus is also lifting the shadows, the effect isn’t as pronounced.

iPhone 7 Plus iPhone 8 Plus

Sometimes, Auto HDR didn’t engage under conditions when I expected it would, and still produced good results. When photographing in low-light, the iPhone 8 Plus turns first to increasing ISO and other software processing to create a usable image.

iPhone 8 Plus telephoto lens, no HDR
iPhone 8 Plus wide angle lens, no HDR


Making HDR a transparently automatic feature on the iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus, and iPhone X is a smart move on Apple’s part. Intelligent HDR application was one of the things that made the Google Pixel's camera so good, so it seems wise for Apple to follow suit. Although Auto HDR can be turned off in the Camera settings, letting you choose when to activate HDR mode, in my testing I found little reason to do so.


Five Creative Lenses That Will Make Your Photos Pop

Filed Under Cameras and Equipment, Digital Photography School

The drive to be creative is what focuses many people in photography. One variable you can alter to help you create photographs that really stand out is the lens. There are several different options for choosing creative lenses, depending on your taste.

In this article, you’ll see five very different kinds of lenses, and what they are capable of bringing to your photography. It’s always a good idea to have a lens that capable of something totally different, which will allow your photos to stand out from the crowd.

Five Creative Lenses That Will Make Your Photos Pop

The fisheye lens is used in this photo has captured a wide scene. There is some distortion on the edge of the image, but with the lines all leading in, this works well.

1 – The fish-eye lens

This lens is always great fun to work with, it’s a versatile lens that can be used for both portraits and landscapes. A fish-eye lens has several great applications so let’s take a look at those:

  • Wide-angle lens – This can act as a super wide-angle lens, and if you decide not to carry a wide angle lens the fish-eye makes a decent alternative. The main constraint is the distortion, this means keeping the horizon line straight.
  • The Earth’s not flat! – You can prove the Earth is not flat with a fish-eye lens. Simply position the horizon line near the top or bottom of the frame, and let distortion do the rest.
  • Embrace the distortion – Using a fish-eye means working with the way lines get distorted. This has great application for portrait photos, as those lines lead up to your model.

The fish-eye is a great lens to play with, which is why it’s such a popular lens. It’s great for getting a lot of the scene in your frame, but is, therefore, challenging to use. Those who embrace the challenge of this lens will be reward with some amazing results, so go out and try one.

Five Creative Lenses That Will Make Your Photos Pop

The fish-eye lens can be great for super wide landscape photos.

2 – The Lensbaby for something quirky

Lensbaby is a company that makes a range of lenses that are small, comparatively cheap, and not too heavy. The lenses they make have diversified over the years. The Lensbaby Composer was their original concept. The Composer lens allows the user to change the area in the frame that has the sharpest focus. It does this by allowing you to change the plane of focus using a swivel head.

  • Abstract bokeh – Shifting the angle of the composer lens will give you stretch bokeh. The best way to get this effect is to photograph some fairy lights, that are deliberately out of focus.
  • Portrait photos – Lensbaby lenses are excellent at drawing your eye to the model, by minimizing the background. Once again with the Composer, you can focus your sweet spot on the persons face, and surround them with bokeh!
  • Landscape photos – While not its strength, a Lensbaby can be used for interesting landscape photos. This works best when there is an out of focus area in the frame, which the Lensbaby Composer can further blur out into stretch bokeh. The effect is not dissimilar to a tilt-shift lens, and the subject of the photo should be sharp.

The Lensbaby Composer creates interesting bokeh around the subject.

3 – The 50mm f/1.2 is a creative lens

The nifty fifty is one of the first lenses that many photographers buy, with the less expensive f/1.8 version being a popular choice. There are a plethora of other prime lenses that can be used creatively like the 50mm f/1.2, though f/1.2 is at the extreme end of the large aperture scale. The comparison to make is a fish-eye lens to a wide angle, and here, an f/1.2 to an f/1.8 lens.

The 50mm f/1.2 is an excellent choice for those wanting to explore bokeh in their photographs. The depth of field is incredibly narrow, and getting sharp focus on your subject can be tricky. In the evening, positioning lights behind the subject, in the out of focus area will produce bokeh.

Want to get even more creative? Try creating different shaped bokeh, by placing a circular disk with a cut-out area in front of your lens.

Five Creative Lenses That Will Make Your Photos Pop

At f/1.2 the bokeh is very smooth in this image, and the plane of focus is very narrow.

4 – Up close it’s a different world! Use a macro lens.

The world can look very different with just a little bit of magnification, and macro lenses are a good place to start. This form of photography is a niche all of its own, and there are many pieces to it. Those who wish to really excel at macro photography will need to invest in the correct lighting gear and a good tripod. There is plenty you can achieve with a macro lens to start you on the path of macro photography.

  • Flower photography – A good macro lens is often the starting point for flower photography. Now, of course, you can take photos without doing macro photography, but getting in closer allows for more dramatic results.
  • Water droplets – Combined with the correct off-camera flash there is a lot of photography you can do with water droplets.
  • Detail photos – Macro lenses are very good for focusing on one area, and bringing out the detail. Close up photos of money is one example of how this can be applied.
Five Creative Lenses That Will Make Your Photos Pop

Food photography can be a good subject for your macro lens.

5 – Use a tilt-shift lens for more interesting landscapes

The tilt-shift lens has two main purposes, these are to correct the perspective of a photo, and to create a miniature world look. These lenses were originally designed with architectural photographers in mind, so that tall buildings didn’t bow inwards in the frame. The more creative use of these lenses is to create a miniature world. The lens can selectively focus the middle area of the frame, with the top and bottom blurred out. The lens is on the expensive end, and as the effect can be produced by

A tilt-shift lens can selectively focus the middle area of the frame, with the top and bottom blurred out. The lens is on the expensive end, and as the effect can be produced by post-processing you will need to consider whether or not you want to invest in this kind of creative lens.

Five Creative Lenses That Will Make Your Photos Pop

The tilt-shift effect miniaturizes objects in the frame. This effect can be achieved both in camera and by post-processing.

Which creative lens will you choose?

There are many lenses available, so which of these creative lenses would you choose if you were to buy one? Have you already have a lens like this, how has your experience with it been?

Is there a project you’d like to work on, where you’d need a lens like one of those listed above? Do you use another creative lens, not mentioned here? As always we look forward to your comments and feedback.

Five Creative Lenses That Will Make Your Photos Pop

The macro lens is great for exploring nature, be it flowers or insects.

Five Creative Lenses That Will Make Your Photos Pop

The Lensbaby can be used to create abstract bokeh.

Five Creative Lenses That Will Make Your Photos Pop

The 50mm f/1.2 lens can create shaped bokeh, this is done by covering the lens with a disc, and cutting the shape in the center of that disc.

The post Five Creative Lenses That Will Make Your Photos Pop by Simon Bond appeared first on Digital Photography School.


Tips for Taking Documentary Style Travel Photos

Filed Under Digital Photography School, Photography Tips and Tutorials

Documentary style photography has long been of great fascination to me. The sheer act of photographing people and places to document spontaneous moments and the imperfections associated with it gives such photography, and the photographer, a sense of being authentic, real, and free to exercise his/her creative freedom.

Officially, documentary style photography has many technical definitions. As per Wikipedia, documentary style of photography is used to chronicle events and environments in a naturally occurring state very much like photojournalism. I like to think of a documentary style of photography as the letting go of my inhibitions and preconceived notions of perfection. That I’m documenting people and places in their natural environment – being or doing what they do on any given day.

Tips for Taking Documentary Style Travel Photos

This scene literally happened right in front of me in Jaipur, India – the classic story of the billy goats!

I find that by approaching travel photography in a documentary fashion, I am able to have a richer travel experience. Because I can relieve my mind of the pressures of photographing just like everyone else and also walk away with some unique frames that speak to my own experiences.

To that end, here are a few tips to keep in mind for a documentary style approach towards your travel photography.

#1 – Be present in the moment

Being present in every moment of every day is a life lesson we all can benefit from. It doesn’t just apply to travel photography. Great moments happen every day around us that are worth documenting not just for our clients but also for ourselves so that we can live a richer, fuller life.

Tips for Taking Documentary Style Travel Photos

People watching is a great exercise in training your eye to really catch that which is unusual and unique to a place – these boys in the market in Jaipur were observing me just as much as I was observing them!

By training your mind to really live life in the moment and not worry about all the other distractions will also help you really “see” what is around you. More often than not, you likely travel with a very tight agenda and timeline. No sooner than you get to your destination, you are already mentally prepared to move on to the next stop. Instead, try and plan a single excursion for a day and really focus on learning and experiencing that place or activity before moving on.

#2 – Be observant of your surroundings

Life is happening all around you all the time. People interacting with each other, people interacting with nature, nature putting on a grand show during sunrise, sunset, or even during a thunderstorm. But don’t wait for some preconceived notion of the perfect moment to take your camera out and take a photo.

At the same time, don’t see the world simply through your viewfinder. Observe the scene, anticipate the shot that you really want to get and be ready to take the shot. Don’t just fire away at every situation only to get home to realize that you completed missed the moment and hence missed the shot as well.

Tips for Taking Documentary Style Travel Photos

I once found myself in the middle of a village festival/ritual when I was traveling in India. I had no idea what was going on but knew I had to document this. Luckily a female photographer was somewhat of a rarity in this village and I was given a special seat in the middle of all the action (without a word spoken amongst me and these women)! It was fascinating to see and experience.

Tips for Taking Documentary Style Travel Photos

I later found out that these women were taking one of the female members of their family to each house to get blessings as she was supposed to be possessed by a female deity and have god-like powers…certainly an experience I will never forget!

#3 – Be real about your travel photography goals

A very famous travel quote says, “We travel not to escape life, but so that life does not escape us” really hits the nail on the head for me. Be real about why you travel and what you want to gain out of each travel experience. If you are traveling to a marketplace and want to get a true sense of local lifestyles and customs, then look for naturally occurring scenes. Don’t look for people that you can pose or stage to get your shot.

Tips for Taking Documentary Style Travel Photos

This is by no means a perfect shot but I love the fact that this angle shows just how crazy transportation choices can be in smaller villages and towns in some countries!

#4 – Be aware of your gear choices

Packing for any sort of travel is an art in itself, especially if you are going away for an extended period of time. Documentary style travel photography requires a slightly different mindset in terms of gear than say perhaps wildlife or portrait photography.

I find that for documentary style travel photography a zoom lens like the ultra-wide angle focal length like the Canon 16-35mm f/4 or one like the Canon 24-70mm f/2.8 works well for me. While a fast lens is ideal, I don’t usually find myself photographing at an aperture lower than f/4 or f/5.6. More often than not, I have more than one subject in the scene and also want to capture some of the background in order to provide content to the shot.

Tips for Taking Documentary Style Travel Photos

I was in Rome for three days this past summer but couldn’t get the famous Spanish Steps without people no matter what time of the day I tried. So instead, I chose to embrace the crowds and showcase this famous monument as the tourist attraction it really is!

#5 – Be confident in your skills

Documentary style photography is generally quite fast paced. You are trying to capture a scene as it is playing out in front of you. You don’t really have the time or the opportunity to re-compose the shot and then click the shutter. However, this does not mean

However, this does not mean that you have to just fire away at the maximum fps (frames per second) that your camera can handle, then pick the best of the lot in post-processing. Instead, use your technical as well as artistic skills to read the scene, analyze the light, assess the right camera settings, imagine the outcome, anticipate the shot and then take the picture. Oh, by the way, bear in mind that you will not likely get a redo.

Portland Mountains from the flight - Tips for Taking Documentary Style Travel Photos

I had almost no time to really plan this shot out…I knew I wanted to try and get all three of the famous peaks of the Pacific Northwest in one frame while at about 35,000 feet in the air.


I hope these tips convey my love for documentary style photography and do not scare you away from it. This style of photography has its own charm. Even though it may appear to be highly unplanned and random, it is also a good mix of carefully anticipated planning and authenticity. Give it a try the next time you travel and let me know how it goes.

The post Tips for Taking Documentary Style Travel Photos by Karthika Gupta appeared first on Digital Photography School.