Welcome back to the 365 Project with Picaboo!

As you may have noticed, Facebook has changed their layout once again. However, not much has changed when it comes to sharing your photos or posting comments on our wall. When you come to our Facebook a page, you’ll see the following image:

Follow these directions to post on our Facebook wall. This allows you to easily comment or share photos.

To view photos from the other participants of The 365 Project, look to the left sidebar and you’ll see the option to “See All” under “Recent Posts by Others on Picaboo.”

To view or comment on other pictures posted by 365 photography participants, click on "See All." This field can be found on the left sidebar of our Facebook home page.

And that’s it! Pretty easy, right? In case you missed a photography tutorial, we’ve included them all in this post.

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Week 14 Challenge & Theme:  Reading Histograms

We’ve had fun the past three weeks exploring composition. This week, we are going to get technical.

Reading Histograms. 

What are they? What do they tell you? And why are they so important?

A histogram is a visual representation of light and dark in your photograph. It can be viewed in the camera or in a picture processing software. A histogram will tell you a lot about a picture. Sometimes our tiny LCD display can misleading. You may think the picture looks ok, but then you get home and bring it up on the computer and it’s not. By reading your histogram while you are shooting, you will know if your picture is properly exposed.

Simply, a histogram shows you if your lights and darks are balanced. You might not always be wanting to take a picture that results in a perfect histogram. However, when you know how to read them properly, you will know what you are looking for. When reading your histogram, the dark is on the left with the light on the right.

Let’s look at some examples. Below are screen shots from one of my most recent sessions. The histogram is in the upper right-hand corner.

It’s not perfect, but when I was shooting, I wanted to make sure I didn’t “blow out” the whites” {we’ll talk about that in a minute}.

In this picture, I manually adjusted the picture so that my histogram was all the way over to the right. This made it way underexposed.

Next, I manually adjusted so that the picture was completely overexposed. The whites are completely blown out!

Why should we care about histograms?

I look at histograms a lot, especially if it’s particularly bright out or my clients are wearing light clothes. It is very easy to blow your whites when outside in an unshaded area. These are the times you would want to underexpose and lighten it up later in post-processing.

So where do you find the histogram on your camera?

On most cameras, all you have to do is bring up the picture you took in play back mode and push the up or down arrow until it pops up. If you aren’t sure how to bring up your histogram, consult your camera’s manual.

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Ready for your challenge?  It’s time to practice. Take a picture in Auto, write down your settings, and look at your histogram. Next, take a picture in your preferred shooting mode {Aperture, Shutter Speed, Manual}. Start of by using the settings you wrote down. Look at the histogram. Now, change your settings so that you overexpose the image. Look at your histogram. Then, you guessed it, change your settings so you underexpose the image. Finally, take a picture based on what you think the settings should be. Throw all your images into a Picaboo book so you can compare them side by side and then share the results on our Facebook wall!