Welcome to the 365 Project with Picaboo! A new year, a new project. Project 365 is where we challenge you to pick your camera up at least once a day and capture the world around you.

Let’s review how it works:

First, make sure you RSVP. When you RSVP, we’ll be able to message you about prizes, special announcements, and discounts on Picaboo products.

Next, start shooting! Don’t worry if you think you will run out of ideas. I’ll be here every week giving you some tips and tricks on how to take a picture every day.

Then, share your pictures on Picaboo’s facebook page.

Don’t worry if you miss a day or two. After all, there are 366 days this year, not 365! And in case you get stumped, we’ll give you a new theme each week to concentrate on.


Week 1: Theme: Goodbye Holiday

Week 1: Just Keep Shooting

Your mission this week is to just keep shooting. Shoot anything and everything.

Sounds simple, right? I know there are times when you can’t possibly have your camera in your hand 24/7 but when you do have it, use it. Take a ton of pictures. You never know what is right in front of your face if you don’t get out there and explore.

Use this week to get used to having your camera in hand often. If you have a brand spankin’ new camera, play around and get to know it. Had it for awhile? Try a new setting.

Here’s a quick and easy trick to try while you are playing around this week. Before you pack your Christmas tree up, try this simple bokeh technique with your tree lights.

Holiday Bokeh Picaboo photography tips

1. Switch your lens from Auto/Manual Focus{A/M} to Manual Focus {M}. There is a switch on the side of your lens that will look like this:

how to switch camera lens from auto/manual focus to manual focus
2. Next, put that bad boy into Manual Mode {M}. Don’t be afraid if you’ve never used it before. This will be painless.
how to put camera lens into manual mode
3. Now you want to set your Apeture to the widest setting on your lens. This is the f/stop. The widest setting will be the lowest number.  If you aren’t sure what that is, look on the side of your lens and look for this:
how to find your lens aperture

For example, the lens above goes up {down} to an f/ stop of 1.8 {PS this is my baby, a Nikon 35mm f/1.8. Love this lens!}.

Not sure how to set your Apeture? Don’t worry. It’s easy peasy. Press and hold down the exposure compensation button {see below picture} while turning the rotating dial.

how to set the compensation on your digital slr


4. Next, you are going to set your exposure. You want to underexposure this picture so that you have nice dark background. Look through the viewfinder and press the shutter half way to focus on your object. Remember you are in Manual Focus {M} so you won’t really be focused on anything {which is exactly what you want}. You will see the light meter on the bottom of your view finder.

To set your exposure, turn the dial until the exposure line is a little to the left of the 0. This will underexpose your picture.

5. Now you are ready to take your picture. Compose your picture through the viewfinder {typically you would put the tree or any other light source in the middle}. The picture should be unfocused at this point. Twist the lens to get the most bokeh. You want this picture as out of focus as possible.

6. Snap away!

You should have something similar as posted above! You can play around with the settings until you get your desired look!