photography: take 1

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photo 1
I really enjoyed Plum and June's blog hop this summer, and guess what? Now she's hosting a little Quilt Photography workshop. I always love and appreciate good photography, especially in a media like craft blogging where lots of the potential readers are visual in nature.

{Before I go on, I have to say a HUGE big thank you to Maureen Cracknell for sending me this cute bundle of Luxe in Bloom and featuring my QAYG quilt!}

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I photograph with a Canon PowerShot SD 4000 IS digital camera. It's a handy little point and shoot that takes a decent quality photo. I like that it has a variety of settings, both in full manual and also semi manual mode. I shot all of these photos in the auto mode, which defaults to the macro setting at close range. I do shoot in the semi manual (Program) mode frequently as well. I'm a little intimidated by the manual settings and it being a point and shoot, they are sometimes cumbersome to change and play with, but before I dive into buying a very expensive (and bulky) DSLR camera, I'd like to play more with the manual mode on the camera I do have.

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This photo session was taken in my sewing room with natural lighting. It doesn't get the best lighting during the day, but it's easy to access props and a (sometimes) clean white surface for photographs. I normally don't bother too much with props when photographing, but I really did like how the photos with props had that little something extra.

All photos were post-edited in Photoshop. I used a define/sharpen action as well a lightening action to get the color and crispness I was pleased with. I then re-sized all the photos to 600 in width using a separate action. If you find that you do a lot of the same things to your photos over and over again, it's helpful to create an action so that with one click, the entire process can be applied quickly and easily. You can also find and download plenty of free actions online.

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Before hitting "Post" on any new entry, I do upload all the photograph contenders to the post and "Preview". Sometimes, although I love a photo during the editing process after I see it within the post it just doesn't translate the way I wanted, or clashes with another photo in the post. Then I can delete and rearrange which photos I like within the post prior to publishing. I usually delete the duds from the photo stream, but today, just for you, I left them up so you can peek at those that didn't make the cut. Out of the 59 photos taken, 21 were edited. 8 were included in this post.

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Several of these were taken with my go-to layout, the typical fabric stack. I tried to mix it up by incorporating different backgrounds - some with the sewing machine and others with a solid white background (comic book boards since my dog chewed the poster board I had been using for this purpose). I tried mixing up the stack by making it a little imperfect, which is how stacks usually are around here. I took a few shots with the stack all lined up, but I preferred the messier look - I thought it added some life to the photos.

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Then I looked at some other ways to "pose" the fabric since I have wanted to try to get away from my typical fabric stack shot. I still prefer the stack shots, but some of these have some merit.

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This last shot was a last ditch attempt to do something a little out of my comfort zone. Although the base fabric is in need of some pressing, I do think it came out well as far as showing off the fabrics and incorporating some props. I also really like that it seems like it's going to get used and worked with instead of just a pretty pile of fabrics.