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Photography tutorials and how-to articles

Articles aimed at helping you improve aspects of your photography

Site update: Thanks for everyone's support - work is still very sparse, but at least I've lots of videos, articles and reviews to write - if you've any suggestions or questions, please just let me know - Keith & Karen
...Get our Newsletter for new articles/reviews and why not visit Keith's YouTube Channel
...My book about how to use tilt/shift lenses is now available.

There are a growing number of entirely free tutorials and ‘how to’ articles on this site. This page provides links to all of them.

They range from photo composition to ‘photo-hacks’ or building your own specialist lenses from discarded camera equipment.

Many of our articles and reviews are also written to help explain how and why you would use different equipment and techniques, not just a list of a product’s functionality.

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If you think of something that might be useful, please let Keith know – many articles have come from questions asked by readers.

The sections below split all the articles into three broad categories.

Editing your photos. Tools and tips

  • Making a giant print from an 11MP imageMaking a giant print from an 11MP imageProducing a very large 3m x 2m print from an 11 megapixel camera image. Looks at the whole workflow, and how different types sharpening at different stages is vital
  • Replacing Canon large format printheads – iPF8300 / PF05Replacing Canon large format printheads - iPF8300 / PF05Replacing a Canon large format printhead on the 44" iPF8300 / PF05 printer after one fails. Canon large format print heads are a consumable part and fully user replaceable.
  • Photosniper 300mm with Canon 100DPhotosniper 300mm with Canon 100DUsing the Russian Tair 3 phs Photosniper 300mm f4.5 lens and rifle stock with a Canon EOS 100D/SL1 DSLR. Includes modification to use external trigger
  • Using a shift lens – why not just fix verticals in softwareUsing a shift lens - why not just fix verticals in softwareUsing a shift lens to correct image geometry, such as converging verticals, seems like a lot of expense. Why it's better than doing it in software
  • Using Silver Efex Pro for colour printsUsing Silver Efex Pro for colour printsUsing software to create monochrome images that are blended with colour images using luminosity blending to give more punch to dull photos
  • Why you must sharpen imagesWhy you must sharpen imagesAn awful lot of uninformed comment about the need for and desirability of image sharpening clutters up forums. Myths and misunderstanding spread far and wide, and the temptation to ignore image sharpening, because it's contentious, is easy to understand.
  • On site product product photography setupOn site product product photography setupBasic colour management and photography options for photographing large numbers of products out of the studio. Efficient setup reduces the processing needed
  • Reducing halos with Silver Efex Pro 2Reducing halos with Silver Efex Pro 2Ways of using colour to black and white conversion software such as Nik Silver Efex Pro that do not produce unwanted halo effects around objects. Ensuring that trees don't make the sky lighter for example

There are over 1100 free articles and reviews on the site - thanks to everyone who helps support it.
We appreciate any purchases you make through our partners such as B&H which help us sustain the site.

Using equipment in non-standard ways. Hacks and mods.

  • Looking at AF and manual focus for the 7DLooking at AF and manual focus functionality for the Canon EOS 7D. Some initial testing with moving objects and old lenses
  • Controlling a 1Ds3 via a WFT-E2 and iPhoneControlling a 1Ds3 via a WFT-E2 and iPhoneUsing the iPhone to connect to a Canon WFT-E2 wireless adapter attached to a Canon 1Ds Mk3. Remote control of the camera with a web browser over an ad hoc network.
  • Deactivate the ink level counter on the Epson 7600 and 9600Deactivate the ink level counter on the Epson 7600 and 9600How to make cartridges always read full by deactivating the ink level counter on the SP7600 and SP9600 Epson large format printers. To be used with care, but useful if you wanted to re-fill your ink carts
  • Using 645 MF lenses as shift lensesUsing 645 MF lenses as shift lensesUsing Mamiya 645 medium format lenses with a shift adapter with Sekor 35/55/80/210mm lenses. MF lenses work well too with a simple adapter, but have enough image circle to be shifted on any smaller sensor camera full frame or crop. Tested on a Canon 1Ds3 full frame 35mm DSLR.
  • Black ink swap on the Epson 7880 and 9880Black ink swap on the Epson 7880 and 9880An unofficial method for swapping photo black and matte black inks on the Epson SP7880 and SP9880 printers, reducing ink waste. Use with care
  • Olympus Zuiko 24mm f2-8 on Canon DSLROlympus Zuiko 24mm f2-8 on Canon DSLRTesting the Olympus Zuiko 24mm f2.8 lens mounted on a Canon 1Ds mk3 full frame DSLR with an adapter. Quick comparison with EF24-70 2.8L
  • Zeiss Flektogon 20mm f2-8 lens reviewZeiss Flektogon 20mm f2-8 lens reviewTests and review of using a manual focus Zeiss Flektogon 20mm f/2.8 lens on a Canon 1Ds mk3 DSLR with an M42-EF mount adapter. Includes discussion of adjustments for correct infinity focus
  • Black ink swap on the Epson 7800 and 9800Black ink swap on the Epson 7800 and 9800An unofficial method for swapping photo black and matte black inks on the Epson 7800/9800 printers, reducing ink waste.

Ideas for developing photographic skills and aspects of photographic composition.

  • Book Review: Isle of Skye – Photographer’s guideBook Review: Isle of Skye - Photographer's guideBook Review: Isle of Skye and NW Scotland - Photographer's guide by David Hickey. Locations, maps and tours with detailed photographic tips and suggestions covering equipment, photography and image processing.
  • Looking at the Canon R5 cameraLooking at the Canon R5 cameraKeith Cooper looks at the Canon EOS R5 45MP mirrorless camera, from the POV of an architectural photographer, including extensive use of tilt shift lenses
  • Diagonal lens shiftDiagonal lens shiftDiagonal lens shift - Keith looks at using a tilt/shift or shift only lens by combining horizontal and vertical lens movements. Using an off-set viewpoint in images
  • What goes into a printWhat goes into a printWhat goes into a photo print - getting more from your prints. Looking at printers, image preparation and just what makes a print worth going on your wall. Why are you making prints and who are they for?
  • Tilt-shift and moving beyond the small world lookTilt-shift and moving beyond the small world lookThe model world style of photos taken with lens tilt is but a small part of what can be achieved with a tilt-shift lens. Controlling and using lens tilt is not the black art some seem to think...
  • Helicon Focus focus stacking part 3Helicon Focus focus stacking part 3Review: Helicon Focus for focus stacking part 3. Making highly detailed macro photographs of very small objects, using a stackshot macro rail and MP-E65mm macro lens. Camera options for mirrorless
  • Helicon Focus focus stacking part 2Helicon Focus focus stacking part 2Review: Helicon Focus for focus stacking part 2. Moving the camera to create source images for a stack. Creating depth of field.
  • Helicon Focus for basic focus stackingHelicon Focus for basic focus stackingReview: using Helicon Focus for basic focus stacking of images for increased depth of field for macro and close up photography - Photos taken by stepping lens focus

Training – for companies

These are aspects of training that I provide (on location, not at our offices) as part of Northlight’s business.

We also have a training directory that is freely available for any professional photographer who offers training.

It’s arranged by location, so as long as you are a pro photographer, a free link is available

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Other areas of our site that may be of interest...

All the latest articles/reviews and photo news items appear on Keith's Photo blog 

We've a whole section of the site devoted to  Digital Black and White photography and printing. It covers all of Keith's specialist articles and reviews.
For All about using tilt and shift - articles/reviews about tilt/shift lenses

Other sections include Colour management and Keith's camera hacks - there are over 1100 articles/reviews here...

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See all of Keith's 1000+ articles and reviews

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Site update: Thanks for everyone's support - work is still very sparse, but at least I've lots of videos, articles and reviews to write - if you've any suggestions or questions, please just let me know - Keith & Karen
...Get our Newsletter for new articles/reviews and why not visit Keith's YouTube Channel
...My book about how to use tilt/shift lenses is now available.