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Photography tutorials and how-to articles

Articles aimed at helping you improve aspects of your photography


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

  • A simple black and white print A simple black and white printA simple black and white print workflow aimed at showing just how easy it is to create a black and white landscape print, with a few simple edits.
  • Setting the tilt axis for tilt-shift lenses Setting the tilt axis for tilt-shift lensesSetting the tilt axis for tilt-shift lenses to an arbitrary angle other than vertical or horizontal, so as to match the desired plane of focus for subjects. ideal for product photography where simple untilted depth of field is not good enough.
  • How to use a shift lens on your camera How to use a shift lens on your cameraHow to use a shift lens on a camera, the results you get and why you should use one. Perspective control and changing your viewpoint with specialist lenses, Why doing it in camera beats software
  • Keith Cooper’s City Light Luminar presets Keith Cooper's City Light Luminar presetsKeith's 'City Light' presets for MacPhun's Luminar photo editing software. Developed for architectural images when converting from colour to B&W. Before and after examples, and how they differ from 'straight' B&W conversions. Also using them as a luminance adjustment for colour images.
  • Macro photography for a trade stand Macro photography for a trade standMacrophotography setup for producing photographs of small electronic components for the Electronica trade show. Photographs of components along with brightly coloured gummy bears on a polished metal surface.
  • Print of a photo of a sunset from my loft Print of a photo of a sunset from my loftPhotographing an interesting sunset out of the loft window at home. How a simple photo, basic processing and printing produces a 22 inch by 33 inch print. Why any problems in making great prints probably doesn't come from deficiencies in equipment and software.
  • Tutorial: A large black and white print of the harbour at Staithes Tutorial: A large black and white print of the harbour at StaithesLooking at the whole process, from photography to printing, Keith's tutorisl shows how he produced a 22" x 43" wide angle view of the harbour at Staithes in N. Yorkshire. Includes details on image stitching, B&W conversion and using masked adjustment layers.
  • Better scenic and landscape holiday photos Better scenic and landscape holiday photosKeith was recently asked for a few quick and -simple- tips for better scenic vacation photos by a local business group. A few basic ideas that have stood the test of time and help create better looking landscape photos.

There are around a thousand 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.

  • Canon 5Ds is fine with old lenses Canon 5Ds is fine with old lensesDespite worries that many more megapixels might mean old lenses needed replacing, some tests with a 5Ds show that it benefits all lenses. A rising tide floats all boats
  • Canon EW-73C lens hood from modifying an EW-73B Canon EW-73C lens hood from modifying an EW-73BLens hood for the EF-S 10-18mm F4.5-5.6 IS Modifying a cheap third party EW-73B lens hood to match a Canon EW-73C lens hood at a fraction of the price.
  • Zeiss MC S 135mm f3-5 on Canon 100D Zeiss MC S 135mm f3-5  on Canon 100DTesting an M42 screw fit Zeiss MC S 135mm f3.5 manual focus telephoto lens on a Canon 100D/SL1 crop sensor camera with an M42-EF adapter.
  • Photosniper 300mm with Canon 100D Photosniper 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
  • Cleaning Canon printheads – iPF8300 – PF05 Cleaning Canon printheads - iPF8300 - PF05Cleaning and replacing the printheads - on a Canon iPF8300 large format printer, with the PF-05 printhead. Canon large format print heads are a user replaceable part. Whilst cleaning might help, it could be that you need a new print head.
  • Using old lenses on a modern digital DSLR camera Using old lenses on a modern digital DSLR cameraLens adapters allow you to use old lenses on a modern digital DSLR camera. Many old lenses work very well if you can live without autofocus. Performance varies, but it's possible to learn lot of use for the rest of your photography
  • Macro on the Canon EOS 100D SL1 Macro on the Canon EOS 100D SL1Using the 18MP Canon EOS 100D (SL1) for macrophotography. Tested with extension tubes and a tilt/shift lens and the specialised MP-E65 Macro lens. Showing some benefits of a crop sensor camera with small pixels
  • Use a survey tripod for the GigaPan Epic Pro Use a survey tripod for the GigaPan Epic ProMaking use of a survey tripod and tribrach with thread size adapters to level and mount a GigaPan Epic Pro. Very solid and easy to set up and accurately level for GigaPan photos

Ideas for developing photographic skills and aspects of photographic composition.

  • Hand held tilt/shift? Hand held tilt/shift?Handheld photography with a tilt/shift lens - it's nowhere near as difficult as you might think. Using a shift lens does not always require a tripod
  • Review update – Topaz Impression V2 Review update - Topaz Impression V2V2 of Topaz impression adds new preset options and improved controls to the software for creating painting or drawing effects for your images. Adds masking and more flexible brush control.
  • MPB ND2-400 variable ND filter review MPB ND2-400 variable ND filter reviewReview of the MPB ND2-400 variable neutral density (ND) filter. 1 to 8 stops of additional exposure. 82mm version tested on a TS-E24mm shift lens. Examples show why you might use such a filter
  • MegaMast – a 28 foot camera tripod/mast review MegaMast - a 28 foot camera tripod/mast reviewCarbon fibre tripod takes up to 6lbs of camera gear up to heights of 28 feet (8.4 metres). Tested with CamRanger wifi based remote control unit for cameras. Full pan and tilt control with acces to camera settings and live view on iPad/Phone/computer
  • Why I use the Fisheye-Hemi plugin Why I use the Fisheye-Hemi pluginFisheye lenses are great, with their extreme wide angle and their distinctive perspective, but sometimes you want a bit more. The Fisheye hemi plugin provides some interesting variations
  • Is digital too easy? – that film thing (again) Is digital too easy? - that film thing (again)Has digital photography taken the 'real skills' out of photography? I'm very much inclined to say no, but it has made it more difficult for many people to know why they are taking photos and what they want to achieve.
  • Review of Kuuvik Capture V1.3 Review of Kuuvik Capture V1.3Review of Kuuvik Capture V1.3 camera tethering software. Apple Mac app that allows for direct control of Canon cameras, with many novel workflow features
  • Macro on the Canon EOS 100D SL1 Macro on the Canon EOS 100D SL1Using the 18MP Canon EOS 100D (SL1) for macrophotography. Tested with extension tubes and a tilt/shift lens and the specialised MP-E65 Macro lens. Showing some benefits of a crop sensor camera with small pixels

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.

Categories include Colour management and Keith's camera hacks - there are over 1000 articles/reviews here...

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