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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.

  • Testing add-on tele and wide angle convertor lenses Testing add-on tele and wide angle convertor lensesTrying out a range of tele and wide angle converter attachments for the front of lenses. Converters increase or decrease the focal length of a lens. Quality differs widely, but the effects can be interesting
  • Canon 5D mk2 Infrared conversion Canon 5D mk2 Infrared conversionUsing an Infrared (IR) modified DSLR camera for digital infrared photography. Looking at exposure and lens choices, along with image processing options. Testing an IR modified Canon EOS 5D mk2 - it it just about luminous trees
  • Make your own macro lenses Make your own macro lensesUsing old lenses and equipment with modern digital cameras to make a high magnification macro lens. Reversing a lens and making a mount for it. Macro photography without the expense of buying a specialist macro lens
  • The wonders of bad lenses The wonders of bad lensesHome made DIY lenses are easy to make for your camera and a great way to see what really matters to you when photographing subjects. A simple lens made with cardboard
  • Looking at AF and manual focus for the 7D Looking 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 iPhone Controlling 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 9600 Deactivate 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 lenses Using 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.

Ideas for developing photographic skills and aspects of photographic composition.

  • The art of the big photographic landscape print The art of the big photographic landscape printWhat makes for a great looking large 'fine art' print? What differences do you need to consider when deciding to make larger prints (A2 and above). Larger prints are that work are far more than just more megapixels, sharper lenses and big printers.
  • Where is your photography going next year? Where is your photography going next year?New equipment may be fun, but it's making less and less of a difference to the quality of many people's photography. Some thoughts on how to go about improving what you do and just as importantly why you do it. Photography resolutions for next year
  • DxO ViewPoint 3 review DxO ViewPoint 3 reviewDxO ViewPoint software is updated to version 3. Software provides image geometry correction and effects for verticals and horizontals, as well as transformations for shots of groups of people shot with wide lenses
  • 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.
  • Photos for architect’s web sites Photos for architect's web sitesAs an architectural photographer, Keith discusses what photos are for on architect's web sites. Based on a recent interview with a design agency, looking at why many small-medium practices fail to make the best impressions with their work.
  • 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.
  • DIY Telecentric macro lenses DIY Telecentric macro lensesJoining various old lenses together with filter rings and cardboard makes a range of specialist lenses that normally cost thousands of pounds. Simple experiments with telecentric macro lenses.

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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