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Tips and Tricks: Getting the perfect shot!

 
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PostPosted: Fri May 06, 2016 6:14 am    Post subject: Tips and Tricks: Getting the perfect shot! Reply with quote

Post here any tips and tricks you know on how to get that perfect shot for the Stream! Whether making staged shots or simply taking pics during an everyday chat, find help here on how to get the kind of photo that everyone talks about!
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Last edited by CandyApple VIP Club Member on Fri May 06, 2016 6:16 am; edited 1 time in total
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PostPosted: Fri May 06, 2016 6:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Helpful Links:

The Stream - How to Get that Perfect Shot! (old thread)

Tips and Tricks

Tutorial by: Mommajack


Filters, Fillers, Lighting, and/or Backgrounds
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Last edited by CandyApple VIP Club Member on Fri May 06, 2016 6:38 am; edited 3 times in total
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PostPosted: Fri May 06, 2016 6:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Tips and Tricks:

1. It's OK to draw your inspiration from others, but *don't* copy!

2. The Camera. Don't be afraid to experiment. Try different angles, take shots from the back or a birds eye view. Zoom in or zoom out. So what if the shot is messed up the first time? Learn from the experience and try again. After all, you can delete the ones you don't like!
- Lowering the camera closer to the floor and aiming it up at your avatar can add more drama to your shot. It can also make your avatar look a little bigger.

3. Furniture and Poses. You can change the size of furniture to get different effects.
- Shrink down a tree and sink it partly below camera level (for staged shots) or the ground. When you take your pic it will look like a bush.
- Enlarge a chair to make your avatar look like a doll.
- Stacking furniture on top of each other can create different looks: make your dresser or book case look taller, or decorate with a 'Granny's attic storage' type feel.
- Changing the size of your pose spots can also create a 'little doll' look (or fairy, or giant, etc.). Enlarging your pose spot is also the way to get that great super close up shot for staged images.

4. Backgrounds and Fillers. Never underestimate the power of a 2D product! Very helpful in staged shots. See also #5. below.
- You can create more depth in a shot if your subjects are framed by an archway, tree branches, hanging vines, etc.

5. Frame your Subject. This is what draws your fans' eyes to the topic of your image. See also #4 above.
- If you are taking pics in a castle, try getting the edge of an open doorway in your shot. The viewer's eye will naturally be drawn to what is being framed by the architecture.
- You can use flowers, bushes, etc. in the foreground to do the same thing.

6. Ambient Lighting. Rooms and products with shadows or different casts of light can create all kinds of wonderful images.

7. If you see something you like, take a pic! Odds are, someone else will like it too Smile

8. Composition. Because where your subject is in the pic matters.
- Remember the rule of three. Pretend your camera frame is divided into three sections, from top to bottom and side to side (like a tic-tac-toe game). Place your subject a little away from the exact middle of the frame, and the result will be a different look than if you took one straight up the middle
- Avoid 'busy' or distracting backgrounds. If your camera is zoomed way out and there are lots of strobe lights going on, it may be difficult to see those fancy dance moves your friends are doing!
- Take note of your edges. If your avatar is placed in front of a background, make certain when you take your shot the edges of the background are not visible along the sides of your photograph.

9. What is the Mood of the Shot? What feelings do you want to evoke?
- If you want to take a creepy Halloween photograph, you may not really want those neon pink flowers in the foreground.
- Taking images of calm water, or partially hiding an avatar's face can invoke 'stillness' or 'quietness'. Experiment!

10. Color. Color can greatly effect the mood you convey.
- Different colors can convey different moods. Colors in the red area of the color spectrum are known as warm colors and include red, orange and yellow. These evoke emotions ranging from feelings of warmth and comfort to anger and hostility. Red is often associated with power or love and seeing it can literally make your heart beat faster. Colors on the blue side of the spectrum are known as cool colors and include blue, purple and green. These colors are often seen as calm or gentle, but can also bring to mind feelings of sadness.

- Colors can sometimes have more than one mood, depending on shade, tint, and subject matter. A dark purple outfit can convey royalty, but make it a pastel and you may think of Easter eggs or even babies. Black or gray can evoke doom and gloom, but black can also be used to convey power.

- There are 4 ways to utilize color to enhance your images:
-- Have a dominant color. Too many colors at once can be difficult to manage and end up quite confusing, creating an unappealing image. It's much easier to choose one dominant color and have more of it in the image than other colors.

-- Use color isolation. This is related to using a dominant color. If you saw a rose bush with only a few roses on it, which would look better: a picture of the whole bush, or zooming in on 1 or 2 flowers? Think of taking a picture of the color, instead of the subject. Isolate the color you want to take a picture of from the other colors around it.

-- Use of Advancing color. I made a list of warm colors above. Warm colors will stand out and draw the eye more than cool colors, so use them wisely. If an avatar is wearing a red dress and surrounded by white flowers, the eye will be drawn to the avatar. But if the avatar is in white and surrounded by red flowers, the viewer will be looking at the flowers.

-- Use of Receding color. The cool colors listed above act in the opposite way of warm colors. Cool colors are receding colors and can fade into the background, giving a boost to the other colors and making them stand out. A blue sky with green hills in the background will stay in the background if orange and yellow daisies are in the foreground - the daisies will be your subject matter and draw the eye.

Don't be afraid to experiment. Everything listed here is a general guideline and can be mixed, altered, or completely thrown out the window as you gain experience in what *you* can make work for *you!*
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PostPosted: Fri May 06, 2016 6:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Tutorial made by: Mommajack

Let's examine how I created this image:




Here are the items I used to create it. As you can see, it did not take very many. There is no limit to how many you can include, but you don't have to have a lot of products in your photograph to create a pleasing image. The two items that are marked through with the red 'X' were not actually used to make the photo. The yellow icon is a light effect, the black one is the room.




First, the camera angle. At the wrong angle items look misplaced, and sometimes bits of a particular product can disappear (see the shadow under the tree). The flock of birds in the air look like they are being swept along by the wind. The Avatar head is being overlapped by a bit of tree branch, ruining the effect of the tree being in the distance. And obviously being too far zoomed out shows the edges of the background, ruining the entire effect I wanted to create.




Top view. Behind the flat background you see a yellow circle. This is a light effect I included, to cast a yellow light to the entire image. It helps create the impression of a sunset, and I placed it at the same point behind the background that I wanted the light to come from (where I wanted the sun to be in the sky. I used the image on the background as a guide of where to place it). Where the light was placed affected where shadows and highlights were cast on the 3D products and the Avatar. The clouds you see there are the reverse side of the 'wind' product.




You can see that some items were 3D products, and others were fillers. Sometimes it doesn't matter if the items are a bit away from the background and Avatar, although if you want to take a close up then you need items as close as you can get. The tree, the white flowers, and the white and pink flowers are all 3D products. The birds (both the flock and the two in the foreground), the wind and leaves, and a grass product that is difficult to see from this angle are all 2D products.




I wanted to zoom in and show you what I did with the shadow here. I tilted the product to match the angle of the hill as close as I could, and then to create the impression that it is going over the top and onto the other side of the hill I put it part way through the background, right where the edge of the hilltop is. You can see that I also used a 'wind swept' style of hair, to further the impression of a windy day, and I shrunk the tree down from its original size to create the impression of distance.




Finished photograph, with everything in it's place and the camera at the proper angle (I raised the angle of the camera slightly). The white flowers in the lower left were dropped a little so you don't see their bottom edge. The flowers in front of the birds were shoved far enough past the right edge that you cannot see the white flowers that were also part of the product (I only wanted the pink to show). The rounded edge of the wind was also intentionally cut off. I intentionally placed the avatar so that it looked like she had a bit of shadow where she was standing. If I hadn't done this it would have looked like she was floating above the ground. Always be sure to 'ground' any items in your image by the use of shadows, unless you want them to appear to float or fly.




Experiment, challenge yourself, draw inspiration from others, but most of all be yourself and have fun!
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PostPosted: Fri May 06, 2016 6:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 04, 2017 11:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

How do you fit the avatar into the background so that it looks like she is in the bg...?
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