All posts by el-el

exposure triangle

Triangle of Exposure

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Exposure is fundamental to making photographs. Understanding the concept of exposure triangle will make you a better photographer. This simple concept has been talked about a lot of times but rarely do you find a photographer, experimenting and analyzing results based on this triangle.

There are three main elements that exists on any DSLR camera, Aperture, Shutter, and ISO. Understanding how these work and using them together will allow you to be more creative that using the standard “auto” setting on your camera.

shutter speed principle

The Aperture controls the size of the opening in your lens and is denoted as f/2.8, f/4 and so on. The higher the number, the smaller the opening and thus less light is let in.


Each full stop of the aperture either doubles or halves the size of the lens opening (depending which direction you’re adjusting). In order to get the same exposure, the shutter needs to adjust for the lens opening. The table below illustrates the aperture and shutter combinations to achieve the same exposure. Think of it this way, if you double the size of the opening (each f/stop to the left on the table), the shutter speed has to double as well.

Aperture f/2.8  f/4   f/5.6   f/8   f/11   f/16   f/22   f/32
Shutter  1/250  1/125   1/60   1/30   1/15   1/8   1/4   1/8


Remember, the smaller f-number represents a wider opening in the lens and thus more light is let in. The way to counteract it is to increase the shutter speed or increase the ISO. Each element is codependent on the other.



Master your DSLR Camera – Great beginners class in Old Town

By | Half-Day Photo Safaris | No Comments

Master your DSLR Crash Course for Beginners

Dates available :  April 8 – June 8, 2017
All classes by reservations only. Reserve for yourself or for a group. Go from zero knowledge in digital photography to beginner basics in a few hours. Master your new Nikon or Canon DSLR complicated functions & learn from a working professional photographer
Meeting Place: Old Town. Meet at Living Room Cade Time: 1- 6pm
Cost per student – $ 175 – Limited to 4 students max.
Reserved your space by paying with Paypal. Email us on this link:


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Creative Camera Composition Workshop – Sunset Cliffs

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This is a fun and creative photography workshop for everybody. This is a  5 hour class from  230 – 730 pm.  Driving and walking

Dates : April 5 – June 5, 2017 . All workshops by appointment.
Workshop Fee : $ 175.00 per person, $ 250 for 2 people, $ 350 for 3 people

Orientation : Meet at Ocean Beach

We will be shooting around Ocean Beach and Sunset Cliffs
Subject Matter : Architecture, Still Life, Urban Scenes

Learn how to use the composition tool to shoot rule of thirds
Learn cool composition techniques with focal lengths and camera angles.
How to shoot cool filter effects with your Iphone 6
All creative techniques can be used with a Smart Phone like Iphone 6 or Android Phones

Using silhouettes and rule of thirds

Shooting Locations : Sunset Cliffs/ Ocean Beach –
Subject Matter : People, Beach Scenes, Actions
Learn how to shoot fast action and capture motion with your DSLR.
You can capture also fast action with Iphone 6

shot with an iphone 4s

Composition Exercise- Shooting vertical & horizontals subject matter
such as surfers using wide angle, Iphone has zom feature.
6:00 Pm – Snack break at Ocean Beach..Review & critique pics
Sunset Time – 730 Pm at Sunset Cliffs…

Time : 8:830 pm – Hopefully there will be enough time…
Night photoshoot of San Diego Trolley at Sta Fe Depot. Tripod required

840pm – Drop off Elle at Sta Fe Amtrak Station
900pm – Surfliner 595 leaves for LA



Check out these cool links

Composition Exercises


San Diego Gaslamp Photo Night Photography Workshop

By | Half-Day Photo Safaris | No Comments

Workshop Dates in San Diego : April 4 -28, 2017 – Schedule: 5-10 pm
Workshop Fee : $ 175 per person. $ 200 for 2 people, $ 300 for 3 people
Please reserved by Paypal before attending.
Meeting Place : Caffe Italia, 1704 India St.
What to bring : Any DSLR with short zoom lens, a 50mm 18 or prime lens, and a tripod.


Theme of the class: Shooting a travel assignment for an Asian travel magazine. We will shoot pics to depict the lifestyle and nightlife in San Diego.

Creative focus on this night class – Composition techniques such as rule of thirds, leading lines,
and frame within a frame is what I would like to see use in everyone of your images. Also shooting high, low,and eye level camera angles. shooting very wide and long focal lengths. We will start shooting around sunset.

For the night shooting we will be shooting handheld techniques using high ISO ( 1600 and up )
and fast lenses ( 2.8 min aperture ) and also tripod method using ISO 100 and apertures of F11-16
and long exposures ( 30 secs and longer ).

rules of 3rds focus attention

Rule of Thirds

By | Photo Tips | No Comments

The theory is that if you place points of interest in the intersections or along the lines that your photo becomes more balanced and will enable a viewer of the image to interact with it more naturally.

The rule of thirds is applied by aligning a subject with the guide lines and their intersection points, placing the horizon on the top or bottom line, or allowing linear features in the image to flow from section to section.

Studies have shown that when viewing images that people’s eyes usually go to one of the intersection points most naturally rather than the center of the shot – using the rule of thirds works with this natural way of viewing an image rather than working against it.

Using the Rule of Thirds comes naturally to some photographers but for many of us takes a little time and practice for it to become second nature.
East River Manhattan

In learning how to use the rule of thirds (and then to break it) the most important questions to be asking of yourself are:

What are the points of interest in this shot?
Where am I intentionally placing them?

Rule of thirds can also apply when you are editing images in Photoshop.rule of thirds

borthday gifts cloud 9

Birthday Gift Certificates of Photography for your colleague, a loved one or a friend.

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Birthday Day Gift Certificates Available Now.

Half-day photo safari certificates are now available FOR SALE. These beginner DSLR workshops are 4 hours long and can be taken in the afternoon or in the evening  ( night photo class ).They’re also available for Photoshop for Beginners  or Lightroom Basics workshops as well.

Here are a few ideas for a photography class to give to your loved one.

4-Hour Basic Digital Camera Basics for Beginners
4-Hour Photoshop/Lightroom Workshop for Beginners
4-Hour Night Photography Photo Tour of San Diego
4-Hour Iphone/Android Photo Tour in Balboa Park


Cost of gift certificates are only $ 175. Valid for 90 day use. Buy now.
Valerie La Jolla Cove Pelicans