Mollie Isaacs is a popular speaker who strives to educate and to inspire. Her programs are infused with a gentle sense of humor, have a wealth of educational and practical information, and are illustrated with diverse and creative images. She has presented her innovative seminars to photographic organizations and conferences throughout the country. If you are interested in having her come and speak to your organization, please contact her at email@example.com
Tips Sheet – NANPA “From Ordinary To Extraordinary” Webinar
“It’s not what you look at that matters, it’s what you see.”
— Henry David Thoreau
How do you elevate your work to a higher level? How do you take your photography from blah to boffo? It is not as difficult as you might think. All it takes is a willingness to embark on a new journey of open-mindedness, and no hesitation to break some rules.
In just 5 easy steps you can begin to greatly improve your images:
— Learn to see the light
— Learn about your camera gear
— Learn optimization software
— Learn about yourself
— Learn how to set yourself free
LEARN TO SEE THE LIGHT – As photographers, we live and die by the light. Good lighting can instantly improve a shot. So it is important to study light, both its quality and its direction.
Quality Of Light: can be soft and moody, or dramatic and powerful; can be hard sunlight or the soft, even light of shade.
Direction Of Light: light can come from the front, the back, or the side. Study the light direction when exploring photographic subjects.
LEARN ABOUT YOUR GEAR – it is crucial to master the controls on your camera and lenses.
Master Your Camera: understand and use the histogram to determine if your exposures are accurate; learn how to use shutter speeds (fast or slow) as a creative tool to either show motion or freeze motion (for birds in flight, especially if you are hand-holding, use a minimum shutter speed of 1/1250 sec. to freeze the motion); use Auto White Balance; learn how to control Depth of Field (for an artistic look or to blur the background, use shallow Depth of Field with a lens aperture of around f/2.8 or f/4; to achieve sharpness throughout the image from front to back, use a lens aperture of around f/16, f/22, or f/32 to create deep Depth of Field); learn how and why to use Continuous Focus and Rapid Burst for wildlife and birds (when using Rapid Burst, take just 3 or 4 shots in a burst, then wait a second or two and take another 3 or 4 shots); learn how to set your camera to Back Button focus combined with just one focus square active in your viewfinder to improve autofocus accuracy (the easiest way to get information on back button focus is by doing a Google search – search “back button focus [your camera body brand and model]”; camera owners manuals are notorious for not giving understandable or complete information on these subjects).
Master Your Lenses: experiment to see how wide angle lenses expand the distance between foreground and background, and how telephoto lenses compress the distance between foreground and background. Then choose the right lens for the job.
LEARN OPTIMIZATION SOFTWARE: Every image needs some amount of optimization. But you do not have to spend half your life sitting at the computer, optimizing your images. I use Lightroom, and find it easy to learn and to use. You can learn to do extensive optimization quickly and easily on most images. If you do not have Lightroom, Photoshop Camera RAW does almost as well.
LEARN ABOUT YOURSELF: Photograph subjects you enjoy; shoot in situations that make you feel comfortable; take some time to consider what your photographic hopes and dreams are; think about what moves you, and what makes you happy; take some time to get to know yourself better.
LEARN HOW TO SET YOURSELF FREE: be spontaneous; don’t be swayed by the opinions of others; don’t be crushed by a judge’s comments; simplify – less is more; pursue everything that interests you; travel far and wide to expand your horizons; always be alert and ready; shoot a LOT of images; let go and try some techniques or approaches that you have never tried before.
So get out there, fly high, and aim for the stars!
FREE NEWSLETTER – Subscribe to my FREE educational newsletter simply by sending me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org, and put “YES” in the subject line.
EDUCATIONAL BLOG – View the informative Blog, updated several times a week. It has many images with educational information on how the shots were created or optimized. It is a quick and easy way to improve your photographic education. Here’s the link http://awakethelight.blogspot.com/
Several hundred Blog posts are available for you to read. Scroll down the right-hand column on the Blog page and see a list of Blog entries. Each one is informative and instructional. I suggest reading each one, bit by bit, as you have time.
In the Webinar, you saw an image of a lighthouse with rays of light at the top. As I mentioned, those light rays were added in Photoshop. Details on how the image was created are on my Blog here (you might have to scroll down to see this particular Blog post) http://awakethelight.blogspot.com/
If you love to travel and would like to do a full-immersion educational, fun, and exciting photo tour or workshop, check out offerings on my website www.awakethelight.com Many of the 2018 trips are already sold out, but new things are being added so check back often. And you can request to be placed on the Waiting List. One of the most popular trips is toDENALI NATIONAL PARK, and there are still a few spaces left on the upcoming trip August 25 – 31, 2018. Details here http://awakethelight.com/denali-national-park/
Tips Sheet – NANPA Mighty Macro Webinar
“The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes,
but in having new eyes.” –Marcel Proust
The webinar covered 6 areas: Tools, Tech, Props, Lighting, Techniques, and Art
TOOLS – camera body, macro lens or extension tubes or close-up filters, occasionally a tripod.
TECH – shoot RAW, use Auto White Balance, set camera on Aperture Priority, do NOT use Auto ISO, always use a lens hood, use ISO 400 as a starting point, use a shutter speed of 1/125 sec. or higher when hand holding your camera.
PROPS – find great subjects (glassware, plastic serving bowls, small vases, etc.) for Macro at Dollar stores, along with colored papers.
LIGHTING – use window light, or natural light outdoors, or artificial light. Avoid strobes and flash since they do not allow you to see exactly what that light will do (quality or direction). Learn to “see” the quality of the light (soft or hard) and its direction (front, side, back). My favorite artificial light is the Promaster LED 120 SS Super Slim Rechargeable, available at Hunt’s Photo and Video. Call the store at (781) 462-2383 and ask for Alan Samiljan and tell him Mollie from Awake The Light sent you – that will get you excellent service and very fast delivery. Or email Alan at email@example.com
TECHNIQUES – for an artistic look, use shallow Depth of Field at around f/2.8 or f/4. For sharp images when hand holding your camera, turn your body into a tripod – balance the weight of your camera and lens in your left hand, use your right hand to steady the right side of the camera, squeeze your arms tightly against your sides, and place your feet about shoulder width apart.
ART – learn about composition, use leading lines, use shallow Depth of Field to blur distracting backgrounds, look for line and shape in your subjects, use repetition of color and / or shape, learn about color contrast and color harmony, don’t be afraid to crop your images, and ALWAYS use image optimization software to enhance your images – I use Lightroom since it is the easiest and the best for most optimization needs.
Now you are on your way to New Road. It is a road on which you will listen to yourself and not to others, you will listen to your heart, you will learn new things about yourself and your talents, you won’t let your equipment hold you back, and you won’t let your head hold you back.
If you prefer a more adventurous trip, join me in Denali National Park for the most incredible Alaska experience you can imagine. This autumn trip, September 2 – 8, puts us there when the tundra is ablaze with fall colors, and the wildlife is at its best. We’ll see grizzly bear, caribou, dall sheep, and the beautiful snow-capped Alaska Range with the famous Denali (formerly Mt. McKinley), the highest peak in North America. All this, plus our lodge puts us in the lap of luxury while in the wilds of Alaska. Details here http://awakethelight.com/denali-national-park/
FREE NEWSLETTER – Subscribe to the FREE educational newsletter simply by sending me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org, and put “YES” in the subject line.
“Art is not what you see, but what you make others see.” –Edgar Degas
Below are a variety of 1-hour to 2-hour programs that I can present to your organization.
I can also create a custom program to fit your time frame.
FROM ORDINARY TO EXTRAORDINARYThis acclaimed program is packed with information and inspiration designed to help energize your creativity AND improve the look of your images. Learn how to elevate your images from blah to boffo. Mollie will teach you simple yet powerful techniques that will add punch and excitement to your images. You will see Before and After examples of images that went from dull and lifeless to exciting and compelling. Learn how to shoot from your heart, not just your head.
TURBOCHARGED MACROMake your macro photography more artistic and more fun. This program will show you ways to create beautiful macro images with virtually none of the work or struggle that might have frustrated you in the past. You will get technical and lighting tips, see creative techniques, and learn artistic approaches that will make your macro soar. And none of it requires expensive hardware or software.
ABSTRACTS WITH IMPACTAbstract photography allows us complete creative freedom. There are no rigid rules and no restrictions. This program will start you on a journey of new discoveries about artistic photography AND yourself. See Before and After images of a scene and then the abstracts found within that scene. Learn how to find abstracts everywhere in nature, and how to create them easily at home as well.
LIGHTROOM UNLEASHEDEvery image needs optimization, but that does not mean you have to be chained to your computer for hours at a time. Learn simple techniques on how to use Lightroom easily and quickly to greatly improve your images. If you have tried Lightroom and found it difficult, confusing, or time-consuming, this program will show you a much easier and faster way to optimize your images. Come away with less fear, more confidence, and better images. [Mollie also offers popular two-day hands-on Lightroom classes for small groups. Contact her for details.]
REDISCOVER YOUR CREATIVITYWe are all born with a sense of wonder and a creative mind. But for many of us, as we mature, those attributes get buried under the responsibilities of adulthood, careers, and family obligations. This program will help you find the wonder and creativity again. This inspirational and informative program will give you specific ways to tap into your creative self. It provides both technical tips and creative approaches that will put the spark back in your photographic work.
MAKE YOUR BIRD PHOTOGRAPHY SOARPhotographing birds can be a difficult skill to master. But this program will simplify the process and unravel some of the mysteries of how to get those great bird images. This program covers all the details on camera settings, lens options, tripod needs, a variety of techniques, and some tips on how to get artsy as well.
UNCHAINED – NATURE & WILDLIFE PHOTOGRAPHY FOR THE TIMID AND THE BRAVEMost photographers love nature and wildlife, but might not have all the skills needed to create the images they seek. This program is filled with information to help you elevate your photography to a higher level. Learn the technical things you need to know like camera settings, lens and tripod options, plus helpful tips on how best to photograph wildlife, birds, and scenics. You’ll also get information on some of Mollie’s favorite shooting locations. And get some creative ideas to separate your images from the rest of the pack.
FULL DAY & MULTI-DAY WORKSHOPS
Mollie offers a variety of day-long and multi-day workshops. Most workshops are a blend of instruction, practical hands-on training for participants, photographic illustrations, and a bit of fun, too. Mollie is a seasoned educator who shares a passion for teaching AND photography.
The main workshop topics are listed below. However, Mollie can customize any workshop, or create a new workshop, to best meet the needs of your club members or group. To schedule a workshop in your area, please contact her at email@example.com
LIGHTROOM UNLEASHED Workshop
Learning how to use Lightroom might appear to be a difficult, complicated, or time-consuming effort. In fact, with the right instruction, it is simple and easy to learn. Regardless of whether you have used Lightroom for years, or are relatively new to it, this workshop will teach you the best, easiest, and fastest ways to optimize your images. This acclaimed hands-on workshop can be customized as a 1-day, a 2-day, or a 3-day workshop. The goal is to teach you easy to use, efficient and effective ways of working with Lightroom. It will help streamline your methods of working, resulting in much less time on the computer with much better results. Even if you have tried other Lightroom classes or online tutorials in the past, and came away confused or frustrated, don’t give up. This workshop will clear away the confusion and pave the way for you to create much better looking images with much less work. Mollie will show you her special techniques developed over years of using Lightroom. These are faster, easier, and more intuitive than other methods you might have tried. Email her at firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss setting up a class in your area (minimum class size 6, maximum 15).
TURBOCHARGED MACRO Workshop
This day-long workshop combines instruction first, followed by hands-on photography of macro subjects. A variety of subjects will be provided so that each participant has a choice of interesting items to photograph. The instruction portion will cover technical and creative details showing participants how to begin creating unique and pleasing macro images. This workshop will help make your macro photography more artistic and more fun. Mollie will teach you easy techniques that result in beautiful artistic images. You will virtually eliminate the hard work or struggle that might have frustrated you in the past. You will get technical and lighting tips, see creative techniques, and learn artistic approaches that will make your macro soar. And none of it requires expensive hardware or software.
418 W. Palmetto St. - Kill Devil Hills - NC - 27948757-773-0194