Aerial Photography Guide

The Complete Guide to Aerial Photography

The Complete Guide to Aerial Photography

In this guide, we break down the basics of aerial photography to help you understand the genre and to get you ready to start working in the field.

As the photography world continues to advance with increasing technological innovations, the genres within the world are evolving. Aerial photography is quickly adapting within the consumer level, as drones are becoming more accessible for the masses, which means the possibilities for aerial photography are limitless.

Breaking into the world of aerial photography may seem a bit daunting, especially for someone who is typically used to shooting on land with a handheld camera, but the genre is full of challenging potential for anyone interested enough to jump into it.

Our guide walks you through the basics of aerial photography, provides tips for starting out, and has a helpful list of recommended gear to help make equipment purchases easier.

Read on or use the links to below to “jump” to each section:

What is Aerial Photography?

Aerial Photography

Image via ISO500px

Simply put, aerial photography is photography taken from above by aircraft (like planes and helicopters) and other flying objects (like drones). Aerial photography is a broad genre that has undergone a lot of progress in recent years due to new technological advances, like the development of consumer-friendly drones, that have helped make the genre more accessible.

Aerial photography can be done for a variety of reasons including cartography, landscape planning, archeology, movie production, environmental studies, power line inspection, surveillance, marketing, and artistic projects. Since aerial photography can be used for many situations, it is a versatile way to turn your hobby into a business endeavor.

With so many opportunities to utilize aerial photography, understanding the basics of the genre can be a great way to begin making money off of your aerial work. With drones becoming easier for the consumer level, getting the right equipment and gaining experience is the best way to get started in aerial photography.

Aerial vs. Drone Photography: What’s the Difference?

Aerial VS Drone Photography

Image via Adorama

Drone technology has advanced quickly in recent years making it easier than ever for consumers and professionals to access this equipment. While aerial photography does not have to be done by drones, the use of these cameras has allowed for exciting developments within the genre.

The easiest way to understand the difference between drone photography and aerial photography is to view drone photography as a subgenre. With the increasing use of drones, drone photography and aerial photography are quickly becoming interchangeable, but it is important to know there is other equipment that can be used to achieve the same results.

Tyes of Aerial Photography

Aerial photography has many commercial uses, as well as artistic potential for personal projects. While aerial photography is a genre within itself, it does expand into other genres like landscape photography, nature photography, sports and action, and real estate photography. The possibilities for aerial photography are pretty abundant, so it is easy to find an area that aligns with your interests.

Landscape Photography

Landscape Phtography

Image via PictureCorrect

Taking pictures of landscapes in an aerial view can be used for many projects like land surveying, landscaping, and cartography. This subgenre is a great way to find gigs that may pay for your aerial work.

Landscape photography, especially with aerial photos, can also fall into nature photography, as this combination is a great way for adventure-seeking photographers to capture natural and exciting scenes like volcanos, oceans, mountains, and waterfalls.

Filmmaking and Videography

Filmmaking and Videography

Image via Expert Photography

A common use for aerial photography is in cinematography. Aerial footage can be used to set the scene for movies and short films, and many companies can use aerial footage in their marketing materials.

Real Estate Photography

Real Estate Photography

Image via DronesEtc

Another way to turn your aerial work into a side business is through real estate photography. Aerial pictures can play a critical role in capturing the full property of a listing, and it can be a great way to step up any real estate listing.

Sports and Action Photography

Sports and Action Photography

Image via Twenty20

Another genre reaping the benefits of drone usage is sports and action photography. With the use of drones, sports photographers can capture impressive pictures at all angles, especially of aerial sports like skiing and snowboarding. This can also be useful for photographers wanting to capture large scale events like NASCAR races and football games to showcase the entirety of an event.

How to Get Started in Aerial Photography

Like all types of photography, aerial photography requires an investment of time and resources to get started. First, do your research to see which types of aerial photography seem interesting and doable in your areas. By knowing which types of aerial shoots you will want to work on, you can start to narrow down which equipment will best fit your needs.

Once you’ve decided on the best gear for you (we’ll go more in-depth about different types of drones, or you can jump ahead to read more), you will want to practice with your equipment to get comfortable handling it.

How to Get Started

Image via Photography Tricks

Start by testing out your drone or gear in large open areas, like parks or open fields, to get a handle on how to operate and use your equipment. Practicing this way will let you test out the speed, angles, and drone handling, so you will feel comfortable doing a shoot.

Don’t forget to check out the rules and regulations for drone usage in the areas you plan to be shooting or practicing in. Since aerial photography has become even more popular with drone usage, many areas have begun to draft rules and regulations around their usage.

Starting with recreational use (photography by drones that you are not being paid or commissioned to do), the rules are pretty simple, but they get a bit more complicated for commercial use.

Check out the guidelines around registering your gear, and make sure to read local rules frequently to stay up-to-date on any possible changes to regulations.

Quick Tips to Follow:

  • Be sure you can always see your drone, and keep it within your line of sight.
  • Know the maximum permissible height for the area you are shooting in, and don’t go above it.
  • Avoid flying your drone in overcrowded areas. Public spaces, such as parks, are fine, but respect the space of others.
  • Just as you would with other types of photography, respect the privacy of others and do not take pictures of private property without permission.
  • Avoid airports and no-fly zones.

Tips for Getting the Best Aerial Shots

Aerial photography can produce stunning results with practice and attention to detail. Like all photography, at its core, aerial photography is an art form, and it requires an understanding of lighting, angles, and equipment to produce high-quality images.

Aerial Phtography Tips

Image via Hudson

Familiarize Yourself with Your Gear

Any gear you use for aerial shoots will have pros and cons, especially if you are used to still photography with a DSLR camera, so understanding how to properly handle your equipment will make a huge difference in your image results.

All drones have limitations, and understanding these limits, as well as finding the best ways to work around them, will help you step up your game. Be prepared to make adjustments to your technique, as working with drones is very different than working with a typical DSLR camera. Doing your research and practicing with your equipment will make a big difference.

Take Advantage of Auto Mode

You may be used to working in manual mode on your DSLR, but don’t be afraid to utilize the auto mode on your drone, especially when you are first starting out. Since drones are operated remotely, the live view on your device may not be an accurate depiction of what you are actually taking pictures of, so using your auto mode can help produce quality images while you are getting the hang of things.

Work With Height

Your equipment may be able to reach exceptional heights, but that may not be the best approach for every shoot. Try lower heights to switch up the angles and perspectives of your photos, and only go as high as possible when trying to cover the most area in your shots.

Plan Your Shoots

Almost all aerial photography is going to be done outside, so planning your shoots around the natural lighting of the day will help you capture the best images. Work with the sun and other weather conditions when shooting aerial images, and think ahead to plan what kind of weather will be best to capture your subject.

Composition Matters

Whether you are using a drone or doing in-person aerial shoots from a plane, the composition of your photos will make all the difference. Pay attention to the landscape and subjects you are trying to capture, and focus on finding the best composition to portray them. If you are planning on working with landscape shoots, study the area beforehand, so you can be knowledgeable when shooting.

Recommended Gear

While drone photography is the most consumer-friendly option for aerial shooting, there is equipment that works well with other forms of aerial photography like shoots done from planes and helicopters.

If you plan to conduct aerial shoots from a plane or helicopter, rather than working with a drone, the best lenses to take are a 24-70mm, ultrawide 16-35mm, and a telephoto lens. The telephoto lens will allow you to get close to the subject or landscape that you are shooting, while also capturing fine details.

Bringing along extra camera straps, and safe storage for any gear you are not using is a good idea, since shooting from a plane or helicopter can be a bit tricky. Dress properly for the height as well.

The Best Drones for Photography

The market for drone photography is constantly advancing, which means there are several great choices that can fit the needs of whatever type of aerial photography you wish to do. With so much versatility in the market, the most important factor when choosing which drone is best for you is picking one that fits your shooting needs.



This extremely adept drone is powerful, but portable, which makes it great for any action-loving photographer who wants to be able to easily carry their equipment during shoots. The DJI Mavic 2 Zoom has quiet propellers and powerful motors that can withstand high winds just as well as a heavier model.

With high maximum speed and optical zoom features, this drone is a great choice for any photographer who wants to spend a little bit more for a quality piece of portable equipment.

Power Vision Power EggX Wizard

Power Vision Power EggX Wizard

This drone is waterproof and it can land on water, which makes a great choice for photographers who plan on using their drones in tough weather conditions. The Power Vision Power Egg X Wizard can withstand rain and is perfect for outdoor environments, like the beach or waterfalls.

DJI Mavic Mini

DJI Mavic Mini

This is the perfect drone for beginners who are ready to get started in aerial photography, but don’t want to spend money on a pro-level drone. The DJI Mavic Mini is portable, easy to use, and has a 3-axis camera stabilization that creates smooth footage during usage. This drone is marketed towards vlogging culture as well due to its ‘Quickshots’ feature that using preprogramming to help get the perfect shot for social media.

Parrot Anafi FPV

Parrot Anafi FPV

Image via Dronesvilla

The Parrot Anafi FPV is great for travel photographers who don’t want to lug around heavy equipment. This drone is extremely portable, lightweight, and has a folding controller to make traveling with it even easier. On top of its convenient physical design, it delivers quality images at an affordable price.

Ryze Tello

Ryze Tello

This is the most affordable drone on the list, and it is a great piece of equipment to start with at such a low price point. Called a microdrone, the Ryze Tello is operated solely through a smartphone, and it allows for basic programming to help with customization.

Check out the Grid50 marketplace for gear that will work best for aerial photography!

Final Thoughts

Aerial photography is an exciting genre with an abundance of possibilities. Take advantage of the opportunities that consumer-level drones bring, and invest in equipment that will help bring your vision to life.

Start by practicing your aerial skills and finding your niche within the genre, and don’t be afraid to expand your skills into a professional setting, as aerial photography can provide lucrative opportunities in the real estate and landscape photography scenes.

Don’t forget to keep up with regulations and frequently check the drone rules in your area, as the world of consumer drones expand, so will the rules and regulations surrounding them!

Nikon D3500 vs D5600

Nikon D3500 vs. Nikon D5600

Nikon D3500 vs. Nikon D5600: The Complete Comparison

In this article, we break down the differences between the Nikon D3500 and the Nikon D5600, so you can decide which camera is the best fit for you.

The Nikon D3500 and Nikon D5600 are both entry-level DSLR cameras priced for photographers looking to get into the DSLR field at a low price point. When deciding on which camera would be best for your needs, it can be hard to discern which one has the best features, so we did the work for you!

Check out the key details and our in-depth comparison to see which of these beginner cameras would be the best fit.

Key Details at a Glance:

Here are the side-by-side specs of the Nikon D3500 and the Nikon D5600:

Nikon D3500 Nikon D5600
Price New: $396.95, Used: ~$300 (Body Only) New: $596.95, Used: ~$520 (Body Only)
Release Date 8/29/2018 11/10/2016
Viewfinder Optical Optical
Articulating LCD Screen No Yes
LCD Screen Size 3 3.2
Viewfinder Resolution 2359k 2359k
Lens Type Nikon F Mount Nikon F Mount
Continuous Shooting Speed 5.0 fps 5.0 fps
Video Resolution 1920×1080 1920×1080
Weather sealed No No
Image Stabilization No No
Color Depth Not Tested 24.1
Dynamic Range Not Tested 14.0
Low Light ISO Not Tested 1306
Battery Life 1550 820
Time Lapse Recording No Yes
Touchscreen No Yes
Selfie Friendly LCD No Yes
Wireless Connection No Yes
Bluetooth Connection Yes Yes
Microphone Port No Yes
AE Bracketing No Yes
Smartphone Remote Yes Yes
Built-in Flash Yes Yes
External Flash Yes Yes
Lenses Available 305 305
Dimensions 124x97x70mm 124x97x70mm
Weight 365g 465g

In-Depth Comparison

Both the Nikon D3500 and Nikon D5600 are entry-level DSLR cameras, but at different price points and release dates, there are advantages and disadvantages for each model.

Looking at the specs can help provide a better idea of which may be the best choice, but an in-depth comparison explains how these features function within the camera’s usage. The main differences between the Nikon D3500 and Nikon D5600 can be found in their design, battery life, video features, and connectivity features.


The Nikon D3500 and Nikon D5600 have similar physical designs, as both of them are compact DSLR bodies. Both cameras have the same dimensions, 124x97x70mm, but the Nikon D3500 is 100g lighter, only weighing 365g. While the body designs are nearly identical, the Nikon D3500 holds an advantage in weight.

The Nikon D3500 and Nikon D5600 are both equipped with LCD screens, and the Nikon D3500’s screen is 3’’ while the Nikon D5600 is 3.2’’. Along with a slightly bigger size, the Nikon D5600 has a fully articulating LCD screen, which allows it to be used from many different angles and can come in handy when used for selfies or vlogging.

Nikon D5600 fully articulating LCD screen

Image via Ken Rockwell

Neither the Nikon D3500 or the Nikon D5600 is weather-sealed, so they aren’t equipped for harsh weather conditions. Both cameras incorporate a hot shoe feature, allowing for external flash options, as well as built-in flash features.

Overall, the designs are similar, but the Nikon D5600 has significant advantages with its fully articulating LCD screen, especially for photographers who rely on being able to see the screen from different angles.

Battery Life

Both the Nikon D3500 and the Nikon D5600 have pretty impressive battery lives, and can last over 500 shots, but the Nikon D3500 has the upper hand when it comes to battery life. The Nikon D3500 can last for 1,550 shots, while the Nikon D5600 can last for 820.

With a 730 shot advantage, the Nikon D3500 is the better choice for photographers who are looking for a long lasting battery.

Image Quality & Performance

As far as beginner-level DSLR cameras go, the Nikon D3500 and the Nikon D5600 perform well against their competitors, yet each brings their own advantages to the entry-level field.

Image Example from the Nikon D5600:

Image of a boat on the beach

Image via Digital Camera World

The Nikon D3500 features 11 autofocus points, clustered in the middle of the field, which works well if your subject is not at the edge of your frame. The Nikon D5600 ups the number of points to 39 autofocus points, giving it an advantage over the Nikon D3500.

Image Example from the D3500:

Image of a fire hydrant

Image via DPReview

Both cameras forgo the Anti-Aliasing filter, which gives the cameras the ability to collect finer detail in their images, with the risk of added moire in some light settings. Getting the hang of a camera with no AA filter can be an adjustment, but it does add the ability for higher image quality.

Connectivity & Image Transfer

The Nikon D3500 and Nikon D5600 both have built-in Bluetooth connections, which allows for instant image transfer between devices. However, the Nikon D5600 takes it a step further and includes WiFi connection to speed up and make image transfer even easier.

Neither the Nikon D3500 or the Nikon D5600 have a GPS feature. Both cameras do have the ability to be controlled remotely through a smartphone, which makes it easy to get creative while shooting.


Both cameras have 1920×1080 video resolution at 60fps, so the Nikon D3500 and Nikon D5600 can shoot basic video, but are not made to be video cameras. With significant design advantages, however, the Nikon D5600 is the better choice for users planning to rely on the video function.

Nikon D3500 back screen

Image via DPReview

The Nikon D5600 has an external microphone port, unlike the Nikon D3500 which only has an internal mic, and this allows for the option to have better sound quality. The Nikon D5600 also has a fully articulating LCD screen, which can be manipulated easily for video footage, including flipped for selfies and vlog-style videos.

Final Thoughts

Both the Nikon D3500 and the Nikon D5600 are entry-level DSLR cameras that fit a lower budget, which makes them solid options for anyone wanting to get into the DSLR world. By choosing one of these cameras, any photographer would be able to get into the DSLR without shelling out too much at first.

The Nikon D3500 comes at a significantly lower price point, so if price is a deciding factor, this camera is probably the best choice. Along with the price, the Nikon D3500 has a longer battery life and weighs less, so it’s a good choice for photographers planning on doing long shoots.

The Nikon D5600 has the upper hand in several categories, including the autofocus system, LCD screen design, WiFi connection, and video features. With a fully articulating LCD screen, the Nikon D5600 works better for photographers and videographers wanting to easily shoot at different angles.

Overall, the Nikon D3500 is a great option for those with a lower budget, but the Nikon D5600 outshines in features for those willing to go up a bit in price.

Tumblr Photography Blogs Graphic

51 Tumblr Photography Blogs You NEED to Know

51 Tumblr Photography Blogs You Need to Know

Whether you are a seasoned or aspiring photographer, these Tumblr photography blogs should be on your radar.

Tumblr is a useful site where you can showcase your photography or look for inspiration. Plus, if you need advice or want to learn more about this art form, try reaching out to some of your favorite photography bloggers. Many of these blogs feature an “Ask Me Anything” box where you can connect directly with these photographers.

If you are ready to find some new photographer bloggers to follow, keep reading. We’ve gathered a list of over 50 Tumblr photography blogs you should know about:

No Ordinary Sunset

San Francisco Bridge

No Ordinary Sunset is a travel and photography blog where the photographer shares her “quest to capture the most extraordinary sunsets and a home for all the memories in between.” This blog can be a great source of inspiration for travel and landscape photographers.

Chris Burkard Studio

Chris Burkard Studio

Although Chris Burkard rarely updates this Tumblr account, the archive is filled with crisp, bright images of the outdoors. Scroll through this Central California artist’s portfolio for inspiration on nature photography.



This award-winning photographer offers a unique perspective on cities, streets, and architecture. On Tobishinobi’s Tumblr, the artist often provides a description of how he captured the shot.

Time LightBox

Time LightBox

For those interested in photojournalism, the Time LightBox Tumblr is a notable resource. Although no longer regularly updated, browse the archive for compelling photographs and news stories.

Photography Week

Photography Week

This Tumblr blog is associated with digital magazine Photography Week, which is a great resource for photographers of all levels. As you scroll through the blog, you can read excerpts from past issues and gain insight into how specific pictures were captured.

Portrait Page

Portrait Page

Instead of focusing on the work of a single photographer, Portrait Page curates interesting portraits from a variety of artists. By following this blog, you will be exposed to multiple perspectives and gain inspiration for taking compelling and modern portraits.

Spaces | Debora Smail

Spaces | Debora Smai

Debora Smail is a “Freelance Visualist specializing in Culinary, Editorial & Photojournalistic Photography.” Her Tumblr page is filled with unique shots of interior spaces. If you are interested in shooting restaurants, retail stores, or other interiors, check out Debora Smail’s page to help get your creative juices flowing.

Sonya Yu

Sonya Yu

This archived Tumblr page is the portfolio of San Francisco-based photographer Sonya Yu. As you browse her page, you will find a selection of photographs covering a wide range of subjects, including children, dogs, food, landscapes, and interiors. The vibrant and inviting pictures each tell a story and are worth studying for novice photographers.

Donny Tsang

Donny Tsang

Donny Tsang describes himself as “a photographer who explores culture through food. Working in a photojournalistic style, I capture candid moments of food makers in their kitchens.” His Tumblr page is filled with captivating images of fried chicken. He has worked with many culinary clients, including Food & Wine Magazine and Serious Eats, and is an artist that all inspiring food photographers should be aware of.

Ben Lowy

Ben Lowy

Ben Lowy started his photography blog as a way to showcase the images he captured around the world using his iPhone. Now, his blog is a photo journal of his daily experiences. This blog is a great demonstration that inspiration for great photographs can be found anywhere.

The World We Live In

The World We Live In

This archived Tumblr blog The World We Live In features a collection of interesting photographs from around the world. Browse their collection to gain inspiration and to get a glimpse into how a variety of photographers see the world. Expect to see plenty of impressive travel photographs on their blog.

L’oeil Ailleurs

L’oeil Ailleurs

For those interested in learning about the story behind the photograph, scroll through the collection on the L’oeil Ailleurs Tumblr photography blog. To accompany each picture, the photographer includes a blurb about their history and sources of inspiration. Some of the stories also include information about the cameras and equipment used to capture the shot.

Show Me Pictures

Show Me Pictures

Show Me Pictures has an interesting portfolio that focuses on the gritty and seemingly trivial aspects of everyday life. By capturing these elements in an artistic way, the photographer brings importance to these moments. If you need inspiration for taking this style of picture, browse the collection on the SMP blog.

The Photographers Directory

The Photographers Directory

According to their blog, “The Photographers Directory aims to project photographers on Tumblr on to the global stage, by recognizing and showcasing their original creative work.” Photographers can submit their original work to the site’s curators. When you review this blog, you will notice that most of the pictures include a helpful description of how the shot was captured.

Forgotten Iowa

Forgotten Iowa

Cody Weber is a photographer from Keokuk, Iowa. He spends his time traveling throughout the state. His blog, Forgotten Iowa, is a collection of the images he has captured along his journey. His images all tell a unique story of a place that is often overlooked by photographers.

National Geographic Found

National Geographic Found

Nat Geo no longer updates this account, but you should still browse the collection to check out these interesting captures. National Geographic Found was a blog dedicated to images from their archives. These vintage pictures can help you get an even greater appreciation for the history of this art form.

Original Photographers

Original Photographers

This curated blog is useful for anyone interested in learning from multiple artists. Original Photographers takes submissions and gathers original images from photographers across the world. Instead of only seeing the perspective of one artist, you can get an idea of how many different artists see the world.

Online Journal by Megan McIssac

Online Journal by Megan McIssac

Any aspiring photographers without formal training should follow Megan McIssac’s blog. This self-taught photographer began taking pictures when she was 7 years old and today she works as a freelancer. Her clients include Levi’s, Netflix, NoMad Hotels, and more. Browse her portfolio or take advantage of the question and answer section on her blog to learn from the artist.



If done well, black and white photographs are very compelling. Although this style can feel forced or tired at times, the RUSH blog shows how black and white can be used well. Scroll through the archive for an impressive collection of striking black and white images.

American Photo

American Photo

Photographers are inspired by many different things. Some want to capture aesthetically-pleasing shots. Others want to tell a story with their image. If you are working towards photojournalism or storytelling, browse the collection on the American Photo blog. Their curated archive shows how seemingly simple images can be used to tell an important story.

Please Excuse the Mess

Please Excuse the Mess

Please Excuse the Mess is a unique collection of eye-catching photographs. The images don’t seem to keep to a single theme, which makes them interesting and worth a look. Gather some inspiration from the eclectic mix of images in this archive.

Kyle Thompson

Kyle Thompson

Kyle Thompson is a 25-year old Portland, Oregon-based photographer. Many of the images in this blog are self-portraits. Kyle often answers questions, so feel free to ask him about his work or peruse the FAQ section on his blog to learn more about his camera equipment and editing style.

On Off Up Down

On Off Up Down

This blog is a portfolio of the Halifax-based artist Nick Wilkinson. His work mainly focuses on editorial and portrait pieces. Many of his images are black and white and showcase how to tell a story with everyday objects and locations.

Josh Hedge

Josh Hedge

Josh Hedge is a 27-year old self-taught photographer and author based in Australia. Other self-taught photographers will enjoy following his blog for motivation and inspiration. The main themes of his work center on nature, animals, and travel.

JW Photo Diary

JW Photo Diary

Johnathan Wykes is a UK photographer whose portfolio is featured in the blog, JW Photo Diary. In this blog, you will see examples of fashion photography, portraits, and street captures. Wykes has a distinct style that new photographers can learn from. His portfolio shows that you can create a signature look that connects your work without making each image look exactly the same.

Photographers on Tumblr

Photographers on Tumblr

If you don’t want to follow a bunch of different Tumblr photography blogs, consider following a curated blog like Photographers on Tumblr. This account pulls the most interesting and captivating original images from a variety of photography accounts. Following this account is a great way to find new photographs and gain inspiration from many unique sources.



If you are interested in nature photography, Boohwanj is a great account to connect with. The photography in this portfolio is compelling and crisp. The artist also offers an “ask” section on their blog so you can try to engage with the photographer and learn from their experiences.

Daniel Casson

Daniel Casson

Daniel Casson is a freelance photographer who began his photography career on Instagram. His work quickly attracted thousands of followers and today he works for a variety of notable brands including Land Rover, UK National Lottery, and Dominos. Follow his work on his blog or reach out with a question to learn tips from the photographer.

Takashi Yasui

Takashi Yasui

Takashi Yasui is a Tokyo-based lifestyle photographer. He uses his images to tell a story about daily life in Japan today. He often focuses on the gritty and interesting aspects of city life. Other photographers can follow his blog to gain inspiration for their own lifestyle shots.



RiverWind-Photography is a collection of original nature images inspired by the famous American photographer Eliot Porter. These images mainly focus on the Pacific Northwest. Other nature photographers might enjoy browsing this portfolio for inspiration or connecting with the photographer through their blog for advice or mutual knowledge-sharing.

Freddie Ardley

Freddie Ardley

Freddie Ardley is a landscape, portrait and fine art photographer. His work is inspired by the “incredible diversity of landscapes on Earth.” Ardley works as a staff photographer for Citizen Magazine and his blog showcases his unique and whimsical style.

Xuebing Du

Xuebing Du

The photographer Xuebing Du explains that they “explore the beauty of nature by emphasizing texture, light, and color.” You can explore their portfolio to get a glimpse at the impressive and interesting way the artist captures vibrant scenes in nature. This is a great blog to follow if you want to test your creativity and learn how to push the boundaries of light and color.



Reflections is the blog of Berlin-based photographer Olaf Meyer. He regularly posts interesting scenes of the outdoors, so this is a great follow for anyone looking to build their own nature photography skills. His blog features an “ask me anything” section, so feel free to reach out to connect with this artist.



Robert is a 26-year old Amsterdam-based photographer. His blog focuses on images he captures during summer backcountry hiking trips. If you are an aspiring photographer or use this as a hobby, Nature-Hiking is a great blog to follow. Robert’s work shows that you shouldn’t stop taking pictures even if it isn’t your full time job.

Swedish Landscapes

Swedish Landscapes
If you are interested in landscape photography, consider following the Swedish Landscapes Tumblr blog. This page is dedicated to original photographs of the changing seasons across Sweden. This photographer often notes when the photos are unedited so you can get an idea of the images they can capture without Photoshop.

Hannah Aspen Photography

Hannah Aspen Photography

Hannah Aspen is a 25-year old photographer with a background in the fashion industry. By “drawing inspiration from fine art, music and poetry, she hopes to unveil pieces of her dream world in her images.” If you are interested in landscape or editorial photography, this is a great blog to follow. She also offers an “ask me anything” section so you can learn more about her style and inspiration.

Street Photographers on Tumblr

Street Photographers on Tumblr

If you are interested in street photography, check out this collection. This blog is dedicated to reblogging the best street photography across Tumblr. By following Street Photographers on Tumblr, you can see the best street photography images without needing to follow multiple artists.

Sam Shatsky

Sam Shatsky

Sam Shatsky is a self-taught adventure photographer from the Pacific Northwest. His work “focuses on the unconventional side of photography, creating unique and abstract travel scenery focusing on a wide range of subjects, compositions and environments.” By following his blog, you will find inspiration for moody and edgy shots of nature.

Yuji Hirai

Yuji Hirai

Yuji Hirai is an Osaka-based photographer who focuses on travel and lifestyle shots. He uses his work to attract overseas visitors to travel to Japan. His blog is a great example of how you can use photographs to capture a feeling and inspire action.


This blog is the portfolio of German photographer Uwe Heinze. As you scroll through his collection, you will get a feel for the interesting perspective of this landscape and nature photographer. Following photographers who offer many different styles can help you expand your own perspective.

Steven Scarcello

Steven Scarcello

Steven Scarcello is a landscape photographer with an impressive portfolio. His work mainly focuses on rugged scenes. If you are looking to capture natural vistas, follow his blog for inspiration on framing the wilderness.

Good Morning, Hypocrite

Good Morning Hypocrite

Vinnie is a pilot who also captures interesting scenes on his travels. Use the “ask me anything” section to learn how he captures his shots and where he finds inspiration. His Good Morning, Hypocrite portfolio is mainly focused on nature and landscape photography.

Kelsey Lorene

Kelsey Lorene

Kelsey Lorene uses both a camera and her iPhone to capture the images on her blog. Her work shows that black and white photographs can be used to emphasize the story behind the image. Browse her portfolio for inspiration or use the “ask” section to learn more about her work.

El Oso Con Botas

El Oso Con Botas

Breaking away from the landscape and portrait photography we’ve focused on so far, this blog showcases compelling food photography. Scroll through the archive of El Oso Con Botas to find inspiration for staging and capturing images of food that make you want to reach through the image and take a bite.

Toma EvsuVdo

Toma EvsuVdo

Toma is a Russian-based photographer who specializes in food, portraits, and travel. If you also don’t want to box your own photography into one category, this is an inspiring blog to follow.

Rachel Anthoney

Rachel Anthoney

Rachel is a semi-amateur photographer who enjoys capturing nature and exterior shots. She offers a portfolio with the story behind each image, which is a great resource for learning about her captures. Connect with the photographer to learn even more about her style.



The blog Ikinuki describes itself as “day-to-day ordinary” images. But as you scroll through the portfolio, you will soon realize that the ordinary can still make extraordinary shots. Use this blog to remind yourself that great images can come from anywhere.



PWH3 focuses his work on the streets of New York. PHW3 is very transparent about his work. He explains, “I have used a variety of cameras over the years and still use different cameras for different situations. Depending on where I’m going, I’ll bring along a Lumix GX1, Lumix G3 or an Olympus EM-10. I also use a Nikon D5100 and a Nikon D90.” He also mentions that he enjoys editing his images and this is a great blog to follow if you want inspiration for the post-processing side of photography.

With Wild

With Wild

With Wild is a blog that focuses on nature photography. Use the “ask me anything” tab to ask the photographer questions about how they capture the perfect shot of animals and other natural scenes.

Claudio Blanc

Claudio Blanc

Caludio Blanc captures images of daily life in Buenos Aires. Many of the images are black and white. Browse the portfolio for inspiration on capturing your own interesting images of seemingly ordinary tasks.



This blog is a collection of the original photography by Wanwisa Hernandez. Follow this blog to see images of nature, animals, and portraits. Or, ask the photographer questions about their work to help improve your own skills.

Expand Your Photography Inspiration

Feeling inspired to launch your photography career or expand your hobby? Browse the Grid50 marketplace to find the photography and video gear you need to get going! We also offer a selection of resources on photography tips and tricks to help you expand your skills.

Sony a7iii vs. Sony a7riii

Sony a7 III vs. a7r III: The Complete Comparison

In this article, we break down the key differences between the Sony a7 III and the Sony a7r III, as well as provide a detailed analysis of their best features, so you can decide which is the best fit for you.

The Sony a7 III and Sony a7r III are mirrorless full-frame cameras released about a year apart. Both of these cameras have similar designs and features at different price points, so deciding between the two can be a bit tricky.

We broke down the basics for you, and give a detailed comparison of the defining features between the two to make your decision process easier. Check out the following:

Key Details at a Glance:

Here are the side-by-side specs of the Sony a7 III and the Sony a7r III:

Sony a7 III Sony a7r III
Price New: $1,998.00, Used: $1,700 $2,498.00, Used: ~$2,000
Release Date 2/27/2018 10/25/2017
Sensor 24MP Full-Frame BSI-CMOS 42MP Full-Frame BSI-CMOS
Viewfinder EVF EVF
Articulating LCD Screen Yes Yes
LCD Screen Size 3 3
Viewfinder Resolution 2359k 3686k
Lens Type Sony E Mount Sony E Mount
Continuous Shooting Speed 10.0 fps 10.0 fps
Video Resolution 3840×2160 3840×2160
High-Speed Video 120 fps 120 fps
Weather sealed Yes Yes
Image Stabilization Sensor-Shift Sensor-Shift
Color Depth 25.0 26.0
Dynamic Range 14.7 14.7
Low Light ISO 3730 3523
Battery Life 610 Shots 650 Shots
Time-Lapse Recording Yes Yes
Touchscreen Yes Yes
Selfie Friendly LCD No No
Wireless Connection Yes Yes
Bluetooth Connection Yes Yes
Microphone Port Yes Yes
AE Bracketing Yes Yes
Smartphone Remote Yes Yes
Built-in Flash No No
External Flash Yes Yes
Lenses Available 116 (72 Full Frame) 116 (72 Full Frame)
Dimensions 127x96x74mm 127x96x74mm
Weight 650g 657g

In-Depth Comparison:

Looking at key specs can give you an idea of what camera may better fit your needs, but here we provide a detailed explanation to help you understand how these features affect the functionality of each camera.


Sony a7 III vs. a7r III - Side by Side

Image via Techradar

As far as mirrorless full-frame cameras go, the Sony a7 III and Sony a7r III both have very similar, compact designs. Their dimensions are the same at 127x96x74mm, and the Sony a7r III is slightly heavier at 657g compared to the 650g of the Sony a7 III.

These cameras feature a small grip and the same button layout, which features smaller buttons than past generations. The Sony a7r III has one small difference in layout, as it features an additional socket for the flash sync.

Both of these cameras have articulating LCD screens, which allows for flexibility when shooting at different angles. The Sony a7r III’s LCD screen offers a higher resolution, making the quality live view sharper and smoother.

The Sony a7 III and the Sony a7r III both feature Electronic View Finders (EVF), but there is a slight difference between the EVF in each camera. The Sony a7r III utilizes a more advanced EVF with high resolution and the ability for High-Speed 120fps, which contributes to a smoother live view and sharper view.

Sony a7 III vs. a7r III - Ports

Image via DPReview

Neither of these cameras incorporate a built-in flash, but they do have the option for external flash mounts. The Sony a7r III has a socket for external flash sync, whereas the Sony a7 III does not.

Image Quality

The Sony a7 III and the Sony a7r III deliver great image results, and have similar image results for standard shoots. The main difference between the cameras lies within the sensor of the Sony a7r III, which has a 42MP sensor resolution. The Sony a7 III only has a 24MP, so the image quality of the Sony a7r III is sharper.

Sony a7 III vs. a7r III - Image Quality

Image via Mirrorless Comparison

The Sony a7r III also features no AA filter, which allows you to take pictures without auto-blurring of details. Between the sensor advantage and lack of AA filter, the Sony a7r III delivers sharper images, especially in still shots like commercial and portrait photography.

This isn’t to say that the Sony a7 III can’t hold up with its 24MP, but if sharper image quality is an important feature for your needs, the Sony a7r III is the winner.

Low Light Images

Another main difference between the Sony a7 III and the Sony a7r III is the ISO range and low light capability of the cameras.

The Sony a7 III features an ISO range of 100-51200, which can be expanded to 50-204800. The Sony a7r III has a smaller ISO range at 100-32000, which only expands to 100-102400.

With this advantage in ISO range, the Sony a7 III performs better in low light situations, with less noise in its shots. The differences in these cameras can be seen in the following examples, which highlight the noise in the Sony a7r III’s low light images and the strong performance of the Sony a7 III:

Sony a7 III vs. a7r III - Image Noise

Image via Mirrorless Comparison


The autofocus technology on these cameras works well on each model, but there are slight differences between the two. The Sony a7 III features 693 detection points, which covers 93% of the image field, and the Sony a7r III features 399 detection points, or 68% of the image area.

Example showing the expansive coverage of the Sony a7 III’s autofocus technology:

Sony a7 III vs. a7r III - Focus Points

Image via DPReview

The Sony a7 III has the advantage when it comes to autofocus, and it’s a great system if you do a lot of action or sports photography.

Continuous Shooting

Another area where the Sony a7 III excels is, surprisingly, the continuous shooting. The Sony a7 III has a lower resolution, which gives the camera an advantage when it comes to buffering and continuous shooting.

Image example from the Sony a7 III:

Sony a7 III vs. a7r III - Image Sample

Image via Fstoppers

The Sony a7 III has a larger buffer capacity, which allows for more burst images, and gives this camera an edge if you work heavily in action photography.


Both of these cameras have 3840×2160 video resolution with the high-speed option of 120fps. The Sony a7 III and the Sony a7r III both have microphone and headphone ports, which allow for external mics that produce better sound quality.

The autofocus technology of the Sony a7 III comes into play, allowing for smooth autofocus throughout the video, but it can be a bit unpredictable when there are multiple subjects in the shot.

Overall, the Sony a7 III and Sony a7r III deliver solid video results without much difference between the models.

Final Thoughts

The Sony a7 III and the Sony a7r III have very little difference in physical design, and the weight differences won’t matter once you’ve added lenses and any other accessories. The LCD and EVF design of the Sony a7r III provides a sharper, smoother view when using.

If you are a commercial or portrait photographer, the sharper image quality of the Sony a7r III will be a huge selling point, whereas the continuous shooting ability due to the Sony a7 III’s lower resolution may appeal more to action and sports photographers.

The autofocus and the low light ability of the Sony a7 III make it a great option for those who know they’ll be shooting in low light or action scenarios.

Overall, each camera is a great option for a mirrorless full-frame camera. If you plan on working with low light shoots and action photography, the Sony a7 III may fit your needs better. The Sony a7r III has a better sensor and provides sharper images.

Real Estate Photography Guide

The Complete Intro Guide to Real Estate Photography

The Complete Intro Guide to Real Estate Photography

In this guide, we break down the basics of real estate photography, including tips, pricing, and gear recommendations.

Usually seen as a business venture, real estate photography is a genre often suggested for photographers looking to make a living off of their skills. Like all photography, however, real estate photography is still an art form, and it requires practice, solid equipment, and a good eye for real estate to master.

This guide will help break down the basics of real estate photography, as well as provide some insight on how to get started, correct pricing, equipment needed, and tips for success.

What is Real Estate Photography?

As one of the most suggested ways to make a business out of your photography skills, real estate photography is the genre surrounding the real estate industry in which photographers capture images of homes for sale, model homes for building companies, and even some interior design firms.

What is Real Estate Photography?

Image via Fit Small Business

Real estate photography, like all photography, is still an art form, but it is also an important aspect of the real estate industry. This type of photography can be seen as a sales job, just as much as an art. Real estate photography relies on your ability to capture the property while making it look desirable without misrepresenting it.

Real estate photography is a client-based genre, where a lot of your work will be done for a client and you’ll have to focus on getting their vision correct. It’s an important part to mastering real estate photography, as you want to utilize your creative assets like angles and composition, while also providing your client with pictures that represent their vision.

How to Get Started

Like all types of photography, getting started in real estate photography can seem a bit daunting. Once you’ve made the decision to get into the business, there are a few beginning steps you can take to jumpstart your success.

Gathering the proper equipment is the first step to starting your journey into real estate photography. We’ll get to the details in a later section, but you’ll need to invest in a good tripod, wide-angle lenses, flash and lighting equipment, and good image editing software.

Real Estate Photography Example

Image via PictureCorrect

Once you’re comfortable with your gear, it’s time to practice, practice, practice. Like other types of photography, the more you shoot real estate, the more comfortable and better you’ll be at it.

Since real estate photography is a bit different than standard portrait photography or action shots, you’ll have to get used to the shots needed, such as which angles work best, what lighting is needed to highlight the property, and what gear works best for each shot.

Building your portfolio will help you turn your beginner experience into a business. Clients will be looking for examples that showcase your style and eye for the craft. Luckily, there are several options to build your portfolio before you actually book clients. Try taking pictures of your own home, and reach out to friends and family to see who would be willing to let you practice on their property.

Start networking with real estate agents in your area, as well as any real estate photographers you may already know. The best way to build your business is to connect with people in the industry to see how you could meet their needs.

Tips for Success in Real Estate Photography

Real Estate Photography Example

Image via Utah Real Estate Photography

Jumping into real estate photography can be a lot different if you’re used to other genres like portrait or commercial photography. Here a few tips for getting the most out of your pictures:

  • Avoid only taking wide shots. While shooting wide will be important for a lot of your shots, you don’t want to take every shot at an extremely wide-angle. Mixing it up will help you capture the property accurately, so don’t be scared to zoom in a bit. Shooting too wide in every room can create an inaccurate representation of the space because it can create unrealistic ideas of space in the room.
  • Move around. When starting out in real estate photography, your first instinct may be to camp in the corner to capture the whole room in each shot. Don’t be scared to move around and play with different perspective types. One point perspective may capture a room better than two-point in some situations, so do your best to move around and get as many different shots as possible.
  • Focus on your composition. Understanding elements in your photos, and using them to create appealing compositions will help highlight the features of the property you’re photographing.
  • Utilize different heights. A tripod will play a vital role in your photography, and adjusting the height can make a huge difference. Most tripods move vertically, just as they do horizontally, and by taking advantage of this you may be able to capture the room at a more flattering angle from a higher height.
  • Lighting makes a huge difference. Bring your own lighting equipment, and utilize flash when needed. Lighting can make a big difference when representing a space, so be sure to work and get the best lighting for each room.
  • Elevate your exterior shots. Height can make a difference for exterior shots, just like it does in each room. Elevating your shots can do wonders for capturing the exterior of the property. Check out DIY tricks if your tripod isn’t tall enough for what you want.
  • Less is more when it comes to image editing. The most important part of real estate photography is representing the property accurately. Image editing software, like Photoshop, will help polish your photos, but be cautious when editing because you want the photos to look as close to reality as possible.
  • Have a contract with your clients. This may seem like a no-brainer, but if you’re new to the game, it’s easy to overlook the business aspects when you’re excited for a gig. Be sure to agree on the details of the job with your client before the shoot, and have a contract signed before getting to work.

Pricing: What to Expect

Especially when you’re first starting out, pricing can range drastically for each job you do. Small jobs can be in the range from $100-$500, whereas bigger jobs may go up into the thousands.

Pricing is dependent on the real estate market in your area, as well as the price of the property you’re shooting, and the expectations of pictures from your client. Be sure to do enough research on your area when charging clients to ensure you’re getting paid properly for a job.

It’s a good idea to charge by the property size, not the hour, when shooting real estate. Another great idea is to offer different packages for your clients, which will allow them to choose a job that’ll fit their needs, and you’ll get paid accordingly. Consider charging more for extra services, like getting up early or staying late to get exterior shots during the twilight hours.

While pricing in the real estate photography industry can vary greatly depending on the job size and location, the most important thing is to be sure you’re getting paid and your clients feel like they’re getting a good value.

For reference, Fit Small Business’s Real Estate Photography Guide states the following for standard pricing in the California Bay area:

  • Standard Shoot (Properties less than 3,000 square feet): $225
  • Extended Shoot (Properties over 3,000 square feet): $325
  • Estate Shoot (Properties over 6,000 square feet): $425

Recommended Gear

Real Estate Photography Gear

Image via Photography Talk

Having the right gear will help you make the most out of your real estate photography. Some of the gear may seem a bit pricey when you’re deciding what you need most, so be sure to check out the Grid50 Marketplace to look at used options. Here’s a list of what you may need:

  • A good camera. This seems obvious, but there are a few features that may help you get ahead in this field. Any camera that has a flash mount, multiple lens options, and wireless connection for remote triggers will come in handy when shooting property. You’ll also want to pay attention to the ISO settings and color depth of the camera, as these can play a huge role in the outcome of your photos.
  • Different lenses. You want to be as versatile as possible when approaching real estate photography, so it’s best to get comfortable with utilizing multiple lenses.
    • Wide Angle Lens. This is a must-have for all real estate photography. Wide-angle shots are standard for the genre, so you’ll want to have a lens that can get these pictures. For full sensor, 14-24mm and 16-35mm are the most popular choices. For cropped sensors, you may opt for 10-22mm or 12-24mm for the best results.
    • Mid-range zoom lens. Standard exterior shots utilize “normal” zoom lenses. For full sensors, check out 24-70mm or 24-105mm. For cropped sensors, you may like 18-55mm or 16-50mm.
    • Tilt-shift lens. Avoid converging vertical lines that are commonly seen in walls and doors with a tilt-shift lens. A 24mm focal length is most common, and it will get the job done of making sure your lines stay vertical.
  • Tripod. A tripod will be your best friend when doing real estate photography. Since portability and weight aren’t huge factors when looking at tripods for real estate photography (because you won’t have to worry about carrying it around for too long), it’s best to choose a durable, heavy tripod. Tripods are super helpful when getting higher shots, so you’ll want one that’s sturdy and will support your camera.
  • Flash and lighting equipment. Flash diffusion and portable lighting will make a world of difference for your real estate pictures. As a real estate photographer, you’ll want to capture the property with a well-lit, bright, and clear view, so potential buyers get a good idea of everything. Investing in flash equipment, like a flash diffuser, remote flash, and flash mounts can help brighten up the dark spots in your photos.
  • Lens filters. While it’s important to portray an accurate representation of the property you’re photographing, lens filters can help get the perfect shot with better color. You don’t need a ton of filters, but a few can go a long way.
  • Camera pole. This is more useful if you plan to be focusing on a lot of exterior shots. A camera pole can help you reach new heights to capture the perfect angle of your subject.
  • Basic editing software. Photoshop and Adobe Lightroom are great options for editng your pictures. Real estate photography relies on quality editing that doesn’t misrepresent the property, so you’ll want a good editing software to get the job done.

Real Estate Drone Photography

Real Estate Drone Photography

Image via Drones Globe

With drones becoming more popular and easily accessible, drone photography is beginning to be more prevalent in the real estate field. Drones can capture aerial views of the property, which gives potential buyers a good idea of the property before they even visit it.

While drone photography can be cool, it’s not entirely necessary to have a drone to be successful in real estate photography. If you do want to explore drone photography, be sure to look for a drone with RAW image capturing and auto-bracketing to get the most out of your photos.

Recommended Resources

Once you’ve read our article, do a bit more research with the following sources to become a successful real estate photographer:

Let’s Recap

Real estate photography is a great genre to get started in if you’re looking for a way to turn your photography into a business (or you’re super into photographing property). Becoming a successful real estate photographer takes practice, and it’s important to build your portfolio to attract clients.

Focusing on your angles, composition, and lighting will help you get the best shots when you’re taking pictures of the property. To achieve these shots, it’s important to have the right equipment, including wide-angle lenses, a tilt-shift lens, a tripod, and lighting gear. Do your research when it comes to pricing, and be sure to get paid for your work.

Be sure to network with other real estate photographers you may know. Be sure to follow our tips and tricks to become a successful real estate photographer, and if you have any tips for others, share them in the comments below!

Canon T7 vs T7i

Canon T7 vs Canon T7i

Canon T7 vs. Canon T7i: The Complete Comparison

In this article, we break down and compare the Canon T7 and the Canon T7i, so you can easily decide which camera is best for you.

When deciding on which entry-level DSLR camera to go with, it can be hard to narrow down the best option for you. Since there are so many models and price ranges for these cameras, we took the opportunity to compare the Canon T7 and the Canon T7i to help you make the best decision.

Take a look at the side-by-side comparison of key specs, and read through our analysis of each camera to see which is a better fit for your needs.

Key Details at a Glance:

Here are the side-by-side key specs for the Canon T7 and the Canon T7i:

Canon T7 Canon T7i
Price New: $399.00, Used: ~$355 New: $799.00, Used: ~$600
Release Date 2/26/2018 2/15/2017
Sensor 24 APS-C CMOS 24 APS-C CMOS
Viewfinder OVF OVF
Articulating LCD Screen No Yes
LCD Screen Size 3 3
Viewfinder Resolution 920k 1.040K
Lens Type EF/EF-S Mount EF/EF-S Mount
Continuous Shooting Speed 3.0 fps 6.0 fps
Video Resolution 1920×1080 1920×1080
Weather sealed No No
Image Stabilization No No
Dynamic Range 100-6400 100-25,600
Low Light ISO 12,800 51,200
Battery Life 500 Shots 600 Shots
Time-Lapse Recording No Yes
Touchscreen No Yes
Selfie Friendly LCD No Yes
Wireless Connection Yes Yes
Bluetooth Connection No Yes
Microphone Port No Yes
AE Bracketing Yes Yes
Smartphone Remote Yes Yes
Built-in Flash Yes Yes
External Flash Yes Yes
Lenses Available 321 321
Dimensions 129x101x78mm 131x100x76mm
Weight 475g 532g

In-Depth Comparison:

At a glance, the key specs can help you see a lot of the differences between the cameras, but this in-depth analysis will help you understand how these differences affect the functionality of each camera.


Canon T7 vs T7i DimensionsBoth of these cameras are entry models for DSLR photography, which is evident in their similar designs. The Canon T7i was released 12 months prior to the Canon T7, and the release dates may explain the slight differences in design.

The Canon T7 is 129x101x78mm and 475g versus the Canon T7i, which is 131x100x76mm and 532g. The Canon T7 is lighter and a bit sleeker, but the discrepancies between the weights are small enough that they shouldn’t have a huge effect on any functionality.

Neither of these cameras feature weather-proofing in their design, so they’re not ideal for shooting outdoors without proper precautions in place. Both of these cameras work with the EF/EF-S mount for lenses, and there are 321 available for each camera.

The Canon T7i features a fully articulated LCD screen, and this allows the screen to be manipulated for easier use. Overall, there isn’t much difference in the design, but if a fully articulating screen is a necessity, the Canon T7i is the way to go.

Image Quality

Although the Canon T7 came out after the Canon T7i, some of the features in the Canon T7i contribute to a higher image quality.

Image Example from the Canon T7:

Canon T7 Image Sample

Image via DPReview

The autofocus feature in the Canon T7 has 9 points for recognition, whereas the Canon T7i has 45 points. The Canon T7i also has the upper hand when it comes to continuous shooting with 6.0 fps versus the Canon T7 with just 3.0 fps. These functions can make a big difference when it comes to image quality, especially if you plan to rely on the autofocus feature.

Image Example from the Canon T7i:

Canon T7i Image Sample

Image via PhotographyLife

As a newer model, the Canon T7 gained a better sensor that its predecessor, but the Canon T7i still leads when it comes to ISO and low light images. With an expandable ISO range of up to 12,800, the Canon T7 falls behind the Canon T7i, which has an expandable ISO range of 25,600.

With this difference in ISO sensitivity, the Canon T7i has an advantage in low light settings. The technology between the cameras are similar, though, and there won’t be too much difference between images in good lighting.

Battery Life

Both the Canon T7 and the Canon T7i have good battery life that will last throughout most standard shoots. The Canon T7 has a battery life of 500 frames, whereas the Canon T7i can last on a single charge for 600 frames.

Overall, battery life isn’t necessarily a deal-breaker for most photographers but the Canon T7i will last about 100 shots longer if that’s an important feature for you.


Neither of these cameras are highly praised for their video performance due to their nature as beginner DSLR cameras, but there is a big difference between the video functions and quality in each model.

The Canon T7 has a 1920×1080 video resolution, and can perform the task of taking basic video with its in-camera microphone. The Canon T7 lacks a microphone port, however, so you would have to rely on the camera’s microphone for your audio.

In comparison, the Canon T7i also has a 1920×1080 video resolution, but there are a few extra features that make it the winner in the video category. The Canon T7i has a microphone port that allows an external device to record your audio, which results in the option for higher quality audio.

The Canon T7i shoots at 60 fps in video mode, whereas the Canon T7 only shoots at 30 fps, and the Canon T7i allows for the same live view as it uses with its OVF. These features contribute to smoother video quality and easier to use video mode. The Canon T7i also utilizes digital video stabilization, which creates a stable video and contributes to overall video quality.

Additional Features

Canon T7i Screen

Image via Ken Rockwell

While the Canon T7 stands out with its lower price point, lighter weight, and newer release date, the Canon T7i has a few extra features that contribute to its overall functionality and usability. As a camera known for being a beginner DSLR model, the Canon T7i features a user guide that can help a novice photographer navigate its functions easily.

The Canon T7i also features Bluetooth connectivity and time-lapse recording features, making it compatible with other devices and possible to test your creativity.

Final Thoughts

Both of these cameras make great DSLR cameras for the beginning level. The Canon T7i has subtle differences from the Canon T7 in technology that make it a better choice for low-light photography, video, and creative shoots.

While the Canon T7 doesn’t have as many additional features, it comes at a much lower price point and uses the same lenses as the Canon T7i, so it is possible to get the same or similar images out of each camera.

With that being said, the Canon T7i has the upper hand when it comes to additional features, which makes it a great deal for its price point. If you’re willing to spend a little bit extra on your camera, the Canon T7i is the way to go.

Nikon D3500 vs D3400

Nikon D3500 vs. Nikon D3400

Nikon D3500 vs. Nikon D3400: The Ultimate Comparison

In this article, we compare the Nikon D3500 and the Nikon D3400 by highlighting their similarities and differences so you can decide which camera is the best fit for you.

With companies constantly coming out with new models and updated gear, it can be hard to determine which camera will work best for your needs. Luckily, we did the work for you and broke down the comparisons between the Nikon D3500 vs. Nikon D3400.

Take a look at the side-by-side details of each camera, and read through the in-depth analysis to see which is a better fit for you!

Key Details at a Glance

Here are the side-by-side key specs of the Nikon D3500 and the Nikon D3400:

Nikon D3500 Nikon D3400
Price New: $399.95, Used: ~$342 New: $499.95, Used: ~$313
Release Date 8/29/2018 8/17/2016
Viewfinder OVF OVF
Articulating LCD Screen No No
LCD Screen Size 3 3
Viewfinder Resolution 921k 921k
Lens Type Nikon F Mount Nikon F Mount
Continuous Shooting Speed 5.0 fps 5.0 fps
Video Resolution 1920×1080 1920×1080
Weather sealed No No
Image Stabilization No No
Battery Life 1550 1200
Time-Lapse Recording No No
Touchscreen No No
Selfie Friendly LCD No No
Wireless Connection No No
Bluetooth Connection Yes Yes
Microphone Port No No
AE Bracketing No No
Smartphone Remote Yes Yes
Built-in Flash Yes Yes
External Flash Yes Yes
Lenses Available 305 305
Dimensions 124x97x70mm 124x98x76mm
Weight 365g 395g

In-Depth Comparison:

At a glance, the key specs can give you an idea of which camera will fit your needs better, but here we provide a deeper analysis to highlight the main differences between each camera and understand how these features function within each camera.


Known for being great beginner DSLR camera models, both of these cameras feature the classic DSLR camera design, with a chunkier feel than mirrorless cameras and easy to access buttons and functions. Although these cameras follow the basic DSLR blueprint, there are a few design differences between the two to keep in mind.

The Nikon D3400 is older by two years, and weighs 395g (without a battery and memory card), while the Nikon D3500 utilizes a sleeker design, weighing only 365g (without a battery and memory card).

nikon d3500 vs d3400 dimensions

The dimensions vary slightly between the cameras as well, with the Nikon D3400 being 124x98x76mm and the Nikon D3500 being 124x97x70mm. The mere millimeters in size difference may not make much of a difference between the cameras, but it attests to how the Nikon D3500 is produced to compete with the modern DSLR market by using a sleeker design.

The Nikon D3500 utilizes a more substantial grip, which will assist with handling and using heavier lenses. This difference is important to keep in mind because neither of the cameras offer image stabilization, so small improvements to grip design can make a difference in image quality.

Overall, the design differences are small, but the Nikon D3500 focuses on utilizing a smaller design that may contribute to steadier images due to a better grip design.

Image Quality

The Nikon D3500 and D3400 are often seen as starter DSLR cameras due to their cheaper

price point and features, but they’re a great choice for the solid image quality and performance.

Image example from the Nikon D3500:

Nikon D3500 Image Sample

Image via DPReview

Both cameras feature an ISO range of 100-25600, and they are known for having great noise performance. While they both utilize the same sensor, it is important to note the Nikon D3500 uses a newer technology in its sensor. Since it’s a revamped model, the newer sensor technology may contribute to subtle differences in performance.

Image Example from the Nikon D3400:

Nikon D3400 Image Sample

Image via Have Camera Will Travel

Both models do not use an anti-aliasing filter, which allows for sharper images and performance. Another important aspect of both cameras is the lack of image stabilization. Neither camera provides image stabilization, so it’s good to keep in mind when trying to use heavy or long lenses.

Battery Life

One of the defining differences between the Nikon D3500 and the Nikon D3400 is the battery life. Each camera has good battery life for the price point, but the Nikon D3500 pulls ahead due to its revamped technology.

The Nikon D3500 has a battery life of 1,550 shots, while the older Nikon D3400 has a battery life of 1,200 shots. With a 300 shot difference in functionality, the Nikon D3500 is the better choice if battery life is an important feature for you.

Built-In Flash

Nikon D3500 Flash

Image via Focus Camera

Both the Nikon D3500 and the Nikon D3400 have external flash mounts, which are typically what is used by photographers, but these models also have built-in flash functions.

The main difference between these built-in flash features is the range, as the Nikon D3500 has a 7m range, while the Nikon D3400 has a range of 12m.

If you plan on utilizing the built-in flash function frequently, the Nikon D3400 may be a better option for you.


Both of these cameras have 1920×1080 video resolution, which results in decent video quality. However, neither of these models have a microphone port, so audio quality comes from the built-in microphone, which means the audio may not be great.

The lack of image stabilization may also have effects on the video quality, but both models would encounter this issue.


Since the Nikon D3500 is a newer model, it does have a few advantages compared to the Nikon D3400 in terms of technology compatibility. The Nikon D3500 comes with a built-in guide mode making it user-friendly for beginner photographers.

The Nikon D3400 and the Nikon D3500 are both Bluetooth compatible, but the Nikon D3500 allows the Bluetooth to work as a remote through the SnapBridge app.

Final Thoughts

Both the Nikon D3500 and the Nikon D3400 are great beginner cameras for those wanting to get started in DSLR photography, as well as great options for budget-friendly DSLR cameras. The design of the Nikon D3500 has been revamped, so it’s sleeker and lighter in weight than the Nikon D3400.

The Nikon D3500 and the Nikon D3400 produce similar quality images, however the sensor in the Nikon D3500 utilizes newer technology, which can lead to better quality. The Nikon D3500 also has a higher battery life, which is one of the main differences between the two models, and can be seen as a reason to opt for the Nikon D3500.

Overall, both cameras are a great value, and your choice may come down to whichever you can find with the best price deal. The Nikon D3500 is a newer model with some technology updates, but the Nikon D3400 works well for a beginning DSLR as well.

Sony a6500 vs. a6400

Sony a6500 vs. a6400

Sony a6500 vs. Sony a6400: The Ultimate Comparison

In this article, we break down the differences between the Sony a6500 and the Sony a6400 mirrorless cameras, so you can decide which camera is best for you.

Deciding between two similar cameras can be a tough call, and when prices are similar, it’s important to compare the features and see which is most compatible with your needs.

We did the work for you to make your decision easier, so look at the following side-by-side comparison of the Sony a6500 and Sony a6400 cameras to see which is the best fit for you.

Key Details at a Glance:

Here are the side-by-side key specs of the Sony a6500 and the Sony a6400 cameras:

Sony a6500 Sony a6400
Price New: $998.00 New: $898.00
Release Date 10/6/16 1/15/19
Viewfinder EVF EVF
Articulating LCD Screen Yes Yes
LCD Screen Size 3 3
Viewfinder Resolution 2359k 2359k
Lens Type Sony E Mount Sony E Mount
Continuous Shooting Speed 11.0 fps 11.0 fps
Video Resolution 3840×2160 3840×2160
Weather sealed Yes Yes
Image Stabilization Sensor-Shift No
Color Depth 24.5 24.0
Dynamic Range 13.7 13.6
Low Light ISO 1405 1431
Battery Life 350 410
Time-Lapse Recording With app Yes
Touchscreen Yes Yes
Selfie Friendly LCD No Yes
Wireless Connection Yes Yes
Bluetooth Connection Yes Yes
Microphone Port Yes Yes
AE Bracketing Yes Yes
Smartphone Remote Yes Yes
Built-in Flash Yes Yes
External Flash Yes Yes
Lenses Available 115 115
Dimensions 120x67x53mm 120x67x60mm
Weight 453g 403g

In-Depth Comparison:

Looking at key specs of each camera can help give you an idea of which camera will fit your style best, but here we go a bit deeper in-depth to help you understand how these features function within the cameras.


Sony a6500 vs a6400 DimensionsThe Sony a6400 and Sony a6500 have very similar designs, but there are a few differences that set them apart. Beginning with the dimensions, the Sony a6500 is 120x67x53mm compared to the Sony a6400 which is 120x67x60mm.

Due to the difference in depth, the Sony a6400 is slightly thicker in design. It’s not a major change to the camera design, and can be contributed to the hinge LCD screen, in which this camera allows you to flip the LCD screen so you are able to see yourself if you are taking selfies or vlogging.

Sony a6500 vs a6400 - Screen Comparison

Image via Engadget

The Sony a6500 does have a hinged screen though, just not one that will flip completely, instead it works well when angled to shoot above or below eye level.

Sony a6500 vs a6400 - Screen Comparison 2

Image via Imaging Resource

Slightly lighter in weight, the Sony a6400 is 50g lighter than the Sony a6500. Again, the weight difference isn’t a huge determining factor for which camera performs better, but it is important to note that the Sony a6400 is a bit sleeker in design.

Overall, the color, physical design, and dimensions aren’t very different, but when deciding between the two, the LCD hinge design can be a deciding factor. If you know you’ll be using your camera for selfies or vlogging, the design of the Sony a6400 is the way to go.

Image Quality

Another aspect of the cameras with very little difference is the image quality. Due to the 24.2 megapixel resolution, the Sony a6400 may technically have better contrast for some shots, but the difference isn’t very noticeable.

Shot on A6400:

Sony a6500 vs a6400 - Image Comparison

Shot on A6500:

Sony a6500 vs a6400 - Image Comparison 2

Images via Alphashooters

However, the Sony a6500 has built in image stabilization which helps utilize slower shutter speeds without having hand blur. Since the Sony a6500 has image stabilization built in, it makes it a better option for still shots.

The Sony a6500 also has a higher burst buffer, allowing 233 JPEGs or 107 RAW shots to be taken before the camera slows, whereas the Sony a6400 can handle 99 JPEGs or 46 RAW shots.


With the Sony a6400 being a newer model, the autofocus technology has seriously upgraded. The Sony a6500 takes 0.5 seconds to autofocus, while the Sony a6400 can autofocus in 0.025 seconds.

Of course, these speeds depend on the lighting and setting of your shoots, but the Sony a6400 can autofocus pretty quickly. The Sony a6400 has an impressive real time tracking feature that manages to really stick to its subjects, which is convenient for close up shots and far shots with moving subjects.

This camera is great for subjects that are constantly moving, like toddlers, sporting events, or even wildlife. If you’re looking for a camera with revamped autofocus technology that really gets the job done, the Sony a6400 is the better choice.

Low Light Performance

The Sony a6400 has a higher extended ISO, 102400, compared to the Sony a6500, 51200, which provides more flexibility with low light shooting.
Sony a6500 vs. a6400 ISO

Image via Jomaker

This speaks for itself, as the ISO range will allow for better low lighting shoots with the Sony a6400. This isn’t to say that the Sony a6500 doesn’t perform well in low light conditions, though.

As a newer model, the Sony a6400 is equipped with a broader ISO range to help with low light performance while also reducing noise. If you know you’ll be using your camera a lot in low light conditions, the Sony a6400 is a good choice.


Sony a6500 vs a6400 - Video Comparison

Image via Trusted Reviews

The newer Sony a6400 has been marketed towards the vlogging and social media crowd, specifically with the ability to flip the LCD screen to see yourself filming in real time. This addition makes video for vlogs, YouTube, and other self-recorded videos much easier than the Sony a6500.

One downside to this feature, however, is the screen will be blocked if you are using a microphone hot shoe attachment.

The Sony a6500 has built in-camera stabilization, which definitely comes in handy when shooting video. This feature helps reduce camera shake and produces smoother video quality when shooting video that can’t be stabilized with a tripod or rig.

Both cameras shoot 4k video, so the quality is great. With both cameras having a microphone port, quality sound is easy to achieve with these cameras as well.

If you plan on vlogging, you may choose to opt for the Sony a6400, since the features are more geared towards social media and vlogging activities. If you plan on shooting video that can’t be stabilized with a tripod, it’s probably best to go with the Sony a6500.

Final Thoughts

Overall, these cameras are similar in design and technology, with a few differences in autofocus and low light technology, as well as newer vlogging features in the Sony a6400.

It comes down to your purpose when deciding between the two cameras, with the Sony a6500 being a better choice if you know you need in-camera stabilization or a higher burst buffer, and the Sony a6400 having newer autofocus technology and a hinged screen for vlogging and selfie mode.

Nude Photography

The Complete Intro Guide to Nude Photography

The Complete Intro Guide to Nude Photography

In this guide, we provide an introduction to nude photography, along with tips, examples, and recommended gear.

Nude photography can be seen as an extension genre of portrait photography, and can be used for many purposes including artistic endeavors, commercial use, and educational use. Although this form of photography has been known to cause controversy among creatives, as long as it is executed and handled properly, it can deliver amazing and creative results.

Dating back to the earliest forms of art, the naked human form has always been a subject of interest for painters and sculptors alike. Making its way into the modern world, nude subjects have found a way into photography, as many nude photographers use this genre as a way to explore the human form.

While this genre can seem exciting and even a little bit mysterious to some, this guide will help breakdown the basics of nude photography while providing recommended sources and gear as well.

**Caution: This article features nude photos for the express purpose of photography/art. If you are uncomfortable viewing this type of material, please do not continue on.**

What is Nude Photography?

The basic definition of nude photography is a genre of fine art photography that depicts a human nude as the subject with an emphasis on composition and form.

Simply put, nude photography is less about having a nude model, and more about focusing on the human form. Nude photography is best seen as an extension of portrait photography, and it can deliver stunning results when handled correctly.

Nude Photography 0 6

Image via Smart Photo Courses

Although nude photography can sometimes be viewed as a touchy subject, looking at it through an artistic lens can help alleviate some hesitation towards the genre. Many photographers in this genre view the process as a sensual experience for the model and the viewer, as well as a way to strip down to the bare subject of human emotion.

Nude Photography vs. Boudoir & Other Subgenres

There are many reasons for one to get into nude photography, other than just taking nude portraits. Many nude photographers may want to explore promoting body positivity, using the pictures for educational purposes, artistic endeavors, and even commercial use.



Image via Looks Like Film

This style of sensual and intimate portraiture doesn’t necessarily require a completely nude model, but the principles of exploring human form and creating an intimate connection with the camera are the same. Boudoir is typically done by a subject for an intimate partner to enjoy, and can include costumes, nudity, and semi-nude poses.


This use for nude photography can help create diagrams and educational resources for analysis. When used in an educational manner, nude photography focuses less on the photograph, and more on how the subject can educate its viewers.

These photographs are typically used for illustrative purposes and are usually labeled for the viewer to understand what they are looking at.


Nude Photography 0 1

Image via Wikipedia

This subgenre tends to get a bad reputation for being degrading or bordering too close to pornography, but that’s not actually the case (when done correctly).

Even some of the first photographers explored the use of erotic photography, typically photographing their nude subject with consent for other patrons. It’s also important to note that this subgenre is meant to be sensual, rather than exploitive.

Glamour, Advertising, and Commercial Use

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Image via Business Insider

Glamour photography is typically what we think of when we see modern semi-nude advertisements. Think Abercrombie & Fitch or Cosmopolitan advertising campaigns, where the subject is alluring, but the model is never completely nude. This is used frequently in modern day marketing, which adds a commercial section for nude photographers to work in.

Nude Photography Examples

With the basic definition and subgenres of nude photography in mind, take a look at some of these examples to help you get started:

Nude Photography 0 8

Image via Lauren Naylor via 500px

Nude photography doesn’t always mean a full shot of nudity. Subtly alluding to the model’s nudity can create a complex image for the viewer. This shot utilizes a bathtub and steam to conceal and hint at the model’s human form. By leaving the hands, legs, and face visible, the photographer makes sure to keep the subject of the form in tact.

Nude Photography 0 7

Image via Lauren Naylor via 500px

By having your model face away from the camera, you can explore the other side of the human form without revealing too much of your model’s body. This is another way to add a layer of mystery to your photos while also emphasizing the beauty of the human form.

This example also utilizes a dark background with light highlighting the back of the form, which emphasizes this part of the model’s body as the subject of this picture.

Nude Photography 0 10

Image via Lauren Naylor via 500px

Once you get a bit more comfortable, and if your model is okay with it, try moving your shoots outside. This allows you to explore the human form in a new way, and to capture the beauty of the scene around your model. When shooting outdoors, be sure to do it in a secluded area where your model feels most comfortable, and don’t forget to let your model warm up (in clothes) between shots.

Nude Photography 0 9

Image via Jenn via Photo Critic

Lighting can make a huge difference in nude photography. This example shows how this genre can explore the ways lighting affects the human form, as the model’s form is emphasized by the soft light from the window she is facing. Get creative with your lighting, and see what works best for the mood you’re trying to convey.

Nude Photography 0 4

Image via Hans Proppe via Photo Critic

This image illustrates how complex the human form can be, and how it can be used in an abstracted manner to create a photo that requires the viewer to really look at what is happening. By focusing on a nude body, while not emphasizing the nudity but rather abstracting the human form, this example shows how the human form can be utilized for a photo’s composition.

Nude Photography 0 2

Image via Artemisia Artex via Photo Critic

This example of nude self-portraiture shows how you can experiment with the human form while delivering a traditional looking portrait. The traditional studio lighting and framing of the model makes this seem like a normal portrait, and the nude aspect allows the viewer to connect with the human form.

Nude Photography 0 11

Image via Fix the Photo

Once the model and photographer are comfortable with each other, trying out complex poses and different angles can provide nice results. This example utilizes interesting poses as well as monotone colors, which help emphasize the human form.

Nude Photography 0 3

Image via Smart Photo Courses

Working with a nude couple can definitely add options to your shoot. Of course, you’ll have to find models willing to do a nude shoot or find a couple who want a nude photoshoot together. This example shows two people standing hand in hand, but there are endless possibilities for poses when working with two people.

Nude Photography 0

Image via Oliver Vaseechi at Smart Photo Courses

Another example of using a couple for your shoot, this photo shows how it’s possible to create a scene where the subjects are delicately interacting with each other. Again, this photo emphasizes the human form and adds a layer of sensuality without degrading its subjects. To achieve a shot like this, your models must be comfortable with each other and verbal communication is key throughout the process.

How To Get Started With Nude Photography

Getting started with nude photography can be a bit difficult if you don’t know where to begin, but these steps can help you get started:

1. Find a Model

Having a model for nude photography is a bit different than standard portrait models. You’ll need to find a model that is comfortable modeling nude and is interested in shooting with you.

Maybe reach out to previous models you’ve worked with or any friends that have expressed interest in nude photography. Check out any photographers you follow on social media, and if they have a model you think you might want to work with, reach out professionally to discuss a potential shoot.

You can also check out places like Model Mayhem, Model Management, and Musecube for potential models. Just be sure to act professionally and appropriately when reaching out.

2. Get Comfortable With Your Model

Before actually jumping into a shoot, it’s important to establish a connection with your model. Maybe sit down beforehand to discuss ideas, get to know each other a little better, and talk out any awkwardness either of you may be feeling before the shoot.

3. Organize Your Equipment

Shooting nude photography doesn’t require too much fancy gear, but it’ll be helpful for you to know which lenses you plan on using and what props you want your model to work with.

4. Research for Inspiration

You should never copy another artist’s work, but looking through the other portfolios of nude photographers can help inspire your own shoots. See what kinds of poses, lighting, and props you like, and think about ways you could creatively incorporate these in your shoot.

5. Plan Your Shoot

The easiest way to have a smooth photoshoot is to plan ahead. Agree upon your location with your model, whether you work out of an in-home studio, professional studio, or want to try an outside shoot. Have a working idea of pose, props, and what shots you’ll want to get.

6. Get Creative

Try out shots in black and white. Experiment with different props like fabric, flowers, blankets, and bathtubs. Try close-up shots of different body parts, and full frame shots of your model. Just be sure to communicate what you want to try with your model before you actually try anything.

Nude Photography Tips

Like any genre, there are several tricks that can help you get the most out of your nude photography shoots. Following these tips will help you have successful shoots with stunning results.
Black and White Nude Photography

Image via DIY Photography

  • Make sure your model is comfortable. This may seem like a no-brainer, but always keeping a verbal dialogue going with your model is extremely important. You should make sure wherever you’re shooting is warm enough for the model as well because it can get pretty chilly when clothes aren’t involved.
  • Keep your poses simple. Most of the beauty from nude photography is going to come from the human form, so intricate poses aren’t exactly necessary in this situation. You’ll most likely get better shots when your model is relaxed, so the simpler the better.
  • Don’t ignore the details. All of your shots don’t have to be full body nudes. Get creative and focus on different aspects of the human form. Try focusing on the back, stomach, legs, or arms instead of the full frame.
  • Nude photography does not require complete full frontal nudity. Of course, there are instances when you’ll want to get a fully nude shot, but it’s okay to have your model cover themselves with body parts or props. Keeping some of the nudity obscured in shots can help add a layer of mystery to your work.
  • Don’t touch your model. This seems like a bit of a no brainer when working with nude models, especially when trying to create a comfortable space for you and your model, but if you’re used to shooting clothed portraits your brain may be on autopilot mode. Be sure to never touch your model, and work on verbally communicating any ideas or suggestions you may have.
  • Try out black and white. Nude photography is a great time to experiment with black and white photography, since there isn’t really any color from clothing in the shot, and it can deliver some beautiful results. The lighting can really highlight the human form, and experimenting with silhouettes can add mystery to your photos.

Blogs and Recommended Resources

If you’d like to explore nude photography further, we recommend checking out the following resources:

Recommended Gear

Since nude photography can be similar to portrait photography, you can plan on using your standard equipment like studio lighting, lenses, and camera accessories for a shoot.

While most of your typical portrait gear can work for nude photography, there are a few items that will help deliver the best results at your shoots. Try using the gear below for a successful shoot!

  • Longer Lenses (85mm, 50mm, etc). Using these lenses will allow you to get a full-frame body at a distance from your model. If you’re just entering the nude photography world, this is a good way to get comfortable with shooting nude models before getting close with a 35mm lens.
  • Props. Although this isn’t camera-specific gear, it is important to try and get creative using props. These can be simple items like sheets and sheer fabric, or they can be a bit more personality centered like a guitar or flowers. You can get creative with water and body paint, as well, just be sure to talk to your model about their preferences.
  • Lighting reflectors. Studio lighting kits can help emphasize the human form, and using reflectors can also add to your photos.You can also use reflectors to bounce natural light to create a softer effect in your images.

Exploring Nude Photography

Getting into the nude photography world can seem overwhelming at first, but having a full understanding of the expectations of the field including the subgenres, tips, and the recommended gear can help get started.

If you’re interested in exploring this field, be sure to do your research and get creative!

Photography Hacks

101 Photography Hacks, Tips & Tricks

101 Photography Hacks, Tips, & Tricks

One of the best things about photography is how easy it is to get creative, and the opportunities are endless. Buying equipment to produce specific shots can get expensive, but luckily there are tons of cheap and easy DIY hacks to help.

To get you started, this article covers over 100+ different DIY tricks, tips, and hacks you can use to up your photography game.

Read on or use the links below to “jump” to the section you’d like to check out:

DIY Photography Lighting Hacks & Tricks

1. Make a Cardboard Light Stencil

DIY Camera Trick

Image via Fstoppers

This quick hack uses materials you probably already have laying around at home: a cardboard box, print out shape, glue, Xacto knife, and colored wax paper. Pick your shape, cut it out, and start snapping some cool shots.

2. Use Glow Sticks For Long Exposure

DIY Camera Trick

Image via JENerationDIY

All you need for this hack is a few glow sticks, which you can usually pick up at any store

for $1, a model, and a dark room!

3. Use Steel Wool and Fire for Long Exposure

DIY Camera Trick

Image via PeterMcKinnon

For a more challenging and bigger long exposure shot, using steel wool and fire can result in jaw-dropping photos. Be careful though, this hack can be a bit dangerous, so be sure to use an open area and protective gloves if you want to attempt these shots.

4. Create a Makeshift Softbox Using a Shower CurtainDIY Camera Hack 27

Image via COOPH

This trick is a great option for a DIY soft light. All you need is a shower curtain, which you probably already have or can easily grab at the store, something to hang the curtain, a bright light.

5. Make Custom Bokeh Shapes

Photography Hack0 63

Image via How About Orange

This hack is super simple for those wanting to explore the world of Bokeh. Pick your shape, connect your DIY tube to your lens with a low aperture setting, and have fun shooting.

Pro Tip: Work on adjusting your focus and lens to get different styles and Bokeh effects.

6. Create a Reflective Card Using Aluminum Foil & Cardboard

26 1

Image via DIYProjects

Grab a piece of cardboard you probably have laying around and wrap it evenly in tin foil. The easiest DIY reflector in under 5 minutes!

7. Create a Beauty Dish Using an Aluminum Roasting Pan


Image via DIY Photography

Another simple lighting trick: grab an aluminum turkey-roasting pan, a lambency diffuser (you can even DIY one with this trick), and a colored lid for the diffuser. A few short steps and you’ll be on your way to perfectly lit model shots!

8. Create a DIY Light Table Using Cardboard

Photography Hack0 4


A great prop for product photos. Just grab a cardboard box, some tape, and start putting together this super cool light table.

DIY Flash Diffusers

9. Coffee Filter Light Diffuser

Photography Hack0 21

Image via Sixth Bloom

Here’s for all the coffee drinkers out there! Simply grab an extra filter and a rubber band to make this flash diffuser. It’s so easy you can even do it before you’ve had your daily caffeine intake.

10. Use a balloon for flash diffusion

DIY Camera Trick

Image via Digital Trends

Low on coffee filters? No worries, a white balloon works just as well. Grab your balloon, blow it up, and hold it in front of your pop-up flash for this quick flash diffusion trick.

11. Create a Light Snoot Using a Pringles CanPhotography Hack0 39

Image via Story Blend

This trick might give you an excuse to finish an entire can of Pringles in one sitting, but it’s also super easy for getting more focused lighting in your shots. Just place the can over the flash, and you’re good to go.

12. Build a DIY Flash Diffuser Using a Film Container

Image via Lomography

This hack makes a quick flash diffuser while giving you a great way to repurpose your film containers. Just cut the film container to fit your pop-up flash, and you’ll be ready to start shooting.

13. Bounce Your Flash Using a Business Card

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Image via DIY Photography

This trick is great for a quick way to bounce your flash. Just attach your business card to your pop-up flash, and you’ll be amazed at the difference in lighting.

14. Build a Ring Flash

Photography Hack0 16

Image via Flickr

This hack requires a bit more craftsmanship, but gives some great results. Using a plastic bowl, some foil, and your camera’s pop-up flash, follow the steps and you’ll be ready to snap shots with this flash ring.

15. Use a Paper Plate as a Beauty Dish

Photography Hack0 6

Image via DIY Photography

All you need is a paper bowl that you probably can find in your kitchen. It won’t achieve the exact same look as a beauty dish, but it’ll certainly work as a quick DIY hack to modify your lighting.

16. Create a Flash Diffuser Using a Milk Carton

Photography Hack0 40

Image via Techradar

Got milk? Seriously, that’s pretty much the only thing you’ll need to make this flash diffuser. All you have to do is cut out the milk jug handle and trim it to the size of your flash!

17. Build a DIY Reflector Using PVC

Photography Hack0 46

Image via Flickr

If you have extra PVC pipe, this is a cool hack to try. Attach your flash to the PVC pipe and watch as it bounces off the reflector to help diffuse the light.

18. Create a Flash Grid

Photography Hack0 20

Image via Strobist

This can be done easily with a piece of honeycomb cardboard and a rubber band. Look around any packages or boxes you’ve gotten recently, and you’ll probably be able to pull this hack off without spending any money.

19. Create a Flash Bounce

Photography Hack0 44

Image via Instructables

Just grab some cardboard and a cheap mirror, and you’ve got a super easy DIY bounce flash.

20. Create a DIY Flash Diffuser Using Airline Barf Bags

Photography Hack0 14

Image via Digital Photography School

If you are the travelling type, you may have this trick laying around in your unpacked suitcases. Slip an airline barf bag (or any white bag) over your flash for an instant diffuser.

21. Use a Cigarette Pack as a Flash Diffuser

Photography Hack0 64

Image via Instructables

If you have an empty box of cigarettes laying around (or if smoking isn’t your thing, any box around the same size) slip it over your flash and open the top for quick diffusion.

22. Velcro and Foam Flash Booster

Photography Hack0 51

Image via TipsDIY

This hack allows you to use foam and velcro to focus your flash to areas you directly want to highlight in your photos. It’s cheap and easy to make!

DIY Backdrop Ideas

23. Build Your Own Lightbox Using Poster Board

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Image via Techradar

So easy! Just tape a sheet of paper over a well-lit window and place your subject in front. There’s no hassle to get some quality product shots, so just be sure to adjust your Exposure Compensation accordingly.

24. Use Wallpaper as a Backdrop

Photography Hack0 49

Image via MrsBeachBride

A super simple way to get a great backdrop. Just find a wall with cool paper and start snapping!

25. Fake a Backdrop Using Your Laptop

pppp 1

Image via Photography Juice

Pressed for time to get some product pictures or maybe just not sure what to use as a background? No worries, just pull up an image of your choosing on your laptop and start snapping.

26. Build a Lightbox Using Cardboard

Photography Hack0 52

Image via Maeling Designs

This trick may take a bit of time to make, but it’s totally worth it. Lightboxes can be expensive, but if you have a box, some tape, and tissue paper, you can make one yourself. Just follow the steps above, and you’ll be ready to experiment with the lighting of your new box in no time!

27. Create a Portable Seamless White Background

simple small product sweep setup2


Image via Fstoppers

This trick is great for getting the perfect seamless background in your product pictures. Simply grab some poster board, sweep the board, and hold it up using two clamps. Seamless and painless!

28. Create a Collapsible Light Box

Photography Hack0 38

Image via Instructables

For those looking to save space, this collapsible DIY lightbox may be the better option. All you need is some foam core and an exacto knife to get started.

29. Add Bokeh Using Tinfoil

DIY Camera Hack 01

Image via COOPH

A super quick way to create silver bokeh using an item most likely in your kitchen drawers right now. Add a mirror under the item you’re shooting, and you’ll be ready to test out your newest bokeh creation.

30. Create a Textured Background Using a Cloth

DIY Camera Hack 04

Image via Fstoppers

Using a cloth is a super easy way to add some texture to your background. This is great for product pictures when you want something a little more interesting than the plain white background, and using the sweep technique will keep the seamless look.

31. Create backdrops using your TV

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Image via Grafdom

Similar to using your computer screen, this trick allows you to have a bigger backdrop for your photo.

32. Try a black tile for your product photography

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Image via Expert Photography

Try using a black backdrop with a black tile underneath your product for a crisp image with an interesting reflection. It’ll add to any simple product picture without being too distracting.

33. Use trees or bushes for a backdrop

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Image via DIY Joy

Have your model stand in front of trees or bushes to create an immersive nature photo.

Camera Lens Hacks

34. Use a Magnifying Glass for Macro Photography

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Image via Digital Photography School

Thinking about trying macrophotography, but don’t have a lens for it yet? Try it out with a magnifying glass to get those up close shots. You can even leave the magnifying glass in the frame for a unique picture

35. Remove Your Lens for a Macro Effect

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Image via Improve Photography

This hack is pretty neat, and super easy to test out. All you have to do to shoot in macro is take off your lens and hold it in front of the camera. This only works in manual mode, and using a tripod will help keep the images sharp.

36. Use a Beer Cozy to Protect Your Lenses

DIY Camera Trick

Image via Digital Photography School

Need a quick and easy way to protect your lenses while travelling or doing a shoot? Slide them in a beer cozy, and they’ll be good to go.

37. Use a Wine Rack to Store Your LensesWine Rack Lens Storage

Image via Petapixel

If you are looking to organize all of the lenses you have laying around, this hack is perfect for you. Any wine rack will work, and you can store multiple lenses on it.

38. Use Pantry Shelves to Store Lenses

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Image via DIY Photography

Another simple way to store your lenses safely and efficiently, just use pantry shelves. This is great if you have a lot to store and you’re trying to save space!

39. Wrist Rubber Band to Prevent Zoom Creep

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Image via Lifehacker

Avoid the annoying problem of your camera lens moving due to gravity by using a wristband to prevent zoom creep.

40. Create Colored Lens Filters Using Markers

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Image via My23skidoo

This DIY hack is easy and tons of fun. All you need is paper, scissors, plastic and string. Simply cut out the plastic shape and get creative by adding a design with markers.

41. Build a Macro Lens for Your Phone

DIY Camera Trick

Image via DHMakerBus

This hack is pretty easy, and will allow for macrophotography on your phone. All you need is an old laser pointer, a hairpin, and some tape. Just grab the focusing lens out of the laser pointer, use the hairpin to hold the lens, and attach it with tape.

42. Use a Plastic Cup for Macro Photography

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Image via Petapixel

Another trick for easily exploring the world of macrophotography, and you probably have all of the materials you need already. Just grab some plastic cups from the kitchen, and tape one to your lens. This also works as a way to add soft light to your subject.

43. Build a DIY Tilt Lens

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Image via Maciekpp

These instructions will teach you how to DIY your own tilt lens, so you can work with tilt-lens photography to capture some awesome pictures.

44. Use a Coffee Cup Sleeve as a Lens Hood

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Image via DIY How To

Another use for your morning cup of joe. Just reuse the coffee sleeve from your cup to create a quick lens hood.

45. Create a Macro Lens Using a Toilet Paper Roll

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Image via COOPH

You can try macrophotography by attaching an empty toilet paper roll to your lens and camera. Super simple with great results.

46. Create a Lens Filter Using Your Sunglasses

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Image via COOPH

Use your sunglasses for a quick lens filter. Just hold them up to your lens and start shooting!

47. Create a Lens Filter Using Colored Plastic Bags

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Image via COOPH

Place a few colored plastic bags around your lens for an easy hack to get the colored lens filter. This trick also adds a bit of a soft light effect around the photo’s edges!

48. Use Drinking Glasses as a Lens Filter

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Image via Wolfeye

You probably have tons of glasses in your kitchen cabinets, so give them another use by grabbing one and trying it out as a lens filter for a cool effect.

49. Create a Lens Filter Using Markers & Plastic

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Image via Olivier Schmidt

This crafty hack adds soft light and color to your shots easily. Just place the plastic over your lens, use a marker for your desired color, and start snapping those shots.

50. Use Reading Glasses for Macro Photography

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Image via GadgetHacks

If you have a pair of reading glasses lying around, or you can buy a cheap pair at any store, you can use one of the lenses over your camera lens for instant macrophotography.

Cool Photography Effects

51. Window Blinds Effect

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Image via List AKA

This is an easy way to create a window blind effect if you don’t actually have window blinds. Just use a piece of paper, cut “blinds” into the piece, and hold it up to the light to create the desired effect.

52. Multi Person Illusion

DIY Camera Trick

Image via 5-minute Crafts

Create the illusion of multiple people using only one model by utilizing the panorama feature on an iPhone. Just start on one side, have your model run to the next spot once the shot has moved past them, and you’ll have a multiple person picture.

53. Use Cloth to Achieve a Soft-Focus EffectPhotography Hack0 15

Image via Artfido

Another quick and easy way to create a soft focus, just wrap a piece of cloth around your lens to achieve the desired effect.

54. Use a Smartphone to Create a Reflection Effect

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Image via My Modern Met

All you need for this hack is your smartphone! Place it at the base of your camera lens, and your images will have a reflection effect to create fantastical issues.

55. Add a Film Burn Effect Using a MatchDIY Camera Hack 41

Image via Bored Panda

This simple trick will create the illusion of film burn on your images. Just light a match and hold it in front of your lens while shooting.

56. Use a Flashlight to Add a Lens FlareDIY Camera Hack 43

Image via Peter McKinnon

By bouncing the light of a small flashlight off your lens, you’ll create an easy lens flare effect on your images. You can even try this with the flashlight on your phone, so you don’t have to worry about carrying around extra equipment.

57. Create a “Haze Effect” Using a Sandwich Bag

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Image via Petapixel

Create a simple hazy look for your photos using a plastic sandwich bag. Slide the bag around the edges of your camera lens, and you’ll achieve this effect easily.

58. Create a Soft Focus Lens Using Clear Plastic & Vaseline

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Image via Free People

Using a piece of clear plastic and vaseline, you can create a soft focus lens that allows you to get creative with the design. Spread vaseline onto your plastic and use in front of your lens while shooting. The more vaseline in one area, the more opaque the outcome will be, so get creative with the different effects this can make!

59. Create a Lens Flare Using a CD

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Image via Bored Panda

You can create a lens flare using a CD to reflect the light back into your images at different angles. For best results, don’t forget to remove your lens hood before trying this out.

60. Create a “Grid Effect” Using a Tea Strainer

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Image via Christina Key

You can create grid shadows using an old tea strainer. Just hold the strainer at different levels of light in front of your subject to create this shadow effect.

61. DIY Soft-Focus Filter With Pantyhose

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Image via Giga

Using pantyhose, black or nude colors are recommended, you can achieve a soft-focus filter by attaching the pantyhose to your lens with a rubber band.

62. Use a Plastic Bag to Achieve a Softbox Effect

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Image via Bored Panda

You probably have tons of plastic grocery bags lying around your house, so make use of them by trying out this quick hack. Tie a bag by it’s handles and simply hold it in front of your flash to achieve an easy soft-box effect.

63. Create a Bokeh Effect Using Battery Powered Lights

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Image via SLR Lounge

DIY this Bokeh effect by using battery powered string lights. The lights are lightweight and small enough to travel with you on shoots, plus their flexibility can give you endless possibilities for pictures.

64. Use Fishing Wire to Create a Lens Flare

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Image via Expert Photography

By attaching fishing wire to your lens, you’ll be able to create a lens flare in your photos. The lines won’t actually show up, and you’ll be able to see the effect created by the light hitting the wire and spreading out across the image.

DIY Camera Rigs

65. String Tripod

DIY String Tripod

Image via Wix

This trick helps eliminate camera shake and is way easier to work with if you don’t want to carry around a bulky tripod. Using a bolt, string, and a washer, you can DIY this rig in a matter of minutes. Just tie a long piece of string to the bolt on one end and the washer on the other, and attach the bolt to the bottom of your camera where you would typically screw in a tripod mount.

Whenever you’re ready to start shooting, simply step on the washer and pull the camera up to create tension.

66. Make a Macro Photography Lighting Rig for Compact Cameras

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Image via Wildlife Gadget Man

This trick requires some handy work, but is definitely worth the effort. Using two LED desk lamps and following a few steps, you’ll have a lighting rig for your macro photography ready to go.

67. Make your Gorilla Pod Magnetic

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Image via Petapixel

This trick can make your already handy Gorillapod even more useful. Using magnets that fit inside the feet of your Gorillapod, carefully drill a hole and place the magnets inside. Although, it’s important to know this trick will void the warranty on your Gorillapod.

68. Build a Tripod Using a Hand Clamp

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Image via Lifehacker

This hack is quick and easy if you have the right tools to try it out. Just attach your camera with a screw to a hand clamp, and then use the hand clamp to position the camera wherever you’d like.

69. Make a Flexible Selfie Stick

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Image via Petapixel

This hack is great for creating a flexible selfie stick that works with cameras, not just smartphones. This can also act as a stand-in for any flexible tripod, so follow the steps and get super creative with your shots.

70. Use a Lamp as a Tripod

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Image via Improve Photography

Not as practical as some of the tricks on this list, this hack makes use of a lamp instead of a tripod. If you’re at a party and want to take a group picture while simultaneously impressing your guests, this is a cool hack to try. Simply remove the lampshade, and screw your camera where you’d typically place it on a tripod.

71. Use a Bag of Lentils as a Makeshift Tripoddiy camera hacks 7

Image via Digital Camera World

This hack is a crafty way to reduce camera shake, especially when using long lenses. With an old pair of jeans, a bag of lentils, and a little bit of sewing, you’ll have a pretty unique tool to use for camera stabilizing.

72. Create a Beanbag Tripod

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Image via Do It Yourself Divas

Similar to the hack above, this bean bag acts as a tripod and stabilizer for your camera. Your sewing skills don’t have to be perfect to get to work on this easy bean bag, and it’ll provide quick support for your camera during shoots.

73. Create a DIY Flash Mount Using a GPS Holder

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Image via DIY Photography

This hack is pretty simple to try, simply place your flash into a GPS holder and start shooting!

74. DIY Tripod Umbrella Holder

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Image via DIY Joy

Another quick hack for shooting in the rain! This is better for light rain, and it’ll protect you and your camera easily.

75. Stabilize Your Camera With a Tennis Ball

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Image via Lifehacker

Attach a tennis ball to the tripod area of your camera for an instant stabilizer. The weight of the tennis ball will reduce camera shake without getting too much in the way while shooting.

76. Makeshift Smartphone Tripod

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Image via Scoop Whoop

Make a quick and easy tripod for your smartphone to get the perfect Instagram shot. All you need is two binder clips and a small piece of cardboard.

77. Use Cardboard to Get Easy Overhead Shots

DIY Camera Trick

Image via Hungry Panda

This trick works best with a smartphone and a remote clicker. Using a piece of cardboard and tape, you’ll be able to get the coolest overhead shots hands-free.

Cool Photography Props

78. Use a Smoke Emitter in the Background

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Image via Picture Correct

Using a smoke emitter can add some interesting vibes to your pictures. This prop can be used for all kinds of shoots, so feel free to get creative with it.

79. Try Out a Crystal Ball

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Image via Picture Correct

Using a crystal ball can give you really cool results pretty easily. This prop flips the scene, which adds something interesting for the viewer to look at.

80. Try Out a Sun Catcher

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Image via Picture Correct

If you want to add cool light effects to your photos, try out a sun catcher. This works similarly to a prism to break up the light rays, and it delivers awesome results.

81. DIY Bounce Wall

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Image via Expert Photography

Bounce your flash with this cheap DIY bounce wall. This hack is great for creating soft light to your photos.

82. Build a “Ring of Fire” Using Wire & SparklersDIY Camera Hack 17

Image via COOPH

Sparklers are an easy prop to add cool effects to your photos. This trick shows you how to create a “ring of fire” using sparklers, which gives the effect of fire without the danger.

83. Add Steam Using a Simple SteamerDIY Camera Hack 18

Image via Nicolesy Blog

This trick is great for any foodie or product photographer. Easily add steam to your pictures by using a simple steamer that’s out of the shot.

84. Use Tinsel as a Prop

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Image via Expert Photography

Grab some of your holiday tinsel and hold it up to your camera lens to reflect the light for some really cool effects.

85. Shoot Through a Window for Softer Light

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Image via Expert Photography

Use a window for portrait photography if you want softer light and possibly some texture from reflections!

86. Try Using Lace in Your Self-Portraits

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Image via Bored Panda

Use lace over your subject and camera to add a simple dreamy effect with interesting shadows.

87. Use a Hair Dryer to Add a Wind Effect to Hair

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Image via Bored Panda

Have your model, or an extra person, hold a hairdryer out of the shot to DIY the blown out hair look.

88. Use a Spray Bottle

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Image via SLR Lounge

All you need for this trick is a spray bottle and some water. Spray a bit of water into your shot, and let the light do the rest.

89. Create a Reflective Photo With a Mirror

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Image via Hungry Panda

Use a mirror with your model to create a unique shot. Just find an interesting scene for the mirror to reflect and snap your pictures.

90. Shoot Through an Object to Force Perspective

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Image via Petapixel

Using cylindrical items to shoot through can force a different perspective and has some seriously unique outcomes. By using a plant pot and dirt, this example makes it seem as if the photo was taken from the hole being dug.

91. Use Plexiglass to Capture Water Shots

DIY Camera Trick

Image via Petapixel

By holding a big sheet of plexiglass in front of your camera, you can capture some intense water shots without worrying about damaging your equipment or obscuring the shot.

92. Use Colored Beads for Bokeh Effect

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Image via Get Fractals

Pick up some cheap plastic beaded necklaces for your next shoot, and you’ll be able to capture their colored reflections in your picture to mimic a Bokeh effect.

Everything Else

93. Use Paracord to Make a Wrist Strap

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Image via Digital Photography School

If you’re not a big fan of camera straps, or need something a bit smaller, you can use paracord as a wrist strap. It’s durable and easy to attach!

94.Use a PEZ Dispenser as a Hot Shoe Attachment for Kids

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Image via Improve Photography

Kids can be a tough subject to shoot, but adding something to your camera for them to focus on can be a huge help. A PEZ dispenser fits on your camera’s hot shoe, and as a bonus, you can give out the candy to kids when they’re behaving.

95. Use a Hands-Free Headset as a Camera Remotediy camera hacks 21

Image via Instructables

By following these simple steps, you can easily turn a $3 hands-free headset into a camera remote.

96. Protect Your Camera From the Rain Using a Ziploc Bag

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Image via Purple Summit

Shooting in the rain can pose some problems, but by using a Ziploc bag and gaffer tape, you can protect your camera during rainy shoots. Keep in mind this doesn’t completely waterproof your camera, however, so it’s best to use this trick in light rain instead of a downpour.

97. Create a Rain Guard Using a CD Spindle (Case)


Image via Lifehacker

Another way to protect your camera from rain is using a CD spindle and a plastic bag. Cut out the spindle to the size of your lens and attach it with gaffer tape. Protecting your camera during rainy shoots has never been easier.

98. Use a Fish Tank as an Underwater Housing Case

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Image via The Buff Nerds

This trick allows you to take cool underwater shots without ruining your camera. Using a fish tank and following the instructions will have you ready to take your shoots to the next level.

99. Remove Tourists From Your Photos

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Image via Bored Panda

Want to get beautiful scenic shots, but tourists keep getting in the way? Here’s a solution to the problem many travel photographers face every day. Just follow the steps, and you’ll have great shots with no tourists.

100. Create a Slider Using a Towel

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Image via Sheldon Evans

Using a towel can help you get a smooth slide in any video. Just put your towel on a flat surface, and place your camera on the towel. Once you start filming, drag the towel across the surface for a quick DIY slider.

101. Create a Timelapse Using an Egg Timer

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Image via TWiT Tech Podcast Network

This video shows you a simple way to use a GoPro and an egg timer to create a timelapse. Just follow the steps to try out this cool trick.

Now Get Out & Start Shooting!

With all of these DIY hacks to try, it’s time to get excited and start planning your next shoots. These new ideas are a sure way to get the creativity flowing, but it’s important to know you don’t have to DIY everything just to keep photography cheap.

Grid50 is here to make buying (and selling) camera gear easy and affordable, so if you need a new lens or rig for any of these projects, be sure to check out the Grid50 marketplace.

What are some of your favorite photography hacks? Let us know in the comments below!