Build your own camera stabilizer

This is quick one, and one of the best tips I've seen lately! If you're like me and don't have a decent tripod or you don't like taking it everywhere you go, and also if your lenses have no image stabilization, this may come in handy. In a few minutes you can build your own flexible stabilizing device/flexible tripod, and best of all, you can carry it in your pocket! If you don't believe me just take a look at the video:

[vsw id="Af3aJ2kviJ4" source="youtube" width="480" height="385" autoplay="no"]

f-stops explained

This is a subject that for a long time has caused a lot of confusion in my head. Also, I have the feeling that very few people actually know what they're talking about when refering to f-stops or apertures in photography. Because I'm a geek I decided to go a little deeper and finally cleared all my doubts. Well at least almost all of them. I'll try to explain here what I've learned in the most simple way in the hope of making someone happier, and also to test my own knowledge. First things first...

What's the aperture?

I assume you have a slight clue on this, but anyway, simply put, the aperture is the actual hole that sits in your lens and lets light go through it until it reaches the sensor (or film plane).  The size of the hole can be controlled by the photographer if the lens (on older systems) or the camera allows it. The f-stop scale that we see in most lenses has this kind of progression:

f/1.4 - f2 - f2.8 - f4 - f.5.6 - f8 - f11 - f16 - f22 - f32

Most lenses nowadays have a slightly longer scale because they offer some steps in between.

Continue reading →