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Aliasing

What Is Aliasing and How Does It Relate to Digital Photography? In photography aliasing is a form of distortion that occurs when two elements of the signal being processed to form a digital image become indistinguishable from one another. Aliasing often appears in an image in the form of moiré or false colouring. Many digital cameras feature a built in ‘anti-aliasing filter’ to counteract the effects of aliasing by preventing high frequencies of light from reaching the sensor. This introduces a small amount of blur to detailed areas of an image that can prevent aliasing from occurring. The image...

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Apodization Element

What Is an Apodization Element and How Is It Used When Taking Photographs? The literal definition if apodization is ‘removing the foot’, in photography terms however the term relates to the process of altering the shape of light entering a lens. In simple terms an apodization (often refered to as an APO, APD or STF lens) is a type of neutral density filter which becomes thicker towards its edges. The gradual thickening of the element limits the amount of light allowed to transition the lens progressively towards the edges of the image area. This has the effect of smoothing the...

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Astrophotography

What Does Astrophotography Mean? Astrophotography is the art of photographing nighttime skyscapes and astrological objects such as stars and planets in the night sky. Successful astrophotography requires knowledge of various photography techniques such as use of long exposures for creating star trails, knowledge of camera sensitivity to avoid excess noise levels in photographs of dark skies, and the use of camera steadying equipment such as tripods to aid in the capture of sharp long exposure images. Astrophotography techniques can even be used to capture images of objects that would otherwise be invisible to the naked eye for example far away...

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Color Palette

What is a Color Palette When Talking About Photography and Image Editing? Also referred to as ‘palette’ the term ‘color palette’ describes the entire range of colors that can be rendered by a digital device such as a camera LCD or a computer monitor, or the range of colors contained within a specific image. A computer monitor may have a color palette of 16 million colors, an image on the other hand often contains a much smaller number, often 256. The term is also used to describe a collection of colors, usually displayed graphically in RGB triplets, which a...

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Fill Factor

What Does Fill Factor Mean When Talking About Photography? Fill factor is the ratio of the light sensitive area of a pixel to the total area of a pixel on a digital imaging sensor. The higher the fill factor, the more sensitive a sensor is to light. Sensitivity directly effects the ability of a camera to capture images in low light situations without having to use either long exposure times, which can lead to loss or sharpness, or high ISO levels which can lead to excess noise. Light sensitivity and performance is one of the most important factors to...

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Fill Flash

What Does Fill Flash Mean When Talking About Photography? In photography fill flash is light, produced by a flash unit which fills in a darker area of an image. Fill flash is not intended to overpower the main light, but bring out the detail lost in shadows. Fill flash is particularly useful in situations where the image subject is backlit by bright light, for example shooting a subject with the sun behind them. Without fill flash the dynamic range of such a scene would be to high to be captured in a single image, causing the subject detail to...

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Fill Light

What Is the Definition of Fill Light in Photography? Fill light is form of supplementary light mainly used to lighten shadows in an image. Fill light is often used in portrait photography to create a contrast between the image subject and image background giving the scene a sense of depth despite the final product being 2 dimensional. In this situation the use of fill light also reduces the overall dynamic range of the scene allowing for easier selection of the exposure settings required to capture an image. When fill light is correctly applied it does not significantly impact the main...

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Flash Exposure Compensation

What Is Flash Exposure Compensation When Talking About Photography? In photography flash exposure compensation is a feature that allows the photographer to add exposure compensation to output power of their flash units. Flash Exposure Compensation can be + (plus) or – (minus) in increments of 1/3 EV (exposure value). It is important to note that flash exposure compensation effects the flash output only, the cameras exposure settings remain unaffected. This allows a photographer to reduce dynamic range by brightening dark areas of an image without effecting the exposure or brighter areas. Flash exposure compensation can only be used in...

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Image Browser

What is an Image Browser and how is it used in photography? An Image browser is a piece of software specifically designed to allow viewing of digital image files. Modern digital photographers often have catalogues of tens of thousands of digital photographs, an image browser can be used to quickly visually search, organize and delete image files. Image browsers allow images to be organized on the fly using information stored in the image file’s metadata. This allows a photographer to find specific images or types of images extremely quickly, a much better solution that looking through thousands of images...

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Image Editor

What Is an Image Editor and How Is It Used When Taking Photographs? When talking about photography, an image editor is a piece of computer software which is used to edit a digital image file. Modern editing software, for example Adobe Photoshop, is extremely powerful allowing the quick application of complex editing techniques such as color mapping, masking and retouching in a non destructive environment; changes made to the original digital image file can be undone allowing a photographer to experiment with various techniques to produce a desired image. The pattern of changes made to an image can also be...

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