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The Power of Cropping

Lesson 38 from: Photography 101

SLR Lounge, Pye Jirsa

The Power of Cropping

Lesson 38 from: Photography 101

SLR Lounge, Pye Jirsa

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Lesson Info

38. The Power of Cropping

Next Lesson: Color Schemes


Class Trailer



The Camera is Simply a Tool


How Does a Camera Work?


How to Adjust Shutter Speed, Aperture, ISO


Exposure Triangle


What is a Stop of Light


Reading Exposure Via the Histogram


Blown Highlights or Clipped Details


White Balance & Color Temperature


No Such Thing as the Correct Exposure


How To Measure or Meter Light


8 Key Points to Understanding ISO and Image Quality


Understanding the 3 Primary Metering Methods


How to Get Perfect Exposures in One Shot


Equivalent Exposure but Different Images


Compensating for Light and Dark Scenes


Starting with Automated Modes


Auto Mode and Flash-Off Mode


Portrait Mode on a Fashion Shoot


Landscape Mode on the Beach


Sports or Action Mode


Macro Mode with Food Photography


Creative Effects Mode - Floral Photography


In-Camera Processing


A Glimpse into RAW Processing


15 Tips When You’re Having Trouble Focusing


3 Primary Types of Autofocus


Single Shot with Portrait Session


Single Shot with Action Shots


AI Servo with Action Shots


Focus Recomposing vs. AF Point Selection


Shutter Speed and the Reciprocal Rule


How to Hold a Camera and Panning Tutorial


What Makes a Great Photograph?


How to Capture Candid Moments


How to Find the Right Light Direction


5 Basic Compositional Theories


The Power of Cropping


Color Schemes


Diving into the Narrative


If It’s Not Working With, It’s Probably Working Against


More About Your Camera and Lenses


Understanding Megapixels


Crop vs. Full Frame Cameras


Crop vs. Full Frame Cameras Demonstration


Prime vs. Zoom Lens


How the Lens Affects Composition


Dynamic Range and RAW vs. JPEG


5 Tips on Memory Cards


10 Tips on Buying Gear




The Good Karma Jar


Posing and Action Shots with Female Model


Posing and Lighting with Female Model


Posing and Lighting Couples Portraits


Lesson Info

The Power of Cropping

In this video, I want to talk about cropping now cropping is another one of our forces that go into our artistry component, but here's the thing. Why are we including cropping over with the compositional kind of discussion? Aren't they one in the same? Well, here's, my perspective on it is that cropping is really different from composition and that's. Why I've made them to different things when I crop it's really more for the overall story, it's. What I want to include in an image what I don't want to include it's. Basically this story that I want to be telling, however, an image that is cropped a certain wait, it's still going tohave a certain composition, and just because I'm cropping doesn't mean I don't have a composition. I would choose still the compositional theory or with a combination that I like most for that particular image. That helps me to tell and basically to sell that story. But the crop is really what we're deciding to choose within a frame and to give you an example ...

of that, we've set up a nice little picnic scene here and for our picnic scene, we're gonna have our lovely couple coming in just a moment. I'm going to show you how basically by cropping on this different scene, we can tell a whole number of stories we can crop to show the entire scene, we can crop to show just little details, we can crop to basically show anything, and it really is going to help us overall in our final product, especially if it's going to an album or a website or a magazine spread if we have these different crops and each one kind of tells a different story or a different part of our overall scene, we'll have a much stronger product in the end. Okay, so let's get started, we're gonna bring in our couple and we're going to set him up, by the way, as far as our lighting again, we've set this up to be against the sunlight, keeping christian, won't you guys come in here while I'm talking? We're going to basically have them right here and they're going to backlit, but we do have a nice feel like coming in from the front so it should look really nice if we need to we can add another silver side to kind of do a little bit extra feel light and so forth, but we'll just kind of adjust and do that in the scene once we get this set up, so guys wanted to come in and have a seat and I'm thinking we have keith on the side of the champagne and christine on the shot side of the pillows, okay, so we've got them in position let's talk about what we've done here now I thought it would look kind of cool we came across this scene, we had a great back life set up, we have these beautiful trees in this branch right here on the right side doesn't really nice to have actually framing them, and I thought it looked nice and unique it's different from, well, a standard or typical picnic scene who might do in the grass on the beach or something. So I added a little bit of flavor, but kind of doing it on these rocks don't you think so they're disagreeing with me just really they don't they're like we're good, but I just do your thing, okay, so what we have is we have some flowers, arrears and pillows these pillows are just I said pillows funny but these pillows they're just accent colors okay? So we're using yellow accent colors because again are seen well it's all green it's all kind of this nice yellow leaves in the background and if you even look at their dress and their clothing we have kind of hints of yellow everywhere so these are the tones were going for yellows and greens and ten these air all analogous colors again we're going for that kind of harmonious look in this scene also the wife, the whites on his clothing, the greys ah white in the flowers again these are all analogous colors of the scene everything's going kind of tie together is going to come up with a really nice overall image. What we're going to doing here is we're going do a few different shots were going to do some will not shot like drinks we're going to take sips of our champagne and we're going to take a few different photos so what we're going to do is focus in on different areas so for example, well, I'm going to go ahead and dial in my exposure first I'm set up right now in a thirty five millimeter I'm actually going to switch this out teo switch out the fifty first and we're going to do a couple close up detail shots, get our exposure right and everything with the fifty and will come back to this okay, so I've got my fifty one point eight on I'm going to go ahead and just dialing and exposure, so I'm going to switch over to my spot, me two real quick, and we're just going to our same little tricks here. I had to bring up their little guide, me tearing, we're gonna go to spot and that's perfect. Okay, I'm gonna bring it up right over her face. I'm going to meet her for her and just go right underneath her eye. I'm going to get in really tight. Sorry, but here I'm getting like, this is like creepy lee close, but the closer I get, the better it's gonna meet her because I just want her to just two meter the skin on lee. Ok, so the camera to meet her this skin. So right around one, one sixteen of a second. So right around one one sixty this second I'm going to go down to f too, and then we're going to go up tio I so two hundred so let's, go ahead and just bring this over to two hundred let's, take a quick shot, just a double check and it looks pretty solid it might be a tiny bit on the dark side, so what I might do, ah every time I say dark side I feel like I'm talking about star wars might be a little bit in the dark no not star wars like exposure okay, so let me back up I'm just going to check out the overall scene I'm going to drop this to one one hundred at least until we're ready to start doing mohr candid type shots we're going to canon shots I do need to speed it up but for right now let me just get a quick look at one, one hundred because I do want to be a little bit on the brighter side so I'm going to bring it up to maybe let's go backto one two hundredth and to see if let's see artist a graham looks and actually I won two hundred second it looks a tiny bit dark on the display but in the history of it looks totally fine. This is exactly why I say to make sure that you're using the history because this is one of situations where I would kind of want to go a little on the brighter side and blowing things out ok so where I want to want to have to we're going to shoot at f s o two hundred what to do first is going to start out with some of these details so let's do this let's go get in close on these strawberries and kind of on the flowers these air, those set up shots there, the shots that are going to kind of tell the overall story and and let me have you kind of bringing a hand over like you're gonna pluck a strawberry. Okay, so just kind of bring the hand in. Yeah, actually grab one. Perfect that's. Great. And then I'm gonna go into this side. We're gonna get a little shot of our lowers. Perfect. Okay, so olivia won't have you bring that in. I want to see what it looks like. If we just bounce a little bit of light, you have to stay outside the frame. So stay over on this side, but bring it all the way up, and I think we can catch a little bit of light from the scene and just reflect right into them. Okay? So go there. There. Okay. Perfect. That's. Great. That's. A nice little differ right there that that little kick or that little fill of light is going to really kind of help make the scene that much more, much more. Better that much more better. Guys. That's how it's gonna be all right, we're gonna do is take a couple of scenes shots here, so let's, go ahead and I'm going to crop so that we get the bottoms of their feet. So this is a completely different crop than those close up shots as you guys can see again, we're telling the story of him them being in this little scene together I want you guys to look towards each other now perfect I'm going to switch to go kind of with a little side composition so we're going to shoot with them on the left third love it interact with each other a little bit guys just kind of there you go perfect well give me a little bit of playing around little joking around okay, I'm going to get a little bit low we're gonna shoot for these big nice trees in the background guys look at each other again kind of there you go perfect in the moment now we're gonna do is we're going to switch on to I'm going to go for an eighty five I'm gonna crop a little tighter with that last shot we're going to going for a negative space now negative space doesn't necessarily have to be just open space negative space can refer to just basically open side of the frame or it can be like open clean space we have basically the tree in that negative space but it's still negative space where we can place text we can place other things in the image a purse, a putting together, a card and so forth okay, so what I'm gonna do is just kind of want you guys to wrap up each other's hands a little bit that's beautiful see what the shot I'm composing it so that the hands are towards the left third of the frame and I'm going to get clothes I'm gonna do one where we're composing with the hands in the center of the frame, okay, so this is what I mean with every crop still has its own composition it's just the crop is telling the overall story is defining what we want to talk about. I think their feet or q and I love their hands and since I'm going to go for a crop that kind of really shows off mohr of their clothing mohr of the overall kind of scene, but not so much about them or their their faces it's just gonna be like their bodies in there. Everything else in this shot the details, okay, we're going to go for the details so let's, go ahead and what we're going to do is uncork the champagne again plan, right? So he's setting up I want to prepare, I want to lock in my settings one, two hundred second is good, I want a little bit of action in the court if I can get the court kind of flying out it's going to look really cool that's a really hard shot to get but we're going to try and increase our chances of getting it by setting up everything being ready we're going to focus we're gonna lock in anticipate where the action is going to happen and they're going to try and get the shot so where you going to cork it where you're going to be firing right have that would be awesome actually should we try that do it like right off the side of the camera okay famous last words ok did you want to get yeah I'm going to get kind of your hands you're doing that and then let's have your hands in the scene still so yeah christine kind of there you go there you go I'm just getting the details of him basically opening up the bottle and everything okay I'm gonna hold up one second okay I'm going to get I'm getting a little back far so I can get a shot of them as there opening the champagne so kind of like a couple different focal length if you have a zoom is great but again I want that prime look so I've got to get a little bit of movement so I just haven't pause here and there so I can move back and forth okay I'm going to speed up my shutter speed two two fifty just to make sure that we can get this on then let me aah! That was awesome. That was completely unplanned. He did not touch the cork, if you can plan, prepare logging the setting to anticipate and ready for it. When it happened, we just went with it. I wasn't expecting to either kind of surprised all of us, but we got these hilarious shots that, you know, you probably wouldn't put him in a magazine, but they're awesome keepsakes for you guys, so, okay, so we are done in our little picnic scene here. Hopefully, this helps you all out to understand how cropping really changed the story of an image, and how each crop has it own composition and how it it seemed like this, we can choose, and we can crop in different areas to really add to an overall composition and tell a better story.

Ratings and Reviews


I watched this class "live" and was simply amazed at the amount of information Pye covered. Yes, he talks a little fast, and since I was streaming the class I couldn't stop it to review anything, but this guy really knows his stuff and explains it very well so I absorbed quite a bit. Bye is enthusiastic, clearly enjoys his craft, and delivers excellent information to students in a light heartedI and fun way. I think some reviewers are a bit harsh about his humor. Lighten up, people! His examples and the additional information his co-host provides are very worthwhile and you can tell the course was well thought out. I plan to buy the class to help me get back into DSLR photography.


I really enjoyed this class. I am not a beginner, but there were still things I learned here that I found helpful. I really enjoy learning from Pye. He is quick, gets to the point and doesn't spend a lot of time going over and over the same point. There is a wide variety of things that he covers, so really something for everyone. I would recommend purchasing this class if you want to understand your camera better, improve your technique and start taking better photos.

Joy Bobrink

I have tried to learn photography myself via the internet / YouTube but always felt like I was missing something in my foundation. Sure I can zero out my meter...but why? How do I know the settings I've selected are the correct ones? I've been circling this drain for a year until this course. WOW! Pye has SO MUCH information in every video. He doesn't just stand in a classroom and talk, he's out in the field actually putting his settings into his camera, talking about why and why not and then shooting. He's hands on the entire course. You don't just hear him, you see exactly what he's doing! I'm a visual / listening learner and this is my eureka moment! Thank you Pye! Watching the Exposure video and how you changed the settings yet maintained the exact same exposure was mind blowing. Awesome course! I would recommend this to anyone new to photography or anyone that feels like they don't have all the info.

Student Work