The holiday season is upon us. And because it is, your digital camera and camcorder are going to get more of a workout.

In this edition of the Macworld Video I offer a few simple tips that will help prevent you from ruining a precious holiday moment.

Download Macworld Video #82

  • Format: MPEG-4/H.264
  • Resolution: 320 x 240 (iPhone & iPod compatible)
  • Size: 8.5MB
  • Length: 4 minutes

Show Notes

During the video I show you the most basic pitfalls one can encounter when handling a digital camera and camcorder. If you’re truly interested in taking better photos (and yes, you can use many of the same techniques with a camcorder), allow me to recommend a couple of very helpful resources.

Macworld’s own $13 (PDF) Digital Photography Superguide is a great way to get started with a digital camera. Not only does it offer tips for choosing a digital camera, but it provides a wealth of tips and tricks for producing great looking pictures with that digital camera.

Ben Long’s Complete Digital Photography is the most well-worn photography tome in my growing library of books on the subject. It’s a well-written and comprehensive guide that I turn to again and again. Read it and follow Ben’s advice and you will become a better shooter. Ben is a frequent Macworld contributor and a buddy of mine.

And then there’s Derrick Story’s The Digital Story Web site, a terrific source for digital photography podcasts, blogs, tips, equipment reviews, and much more. Derrick is another great shooter and frequent Macworld contributor (and yes, another buddy of mine).

To prove that I’m not promoting just the work of my friends, I’ll also recommend perfect-stranger-to-me Joe McNally’s book, The Moment It Clicks. This book is all about light and describes how McNally got some of the shots he produced for Sports Illustrated, Time, and National Geographic. Yeah, he’s got better gear than you, but his images and techniques will still inspire you.

Other sites worth your time include Strobist (it’s about the light) and the blogs of a couple of pro photographers, Chase Jarvis and Vincent Laforet.

For your audio/pictorial pleasure, cock a keen ear at Alex Lindsay and Scott Bourne’s This Week in Photography. If you’re hoping to find a group of local folks to shoot with, take a gander at Meetup. And if you’d like to receive cool and approachable photography tips and techniques by e-mail, subscribe to the Photojojo newsletter.

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