Mini-tutorial: Photography tricks for a Canon ELPH 170

(This is a bit of a repost from last year. Sorry for repeats. I’m doing some housekeeping here switching from the old blog to the new. I hope, new visitors, you enjoy this article! And for my faithful readers who’ve been with me since this blog began, I hope you still find this of use!)


From time to time I post pictures on my blog. After a stupid mishap last summer, I had to purchase a new camera and have been fiddling around with it and generally learning all its tricks. Now, for those of you that don’t know, I’ve been a shutterbug since college (or to be completely honest, I see from looking through some family pictures that the hobby goes back to my childhood!). Anyway, I really got into it in college when I took a class and got a (standby for the geekery) Pentax ME SLR 35mm camera

Yeah, it’s blurry. I know. I shake a little. That and photography is another
topic altogether!

that to this day I lament its death (not to mention the relative death of film processing). I’ve graduated to digital cameras but in my opinion, they just can’t hold a candle to that old film monster. *moment of silence for dead camera* (FYI, this is the main reason Trevor’s brother, in my book THE ARTIST’S INHERITANCE (on sale now here), is a photographer. You can find out more about the book here).

Part of what I’ve lamented losing that film-based 35mm for is all the neat filters and tricks it used to do. Now, the digital point and shoots are mostly for those who want to take pictures of their family or on vacation and that’s fine, but I am, first and foremost, artistic when it comes to my pictures so all the polarization and macro lenses and filters were a joy to fiddle with. The quality of black and white the old 35mm could get me was just out of this world. No digital camera measures up. I’ve been (for one reason or another) breaking in a new digital camera (a Canon ELPH 170 , for those of you that are interested in that kind of thing) and the process of trying to learn how the thing reacts to different lighting situations, figure out how to stop motion when I want to, or create a motion blur when I want it to, has been a battle of trial and error. I’ve been taking a ton of test pictures and trawling the web and trying to learn all I can. Sure you can reproduce much of it in Photoshop, but I’d like to do as much in camera as I can. So imagine my delight when I ran across some articles about how to reproduce some of these effects. For instance, I’ve been experimenting with motion blur. Why, most average photographers would ask, would you want to blur a picture? Well, it makes the most awesome pictures! This article was particularly helpful for my little muse. (Yes, I want to bug Mr. Muse about going to the fair next time in it’s in town, right?)

This one too, (I’ll give you a minute to peruse the great pics, especially the last one on that page was inspiring and helpful)

Most of us camera geeks know that slowing down shutter speed can do this. However, the Canon point and shoots have the disadvantage that they don’t allow you to control that (even in manual, unless I am overlooking a button–and anyone who’s used this camera if you know better, please point me in the right direction!) I’ve always thought that ISO was based on the amount of light coming into the lens. I had never thought it could create that type of effect. I am supposing that’s because I’m thinking in film not digital terms. So I tried this trick that that Photography Life article suggested, fiddling with the ISO and came up with some interesting “pictures”. One of them (and for you from the blog hop, this is what you’re here for) is this:

Canon 170 Motion blur trick by Juli D.Revezzo

That, my lovelies, is the moon, a little drunk. 😉 No. What it really was is me shooting the moon at Program, with an ISO setting of 200 and just moving the camera in an exaggerated way, and it produced a drawing in light. Cool, huh? FYI, I found out that you can actually move too fast and lose your picture. It takes some trial and error to get the effect you want, but if the final product is something lovely like that, it’s worth the trouble.

Have fun!


Understanding ISO–a beginners guide (DSLR)

45 Beautiful Motion Blur Photos–Smashing Magazine

That’s my contribution to Saturday Snapshots this week. If you want to see more, stop by:

West Metro Mommy Reads

Juli D. Revezzo is the author of the Antique Magic paranormal series and the Celtic Stewards Chronicles fantasy romance series, as well as the Steampunk romance Watchmaker’s Heart. Her books are available at Amazon and elsewhere.

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