Hey everyone! OK, so I got good feedback from people interested in talking part in the monthly photo challenge, so we’ll get started now and see how it goes. Please read through the directions to help this flow as smooth as possible. I’ve been going through many different concepts for photo themes, so I’m very excited to see what people will come up with. But for the first one, I figured I’ll start very simple.

THEME: Yellow
(here’s a little something to get you seeing yellow)

– Be creative! Think outside of the box. Use different angles. Just before you take the picture, think what would make the image stand out more.
– Focus on the theme. Take the picture in a way that the theme ‘jumps out’ at you (blatantly, or creatively).
– Images must be taken by you (do not submit images that are not yours…that’s just wrong).
– There is no limit to the number of images a person can submit (this might change in the future…but for now, just shoot and send!)
– Images can have basic adjustments (exposure, crop, white balance, highlight/shadows, contrast) using photoshop or your favorite image editor, but should not be drastically edited (it shouldn’t look “photoshopped”). We want to show our visions before we press the shutter, not after we sit at the computer!

– All images should be re-sized to have a maximum length of 500 pixels. (I don’t need your full-resolution images, we’re just posting them online). I’ll post directions below.
– Please do not place any sort of watermark on your images. I will provide credit and link back to you with your information presented, but I’d like to keep the individual images as pure as possible when I receive it.
– E-mail all images to [email protected] , with the month submitted for somewhere in the subject (ie. “March Photo Challenge”).
– Please include the following information in your e-mail:

  • Your name (and whether you would like me to post your it or not)
  • Your website/blog (for me to link back to)
  • Title of your image (if you have one)
  • Vision with the image (why did you take this picture the way that you did?)

And that’s that! Just get creative, and open your eyes to the world around you. Like I said, think outside the box. Take a couple ‘safe’ shots (things that obviously fall under the category of “yellow”) and then push the envelope a bit. I know my blog readers can be an artistic bunch if you try, so go! Let me know if you have any questions on the challenge, as this is the first one, there will probably be many details to iron out as we get this thing set. For now, just get out there, see reality, and start shooting!

Re-sizing an Image for the web

Photos can be very large in size when taken from the camera, which is great if you want to make a 16×20 canvas, but useless if you’re just e-mailing a picture to friends or posting an image on the blog. Most online photo hosting sites will shrink your images to display properly, but if you shrink it before hand, you can upload faster and upload more! So unless you’re planning on printing it, shrink it. A general rule of thumb would be to have the resolution at 72ppi/dpi for web, and 300ppi/dpi for print. Also, for my challenges, I’d like the images to be no larger that 500pixels on the largest size, because that’s just a good viewable size and easier to deal with. So here’s how you can do that.

In Photoshop:

  • Go to File->Automate->Fit Image, and set both values to 500 pixels.
  • Then go to File->Save As, and save it as a jpg image, at a quality of around 7-8.

Using Picasa:

  • Click Export to Folder
  • Under Image Size, move the slider to set it at 500.

This should shrink your images considerably and make them faster to upload/e-mail.

[You guys interested in photo tips? General photography or post-processing? Let me know and maybe I’ll post things like this more often]