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A ShortCourse Book
Canon Powershot G9 Photography

Canon Powershot G9 Photography

Canon Powershot G9 Photography

This clearly written and easy-to understand short course on your Canon Powershot G9 explains step-by-step how, why and when you use your camera's controls for better pictures. This guide is available as a traditional 158 page large-format (8.5 by 11) spiral bound book printed in black and white, and as a full-color, fully searchable PDF eBook you can order on a CD or download instantly. The eBook also includes links to animations and other resources that bring to life the core concepts of digital photography.

 

Introducing Animations

The eBook version of this book has 50 interactive animations that illustrate and explain the core concepts of digital photography. Integrated throughout the eBook, these animations help you understand your camera better, and they are also a lot of fun.

To use the animations you need the eBook version of this book on a CD and an Internet connection.

 
Click to see how every camera is just a black box then minimize or close the animation window.
 
 
Click to see how full color images are created from only three colors then minimize or close the animation window.

Introduction

New, a Short Courses digital photography book for people who want to get better pictures with their Canon Powershot G9 digital camera. This beautifully written and illustrated guide, pulls together answers to the questions you might have about using the G9, including the following:

Contents

Chapter 1
Getting Started with your Canon G9...7

The Powershot G9— An Overview...8
Jump Start— Taking Photos in Auto Mode ...9
Good Things to Know ...10
When Things go Wrong ...12
Using the Monitor ...13
Using Dials and Buttons ...15
  • Top of Camera —15
  • Back of Camera —16
Using Menus ...17
  • Tabbed Menus —17
  • The Function Menu —19
  • Resetting All Settings —20
Managing Images in Review Mode ...21
Managing Images in Playback Mode ...22
  • Jumping To Images —23
  • Erasing and Protecting Images —23
Giving Slide Shows ...24
Using Categories ...26
  • My Categories —26
  • Categorizing a Range of Images —26
  • Auto Category —27
Selecting Image Quality and size ...28
  • Number of Pixels —28
  • How an Image is Captured —30
  • It’s All Black and White After All —30
  • Choosing Image Quality and Size—Still Images —31
  • Choosing Image Size and Frame Rates—Movies —33

Chapter 2
Controlling Exposure...35

Understanding Exposure ...36
The Shutter Controls Light and Motion ...37
The Aperture Controls Light and Depth of Field ...39
Using Shutter Speed and Aperture Together ...41
  • Exposure—Faucets & Buckets Analogy —42
  • Exposure—Seesaw Analogy —43
Retaining Highlight and Shadow Details ...44
Choosing Exposure Modes ...45
Using Image Zone Modes ...46
  • Using Special Scene (SCN) Modes —46
Using Program AE (P) Mode and Program Shift ...48
Using Shutter-Priority (TV) Mode ...49
Using Aperture-Priority (AV) Mode ...50
Using Manual (M) Mode ...51
How your Exposure System Works ...52
Choosing a Metering Method ...54
When Automatic Exposure works well ...55
When to Override Automatic Exposure ...56
  • Scenes Lighter than Middle Gray —56
  • Scenes Darker than Middle Gray —57
  • Subject Against Very Light Background —57
  • Subject Against Very Dark Background —58
  • Scenes with High Contrast —58
  • Hard to Meter Scenes —59
How Overriding AutoExposure Works ...60
How to Override Automatic Exposure ...61
  • Exposure Compensation —61
  • AE Lock —62
  • Autoexposure Bracketing (AEB)—63
  • Using Safety Shift —64
  • Using the Neutral Density Filter —64
Using Histograms ...65
  • Displaying Histograms —65
  • Evaluating Histograms —65
  • Clipped Pixels —67
  • Sample Histograms —68

Chapter 3
Controlling Sharpness...69

Getting Sharper Pictures ...70
  • Using the Self-timer —70
  • Setting the Image Stabilization (IS) Mode —71
  • Changing the ISO —72
  • Auto ISO Shift —73
Sharpness isn't everything ...75
How to Photograph Motion Sharply ...76
  • Speed of Subject —76
  • Direction of Movement —76
  • Distance to Subject and Focal Length of the Lens —77
Focus and Depth of Field ...78
  • Focus —78
  • Depth of Field —78
Focusing Techniques ...80
  • Focusing —80
  • Detecting and Tracking Faces —81
  • Changing the AF Frame Size —82
  • Selecting an AF Mode —82
  • Using Focus Lock and AF Lock (AFL) —83
  • Manual focus —83
  • Bracketing Focus —85
  • Checking the Focus and Peoples’ Expressions in Playback Mode —85
  • Checking the Focus and Expressions in Review Mode —86
  • Focusing Ranges —86
Controlling Depth of Field ...87
Using Maximum Depth of Field ...88
Using Shallow Depth of Field...89
Conveying the Feeling of Motion ...90

Chapter 4
Capturing Light & Color...91

Where does Color come from? ...92
White Balance ...93
Color Balance and Time of Day ...95
Sunsets and Sunrises ...96
Photographing at Night ...98
  • Fireworks —98
  • The Moon —98
Weather ...100
The Direction of Light ...102
The Quality of light ...104

Chapter 5
Understanding Lenses ...105

The Zoom Lens ...106
Normal Zoom ...107
Wide-Angle Zoom ...108
Telephoto and Digital Zoom ...110
Portraits with a Zoom lens ...113
Perspective in a Photograph ...114
Canon Lens Converters ...115
Using Macro Mode ...116
Focusing and Depth of Field Close Up ...117

Chapter 6
Using Flash and Studio Lighting...118

How Automatic Flash Works ...119
  • Flash Falloff —119
  • Flash and Shutter Speeds —119
  • Flash Modes —120
  • Flash FAQs —120
  • Using Safety Fe —120
  • Using a Small External Flash —121
  • Using a Hot Shoe Mounted Speedlite —121
Portraits with Flash ...122
Reducing and Removing Red-Eye ...123
  • Reducing or Eliminating Red-eye —123
  • Removing Red-eye —124
Using Flash On-Fill Flash ...125
Using Available Light ...126
Using Slow Synchro Flash ...127
Controlling Flash Exposures ...129
  • Flash Exposure Lock —129
  • Flash Exposure Compensation —129
  • Flash Modes —130
Studio Lighting ...131
  • Candidates for Studio Lighting —131
  • Lighting —131
  • Backgrounds —133
  • Risers —133
  • Special Bulbs —133
Portrait and Product Photography— Introduction ...134
The Main Light ...135
The Fill Light ...136
The Background Light ...137
The Rim Light ...138

Chapter 7
Special Features...139

Panoramas— Stitch Assist Mode ...140
  • Basic Techniques —140
  • Stitch Assist Mode —141
Using Color Accent And Color Swap ...142
Using My Colors ...143
  • Using My Colors in Shooting Mode—143
  • Using My Colors in Playback Mode—144
Continuous Photography ...145
Capturing Movies ...146
  • Movie Modes —146
  • Movie Recording —146
  • Movie Settings —147
Playing Movies ...148
Editing Movies ...149
Recording Sound ...150
  • Attaching Sound to Images —150
  • Sound Only Recording and Playback —150
Using C1 And C2 Modes ...151
Using The Shortcut Button ...152
Using The My Camera Menu ...153
Using The Set Up Menu ...154
Using The Print Menu ...157


Preface

A great photograph begins when you recognize a great scene or subject. But recognizing a great opportunity isn’t enough to capture it; you also have to be prepared. A large part of being prepared involves understanding your camera well enough to capture what you see. Getting you prepared to see and capture great photographs is what this book is all about. It doesn’t matter if you are taking pictures for business or pleasure, there’s a lot here to help you get better results and more satisfaction from your photography.

To get better, and possibly even great photographs, you need to understand both concepts and procedures; the “whys” and “hows” of photography.

  • Concepts of photography are the underlying principles that apply regardless of the camera you are using. They include such things as how sharpness and exposure affect your images and the way they are perceived by viewers. Understanding concepts answers the “why” kinds of questions you might have about photography.
  • Procedures are those things specific to one kind of camera, and explain step-by-step how you set your camera’s controls to capture an image just the way you want to. Understanding procedures gives you the answers to the “how” kinds of questions you might have.
This book is organized around the concepts of digital photography because that’s how photographers think. You think about scenes and subjects, highlights and shadows, softness and sharpness, color and tone. The procedures you use with the Canon PowerShot G9 camera are integrated throughout the concepts, appearing in those places where they apply. This integrated approach lets you first understand the concepts of photography and then see step by step how to use the G9 in all kinds of photographic situations.

To get more effective, interesting, and creative photographs, you only need to understand how and when to use a few simple features on your camera such as focus, exposure controls, and flash. If you’ve previously avoided understanding these features and the profound impact they can have on your images, you’ll be pleased to know that you can learn them on a weekend. You can then spend the rest of your life marveling at how the infinite variety of combinations make it possible to convey your own personal view of the world. You’ll be ready to keep everything in a scene sharp for maximum detail or to blur it all for an impressionistic portrayal. You’ll be able to get dramatic close-ups, freeze fast action, create wonderful panoramas, and capture the beauty and wonder of rainbows, sunsets, fireworks, and nighttime scenes.

As you explore your camera, be sure to have fun. There are no “rules” or “best” way to make a picture. Great photographs come from using what you know to experiment and try new approaches. Digital cameras make this especially easy because there are no film costs or delays. Every experiment is free and you see the results immediately so you can learn step by step.

This book assumes you’ve mastered the mechanics of your camera. It’s about getting great pictures, not about connecting your camera to computers and using your software. That information is well presented in the user guide that came with your camera. Be sure to visit our Web site at www.shortcourses.com for even more digital photography information.

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