Do you love photography or just enjoy taking pictures, but feel like pricey cameras are keeping professional-looking photos out of reach? Here are 3 key tips sure to make your holiday photos look top-notch without investing in expensive equipment.
1. Forget the Flash
Ever wonder why throwaway camera pictures have off-kilter coloring? Flash is your culprit!
Unless you’re shooting in the dark, forget it even exists. Keep your camera steady and try to shoot in early morning or early evening light to get the best natural shadows and highlights from your environment. Additionally, if your camera allows it, adjust shutter speed (a.k.a. ISO) to control the amount of light you’re letting in (higher ISO = more light = best for darker environments).
2. Learn The Rule of Thirds
NEVER put your subject in the center of the frame. Instead, picture your camera view as being divided into three sections, and keep your subject in either the left-hand or right-hand third. Also, remember the “halo” rule: make sure to leave space above and around the subject’s head so that they don’t look crammed into the shot.
3. Know Your Angles
America’s Next Top Model contestants aren’t the only ones who need to understand angles. An otherwise-boring shot can be instantly spruced up by changing your perspective.
Want to make your subject look more important and/or taller? Shoot from below. On the flipside, shooting from above can also make a subject look smaller, but slimmer, so a higher perspective might be the answer to soothing subjects with any worries, while also being fabulously spontaneous.
Do you have a unique photo tip to share? Let us know what you do to spruce up your special holiday photos.
Toys R Us Inc. is stepping into the heated tablet-computer wars with a $150 version for kids — including Wi-Fi connectivity, extensive parental control features and 50 pre-loaded apps that include popular games such as “Angry Birds” and “Fruit Ninja.”
But will kids want it and parents buy it? ”You can jam 50 apps into this and make it an overwhelming value,” said toy industry analyst Sean McGowan. “But at the end of the day, kids may decide it’s not cool and it’s either Apple or nothing.”
Some adults are questioning whether kids really need their own simplified — and child-proofed — gizmos.
News of the Toys R Us tablet, named tabeo, comes during a month that’s been filled with new gadget announcements. Amazon.com Inc. unveiled four new versions of its Kindle Fire tablet last week, and Apple Inc. is rumored to announce its own 7-inch mini iPad in the coming weeks. The tabeo tablet will come with nearly 20 pre-loaded game apps, almost 10 educational apps, about a dozen entertainment apps and a few book apps.
Parents can also prevent kids from accessing specific websites or spending 24 hours a day glued to the tablet. Parental controls allow people to set up boundaries for eight users, block 27 content categories and additional sites, and pre-set what days and times users can go on the Web. It runs on Google Inc.’s Android Ice Cream Sandwich operating system.
Tabeo is available for pre-order now and will be sold exclusively by Toys R Us beginning Oct. 21.
Would your kid use a kids-only tablet?
In addition to hosting a “Ready, Set, Engage!” Social Media Basics seminar over the holiday weekend at the 10th Annual AllState Tom Joyner Family Reunion, I also had the opportunity of co-hosting the “Fly On A Dime” Affordable Fashion panel with celebrity stylist Olori Swank & celebrity beauty artist Tia Hebron.
During this panel, several shopping ideas, tips & stories were shared including ways to extend your wardrobe, key pieces that every closet should have & the best time to shop/build your fashion collection.
Did You Know: One of the best times to build your fashion collection is in November? It’s true, the pre-holiday season boasts almost 6% deeper discounts than any other time of the year. (It’s even better than January which only offers average discounts about 4.5% higher.)
The top three “fashion investments” that every woman should invest in includes:
- Leather jacket
- Oversized watch
- Quality Bras & foundation undergarments
- Great pair of black stiletto heels
- Convertible wrap dress
- Statement scarf that you can wear all year long
- Stylish trench coat
- Well-tailored black blazer & slacks
- Waist cinching belt
Did You Know: The worst days of the week to shop online is Saturday & Sunday! According to Consumer Reports, Tuesday is the best day of the week to shop online. Most consumers find discounts exceeding 5% more than the average discounts found other days online.
- Before you shop, make sure you know your body type and what works best for your shape.
- Essence.com has a great tool online – The Fashion Closet that’ll help you out matching designers that specialize in specific body types.
- A great foundation will ensure that you look great all over – so make sure to invest in foundation garments.
- Overall, don’t be afraid to express yourself in fashion but do it wisely.
- Invest minimally in seasonal trends, instead opt for investing in quality staple pieces that you can wear for years to come.
The 10th Annual Allstate Tom Joyner Family Reunion attracts over 14,000 people over the Labor day holiday weekend in Orlando, FL. Filled with celebrity appearances and entertainment for the entire family – you can find out more by visiting http://familyreunion.blackamericaweb.com/ #allstateTJFR
As the tech savvy matriarch of the family, I find it important to keep my nieces & nephews on top of the latest tech trends and new releases. However, I’m still deciding if I’m more of a fan of smartphone/tablet use as entertainment vs education for children – check out a few facts below…
Many parents seem to think gadgets don’t just keep kids occupied — they can also help them grow and learn. 77% of parents think tablets are beneficial to kids, and 77% think they help develop creativity, according to Schools.com’s findings. More than a quarter of parents have downloaded apps for their kids. The top genres? Fun, at 46%; education, at 42%; and creative, at 28%.
Are you a tech-heavy parent raising tech-heavy kids? Do you think smartphones and tablets do more to help or hurt the development of kids today? Sound off below.
Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment has partnered with Taubman Centers to create a groundbreaking new shopping experience for consumers with the installation of Fox Movie Mall virtual storefronts.
With the introduction of the Fox Movie Mall app available at the iTunes Store and Android Market, shoppers at the mall can simply Stop, Scan and Shop, providing convenience and accessibility like never before. An industry first innovation, consumers can pick one of the film titles from a wallscape, scan a QR code and instantly be taken online to make their purchase and have it shipped right to their door. Those that download and launch the Fox Movie Mall app can save up to 50 percent on their purchases and have access to the RIO coloring app, additional games, trailers, movie and TV clips and more.
Participating Taubman shopping centers include Beverly Center, Los Angeles, CA; Cherry Creek Shopping Center, Denver, Colo; Dolphin Mall, Miami, Fla; Fairlane Town Center, Dearborn, Mich.; Fair Oaks Mall, Fairfax, Va.; Great Lakes Crossing Outlets, Auburn Hills, Mich.; International Plaza and Bay Street, Tampa, Fla.; MacArthur Center, Norfolk, Va.; The Mall at Green Hills, Nashville, Tenn.; The Mall at Short Hills, Short Hills, N.J.; The Mall at Wellington Green, Wellington, Fla.; Northlake Mall, Charlotte, N.C.; Stamford Town Center, Stamford, Conn.; Sunvalley Shopping Center, Concord, Calif.; Twelve Oaks Mall, Novi, Mich.; Westfarms Mall, Farmington, Conn.; The Shops at Willow Bend, Plano, Texas and Woodfield Mall, Schaumburg, Ill.
How cool is this? I can’t wait to take my nieces to the mall and have a QR code moment! LOL
Would you use this unique shopping experience to purchase movies for your home entertainment?