Photography – Taming The High-Contrast Lighting

During any photography sessions, we always hope for good weather and lighting. When the sky is dark and gloomy, we pray for just a little light in hope of taking a decent picture. We are almost always delighted when we have a clear daylight with lots of sunshine when we take out our camera. After happily taking the shots we wanted, we realized that why on earth our images look so dark against the beautiful scenery. We can hardly see the faces in the photo. Well, the problem here is contrast. Even if you try to set your DSLD at the lowest contract setting, you still cannot get the details in both the bright light and shadowed areas. Below are two suggested techniques you can try to solve this problem.

Method one is to use a Scrim. What are Scrims? Scrims are panels, which comes with various sizes with a piece of fabric mounted. Some of these panels are collapsible. The fabric can be reflective, translucent, or transparent and can act as reflectors, diffusers or neutral-density filters. Since these scrims are usually light in weight, they can be carried by an assistant or clamped onto a stand.

Due to its light weight, during windy situation, the scrims might flap. How to use a scrim? When you are taking portrait against a bright light backdrop, ask an assistant to hold the scrim at the back of the person, this will ensure that some of the bright light will be filtered off. If you do not know what a Scrim is, please click here [].

Method two is to use your on-camera flash. When I started photography, I always set my flash to auto. And the truth is, the auto-flash never come into action during day light photography session. This is because there are enough light going into the camera. Later on, I was told to manually turn on the flash. I was totally stunt on hearing such advice. Flash light during bright day light? I took a bold step and try it and it work. The flash is necessary to brighten up the area on the face so that you can see the face clearly. With digital camera, you can try this method repeatedly and see the effect.

With the two suggested methods, taming the high-contrast lighting should not be a problem. For the first method, you will need some investment while the second method is free. With digital camera, you can start to do your experimentation. For more information, please visit Freelance Photography.

Making Extra Money With Online Paid Surveys – Tips on Joining Legitimate Survey Panels

How to Make Money Online at Home

This is probably the most commonly asked question on the internet for years. Making money online is probably a misunderstood topic for many people thinking that they must commit long term to see good revenue. This is true if you are selling stuff on eBay, or if you build your own website or start blogging to make money that require investing a lot of time as well as money, patience, passion about the topic, and experience / knowledge of how to bring traffic to your website or blog. It may pay off at the end by generating revenue from Google AdSense, Yahoo! Publisher, Kontera, or other advertisement products. You can also join well known reputable affiliate programs like Amazon, or affiliate networks such as Commission Junction and ShareASale, and advertise their products on your website or blog. Other making money online opportunities that require investing a lot of time is to consider writing articles to sites like Examiner, Associated Contents, HubPages, and Squidoo; or to consider home freelancing to sites such as FreeLancer, iFreeLance, and GoFreeLance.

However, online paid surveys are probably the easiest and the most time effective way of generating extra money online. This can be a side activity that generates a steady income of more than $200 that will definitely help you and your family in the current weak economic conditions. Joining online survey panels do not require any upfront investment, experience, or long-term commitment. Online paid surveys would be an ideal situation for housewives, unemployed people, part-time workers, college students, retirees, or anyone who can commit at least 40 hours per month. However, the internet has hundreds and may be thousands of websites that are actually scams. This article describes some tips and advice on selecting the legitimate survey panels that are right for you and avoiding scams.

How much Money can you make from Online Paid Surveys?

That depends on your free time, survey length and compensation, and your strategies for maximizing your potential earnings. Compensation for taking a survey can range anywhere from $1-$8 or even more depending on the topic, product, or service under evaluation. A survey generally takes around 5-45 minutes to complete, the longer it is the higher is the compensation. Many surveys offer $2 incentive for 20 minutes length which seems to be the standard. You will probably spend 10 minutes to get qualified for a survey, so you can complete two surveys in one hour. Assuming you can commit 60 hours per month, then you can earn about ($2 / survey) x (2 surveys / hour) x (60 hours / month) or an average of $240 per month from the comfort of you home. This figure may increase knowing that some online survey panels pay more than others, and that hot topics such as new technology and internet usually pay an average of $5 for 20 minutes length surveys.

Tips for Joining Online Survey Panels

Tip #1 – Be aware of Scams

  • Many survey websites are scams just to get your information to sell to third parties.
  • You should never pay a fee to join an online survey panel. Most sites that require payment to join are usually scams.
  • Remember that “if it sounds too good to be true, then it probably is a scam”.

Tip #2 – Join Legitimate Survey Panels

  • Join only legitimate online survey panels that pay, and that do not deceive their survey takers. To spot a legitimate survey site, look at their privacy policy and make sure that they will not release your information to a third party.
  • Most respected legitimate survey panels are members of the Council of American Survey Research Organizations, CASRO, which requires members to adhere to the CASRO Code of Standards and Ethics for Survey Research, which is a tough, internationally-cited set of standards that has long been the benchmark for the industry.
  • The CASRO code allows survey panels to ask for personal information such as name, age, marital status, number of children, address, annual income, hobbies, etc., in order to build a database of people and their demographic information, so that they can match potential survey takers with the product or service being under evaluation or study. However, the code requires survey panels to keep personal information strictly confidential.
  • Other survey panels adheres to the principles set forth in the Safe Harbor framework as established by the United States Department of Commerce regarding the collection, use, and retention of personal data provided from the European Union.
  • Legitimate survey panels will never ask you to purchase a product, service, or a trial offer that requires using your credit card.
  • Legitimate survey panels will never ask you to provide your credit card or bank account information, Social Security number, or your PayPal password. They will never try to recruit you via unsolicited e-mail or pop-up ads with survey questions. They will never contact or seek personal information from your children under 13, or ask them to take an online survey without your prior consent.

Tip #3 – Use a Separate Email Account

  • Do not use your personal or business email accounts when signing up for online survey sites.
  • Use a separate email address specifically for taking online surveys.

Tip #4 – Add Panel Email Address to your Safe Sender List

  • You may not be getting survey invitations in your Inbox folder as your email provider filter may be flagging them as Spam and deleting them, or moving them to your Bulk or Junk folders.
  • To ensure that you receive all survey invitations, add the email addresses of all survey panels to your list of trusted senders, address book, or contact list.

Concluding Remark

Taking online paid surveys can be a side activity that generates a steady monthly income if you can commit 40-60 hours per month earning $200-$300 at the comfort of your home. The internet has hundreds of websites that are actually scams which charge you a fee to send you a list of survey panels or sell your information to third parties. However, you can join top online survey panels listed on free websites reviewing legitimate panels.

Where to Find Private Clients to Write For?

Online freelance writers spend many hours writing for money on content sites like Demand Studios, Associated Content, Hub Pages and a list of other sites. Although some sites like Demand Studios pay decent, you still need to write quite a few articles to make ends meet each month if you are not writing articles to market products. Freelance writers must be constantly looking for private online clients to add to their writing business. Private clients pay much better per article and are often much easier to write for. But finding private clients can sometimes be frustrating. Let’s look at some of the places we can find private clients on a regular basis.

Create Your Own Website

One thing you should do as a freelance writer is to create your own website or blog. I am not talking about a free service here either. Spend a little bit of money ($20 average) to secure a domain name and get a host. I use for all of my sites. A domain name runs you about $10 a year and hosting averages $8 a month. Create a site advertising the fact that you are a freelance writer. Put some of your best work on the site to showcase your talents. Put a link to your website in your email and forum signatures. Let people know that you are a freelance writer for hire.

When you place your work on your site, instead of sending prospective client “free” samples you can just refer them to your site. By paying for hosting and getting your own domain name you reflect a more professional appearance. I’ll even create a link for freelance writers here on our blog as extra advertising. Just send an email with your link.:)

Join Forums

Make it a habit to join and contribute to forums in your expertise of writing or marketing forums. Website owners and bloggers are constantly looking for freelance writers. When you join a forum, go directly to the user control panel and set your profile up. Place a nice picture as your avatar. Include your name and a link to your website. Maybe even place in”Writer For Hire” or “Freelance Writer” under your signature. Then hit the newbie welcome board. Tell them who you are and what you do. Be friendly and don’t try to sell your services. Your signature will do all the selling you need to do.

Participate in the forum on a regular basis. Don’t spam the forum but offer helpful advice, ask a question or elaborate on a previous poster’s statement. The point is to be an active, contributing member. My advice is to make it a daily habit to join at least 2 forums a week and participate in each one at least once a day. Marketers and bloggers will see your signature and see the responses you have on the forum. This will bring you many clients long term.

Search Craigslist

Despite the horror stories you may have heard, Craigslist is still a lucrative place to find private clients when you are writing for money. Just like in forums, website owners and bloggers are constantly advertising the need for freelance writers. Some pay well, others not so well. But if you take one that pays not so well, continue to put in your best effort. The reason is because people talk, and word of mouth advertising can make or break your freelance writing career.

Stay away from postings that do not offer pay or who ask for “free” samples. There is no need in giving away your hard work. If someone asks for free samples, refer them to your website. Be choosy but don’t be so choosy that you turn down every offer out there. Sometimes we gotta take the small bills to make the big bills.