DaveAyerstDavies's avatar


1.7K Watchers202.5K Page Views137 Deviations
1 min read
When I first joined dA, my deviations attracted almost as many comments as favs. As time has gone on, the habit of leaving comments has dropped off considerably. These days I'm lucky to see one comment for twenty favs.


If you do like a picture enough to add it to your favourites, please also leave a comment so I know what you liked about it.
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28 votes
I am an artist and I would like the option of making thumbnails private.
I am an artist and I would deny the option of making thumbnails private. (If you select this answer, please explain your objection in a comment)
I am a collector and I support the option of making thumbnails private.
I am a collector and I oppose the option of making thumbnails private.
I don't mind either way.
I don't understand, even after reading the journal.
Other - (please comment)
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4 min read

Many of my images include an element of nudity. Fortunately dA has a very liberal policy on nudity and sexually themed deviations. The problem arises when one of my artistic and carefully crafted images appears embedded in (for instance) a collection of crude self-shot close-ups of genitalia. Currently that collection and my image within it would be visible to all. I would like to have an element of control over my work being included in a collection I would rather not be associated with.
I feel so strongly about this issue that, if not resolved, I will have take the only course of action open to me, and remove all my pictures from deviantART.

Here is my suggestion for a way to solve of this problem.

Can we please have a check box on submitting each deviation that, when checked makes the thumbnail visible to anyone when viewed on the artist's own gallery, but in another deviant's favourites or collection, only to the owner of the collection (and the owner of the devaition) can see it?

This 'private thumbnail' function would be to allow artists to control (allow / deny) the appearance of their work in other deviants 'collections' without interfering with the ability of collectors to collect, as the 'private' thumbnail of the fav WOULD be visible in the collection to the deviant who collected it, just not to anyone else. Of course, if the 'private' box is left clear, current normal dA functionality still applies.

For clarity, here is a table of who sees what.

'Public' Thumbnail in a collection.
Visible to - Owner of the collection + Owner of the deviation + Everyone else

'Private' Thumbnail in a collection
Visible to - Owner of the collection + Owner of the deviation

('Collection' in the context above refers to a collection not created by the original owner of the deviation)

What the 'private thumb' feature would do is allow collectors to collect and view their collection in it's entirety, but other deviants would not see the thumbnail of any deviations that  have been marked as 'private' by the artist, just a place-holder icon.

An extension of this idea would be to allow your 'Friends' to publicly collect your 'private' deviations, as they are trusted not to put them alongside images you would not want to be associated with.

In that case the visibility matrix would look like this;

'Public' Thumbnail
Visible to - All deviants

'Private' Thumbnail in a gallery or collection of the owning artist, or in a collection created by a 'Friend' of the owning deviant
Visible to - All deviants

'Private' Thumbnail in a collection or a favourites list of a deviant who is not a 'Friend' of the owner.
Visible to - Only the creator of the collection and the owner of the deviation.

I know I'm not the only person to want such a simple element of control.

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5 min read

Capturing subjects in motion.

Ten random tips for getting better results with 'action' photography.

1. If your subject is moving and your intention is that the subject is sharp in your picture, putting the camera on a tripod is a bad idea.

2. There are only two ways to capture a moving target; panning/following the subject, and maximising shutter speed. (Using flash is essentially the same as raising the shutter speed.)

3. If you use flash to arrest movement, make sure that the contribution from the flash is significantly greater than ambient light, and don't try to use shutter speed AND flash at the same time or you'll run into synchronisation problems.

4. Blurry can be beautiful, so don't delete 'failures' in camera. They may be buried treasure when you see them full size.

5. When you are panning to freeze a subject, make sure you 'follow through' like a golf stroke, and make sure your stance is comfortable.

6. Panning/tracking at low shutter speeds will give you pictures that have a greater sense of movement, but don't be dismayed if you only end up with a small percentage of usable images. Even professionals don't have a 100% hit rate.

7. Remember that studio strobes can have quite long 'on time' compared with on-camera flash, so you can't always count on them to give you a crisp result with a fast moving subject unless you back them off a bit to maybe as little as 25% of maximum.

8. In addition to (7), studio strobes also recycle more quickly and overheat less often when running at lower power. If you have a model jumping around in a floaty dress you may need to take a LOT of pictures to be sure of a winner.

9. At sports events, always get a few shots at a reasonably fast shutter speed 'in the bank' before you start getting creative with 1/60 and below. You don't want to risk going away completely empty-handed.

10. Shooting movement means that you will almost certainly be shooting either full manual exposure or shutter priority auto.

Finally... A bonus tip:  Sports photographers use monopods because 'pro' 500 and 600mm lenses are big and heavy. If you can comfortably hand-hold your lens, then do it. You will have more freedom of movement and will be able to pan/follow much better. Putting a monopod on something like a 200mm f/4 is worse than pointless for sports photography. All it does is restrict movement and get in the way. I hand-hold my 500mm quite often for difficult shots, but it is too heavy to hold for long periods.

Night at Le Mans 2011 by DaveAyerstDavies

Audi R18  at Le Mans 2011 by DaveAyerstDavies Le Mans Start by DaveAyerstDavies

Macabre Mud by DaveAyerstDavies :thumb123758002:

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3 min read
Ten tips for better composition (not in any particular order of importance).

1. Avoid 'centre fixation', in other words, don't always put the subject (or the area of interest) plumb in the centre of the picture. Familiarise yourself with 'the rule of thirds'.

2. Keep your horizons horizontal. Many beginners (and even some more experienced photographers) seem to have a permanent slight tilt in almost every shot.

3. Don't always shoot from a standing position, and keep in mind that very small changes in camera position can make a big difference to a composition.

4. Turn the camera 90 degrees and shoot one or two 'portrait' frames, even when it is not strictly a 'portrait' shot, and vice versa.

5. Take as much care with the edges of the frame as you do with placing the subject, and always include a little more in the picture than you need to allow for a small crop-down or adjustment of aspect ratio.

6. Don't always try to maximise depth of field and sharpness. Putting a background out of focus or motion-blurred can draw the eye to the subject, even if the subject is small in the frame.

7. Keep it clean and simple. Avoid crowding your image with distracting or irrelevant objects. This is particularly important for stock images.

8. Keep in mind these two questions before you shoot: What does this picture say? What is this a picture of?  Seems obvious but it is well worth remembering. If you are finding difficulty in coming up with a name for an image, it is probably because you don't have an answer to one or both of those questions.

9. Balance your composition, and remember that moving subjects need 'empty' space ahead of them.

10. You have to know the rules of composition before you can break them effectively.

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Please comment when you 'fav' pictures. by DaveAyerstDavies, journal

The problem with favs and collections... by DaveAyerstDavies, journal

Notes to aspiring photographers 4 by DaveAyerstDavies, journal

Notes to aspiring photographers 3 by DaveAyerstDavies, journal

Notes to aspiring photographers 2 by DaveAyerstDavies, journal