ACD Systems Blog

Take Your Time

2015-02-03 00:08:14 GMT

It had become second nature to pull out my phone or DSLR and snap a quick pic of a sunset, a hug between friends, a striking landscape. However, due to the rapidness that I captured these images, they diminished not only quality, but also significance.

My computer folders were packed with hundreds of photos that had no real meaning to me, and were subpar images, at best. Because of the overwhelming amount of files, I overlooked those that had actual photographic value — it took so long to scour through the mess, that I usually gave up before I started.

Sound familiar?

Sometimes improving your photography skills doesn’t take a new lense or hours of practice, but rather taking time to observe, shoot, and appreciate the subject of your photo.

Maybe 2015 is the year that you organize those folders, and eliminate any undesirable images. Proper digital image management in the present could save you hours of frustration in the future.

When it comes to shooting your photographs, choose quality over quantity. Dedicate time to seeking out the scene you want to capture, and don’t settle for mediocre. Once you have your images, don’t be afraid to play with them — edit and tweak until you’re in love with the result.

Slow down, press pause, and spend some quality time with your camera and software.


Try ACDSee Ultimate 8 for the latest in digital image management and layered editing.


Show Off Your Photos With A Desktop Slideshow!

2013-09-12 22:14:37 GMT

Let’s say you’re crazy busy working away at your computer, and you feel like you need a little visual pick-me-up or a quick distraction. Why not set up a little slideshow to appear in the corner of your screen that doesn’t take you away from your work?

Here’s how with ACDSee 16:

  1. In Manage mode, navigate to a folder containing images that you want to add to the desktop slideshow.
  2. Do one of the following:

  • Click Tools | Create | ACDSee Showroom.
  • Click Start | Programs | ACD Systems | ACDSee Showroom.

The slideshow starts immediately and the ACDSee Showroom icon appears in the taskbar.

It’s almost as easy as that! Did you notice all the controls in the Showroom? There are a number of slideshow controls in the ACDSee Showroom window:

Using the ACDSee Showroom Slideshow Controls:

  • Click the Back or Forward buttons to display the previous or next photos in the slideshow.
  • Click the Pause button to pause the slideshow while a particular photo is displayed.

Note: If you cannot see these slideshow controls in the ACDSee Showroom window, click anywhere in the window. The controls disappear while the slideshow is playing so you can fully enjoy your photos.

Do you have a lot of photos and want to create multiple slideshows?

To Create More Than One ACDSee Showroom:

With ACDSee Showroom open, do one of the following:

  • Click Close in the ACDSee Showroom window.
  • Click the ACDSee Showroom icon in the taskbar and select Exit ACDSee Showroom.

Note: If you have configured ACDSee Showroom to open when you start your computer, it will automatically open the next time you start your computer.

Another cool thing about the ACDSee Showroom window, is that is goes transparent when the mouse is not hovering over it. Keeping your desktop icons or other windows still slightly visible underneath.


Our Favorite Photography Inspiration Blogs

2013-08-13 19:32:00 GMT

As a photographer you often find yourself looking for ways to expand your portfolio or looking for a new style of photography to experiment with. Sometimes you might just be looking for new ways of posing, or subject matter, or perspective. Well, look no further! We have searched the internet and found five of our favorite photography inspiration blogs. Check them out and we guarantee you’ll find something to be inspired by.

Photography Blogger is a creative, inspirational photo blog featuring a variety of photography subjects, inspirations, and photographers.

The Photo Argus is a resource for photographers novice to advanced. Here you’ll find inspiration, photographer showcases and more.

Pinterest is an inspiration hotspot! There are probably millions of photography inspiration boards for your finding. Feel free to check out ours!

Photodonuts Photography Inspiration is your daily dose of photography inspiration. All the different styles of photography are featured.

The Inspiration Grid brings you the best creative stories from around the globe. Be sure to check out their photography inspiration page for some unique photo ideas.


Making the Most of Your Vacation Photos

2013-01-29 20:30:00 GMT

Escaping the cold and heading south for winter vacation usually means beaches, warm weather and beautiful scenery. Well, now that you’re home and all unpacked it’s time to upload all the wonderful memories you’ve captured on camera, but instead you find a bunch of underexposed, possibly blurry or grainy, poorly framed pictures that say “my vacation was mediocre”.

Here are a few quick tips that even the most amateur photographer can do to turn those “mediocre” photos into masterpieces to share with your friends making them jealous of your amazing travels!

Remember that rule of thirds? Guess you forgot about it with all the excitement going on around you when you took that photo. That’s where cropping can come in handy. Too much foreground in your sunset photo? Crop it! Is that statue dead center? Make it more visually appealing by … you guessed it, cropping it! Is your kid making an unforgettable face? Crop your photo to feature just him!


The crop tool is simple, but gives you endless opportunities to creating exciting photo’s, don’t be afraid to use it.

Turns out the lighting of that fancy restaurant you went to on the first night of vacation, wasn’t as bright as you thought it was. Or the sun was in your face when you took picture at the beach. That’s ok, that can be easily fixed during post production.

In ACDSee Pro 6 the exposure/lighting functions in edit mode will be your best friend in these situations. Adjusting the contrast of your photos will lighten the shadows or darken the bright sun spots making your subjects the main focus of your photo.

Stumble across a couple grainy photos? Maybe they are a few pictures taken on your phone? Either way they can be saved with noise reduction. This feature will save as much edge detail as possible while smoothing out and giving you more natural results.


Tell Your Story
This is the fun part! There are so may different ways to show off you vacation. A few simple, yet creative, to do this include: building a collage, creating a slide show and uploading them all to an album.

For ACDSee Pro 6 tutorials click here.
For ACDSee 15 tutorials click here.


13 Must-Haves for Your Next Photo Shoot

2012-12-10 21:41:43 GMT

In order to take amazing photos, there are some things you will need in addition to your camera and memory card. But there are also some items you will need in case things go awry. Going out to shoot while ill-equipped can result in disappointment and wasted opportunities. So, here are some suggestions to help you make the most of your time in the field:


  • Extra Batteries
    It may seem obvious, but, remarkably, a spare battery is often overlooked by the budding photographer. And yet it quickly becomes seen as a life-saver and conceivably impossible to live without. However, it is possible to find a back-up battery for cheap by forgetting about brand names. With the model number of the battery that came with your camera on hand, research online to find out which backup battery is best via consumer reviews. Likely, you can find a suitable alternative for half the cost of a brand name equivalent.

  • Extra Memory Cards
    Consistently, when you run out of room on your memory card, you will see the best shot of the day. Sometimes this sends you frantically scanning through your shots, looking for ones you can part with. And, really, can you even judge them properly on the little LCD screen? This frustration is highly avoidable. Always carrying an extra memory card or two will save you from having to make the tough choices out in the field.

  • External Hard Drive
    Digital SLRs go hand in hand with large file types, particularly if you are shooting in the RAW or in (beautiful) high-resolution. Frankly, you’re going to need the space of an external hard drive. Beautiful photos take up lots of space. Investing in an external hard drive will save you from slowing down your computer and possibly having to face parting with shots when you’re trying to make space down the road. Once that’s set up, make sure you establish a system for organizing and cataloguing your images immediately. Being organized from the start will allow you to work faster and think clearer all the way through your post-processing.


  • UV Filter
    Somewhere between filtering out ultraviolet light and simply protecting the lens from scratches, dust, and dirt, many professional photographers swear by their UV filters. Often it is no more complicated than the simple fact that a scratched UV filter is much cheaper to replace than a scratched lens.

  • Polarizing Filter
    For outdoor photography, packing this filter removes many lighting and weather-related restrictions. This helps to cut glare from the sun and off reflections and assists in increasing color saturation.

  • Cleaning Kit
    You will exponentially increase the lifespan of your gear by keeping it clean. Keep on hand a microfiber lens cloth for wiping smudges, like fingerprints, off your lens before shooting and keeping your LCD screen clear. (Or, for precise lens cleaning, consider a lens pen.) Also, when wiping isn’t the answer, you’ll want to have a dust-blower for blowing off dust and dirt.

  • Camera Case
    A good bag is necessary to both protect your camera and to offer you convenience as you cart around the rest of your gear. The best choice is one that is water-resistant and contains lots of padding and protection. It should be sturdy and have plenty of pockets and compartments for your bits and pieces.

  • Tripod
    Whether a heavy duty professional variety or a make-shift homemade version – the tripod is hard to live without. It’s essential in situations when capturing neat, focused photos, long exposures, portraits (particularly self-), or when shooting in low lighting. The best tripod is going to be light, tall, and durable. In a pinch, a mini tripod will get the job done and will fold up and fit nicely into your camera bag.

In the Field

  • Rain Gear
    Outside of the annoyance of getting nice and drenched, your camera needs protection from water. Always keep a rain sleeve, plastic bags, and rubber bands to keep your gear dry in your bag. In a pinch, even a shower cap can work. These simple precautions will allow you to keep shooting, even when the clouds open up.

  • Protection
    It can be a good idea to invest in a bag lock. You never know where you’ll have to put down your camera bag and who might be lurking about, looking for an opportunity to make off with your expensive bits and pieces.

  • Pen and Notebook
    There is nothing more frustrating than having nowhere to note down the details you know you’ll forget. Whether an idea for a shot, notes about location or subjects, recording your settings or anything else that comes up, you’ll be glad you kept a small notebook and pen nearby.

  • Flashlight
    As the light goes down low, you’ll find a flashlight not only useful for finding that tool you really need, buried in the bottom of your bag, but also for creating neat lighting effects and patterns in your shots. Experiment! Also, the practical insider will tell you the value of a little LED headlamp for hands-free configuring of your camera controls.

  • Mirror
    An acrylic mirror is lightweight and cheap, and will serve as a super handy reflector for deep shadows, portraits, or outdoor shots. This simple tool opens up all kinds of shooting possibilities!