It should not be shocking to hear another story about a police officer wrongly accusing a photographer of breaking the law. These stories have become pretty common place lately. However, recently police in Long Beach California have been reprimanding individuals who have been caught photographing locations with no apparent aesthetic value. Back in June, Long Beach Post contributor Sander Roscoe Wolff was detained after photographing a refinery on North Long Beach. Long Beach Police Chief Jim McDonnell has publicly stated that his officers have the responsibility to detain photographers who are not engaging in “regular tourist behavior”. This story is an unfortunate consequence of the post homeland security world we live in and probably will not be the last infringement on individuals’ rights. To read more about this story, head over to the original article on the Long Beach Post.
If you have followed Fstoppers for any amount of time, you know we are big advocates of photographers having great looking websites. Most photographers love the look of a flash site but more and more companies are starting to offer both flash and HTML versions of their sites. Creative Motion Design has been hard at work creating flashy looking websites that are coded in HTML so your potential clients can check out your work while browsing on their mobile devices and tablet computers. This week CMD released their first fully customizable HTML websites Rosie and Ethan with more designs coming out throughout the rest of 2011. I love the look of Ethan, and the prices on these sites are reasonable especially since CMD’s customer service is leagues above many other website design companies. As soon as Lee and I have some free time, we are planning on converting our sites so they load up easier for potential clients.
If you are planning a behind the scenes video for our 2011 photo contest, you probably also need to setup an interesting interview segment to explain the details of your photoshoot. Most photographers spend a lot of money on their flash equipment but often don’t have much in the way of constant lights. The guys over at SLRlounge have come up with a great BTS video on how you can create an interesting interview set on a budget. In this video, Pye Jirsa used basic work lights mixed with natural ambient light. In our contest video we either shot completely natural light or mixed in some of these inexpensive LED lights to make it a little more interesting. Taking a little bit of time to make your interview footage look good always goes a long way and is often just as fun designing as the actual photoshoot itself.
A few weeks ago Reese Moore interviewed Jimmy Chin for her column the Fstoppers Spotlight. Her Fstoppers interview revealed a lot about what makes Mr. Chin put himself in harms way as he climbs, rappels, and base jumps from assignment to assignment. In this behind the scenes video, Jimmy talks about the changing culture taking place within the sport of extreme rock climbing. He and his fellow climbers explore Yosemite National Park as he captures images for National Geographic. I dabble in climbing and think base jumping would be a huge thrill but I’m not sure I would ever have the guts to even hang with Jimmy for one day if this is his typical photoshoot. Check out 2:40 for some interesting off camera lighting while climbing!
It’s no secret that Lee and I started our photography careers as wedding photographers. Regardless of what anyone says, photographing weddings is an excellent way to sharpen your photography skills since there are so many different types of shots you can plan throughout the day (and make a great living doing it). Usually when you first arrive at a wedding, the first photos your client will probably want you to capture are detail and candid getting ready shots. Superstar wedding photographer Jasmine Star recently released a great video outlining how she approaches these must have shots. If you are a guy then it’s probably great advice hearing this from a female perspective so you know what’s important to capture. And if Jasmine is reading, what’s up with stealing our backgound?
One of the unfortunate problems with running a website is you are inevitably going to send traffic to a misdirected URL or even worse a page that flat out doesn’t exist. You are probably used to seeing pages that look something like this. Well the guys over at Nosh.me came up with a funny little way to track down their own 404 pages and fix the issue or flat out take them down. Check out the final video below and hit the full post to see some BTS on how the guys conceptualized the scenes. If you really enjoy this sort of thing then you will find some really helpful tips about color grading, after effects, and detailed production notes over at the 404 process page. Who knew it was so violent behind each of our websites?
Being a child of 80s and having lived through all of the video game consoles, I really got a kick out of this evolution of games video. Figuring out a clever way to film a scene can be daunting at the least but building an entire video around a single frame can be even tougher. Joe Penna aka MysteryGuitarMan and his friends came together to produce a collaborative video showcasing different video games through the years. It’s creativity like this that we are looking for in your own BTS videos. Click the full post to see the final video.
This week over on the Fstoppers Forum there has been some pretty interesting posts. One that grabbed my attention was made by user Evolize Photog who showed how he photographs luxury cars in motion. In this video Evolize shows how he photoshopped his suction cupped boom arm out of a Lamborghini Gallardo hero shot. This should be great inspiration for our behind the scenes contest we are running the rest of this year. I’m sure a lot of you are like me and have questions about mounting a boom arm, triggering the camera, and positioning the camera for the best angle. These are some of the topics you should consider when making your own BTS video in the future. Do we have any other automotive photographers here on Fstoppers?
Have you ever wondered how DSLR cameras match up when compared to film and high end HD video cameras? Last year, Zacuto brought together some of the biggest names in the movie industry to see how well the first round of video capable DSLRs compared to the industry’s standard film and HD video cameras in The Great Camera Shoot Out of 2010. This year they have started another series which compares some of the top cameras including 35mm Kodak 5213/5219, Arri Alexa, Red One M-X, Phantom Flex, Sony F3, Panasonic AF100, Canon 1D Mark IV, and Nikon D7000 (where is the D3s?), and a bunch of other professional video cameras. The Great Camera Shootout is a must watch if you are a gearhead or simply enjoy seeing how well the current crop of DSLR cameras are at video. It’s pretty amazing to see the consumer Nikon D7000 holds its own against such a competitive group; I can only imagine what the next crop of Nikon cameras is going to do! Check out the trailer below and hit the full post for the first episode that outlines exactly what sort of tests Zacuto is going to run.
Working and operating a Steadicam is tough work. The most ridiculously awesome steadicam shot ever probably proved that without a shadow of a doubt, but we have even more proof! The following video follows steadicam superhero Niclas Närwall as he captures shot after shot on the set of Let’s Dance. If you’ve ever been on a set with one of these guys you know how much stress goes into their whole bodies over the course of a full day (buying them beers afterwards is a given). At least Karsten Jacobsen had a Segway to help give his legs a break! Some of these shots are pretty remarkable and some might go a bit overboard with the floating camera effect. What do you guys think; what is your favorite shot?
Understanding how different sized softboxes work usually requires a bunch of tests or just good ole trial and error. Luckily photographer Jay P Morgan has done all the dirty work for you and shows how different sized Photoflex softboxes create unique spreads and quality of light. I find smaller softboxes are great for location portraits because of their compact size and soft yet edgy light. However you may prefer something larger depending on the specific look you are trying to achieve. If you enjoy Jay’s videos, check out some of his older posts we have featured on Fstoppers.
There is no doubt that the RED’s Epic video camera produces some of the most crisp and surreal footage you are likely to see at a reasonably “budget” price point. Up until now, the only lenses you could use with the Epic had to have the PL lens mount found on cine lenses. Recently, photographer turned videographer Vincent Laforet was able to demo the new Canon lens adapter which allows the RED cameras to use most of the EOS mountable lenses. In the video below, Vincent shows what the RED/Canon combo can do out in the field. One particularly interesting combo is the Canon 600mm f/4 L lens mounted with the 2x Canon Teleconverter. Some estimates give this combo a 35mm equivalent of 3400mm with the crop factor but I think it’s actually a bit less than that (the RED should have around a 1.2x crop factor depending on the file output). Either way, the footage is pretty amazing and super exciting if you dream of using RED gear down the road with your existing Canon lenses. Any idea how he shot the video in low light? Looks like the lens would be at least at f8 which is almost unusable in anything but bright light.
Now I’m not exactly sure what the “largest stop motion animation” actually means but there is no doubt this video is pretty spectacular. You may remember Aardman Productions from our post on the world’s smallest stop motion video which is equally as mind blowing. This time they decided to use the beach as their canvas and film the entire animation on a Nokia N8 cell phone.. It’s pretty amazing to think how much work went into changing each frame on a set this large especially with tourists and tides. Check out the video below and then jump to the full post to watch how they created this clever cell phone commercial.
Within 24 hours of announcing the Fstoppers 2011 Behind The Scenes Video Contest, we were shocked to already have our first submission. Marc Kuyer from Holland had an idea to have small model cars battling each other like they were straight out of Rock and Roll Racing (super cult classic). Marc does a good job outlining his plans and showing you all the photoshopping that went into this final image. Of course we’d love to see everyone on camera but sometimes with language barriers you may have to stick with subtitles and text. So I guess it’s safe to say right now Marc has taken the lead in our contest. If no one else steps up to the plate he will be moving on from small speed lights to a full studio worth of equipment!
A while back we featured a story on a new camera body cap that was designed to protect your DSLR while traveling through the most extreme of circumstances. The LockCircle created a lot of controversy from our readers over both the price and also the size of the cap itself. Well we now have a reason why this body cap is so expensive and know exactly how it works with this amazingly well crafted behind the scenes video. You may scoff at the overall idea of this product but you will no doubt be impressed with the manufacturing process. I usually leave lenses on my cameras even when traveling but I can see the advantage of something like this for extreme condition photographers who shoot in sandy, snowy, or dusty environments where a loose body cap could cause serious problems during a photo session.