Patrick Hall

Co-Founder http://www.patrickhallweddings.com +Patrick Hall@phfactorblogFacebook
I'm a full time professional photographer based out of Charleston, SC. Most of my time is filled shooting weddings and commercial work throughout the east coast. When I'm not shooting or managing Fstoppers, I enjoy playing on the boat, cycling, loud amps and classic guitars, attending church, traveling, and planning the next creative adventure.

In The Future, Nothing Will Be Real

This video is already a year old but that doesn’t mean it’s not worth posting again. I was really impressed with the cinematography work and the amazing detail in the composition…and then I realized it was all completely fake! That’s right, Alex Roman doesn’t create that horrible Transformers CGI; his computer graphic designs are true works of art. Click the full post to see a breakdown on how this was designed as well as Alex’s latest creation which features more “organic” material. If you are young and want to retire early, learn how to create this ASAP!

The Third & The Seventh from Alex Roman on Vimeo.

November Contest: Win a Photoflex MultiDisc Kit

If you haven’t participated in our monthly Fstoppers Forum Contest, well then you are really missing out. This month’s theme is “Emotion” and from looking at the posts so far the contest is anyone’s game. I know our readers have some good emotional images; let’s see them! The winner of this month’s contest is going to win a Photoflex Multidisc Kit which is really useful when you need extra fill or perhaps some shade from the sun. We use these all the time with video and it’s nice having the reflector grip to firmly hold everything in place. You also get your image and website at the top of our site for a month. So head over to the Forum Contest Thread and post your best “Emotion” photo.

For All the Drifting Fans: The Audi R8 V10 Commercial

From reading the posts over at the Fstoppers Forum, I’ve found that a lot of our readers enjoy taking photographs at motorsport drifting events. So if you enjoy fast cars and adrenaline you are going to love the commercial Audi created for their new 2010 R8 V10 sports car. This is all video but you can imagine what the results would be if you could mount a still camera on these cranes and drag that shutter. Big thanks to Dragos for sending us this video (check out his work in this field); makes me want to buy a new car :)

How To Win A Free iPad

So you’ve seen the video on how to tether your iPad to your DSLR camera, and you heard the announcement from Lee that we are giving away an Apple iPad in December. So what do you have to do to win the iPad for yourself? It’s really easy: just follow us on twitter and send out one tweet about Fstoppers. That’s it; plain and simple! On December 15th we will pick a random user from the previous 30 days and Christmas will come 10 days early :) Feel free to share this video explaining the rules to your friends and check out the BTS video at the end showing how we used an entry level camera, a photoflex reflector, one prime lens, and an iPhone to film the most basic fstoppers video yet (and the first one in 1080). Due to mail/customs issues, this contest is only open to US and Canada residence. Don’t worry, we will be doing a big world wide contest again very soon.


Fstoppers is Giving Away an Apple Ipad from FStoppers on Vimeo.

Batelco Creates One Heck of an Ad

Fstoppers reader Marcin from Poland sent me an email with one of the coolest BTS videos I’ve seen in a while. If you were like me, you might not have heard of Batelco before. Batelco is a major telecommunications company based out of Bahrain. I’ve never seen such an elaborate commercial for a telecommunications commercial before, and with a budget of 1 million dollars and a production time frame of over a year it might be a while until someone outshines this ad. I’ve attached the first trailer here on the front page but be sure to hit the full post for a second trailer and a nice behind the scenes video. If you want even more super in depth BTS footage from this commercial check out the Batelco Facebook Page where they discuss each individual segment in great detail.

Want to Help Fstoppers? Update Your RSS Feed!

One of the joys of running a site like Fstoppers as a full time photographer is learning all the little tricks that helps make a high traffic site run smoothly. We recently ran a poll to see how often our readers were visiting our site, and we were shocked to learn how many of you are staying updated through our RSS feed. We were also shocked by the amount of emails we received from readers who were having problems with their feed. Long story short, we updated the RSS feed a few times and 90% of our readers are subscribed to our initial feed which is bogging down our server, a few are subscribed to a feed that is not sending out every post, and if you recently found Fstoppers you are probably subscribed to the current feed we just launched 10 days ago. So in an effort to standardize everything and help relieve stress on our server we’d appreciate it if you could follow the Updated Fstoppers RSS Feed located on the top of the site. If you have to type in the link into your reader it is http://feeds.feedburner.com/fstoppersfeed

Brian Skerry Becomes One With the Ocean

As a commercial wedding photographer, I know very little about how to take compelling underwater images. Luckily underwater photographer Brian Skerry and National Geographic have shared this short BTS video on what it’s like diving with fish and swimming over coral reefs. I think it’s interesting how simple but necessary the lighting setup is for this field of photography; most of us “land photographer” probably take for granted the complex lighting setups we can easily construct. Most of us also don’t bring “backup gear” to our shoots because we expect our gear to break! Hopefully we will see more videos like this from other underwater photographers.

Harrison Hurwitz Talks Film With Adorama

In an age where digital has all but put film in the grave, commercial and wedding photographer Harrison Hurwitz has continued to build his business around the organic medium. As a young photographer knowing only digital imaging, I always find it interesting and enlightening to hear from the older pros who may have started with film or actually prefer still shooting film. The argument Harrison makes about film already being color corrected resonates well with me since I’m a jpeg shooter and prefer the color/tones my camera burns into the files vs digitally manipulating it. I can only imagine how much more expensive it is to shoot film and pay for the processing/scanning compared to the digital alternative; that aspect I do not miss. Are any of our readers also film shooters who have a perspective on this and if so we’d love to hear from you below.

Maybe You Only Need 1 Light

So many times we photographers think we need to use every single strobe light we own just because they are there in our bag. I’ve been a victim of it and I’m sure you have too. Instructional photographer Tony Corbell has an old video he made for the folks at Profoto which really showcases the variety of light you can get from just one single light source. There is an old saying that goes the best light is the light you have with you but maybe it should go the best light is sometimes the simplest light.

Rebates Rebates Rebates

Camera and Video equipment is expensive! Whether you are just getting into digital media or are a seasoned professional, we are all looking for bargains and ways to justify dropping even more coin on photography gear. Everyday our email is full of readers asking about what gear we use/recommend and if there are any deals out there to be had. So we have created an Fstoppers Gear Guide that includes every piece of equipment we use for both photos and video separated into categories. You can also check out the latest Canon rebates (most end Jan 8) and Nikon rebates (expires Nov 20) through BHvideo.com which we find to have the best prices online. So check out the Fstoppers Gear Guide and if you want to get some new toys for Christmas, don’t miss out on these Holiday rebates through Nikon and Canon.

How To Shoot Kickass Video From a Helicopter

Adam Boozer is an amazingly talented videographer right here in Charleston, SC. His company Jewell and Ginnie has been making a big splash with very cinematic video here in the low country and throughout the southeast. Last night Adam emailed us a BTS video he created on how he sets up his camera for these incredible aerial shots. Besides having the access to a Robinson R44 Helicopter, the actual setup isn’t that complicated: A Canon 5D MKII, a Zucato Follow Focus, a Marshall Monitor, and the piece that stabilizes it all together, the Tyler Mini Gyro. I’ve posted the highlight reel here so click the full post to see the BTS video on how Adam is getting these shots!

J&G 2010 Aerial Selects Reel from Jewell&Ginnie on Vimeo.

Joseph Anthony Baker Photographs Taylor Swift

Some musicians release a new album with a mediocre cd booklet or no booklet at all. But when country star Taylor Swift releases an album she sets out to create photographs that depict her songs in cinematic fashion. Taylor and Nashville musician photographer Joseph Anthony Baker work together to create very stylized sets which are often as tongue-in-cheek as some of the lyrical content in her songs. Shooting these sort of fantasy images requires a lot of art direction and a mastery of set design and elaborate lighting but the results are truly amazing! Click the full post for part 2 of the series (part 3 requires a comcast login) and head over to Taylor’s website to see the final images.

Elections Are Fun!

If you live in the United States then there was a good chance you just skipped watching TV last night because of all the crazy election coverage. Even though I personally don’t care to watch nonstop election coverage, I do have a huge appreciation for the amount of production that goes into bringing such a massive event into the homes of Americans. If television production is of interest to you, check out this behind the scenes video of Shepard Smith as he gives you a short tour of the control room and stage setup for the 2010 midterm election coverage at Fox News.

And The October FS Forum Contest Winner Is…

Congratulations to Justin Trapp for winning the Sports Themed October Fstoppers Forum Contest! Each month we host a photo contest over at FstoppersForum.com where the winner gets their photography on the top banner of Fstoppers.com as well as a nice piece of lighting equipment from the good folks at Photoflex. This month Photoflex is giving away an OctoDome: Extra Small Basic Kit.

If you win you will also get to pick the theme for the next month’s contest as well as choose the winner. This month Justin will be our guest judge. So if you think you have what it takes to compete, head over to the Contest and post your best EMOTION themed photo.

What Makes A Great Image?

A few editors of National Geographic sat down to talk about a few of their favorite images. What is it that makes an image memorable and interesting? Most everyone said it was something they have never seen before. Some fields of photography don’t have to be ground breaking but if you want to take your own images to the next level try to imagine shooting something you have never seen published before. I’m afraid too many photographers get wrapped up in the lighting, gear, location, and very picky details. Before you even pull out your camera, think to yourself, “what have I not seen done before?” Obviously this video applies mainly to naturally occurring events in nature but I think the same principles can be applied to planned shoots. What do you guys think?

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