I'm not one prone to hyperbole. I don't easily get caught up in gear hype. However, I can whole-heartedly say that my decision to purchase and shoot with a little army of film point and shoot cameras early last year was easily the best decision I made for both my personal work and my own growth as a photographer. When I say that picking up a $20 camera will change your life and your photographs, I mean it – and other photographers agree!
Ornana Films is a small production company based in San Rafael that is no stranger to awards. They took home the Jury Award at the SXSW film festival in 2012 for their short "(notes on) Biology" which continued on to win several other awards that same year, including Exceptional Short at Santa Fe Independent and the Grand Jury Prize at FFF. Two years later at SXSW, they premiered their latest short "Confusion Through Sand" to much acclaim. Now, after a year of waiting, the hand-drawn masterpiece is online for free along with a behind-the-scenes video documenting the work that went into this brilliant animated short.
In late 2014 at an auction in Ohio, Levi Bettweiser of the Rescued Film Project, stumbled upon one of his greatest finds. Up for bid were 31 rolls of 70 year old undeveloped film from World War 2 shot by an unknown soldier and photographer. The Rescued Film Project is an effort to find and salvage undeveloped film from as early as the 1930's. They strive to recover even those films which are damaged by age or the elements, as in the case of this large find of film from WW2.
Willow Creek is what Sven Dreesbach calls a “proof of concept and workflow” for an eventual surf film he’d like to make – but, as it stands, it’s a short film that achieves a lot in its own right. Shot with an iPhone 5s and color-graded using Davinci Resolve, Dreesbach produced a very moving piece of cinema that has an erie but mystical vibe to it - thanks in part to the Ry X track Shortline accompanying the film. Sven was gracious enough to talk with Fstoppers a bit about the hows and whys behind crafting this stunning short film.
Heath Bennett, half of the Chattanooga, Tenn.-based wedding photography duo Jac and Heath Photography, is an absolutely avid film shooter. Recently he shared some work he shot while visiting friends and family in Alaska, much of which was photographed while flying high above the landscape in a helicopter. He was kind enough to sit down for a brief interview and supply the images to us before jetting off to Australia for his and Jac's next adventure.
Fred Mortagne, or French Fred, is a skateboarder, photographer, and filmmaker living in France. His images have taken skateboard photography to a place where the line between fine art, portraiture and action sports have beautifully dissolved into amazing works of art. As someone who shares a lot of the same passion for actions sports and black and white photography, I decided to get in touch with Fred to ask him a few questions about his work.
I don't know how I ran into this here on the eve of 2015, but I am glad I did. Product photography has never been particularly easy to do well, and I love being reminded of the fact that it used to all be done without extensive use of Adobe Photoshop CC14. These images, shot by Kim David McNeill Simmons for toymaker Kenner between 1977 and 1985, showcase basically my childhood: Star Wars toys.
Last week saw the release of ‘Anomaly’, a film that is redefining the approach and model for independent, narrative film making. Co-Director Salomon Ligthelm outlines how he managed the project as it grew from “a 2 minute art film” into the astonishing 38 minute-long final masterpiece, and provides key takeaways for all of us that we can apply to our own stills or motion projects. If you have any interest in what's coming over the horizon for cutting edge, independent, visual media production, this is for you.
For the last 2 years I've made my living shooting architecture with DSLRs, mostly short videos of California's fanciest multifamily apartment communities. When my client Synergy Corporate Housing asked me to continue that mission with all of their international properties in 10 major cities across 8 European countries, the first thing I thought when I saw the 32-day itinerary was, "bring a Hasselblad."
Whether or not you knew it, you have most likely viewed a short film by Adam Pesapane, better known as PES. The director and animator has released several immensely popular stop-motion shorts, directed numerous commercials for major companies such as PlayStation, Scrabble, and Bacardi, and has even been nominated for an Academy Award. Along with the release of his newest short, "Submarine Sandwich," PES and Nikon Cinema have teamed up to bring you a rather comprehensive behind-the-scenes look into the process that goes into the making of PES’ films.
For many of us who have been photographers for a decade plus, we learned about the history of photography either through tattered books from the library, in school while earning a fine art degree, or just by picking up small tidbits here and there as we met other photographers. Thankfully, that has all changed now. With much appreciation to the George Eastman House, we can now find a wealth of fascinating information about the traveled photographic process online.
These days it's hard to come by a fashion shoot that's not shot with a digital camera. That's why when Fstoppers discovered on a Facebook Film Shooters group that Indonesian based photographers Wirawan Sanjaya and partner Gaillard Mathieu had convinced the editors at Bazaar Magazine to allow him to shoot the entire editorial on film, we just had to reach out! The stakes were high, but his results were stunning.
Growing up, I have been entranced by Jackie Chan films for their insane stunts, beautifully choreographed action sequences and hilarious physical comedy. His action scenes are both visually stunning and involving, playing underdog characters fighting against impossible odds. Chan’s dedication to his craft is unquestionable but perhaps he has not been given enough credit as an action director. In this video, filmmaker Tony Zhou breaks down the framing and editing techniques that Hong Kong directors use to create engaging fighting scenes, highlighting how many of these techniques are absent in Hollywood films of today. If you are interested in becoming a filmmaker, you need to watch this.
As part of Universal’s 100th anniversary, a team of restoration experts took on the task of digitally remastering the classic film “Jaws.” The fully restored feature required intense labor from colorists, digital artists, audio engineers, preservation experts, and everyone in between. In this fascinating documentary, we get a look at all the various complex efforts taken in order to bring the ‘70s blockbuster in to the digital age.