If you’ve ever attended a crazy big music or art festival then the thought has probably crossed your mind, “I should probably photograph these interesting characters while I’m here!” While attending the annual free expression festival Burning Man in Nevada, photographer Eric Schwabel decided to build a portable photo studio to capture dramatic portraits of everyone in attendance. His setup consisted of two strip boxes, two Profoto Pro-B2 power packs, and two Profoto Pro-7 heads. Everything was shot on a Mamiya 645 AFD with a DM28 digital back. I must say, I would be a little nervous bringing this sort of gear out to the dusty desert, but then I would have been the guy who missed out on creating such a cool project!
Thank goodness for the GoPro HD or else this viral video wouldn’t exist. If you are ever near a cliff, make sure yours is recording too.
Michael Nichols is a photographer for National Geographic who was recently faced with the task of photographing a 300 foot Redwood in Northern California. In order to capture the tree in all of its glory, Michael had to use 3 Canon 1Ds Mark II cameras, several pocket wizards, a cinema dolly system, and dozens of bracketed photos all shot at f2.8. Each full image of the tree took over 1 hour to complete and in order to capture the perfect photograph of the tree Michael and his team photographed the redwood over 18 days. The video below shows a quick recap of the project and the second video in the full post explains in detail how he was able to overcome all the obstacles required in creating this 18 meter tall image.
These days, creating a portrait that grabs the average pedestrian’s attention isn’t an easy task. So what did local New York City comedian Colin Kane do to spice it up a little? He added a raging mob of crazy people behind him in this awesome portrait by photographer Monte Isom. It looks like Monte used a large 7′ Octabank to light the crowd and then a beauty dish with a little fill from a smaller softbox to give Colin a harsh key light look without losing the shadows. I love the overall idea and I’ve personally always wanted to work with a big group of people like in this video. If you are in NYC, check out Colin’s stand up act and definitely head over to Monte’s site to see some mind blowing advertising images as well as the largest group photo ever! Click the full post to see the high res final image.
The workshop started like any other; 22 photographers and 20 models (with guns) pile into a room and begin shooting at each other. Then the guys at Blown Apart Studios have an idea. How about a bullet time video shot in 1 take with a Steadicam?
With absolutely no planning they yelled for everyone to freeze and they filmed the frozen scene for 2 minutes.
One of my favorite things about Charleston, SC is being close to the ocean. I love being in and around the water, and although I’m not very good at it, I do enjoy wakeboarding. Charleston has become a pretty big hub for sports like kiteboarding and wakeboarding over the last few years, and this city is not short on talented athletes. I took an interest in wakeboard photography a couple years ago, and I always enjoyed shooting images from extreme angles. Although I’ve gotten some cool images, I never felt like I really had much control over my images with just daylight. I’ve tried to bring strobes outside to create something “different” but even those shots have been done a million times. I decided I wanted a way to shoot a rider flying through the air with interesting, studio quality lighting and this is what I came up with….click the full post for the full story.
The video below is a short excerpt from the DVD “Annie Leibovitz: Life Through A Lens“. Annie is commissioned to shoot for the movie “Marie Antoinette”. I found it really interesting how incredibly quick her shoots are. Before the subject ever shows up the concept and lighting has already been figured out. After a few clicks, the shoot is over.
If you are not already subscribed to Freddie Wong’s YouTube channel, you should go there right now and watch one of Youtube’s most popular animators. Well this week he has created a really simple video called The Freeze Shootout and has provided a quick behind the scenes video on how he did it. Watch the full video here and click on the full post to watch how he created it.
A few months ago, Patryk Kizny with Dito Gear shared a really amazing video called The Chapel with Fstoppers. I was absolutely blown away by the footage but I knew our readers would want to know exactly how he created it. So I was able to persuade Patryk to create a second video that outlined exactly what he did to create the original HDR timelapse images featured in The Chapel. With just a few Canon DSLRs, a magic arm, and a Dito Omni Slider, Patryk created a really unique looking video made from HDR stills. If you have any additional questions about the making of this video, leave them in the comment section and I’m sure Patryk will be happy to answer them. Click the full post to watch the original video in its entirety.
We’ve featured the work of David Nguyen in the past and this time he has taken his whole production to new level. In his most recent photoshoot, Whispers in the Wind, David takes his creative team out to a desert and creates some really inspiring composite beauty images. The theme is sort of a Chinese New Year, and David has included wild elephants, tigers, rabbits, and birds into the final shots. I love it when artists take a concept to the max and really push their own creative aspirations. If you have not checked out David’s portfolio, you are really missing out. Now if only we could get some BTS on how he made these composites!
Profoto has really done everyone a great service in having photographer Matthew Jordan Smith explain some of his personal favorite images in his portfolio. In this particular image, Matthew decided to photograph NBA superstar Ray Allen in his own backyard while jumping on a trampoline. Equipped with just a single Profoto D1 Air and a magnum reflector for hard light, Matt was able to take a rather limited lighting setup and create a highly stylized image. I think it just goes to show that thinking outside the box and not limiting your shoot to any prior conception can be more important in making a great image than simply focusing on your initial plans.
Jay P. Morgan seems to be releasing one great BTSV after another. I have enjoyed them all but I must admit that this one is by far my favorite. At his last workshop, Jay used a 5D Mark II and 4 studio strobes to professionally light his western themed set. If you don’t have all of the studio gear yet, keep in mind that it is possible to light scenes like these with much smaller and cheaper speedlights as well (like the SB-900 or 580EX), just keep in mind that they will not be as powerful as a studio system.
I’m always getting asked by our readers to post more videos on landscape photography but it is really tough to find good videos on landscape photography. Luckily landscape photographer Clyde Butcher has a nice little interview where he talks about how he got into landscape swamp photography and some of the gear he uses. All of his work is black and white and you can really tell how he has been inspired by other black and white photographers who have come before him. If you appreciate black and white landscape photography you will enjoy this video. Make sure you check out Clyde’s portfolio to see more of his work since he doesn’t showcase much of it in the video itself.
Chase Jarvis is most well known for his commercial images and a history of sharing his inspiration freely on the internet. If you’ve followed his work at all then you know he frequently heads down to New Zealand to gain a head start on marketing campaigns for the northern hemisphere since the seasons are opposite. In this video Chase is shooting landscape shots of New Zealand with the Hasselblad H3D (now the H4D) for a personal project of his. The footage is amazing and I’m sure the photographs will be spectacular too once he gets done with this project. Do I smell another coffee table book brewing from the Jarvis camp?
Today is our final day in NYC and we are currently in the studio shooting the next Fstoppers Original on Sam Yocum. I have just a second as the model gets makeup ready for the second look. I just stumbled upon this fantastic NYC timelapse by Josh Owens.