As photographers, we’re constantly re-crafting our portfolios, building new work, and (hopefully) growing as artists. Along the way, many of us will face challenges, get burnt out on locations, and ultimately feel in a rut. Through time and education, we invest so much into our portfolios, however the best advice I can give is to invest financially too.
Over the past couple years we've all seen Benjamin Von Wong rise to the occasion time and time again with shoot after epic shoot. This time is no different, when he heads back underwater (this time in the untamed wild ocean of Bali) to attempt a shoot surrounded by a coral-covered shipwreck. In Von Wong's words, "everything is more complicated underwater."
In photography - and in anything else, really - it seems as though when we first discover something new, whether it be a new camera, a new technique, and/or a new system of doing things, it’s fairly natural I think to want to use it all the time. When I first “discovered” photography, I immediately gravitated toward those photographers like Emily Soto, Zach Arias, Joey L, and Syl Arena.
Only the rare few of the millions of selfies taken have mass appeal, and an even rarer few get their pose/selfie named after them and their own hashtag. Kendrick Brinson and David Walter Banks are the husband wife photography team behind brinsonbanks.com and, not insignificantly, the main subjects and namesake of a style of pose and photo that has now become known as BrinsonBanksing, equipped with its own Instagram hashtag.
One of the most trying experiences I've had since becoming a photographer has been coming to terms with the fact that there are places in our county where, quite simply, we are not allowed to take photos. Now, I’m not talking about setting up hundred-person movie sets complete with production vans and craft services tables, nor do I mean shooting on private property, sacred land, and/or Area 51-type secret military bases...
During an initial meeting with local publication NFocus Magazine, the Editor-In-Chief asked for a unique aesthetic on Louisville's theater and arts community and wanted a massive group shot, but not your traditional group shot. I threw out the idea to shoot actors and their "characters" from directly overhead on a theater floor, as if they were action figures laid out and organized. Two seconds after I uttered the idea, I realized I had no clue how I would pull it all off.
Tom Atwood, a photographer and professor of broadcast journalism at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville, went about taking photographs of models for a project he described as a series of “industrial landscape portraits” near the Phillips 66 Wood River Refinery in Roxana, Illinois. His shoot put him up against resistance and alleged serious threats.
I always tether. Whether it's for a client or fashion editorial, the CamRanger has played a very important role in capturing rock solid images. But, before the wonderful technology of wireless tethering came into the picture, I always tethered to a workstation. However, that came with the annoyance of a long tether cable dangling off your camera. I always felt the sense of being trapped or held back from moving freely, I was always concerned and it was always a distraction.
One of the hardest parts of filming on moving sets such as moving cars or trains is to maintain perfect lighting in a way that makes sense to the viewer. There are many obstacles the filmmakers have to deal with when shooting on a moving set, like how to move the lights while keeping it on the same angle while the vehicle is moving and how to keep the camera shot steady and focused on the subject. Check out this great BTS video showing how filmmakers in China solved these problems.
Tamron's VC technology can't be beat: it's simply the best option out there for any type of optical stabilization. I can't live without it when it comes to video, and it's so good it often makes using a steady cam unnecessary. Common complaints with Tamron is often the build quality and sharpness, so let's see how their latest super zoom, the 150-600 f/5-6.3 handled a wildlife shoot.
About a month ago, I traveled to Southeast Asia to put THE ULTIMATE, PORTABLE TRAVEL PACK (shortened name, rights still reserved) to the test. Several people asked for a follow-up. How did this tiny, travel kit work out? …Did I even get any pictures I liked? …And most importantly, did I lose everything gambling on a high-stakes Muay Thai tournament, only escaping with my life and seven fingers? Read on to find out.
Although it would seem like common sense, proper motivation is key toward not only getting things done, but getting things done well. This is true in any creative field and this is especially true, it seems, in the over-saturated everybody-with-a-camera-is-a-photographer world we live in.
Brandon Cawood, from Dalton GA, has taken appreciating first responders to the next level. What began as a personal project to photograph local EMS personnel, soon blew up and went viral. Cawood captures priceless moments in the daily lives of firefighters, police and other public safety personnel. He has a movie poster style and pulls it off in a flawless manner.
Zoom, focus, spray and pray. That seems to be the M.O. of many photographers who shoot runway. I admit, I was one of those photographers. The one who scours through thousands of images at the end of the night, wishing they had shot more strategically. And, after two hours of culling, flagging three images per look, they’d be lucky if only one was tack sharp. After many shows, I’d criticize my every move and would long for a time machine to do it all over again.