Usually when I hear someone is shooting a sexy calendar my stomach churns a bit as I imagine poor photography, less than stunning models, and ridiculously boring scenes. Thankfully this military themed calendar from Hot Shots is definitely not one of those poorly executed photoshoots. The final images are not yet public but they do have a bunch of them within this behind the scenes video so watch closely. The lighting is perfect, the photoshop is inspiring, and the amount of production value everyone put into this is something everyone should notice even if you aren't shooting sexy military bikini babes (which who isn't really?). If anyone comes across more of the final images let us know. In the mean time, enjoy a break from your typical Tuesday afternoon!
The team over at [Framed] has created another great BTSV, this time with underwater fashion photographer Mallory Morrison. Mallory, a dancer for 23 years, uses her history in the field to help direct her models under the water. I've attempted underwater photography like this before, and it is so much harder than it looks. Check out the video below to see a master at work.
Photographer Scott Bourke gives us a complete overview of how he took a fantastic product shot of a few bottles of beer. Scott uses a single flash and 4 reflectors to create a very professional looking image that any photographer (no matter how little gear they have) is capable of creating. As I have always said, photography is all about good lighting and good lighting does not mean expensive lighting. Let's hope that Scott is going to enter our BTSV contest. Check out the full post for the final image and a BTS diagram.
last week Jay P Morgan showed us exactly what softboxes do to light sources. Each softbox shape can be used to create a unique look and in the video below Jay shows us how he chooses the correct size to light a specific shot. Keep in mind that if you don't have enough money to buy multiple sofboxes, you can change the relative size of a single box by moving it closer or further away from your subject.
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.
So your band is about to go on tour and the obvious question is "what are we going to use for our backdrop?" Most bands would normally use a projector, an LED panel, or just some plain old stage lights. What the Japan based band Androp decided to do was much more interesting. Using 250 Canon cameras equipped with external flashes, the band wired everything together and programmed them with Arduino open source software to display different patterns of light and text. You really have to watch the full video to even grasp how cool this turned out. Check out the behind the scenes video below and jump to the full post for the final video.
Everyone knows Annie Leibovitz is one of the most, if not THE most, well known photographer in the world. Her images evoke a strong sense of story, drama, and beauty. It's not surprising why so many advertising agencies choose Annie to take their clients' portraits. In this video Annie Leibovitz puts Profoto co-founder Conny Dufgran in front of his own lights for a series of environmental portraits. Like most of Annie's behind the scenes videos, you really have to pay attention to the details because she isn't going to spell it all out for you. The first time I watched this video I noticed how much feathering she does with her medium octaboxes, how she controls fill light with large black cards, and even a little on how she directs her subjects. I also like the magic arm trick she uses to get her softlighter closer to her subject...I might have to steal that one. If you have any tips you have taken from Leibovitz share them in the comments.
Last time we featured a video from Mike Tittel, he was showcasing his edgy lighting look on some female tennis players. This time he has taken his photography team to the salt flats of Utah to photography the Brazilian sport Capoeira. For this shoot, Mike pulls out a few Profoto 7Bs with 2x3' gridded softboxes for many of the shots. However it's his natural lit shots that really grabbed my attention which he lit using the very helpful 4x6 California Sunbounce to fill his subjects. After the video, head over to Mike Tittel's Website to check out more of his work and click on the full post to read how Mike lit these shots in his own words.
We have featured a lot of Dave Hill's unbelievable photoshoots here on Fstoppers. So when I saw his Adventure Series posted over at Strobist I thought it was an older video. Oh how I was wrong....way wrong! In his latest video, Dave Hill places his composite images into an After Effects type environment and lets you see every layer and all it's photoshopped glory. The video outlines all 11 images so it's a bit long but you will probably still find yourself watching all of them in wonder. This video was also a great reminder that Dave is to work making behind the scenes videos so you will probably see a lot more of him in the near future. What do you guys think? What is your favorite image from this series?
Recently LeBron James was photographed for GQ Magazine. The video below is really just a promotion for that magazine but if you keep a sharp eye, there is some really good information to be learned. The lighting for most of the shots appears to be pretty simple; a single light above the camera. The size of the light changes from shot to shot from a huge parabolic reflector to a simple bare bulb held by an assistant.
One of the most important things any photographer can do to push their career forward is to take on assignments that are beyond what they feel comfortable shooting. When Todd Rosenberg was approached by Sports Illustrated for a commemorative issue, he was asked to shoot 10 historic cars from the last century of the Indianapolis 500. The only problem was Todd had never photographed an automobile before in his life! Using advice given by car photographer Michael Furman, Todd built a large studio (which included a 10'x30' Chimera softbox) directly inside the auto museum. Check out this great interview conducted by PhotoShelter as Todd discusses how he organized the shoot as well as some business tips on how he got the client in the first place. Also check out all of the images on the Picade Indy 500 page.
Photographer Ryan Doco Connors recently found one of his images being printed on a t-shirt without his consent. Sugar Factory, the company selling the shirt, claimed that since the image was changed 40% (I have no clue where that number comes from) it was no longer considered his photo. Instead of suing, Ryan fought back with a few new photos and lucky for us, he shares all of the lighting details. This is exactly how The Stolen Scream story started... Hopefully this isn't the beginning of something much bigger for Ryan.
Von Wong, a photographer who has been featured on Fstoppers many times already, has created yet another great BTSV. In this edition Von Wong uses a long exposure and some sparklers to create some really killer images. We have all probably taken long exposures of sparklers but with a little creativity, you can create a real portfolio piece with anything.
Our good friends over at Pocket Wizard have had a great year with the release of the new Nikon MiniTT1 and FlexTT5 wireless radio triggers as well as the new AC3 controllers which allow you to control groups of flashes directly from the top of your camera. This video of Neil Van Niekerk shows how he is able to use the new AC3 controllers along with some relatively small softboxes to produce quick and easy studio style shots on location. I'm a huge fan of the Photoflex Octodome softboxes that I use on most of my shoots but these small Lastolite softboxes have an interesting look that you can't always get with larger softboxes. I guess it's the soft directional lighting that adds a bit of moodiness into Neil's images that I like. If you have had a chance to experiment with different sized softboxes on location, which ones do you prefer and why? Let us know in the comments.