Articles written by Patrick Hall
It's pretty hard for someone to come into the film and video industry and make a huge splash but that's exactly what the Dutch company Yellowbird has done. They are using a camera very similar to what Google uses on its Streetview cars to produce not only 360 degree photographs but for the first time 360 degree interactive video! Youtube has already jumped on board with this new technology so be prepared to see videos in the future with several storylines, multiple characters, and previously unseen coverage of live events and documentaries. These sort of things really get me excited...and Hollywood thought 3D cinema was going to be all the rage :) Click the full post to see what it is like to view a large music festival in 360 degrees!
This video was released earlier this year but I really loved watching it so I figured you would too. It's a pretty clever way to advertise a product like waterproof shoes and would have make for an excellent commercial concept for an advertising ad. Click the full post to view a BTS video about this crazy new sport called Liquid Mountaineering.
When I first saw Gregory Heisler , I thought he was a college professor not a professional photographer. I guess in reality he is both since this is one of the most indepth BTS videos I've seen explaining how to construct lighting that doesn't call too much attention to itself. I'm always a big fan of images like this since shooting environmental portraits forces you to not only produce a great portrait but also create something iconic and often time monumental. Gregory does a great job with this portrait of then NYC Mayor Rudy Giuliani. Much props to Profoto for producing some really educational videos.
I'm starting to realize how many of our readers enjoy the mix of sports cars, photography, and behind the scenes so this one is for you. I'm really not sure what is going on here but what happens at the very end is pretty remarkable! I wish the audio was a little cleaner but I'm sure if you are into drifting fast cars you probably can't hear anyways! And when you get done watching this, check out the awesome DSLR video gear over at www.cinevate.com
Dave Black is a professional photographer who shoots some of the most stylized sports images I have ever seen. In this BTS video, Dave is pairing up 8 SB900 flashes with two Radio Popper PX triggers on two Lightware Foursquare brackets . Why does he use such a crazy setup when shooting motorcross? Often times with fast action sports you need to shoot with quick shutter speeds beyond the 1/250th of a second flash sync limit. The only way to do this is to use the FP high speed Sync mode Nikon (and Canon) flashes offer when hardwired to your camera. Luckily Radio Popper (and Pocket Wizard for Canon ) have created wireless radio iTTL/eTTL syncing which gives you the ability to us High Speed Sync with your flashes off camera over long distances. This setup is about as complex as you can possibly get (and expensive) but Dave has made a great video showing off the setup. Unfortunately he does little to explain WHY this setup is necessary. Head over to his Lightware Foursquare / Radio Popper Post to read more about how it all comes together and be sure to check out Dave's portfolio as well.
Dave Dugdale has been an Fstoppers reader for a while now but I had not come across his own useful site Learning DSLR Video until yesterday. He left a comment on one of our videos and I clicked on his site to check it out (yes we actually check out our reader's sites). When I saw one of his videos I immediately emailed him and asked if he would teach me how to colorkey footage in Premiere. Now Dave is not a photographer at all but rather an audio engineer, and what is so cool about his videos are that they document his progression into the field of videography. As a professional photographer myself, I feel like I'm in the same boat as Dave and I'm sure a lot of you guys feel that way too. Dave is filming on a Canon T2i and editing on Premiere CS5 . If you are just getting into audio or video, stop by LearningDSLRVideo.com and check out some of his work. Hopefully you can use this information for your own BTS videos; I know we are going to do this soon on one of our FS Originals in the near future.
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!
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.
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 :)
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 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.
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
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.
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.
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 .
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.
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!
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 .
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.
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.