Audio Recording Basics: Using Shotgun Microphones for Documentary Video Production

Audio Recording Basics: Using Shotgun Microphones for Documentary Video Production

Audio is arguably the most important facet of any film or video production. There is a saying that goes: “Audio is 70% of what you see,” which means that sound makes up more of the experience than the visuals do. So while we may spend a lot of time planning for what our shot looks like, it’s even more important that we mic it properly for the best audio recording possible.

Maxmax Launches Monochrome Fujifilm X-Pro1 and X100S

Maxmax Launches Monochrome Fujifilm X-Pro1 and X100S

In 2012, Leica created a stir in the photographic industry with the release of its Leica M Monochrom. Half of the Internet was up in arms about the ridiculousness of the concept (and, of course, the price tag), while the other half praised Leica for its bold move in the modern market of high-contrast, over-saturated camera phone images. With names like "poor man's Leica" and "the new Leica" being thrown around Fuji forums all over the Internet, the question was put to Fuji asking if they would consider a monochrome-only version of one of their cameras.

Custom and Lightweight Mounting Solutions from Ram Mounts

Custom and Lightweight Mounting Solutions from Ram Mounts

As many of you I'm sure, I have boxes full of various grip gear: magic arms, C-clamps, A-clamps, ball heads, Studs, and more. I love grip gear. I absolutely love the versatility and functionality each piece has both in its dedicated uses or how you can always come up with new and imaginative ways to solve any problem. There are a ton of items out there made specifically for photography and cinematography but some of my favorite lesser-known grip supports are Ram Mounts. Cheesycam.com seems to feel the same way in one of their newest videos.

Bite-Size PS Tutorials: Quickly and Easily Create Your Own Photoshop Actions

Bite-Size PS Tutorials: Quickly and Easily Create Your Own Photoshop Actions

Everyone and their Auntie seem to sell Photoshop action sets these days, as if they're the answer to something. I'm primarily referring to action sets which create entire "looks" for your image, but there are uses for actions which are less comprehensive and arguably more useful. For example, I use an action for sharpening my images which creates a layer I can lower the opacity of or mask until it is satisfactory. Actions like these are easy to create and can result in accrued time saved. This guide will ensure even people whom have just picked up Photoshop for the first time can create actions.

Your Photography Is Political

Your Photography Is Political

We live in times of turmoil. The old fixed orders of the post-World-War-II globe have lately been called into question in new and unexpected ways. People are more engaged in politics than ever before during most of our lifetimes. Photography has always been a very political art form, and not simply in the obvious ways. You may not think that your images are political because they do not showcase political issues. But even if they don't do that, they still say something in the political sphere. As we all struggle to be the best photographers we can be, none of us should forget that, when taking and making images, we always also make statements.

'Instagram Pods' Can Double Your Engagement and Spark New Life Into Your Social Experience

'Instagram Pods' Can Double Your Engagement and Spark New Life Into Your Social Experience

Last month, I wrote an article called Hacking Instagram to Grow a Huge Following and Build Better Engagement with "Instagram Pods" that was received far better than I ever thought possible. I received hundreds of direct messages within the app of people asking about Instagram pods as well as wanting to join one. I apologize to those I have not yet gotten back with but rest assured, the hack seems to work and has sparked new life into my social media experience on the platform. Not only has it doubled my engagement, likes, and blown comments through the roof in comparison to a few months ago but its become a new found way to connect with new creatives from around the world.

How To Upgrade Your Tech Repair Workflow

How To Upgrade Your Tech Repair Workflow

As creative professionals, hobbyists, and tech nerds (myself included), we often find ourselves wearing many different hats in our day-to-day activities. The crafts of photography and cinematography, among others, remain heavily dependent on technology that needs to be reliable and largely up to date. Often, that means the technician hat comes out to perform RAM upgrades on computers, to replace internal batteries and hard drives, and, admittedly, to repair screens on mobile devices. Here are some tools and tips to make that process a bit easier for you.

Techniques to Improve Your Composites from Film

Techniques to Improve Your Composites from Film

Many photographers have that one muse who inspires creative projects, knows exactly what the direction is, and is always the perfect collaboration. One artist found his own muse in himself when he set forth on a project to capture every stage of emotion of his own work. Creating composites from film, this artist brought a new light on the emotional range that photographers face everyday.

'Boyfriends of Instagram' BTS Project Goes Viral

'Boyfriends of Instagram' BTS Project Goes Viral

Last year, my husband and I traveled to Greece. While we were in Athens, we could not avoid crossing paths with the same couple at every sightseeing location we went to. I must have seen the entire wardrobe of the girl during those hours we walked. Her eccentric wardrobe change was not the only thing that caught my attention. It was rather strange to witness an all dressed-up girl posing alone non-stop. To me, it was definitely meant for social media.

Pixar and Khan Academy Teach The Art of Storytelling for Free

Pixar and Khan Academy Teach The Art of Storytelling for Free

We've all seen Toy Story. We've all been taken on the same journey with Finding Nemo, and felt sad when Wall-E was left behind to clean earth all by himself. We've all had either a smile on our face or a tear in the eye due to a fictional 3D rendered character showed an emotion you identified with. We take photos and video of what we know. We show others these images and moving images with the aim to make them feel that same emotion. We create because of the emotional experience we felt at some point in life towards a movie or photo that made us decide that's what we want to do.

Use My New Ultimate Film Processing Price Guide to Decide Which Lab Is Right for You

Use My New Ultimate Film Processing Price Guide to Decide Which Lab Is Right for You

A few months ago, I started a passion project of mine: FilmObjektiv.org. Film Objektiv was started with one goal in mind: to get more people shooting film. We do this by renting film cameras at low prices for longer periods of time, by providing prints at a low cost, and also by serving as an online and educational resource to help film shooters find everything they'd ever need. It's this last part that still needs some work, but it's well on its way with this new pricing guide for film labs across the country. Still, I could use your help.

People Look More Powerful in Photos When Facing Right

People Look More Powerful in Photos When Facing Right

I'm not too sure about this, but maybe it's because most of the images on my Facebook profile that people like are the ones of me looking left but hey, this is science, and it's called Spacial Agency Bias. Simone Schnall is a Director at the Cambridge Embodied Cognition and Emotion Laboratory. She says we all want to look progressive, dynamic, and forward thinking. It's what the social circles, culture, and industry demands. It's also what we want to portray when people see photos of us.

Tinder for Film Stocks

Tinder for Film Stocks

Film has had a great resurgence in the industry. Whether it's because of the hipster hype or due to people wanting the special color and feeling that film brings is unknown to me. On January 5, 2017 Kodak made it known that they were bringing back a classic, the EKTACHROME Film stock.

Three More Great Lenses That Aren't on Your Radar but Probably Should Be

Three More Great Lenses That Aren't on Your Radar but Probably Should Be

We Photographers sure love our lenses! So much so that the previous article of a rather similar name received so much love that I couldn't help but write a follow up. The world is filled with amazing glass that doesn't have to completely bust the bank. Sure we all want that new Nikon 105mm f/1.4 and certainly the enormously priced brand new Nikon 70-200mm f/2.8E but do we really need them? I'd argue probably not, the market has an enormous selection of great lenses, many of which are cheaper and offer exactly what many photographers need.

Six Tips for New Freelance Corporate Photographers

Six Tips for New Freelance Corporate Photographers

I've been shooting corporate jobs since about 2010. At first, it was a little rocky. I didn't really know what I was doing, I hadn't shot enough with other photographers to learn the ropes, and I was just a self-taught photographer trying to make ends meet. Fast forward to 2017, and I'm shooting high-profile executives at Fortune 500 companies, and am expected to do it quickly. I'm shooting luncheons where half of the attendees flew in from another hemisphere on their private jets, and am expected to do it quietly. And well. So, here are a few quick tips for people who are just starting out in the freelance corporate photography world.

Proposal: A New Definition for Great Light

Proposal: A New Definition for Great Light

By its (fabricated) definition, “Great Light” is soft, of an orange tinge, preferably at an oblique vertical angle and coming from a direction that shapes the subject enough without causing harsh shadows. So we’re essentially talking about sunsets and sunrises. But must we only whip out the camera at golden hour? Or are there more photographic opportunities to be had?

Fstoppers Reviews the Portable and Powerful Polaroid Travel BrightSaber

Fstoppers Reviews the Portable and Powerful Polaroid Travel BrightSaber

Polaroid is a brand many have forgotten, a true classic of yesteryear, but today they seem to continue to push out new and innovative products that can be used by any type of photographer. Last week I reviewed the Polaroid Snap Touch and today, I am checking out the latest BrightSaber. A powerful yet portable light in a form factor many find appealing to those on the go or wanting to simplify their gear.

IKEA Reminds Us How To Live With Light

IKEA Reminds Us How To Live With Light

We as photographers capture light. It's the fastest thing we know in space and time, and we try make it still to enjoy and share with others. It's the one thing we as photographers use every time we press the shutter button. To change from looking at photography for inspiration we can follow Chase Jarvis's advice and look at a Swedish Furniture design company IKEA to show us how they think about and use light, and about how we use it and how we don't.