Your Voice is Something You Build, Not Something You Find

Your Voice is Something You Build, Not Something You Find

When people talk about finding their “voice,” you might get the impression they looked down one day and there it was — lying on the ground, fully formed and functional, just waiting to be used. In my experience, though, finding your voice is more about hard work. And time. Lots of time. Our voices are built, not found. It seemingly takes forever. A decade or more. And here’s the frustrating thing: you can’t rush it. There are no shortcuts to finding your voice. You have to go the long way — slowly accumulating influences, trying on different styles, finding a voice that feels natural — and then refine it slowly, project after project, year after year. The good news is that while there isn’t a shortcut, there is a path.

Just Say No: A Photographer's Tale

Just Say No: A Photographer's Tale

Getting to “yes.” It is the story of our lives. Whether pitching a client a new idea or nervously asking the woman you met at the corner store for a date, that sweet little three letter word can be pure music to our ears. But as we progress in life and the choices become more complicated, we realize that the questions themselves aren’t always so black and white. And, sometimes, our three letter friend isn’t always the right answer.

Tips for Photographing Live Music

Tips for Photographing Live Music

Living in the live music capital of Texas, there is no shortage of opportunities to experience incredible shows while taking some memorable shots. Capturing the excitement can be tricky, however, as dim lighting and moving subjects don’t usually play well together. Here are some tips for making the most of your next concert.

Photographer Monica Jane Frisell Travels Across America in an RV Making Portraits with a Vintage 4x5 Camera

Photographer Monica Jane Frisell Travels Across America in an RV Making Portraits with a Vintage 4x5 Camera

Photographer Monica Jane Frisell has spent the last four months living out of a renovated 1988 Toyota Seabreeze, traveling across the United States with her scrappy terrier Lou and a Zone VI 4x5 camera for her project “Looking Forward/Portraits from an RV.” I caught up with her to talk about the project, life on the road, and the process of shooting large format film.

Tips for Creating Candid Portraits of Children Outdoors

todder walking in beach grass

One reason why I gravitate to photographing pets and children is that their unpredictable nature lends to capturing more genuine images that portray their true personalities. In my experience, the parents’ favorite portraits of their children are the candid photos in which the children are completely unaware of the camera and can just be themselves. Here are a few tips on how to create better candid imagery of kids.

Here's Why Testing Cinema Lenses Didn't Matter Before, But Does Now

Here's Why Testing Cinema Lenses Didn't Matter Before, But Does Now

There are a handful of companies that are well-known for testing lenses. And the photographic community has a love-hate relationship with many of those that claim to have scientific tests, etc. Does it even matter? Can you tell the difference? Isn't it all just good enough? Regardless of your personal opinion, LensRentals has a respectable reputation for testing photographic lenses for optical features that we actually care about. They haven't tested many cinema lenses, but that's about to change — and for good reason.

Photography Adventures on a Budget? Go Camping

Photography Adventures on a Budget? Go Camping

So you want to create images and travel to gorgeous and beautiful places but how are you going to afford to travel several days or weeks and still pay for food, a roof over your head, and the costs to go from point a to b, c, d, e, etcetera? Well, do you like to camp? For those photographers where money is tight or who just want to have the most flexible arrangements possible, camping is one of your best options to get to out of the way places and still get some rest in between your photographic pursuits.

Regain Creative Motivation with 'Too Far Gone'

Regain Creative Motivation with 'Too Far Gone'

Sometimes as creatives, we lose sight of what originally attracted us to the creative process of photography and videography in the first place. We get lost in the noise while we are busy juggling social media, websites, managing shoots, pitching to clients, and constantly reinventing our work. Every now and then we need an image or a video to really put in perspective why we feel the way we do when we raise our cameras to our eye. The wonderfully directed short film "Too Far Gone" does just that.

How to Use Luminosity Masks for Landscape and Cityscape Image Editing

How to Use Luminosity Masks for Landscape and Cityscape Image Editing

Luminosity masks are a fantastic way to make precise selections based on luminance values (hence the name). As with all things Photoshop, there are multiple ways to achieve the same result. I find using channel selections to be the easiest way to manually create my masks. I realize I'm probably preaching to the choir, but for those yet to join in on the singing, I hope you find this information useful as you continue to build your editing tool set.

How Christopher Nolan Uses the Shepard Tone to Build Up Tension in 'Dunkirk'

How Christopher Nolan Uses the Shepard Tone to Build Up Tension in 'Dunkirk'

One of the ways the Hans Zimmer-produced score of "Dunkirk" maintained the growing tension throughout the movie was by using a sound that gives the impression of a build-up. What makes it strange is that the tension-building nature can keep going forever without ever going out of its original parameters and sounding weird. Tension and release is something needed in a production of a film, whether it's a short film or a full-blown blockbusting, award-winning movie. This video shows how it's done.

How to Set the White Balance of Your Video Footage in DaVinci Resolve

How to Set the White Balance of Your Video Footage in DaVinci Resolve

White balancing video footage is crucial to make it consistent between sequences of edits you are putting together. However, adjusting it by hand using color wheels can be quite cumbersome especially for those who don’t see colors all that well. Using DaVinci Resolve 14 beta you can, however, make this adjustment incredibly fast and easily. Let’s see how with Dave Andrade from The Post Color Blog.

The U.S. Army Ban on DJI - What Is Really Going On?

The U.S. Army Ban on DJI - What Is Really Going On?

According to an internal memo published by sUAS News, the U.S. Army is asking to terminate the use of all DJI products, including cameras and software “due to increased awareness of cyber vulnerabilities associated with DJI products.” This unusual request leaves a lot of unanswered questions such as the nature of the threats and the reason behind of this global ban. What is really going on?

Will Temporary Flight Restrictions Ruin Jobs for Drone Operators?

Will Temporary Flight Restrictions Ruin Jobs for Drone Operators?

As a U.S. citizen, I have to abide by the laws of my country; As a drone operator, I have to abide by the rules of the FAA, just like anybody else. Yesterday I was at a wedding in New York when I found out President Trump was venturing to his golf course in Bedminster, New Jersey for a 17 day vacation. Along the way, he brought an amazing Temporary Flight Restriction (TFR) that is stopping me and many other people from flying with in a 30 NM radius of his location.

Must-Have Accessories and Apps for Your DJI Phantom 4 Quadcopter

Must-Have Accessories and Apps for Your DJI Phantom 4 Quadcopter

When buying a quadcopter, it’s hard to know where to draw the line on what accessories you should be buying with it. It’s already an expensive investment independent of all of the extras you’ll practically need. It’s even more painful to consider how a simple, inexpensive component can keep you from flying successfully. After adding a DJI Phantom 4 Pro + to my lineup, I complied a list of all of the hardware I found most valuable to help you get the greatest return on your investment.