About two years ago, in the spirit of adventure and creativity, I decided I was going to try and photograph the ocean with artificial lighting. I had an image in my head of all the things I’ve seen in daylight hours, with the stark contrast of an illuminated wave against a dark backdrop. A run-of-the-mill day down at the beach certainly wasn’t going to do either. We were going to go straight to the top and shoot the biggest and meanest waves we could find.
A long time ago, our ancestors drew paintings with their hands in caves; later, they used papyrus paper, then canvas, all the way up to glass plates, film, and digital pixels. The means might have evolved, but mankind has always had the same instinctive need: storytelling.
I’ve always been a fan of big lights. There are certainly situations where they aren’t appropriate, but a lot of my work is centered around big, soft light. What has always drawn me to large sources of light is their versatility. Almost every subject looks good with soft light. Because large light sources cause such soft gradation in the shadows, they can be useful for both younger subjects with smoother skin, or even older subjects that may have wrinkled and scarred skin. However, there is one thing that should be cleared up: the definition of a large light source.
Faster, higher, stronger is the code by which I have made most of my lens and camera decisions for nearly a decade. I've never been satisfied with f/2.8. I've waged war between the focal planes of the eye and the eyelash, and I have the scars and image casualties to prove it. As I grow older and my battle-weary eyes begin to look back at my quest, I have begun to see the emptiness in it all. Were even my perfect shots completely out of focus?
We all know it's a little bit more competitive for females to "make it" in the photography and film industries. Yes, it is. The gender gap is real, and I'm not being a feminazi. There are studies about this — science. Even women who are the main characters in films don't get paid as much as their male counterparts (Jennifer Lawrence in the Hunger Games, anyone?). It's even worse for women who are behind the screen, the creators of these big projects. The team over at Vimeo isn't having it anymore, so they are doing something about it.
Since its release, the Nikon D750 has been praised as one of the best full frame cameras that money can buy. It has features that outperform cameras that are twice the price. One of the little frustrating elements of this camera though, that I still see being discussed to this day, is the finicky hot shoe.
As competition in the photography industry becomes tighter and tighter, the challenge of building a successful career with the camera is ever growing. In response to this, the industry continued to fragment into an array of smaller, niche, industries where each photographer specializes in a specific area of expertise. In an vocation once filled with photographers who were focused on shooting nearly anything, the classic, generalist, photographer has become a rather rare breed. Viktoria Haack is an example of a young, rising, star who has not only chosen to buck this trend, but who has also managed to build a successful career in the process.
Young photographers often don't have a great budget to buy a lot of equipment when starting out, let alone high-end lighting gear such as Broncolor's flashes and light shapers. Unless the equipment in question is given away, which is exactly what Broncolor offers to talented photographers under 30.
People continue to ask me the same question over and over, "How do I quickly grow my following on Instagram?" I will continue to tell them there is no easy way to go about this, but I have found one way in recent months that has been building my following much faster than I expected. Here are a few ways I am finding great follower growth, as well as a rise in engagement. Trust me, hold tight while I go through a few ways you as a professional can get ahead of some of these young guns with iPhones.
Over a year ago, after having discovered his work a year before that, I felt it necessary to introduce Fstoppers' readers to photographer K. R. Whitley, the world traveling wilderness/landscape and urbex artist. Since then, Whitley has traveled even more and expanded his work in some bold, new directions. I brazenly invited him to an interview at my house, and thankfully he agreed.
It’s safe to say that this camera doesn’t suck, and in the hands of someone like Tim Kemple, who’s at the top of their game, the results are pretty incredible. I got the chance to chat with Tim about his thoughts on using the new Phase One XF 100MP camera, including what happened when he flew it on a drone over a waterfall.
World-renowned photographer and visual engineer Benjamin Von Wong has done it again. His breathtaking, inspiring photography has taken yet another step and this time for a great cause. According to Von Wong, this is the hardest shoot he has ever pulled off, and one he hopes has the biggest impact.
Ever tried to photograph a subject, only to find out that you don’t have enough depth-of-field to get the whole thing in focus? Typically our first reaction is to stop down to increase our DOF. Unfortunately that doesn’t always give us the results we expect. The first issue is that even with our lens stopped down to its smallest aperture, we still may not have our subject completely in focus.
Pye Jirsa of Lin & Jersa Photography is back again with another great tip on how to make fantastic images in less than stellar light. Pye explained in his last video how to create golden hour without the sun, and in this new video, he shows how to take an awesome "hero shot" in harsh sunlight using a single strobe (and an elephant, but let's focus on the light here).
This short film is a great piece of satire, aimed at some of the stereotypical characters and views found on an indie film set. Couple that with a concept that is ridiculous, yet believable enough to be true, and you've got gold. This humorous short takes you behind the scenes of a film shot using only the Toyota Prius backup camera.