Human beings have rendered images of themselves in one form or another since the beginning of our species. The desire to try and capture the human essence in something that will outlast the physical body is universal; the need to encapsulate our understandings of “self” and “others” is found in every culture throughout the world. But have digital cameras, selfie sticks, iPhones, and Snapchat made such a pursuit so mind numbingly easy, that it has now completely lost it’s value?
Videographer and photographer Daan van de Westelaken was on a quest to find the perfect camera app for his iPhone. It's one thing to have all the features you want, but it's another thing to also not have the features you don't. Frustrated, he created his own, and after using it for almost a week, I'm hooked. It's certainly a tour de Force Touch.
Los Angeles-based photographer Zach Sutton has spent a long time doing on-location photoshoots for his business. These kinds of shoots usually involve the typical off-camera strobes on light stands and maybe an assistant to help mule equipment or adjust lighting for the photographer. However, when Sutton moved to L.A. last July, he quickly learned that this sort of on-location shoot is not allowed in the city without a proper commercial shoot permit — even if it’s ultimately for personal use. His solution for getting by light stand free looks somewhat crazy, but the end results speak for themselves.
While researching and deciding on what camera or lens to buy next, there can be a lot of banter, back and forth, and noise on opinions on what camera or lens is right for you. It is possible that some websites, influencers, or average Joe’s can hold slanted biases that may play a role in your purchasing decision, and we don’t want that. So what if I told you that there was a more objective resource to help aid your purchasing decisions? Well, I have a site to share with you: DxOMark.
When we think what defines our brand as photographers, we think of our logo, website, and even the style of imagery we create. But, everything that is related and connected to us and our company is a representation of our brand — from the way we answer our emails, interact with our clients, down to the pants we wear, the bag we carry our gear in, and the overall way we present ourselves to the world. Every detail reflects back on our company and in the end reflects back on our bottom line.
A few weeks ago, I had the pleasure of reviewing Syrp's awesome, affordable, perfectly executed Genie Mini time-lapse device. However, time-lapse photography and videography barely covers the beginning of what can be done with the New Zealand company's awesome devices. The Slanted Lens' Jay P. Morgan not only shares his entire lighting setup for a classic food shot, but also proposes some clever and welcomed case studies for how to use Syrp's devices to create better shots, not only around stars, but also around close-range subjects.
Introduced alongside the FE 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 last week, Sony has added its own take on the “Nifty Fifty” to their lens lineup. Aimed at photography hobbyists, the FE 50mm f/1.8 will only cost $248 and gives a wide aperture option to those that may be only shooting with the FE 24-70mm f/3.5-5.6 kit lens at the moment. Here are my first impressions of the new 50mm f/1.8 after briefly shooting with the lens.
Who else is sick of hearing the same five Premium Beat songs in what seems like every advertisement on TV right now? Well, fear not, a new site is in town to help you with your short film or commercial projects, and there is plenty of variety. For $199 a year, Art-list gives you access to universal licenses and unlimited downloads for all of your music needs. Yes, you read that right, unlimited downloads.
Anamorphic lenses are mostly used by cinematographers to get a ratio of 2.40:1. The cinematic look these lenses offer has become popular amongst photographers lately. While such a wide ratio is not very practical for most genres, the squeezed bokeh and the unique flare these optics create is a way to stand out amongst the competition.
As a studio owner I am privileged to see many different photographers working in my studio space. I have a chance to observe their individual working styles and to see what results in success. Over the past couple years I have noticed some rather interesting trends. Let me give you some insider tips after observing how some of the top photographers work.
If you’re looking for a little more reach with your Sony Alpha mirrorless camera, there is a new telephoto lens coming soon that you may want to check out. Sony announced plans to ship their longest E-mount focal length zoom lens, the FE 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 G OSS, in May 2016. I had the chance to shoot with the new telephoto mounted to the 42.4-megapixel Sony a7RII, and am happy to share my thoughts on the practical-use aspects of the lens in this article.
I've never been one for artificial light in my photography, and it's an issue that many photographers come across when leaving that oh, so beautiful natural light. The struggle of having a budget to put towards lighting equipment can be daunting but shouldn't limit you in finding the best way to create the shot. In this behind the scenes look, I will go into how I created a high-end product shot using light trails, all while on a budget. Remember, this can be recreated with any camera, including an iPhone, that allows for long exposures.
Having your images stolen at one point or another is virtually a formality when it comes to being a photographer. It’s frustrating, not least when it happens through one of your customers. One new website claims to have the solution to make sure you never get ripped off again.
First and foremost, gear is not the be all and end all. Creativity will bring the most out of the simplest of gear. We stand on the shoulders of giants now. Remember that it was only a few years ago that high ISOs were all but unusable and that once you'd shot a black and white frame, it stayed black and white. The fact remains, though, that understanding what your gear is capable of is the key to exploiting its strengths and weaknesses, which is where creativity lives. Learning a few simple things about what your existing gear is capable of will do more for your images than any shiny new purchase. Use these five simple exercises to learn more about what the tools you have can do.