Quick Tips to Improve Your Cosplay Convention Photos

Lately, I have been attending more events to cover as a photographer, especially anime and comic conventions. My approach to most of my convention coverage is walking around the event and trying to take as many photos as possible of the cosplayers there, kind of a run and gun approach. Sometimes the cosplayers are on a tight time frame so I don’t want to take too much of their time, or there is just a lot of things going on and I want to try to capture as much as possible. Some of the cosplayers outfits are just amazing, so it's best to slow it down and take the time to give the cosplay and their outfit justice with the photo. So where do you start?

Packing Light for a Long Photography Trip

Packing for a shoot in your town can be a pain, but packing for an extended shoot in another country brings a whole new set of complications into consideration. Recently, I’ve been doing a lot of extended trips for my personal project “Tattoos of Asia.” Over the few trips that I’ve done, I’ve managed to pare down my kit to what I absolutely need. It has been a long process, but I’ve learned quite a bit, and I’d like to share that with you as I prepare my kit for my upcoming India trip.

How Not to Photograph the Solar Eclipse and Melt Your Camera's Sensor

With the solar eclipse almost upon us, it is important to remember that there is a real reason why it can be dangerous to photograph. If somehow you missed all the articles and news stories talking about how to watch and photograph the eclipse safely and you are planning to go out and shoot it last minute unprepared, here is one last example of what not to do.

Apple May Be Making Moves to Make Phones Harder for Police to Get Into

As smartphones continue to become more ubiquitous and increasingly important repositories of anything from vital information to sensitive photos, the legal standing of police accessing the contents of a phone is becoming a more pivotal issue, one which Apple seems to be addressing.

Godox Officially Releases the A1 Flash for Smartphones

Last month, Godox announced that they were working on a flash unit that was specifically designed for smartphones. Now, they've made the Godox A1 available for presale. We already knew that the A1 would be capable of being used as an off-camera flash, a constant video light, or as a trigger for other Godox flashes. With the release of the product, we now have more specifics about the flash.

Improve Your Food Photography at Home With a Minimal Investment

Sean Tucker started his career as a food photographer and had the chance to work alongside with some of the best food stylists in the industry. Thanks to this experience, he’s learned quite a few secrets one needs to know in order to capture the most stunning food pictures possible. Through this 15-minute long tutorial, Tucker shares some of the fundamental knowledge every photographer and foodies should acquire. So if you’d like to improve or get started with this genre, be sure to check the full video and take notes.

Here's How to Pick Your New Video Camera

"Which camera should I buy?" This is one of the most common questions I hear. Whether the question comes from an aspiring indie filmmaker, a television production student, or a parent wanting to capture some memories of their children, the answer is never that simple. It’s the equivalent of someone asking what kind of car they should buy. Do you want to carry your kids to soccer practice? Drift around tight corners in a parking garage? Save on fuel costs? The point is that this question leads to more questions. Here are a few things to ask when you’re deciding on a new camera.

Man vs. Drone: How Good Are DJI's Intelligent Flight Modes?

After the release of the new DJI Spark and its ability to fly without a remote, it is believed that DJI has the technology for anybody to fly. Steve Kampff and I decided to put this concept to the test comparing DJI's Intelligent Flight Modes to the Manual Capabilities of the user. In this video, we see that flying can be pretty challenging, but DJI definitely steps up to the plate allowing users to achieve more complex shots with little to no skill or experience.

Here's What the Very Last Tab in the Lightroom Develop Module Does

Lightroom is a nuanced application full of controls, sections, subcontrols, subsections, sub-sub- well, you get my point. One of the least often examined tabs is buried at the bottom of the Develop Module: the Camera Calibration tab. This video gives a helpful explanation of exactly what that tab controls.

Ten Features and Tips for Using the Liquify Tool in Photoshop

The Liquify Tool is one of the most powerful features of Photoshop, with abilities that can subtly or vastly alter the structure of features in your image (and not just those on humans). Just like any powerful tool, though, it takes a bit of finesse and know-how to get the best results, and this helpful video will give you that knowledge.

Three Editing Mistakes New Photographers Often Make

I find it interesting how often I see new photographers make the exact same editing mistakes I made when I started out. Every photographer who has at least a few years of experience can look back at some of their first sessions and find a number of things that they continually did wrong. I recently took a look at some sessions from my first year of photography, as well as asking a few other photographers to do the same, and continually found the same common issues.

Be Warned, Instagram Controls More Than You Think

Instagram has been a strong tool for many photographers and creatives around the world for nearly seven years, but many still get confused by all the small details you sign yourself up for. The terms of service for many social platforms are a daunting and simple to bypass when clicking to sign on for the first time. Take this as a simple reminder: you want to make sure to at least read through the major bullet points before joining any social platform, as you are signing yourself up for a lot more than you think. Control of who you follow and unfollow could be one of those things you bypass.

How a National Park Changed the Way I Shoot: Lessons From Yellowstone (Part 1)

It's been several years since I first had the chance to visit Yellowstone National Park, but I can honestly say that it was an incredible experience throughout and I can't wait to go back. The trip to the national park was honestly a game-changing experience for me and how I approach my own landscape photography. I learned so much on that trip, not necessarily about my gear, but about what to shoot and how to capture it in a way that would help me really remember what it was like to see things in person.

Three Light Setups That Will Tackle Any Wedding Reception

I often get asked about my lighting setup for wedding receptions. Receptions can be an unruly beast to light properly without good equipment. You never know what you’re getting into with things like ceilings, available light, and even the white balancing nightmare of the DJ’s LED light system. Don’t assume that these setups are going to make you a better photographer over night.

Booking Isn't the End of the Sale

In person sales (IPS) have been a part of the photography process for years. With the onset of digital, it died down a bit, much to the disservice of both photographers (who are missing out on sales) and clients (who are missing out on memories). Thankfully, it's started to make a comeback, along with the value of printing images instead of just letting them live in the digital world.

Practice Exercise for Dodge and Burn Skin Retouching

If you're one of the countless photographers seeking out the best way to perfect skin on your portraits, then you've certainly been on YouTube tracking down video tutorials in hopes of unlocking the secrets behind the process. And if you're just starting out, invariably you've run into some hurdles. For most experienced retouchers, the tried and true technique for proper skin retouching in portrait work is, of course, the seminal "dodge and burn" method, and for good reason: it works. But perhaps you are brand new to the concept of dodging and burning for skin retouching and still haven't found much success with it? If so, read on.

Getting Images in Focus When Working in the Dark With Flash

Darkness is one of the most difficult situations to work with. Cameras have come a long way towards improved performance in low light but no light is an entirely different can of worms. Unless your goal is to create more ISO snow than Christmas in Alaska you need to introduce light. Flash is great at pouring some much-needed illumination into the frame but it isn't so great at making sure that your camera is in focus when you do so. Even the best autofocus system in the world continue to struggle in the darkness so, as photographers, it is our job to stack the deck in our favor by leveraging strategy to give our focusing systems a leg up.

Planning Versus Improvisation: Are You a Planner or Just Winging It on Your Photoshoots?

Benjamin Franklin once said, “If you fail to plan, you are planning to fail," but then again Franklin wasn't a photographer. Photoshoots with humans, animals, or even some objects are dynamic and even active situations that are at the same time part inspiration and part performance. Finding the right balance between planning and improvisation can help take your photography to the next level.

The Art of Photography as Therapy for Your Clients

Photography is not only a creative outlet for the photographer, but it also can provide healing to your clients. Most boudoir sessions are sought after in order to gain confidence, many family sessions are there to capture generations for preservation, and even underwater sessions can provide a healing to clients who are in need of the surreal emotions that come with being submerged.

An Afternoon With Backdrop Artist Sarah Oliphant

Sit down, strap in, and buckle up. This video is a long one but for those who can find 47 minutes to spare and watch this video you'll be rewarded with a casual insight and genuine conversation into the work space of premier hand-painted Backdrop Artist Sarah Oliphant alongside world-renowned Headshot Photographer Peter Hurley. If you've ever considered shooting on a painted backdrop, you'll undoubtedly find this video an interesting watch.

Canon Picture Profiles, Get The Most Out of Your Video Features

Dynamic range tends to be an important feature for any camera and something many photographers either boast or complain about. Canon cameras aren't really known for their dynamic range performance, but in this "two-minute video," Peter McKinnon explains how you can use the built in Canon picture profiles, to improve performance for video.

How to Make DaVinci Resolve Playback Faster In Two Clicks

DaVinci Resolve is a fantastic tool and has everything most videographers need to create perfect looking videos. However, the playback can be a bit slow and thus make the whole workflow a pain. But there is a one-click solution that will make your life much better. When I found out about it, my editing process became much faster.

Thinking About Shooting Anamorphic? Here's What You Need to Know

If you’re making a film, obviously the focus needs to be on the story. It seems that’s become the popular counter to a lot of debates about the fine-tuning of an image. While Roger Deakin’s mentality of “the type of camera doesn’t matter” can hold true on most levels, if we’re going to take ourselves seriously as creatives we need to be actively making decisions about how and why we create. Why do you choose this over that? And how does it affect story? One of the most important decisions you make as a director of photography or cinematographer is about lenses.

Check Out This Incredible Music Video With All In-Camera Effects and No CGI

London-based Director Oscar Hudson recently released a mind-boggling music video for Bonobo’s “No Reason,” and it's incredible. The music video, which is an homage to Hikikomori, a growing problem in Japan of adolescents and adults who withdraw from society and become increasingly isolated, was filmed using one continuous shot and only in-camera effects and no CGI.

What Happens When Joey L, Dani Diamond, Brandon Woelfel, and Jessica Kobeissi Photograph the Same Model

It’s already the fourth time Jessica Kobeissi got together with three other photographers to challenge themselves on a shoot. Each artist is given the opportunity to choose the outfit and location for one set, and then everyone has to come up with something in their own style. For this episode, the photographers were Joey L, Brandon Woelfel, Dani Diamond, and Jessica Kobeissi. Each having a very different photographic style, the video is quite entertaining.