We have all been there, that moment when your stomach slowly turns to drizzled mush as it discovers the harsh brutality of a critical comment. In a few short words your career, art, and passion is reduced to the strangling grip of failure. Receiving criticism is not for the faint of heart but with the right frame of mind you can get the most out of any critique, solicited or otherwise.
When I saw this wedding shoot I was stunned into silence for a few moments. I really didn't know what to think of it! In my mind, when I think of wedding photography, I think of a world of immaculate white dresses, expensive shoes, thoughtful furnishings and of course, smiling wedding couples and their guests.
Two summers ago, I attended a music festival in Italy, where I had the opportunity to attend a master class given by Louis Andriessen, a prominent figure in new music composition. Classical musicians are known for striving for perfection, so when I opened one of his scores and found the following note regarding the ossias (alternate passages of music), I was struck:
We all want to get better at what we do in our work, that's a given, right? Studying, reading, taking classes or doing workshops, watching videos on YouTube, and of course tireless practicing, are a few of the many ways we strive to better ourselves in our photography. The time will come however, without fail, when nearly every single one of us will post a photo to a photography group on social media or a forum, and ask for "CC" or "c&c" or simply "Any thoughts?" and await the comment storm that's coming. And usually that's when the problems start.
In this episode of Critique the Community, we are joined by architectural photographer Mike Kelley. Mike has been a long time writer for Fstoppers and last year Fstoppers produced the highly proclaimed photography and Photoshop tutorial Where Art Meets Architecture. Today Mike and I give an extended critique of 20 architectural images submitted through the Fstoppers Community.
In this next episode of Critique the Community, we'll be sitting down with Architectural Photographer, Mike Kelley. Mike is best known for his incredible light painting methods. In less than 5 years of owning a camera, he has gone from knowing very little about photography to shooting National Ad Campaigns for the Architecture industry. If you want Mike and us to consider your image for this episode, leave a link to your image within the community and we will give you our honest opinion.
Growing up, I have been entranced by Jackie Chan films for their insane stunts, beautifully choreographed action sequences and hilarious physical comedy. His action scenes are both visually stunning and involving, playing underdog characters fighting against impossible odds. Chan’s dedication to his craft is unquestionable but perhaps he has not been given enough credit as an action director. In this video, filmmaker Tony Zhou breaks down the framing and editing techniques that Hong Kong directors use to create engaging fighting scenes, highlighting how many of these techniques are absent in Hollywood films of today. If you are interested in becoming a filmmaker, you need to watch this.
Any photographer who wants their work to stand out has to offer something unique to the viewer. The following list contains ideas, poses and editing techniques that probably aren't too original and should be avoided. If I had known this when I started photography, I probably would have found a signature look sooner.
A teacher once told me that filmmakers need to fully utilize the frame within their scenes and move the camera in ways that help drive the story forward; otherwise they're just filming a play. That always stuck with me and it's a point I still take note of in movies. Tony Zhou from Every Frame a Painting does a great job of explaining why the camera frame is so important in comedic cinema along with a slew of other techniques that few people other than Edgar Wright are making use of in today's comedies. This is eight minutes of insight you're not going to want to miss!
I’ll never forget the email; I was on a plane somewhere over the Florida coast, on my way to the Bahamas for the Fstoppers Workshops 2014. Just before I left the States, I had signed on with the artist consulting firm Wonderful Machine. The first step in preparation for a press release was to tear my website apart. The critique was tough and they slashed it hard… here I am in one of the most beautiful places in the world, feeling a truck load of anxiety. For years, I had thought I had a clean and straight to the point website, but it turns out I needed to strip it down even more.
The guys at Photo Rumors tested the new Canon EOS 7D Mark II and the DxOMark results are a bit haunting for Canon users. In the comparison charts below they found the highly anticipated Canon EOS 7D Mark II tests similar to the five year old Nikon 300s. Has Canon hit a plateau in meaningful updates to push themselves ahead of the rest of the pack? With comparisons to five year old Nikon systems, it could be the case.
Earlier this week we asked members of the Fstoppers Community to submit their best landscape photographs for a new episode of Critique the Community. This year at Photokina, Lee and I had the pleasure of meeting the incredibly talented travel photographer Elia Locardi. In this episode, Elia joins us in the studio to give photographers helpful tips on how they can improve their landscape and cityscape images.
It's been a while since we last Critiqued the Community and we have received a lot of emails asking for us to bring it back. For this episode of Critique the Community, we will be joined by special guest Elia Locardi who is an amazing landscape and cityscape photographer. Since we have such an amazing talent in the Fstoppers Office we wanted to produce a Landscape Theme for the show. If you want Elia and us to consider your image for the show, leave a link to your image within the community and we will try to give you our honest opinion.
Last week Lee and I did our first ever Critique the Community where we looked at 20 images from the Fstoppers Community and gave our honest review of them. It was such a success that we have decided to do it again. This week we review 21 new images, rate them on a scale of 1-5, and give advice about how they could be stronger portfolio photographs.
Over the weekend I asked our community members if they would like Lee and I to give critiques of some of their work. The response was huge, so we have picked 20 random images to look over and give our honest opinions and suggestions. I never thought being this brutally honest would actually be quite fun and productive.