Allow me to state that for the record before we dive in here, gear does not make the photographer. A talented artist can make an image with whatever falls into their palm, but for those of us who have the luxury of choice, be it the pocket sized Ricoh dangling from Moriyama's wrist, or Crewdson's cherrywood 8x10, a powerful image is about the framing of a moment, the machine it is seen through only serves simplify and streamline the process.
Reviewing our old photographic work can be a little daunting. As styles change and skills improve, we start to notice what was once a hero image is now sorely lacking in quality and perhaps even embarrassing to look at. I propose that it is a good thing if you hate your old photographs because it could be a sign that your taste is improving. Having a refined visual taste is arguably one of the most important factors to developing as a photographer. It guides all our creative and technical decisions, but it is also one of the most elusive qualities to develop.
While it’s a part of life most people try to avoid, for her latest project, Danish photographer Cathrine Ertmann decided to put death right in the spotlight. “About Dying,” a photo essay she created in collaboration with journalist Lise Hornung, takes on the subject of immortality in an anonymous and universal tone rather than through the stories of the specific subjects she photographed. In a sense, by doing this, it comfortably helps bring the viewer much closer to the intimacy of their own fates.
Each year, TIME Magazine picks and highlights the best photography books of the 12 months prior. This year, they’ve put a special focus on the growing trend of bucking the traditional publishing system as many of their choices fall in the realm of self-publishing and self-promotion. This was made most evident when many of TIME’s editors picked the same book for the top spot, Magnum Photographer Peter van Agtmael’s self-published Disco Night September 11, an often brutal look at America post-September 11.
You never know what’s going to happen in New York. Last week, photographic gold was struck in Times Square in the deep cavernous archives inside the Conde Nast building. Two thousand prints shot by Edward Steichen, one of 20th Century’s most influential photographers, were found after lying hidden for over eighty years. The story behind them, and of Steichen’s rise to photographic fame and acclaim, are almost too unbelievable to be true.
Flickr's tumultuous history has been well documented over the years, but this photo sharing site has been fighting back with revamped designs, generous storage for users and new photographic services. Among these initiatives is a new Wall Art service, allowing users to make prints from a mind blowing 50 million freely-licensed Creative Commons images as well as Flickr hand-selected collections. While this service provides an opportunity for photographers to have greater exposure and to make money from their work, some are very upset with how their photographs are being treated.
While sharing drinks with a friend, he started inquiring as to how I’m able to supplement my income with video editing projects. The more we talked, the more I realized that a lot of people have the ability and skill to do it, but they don’t understand the small things that can make or break being successful at it. In this post, I’ll share what I’ve learned about being a freelance editor.
Two things you can't get enough of: Benedict Cumberbatch and Dan Winters. Cumberbatch stars in The Imitation Game - opening next week - as Alan Turing. Dan Winters photographs him for the cover of TIME. Dan Winters' perfect attention to detail is on full display here - personally building various set pieces and even having an authentic WWII Enigma machine hand-delivered from a museum six hours away.
I have always associated a romance with being a specialist photographer, whether this be in the area of weddings, fashion, automotive or dreamy tintype portraits. You are valued as a master in your field and people want you for the style that you create. On the other hand, there are positives in working in multiple industries as a photographer. You rarely get bored due to the variety of work you do, and it’s fun to learn new skills and adapting to various situations. You might have to manage different “identities” but that suits you fine because you love the challenge conquering different fields.
The Syrp Genie is a great, though imperfect, timelapse machine that has recently added another trick to its arsenal: repeatable motion. Originally, the first couple bits of firmware to the Syrp weren't perfect at the repeatable motion tasks, but the most recent update has fixed all the issues, giving us the ability to fine-tune motions and get them time and again, exactly as they were the first time. With the addition of the new Magic Carpet, there is a lot we can now do with the Syrp.
There are many ways we can find new inspirations and ideas. From researching new work, doing workshops or experimenting with new techniques, most of us have these regular go to methods of getting ourselves out of a photographic funk. Psychologist Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi proposes that thinking more like the opposite gender can expand our creativity and essentially give us more scope in the ways we express ourselves in our work.
Rania Matar is a Lebanese photographer who has attempted to use her portraits to give an identity to Syrian refugees making a home in the streets of Beruit. An estimated three million Syrians have taken refuge to neighboring countries Turkey, Lebanon, Jordan and Iraq since 2011. Separated from family and escaping civil war, the youngest of the refugees must grow up fast to survive. Selling items on the street or shining shoes for small amounts of money, these young teenagers are forced to develop street savvy to get by.
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.
When he's not sitting in southern California traffic, San Diego editorial photographer, Rob Andrew, spends his days freelancing from one gig to another with all his gear in tow. In order to stay nimble, Rob has developed a style of shooting creative food photography with a surprisingly minimal amount of gear. He recently published what he calls a "Bag Check" on his blog, outlining the tools he uses to get the job done.