Fstoppers Originals

5 Tips for Shooting Environmental Portraits in Tight Spaces

5 Tips for Shooting Environmental Portraits in Tight Spaces

One of the most exhilarating aspects of environmental portraiture, especially when out on assignment, is that you never quite know what your shooting environment is going to look like. If I had a nickel for every time I walked into an awesome location, only to be quickly shuttled off to a closet-like space to do my work... Well, I'd be able to buy a sandwich. But a really nice sandwich. Here are some tips that may save your sanity while trying to compose an interesting portrait in a postage stamp sized room.

Three Simple Phone Hacks All Photographers Should Have in Their Arsenal

Three Simple Phone Hacks All Photographers Should Have in Their Arsenal

I think we can all agree that the thing we want more of as photographers is additional time in a day. How exactly do we get more hours in a day? It's simple: we cheat. Over the last few years that I have been shooting, I have tried to hone my skills in photography while also learning any way I can to refine my process in shooting, editing, and eventually delivering my shots to either clients or posting them to social media. Here are a few hacks I have learned to use on my iPhone in a pinch.

The Art of Sigma Art: from Inspiration to Implementation of the unLimited

The Art of Sigma Art: from Inspiration to Implementation of the unLimited

I am a wide angle fanatic, especially when it comes to prime wide angles. I carry four lenses in my camera bag: two of them are prime wide angles, one prime nifty fifty, and one telephoto. Out of all these four, I found myself reaching just for one particular lens: the Sigma 24mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art. This came to substitute my old Canon EF 28mm f/1.8 USM lens which I adored, but it used to struggle a bit with chromatic aberrations and at times I craved for a wider view.

Survey Says: American Weddings are Too Damn Expensive

Survey Says: American Weddings are Too Damn Expensive

Every year, The Knot compiles statistics from thousands of weddings in their annual Real Weddings Study, and we get to learn all sorts of things about the ins and outs of what makes up a wedding in America. While there's plenty of interesting statistics, such as how 83% of couples used a smartphone in planning their wedding, the marquee stat is cost, and for the past five years that number has crept onwards and upwards to a brand new record that's just insane when you compare it to the average wedding in Europe.

An Untapped Market: Agricultural Aerial Photography

An Untapped Market: Agricultural Aerial Photography

I was recently commissioned to photograph fields of Rooibos Tea (a healthy tea with no caffeine and great antioxidants found in South Africa) so the farmer could document his potential yield. He also wanted details, as in what side of the tea field to start planting so he could plan the sowing schedule for the next five years. The idea is to not sow on the same soil, so new rows of tea plants need to be formed in five years. Tea likes fresh, new soil.

Five Tips to Help You Slow Down and Improve Your Photography

Five Tips to Help You Slow Down and Improve Your Photography

Slowing down while taking pictures is not always an easy thing. For those of us that learned with digital, the idea of shooting only a limited number of frames per session seems unthinkable. However, doing with what we have, and pressing the shutter only when we are sure to have a picture we are going to appreciate, is a very refreshing approach. Having just recently started shooting film, here are five tips I could give a digital portrait photographer to get better results, spend less time working, and slow down a bit.

5 Affordable Pieces of Gear Every Video Camera Rig Needs

5 Affordable Pieces of Gear Every Video Camera Rig Needs

Not too long ago, I remember going through a phase when the process of building up a camera rig was, for me, the most exciting part of owning gear. My decisions were based less on functionality, and more on the question of “will this item make my rig look more like a cinema camera?” Big and bulky was the order of the day, and if people ever advised cliches like: “the best camera you have is the one that’s on you” or “it’s not about what gear you have, it’s about how you use it,” their advice was taken with a pinch of salt.

Ten Must See Photography Documentaries and Their Trailers

Ten Must See Photography Documentaries and Their Trailers

If I ever find myself wallowing in a creative rut, I have a few surefire ways out of that hole. My most effective method, although probably not the quickest, is to watch a documentary on another photographer. They need not be similar to your own brand of photography; in fact, I often feel it's better when they aren't. Whatever sub-genre of photography the subject does, a documentary is invariably a rich vein of ideas and inspiration.

Keeping the Creativity in Your Photography Business

Keeping the Creativity in Your Photography Business

This is by no means a new topic, but a recent poster in the Fstoppers Wedding Photography group lamented that they felt they were stuck in a creative rut, and it got me thinking about the problem of trying to be experimental within an industry. Chances are if you’re shooting for a client, they have a preconceived idea of what you're going to provide, even if that’s just a ballpark “these kinds of colors, this kind of emotion.” If you rocked up to a wedding with the awesome idea of only shooting macros of toes, you’re going to have a hard sell when it comes time to deliver the finished product; they’d need to be really good foot shots.

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