Having recently moved from a DSLR into medium format digital, I can affirm the transition isn't a cheap one. Besides shelling out tens-of-thousands of dollars for a body and digital back, you've also got to buy a new set of lenses which average around $4k each. Add tether cables, tripod mounts, additional batteries, and filters, you're in the hole for the equivelent of a home mortgage. Every once in a while, the manufacturers will offer incentives and/or savings and for Hasselblad, July happens to be one of those times.
Recent Medium Format Articles
Today, Hasselblad launched the CFV-50c -- a medium format back using the same 50-megapixel CMOS censor in the H5D-50c that can be attached to any existing V-system camera. With no external cables required to connect the backs, the back is incredibly well priced at €11,000. While we're not quite sure what that means for the US market, the new back seems poised to be an incredibly affordable 50MP CMOS medium format system.
His client list reads like a who's-who in iconic businesses: Pearl Vision, American Standard, Shell Oil, Virgin Galactic, AOL, Wells Fargo, Salesforce, Red Bull, Minute Maid, Costco, and Allstate. He has even photographed celebrities like Kevin Spacey, Richard Branson, and Al Gore. No doubt you've seen the remarkable work of Chris Crisman in the past, but photographers want to know how does he do it? What does his studio look like? What equipment does he use?
Late last year I was contacted by one of my magazine clients to shoot their upcoming cover with Panic At The Disco front man Brendon Urie and it had to take place across the country in Las Vegas in about a week (I am NYC-based by the way). I scrambled to find some cool locations in the region, knowing full well I did not want to shoot in some cramped hotel suite. Little did I know that with some good researching and shrewd negotiating, I would find some of the coolest locations I have ever photographed, and just moments from the Las Vegas strip.
My Weekend With The Phase One IQ250 Camera System: Lifestyle, Swim, Beauty, Fashion, and On-The-Road Edition
A few weeks ago, I had the pleasure of testing out the Phase One IQ250, and so I thought I would put together a practical write up of my time spent the Phase One IQ250 Camera System, the Capture One software, and whether or not either one has found a permanent place in my workflow.
This past week I've been sleep deprived, socially inactive, and holding a camera in my hands for more than I ever have in my entire life. You see, this past week I've been working with PRO EDU to film my first tutorial series to go on sale at the Fstoppers store this summer. Though learning a lot about my own work and process, I think I learned the most when I used a rented PhaseOne IQ250 system for one of my shoots.
Lauri Laukkanen, photographer and editor over at SLR Lounge, recently posted an image to the Fstoppers Facebook group that's been getting a lot of buzz. The popular image came out of a personal project that he developed and shot over the course of just two days. The behind-the-scenes video shows Lauri and his team on location at Yyteri, Pori (Finland), their extremely minimal setup, as well as the final images.
It's easy to dismiss the amount of difficulty involved in location shoots. A few years ago, Joey Lawrence (JoeyL) shot a personal project of portraits in Ethiopia. Whether traveling by van, boat or Indiana Jones plane, it's great to have the opportunity to see how hard the literal journey was on the way to the figurative photographic destination. Just handling the equipment was a pretty substantial undertaking.
The iconic Windows XP wallpaper "Bliss" is widely considered to be the world's most viewed image. Though most of us are familiar with the beautiful image that has graced our computers at one point or another, not many are familiar with the story of how it came to be, and fewer yet that it is in fact a real image captured on film! Photographer Charles O'Rear shares with us the story behind how he created the image with nothing more than his Mamiya RZ67 and a roll of Fuji Film.
Pentax Japan has added a product page for the all new medium format 645z complete with snazzy marketing graphics and a full overview of all the specifications. What was all the more interesting to see however were the sample images they included. These are the first official images released by Pentax and they feature not only the 645z but also the much talked about all new 90mm f2.8 Macro lens.
According to PhotoRumors, the Pentax 645z medium format digital camera is coming April 14th and will be absolutely loaded. The replacement to the 645d will feature a 52.99Mp CMOS sensor like the new offerings from PhaseOne and Hasselblad, shoot ISO 100-204,800, and shoot full HD video and 4K in "interval mode". In addition, the 645z is rumored to not have an AA filter (like the D800E, D7100) for better sharpness, live view with contrast AF and focus peaking, and a new 27-point (25 cross type) AF system.
Fine art and surrealist photographer Oleg Oprisco’s work is dramatic and ethereal; challenging the viewer’s perception of reality. Oprisco’s photographs feature subdued coloration and unexpected props-often playing with expectations of size and perspective.
We live in a time where photographers and filmmakers must combine powers to be competitive in todays advertising market. Recently a huge fashion client approached our production company to capture concurrent motion and still ad campaigns with supermodel Lily Aldridge, but we had to do it all in under 10 hours with 2 complete hair and makeup changes and 12+ outfits. Advertising creatives today need to be able to shoot stellar visual content and assemble bulletproof productions.
You may have read my previous post previewing the first modern CMOS-based medium format back to hit the world market by Phase One. Soon after my post, Phase One HQ sent me one of the first IQ250 backs to arrive in the US to review for this site. I had a solid 2 weeks to try it out and see what this system was capable of doing.
One does not often associate violent protests and the threat of sniper fire with portrait studios. However, photojournalist Anastasia Taylor-Lind’s recent portraits of protestors and fighters in Kiev, Ukraine make us question this apparent disconnect. Taylor-Lind's stunning and revealing portraits were taken with a medium-format film camera between outbursts of violence, documenting the men and women fighting for their freedom in Kiev.
A few weeks back, I posted a full behind the scenes blog about my Robocop photoshoot. I had such a fun time with the shoot and final images that I figured others may enjoy playing with my Phase One MF raw files as well. I posted a contest on my personal photography blog that challenged people to re-interpret Robocop using up to 8 of my supplied Phase One RAW files. There was hundreds of entries from across the globe a handful of star-studded judges to review the entries.
As far as digital products from Pentax go, the 645D Medium Format has always been the king of the hill for the company. Fans of Pentax, such as myself, have been anxiously awaiting an update to the original digital medium format offering from Pentax which was released nearly 4 years ago in 2010. Nipping at the heels of the recent Hasselblad and Phase One CMOS Medium Format announcements it appears Pentax finally has its own Medium Format announcement to make... and a 50MP CMOS no less.
Adventure Sports Photographer Tim Kemple was one of the only photographers in the world who was lucky enough to try out the new Phase One IQ250 that was just announced earlier today. Check out the behind the scenes video, but also read the full article for my interview with Tim, where he shares his thoughts on the system, as well as what it's like to beta test cameras.
For years, medium format cameras have been stuck with digital CCD sensors that are poor-performing at high ISO's because creating medium format CMOS sensors was prohibitively expensive. Well, that has all changed now. Hasselblad teased their new CMOS medium format camera earlier this week, but today Phase One announced their new CMOS digital medium format back and not only is it ready to ship on Monday, but it already looks like it will be a class dominator.
The swirly bokeh of fast lenses designed by Joseph Petzval in the mid-19th century is no longer solely available to fine art photographers using view cameras. In July, we profiled a Kickstarter campaign by Lomography to fund the creation of a brass Petzval for Nikon and Canon mounts. Now, a new campaign is hoping to fund the production of an F3.8 120mm lens for medium format cameras with a Pentacon Six and Hasselblad compatible mount.
It's not every day you can make one big massive sandwich tower and get paid to do it. In this behind the scenes I take you through an average shoot in our Chicago studio. You can see the team of people that come together to a shoot like this happen.
Stock Photographer Yuri Arcurs definitely went big with this experimental photoshoot, to see if it would be possible to shoot a fast moving fighter jet, and actually light it up with flashes. This behind the scenes video shows us how difficult it was to pull off, but that the end result justifies the elaborate and at times frustrating work.
Philadelphia-based photographic artist Isa Leshko turned her camera onto aging farm animals, horses and dogs to create a powerful study of mortality and aging. The body of work, captured with medium format film, is currently exhibited at the Corden Potts gallery in San Francisco and was inspired by the caregiving process she underwent with her parents.
This shoot combines two things that I really love as a photographer: motorsports and incredible shoot locations. This comprehensive behind the scenes video captured by Ron Risman really gives you a great idea of how photographer Gregor Halenda put the campaign together. The resulting images were crisp and clean, showing off the bikes and locale.
This is it. By now, You will have been inspired, honed your ideas, found the perfect location and booked your talent. You will have taken that little bit of inspiration and nurtured it into a full fledged shoot. If you are anything like me, you will have tossed out far more ideas than you kept and you will have spent hours upon hours solidifying the few that stuck with you. It is safe to say that the hard part is over.
Recently I was lucky enough to have a day off, something that doesn't happen too often. I woke up that morning feeling a little burnt out from the daily non-stop marathon that is living and working as a freelancer in New York City. I dragged myself out into the kitchen, made myself some bacon and eggs and sat down to eat. Over breakfast, I realized I hadn't made a picture for myself in almost a full year.
When it comes to architectural photography, there is one that stands above all: Julius Shulman. Not only was he responsible for creating the world's most iconic images of architecture, but he was on the forefront of pushing the boundaries of the art form into what it is today.
Once upon a time at brunch in Santa Monica, I created the biggest, most complex cheeseburger anyone had ever even attempted to ask a chef to make. I basically picked my top 10 things off the menu and asked the chef to put it between ciabatta bread. Then I ate the entire thing. It gave me severe meat sweats and rendered me unconscious afterwards, but it was the most delicious thing I had ever created. It's my single greatest achievement in life. I learned a lot about myself that day and will tell the Epic Burger story to my great great great great grandkids.
Last year, I decided to pursue a fun portrait series of Luchador fighters from the Chikara Pro Wrestling League, located on the East Coast of the US. I've always been fascinated with this style of fighting and entertainment. These big colorful characters take the ring to pummel each other to the great delight of their dedicated fans. Some may call it "fake" or a performance, but I can tell you first hand that I saw blood drawn during a match on more than one occasion. These fighters are dedicated to their craft and I wanted nothing more than to capture them on camera.
There is a fine line between having a well defined photographic style, and constantly putting out the same stale, boring work week after week. A fine and dangerous line. A line that can make the difference between being a successful, inspiring photographer and a photographer who has lost his audience and has even lost interest in his/her own work.
Sean Madden, creative director from the ad agency Brains On Fire, reached out to me earlier this year and asked if given an arsenal of stunt drivers, the newest high performance BMW's, and a closed race course, could I create a 58 foot long composite print for BMW. My answer? "When can I start?" Watch the video and read the post below to learn how the shoot came together.
A few years ago we featured photographer Kevin Kozicki in a behind the scenes video using pointsettias for a beauty shoot. Kevin is back with an amazing glamor photo and video shoot with filmmaker Christopher Park in a beautiful pool location using the Phase One IQ180 that was featured in Sessions Magazine. We had the opportunity to speak with Kevin and get his insight on the shoot.
When Falken Tire decided they were going to run an all Honda ad on the back cover of Honda Tuning Magazine, their creative department, headed by James Yim, knew it had to make a statement. Their solution was to include a lot of cars...45 to be exact. Here's how they did it.
I've been working on a personal photo series capturing movie and television cars (real and replica) for about 5 years now under the title "The Unicorn Project". I've posted about this before on Fstoppers (here, here, & here), as you may recall. Most recently, I had an opportunity to photograph a replica A-Team Van and KITT from Knight Rider while I was in Los Angeles. These happen to be two of my favorite television cars of all time. Watch the video and read the full post below to learn how it was done.
My good buddy and fantastic car photographer Richard Thompson (check out his facebook page) shared a unique shoot he just completed recently. He photographed over $20 million in rare exotic cars using the Phase One IQ180 (80 MP medium format monster) in an extremely rare and beautiful location over 3 days. Even better, the shoot benefitted a children's charity. Check out the full post below to see more images & to learn more about how everything came together on this remarkable shoot!
You may recall my previous automotive rig tutorial with the Green Hornet Black Beauty. My buddy, award-winning commercial photographer Nigel Harniman (www.harniman.com), recently put together another great automotive rig tutorial post using his Phase One ALPA and a Ferrari. I think the shot came out awesome and I definitely learned a few things, which you can read about below!
Phase One asked me to go on a speaking tour through China (Hong Kong, Shanghai, Beijing) to share about my photo career, creative inspiration, and being a Phase One shooter myself, to demo their innovative new IQ2 digital medium format camera back system. After flying in to Hong Kong from Washington DC just hours before, I had the great honor and pleasure to be a part of Digital Rev's Cheap Camera Challenge. A broken Holga + jet lag + beer + a goof like myself = What could go wrong?
Photojournalist David Eulitt recently completed Punching Back Time, a series of photographs that features senior athletes who at seasoned ages, strap on gloves and spar in the ring.
The boxers were participants in the 2nd Annual Ringside Masters Championship boxing tournament, a competition for amateur boxers ranging in ages from 35 to 75.
Every week Benjamin Von Wong releases a new behind the scenes video for your viewing pleasure and this week is no different. I find that Ben is probably one of the most talented conceptual photographers that likes to use fire in his photographs, but this week he decided to switch it up a bit and the results are stunning, to say the least.
Lomography is into film revivals lately, recently releasing something quite similar to Kodak's discontinued Aerochrome film, Lomography Purple. What's so special about Lomography Purple? It changes all of your greens into a bright purple color. Surely such psychedelic effects will be revered by hipsters, lomographers, and acid-dropping enthusiasts around the world, but what is the actual use of such a film? Believe it or not, there is one (or two)...
The incredibly young and talented, Joey L. has released a new documentary that was shot while shooting his intimate series of photos, 'Holy Men'. Set in the breathtaking backdrop of India, the documentary filmed by Cale Glendening shows Joey while at work with his assistant Ryan, but more importantly proves that capturing an amazing portrait isn't just about the latest gear or technique, but truly the subject.
The Lomography Store has a new camera available for pre-order, the BELAIR X 6-12 camera. Featuring multiple formats and auto-metering, the camera is perhaps the most flexible of its kind for an unprecedented price. Pre-order now for a 30% discount!
There's this "man rule" that every red-blooded male should drive at least one 12-cylinder vehicle before they die. This is one of those jobs where I got to assert that rule with a golden fist. A gold-plated Lamborghini Aventador and a 1965 Shelby Cobra replica with a BMW Alpina suspension and late model Mustang 5.0 engine... both incredible vehicles created by the team over at Prestige Imports and both sets of keys left in my care alone. One of those jobs where you pinch yourself and ask, "how did I get here again?"