Portraits

Utah Salt Flats:  Photographing Capoeira With Natural Light And Strobe
Last time we featured a video from Mike Tittel, he was showcasing his edgy lighting look on some female tennis players. This time he has taken his photography team to the salt flats of Utah to photography the Brazilian sport Capoeira. For this shoot, Mike pulls out a few Profoto 7Bs with 2x3' gridded softboxes for many of the shots. However it's his natural lit shots that really grabbed my attention which he lit using the very helpful 4x6 California Sunbounce to fill his subjects. After the video, head over to Mike Tittel's Website to check out more of his work and click on the full post to read how Mike lit these shots in his own words.

The Portrait Photographer's Rube Goldberg
This video has come across my desk several times the last few days but I never really bothered to click play until Ben Andino shared it on my facebook page. Not only did I have to hit pause and rewind it a half dozen times or so but I found myself laughing out loud during some of the segments. Every photographer will recognize products like the Gary Fong Lightsphere, Gorillapod, Lastolite Hilite, Canon Lens Mug, Strobe Snoot, and countless other photography staples. I can't imagine how long this Rube Goldberg setup took to build and get working 100% but I know I'm still not sure how several of the segments worked (like Mario and the instant print). My favorite part was definitely the TSA scanner. What part did you guys find the most entertaining? Check out the full post for the Behind The Scenes of how this was made.

What Are Lenticular Images You Ask?  Find Out How To Make One
Maybe I'm behind the times but when I came across this video sponsored by Red Bull Illume, I had no idea what I was about to watch. Photographer Dan Vojtěch teaches you how you too can make a moving lenticular image while he photographs professional wakeboarder Sasha Christian. The software he uses is the 3D Masterkit by Triaxes if you want to try to create one of these yourself. It's definitely a cool effect especially when you can get different shots of your subject in the exact same pose.

Irina Werning:  The Creator of The Back To The Future Photo Trend
A few years ago, photographer Ze Frank started an online photo concept called Young Me, Now Me where he took current versions of old photographs. The trend was huge on websites like Myspace and Facebook and was sure to put a smile on your face. Well Argentinian photographer Irina Werning has taken this concept even further by creating images that replicate the scene exactly from the location to the wardrobe and even down to the lighting. Irina's series called Back To The Future is a awesome example of pushing your work into the mainstream by thinking outside the box and creating something everyone will remember (and can partake in themselves). Click on the full post for a few examples of her work.

Red Sox Photographer Michael Ivins Talks Baseball
Now that we are in the thick of the major league baseball season, you are probably going to see a lot more images from the league's best photographers appearing on issues of Sports Illustrated and ESPN. One such photographer is Michael Ivins who is the official photographer for the Boston Red Sox. Check out this little behind the scenes video from the Boston University Today on how Michael captures athletes and creates interesting portraits quickly and on the fly.

How To Trick People Into A Great Pose
No matter if you are photographing people in a wedding, an advertisement campaign, a fierce fashion spread, family portrait, or just a headshot, chances are you are going to need your subjects to show a real human emotion. Throughout my own photography career, I have realized that only about 1% of people can turn on a fake emotion that comes across as genuine in the final photo. The remaining 99% of the population have to experience an expression real time as it happens spontaneously. Jasmine Star is one of the most successful and trend setting wedding photographers on the scene right now and she has created a great video explaining how she strategically fools her clients into "moving into a pose". This technique can work with everyone from normal people to professional models, but where you will really see this sort of coaching succeed is with people who are self conscious and camera shy. Get them to focus on your funny personality or another human interaction around them and let your shutter roll! Do you have any phrases or techniques you have found successful time and time again? Share them in the comments

Projecting Your Photographs Back Onto Your Photographs
This video was recently featured on Strobist but since we've been getting so many emails about it I figured we'd share it with those of you who missed it. David Myrick decided to try something rather strange when the electronic group Glitch Mob strolled into his studio. Basically he shot portraits of the band members on a white seamless background and then projected those images back onto the artists as they wore white clothing. If this sounds confusing just watch the video and it will all make sense. Fresh ideas like David's "projection technique" continues to inspire me in my own work. What do you guys think - anyone tried this technique before?

Art or Pornography?  The Life and Work of Sally Mann
Sally Mann is an American photographer who has pushed the limits of black and white fine art. Early in her career, Sally captured both real and staged moments of her children's youth that quickly became subject of much controversy. Immediate Family, a collection of images of her children under the age of 10, showcased mainly normal, happy childhood moments. However other images featured her kids unclothed with themes of depression, anxiety, and even death. Obviously Sally's work sparked strong emotions, and the debate about what is exploitation and what is art became synonymous with her name. The acclaimed What Remains: The Life and Work of Sally Mann is an interesting documentary that focuses on Sally's work and how she approaches her craft. Now a praised nature photographer, Sally discusses her contraversal early images as well as many of her current projects including landscapes in the deep south and portraits of her husband as he deals with muscular dystrophy. Check out Sally Mann's bookstore for great reading material from this revolutionary photographer. Click the full post for the full documentary.

How A Good Behind The Scenes Video Should Be Made
Shawn Smith is a photographer from Melbourne Australia. His company Blinq sent us this very informative BTS video outlining how they recently shot editorial portraits for two Ironman triathletes Luke Bell and Matt White. What caught me most about this video was how Shawn gave so much detail and insight into each photograph he was setting up. They were using top of the line gear like Profoto 7B packs and beauty dishes, but all of these shots could have easily been produced with less expensive gear and small speedlight modifiers for the photographer working with a budget. If you want to see how Sean and crew approach shooting triathletes underwater and in their natural element, check out the exciting video we featured back in December.

Scarlett Johansson Behind The Scenes With Mango

For the last three years or so, Scarlett Johansson has been the face behind the acclaimed Spanish clothing company Mango. In their latest Spring/Summer 2011 campaign, set in the Goldstein Residence in Beverly Hills, photographer superstar Mario Sorrenti builds his images exclusively with natural light and reflectors. It's hard to imagine a wet haired Johansson ever not looking incredible, so it should not come as a surprise that Mario and company produced...

How To Create A Pure White Background For Video Or Stills
Everyone claims that they know how to shoot subjects on pure white but many of them still struggle with the background light washing out their subject. In the video below, Olivia Speranza shows us how she created the look for a video but the same techniques apply to flash as well. The key is to light the background as evenly as possible and expose it so that it is just barely pure white. If your background is a few stops past pure white, the light will begin to eat into your subject.

Peter Hurley: The Art Behind The Headshot DVD Pre-Order Begins Now
A few months ago Patrick and I flew up to NYC and filmed our first ever full length DVD (dual DVD actually) with Peter Hurley. The DVD is still being edited but we can finally see an end in sight. Initially we didn't plan on having a pre-order but when Peter Hurley decided to start teaching workshops, we decided to create a special pre-order deal. When the dual DVD is released, it will cost $300. If you purchase it before October 1st, 2011, we will give you a $300 credit towards any of Peter's workshops (and this can be used at any time) so you are actually getting the DVD for free. Peter is also going to personally sign all of the pre-ordered DVDs. Patrick and I are working as fast as we can to edit this DVD while managing Fstoppers.com and also shooting a wedding every weekend. Things are busy but we hope to have this DVD released sometime this summer. Head over to Hurley's website to sign up for "The Headshot Intensive," his new 2 day workshop. There are currently 4 slots left for his first workshop on May 21-22.

How To Light Large Groups Of People Evenly
It's Spring time which means a lot of photographers are back to shooting outside and probably photographing group portraits. As a wedding photographer myself, I'm constantly having to light groups between 2 and 20 both quickly and effectively. In the latest video by Adorama Tv, Mark Wallace talks about how to light large groups evenly in a studio with Profoto lights. His explanation is really detailed, and if you apply this knowledge you can easily adapt this technique outside with something like a Photex Softlighter and some speedlights for even lighting on location.