New York City born photographer/artist Roger Ballen spent the better part of the last four decades in Johannesburg, South Africa. In that time he has produced a body of work that has been described as a fictionalized visual dialogued between individuals, their architectural space, found objects, and domesticated animals. His approach has been hailed as among the most unusual and exciting developments in contemporary photography.
It is somewhat cathartic to know that creating something beautiful can leave a profound impact on the creator. It seems possible for the emotional impact we feel when viewing art to be measured in the volume of revelation the artist unloaded to create it. This is reassurance that something that resonates is real.
Directors each have their signature shots, or do they? Creative trademarks like Wes Anderson’s symmetry, Alfred Hitchcock’s zoom-but-not-zoom, and Quentin Tarantino’s trunk shots might be central to their success — but so are the thousands of “normal” frames surrounding these shots: connective tissue often obtained from second units, stock archives, and even other films.
Citing savings due to larger-scale production following an expansion into 22 countries and over 2,000 retail locations, 3D Robotics has dropped the price on its popular and well-designed Solo drone, as well as on the matching Solo gimbal. The Solo drone captured a wide audience with the help of a flashy launch video that introduced the product about a year ago, in addition to its fresh, modern design. Today, you can get the Solo for just $799 and/or add a gimbal to your kit for $199, down from yesterday's price of $999.95 and $399.95, respectively.
Over the last few years, there just haven't been that many massive updates to DJI's Phantom drone lineup. The biggest was perhaps the inclusion of its own camera when it ditched the need to add a GoPro to the bundle. But just looking at today's Phantom 4 design is enough to indicate the major steps DJI took to step into an entirely new generation of autonomy. Featuring class-leading obstacle avoidance and autonomous flying modes, the Phantom 4 is so good that people are afraid of the implications of never actually having to learn to pilot a drone.
Creating a music video for a national act is one of the most intense tasks for a modern day filmmaker. Sure, the tools are more affordable, but declining budgets and insane turnaround times can turn your production into a sprint. Last month, my company, McFarland & Pecci, was tasked with creating two new music videos for the Grammy-nominated metal act, Killswitch Engage. My partner, Ian McFarland, and I drop everything when these guys call.
Professional photographers understand the quality of imagery that can come from a camera phone will never contend with the pictures and video you can capture with your DSLR. Phones will likely always have an innate handicap with sensor size, which leaves it's images lacking. That said, it would be quite unwise for photographers to neglect the most recent developments in camera phone technology. The ease of use, accessibility, and ability to quickly share your imagery can make your phone one the most important pieces of gear in your business. So, when phones like the new Asus ZenFone Zoom come out with a 3X optical zoom, it's best to pay attention.
A couple of a weeks ago I shared a video called "Centriphone," which left many people (myself included) wondering how exactly the creator, Nicolas Vuignier, was able to capture this incredible effect. Just today he has released a behind-the-scenes video explaining exactly how it was done, along with plans for how anyone can make their own with a 3D printer.
If you’ve been working with video in the last few years and are looking to take your post-production to the next level, color grading absolutely needs to be something you consider incorporating into your workflow. DaVinci Resolve is not only a powerful software for doing this, but it's base version is actually free for anyone.
Sometimes we all take for granted the sheer wonder of the tools at our disposal in this industry. Sometimes what it takes is transplanting those tools to a world a little further removed from technology, and sometimes seeing it through the joy and amazement of a childs reaction is exactly the perspective that is needed. That is exactly what Mark Brandon Smith did when he flew his drone for a group of school children in Uganda and their reaction to it will put a smile on your face.
Jianmin Huang is a fashion and street photographer born in village in China. He can now be found chasing moments throughout the streets of Amsterdam, which has earned him the nickname of Jimmy on the Run. In this seven minute video portrait, we learn how he got his start, what his aspiration as a photographer are, and about his struggles to earn the respect of his family.
Choosing a correct exposure can be difficult at times, especially in bright light. I've become pretty good and reading my LCD screen and using zebra stripes to figure out a correct exposure on the fly, but there are a few more options. Two of them I had not even heard of before.