Fstoppers Original Articles

How to Constructively Critique a Photographer’s Work

As an aspiring photographer, it eventually becomes obvious that likes on Facebook or comments such as “Beautiful work Kiddo!” from your mother aren’t exactly providing an objective evaluation of your talent. Constructive feedback from others in your field is something that everyone can benefit from at times, even as a professional. The problem is, most of us don’t take criticism very well especially when it comes to something we’ve poured our heart into and may actually love on a personal level.

Boost Your Pet Photography Business by Working With a Rescue Group

These days, more and more of us are investing in professional portraits of our pets. What better way to forever preserve the memory of our nonhuman family members? If you offer pet photography either as one of your services or as your sole specialty, you can appreciate that photographing animals professionally brings forth a unique set of challenges and opportunities. Delving into animal photography opens the doors to channels for marketing and networking that are specific to pets. As a dog photographer, one activity that has given a huge boost to my business is volunteering my services to a local dog rescue organization.

Working With Photography and Videography Clients Who Appreciate Creativity

I've been shooting real estate for about two years now. Today, I am shooting for my company, Simply Visual Productions, and another company, Jump Visual, which has been around for many years, and because of them, I have learned so much about working in this field. I have shot hundreds of homes and met many new people and worked with them to create photos that sell a home or space. I think it is funny that I do this because when someone thinks photography, I feel like real estate photography is the last thing they would think of. Aside from the photography aspect, I see aerial and video becoming more and more popular, which is one reason I have such an interest in it.

How Photographing Skylines Made Me a Better Photographer

Photographing skylines and cityscapes takes a lot of technical ability, both in knowing what gear to bring and how to capture a variety of lighting conditions. Many photographers have made careers out of perfecting this genre, taking it even further by mixing in astrophotography, light painting, and even motion. Whether you're looking to explore your own backyard or get more out of traveling, shooting skylines can open your eyes to new possibilities no matter what type of photography you shoot.

Tips to Get Your Wedding Photography Published

It happens to me all too often: a bride or groom sees our wedding work work in a bridal magazine or blog and tells me that it's been a dream of theirs to be featured and can't wait for me to submit the wedding. Often, this happens far before her wedding has been shot; I'm talking first meeting and boom, "I can't wait to be in a magazine." As professional photographers, obviously, we know there is much more to getting featured than the desire itself. At this moment, when my client gushes about their dreams of being published, I see this as an opportunity to educate them and help get their wedding that much closer to being featured.

Four Secrets for Shooting a Compelling Music Video on a Tight Budget

As a music video filmmaker, the juggling of tight budgets is a regular occurrence. Emerging artists often survive on a shoestring, so commissioning a music video director for their latest release is often their largest cost in their marketing campaign. Once a concept is decided, it then becomes my job to provide high production value for my client. Using one of my latest projects, "Youth Club - Sorry," as an example, here are the four secrets that will help create compelling music videos.

Maximize Boudoir Posing: Fluid Movements Without Ever Getting off the Floor

One of the biggest challenges I hear from new boudoir photographers is how to move successfully and fluidly from one pose to the next during a session. Posing should not be stiff and rigid, or the end result will reflect the forced feeling. The last portion of all my boudoir sessions is on the floor. Quite frankly, that is where all the upsale images come from by maximizing the use of one pose into multiple selections.

Part 2: How to Have Only Dream Projects in Your Photography Portfolio

Remember that first time you've looked at those dream portfolios? How did they happen? You've probably compared your portfolio against those and thought, "How would clients put their trust in me for something as big as that?" The hard truth is, those dream-portfolio photographers had a great website issued by the hospital they were given birth at. Face it, if you don't have your portfolio website printed on your birth certificate, you won't ever have one. Of course that's not true.

15 Inspiring Places Travel Photographers Should Visit

Travel photographers seem to be going crazy for far-flung locations on Instagram. If you follow a bunch of them, you are bound to come across stunning photographs of some amazing places they’ve been making images of. It seems like everyone has caught the Scandinavian bug, seeing so many photographers flocking to Iceland or the Faroe Islands to capture those breathtaking landscapes. In this article, I will list the most popular locations for travel photographers on Instagram, but also include a few places you may not have considered.

The iPhone 7 Plus Fashion Photoshoot: Blondes, Brunettes, and Bokeh

What happens when you throw together a shoot with two fashion models, one photographer, and an iPhone? We went ahead and found out for ourselves. As a professional photographer, the most popular question I receive on a daily basis is, "What camera and lens do you shoot with?" I also hear "My camera isn't good. What camera and lens should I buy?" When asked that question, I always make sure to emphasize that great light trumps great gear every time. That inspired me to do put down the D810 and practice what I preach. And what better way than to break in my iPhone 7 Plus?

Getting The Most Of 5-in-1 Collapsible Reflector Kits

There is one versatile and affordable modifier called 5-in-1 collapsible reflector kit that practically every photographer owns. As the name implies, it can be put to use five ways, but have you ever tried all the possible usage variations of this babe? Usually, it is a double-sided material with four different finishes: gold, silver, black, and white, which is zipped around a white scrim frame. We are going to analyze the characteristics of each side and see how and when to use them to our advantage, and trust me it is going to be more than five usage tips.

Five Things Fuji Missed With the X-T2
Fujifilm recently released the updated version of their flagship DSLR-styled mirrorless body, the X-T2. There are plenty of great things to be said about this new body. However, after a few weeks of using it, I'd like to share with you and Fuji a few things I'd like to see fixed or changed in the next firmware update.

Boost Your Photography Income by Cultivating Your Brand's Perceived Value

When it comes to price, everything we think we know is an illusion. Consumers assume that paying handsomely for something magically increases the product’s quality. We can acknowledge that there is a logical fallacy in this thinking. By understanding perceived value and the nature of the psychological construct, photographers can climb into the mind of a consumer, reflect on their marketing practices, and transform their new understanding into increased revenue.

Lighting From the Outside In: Experiment With Lighting to Get Your Photographic Creativity Flowing

We've all done it. We find a location for our subject, place them, set up a light pointing down at 45 degrees, check the light power, and start shooting. When shooting an environmental portrait, there's a lot to worry about. From interacting with your subject to hauling equipment and making sure makeup and wardrobe are on point, it's easy to fall back on our go-to lighting setups. As an exercise, though, let's concentrate on ancillary lighting first and see how it can drive the narrative of our shot.

The Sensible Minimalism of Mauritian Photographer Karen Pang

How do you recognize a talent? How do you predict if someone in the photography industry will become a good professional when they are just starting? Is it the level of the aesthetics you see in someone’s work, a sense of perfect balance in their compositions, their speed of mastering technical aspects of certain art, or do you just feel it in your gut? It might be an amalgamation of all, but the young Mauritian Photographer Karen Pang sure has it all, and I feel privileged to have spotted her right at the start of her career and watched her growth throughout the years.

How to Convince Amazing Talent to Model for You

Joe McNally once said: "the easiest way to take better photos is to point your camera in the direction of more interesting subjects." One of the most common challenges photographers face is finding incredible people to work with. There is a misconceived belief out in the world that convincing amazing talent to step in front of your camera is actually really terrifying and hard. Fantastic talent is always looking for the opportunity to create new images to toss onto social media, and thus is always looking for great new photographers to work with.

Is the Career of a Professional Photographer Getting Harder? Complete this Research Survey and Help Shed Light on the Question

Photography as a sector has been affected by shifting technology as much as – if not more than – any other industry. The biggest change is undoubtedly the availability of cameras compared to 50 years ago, with almost every human in the Western world having a camera within arm’s reach every waking second. This is met with nothing but doom and gloom by the commentators on the professional photography industry, but is all that negativity justified?

Playing Vice-Versa: Models Give Advice to Photographers

Whenever I am working with models on a shoot, I always have their best interests at heart. You may say I care too much about my models, but I am alright with that. No one badmouths a caring photographer. I have seen firsthand how some models are treated badly on set and it saddens me to see how bad attitude from photographers can ruin the photographer-model relationship and also lead to bad photos. Knowing how to build a relationship upon meeting your model and engaging in a photoshoot with the latter is a must and I asked a couple of models for advice to write this article.

How to Use a Big-Brand Strategy as a Beginner Photographer

If you take a look back at Ikea's marketing catalog used to showcase their new products and looks for the season, there was a time where they decided to use images displaying only the products and Ikea-styled sets with no human intervention or interaction. At one stage these images were computer generated and rendered to make a simulated environment look as perfect and clinical as possible.

Five Reasons to Raise Your Portrait Photography Prices

You get what you pay for. In most cases, this saying rings true. However, there is another narrative playing out in the photographic world. This other, rather untold story has a central character getting much, much more than what they pay for. When it comes to portrait photography, clients are reaping rewards from photographers who are unwilling or too fearful to raise their prices. There comes a time when something other than a photographer’s livelihood must give.