Fstoppers Original Articles

Exclusive articles and expert opinions written by Fstoppers’ talented team of creative professionals. Here we cover everything from the latest photographic techniques to advice on running a successful photography business, to first hand accounts of working in the photography industry.

Tips to Create Better Landscape Images

When you are first starting, landscape photography can seem daunting, especially when you see all of the beautiful images others post online. Here are a few ideas taken from my experience that may help you find more success as a landscape photographer.

How Handheld Focus Stacking Works

I always take a tripod with me in addition to my camera when I'm out on a hiking or scouting trip because there can always be an unexpected photo opportunity. And since I apply focus stacking to nearly all of my photos to ensure optimal sharpness, photographing handheld is not an option. Or is it? In this article, I show you how to use the automatic focus bracketing feature of modern cameras to perform handheld focus stacking.

What Was Your Favorite Photograph From 2021?

We ought to always be looking forward to our photography, but it's also important to add some ceremony to our achievements and use the past as a learning tool for the future. So, what is your favorite photograph from 2021, why, and what can you learn from it?

How to Tell a Story in Landscape Photography

It is the story that makes a photo special, and it is one of the base requirements for fine art photography. But it is also that area where landscape photographers seem to struggle most.

A Low-Cost Path to Astrophotography

I’m occasionally asked to recommend a camera to get into astrophotography. Of course, my first answer is to use the camera and lenses you already have. Beyond that, it’s difficult to recommend a specific brand and model because I don’t have every camera at my disposal, and we are blessed (cursed?) with a continuous stream of new and improved cameras. Here are some thoughts.

Why Is Landscape Photography So Intimidating?

Landscape photography is definitely one of the most loved genres of photography around the world but it’s undeniable that it can also be intimidating to many.

3 Tips for Turning Bad Conditions Into Good Results

Landscape photography is defined by the unpredictability of nature and for many of us, we don't have the luxury of multiple attempts to get the conditions we seek. Over the years I've come up with a few things you can do, when conditions don't cooperate, to walk away with unique images.

How to Create a Pure White Background in Camera

Many photographers struggle with creating a pure white background in camera, but it is an essential skill that all of us must master. The good news is that it’s relatively easy to do with the right setup. In this article and the accompanying video, I detail my method for creating a pleasing white background on camera.

Create Your Own Time-Lapse Templates for Lightroom Classic

Five years ago, I made a video about creating time-lapses solely in Lightroom Classic using the Slideshow Module. It was an experiment in pushing the boundaries of what Lightroom could feasibly do, and over the years it has garnered over 175K views, which was completely unintentional, but a very welcome surprise.

Five Reasons the Canon EOS R5 Is Still King in 2022

When I upgraded to a Canon EOS R5 last year, I knew it was going to be an excellent camera and quite a step up from my DSLR, but I was completely unprepared for just how monumental a leap forward it would be. As companies continue to push the technological boundaries and announce new mirrorless options, here are five reasons why the R5 is still king in 2022.

Succeeding When Everything Sucks in Landscape Photography

You got up early in the morning, you hiked up a steep mountain to photograph a sunrise vista, you are exhausted, and then, you can’t see anything, as there is just tight fog instead of a vista. Is there a way to succeed if there were some more and even bigger problems?

The Best Images from GuruShots "Let's See Macro" Challenge

GuruShots is the host of "The World’s Greatest Photo Game” and has released yet another fantastic challenge. Participants submited their best macro photos. The challenge received thousands of entries and millions of votes. Check out the three winners of the challenge as well as hundreds of top rated images below.

The Three Best Photo Spots in Lisbon

Not only is Lisbon the capital of Portugal, its largest city, and a major tourist destination in Europe, it's also a great location for cityscape photography. Its hilly profile offers beautiful views of the narrow streets and Mediterranean architecture. All across the city, you'll find interesting photo spots, and in this article, I show you three of the best in Lisbon's center.

Luminar Neo Gives Us a Better Preview of What’s Coming

Skylum has been heavily teasing its new editor called Luminar Neo for many months, and today, I received another working preview of the app, available on Windows and Mac platforms. The new version seems to run a little faster than the last preview, and it is fully native to Apple silicon. I tested it on my 16" MacBook Pro with the M1 Max chipset. The release version will be faster, but Neo was editing at a good clip.

Is This the Year To Start Selling Your Photography?

When you are first starting with photography and developing your skills, it can be hard to know when and if to start pursuing selling your work as art prints. Is this the year you give it a try?

Are You Guilty of This Very Common Mistake When You Shoot New Places?

When you photograph a place for the first time, it's thrilling. You might have been planning it for months or years in advance, so when it finally comes to fruition, you can often get overexcited and forget some very important things once you start shooting. Here's one very common error that you should avoid.

Small Things Make a Big Difference: Why Smallrig’s L-Bracket Is My Favorite

The L-bracket is a pretty simple idea: have a way of mounting your camera vertically or horizontally to the tripod. Between that simple idea and the actual product, however, is a big difference in execution. I recently tried out Smallrig’s L-bracket for the Nikon Z6 and Z7 series, and I was really impressed by how it elevates that fundamental concept to accessory perfection.

A Quick Guide to Creating Portraits

It is common to see family members using their phones to take photographs at family events. Often these images aren’t memorable because of poor composition and bad lighting. Here’s an easy lighting setup you can use to create professional-quality photographs.

Finding Your Own Photographic Style, and Why It’s So Important

Should you think more about having a coherent and distinctive style to your photography? If you want to raise your game, then finding your own look is imperative. There's one surefire way of developing that. However, some big obstacles will try to trip you up along the way.

It’s Not About the Camera, It’s About Who’s Pressing the Shutter

I can think of so many times throughout my career where I have drooled over that latest camera release or that most recent lens that my brain convinces me that I simply have to have. Realistically, though, what photographer out there hasn't done that at least once in their career?

Which Program Handles Sony Raw Files Better, Lightroom or Capture One?

Sony cameras have long been criticized for their color science. The notion is that Sony cameras produce unflattering colors, especially for skin tones. This claim seems to be leaning towards raw files processed in Lightroom. Capture One is generally recommended, so, let's find out which of the two software is the better option for Sony raw files.

Strengthen Your Eyesight With This Simple Daily Routine

As photographers, our perception of the world around us is our most important tool, and our only interface to the visible world. There's much to be said about reducing screen-time, but it may not be practical for everyone. Instead, here's another way to relieve your eyes; with a simple daily routine.

Focal Length And Your Portfolio

I recently parted ways with my Nikon Z 24-200mm f4-6.3, not because it's a bad lens and not up to the job, but simply because it didn't fit in with my portfolio. Or should I say didn't feature heavily in my portfolio, if at all.

Is It Colder in Color?

Non-photographers often complain about black and white images: they’re dated, they’re just a gimmick, or they’re elitist and boring. These are personal preferences; however, we live in a color world, so you can't discount that black and white images can create a disconnect for modern viewers. To bring history alive, is colorization a solution?

Five Great Photo Spots on Madeira

With its cliffs, spectacular mountains, and moody forests, Madeira is a dream destination for landscape photographers. It's a relatively small volcanic island, and you can drive from one end to the other in about an hour. So, wherever you stay on the island, you'll have various photo spots within reach. In this article, I show you five of the best.

How to Create Hard Shadows and Soft Shadows in Your Photography

Did you know studies have shown that viewers form an opinion of people within 1/10th of a second of seeing them? In a similar way, viewers judge brands with a cursory glance. Brands rely on design elements such as color, shape, line, and font to communicate their identity and values.

How to Create Dramatic Headshots With Three Lights, One Light at a Time

Creating dramatic headshots using multiple lights doesn't have to be difficult. One of the best ways to become proficient at using a three-light setup is by building it one light at a time. In this article and the accompanying video, I will demonstrate how you can easily create dramatic headshots and portraits using a key light, kicker light, and fill light.

The One Technique Everyone Should Be Talking About

Edward Weston began his career making soft, almost out-of-focus images that emphasized patterns and light. After a trip to Mexico in the 1920s, he decided that photography was really about details and realistic depictions of the world. He made a complete turnaround in his work and began making work that was simple and focused on tones and textures. He got so into "straight" photography that he didn’t even believe in cropping his images.

Is There a New King of Photoshop and Lightroom Performance?

The reviews on Intel’s 12th Gen Core desktop processors, named Alder Lake, have all come in, and the results are surprising. Whether you’re looking to upgrade your computer or just want to stay up to date on tech trends, you’ve got to see how these chips performed.

The Best Way to Hashtag for Instagram

Using hashtags is still one of the best ways to get new eyes on your content regardless of what social media platform you are using. This method will save you time and change how you apply hashtags forever.

The 120-Year-Old Argument Against Gear

Alfred Stieglitz’s influence on photography is incomparable. Hailed as the "father of pictorialism," he not only helped define the movement but helped forward photography’s place in a broader art context.

Why the S1R Is Still One of the Best Cameras for Landscape Photographers

Though the Panasonic Lumix S1R remains a dark-horse contender among its full frame mirrorless competitors, I believe Panasonic made a strong entry into the market that is still worth considering over the more established and up-to-date competition. Check out this article to learn about some interesting features that the S1R has to offer for landscape photographers.

How a Black Mist Filter Can Make Your Videos More Cinematic

Well, we've made it to the final video in Elia Locardi's eight-part video series on using filters for landscape photography. In this final episode, we will take a look at the new Nisi Black Mist filter set and how it can be used to improve your landscape photos and videos. Make sure you enter the final contest to win a set of your own.