What Is Fstoppers?

Right now Fstoppers is a site with a lot of hits and little else. We need your help to make this something much bigger. We keep getting emails from people saying "we can't wait to see your next video" and that is great but honestly we are looking forward to seeing yours. We will do our best to make as many videos as we can but we need your submissions to make FS succeed.

Info about shooting and editing this video:
We shot this and all of our other videos with the Nikon D300s. We had the camera on a Steadicam Merlin with the Tamron 17-50mm lens with VC on. It took about 15 minutes to edit it and 15 minutes to render. The hardest part was the walking and talking at the same time, apparently we aren't to bright.

What is Fstoppers / www.fstoppers.com from FStoppers on Vimeo.

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will you be making a Vimeo Group where we can add our video's in order to contribute on a community level?

Patrick Hall's picture

We are one step ahead of you Daniel. You can join the Fstoppers vimeo channel by clicking on the Resources tab on the top of the site. Thanks for visiting and def send us what you got!

really excited to see what comes from your project guys!

I Think this is GREAT! GREAT JOB GUYS!

The idea of showing how to edit and upload with these new dslr's is a great idea as some of us who are newer to video try and catch up. I myself would eventually like to help pitch in but some of the editing and converting formats to edit is slowing me up. I'm just like alot of people out there with a new video capable dslr, a couple of lenses, and premiere pro but need some help getting off the ground. Thanks guys, I think this website is what alot of people are looking for and think its gonna do great...thanks for sharing!

Patrick Hall's picture

Yes Juan we totally agree with you. Trust us, we learned the hard way. Luckily, I think it is a whole lot easier for photographers to pick up video verses the other way around. If you have a good sense for composition, understand lighting, and can stabilize your camera I think you will do well with video. The first segment of three should be online soon and the others will follow immediately. We have lots of good tips and of course we are always learning as well.

This site looks promising. LIke a lot of newbies out there, I just have an HD camcorder, an iMac and Final Cut Express, there's still lots I would like to learn...

George Zanotti's picture

You lazy, slacker dudes need to shave and get real jobs. What kind of trust fund babies are you? Buying new Nikons, jetting off to Vegas, pimping models, skiing, snorkling - come on!

This is just a narcisstic way to show off your life to all your self centered friends.

Well put Andy. First of all this is our "real" job and my family is very middle class. I created my business from the ground up without any funding from anyone. I have found that my facial hair does not have any effect on my amount of money I can make each year so I shave when I feel like it. As we said in this video we DO NOT want Fstoppers to be all about us so please forgive us for documenting our lives in a fun way to jump-start our idea. What do you do for a living and how often are you required to shave?

Patrick Hall's picture

I think you should still be able to film adequate videos with an HD camcorder. Now the Mac, I'm not sure about, but it should work :)

And I did shave for that video....in fact I have to shave everyday! Lee did you quite your 'real' job and start pimping? I didn't get the memo. Keep sending your videos in guys, we have some stuff that is going to blow your mind!

I have thought about getting into pimping but I don't want to have to shave every day.

As a photographer who is still learning this site is exactly what I've been looking for. And as somebody who has several years experience working with video for broadcast television I gotta say you guys do it very well. And that Nikon sure makes pretty video. You'd never get that beautiful shallow depth of field from a regular video camera. Keep up the good work!

i have the same camera you have, so i don't think i have any excuse for not doing or at least trying to do videos as you do!! thanks, and keep up with the good thing you guys doing !

Very nice site guys. Just started getting into parties and weddings.
Had a question though. I'm also a part-time musician, and I was wondering:
Every vid here has music. What's the story about the licensing-- is it not necessary to license some of the well-known music in the backgrounds on some of these vids in order for them to be included here? After all, some other websites couldn't just start using photos posted here without paying or getting your permission.

Just want to get it right in case I submit. Music does add the final dimension to the story, but I want to bring up the point.


Hey Gip,

We are looking into this ourselves and it seems to be a very grey area. Obviously we couldn't use these songs commercially to make money, however, the music industry has changed a bit in the last few years with regard to internet videos. You will notice that if you upload a video to youtube with music your video now becomes an advertisement for that song (while the video is playing a link will pop up for you to actually purchase the song). Obviously Youtube has struck some sort of deal with the music industry because in the past the videos would be instantly pulled. If the music owners don't mind, then at this point we don't have a problem using their music. We like the songs for our videos and they like the free advertising, at this point it seems like a win win.


I did notice the youtube part, and that's reassuring. But-

"and they like the free advertising"

That's the walking over the gray area into the partially-sanctimonious quicksand.

That's quite an assumption-- if I might say in my nonlawyer and purely cerebral fashion here-- if other sites started streaming some of the content here because it's free advertising to you, you wouldn't like it. They would be drawing viewers, admirers, and devotees meant for you. And the vids with music-- you are using it for profit-- you're building a community, you're crafting an environment, you're assembling a gathering critical mass of content and followers-- all that's a precursor to profit. Profit is good, profit is just, profit makes the world go round. Nobody is knocking it. But I don't think Madonma would like the "free advertising" (ok, maybe not her but some of the other artists central to many of the vids here)
I'm really and truly "just saying", I'm an optimist by nature, not one of those rain cloud naysayers that drain your energy. But as Dana Carvey said ala GBush 1st, "Gottt to be prudent!"

I do agree with you... but I will make a quick point. All of the artists that do not want there music to be used online have already removed it. You will notice there isn't a single Beatles or Oasis song on Youtube because they do not want their music to be used for free. There are hundreds of artists like them and there are hundreds of artists that DO allow their music to be used.

As for others using my work; as a photographer I have people use my work all of the time online. A blog might post a picture and say "Lee Morris took this cool shot check it out" and yes, they are growing in popularity due to my image but I am also gaining from their "advertisement" for me. The Fstoppers videos that we have created have been posted on many blogs so far, many of which are much bigger than we will ever be. We could choose to not allow embedding but we do allow it because it is great advertising for us.

How do DJs mix music and put it online to show it off? How does every myspace page have a pop song on it? How can CNN show the latest internet sensation without paying the creator of that video?

15 years ago every tape player had a record button on it, maybe it was technically illegal to use that record button to save songs from the radio but everyone did it.

We want to do what is right but there is so much gray in this industry... is it illegal to DVR my favorite TV show? Is it illegal to use software to remove the commercials? Is it illegal to invite my friend over to watch my DVRed show? Is it illegal to put that DVRed show online but password protect it? Is it illegal to put it online publically? Nobody really seems to know where the line is drawn and at this point I feel like if the music industry didn't want their music to be used in internet videos then they would ban all of music and not just a few artists songs.

We want to do what is right, and maybe you will be the one to change our minds, but at this point it seems like the music industry not only doesn't care, but they encourage it.

DJ's, I don't know. CNN is a different ballgame because you don't need a release or permission to show content editorially or for newsgathering-- it's a 1st amendment issue and that gives them a separate category.

Recording a song onto a tape is a personal issue, inside the home a it were, not for automatic public consumption, broadcast, and not for profit. When the VHS or audiotape was then rebroadcast in a public venue like the"square" or an "event" for profit (or I think even otherwise) that's when the legal beagles started to wake up. (By the way, I think the same way as you, I'm just playing devil's advocate here)

IT's not illegal to DVR your show as it is an FCC approved product (at least when supplied by a regulated cable company) and it's for your own family's consumption, not to serve as content for hundreds or tens-of-thousands of hits on a commercial website. Putting it online I think is beyond what is normally acceptable. I watch shows online that have been put online, and who knows by whom and in what legally supported context, but I enjoy it, and I don't think of the artist losing money, because I wouldn't have paid for it anyway. Again, I am, I believe, 100% on your side, I'm just reflecting as others have done on this quickly-changing intellectual property landscape, hoping to do the right thing.

And this is not about moralizing, but more about navigating a way for business and creative sustainability.

Lastly, part of my reasoning is simply to hear myself talk and think so I can learn more about the issue, and work through the facts in my head, since I'm very interested in using music as a foundation for these kinds of presentations as well.

It's just that I frequent many photo forums, where every now and then, a thread will come up where someone jumps in to ask how these wedding slideshow all have name-brand music, when clearly the photog did not license the music from Gaga or whomever, as it would be cost prohibitive. Then they give links to some industry group or two where you go to request permissio-- permission that's expensive and takes too long to get.

Yet, it's Gaga singing to Suzie Jones's wedding slideshow. So many chime in that, hey, you can't do that; legally, you have no standing. And then then photog replies that, well, maybe-- but everyone does it.

That doesn't really solve the question properly, does it? So I'm left wandering around forums on a weekend, lost as to what is really permissible. You don't want to build a house around content that is 95% tainted with copyrighted material that will have to be yanked on a bad day (which hopefully will never come).

My main job is sales, Lee, and the way I think is to anticipate every bloody thing that can derail a sale, well ahead of time, otherwise, in my old job, I would have been handed my head by my boss. 6 months of work that falls apart because something that should have been anticipated wan't. I'm just thinking with that head same head.

Bottom line- love your idea, the BTS vids.