Hasselblad have been a bit of an obsession of mine since I first saw the 500C/M. It's such a beauty and I will one day make the leap and buy one. However, the new Hasselblads are a financial commitment tantamount to a high end vehicle or a house deposit. It's a shame for me as the Hasselblad H5D Multishot is perfect for the commercial work I do, but not quite worth being homeless for. Hasselblad are stepping in to the rental arena to offer direct rentals at less eye-watering financial outlays.
Articles written by Robert K Baggs
In April 2016 I featured a video of one of my favorite places on Earth: Lofoton, Norway by the brilliant filmmaker, Dennis Schmelz. Well, Schmelz is back at it again, this time with The Beauty of Greenland in glorious 4K.
For many photographers, particularly hobbyists, making an image black and white is almost arbitrary. I remember in the early days of my photography, I was the same. I would mutter: "I wonder if this would look good in black and white," and then, I'd try it. Sometimes, it would look better, but usually, it would not. I presumed it was all just down to taste, but that's not true. After years of reading around the subject and experimenting, I began to understand why it worked when it did and conversely, why it often didn't. Here are some key elements that ought to be present in black and white images, and why.
Having used a wide selection of ZEISS glass, I can confidently say they are special. Their weight and lack of auto-focus might put some off, but in the right setting, they can aid to create truly noteworthy images. This morning, ZEISS have announced their new 25mm wide-angle lens, but with a mouth-watering widest aperture of f/1.4. I imagine a synchronized pricking up of astrophotographers' ears .
Whether you're a full-time photographer, interested in making the transition from hobbyist to professional, or just using photography on the side, attracting more clients is paramount to success and growth. With a plethora of photographers saturating the market, it can be intimidating and difficult to carve yourself a slice, but carve you must. Here are five of the most important ways I have attracted new clients.
When I was starting out as a professional photographer, I felt I had to be all things to all people. Any work that came in, no matter what genre of photography, how boring or bizarre, I said yes. If a company came to me with a request and they said they couldn't afford my quote, I'd bend myself in to unnatural shapes to accommodate them, because some money is better than no money, right? I eventually came to the conclusion that this was unsustainable and I began to say no and to quote those awful click-bait titles, you'll never guess what happened next.
In August 2015, I quit all working commitments and took the leap in to full-time photographer. In March 2016, I wrote an article of advice about being a photographer I wish I'd known earlier after I began to scrutinize my performance under the new, professional microscope. Well, time has elapsed, shutters have shut over 100,000 times, and more things have been learned. My photography business has grown in this interim and I found myself thinking about this aforementioned article again. Here are seven of the most important things I have learnt about being a professional photographer that I wish I'd known earlier.
Shooting live music appears to polarise photographers, with some enjoying it and some disliking the lack of creative control. While it isn't my favourite genre to put my camera to work, I do get some satisfaction from the atmosphere, unusual lighting, and singular poses. I noticed, however, that I had a bad habit: I didn't move very much and simply reframed the images using different focal lengths of my 70-200mm. So I decided to take a risk.
I'll start with a rather obvious warning: this video and article may contain spoilers for anything that happens up to and including episode 2 of season 7 of "Game of Thrones." With that out of the way, we can look at how the incredible fight scene of that second episode was created.
Whenever my girlfriend and I see antique stores or vintage markets, our eyes light up. Her eyes are lit up with dreams of bone china tea sets and antiquated woodworking, whereas mine are bright with visions of a dusty Hasselblad in a forgotten corner, or spools of unprocessed and antiquated film. On a Sunday morning in sunny Englandshire recently, my lady-friend and I went for breakfast and on returning to our car, saw a small sign for a vintage pop-up market.
There's something I've always loved about the photography community and in the age of the internet, it's nearly a unique quality: we give constructive feedback and rarely tear in to a photographer unprovoked. It is a welcoming environment that cultivates growth, for the most part. One particular area in which all previously mentioned qualities are magnified many times over, is young photographers. Their successes are fawned over and their mistakes excused, as they should be. Unless, of course, you're called Brooklyn Beckham.
This morning, Carl Zeiss have announced the tenth lens in the Milvus series for full-frame Canon and ZEISS DSLRs, boasting a new optical design that offers "practically no chromatic aberations". Previous Milvus lenses have been impressive, but often specialized, whereas this new addition is more of an all-rounder.
I worry about becoming stagnant. I'm quite sure lots of us share that worry and conversely, most of us will know people who don't have that worry at all. I envy them in many ways; they want an easy life and concentrate on enjoying things. As far as I can tell, that sentiment isn't compatible with self-employment, or if it is, it's so far away on the horizon I can't make it out yet. In my efforts to always grow and always be moving forwards, I invented a minor way to achieve this and I'd like to see if it works for other people.
Perhaps this article is a risk to my career by virtue of being too honest, but it's a subject I have wanted to discuss publicly for some time. In the era where social media is the backbone of perception, it's all too easy to feel you can never measure up. This isn't new information and in fact, it's a rather well-trodden path. Even armed with the knowledge, however, I still feel I walk in to the trap of taking the world that is presented to me as the only facts worth knowing. I want to sacrifice my self-consciousness to do my bit to rectify this.
Two things converged for me recently: an increase in questions sent to me regarding my commercial photography and the unexpected popularity of my bite-sized Photoshop tutorials. Both occurrences are born from the same inquiry of understanding how certain things are achieved. I used to bother people constantly with questions on how I could attain a certain look in post-processing, or how an image is so sharp, and so on. From time to time, I still do. So, I'm going to do my best to make the answers to the most common questions readily available with this mini series.
For us English folk, Spain has been the go-to summer family holiday location for decades. So much so, in fact, that I'm almost repelled by how familiar it is to me. Then, this morning, I received an email from Peter Jablonowski of FilmSpektakel informing me that he and Thomas Pöcksteiner produced a time-lapse of the Spanish island Tenerife and all my preconceived notions melted away.
One of the most obvious telltale signs of an unprofessional commercial or product image is color. The most famous and readily cited issue is color grading, but it's not the only problem and the uniformity of color is often neglected. That is, the even color of the object or two objects' colors truly matching. As always, I will couch my method in the sentiment that it may not be the optimal technique, but it works very well for me.
Generally speaking, losing detail in your image is a bad thing. However, there is a creative way to do so that is most commonly employed in cinematography, known as "crushing the blacks." I alluded to this technique in my recent article on creating your first Photoshop actions and I received a number of queries about this technique. This article will give you a brief overview of what the effect is used for, why you would use it, and how.
Everyone and their Auntie seem to sell Photoshop action sets these days, as if they're the answer to something. I'm primarily referring to action sets which create entire "looks" for your image, but there are uses for actions which are less comprehensive and arguably more useful. For example, I use an action for sharpening my images which creates a layer I can lower the opacity of or mask until it is satisfactory. Actions like these are easy to create and can result in accrued time saved. This guide will ensure even people whom have just picked up Photoshop for the first time can create actions.