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Patrick Hall
Charleston, SC
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Articles written by Patrick Hall

Is Apple's New Final Cut Pro X Really This Bad?

Is Apple's New Final Cut Pro X Really This Bad?
With Apple's Final Cut Pro X just starting to hit the streets, stories about how unusable the video editing software has become are popping up everywhere. Recently even Conan O'brien took a stab at the software editing program when his production team created this funny skit showing some of the new features found in FCPX. Here at Fstoppers we still use PCs and Adobe Premiere but I can imagine how frustrated I would be if Adobe changed many of the UI we have come to love and master. That being said I've heard Final Cut Pro X has some great features; maybe all these negative reviews are just coming from editors not willing to update. What do you guys think? Will you be purchasing the next version of Final Cut Pro?

The Vancouver Riot Kissing Photograph

The Vancouver Riot Kissing Photograph
If there was a single iconic photograph that emerged over the last few weeks it was definitely the "Vancouver Riot Kiss". If you missed the story, riots broke out in Vancouver, BC after the local Canucks lost the Stanley Cup to the Boston Bruins 3-4. Photojournalist Richard Lam was there that night in Vancouver and photographed a couple who appeared to be kissing in the midst of the riots. The couple in the photo, Alexandra Thomas and Scott Jones, were actually hurt and only appeared to be making out when the photo was taken. Today new video footage from the riots has surfaced, and you can clearly see how the whole thing unfolded. Obviously the big question being asked is "were Thomas and Jones part of the protests or just innocent bystanders?" You can read more about this story at the Vancouver Sun, and click the thumbnail image to see the full res photo.

How Can This Be? An Image You Can Focus After You Capture It

How Can This Be?  An Image You Can Focus After You Capture It

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Today all the buzz in the photo world is coming from an unusual tech company called Lytro. A new camera called the Lytro Light Field Camera uses a groundbreaking new sensor design that allows more light to be recorded than normal sensor technologies. This in turns actually allows you to choose your focus point after you have taken the photo (click on the photo to the left). As of right now no major camera companies have picked up this technology for their own cameras, but worry not as Lytro is working on creating a small point and shoot camera that will feature this "focus later" sensor soon. Check out the full post for more examples of the images as well as some commentary from the Wall Street Journal. Do you guys think this is a good idea or a practical application of selective focusing?

Irina Werning: The Creator of The Back To The Future Photo Trend

Irina Werning:  The Creator of The Back To The Future Photo Trend
A few years ago, photographer Ze Frank started an online photo concept called Young Me, Now Me where he took current versions of old photographs. The trend was huge on websites like Myspace and Facebook and was sure to put a smile on your face. Well Argentinian photographer Irina Werning has taken this concept even further by creating images that replicate the scene exactly from the location to the wardrobe and even down to the lighting. Irina's series called Back To The Future is a awesome example of pushing your work into the mainstream by thinking outside the box and creating something everyone will remember (and can partake in themselves). Click on the full post for a few examples of her work.

Red Sox Photographer Michael Ivins Talks Baseball

Red Sox Photographer Michael Ivins Talks Baseball
Now that we are in the thick of the major league baseball season, you are probably going to see a lot more images from the league's best photographers appearing on issues of Sports Illustrated and ESPN. One such photographer is Michael Ivins who is the official photographer for the Boston Red Sox. Check out this little behind the scenes video from the Boston University Today on how Michael captures athletes and creates interesting portraits quickly and on the fly.

What Photographers Do To Entertain Themselves In An Airport

What Photographers Do To Entertain Themselves In An Airport
Okay this video has no real educational value at all but I really enjoyed it. Larry Chen and Joe Ayala, two drifting photographers and videographers for Tandem of Die, recently were stuck overnight at the Dallas Fort-Worth Airport. Instead of trying to sleep on the fluorescent soaked vinyl benches, they decided to create a fun video of them playing around the empty airport while security was apparently asleep. Using a few Gopros, their Canon 5D Mark II DLSRs, and some really clever camera angles, Justin and Joe have made a video that is sure to go viral. Already there is a lot of debate going on about the lack of security in Dallas causing the DFW Airport having to issue the statement found in the full post. This isn't the first time something like this has happened, but I'm pretty sure things are soon going to change. Hopefully as photographers and videographer, you can appreciate the cinematography and clever camera angles. UPDATE: Full article from the guys themselves Link Inside!

How To Trick People Into A Great Pose

How To Trick People Into A Great Pose
No matter if you are photographing people in a wedding, an advertisement campaign, a fierce fashion spread, family portrait, or just a headshot, chances are you are going to need your subjects to show a real human emotion. Throughout my own photography career, I have realized that only about 1% of people can turn on a fake emotion that comes across as genuine in the final photo. The remaining 99% of the population have to experience an expression real time as it happens spontaneously. Jasmine Star is one of the most successful and trend setting wedding photographers on the scene right now and she has created a great video explaining how she strategically fools her clients into "moving into a pose". This technique can work with everyone from normal people to professional models, but where you will really see this sort of coaching succeed is with people who are self conscious and camera shy. Get them to focus on your funny personality or another human interaction around them and let your shutter roll! Do you have any phrases or techniques you have found successful time and time again? Share them in the comments

Summing Up An Entire Day In One Photo

Summing Up An Entire Day In One Photo
Peter Langehahn is a photographer from Germany who approaches most of his images a bit differently than most of us. Instead of photographing a single moment, Peter captures the "collective scene" of an entire event. Standing at just one vanishing point, Peter takes panoramic images throughout each event and combines them in a unique composite image that features the best moments throughout the day. Sometimes these images total over 3000 captures and the edits can take up to 60 - 90 days. I must say I've never seen anything like this but it's definitely a way of branding your own photography into something no one will forget. I'm sure someone out there has done something like this before; what are your thoughts on this technique?

Sitex Computers: The Photoshop Of the 80s

Sitex Computers:  The Photoshop Of the 80s
Every now and then it's fun to go back in time to see how photographers approached photoshoots requiring a large amount of production. Back in 1988 Brian King was on the cutting edge of digital photography with his use of Sitex imaging computers. Well before the advent of Photoshop, Brian was able to piece together multiple images by scanning negatives and turning them into primitive digital media. By today's standards, the final product is pretty comical but this is what the first results of 'digital photography' looked like in the advertising world. I have to say, if a single photograph took this much effort and planning today I would probably have given up on commercial photography a long time ago.

Projecting Your Photographs Back Onto Your Photographs

Projecting Your Photographs Back Onto Your Photographs
This video was recently featured on Strobist but since we've been getting so many emails about it I figured we'd share it with those of you who missed it. David Myrick decided to try something rather strange when the electronic group Glitch Mob strolled into his studio. Basically he shot portraits of the band members on a white seamless background and then projected those images back onto the artists as they wore white clothing. If this sounds confusing just watch the video and it will all make sense. Fresh ideas like David's "projection technique" continues to inspire me in my own work. What do you guys think - anyone tried this technique before?

Art or Pornography? The Life and Work of Sally Mann

Art or Pornography?  The Life and Work of Sally Mann
Sally Mann is an American photographer who has pushed the limits of black and white fine art. Early in her career, Sally captured both real and staged moments of her children's youth that quickly became subject of much controversy. Immediate Family, a collection of images of her children under the age of 10, showcased mainly normal, happy childhood moments. However other images featured her kids unclothed with themes of depression, anxiety, and even death. Obviously Sally's work sparked strong emotions, and the debate about what is exploitation and what is art became synonymous with her name. The acclaimed What Remains: The Life and Work of Sally Mann is an interesting documentary that focuses on Sally's work and how she approaches her craft. Now a praised nature photographer, Sally discusses her contraversal early images as well as many of her current projects including landscapes in the deep south and portraits of her husband as he deals with muscular dystrophy. Check out Sally Mann's bookstore for great reading material from this revolutionary photographer. Click the full post for the full documentary.

Michael Levin: Master Of Black And White Landscapes

Michael Levin:  Master Of Black And White Landscapes
When I first saw this video I was completely blown away. Michael Levin is an outstanding black and white landscape photographer. Recently Michael teamed up with Brad Kremer to produce the most artistic behind the scenes video I've ever seen showing a day in the life of a photographer. I really really wish there was more technical information to this video but unfortunately like most landscape photographers their secrets are hard to pull from them. Brad shot this whole video on a Canon 5D Mark II and the highly praised Dynamic Perception Dolly. Michael is primarily shooting on a Hasselblad body but that shouldn't come as any surprise. Make sure you check out Michael's portfolio -- much of his work features spectacular locations around Japan.

Best Technique for Shooting Interiors: HDR or Flash?

Best Technique for Shooting Interiors:  HDR or Flash?
Have you ever tried to shoot an interior photograph and have it look like the shots in magazines or high end property brochures? If so then you probably know there are two routes to go: HDR or Flash. Photographer Dom Bower recently made a video showing the differences in both techniques and how you can combine them both to create a sort of hybrid image. Keep in mind that Dom is only using one single speedlight directly above the camera. Many of the amazing images you see for high end hotels and expensive properties often have dozens of light sources accenting very specific elements in the image. What techniques have you guys used in your interior photos? If you have examples, feel free to post your images in the comments below and check out Dom's final photos in the full post.

Chicago Meetup Sat June 4th: Sweetwater Tavern and Grille

Chicago Meetup Sat June 4th: Sweetwater Tavern and Grille
As many of you know, Lee and I are currently hanging out in Chicago working on a future Fstoppers video. Whenever we travel, we like to meet as many photographers as possible and share some stories over a few beers (or wings if you are underage). We've gotten a lot of suggestions and called a ton of places. It looks like the meetup is going to be Saturday, June 4th at the SweetWater Tavern and Grille downtown at 225 N. Michigan Avenue. We are going to show up at 9PM and they serve food all night so feel free to grab some grub as well. We'd love to hang out so we hope we can meet a lot of our Chicago readers. See you guys on Saturday...and we will let you know what we were shooting :)

A Beginners Guide To Sky Photography

A Beginners Guide To Sky Photography
Ben Canales is one of those photographers who enjoys taking photographs in total darkness. He also enjoys shooting when the skies are the clearest and the stars are the brightest which also happens to be when it's freezing outside. At some point you have probably seen these amazing night images and maybe you have even tried your hand at a few. Well Ben has a made a rather simple but exhaustive tutorial on how you too can capture the earth and the skies at night. Some of his tips like the 600 rule and how to easily setup a nice composition in near darkness are really insightful and almost makes me want to try my hand at a few long exposure shots next winter. Check out his other star tutorials, and hopefully this post helped you forget about the blazing summer heatwave going around!

How To Calibrate Your Monitor With ColorMunki

How To Calibrate Your Monitor With ColorMunki
Every now and then I toy around with the idea of calibrating my monitor. I know how important color is for a photographer, but as a Jpeg shooter I've always felt that if I can capture an image to my liking in camera then I should be good to go. In the past I have tried a few products to calibrate my monitors and the results have never been very pleasing to my eye. After a few hours of letting my eyes adjust, menu bars and icons I've seen for years start having a pink or yellow tone that I simply can't get used to viewing. Well today I decided to test the calibration waters again on my laptop (since it's not used as much as my main workstation). Many of our Twitter followers recommended the ColorMunki by X-Rite which lead me to the following video on their system. It all seems pretty straightforward on video but I want to see what you guys think. Have you had a good experience with calibrating your monitor and feel confident people on normal laptops are seeing your work in the best possible representation?

A Call To Fstoppers Readers From Chicago

A Call To Fstoppers Readers From Chicago
Do we have any readers from Chicago? Would you be interested in helping Lee and I out on the next Fstoppers Original video? We will be shooting all day on Thursday June 2nd all over the streets of Chicago for a really exciting BTS video I can't talk about publicly yet and we could use some help. If you feel comfortable shooting video and have a Canon 7D or 60D we would love to have you help us as we run around the city. We only need one assistant so send us an email and let us know how you can help. Not able to help out? No worries; we'd love to grab a beer with any readers wanting to hang out for a bit over the weekend. If you are a Chicago native and know a good watering hole, leave your suggestion in the comments and we can set something up for Friday or Saturday night. The New York meet ups have been a blast so we are excited to see what the Windy City has to offer!

How A Good Behind The Scenes Video Should Be Made

How A Good Behind The Scenes Video Should Be Made
Shawn Smith is a photographer from Melbourne Australia. His company Blinq sent us this very informative BTS video outlining how they recently shot editorial portraits for two Ironman triathletes Luke Bell and Matt White. What caught me most about this video was how Shawn gave so much detail and insight into each photograph he was setting up. They were using top of the line gear like Profoto 7B packs and beauty dishes, but all of these shots could have easily been produced with less expensive gear and small speedlight modifiers for the photographer working with a budget. If you want to see how Sean and crew approach shooting triathletes underwater and in their natural element, check out the exciting video we featured back in December.

Monte Isom Uses Nikon D3s For Stop Motion Video In NYC

Monte Isom Uses Nikon D3s For Stop Motion Video In NYC
Monte Isom had one of the most populars videos on Fstoppers back in February. Well he is back with a fun stop motion video for NYC comedian Colin Kane. Monte filmed this entire video on the Nikon D3s with just a few Litepanel 1x1 bicolor constant lights. The final video was made with 14,000 still images to create the final 90 second promo. Below is the final video but you can check out the BTS video in the Full Post as well as read Monte's own words on how he approached this shoot.

Kickstarter Iphone Camera Captures Your World In 360 Degrees

Kickstarter Iphone Camera Captures Your World In 360 Degrees
Kickstarter is a fun website that allows inventors to demo their prototypes in an effort to raise funding for an actual product. The company Kogeto creates 360 degree pano devices, and recently they tackled making a fun accessory for the greatest fashion photography camera: the iPhone. David Sosnow demos how the Kogeto Dot will work if put into production as well as how their own mapping software combines the footage into a explorable 360 video not unlike the Yellowbird Camera we featured last year. I know many of you will say this sort of thing is pretty gimmicky but I think there is a ton of potential for this sort of videography in events, weddings, action sports, etc. Check out this 360 video of Muse playing last year. I can only imagine what people would do having this technology in their phone.

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