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Chris Knight
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Articles written by Chris Knight

Coty Tarr Beautifully Captures Olympic Bobsledders in Training

In November of last year, Coty Tarr traveled to Lake Placid in Upstate New York to document the US Bobsled team as they practiced and prepared for upcoming competitions. Coty, as per usual, has not only photographed these incredible athletes and the work that goes into this level of training, but he's done so gorgeously.

How the 'Leica Freedom Train' Saved Hundreds of Jews from the Holocaust

From 1920-1956, Ernst Leitz II was the head of Leica Camera, but perhaps his most impressive achievement took place from 1933-1939 when Leitz and his family rescued hundreds of Jews by smuggling them out of Nazi Germany. When Hitler came to power in 1933, Leitz, concerned for the safety of many of his Jewish employees, transferred them (along with retailers, family members and friends of family members) out of the country to sales offices in France, Britain, Hong Kong and the United States.

Even More Photo Staff Fired at Thomson Reuters

Layoffs of photo staff continue at one of the world's largest news companies. Thomas Szlukovenyi, the Picture Editor for North America, and Peter Jones, the chief photographer for Canada and the Canada and North American Sports Photo Editor, were axed this week in a move of continued downsizing at Thomson Reuters that gained significant media attention during its first round of major layoffs that began last summer. There is speculation that Europe and the Middle East East could be next.

Dan Winters Shoots Benedict Cumberbatch for the Cover of TIME

Two things you can't get enough of: Benedict Cumberbatch and Dan Winters. Cumberbatch stars in The Imitation Game - opening next week - as Alan Turing. Dan Winters photographs him for the cover of TIME. Dan Winters' perfect attention to detail is on full display here - personally building various set pieces and even having an authentic WWII Enigma machine hand-delivered from a museum six hours away.

In Defense of Art School Graduates

What’s wrong with our industry that we are so quick to belittle formal education? Whenever the topic of an art degree arises, there’s an angry mob that amasses, collectively chanting how “useless” a degree is in photography and that the best school to learn from is the University of Hard Knocks. To really understand this issue, we have to first step back and look at the value of art and why photographers are so polarized on the term. Then, we have to recognize that “art school graduates” are not the real problem; it’s the dismissive attitudes toward them that are.

Watch "Time Zero: The Last Year of Polaroid Film"

If you're looking for a great movie this weekend - and you don't want to fight the crowds to see Interstellar - check out Time Zero, a film about the last days of Polaroid, the people who loved it and the few who set out to save it. It's truly a beautiful documentary that will make you fall in love with instant film all over again.

Photographer Criticized  for Stylized Portrayal of Indigenous Cultures

Photographer Jimmy Nelson is facing backlash over his portrayal of some indigenous people in his book, Before They Pass Away. The book (which is stunning to look at) portrays tribes and cultures supposedly untouched by the modern world. But some people are upset that the photos represent a stylized version of these cultures and are not a representation of how they actually appear today.

An Open Letter to Sony, Ricoh, Hasselblad and Phase One

We’re sitting on the precipice of game-changing year for photographers. 2015 is going to be the year of medium-format. Ricoh (formally Pentax) dropped a bomb this year with a sub-$9,000 medium format camera. There are even rumors about Sony and Mamiya teaming up for a medium format rangefinder of some kind. Yes folks, the competition is heating up, and this version of “king of the hill” is already getting nasty.

Photographing the World's Most Dangerous Church

Philip Lee Harvey recently went to Ethiopia for Lonely Planet to photograph the world's most inaccessible church... 2,500 feet up and carved into the side of a mountain. The view from the top? Nothing short of spectacular. Amazingly, the Abuna Yemata Guh Church in Tigray, Ethiopia was carved by hand, and the art inside becomes even more incredible when one takes into account that the artist (and anyone who visits) had to make the climb to do it. Talk about devotion.

Beyond the Rule of Thirds - A Masterclass in Better Composition

Sure it's easy to put off watching a video that isn't under five minutes long. Sometimes you just have to make an exception, and the weekend is the perfect time to do it. In this video, David Brommer talks about not only the rules of composition, but the theory behind the rules we all know and how they relate to our way of seeing. He takes us through the history of painting (which is the best possible thing to study for composition) and how it relates to every single image we take.

Jeremy Cowart on Why Your Story is More Important Than Your Pictures

Jeremy Cowart is obviously an incredibly talented photographer. But it's not his skill as a photographer, he says, that gets him the best work - it's his story. In this video from CreativeLive, Jeremy discusses a meeting with an art director at a huge ad agency. Going through his portfolio, the AD commented that his shots were nice, the retouching was good, yadda, yadda - no epic reactions one way or the other. It wasn't until Jeremy began to show and talk about his personal work that the AD completely changed his attitude.

How to Clean Up or Replace the Background in Photoshop

Dirty backgrounds are something that most of us have had to deal with at some point. Sometimes, all we need to do is clean the background. Other times, it's actually better to do a full background replacement. The full replacement can be as subtle as eliminating shadows and sensor dust or something as drastic as changing the background color. In this tutorial, we go over an easy, but precise, way to do this.

"To the Ends of the Earth" Canon Nails it Again

After hitting it out of the park a few months ago with the brilliant "Eye-Opening" commercial, Canon Austraila releases another one. "To the Ends of the Earth" features Canon Master Krystle Wright doing what she does best - creating breathtaking action photos in epic places. Her persuit of adventure leads her to some amazing locations in this video - from climbing the tops of mountains to jumping from sheer cliffs to freediving under the ocean. I'm pretty sure she's giving the Dos Equis guy a run for his money.

Broncolor Announces New Portable Light System and HMI

Broncolor has announced two new products at Photokina - a compact, portable flash system called, "Siros" and an HMI called the "F1600." The Siros looks to be a direct competitor with the Profoto D1s while the F1600 looks to add to Broncolor's existing line of continuous, high-output lights. Siros will come as two power configurations - 400 and 800 Ws. It features an easy-to-use knob and digital display system (similar to the D1) and can be controlled directly by Broncolor's "bronControl" app. The Siros and F1600 will be compatible with all existing Broncolor modifiers.

BTS: "My First Cover" Coty Tarr Shoots the Cover of Sports Illustrated

Last year, Fstoppers interviewed photographer, and possibly one of the nicest people on the planet, Coty Tarr. Last week, Coty got not only his first cover ever, but THE cover for anyone that photographs anything remotely athletic - Sports Illustrated. What makes this story so great isn't just that it's the cover of SI, it's that Coty grew up just south of Pittsburgh. He's a diehard Pittsburgh sports fan. It wasn't just a cover for him... it was home.

How Wildlife Filmmakers Are Getting Closer Than Ever Before

In the last few years, advances in technology have allowed for filmmakers to do some pretty amazing things. With the accessibility of cameras like the Go-Pro, the gap between amateur and pro is narrowing. Enter award-winning wildlife filmmaker John Downer and his quest to push the remarkable. Filmmakers are putting these high-resolution spy cameras in everything from fake rocks to swimming ducks and to motorized piles of snow... and the resulting footage is remarkable.

The Ultimate Guide to Composition - Part Two: Beyond the Basics

This is the second part of The Ultimate Guide to Composition. Part One can be found here.

Now that we’ve covered some of the more common rules/guidelines that are present in photography and painting, let’s move on to some of the more abstract concepts and theories including framing devices and the ways that our brain organizes how we see.

The Ultimate Guide to Composition - Part One: Just Say "No"keh

Note: This is Part One. For Part Two: Beyond the Basics, click here.

Composition – it’s perhaps one of the most important elements of photography. And with today’s technological marvels in lenses, it’s an even easier thing to forget – especially when bokehliciousis is so much more fun to talk about. Your composition is how you see – and that makes it infinitely more important than how out of focus the background is.

How George Eastman Changed the World

Every one of us, in some way, has had our lives impacted by George Eastman. Founding Eastman Kodak in 1888, he set out to change how people photographed. He began by creating the first roll of film in 1884 - a departure from the traditional method of using glass plates and a sink. One year later, he put that roll of film into the first Eastman camera. These were the first steps of a 20-year quest that would lead him to his most iconic camera...the Brownie.

How to Properly Use the Liquify Tool in Photoshop

Liquify gets a bad rap. Its misuse accounts for a pretty alarming number of Photoshop disasters. And although it is easy to learn, it does take a great deal of time and energy to master. Luckily, Aaron Nace over at Phlearn is here to help. Known primarily as the "digital plastic surgeon" of Photoshop, the liquify tool can also be applied to tremendous effect when it comes to making clothes fit to perfection - and that's exactly what this video shows.