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Nick Fancher

Articles written by Nick Fancher

Use Colored Smoke Bombs to Accent Your Photos

Summer is upon us, which means fireworks. Previously, we have discussed using alternative methods to get smoke-like effects in your photographs. But using flour can make for a messy clean-up and smoke machines require electricity. Smoke balls, however, are cheap, come in a variety of colors and require nothing more than a lighter.

How Editorial Photographer GL Wood Edits Without Photoshop

GL Wood is an editorial fashion photographer who's work has graced the covers of Nicki Minaj's Pink album as well as magazines like Elle, Vogue, Out and Bullett. When you look through his portfolio, this caliber of client comes as no surprise. It may, however, shock you to hear that Wood rarely uses Photoshop, but instead opts for old school methods of collaging, painting and drawing to alter his final images.

List: Top Ten Best Movies about Photography

I love movies. Maybe even as much as photography. Being a fan of movies means I am also a fan of movie lists, because they help me to discover films I may not have seen. Also, with my being a mildly OCD photographer, I began thinking about which films relate to photography. There are surprisingly few that I have seen or heard of. So I decided to compile a list of my ten favorites, in ascending order. Note that this list is in no way exhaustive, so please add your suggestions in the comment section below.

Iconic Rock Photographer Norman Seef's Stories Behind the Photos

You may not have known it, but I'm certain you've seen a Norman Seef photograph. What photo do you think of when you think of Ray Charles? He shot that. Carly Simon? Yup. Steve Jobs? Seef again. After reading our own Douglas Sonders' article on how short the window of time is when working with celebrities, seeing how much Seef could get out of his subjects is awe-inspiring.

Behind the Scenes: Photo Shoot with EXITMUSIC

You may recognize the singer for Exitmusic, Aleksa Palladino, from her role as Angela Darmody in Boardwalk Empire. Well, she formed a band with husband Devon Church, and together released one of the higher rated albums of 2012. I had the opportunity to do a photo shoot with them before their show in Columbus, Ohio last July. Here is what we came up with.

Virtually Scout Your Shoot Locations to Save Time and Money

Location scouting is just one more facet of the photographic process that takes time and money to carry out. It can get especially difficult if you are planning an out-of-town shoot. A lot of times this would mean arriving at the shoot location a day early. But there isn't always the time or budget to allow for that, as was the case for my shoot with Japanese metal band Boris last week. Lucky for me, Google came to my rescue.

Behind the Scenes of Miley Cyrus' Racy Photoshoot for V Magazine

When I hear the words V Magazine and Mario Testino in the same sentence, I immediately think of high gloss, sexy editorials. I think of vibrant colors and in-your-face fashion. I think of… Miley Cyrus? The latest issue of V Magazine sees the megastar taking one more step away from her Hannah Montana past. The results? She pulls it off (pun kind of intended).

Behind the Scenes of a Jewelry Lifestyle Photo Shoot

Last week I did a photo shoot for Leo's Wisdom, which is a company that makes handmade, high end jewelry. The purpose of the shoot was to provide the client with product shots and lifestyle images for their promotional needs. Their mood board for the shoot was filled with images depicting lush locations and high society. But we were shooting on a rainy day in Columbus, Ohio. So we made lemonade.

Celebrity Bobble Heads: Photoshop Win

Photoshop is a powerful tool. In the hands of a skillful editor, they can do a great deal of good, like remove scarring acne from an otherwise beautiful teenager. They can also do bad, such as transforming an anatomically correct model into something that isn't humanly possible. But sometimes, skillful editing can create a great deal of lolz.

No More Re-Composing: Use Your Camera's Custom Functions

I know that I am not the only one that runs into this issue. I set my focal point, get the focus that I want and go to take the shot, only to have my focus change when I re-compose. By going into your camera's custom functions, you can set up your camera so that it will only focus when you hit the star button with your thumb.

Test Driving the Profoto Pro-B4 at 1/25,000 of a Second

Several weeks ago I wrote an article about Profoto's new-ish pack, the Pro-B4, which has a flash duration of 1/25,000th of a second. Well, last week I was finally able to take it for a test drive. And what better way to test an insane flash duration than with water?

Fstoppers Lighting Diagrams- One Light with Pegboard

Pegboard is such a fun material to use when experimenting with lighting. You can change the shape of the light pattern by changing the distance of your light to the pegboard and the distance of the pegboard to your subject. We posted previously about how you can use pegboard to construct an entire backdrop. In this week's diagram I will show you how I used one speedlite and a small strip of pegboard to shape the light in my shoots.

Get More Money From Your Image Library

If you are like me, your image library is full of personal shoots and client images that were never used. Instead of just letting those images collect dust on your hard drives, now these images may have a new home. The people at Image Brief partner with designers and advertisers and pair them with photographers who may just have that perfect image for their campaign.

Behind the Scenes of an Avant-Garde Hair Shoot

Recently I have been wanting to do an avant-garde hair shoot. I just needed to find the right stylist to work with. A few weeks ago I met Devan Aledia Ford who is a fantastic hair stylist. When I told her about my desire to do a stylized hair shoot, she took the idea and ran with it. She conceptualized a spring-themed, fairytale-inspired shoot. She even styled the wardrobe and did the makeup (never underestimate the power of a great stylist).

Five Retouching Tips to Save Your Client Time and Money

Ryan Moore is a professional retoucher. He recently wrote a list of five tips that can help save your client time and money. Saving time and money doesn't just benefit the client. It also lays a firm foundation for an ongoing relationship between the photographer and the client.

According to Moore, "there are many contributing factors in a modern day retail campaign,

Edward Hopper's Paintings as Photographs (NSFW)

Richard Tuschman is a fine art photographer, whose works has appeared on a number of book covers. His latest project, Hopper Meditations, has him recreating famous Edward Hopper paintings in an unconventional way.

When I first saw his images, I was struck by the quality in them. They appear to be a composites, but it also looks like he may have been using a tilt-shift lens. Even if they were composites, I was fascinated by how he found locations that perfectly mirrored the original paintings. Tushcman's secret? Dioramas.

Behind the Scenes of DeadMau5's Vibe Photo Shoot

Photographer Kenneth Cappello is known for his celebrity portraiture, his advertising work for Nike and Puma as well as his flashy editorial work for Nylon, GQ, Fader and Vibe. Cappello shot musician/DJ DeadMau5 this past month for Vibe Magazine, and, lucky for us, also shot a little BTSV to give us a peek at his process.

Never Open Photoshop Again with this Lightroom Workflow

Over the last couple of years I have received more than a few inquiries about how I use Lightroom to edit my photos. The embedded video is a screen recording of my entire workflow, from import to export. It's sped up for the sake of time, so if there is any part that isn't clear, feel free to ask questions in the comments. So without further ado, here is my Lightroom workflow.

Julia Fullerton-Batten's Blind Project Beautifully Captures the Visually Impaired

Sight. It is everything for a photographer. We nitpick over which camera body or lens is the best tool for the job, but no lens or camera sensor has yet to come close to what the human eye is capable of.

What so many of us take for granted, fine art photographer Julia Fullerton-Batten has chosen to focus on in her new project, "Blind". Her subjects ranged from those who were born blind to those who went blind later in life.

Re-imagining Portraiture with Video Portaits

Video portraits, or long portraits, are just what they sound like- a subject sitting in front of a camera for several minutes. I first came across video portraits about 3-4 years ago when I saw Clayton Cubitt's long portrait of photographer Noah Kalina. Cubitt is best known for his NSFW, in-your-face fashion photography. And while lot of the work in his portfolio has an immediacy and titillating flashiness, what caught my attention in his video portraits is the extreme patience and restraint they possess.