I do a lot of shooting with GoPro cameras. They offer a great size to price to performance ratio and really allow for some creative work. The thing is, the more you shoot with GoPros, the more accessories and gadgets you collect. The GoPro camera is all about getting unique angles and point of view shots, so a bit of gear goes a long way. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fjjiVlmn9wA Here's what's in my GoPro Go Bag, if you're looking for gift ideas or something for yourself, this list is what I take in the field for most projects. Do I … [Read more...] about The Ultimate GoPro 5 Kit
Rich has published over 100 courses on Lynda.com. Rich has authored several books including From Still to Motion, Understanding Photoshop, Professional Web Video, and Creating DSLR Video.
Have you checked out Luminar yet? It's a cool new app from the folks at Macphun and it makes it very easy to create your own preset recipes. With more than 30 filters to choose from (plus blending modes) a preset can go a long way. Customizing Presets Remember, a preset in Luminar is merely a starting point. Different photographers will desire different looks. Plus a preset may work great on some photos, but need a little tweaking for others. Once you select a preset, you have the ability in Luminar's Side Panel to use Filters controls … [Read more...] about Creating Custom Presets with Macphun Luminar
When it comes time to edit your video or photos, the hard drives you use are going to have a huge impact on the performance of your system. No matter how much RAM you have or how powerful of a video card, you just won't get real-time performance if your drives are a bottleneck. Important Factors There are three factors when choosing a disk for video and photo editing: Speed. The speed of drive is the biggest factor on what media you can play off it. Drives like internal laptop drives or bus-powered USB drives are generally not fast … [Read more...] about Selecting Storage for Photo and Video Editing
Trying to record sound with your video? Having a good microphone is nearly worthless if you don't put it in the right position. The closer you can get the mic to the source of the audio the stronger the signal. Skimp on taking the time to position and test your mics and you run the risk of noisy and hollow sounding audio. Here are a few guiding principles when it comes to microphone placement: Too far away. Extend your thumb and pinky finger in opposite directions. This is a good target distance for the microphone to be from the mouth … [Read more...] about There’s No Replacement for Microphone Placement
One of the key functions of Adobe Bridge is renaming your digital media. This can come in handy with digital camera files because they are likely named with a combination of letters and a progressive numbering system.Eventually these names and numbers repeat themsleves. Fortunately, Bridge makes it easy to rename several files at one time: This process is called a batch. The Batch command is a useful way to improve the organization of your files: If it’s not running already, launch Adobe Bridge. Navigate to a folder containing … [Read more...] about Batch Renaming Photos and Videos in Adobe Bridge
I’ve spent the past 2 weeks using a brand new photo editing tool called Luminar from the folks at Macphun. It’s a brand new photo editing tool that approaches the task of editing in a new way. The application offers customizable Workspaces that help guide you through image editing. The tool is targeted at photographers of all levels, offering easy starting points for beginners but advanced features like layers, masking, blending modes, and brushes for the most demanding pros. Who Can Use It? Like all of Macphun’s software, this is a … [Read more...] about Luminar from Macphun | A Photofocus Hands-On Review
Plan to shoot video with your DSLR or Mirrorless cameras? Chances are you might use more than one camera body while shooting footage. This may be to get an extra angle or to avoid having to change lenses in the field. The closer your camera settings the match, the more seamless it will appear when you edit the different footage together. Ideally the acquired footage will match as closely as possible. This means that you to adjust both the aesthetic and technical properties. Aesthetic Matching Look inside the camera and check your menu … [Read more...] about Quickly Calibrate DSLR Cameras for Video
I’m a sucker for camera bags. I don’t think of them as fashion statements, but you wouldn’t know by looking at my gear room. I’ve got a wide range of bags for all sorts of purposes, flying, studio work, street photography, backpacking, and more. The folks at Orca sent me.a new bag to review, which I’m always game for… so let’s jump in. Let's take a real-world look at the the ORCA OR-11 Rolling Suitcase for DSLR Cameras. Is it Sturdy? What I like about this bag is it seems well-built. Let’s go from the bottom up. Durable wheels. The … [Read more...] about Real-world Review: ORCA Carry-On Wheeled Suitcase
Blending modes are an integral part of both design and color correction workflows as they let you mix the content of two or more layers. Part of the reason many pass on blending modes is that they are hard to use if you don’t know which one you want. The truth is that the list can get a little long and if you aren't familiar with them, it can get a little confusing. Here’s a much better way to experiment: Select the layer or layers you want to blend. In Photoshop, choose the Move tool. Press Shift + = (Shift plus Equal) to … [Read more...] about Trying out Blending Modes in Photoshop
Are you looking to get the "film look" on your digital photos? One way to do this is with a nice soft bloom plus a Look-up Table. Select the top layer of your Photoshop document. Make a new, Empty layer (Layer > New > Layer). Hold down the Option or Alt key and choose Layer > Merge Visible to create a flattened copy on top of all your other layers. Right-click on the top layer and choose Convert to Smart Object. With the top layer selected, choose Filter > Blur > Gaussian Blur. Use a healthy blur value to get … [Read more...] about How to Get a Quick “Film-Look” in Photoshop
If your photos are crooked, they can look very distracting If a photo is not straight (because it was shot at a slight angle), it is easy to fix. Here's a simple recipe for Adobe Photoshop. In Photoshop, select the Ruler Tool (I). Locate a line or surface that you think should be horizontal (or vertical). Click and drag a line to measure the angle. In the Options bar click the Straighten button. The correct value is used to rotate the image. Crop the image to taste to remove the gaps at the border. You can also use Content … [Read more...] about Straighten a Photo in Photoshop
My new GoPro Hero5 Black just arrived in the mail and the first firmware update has dropped as well. This made for the perfect time to start testing my camera. I headed out to an aquarium and science center for an afternoon with the kids to test out the camera’s lowlight, burst, and specialty modes. This is a make or break update for GoPro, which saw their stock tumble due to recent errors. The product line has been streamlined to effectively just two cameras. The GoPro Hero5 Black ($399 USD) and the GoPro Hero5 Session. … [Read more...] about Is the GoPro Hero5 Black any Good for Photography?
A few years back, Apple decided to slowly kill of Aperture and iPhoto. in their places emerged Photos for Mac. The app left something to be desired, but has kept maturing. One of its biggest changes was the support of Extensions (or what others would call plug-ins). Essentially these are small, dedicated apps that you can run on your Mac or as an add-on to the Photos app. LUCiD Apps/Extensions We're big fans of Perfectly Clear from Athentech. The tech behind this automated image correction is what powers these new LUCiD … [Read more...] about First Look: New LUCiD Plug-ins for Photos for Mac
Would you like to NEVER lose a photo again? It's possible if you join us for our next webinar. Our next webinar covers important strategies on how to keep your photos and video safe (especially if you make money off your images). This webinar will share practical advice for photographers and videographers from pros Kevin Ames and Rich Harrington. Also joining them is hard drive guru Mark Fuccio. Why Safe Storage is Good Business for Photographers Join us for this month's hangout. We'll be tackling Why Safe Storage is Good Business … [Read more...] about Free Webinar: Why Safe Storage is Good Business for Photographers
There's a lot of misunderstanding about stock photography. This article is less for photographers and more for designers and out clients. With that said, I've heard many people use the wrong terms when describing stock usage rights. Royalty-free Does Not Equal Free Let's tackle the biggest misunderstanding. Don't confuse royalty-free and free. A royalty-free image must still be purchased. This is how the photographer and distributor make money. Royalty-free images can be a big savings because you can eliminate model releases, talent … [Read more...] about Sources for Stock Photos
Last night, Apple pushed out the first update to iOS 10 (there had been a lot of reports of people locking up their phones when updating). I plugged the phone into the computer, did a full backup, then installed. Flash forward to this morning and it's time to test the feature I've been begging for. RAW on the iPhone. It's not magic, but it sure makes a big difference. What you'll need A phone or tablet that can run iOS 10 and supports Raw One that has a 12-megapixel sensor, like the iPhone 6s, 6s Plus, iPhone SE, iPad Pro An … [Read more...] about First Test: Shooting Raw on iOS 10
Did you miss our latest newsletter? About twice a month, we drop a great newsletter. It contains some of the top stories from our site that you might have missed. It also often contains a bonus. Maybe free presets, free software, or an eBook. In fact, our recent newsletter has a free copy of both Scott Bourne's Americana book and a copy of LUCiD Exposure. To get future newsletters, be sure to sign up here or below. Email* … [Read more...] about Did You Get the Latest Photofocus Newsletter?
Have you heard about Plotagraph Pro? It's amazing software that allows you to create very cool animated images from a single photo. I had a chance to put it through its paces and really like what I found. It's also a lot easier animate using a device with a touchscreen (although not required). Here I give Plotagraph Pro a whirl and use a Microsoft Surface Pro. Check out the video on YouTube that demonstrates TWO newer pieces of technology (Plotagraph * Microsoft Surface) for photographers. … [Read more...] about Animating Photos with the New Plotagraph Pro on a Microsoft Surface
I'm getting ready for an overseas trip to China. I made a similar trip a few years ago and learned a few lessons about how to pack my gear. The goal was to travel light, but with redundancy. I also knew I'd be shooting in lots of different shooting situations. The goal was to be able to fit virtually all my gear into a single piece of carry-on baggage (there was no way I was going to deal with lost items). Why Go Carry On? As soon as you let your gear out of your site... things can go wrong. From lost baggage and delays to outright theft … [Read more...] about Just How Much Gear Can You Fit in a Carry-On Bag?
For many... it's the camera they've been waiting years for. The new 5D Mark IV has a lot to be excited about (see Levi Sim's rundown). With an expected release date of late September... waiting can be hard. But here's a few things to do to speed things up. Order Early Those who get in line first, tend to get their cameras first. If this is important to your workflow, then put the order in. You can always return the camera if it doesn't meet your needs. Here's the direct links to order Canon EOS 5D Mark IV DSLR Camera (Body … [Read more...] about Want to Get Your Hands on a Canon 5D Mark IV Early?
I just got my hands on a brand new Microsoft Surface. Great to be able to run the full version of Photoshop and Lightroom right on a tablet. Let me show you how to use the pen and on-screen controls to adjust an image in real-time. The new tools in Photoshop really come in handy for quick fixes and refinements. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5JHd6CQoZH4 … [Read more...] about Editing with Photoshop Face-Aware Liquify on a Microsoft Surface
Time-lapse photography is the closest thing to how you shoot as a still photographer. It’s essentially clicking a shutter and making a single image, over and over again…potentially thousands of times sequentially. One of the things I love about time-lapse video is how compelling the end product is. It's just magical how you can see the passage of time. In order to do this, there's lots of things to put together. Essentially, hundreds, if not thousands of stills that get assembled into a finished movie. The good news is, is that time lapse is … [Read more...] about Creating a Timelapse Sequence with Lightroom
To create a great panoramic photo is really a two part process. First you need to capture the images correctly… after all garbage in means garbage out (GIGO). Then the images need to be assembled and processed to give you the best looking image. Let’s explore these processes. Shooting Strategies Before we jump into post-production, let's briefly talk about production. It's important that you shoot your panoramic photos correctly if you want to get good merges inside of Lightroom. You need to give Lightroom enough information to begin the … [Read more...] about Creating a Panoramic Photo
The way that Lightroom handles HDR images is very different than how tools like Photoshop or even Photomatix handle the HDR images. In fact, it will completely change your workflow inside of Lightroom. So, even if you don't think of yourself as an HDR photographer, open up your mind a bit, and what you'll find is that you'll have greater control over the final appearance of your images. Shooting Strategies Here are a few practical tips for HDR images. Here’s a free tutorial on how to shoot HDR — http://bit.ly/shoothdr Use a Tripod. … [Read more...] about Essential Steps to Creating an HDR Photo with Lightroom
I was digging around the HDRsoft website as well as talking to their team, and I discovered a few extra bonuses for Photomatix Pro users. These are some great things you should take advantage of. Some of these work with Photomatix Pro, others need the Photomatix Pro Plus Bundle (a $20 upgrade). Have more than one computer? Even if their Windows or Mac? Don't worry, a single user can install Photomatix and activate on every machine they own. One user needs one license... no matter how many computers you have. (see here) Haven't … [Read more...] about A Few Bonus Benefits for Photomatix Pro Users
You've got to admire Microsoft. The company certainly has no shortage of tech and engineers and they just threw a bunch of really cool things together into a new camera app. It's called Microsoft Pix and it seeks to replace your iPhone's built-in camera app. Key Features The goal of Microsoft Pix is to make it easier to capture better photos and to not miss the moment. Here's a breakdown on how it works. The fact that it automatically syncs with your camera roll is very appealing. People-First – Photos with people are … [Read more...] about Microsoft Creates a Better iPhone Camera
The biggest mistake HDR shooters make is trying to rush the process. Some think its as simple as shooting the photos and running them through a merging application. Others try to save even more time and use in-camera HDR solutions. While both of these options can make a better photo than just a traditional exposure, they don’t really embrace the full capabilities of HDR imaging. For that, you need to truly take a three-step process. Shoot Using the bracketing option on your camera (or manually adjusting exposure), you’ll successfully … [Read more...] about HDR: Is a Three Step Process
Free Presets? You Bet! The team at Photofocus has put together a collection of free presets to help you get the most out of HDRsoft's Photomatix. These presets are absolutely FREE, you just need to join our mailing list to get them. Please subscribe to our newsletter using the button below. Once you have confirmed your subscription, you will receive a link to download the file. You must use a valid email address to receive the presets. Click the button to confirm and download. Macintosh Install Instructions Method 1 … [Read more...] about 44 Free Presets for Photomatix
There are a wide variety of digital cameras available than can shoot video. In this section, we’ll primarily explore the options available when shooting DSLR video. However the core technology discussed is also relevant to most video cameras being produced today. Which type of camera will work best for you? It depends to a great extent on the type of work you do. Choosing the Right Camera for Video Shooting Digital still cameras have recently gained a new feature: the ability to shoot high definition video. Still photographers are … [Read more...] about Choosing the Right Camera for Video Shooting
I love black and white photography. Perhaps its the newspaper journalist in me… but I just adore a beautiful grayscale image that pops off the page. Black and white photography is frequently a misunderstood technique in the digital age. Many photographers incorrectly shoot and post-process their photos. I’d like to share one workflow (but its my favorite). In-Camera Workflow Getting a great black and white photo requires capturing a color image first. Ideally an image with a wide dynamic range. While all cameras are different, here … [Read more...] about Creating Dynamic Black and White Images with Expanded Dynamic Range