Recently, I saw a collection of April Fools posts on Facebook by photographers who tried baking in some irony by sharing photos from a oft-photographed US National Park that they dubbed as their most creatively challenging, all while being derisive about the homogeny of photos being posted by others online. Now, while I know that these posts were mostly written in jest, I also believe that there is truth behind every joke, especially if you continued on to read the comments on each of the posts. As I read these posts, I felt a tinge of sadness … [Read more...] about A Simple Tip For All Photographers: Just Be There and Get The Shot
This week's podcast offers a special treat. We talk Scott Bourne out of retirement to come on to one show as a guest. Rich and Scott catch up about Fuji cameras and cloud photo editing. Then Levi Sim sites down with boudoir photographer Jennifer Rozenbaum to learn about her approach. Get the show here or get it on iTunes Don't forget to post a review on iTunes. Scott Bourne Longtime readers will of course recognize Scott as the founder of Photofocus. We wanted to catch up with him and learn about what he's been up to. … [Read more...] about Photofocus Podcast April 5, 2015 — Scott Bourne and Jennifer Rozenbaum
Since the age of 16 I've competed in Martial Arts competitions. My performance was under a microscope. It was simple, if my performance was great the judges would give high scores and the crowd roared with applause. If my performance was marginal, the judges would give low scores and, If the crowd disagreed, they would voice their disapproval. Their support was comforting but did very little to change the outcome. After the event, I would ask the judges for advice and request they give it to me straight. Sometimes I liked what they had to … [Read more...] about Find a Trusted Voice to Critique your Photos
Data loss is something that I wish upon no one. Those who have experienced this catastrophe already know that one occurrence can easily mess up one's day, jack up one's week, and quite possibly destroy one's year. Many of us have priceless photos of those we love, places we've experienced, and people we've seen. We want to keep those photos with us for our lifetime! That's why some of us have resorted to external hard drives to archive the lovely photos we take, right? But the right workflow matters. Using External Storage There are several … [Read more...] about Safe and Simple External Storage
There are three things that have no place in any business: ego, arrogance, and entitlement. The photographer who expects everything for free, is envious of others' success, or has an ego so inflated that they are unable see past their own faults is a sure-fire way to sabotage their image. It may get them so far, but toxic traits don't go unnoticed for very long. Instead, let's strive for self-esteem, confidence, and humility. You're likely to get more with honey, than with vinegar. This Post Sponsored by: Drobo. A family of Safe, Simple, … [Read more...] about Ego, Arrogance, and Entitlement
It isn't very often that I switch camera systems. Especially after I've spent more than $10,000 of my precious life-sustaining money on crap and gear combined with more time than a grad student would study just to learn how to use it all. My photography career changed ever since, um... I wanted it to change. Part of that change incorporated some interesting decisions that affected my gear choices. Weird right? --There's been a small update to the article regarding an error I was encountering while shooting in continuous high. See the end of … [Read more...] about I Made The Switch From 5D3 to X-T1- Here’s Why!
Sometimes I feel like I am a photo-hoarder. I travel, create photographs, and then they just sit and collect virtual dust in my Lightroom catalog. It's sort of like the old saying: "If a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound?" If we create a photo and never share it with anyone but ourselves, does it exist? Of course it does, but what's the point? I create photos for many reasons, partly because it's a way for me to enjoy and experience things I normally would not if I were not a photographer. But the … [Read more...] about A Tree in the Forest
This week's podcast interviews photographers Cindy Harter Sims about printmaking and competitions. Then we catch up with well-known glamour photographer Lou Freeman. Tune in and get inspired. Get the show here or get it on iTunes Don't forget to post a review on iTunes. Cindy Harter Sims Cindy Harter is a portrait photographer located in Cartersville, GA. Her philosophy for her life and her business is Live Independently. Feel Intimately. Love Courageously. She shares her philosophy on making images that inspire. Who is … [Read more...] about Photofocus Podcast March 15, 2015 — Cindy Harter Sims and Lou Freeman
Guest posts, don't we all love them? Think of how refreshing it is to hear a new voice from the crowd! This is one of the ways that photographers can give back something inspirational, educational, or otherwise neat or fun. In her spare time she enjoys DIY projects, playing guitar and mandolin, obsessing over Apple products, and driving her Mini Cooper. She's an awesome and fun goofball and I've found that she gets addicted to starting and voting for photos on some websites. … [Read more...] about How to Become a Professional Photographer – Guest Post
I, like many of you, have dealt with technology for quite a long time. I can understand how confusing (or even difficult) it can be upgrade or a replace an already expensive machine, but let me tell you that now is the time to upgrade! An upgrade from a four year old machine to a new machine can yield a pretty impressive performance boost if you choose the right stuff! Choosing the right stuff for the performance you want can be a little confusing. So time for me to geek out and hopefully get you on the right track for a good investment! Why … [Read more...] about Upgrade Your Computer! Upgrade Your Performance! Part 1: CPU
Note: Im not a lawyer and anything I say should not be taken as legal advice. Drones are a hot-topic right now, since the FAA released proposed regulations on commercial UAV (unmanned aerial vehicle). Fellow Photofocus author Kevin Ames already went over all of the restrictions and licensing. For most people, these rules won't apply. Were hobbyists, using these drones for personal use. The lines are a little grey between hobbyist flights and commercial flights. An easy way to think about it is this If youre getting paid for aerial work, then … [Read more...] about I’m a Drone Hobbyist … Really!
Some believe photographers shouldn't be seen nor heard during a shoot, they should blend into the background capturing candid shots.Others believe in order to get the shot, you cause a reaction to make it happen. With my outgoing personality, I tend to make the shot happen but I also know the value of blending in and waiting for a special moment to unfold, letting it happen. Its up to you to decided which photographer you need to be for the situation presented to you. Making it Happen During a golf event for an accounting firm, I started to … [Read more...] about Make it Happen, or Let it Happen: Which Photographer Are You?
I received a call from a friend of mine about a month after we attended Photoshop World in Las Vegas. He was excited an agency want to use an image he took at the popular Westcott Shooting booth. He asked me to hunt down the model and get a release form from him. I paused, took a deep breath and searched for the right words to tell him why he can't use the image. He snapped, "But why can't I use the image, I took the photo!". It's true, he pressed the shutter that snapped the shot that took the photo. So why can't he in good faith use the … [Read more...] about Why Can’t I Sell the Photo, I Took It!
A few weeks ago, I had the pleasure of attending Capture Cinematic Weddings with Ray Roman in Fort Lauderdale. The in-depth seminar took place at a hotel just steps from the beach. We learned how to maximize picture quality with proper exposure settings, understanding how to master the speeches and get perfect audio every time, and how to price & position our work to gain high-profile clients. It was great watching some of Rays favorite wedding films to help illustrate everything we were learning. The next day, Rays master class put … [Read more...] about Capture Cinematic Weddings Seminar Review
You have a camera now what? I came across this meme on Facebook recently and it made me laugh yet reminded me of questions Ive recently been asked. Being the resident photographer among friends, Ive been asked the following questions several times over the past couple weeks. I picking out a new camera, whats the best camera to get? My husband/partner/wife/girlfriend got me a camera, whats the best way to learn how to use it? Let me address the first question: I picking out a new camera, whats the best camera to get? To many this question … [Read more...] about New Camera, Now What?
One of the least exciting piece of photo gear has to be a sandbag. I can't remember the last time I was in a room filled with photographers and we enthusiastically talked about them. Although sandbags are not exciting, they are an important piece of gear that adds safety to a set. Common Uses for Sandbags Weigh a light stand down. Counter balance for a boom. Steady a tripod in wind during long exposures. Keeping seamless paper from curling. Avoid a Mess (Add a Bag Inside) Here is a neat trick. Fill a heavy duty plastic Ziploc bag with sand, … [Read more...] about Neat Trick for Filling a Sandbag
You might have heard that Canon just announced two new cameras. The Canon EOS 5DS and the EOS 5DS R, which will feature a 50.6 MP sensor. Really? 50 MP? Do you really need a 50 megapixel camera? What is a Megapixel? Megapixel means that a camera can capture 1 million pixels per image. That means a 12 megapixel camera can capture 12 million pixels per image. Does that mean a 50 megapixel camera is amazing? Im sure the camera is amazing but why would you need 50 megapixels? Ask your self how and where you utilize your images? Are you and your … [Read more...] about Do You Really Need a 50 Megapixel Camera?
Thanks for all the great questions you've been sending in to the Photofocus podcast. This week is a two part show. First up, Rich Harrington catches up with photographer and educator Abba Shapiro to tackle some great topics to help photographers. Then Levi Sim catch up with Ray Roman & Matt Thompson to talk about shooting weddings and making the transition from photo to video. Remember, you can post questions for future shows via Twitter with the #pfqa or send us a note here at Photofocus. The music in our podcast comes from the cool … [Read more...] about Photofocus Q & A Podcast with Abba Shapiro + Ray Roman & Matt Thompson — February 5, 2015
UrbEx and Me Growing up in New York City gave me a very strong appreciation for architecture. After all, I was surrounded by some of the grandest and most densely packed buildings on the planet. However, that appreciation didn't fully mature until I began immersing myself in photography during my freshman year of college in 1996. Fortunately, Syracuse University, my alma mater, had a wonderful selection of architectural styles on display throughout the vast campus, so my fascination with buildings continued to grow. It wasn't until later on, … [Read more...] about A Primer in Urban Exploration
Coming up with a great idea is challenging for me. I only know one person who can come up with a great idea on the spot, and that's Photofocus editor Rich Harrington. Recently, our studio was selected to design a Dream Shoot for LensRentals.com. We could do anything we wanted, a wide-open project, and LensRentals.com would provide all the gear we needed. One of the hardest things for me to do is come up with a good idea. I have ok ideas all the time, but most never amass to anything. Here are a few ways that I come up with a good idea. … [Read more...] about Coming up with a Great Idea for a Photo
Keeping your Lightroom catalog safe is essential to preserving your hard work. After all, your catalog contains your organization (and possibly the bulk of your edits). The Quick Answer on Location So where should you store the catalog? The answer is it depends. Single computer: create a folder on your local hard drive, name it Lightroom Catalog and save the catalog to this location. This is the fastest way Lightroom can access the catalog. Multiple computers: create a folder on an external hard drive, name it Lightroom Catalog and save the … [Read more...] about Where Should I Keep My Lightroom Catalog?
The most common printing problem of WYSINWYG "What you see is NOT what you get" is a non-calibrated monitor. Here is the scenario: You spent hours editing an image; selecting the right colors, making sure the shadows are just right, the black point isn't clipped and so on. You print the image and it's not what you see on your screen. You're confused. When you sent the same image off to a professional lab like Miller's, Bay Photos or Mpix, the image looks great. But when you print from home or print at Walmart the image looks bad. What's going … [Read more...] about Fixing What you see is NOT what you get when Printing
Developing a file structure is one of the first steps in creating your workflow. Whether youre using Lightroom to manage your library or Bridge to view folders of photos, its much easier to find a specific photo if you use a descriptive filename. In my personal workflow, I include the date, project name, and image number. So for example: 2014-09-16_ND_Scout_0001.nef Most everything I shoot is on one day. However, if youre shooting for multiple days, with multiple cameras on larger shoots, then I recommend you include that information too. … [Read more...] about Batch Renaming your Photos with Mac OS X Yosemite
Thanks for all the great questions you've been sending in to the Photofocus podcast. This week Rich Harrington and Kevin Ames tackle some great topics to help photographers. Remember, you can post those questions via Twitter with the #pfqa or send us a note here at Photofocus. The music in our podcast comes from the cool folks over at SongFreedom, be sure to check them out! Get the show here or get it on iTunes Don't forget to post a review on iTunes. … [Read more...] about Photofocus Q & A Podcast with Kevin Ames — January 15, 2015
GoPro cameras are a great addition to my kit. They allow the capture unique and adventurous angles, but best of all are really small. Just like the camera, the memory card is small - newer GoPros record to a microSD card. On most shoots, I'm filling 32gb or 64gb cards, then backing up and erasing them quickly. But whats the best way to transfer the files? I'll give you a hint. . . The included USB cable is not the right way. Let me explain: the USB port on the GoPro is meant for charging. It's a low capacity port built with USB 2.0 technology. … [Read more...] about The Fastest Way to Copy Data from a GoPro
EDITOR'S NOTE: This is a special guest post by Robert O'Toole A new Sigma 150-600 S Nikon mount lens arrived on my doorstep in early December from Sigma USA, just in time for a couple of big trips. This would be my tenth annual trip to Bosque del Apache in New Mexico and the first time I did not bring a prime long lens. I first tested the lens at Bosque. Then I traveled to the north shore of Oahu and was lucky to be able to catch some perfect conditions to burn a few gigabytes with this new lens and here are my first impressions. Weight of the … [Read more...] about Sigma 150-600mm F5-6.3 DG OS HSM S Field Test
There are millions of photographers in the world. A good number of those are hobbyist or amateur photographers trying to break into the business. Others are full-time photographers. In an oversaturated market, how are you different? Why should you get hired? Its not about the gear, or the settings, but your creative vision. After all, youre the artist. . . Here are some ways that you can be different: Establish a Brand The first step to a successful photography business is establishing a brand. Your brand is made up of your personality, your … [Read more...] about Stand out from the Crowd | How are you Different?
There has never been a better time to be a photographer than now! The abundance of educational photography content is just a click away on sites such as lynda.com, Photofocus, YouTube, Kelby One, Udemy and many more. We are blessed with photo hosting sites; Flickr, 500px, DeviantArt. Pinterest, Smugmug, who offer great resources for viewing photos that can spark our creativity. But with most blessings come a curse. The curse in our case is information overload. With all this information at our fingertips, how can we possibly have time to read … [Read more...] about Make 2015 Productive: Read what you want when you want
Yes, I know it's supposed to be "fly safely." This post is about flying drones safely and what to do when things go awry. It is a story that happened yesterday for me and might possibly happen tomorrow for you. It is a cautionary tale that ended well. Accidents, like the one I am about to describe are rarely about just one thing that goes wrong. Most often they are a compounding of circumstances that build until the crash happens. Analysis of airline crashes rarely blame one event that lead to a catastrophic failure. Rather a series of them … [Read more...] about Fly Safe with Your Quadcopter
Developing a file structure is one of the first steps in creating your workflow. Whether youre using Lightroom to manage your library or Bridge to view folders of photos, its much easier to find a specific photo if you use a descriptive filename. In my personal workflow, I include the date, project name, and image number. So for example: 2014-09-16_ND_Scout_0001.nef Most everything I shoot is on one day. However, if youre shooting for multiple days, with multiple cameras on larger shoots, then I recommend you include that information too. … [Read more...] about Renaming your Photos on Import with Adobe Lightroom