If you're just getting into photography, there are several things to consider when buying a camera. Why do you want a camera in the first place, and what's drawing you toward photography? While the question of "which camera should I buy?" may be a simple one, the answer is anything but. What to Ask Yourself Once you've decided you want to get into photography, it's good to know what you like to photograph, and how you like to do so. For instance, do you enjoy capturing scenes on the street? Are you the person at the restaurant table that … [Read more...] about Answering the Question, Which Camera Should I Buy?
When shooting a photograph, I often feel that I am creating a single frame from a movie. The star of the movie is the subject. With the use of backdrops, light, a ladder and a Venetian Blind I have created an effect and a mood. In this article, I am sharing examples of the use of colors and lighting to create different visual effects. This set is from my Creative Lighting Workshop in Boston on April 22, 2018. I had 2 completely different lighting setups right next to each other. How the Lighting Was Created Model Valentina Beli … [Read more...] about Creating Effect and Mood with Light
Guitarist, singer, and photographer Ken Susi of the band, "Unearth", dropped by the Photographic Test Kitchen, for a portrait session. Our goal is how to create a different look by using colors. Creating the First Image In the first image, I used 2 Dynalite Baja B6 strobes, one on either side and slightly behind Ken, giving him the light on his face. Both strobes had a Dynalite 20 degree, 7” grid. The ends of both of the grids were wrapped in Rosco Cinefoil, black tin foil, that controls how the light is spread. On the left side I used a … [Read more...] about Coloring a Rockstar
Last week I was assigned to photograph President Trump during his visit to Manchester, NH. I try to bring all gear I might need on the first trip to the site. Quite often it is a very long walk from the parking lot to the press entrance. Once you are inside you don't want to go back out, or you may not be allowed to go back out through security. After you go through the press entrance, you proceed to press check-in, where you are issued your press pass for the day. Often there are long lines to wait in as credentials are … [Read more...] about What’s In the Bag: Gear I Use to Photograph President Trump
I recently added a Nikon D850 to my arsenal, and more recently, had the opportunity to test it out with the addition of a Vello BG-N19 battery grip. The battery grip was provided to me by B&H for the purposes of this review. What is a battery grip? There are generally two different types of battery grips, one built-in (e.g. Nikon D5) and the other an add-on accessory. A battery grip allows for near seamless transition from landscape to portrait orientation, with a redundant set of camera controls and more battery power. The battery grip … [Read more...] about The Vello BG-N19 Battery Grip for Nikon D850
When packing for trips, I find myself seesawing between my Fuji X system and Nikon DSLRs. We do underwater, street, nature and landscape photography. Do I pack the Fuji X-Pro2, the crop sensor Nikon D500 and my old D800 or complicate things and buy the new Nikon D850? Earlier this winter, we were packing for street and winter nature and landscape photography in Japan. My wife and partner in Aperture Photo Arts is a die-hard Fuji shooter and between us, we have most of the Fuji X lenses and spare camera bodies. This was the logical … [Read more...] about Rediscovering a lens that I already owned
Last December, while in the middle of a shoot and half way thru the models, I tripped on my tether cord and shattered my Nikon body and the lens attached to it. Needless to say, it wasn’t my happiest moment in 2017 but it was my most valued. What Is Tethering? Tethered shooting is connecting a computer to your camera when you are shooting so the pictures you take are downloaded to your computer in addition to the camera's memory card. The camera and computer are connected by a cable, hence "tethering". Benefits of Tethering In this … [Read more...] about What Is Tethered Shooting & Why Do I Love It So Much?
Work made with 3 speed lights Here's the equipment used to create this photograph: Nikon D810 Nikon 105mm Macro lens 3 Nissin Di700A speedlights Nissan Carbon Fiber Light Stand Nissan Air 1 transmitter Rogue XL2 Flashbender Rogue large Flashbender Rogue Grid set Rogue Gel set Click Props "Factory Floor" backdrop https://youtu.be/cIrX4qx8iUE … [Read more...] about Photographic Test Kitchen: 3 Light Setup
Why it can be less expensive to fly First Class I recently returned back home to Boston from a three-week trip to the Bahamas and Florida. It was great to get out of the Boston winter! I was teaching workshops and shooting videos with Vanelli, photographing models and scenics and taking a few days off. Most of my time off was spent shooting. As always, I packed too much equipment with me. But, I need to make sure I have all of the gear I need for the shoots and the workshop! A big problem for traveling photographers is the fifty-pound … [Read more...] about A Better Way to Fly
Our friends at MPB.com keep track of which cameras and lenses are the most purchased over the course of the year. This is pretty interesting to see. Perhaps you've got one or more of these collecting dust in your closet. If so, it's a good time to call MPB and see about trading them in. By buying and selling or trading different gear, you can experience a variety of equipment and refine your kit to what works best for you. I've owned over 30 changeable lens cameras in the last several years, and I don't know how many lenses, from multiple … [Read more...] about What Are The Most Popular Used Cameras and Lenses?
(Editor's Note: Our friends at MPB.com have some really great deals on select used camera bodies and lenses. MPB is a great place to sell your used gear that's lying around taking up space.) Save on cameras, lenses and other photographic equipment by buying used. Sell cameras and lenses you are no longer using at MPB.com. … [Read more...] about Great Savings on Used Gear Week of 02/12/2018
Photofocus partner MPB.com is a great place to sell and buy used photographic equipment. Check out their clearance specials this week! Deals Here are links to the gear shown above: Nikkor AF-S 500mm f/4.0 G ED VR Canon EF 500mm f/4.0 L IS USM Canon Cinema EOS C500 4K EF … [Read more...] about MPB Clearance Specials ~ Week of December 11, 2017
Actually, it's really Black Wednesday! Today through Monday, November 27, 2017, save big on the following used items from MPB.com. Click any photo to go to its deal page. A full list of the deals is at the end of this post. Quantities are limited so click early and save! Limited Quantities--Click early to get the gear $400 off Blackmagic URSA V1 $50 off Canon EF-S 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM lenses $75 off Canon EOS 70D bodies $75 off Fujifilm X-T1 bodies$500 off GoPro Omni Kit $200 off Nikon AF-S 12-24mm f/4G … [Read more...] about Black Friday Specials from MPB
Photofocus partner MPB.com is a great place to sell and buy used photographic equipment. Check out their clearance specials this week! Deals Here are links to the gear shown above: Canon 5DSr body Nikon D4s body Fuji XT-1 Graphite Edition body DJI Phantom 4 … [Read more...] about MPB.COM Used Gear Specials ~ Week of November 13, 2017
There are many lenses emerging for our mirrorless cameras, including macro lenses. The thing is about macro lenses that they are often a very good portrait length, and they often offer incredible edge-to-edge sharpness and contrast, but they are usually not as fast and bright as similar lenses intended for portraiture. I used to use Nikon's 105mm f/2.8 Micro for everything, and it's a terrific lens, but now I'm used to the shutter speeds I get with the Leica 42.5mm f/1.2 Nocticron, and shooting at f/2.8 just seems so slow. Which is the main … [Read more...] about Mirrorless Maniac: Shoot TeleFlorals
Yesterday was Nikon's 100th birthday and its loyal photographers get the present: a new FX camera the Nikon D850. Details are sketchy. We don't know the shipping date or pricing information. What is known is this camera does something no other DSLR can. It makes 8k time lapse video. https://youtu.be/epaRJ3eqKzk Want to be one of the first to have a Nikon D850? Use this link to have B&H send an email when it's available. … [Read more...] about Nikon Celebrates its Centennial & Announces the D850
I was out making pictures with three other photographers, yesterday--just a random assortment of friends--and all of us were using mirrorless cameras and that's the first time I've been out with a group and no one had a DSLR. We took a short hike to a waterfall and as we walked everyone remarked once that they loved how much lighter their mirrorless systems are, which is always a big selling point. But I think getting into mirrorless because it's lighter would be a mistake. It's Not About Weight We're photographers, not adventure racers … [Read more...] about Mirrorless Camera Maniac: The Wrong ( Or Right) Reason to Buy Mirrorless
The Fourth of July is this coming Tuesday. It's America's biggest party and we love to celebrate with fireworks. Making a good fireworks picture is satisfying and difficult. So here are two tips for making great fireworks photos. f/8, 3 Seconds, ISO 400 on a Tripod Use a tripod for this technique. It doesn't have to be fancy. I used the Platypod Ultra with a Vanguard TBH-50 head for all the pictures in this post. Try those settings (f/8, 3 Seconds, ISO 400) and you can't go wrong. To adjust how bright the fireworks streams are, change the … [Read more...] about The Best Method For Fireworks
When it comes to Mirrorless cameras, you've got two basic styles to choose from. The traditional SLR-shaped camera with a viewfinder in the center of the body, and the rangefinder style, with the viewfinder mounted at the top left corner of the body. Interestingly, you can't divide the styles up by brand because most of the manufacturers make bodies in both styles. I'm interested in this because with mirrorless cameras there's the opportunity to start over completely in regards to design. Film cameras required a lens mounted to the camera in … [Read more...] about Mirrorless Camera Maniac: Does Form Follow Function?
Why are there colored lines of bright and dark in your indoor and nighttime pictures? How do you get rid of them? Don't worry, it's not a problem with your camera. It's a problem with electricity and LED lights and fluorescent lights. Fortunately, there are a couple of things you can do to mitigate the problem. What's the Situation? The power that comes from the wall is called AC power, which stands for alternating current. Alternating means the power is literally cycling on and off continuously. In countries using about 110V in the wall, it … [Read more...] about Mirorrless Camera Maniac: Dealing with Flickering Lights
One complaint about mirrorless cameras is that their battery life is poor compared to DSLR's. Considering all that the battery does in mirrorless cameras, I'm actually amazed at how great the battery life is. The viewfinder, LCD, shutter, autofocus, and image stabilization are all driven by the one battery, plus the wifi and GPS functions you can activate. Nevertheless, here are some ways to maximize the battery life and keep shooting and these will help DSLR users, too. 1. Use the Viewfinder The large LCD on the back of your camera uses much … [Read more...] about Mirrorless Camera Maniac: 5 Ways to Maximize Your Battery Life
Most mirrorless cameras include wifi and the ability to work with a smartphone app, and most mirrorless photographers I talk to aren’t maximizing that connectivity and the included functions. The cameras themselves create the wifi, so you don’t need to connect to wifi wherever you are. I highly recommend you get used to using your app and let it help you work better. Here are some of the things I do regularly with my Lumix cameras and the Panasonic Image App. Transfer Photos Whether I’m sending pictures I just took of my kids to my wife or … [Read more...] about Mirrorless Camera Maniac: There’s An App For That
Once I realized that mirrorless cameras were more than capable of replacing my DSLR, I dove in head first and sold my Nikons. Ever since then, I've been saying that the only thing I miss from my Nikons is the excellent Creative Lighting System. Nikon's CLS allowed me to make pictures with excellent light in all kinds of situations without using additional radio triggers or sync cords. From broad daylight to pitch black night, from manual mode to TTL, Nikon's speedlights never failed me. when I switched to Lumix, I continued using my Nikon … [Read more...] about Mirrorless Camera Maniac: Amazing Speedlight Solution for All Cameras
Each year the United States Postal Service receives tens of thousands of images to be considered as artwork for new stamps; last year they received more than 40,000 entries, but they chose fewer than 25 to publish. One of this year's new stamps, the Nebraska Sesquicentennial stamp, is a photograph made by Michael Forsberg. It's a stunning picture of sandhill cranes in flight (at the top of this post), and it's clear that Forsberg is a master of his craft. There're two things I'd like to point out about his success in being published in such a … [Read more...] about Photographer Featured On New USPS Stamp
https://soundcloud.com/photofocus/the-problem-solving-show-photofocus-podcast-january-11th-2017 BEST OF SHOW! This is a replay from July 11, 2016. New episode next month. In this episode of The Problem Solving show, Scott Bourne and Pepper discuss the problems photographers face. They then offer solutions to help solve these problems. In today's episode, they discuss the importance of having the right tool for the job. Specific topics of discussion include the following: -The concept of being "polycamerous" -Working with various … [Read more...] about The Problem Solving Show | Photofocus Podcast January 11th, 2017
As anyone who's been to WPPI can tell you, it's pretty insane. Between the Classes, Expo Booths, Parties, Socials, After Parties, Dinners, and well...everything else that Las Vegas can throw at you, seeing everyone / everything you want too is next to impossible, let alone keeping your professional schedule in check! 2016 was no different, however this time, I was on a mission. I decided to start a new photo project digging back into an old one for inspiration...one of my favorites of all time, Film Noir. As I began casting for this project, a … [Read more...] about Photography Projects – Expectation vs Reality
https://soundcloud.com/photofocus/the-mirrorless-show-photofocus-podcast-march-28-2016 On this episode of the Photofocus #Mirrorless Show Scott and Marco will discuss these new products and mirrorless topics: Marco takes a closer look at the partially overlooked Fujifilm X70 compact camera. Does it offer more camera than you may think? Scott shares his first hand experiences from WPPI camera show in Las Vegas. He played with the new Panasonic Leica DG Vario-Elmar 100-400mm f4-6.3 lens, the new Sigma sd Quattro H, the Leica SL with the … [Read more...] about Photofocus Podcast March 28, 2016 — Mirrorless with Scott Bourne & Marco Larousse
Timelapses are really cool ways to show time progression and I love to create one or two in every city I travel to. Over the summer, I had a short stay at the Westin Buckhead in Atlanta and shot a really cool timelapse of car streaks outside the hotel. It didn't take long and was a lot of fun to produce. https://youtu.be/N7NwnYawroQ What You'll Need Camera with a wide-angle lens Intervalometer (Unless your camera has one built in. I like TriggerTrap) Tripod Extra batteries Step One - Find a great location Just like with an … [Read more...] about Timelapsing Car Streaks at Night
Nikon had a big day earlier this week at CES 2016 in Las Vegas. In addition to launching a totally-new 360 camera, Nikon also launched a new flagship D5 FX camera, as well as a D500 DX camera. D5 The D5 has a long list of impressive specs: 20.83mp CMOS full-frame sensor Unprecedented native ISO range, from 100 to 102,400 [expandable from 50 (Lo-1) to a staggering ISO 3,280,000 (Hi-5)] 4K UHD video (3840x2160 at 30p) only 3 minutes record time at high quality uncompressed 4k HDMI output capability to record 4K UHD … [Read more...] about Nikon Introduces the new Flagship D5 and D500 Cameras at CES
GoPro created the action camera segment. Many others followed but, with the exception of Sony, all have met with limited success. With today's announcement at CES, Nikon enters the fray and brings something entirely new to the table … 360 degree video. Named the "Key Mission" (KM), Nikon's first action cam is scheduled to deliver 360 degree, 4K video, the backbone of Virtual Reality (VR) capture. Technical details of the new camera remain vague, including battery life, price, recording codecs/formats and a delivery date. Slightly … [Read more...] about Nikon Challenges GoPro With 360/VR Capture