Angle Grinders And Sparks Make For Manly Photo Shoot Special Effect

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As a former software engineer I can completely relate to the need SmugMug programmer Ryan Doherty had do build and drive LeMons cars to let out some of the cubical fever amassed during the day.

But how to you take the dissonance between (daytime) programming and (nighttime) car-havoc-ing? Photographer Benjamin Von Wong spent a night in a car shop with Ryan, a LeMons car, some angle grinders a bunch of Broncolor strobes and a Mamiya Leaf to show that excitement.

Interestingly the first thing Ben has to say has to do with the criticality of gear in his vision:

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DeNoising Vidoe: Neat Video vs. Denoiser II

When it comes to noise in photos, we are pretty accustomed to using DeNoising tools. When it comes to video, there are similar options that apply that same logic to footage, rather than to a single frame.

The folks over at Film Riot took two of the more popular options, Neat Video and Denoiser II (both at about $100) for a test drive and compare the results. Ryan talks about a third plugin called Dark Energy which he says surpasses them both, but sadly, it fell of the comparison for costing $100 more.

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[Photokina 2014] Rosco Updates Strobist Gel Pack To Be Bigger, Better and More Organized

A few years back Rosco were faced with a problem. With the rise of off camera flash use, many photographers discovered the free Rosco sample gel pack. What began as a service for studio owners and stage managers, soon turned into an “unlimited” supply of gel packs for photographer. Of course being a business Rosco could not continue and supply the world with free gels (impacting both their own operation and creating a shortage with paying customers). Rosco dealt with this situation pretty cleverly, creating the Strobist Gel Pack along with David Hobby. It was a very cool kit at a very affordable (~$10) price. It was one of those things that never left my camera bag (we did a short fun review here) we reviewed it here (and here).

While the kit was a great solution to a real problem, it was not a polished product. And this is what Rosco are fixing today. We met Frank Lambrechts, product manager for Rosco and he explains the change for us. Rosco Gel Packs are what strobist kit what might have been Rosco had more time to think about a solution rather than being overwhelmed by demand and needing to come up with a quick solution to satisfy the market. [Read more...]

Frugality Works! Using an iPhone and an IKEA Lamp For Scanning Film Negatives

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Photographer Kasper Vandermaesen is shooting film. That means that his process actually involves chemicals and a lab visit each time a roll is done. For viewing purposes, however, Kaper has his lab scan the film and deliver a digital file.

Unfortunately, on his last visit to the lab, they skipped one of the photographs while scanning and being such a lovely frame, Kasper did not give it up.

It is this kind of stuff that makes new technology interesting, to see how it interacts with whatever’s out there. Kasper used an IKEA lamp and his iPhone to “scan” the photo.

Here is another interesting bit, Kasper went from digital to film, as he tells the Phoblographer:

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A Rare ‘Little Planet’ Photograph Featuring The Aurora and The Milky Way

© Fotograf Göran Strand

We have seen many Little Planet photos before, but this little plant is one of the best I’ve seen of our little planet. Photographer Göran Strand took this photo around the autumnal equinox night (September 24th) over Lake Storsjön in Jämtland, Sweden.

This specific time of the year is more prone to Geomagnetic storms (and thereby to Northern lights). Göran’s took a 360° panorama with the Milky Way correctly exposed in the east sky and the Aurora reflecting in the lake to the north. Here is the twist though, before doing the little planet conversion, Göran flipped the photo, putting the skies at the center and the land as the perimeter.

You can follow more of Göran’s work on his website, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

[Aurora and Milky Way in a Little Sky | Göran Strand via APOD]

Camera51 App Claim They Crammed All Compositional Info Into An App That Tell You How To Shoot

I was wondering when something like this will pop up. An app that not only shares information about photography, but also tells you how to shoot. Camera51 is just that. An app that tells you how to shoot to get better photos.

I am really not sure what I think about this kind of technology, on one hand smartphone photographers do sometimes spray and pray, but on the other, I am not sure I am comfortable with the idea of letting an app telling me how to shoot.

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The Mamiya Hero 3+ Is a Gopro Hero Retrofitted in a Mamiya Ruby

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Flickr user Hannu Ilkka was one of the few who were not excited by the new GoPro Hero4 announcement. In fact Hannu is more of a retro camera kind of photographer.

I guess this could be the only reason why Hannu retrofitted a GoPro Hero 3+ inside a 35mm Mamiya Ruby. Using a set of levers and studs, Hannu jas the Mamia buttons control the start/stop, wifi and selection buttons of the GoPro, and a small window int the Mamia body allows peeking into the gopro LCD.

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How To Tell A Good Battery From A Dead One? Bounce It!

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Batteries are a drag. They are loaded or unloaded, dead or alive and generally just always find their way out of their boxes and into to your bags floor, where they sit quietly and rot and destroy the bag…

Our usual recommendation is to use rechargeable batteries as default, but I always carry an extra set of Alkaline batteries as spare as well.

Engineer Lee Hite tested the theory that a dead Alkaline battery will bounces while a good battery will stay. Hite tested a few alternative explanations, including a test to see if the bounce is coming from released gas.

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