Stefan Kohler is a conceptual photographer, specialized in mixing science, technology and photography. He is one of the founders of Kamerakind, based in Traunstein, Southern Germany. You can follow him on Facebook, and see previous (pretty awesome) projects here.

The Peter-Coulson Look – A Lighting Exercise

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As someone who describes himself a “Facebook Enthusiast”, I have a lot of photographers in my timeline. Probably 100 are constantly popping up, some of them are friends, while others are in that list because of their work. Peter Coulson  belongs to the latter part, and he is somewhat special even there, because I always recognize his style. Every time he’s popping up I think: Yes, that must be a Coulson or – even better – I would say to myself “wow, that image is awesome” what do you know, it’s Coulson’s.

So I tried to re-create that signature look.

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Save Precious Studio Space With This Strip Light Rack

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I recently moved into a new studio. It is bigger than my last one, so I absolutely had to get more gear to match its size. Here is something I learnt in the process. While softboxes and stripboxes are small when folded if you want to have them readily available, they take up quite a bit of space.

My solution to this problem was to build a Striplight rack where I could easily store any unused striplight in its natural state, while not taking too much real-estate in the studio.

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How Good (And Bad) Retouching Impacts Your Objective Age

A few days ago it started – suddenly these portraits sprouted everywhere like mushrooms after the rain, with pictures of people and a postit note on their forehead which states their age.

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Behind this fed is a new “service” called how-Old, which claims to give an accurate guesstimate of your age based on a single photo. As a retoucher I often encounter this problem; a model still has a few more years to “steal” or actually to “give” to the industry. I had to test how many years I can take of a model with retouching and while this is a lighthearted post, the results were quite interesting.

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If You Want To Make Things Hard, Combine 4 Mirrors, Ground Fog And A Light Blaster To Create An Image

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There are these moments I have, lying in bed, closing my eyes and there it is: that idea that won’t let me sleep. Most of the time the idea get stranger and stranger as time goes by, because instead of being asleep, which is what I probably should do, I get inspired.

So I wake up and there it is: The telephone call, asking if you want to buy four mirrors. A few moments later I am standing with my first cup of coffee in my kitchen to realize what just happened:

  • I decided to build a ground fog machine
  • I just bought four giant mirrors
  • There should be some strange light, probably Light Blasting some structures somewhere…

I didn’t sleep very well the next night either, because I started testing my DIY-ground-fogger.

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set.a.light 3D Is a Studio simulation for photographers

studioSimulator Sometimes I wonder why I can’t sleep that good. It happens often is a big shoot is on my plan for the next day, I ask myself “Is my light plan right, did I miss something, is there something to improve?”. As a child of the computerized generation, I was wondering if there is a software to simulate light setups. There are different ideas out there on the web, some use Blender to simulate light, others tried Cinema 4D. I’ve tried some of the provided project files, but … well … I am not a 3D-Guy, so I struggled with the UI of Blender and Cinama 4D. The I found set.a.alight 3D and some things changed. [Read more…]

Freebies: Get 866MB Hi-Res Images Of Fire And Sparkles For Hot Editing

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Sometimes, when sorting out old crap on your hard drives, you can find a little treasure. You might remember that fireproof housing for my D800. We tested a lot on this day and some of the shots were really cool.

I’ve converted all the files to JPG without cropping them. So these files are quite high resolution and the package is over 800MB to download.

It’s all stuff from little fire, larger fire and sparkles up to “inferno”.

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Turn Any Portrait Into A Snowy-Wintery Photo Using These Free Snowflake Pre-Keyed Images

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Here in Germany, the winter finally arrived and my Facebook timeline has turned white (or sometimes a little bit bluish because “wrong white balance”…).

I took my Camera and high power LED light to create some snow textures with shallow depth of field for composites. We are giving away those pre-keyed snowflakes for you to turn any portraits of yours to a snowy-stormy photo.

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Photostealers, Please Take My Images Or Why It Sucks To Fight Copyright Infringements From Overseas

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This is a sad story about image thievery (again), and why I think it is so common on the internet. It is coming from a personal perspective, but I think there is much to be learned from it about how easy stealing images is nowadays and how (despite the law is on our side) it is sometimes very hard to fight. Being a photo stealing story, it  obviously starts with one of my images being “borrowed”. I was considering my options. Each and every article on the web says talk to a lawyer, so I did.  He basically said: You can’t do anything and you will never see any money.
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