The Spielberg Face

One of the reasons Steven Spielberg is considered a sage in the art of filmmaking is because of how successful he is at keeping the audience emotionally connected to the movie. Even from simply seeing the helicopter approach Isla Nublar in Jurassic Park, we’ve got that rush of excitement; we didn’t see anything at all yet, but we knew it was coming. We knew because John Hammond’s eyes started gleaming with childlike joy as he pointed at the island and said, “There it is.”

Here’s a badly-mathed-out breakdown of a good movie: while one half of the work goes into making the magic a reality through set design, visual effects, and sound editing, another half goes into making the characters of the film believable and enjoyable. Though dinosaurs may only have been in the movie for about fifteen full minutes of its screen time, we enjoyed the movie that much more because of how believable the reactions of the characters were.

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10 Steps to Better Photo Workflow

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I don’t know about you, but I got into photography so I could spend my time taking photos. What I did not get into photography for was the post production, the marketing, the meetings, the consultations, the pitches, the proposals, and the networking. Or the countless hours away from my family. For that I could have kept practicing law and left photography on the shelf as a hobby. The things we do in life always look different to those on the outside looking in. Just like my non-lawyer friends were convinced that all of my courtroom appearances were worthy of a “Law & Order” script, I find that many of the non-photographers in my life have a totally warped view of what those of us who make a living with our cameras do every day. Realistically speaking, I’d have to say that maybe only ten percent of my life as a photographer is about shooting. The other ninety percent is the stuff that makes me wish I could afford a full-time assistant. For me, it comes down to the best use of my time. Does “insert activity here” take time away from shooting and/or family? If so, what I can I do to switch that around?

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These Photos Of Old Iranian Mosques Redefine Symmetry

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23 years old photographer, Mohammad Reza Domiri Ganji, from Babol, Iran took it upon himself to document the old beauty found in Iran. He is shooting Mosques , Hammams (bathrooms ) , Symbols , Churches , historical sites , Old houses , Special structures , Windcatchers, giving a unique point of view on those hard to shoot locations.

The symmetry in Mohammad’s photography is incredible and while the places are amazing in their own right, Mohammad’s definitely adds his touch to each photo.

While most of the photography is done in public places, getting ‘pro’ gear such as tripods is usually forbidden. We asked Mohammad how he approached them:

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Model Never Moves In This Hyperlapse Video (And Then They Show Us How They Did It)

hyperlapse_cheungTimelapse and hyperlapse photographer, Patrick Cheung, has just completed his latest timelapse project, a music video for a Hong Kong based hip hop group, utilizing some really awesome hyperlapse techniques. Take a look at the music video below, then keep reading for a video tutorial where Cheung teams up with Kai from DigitalRev to show us exactly how to replicate the hyperlapse shots using nothing more than equipment you probably already have. [Read more...]

Photography: Respecting the Location

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One of these days I’m going to get back into shape. Then I’m going to fly to Nepal. Then I’m going to hire a Sherpa to guide me on an arduous journey up into the highest reaches of the Himalayas. Along the way he’ll teach me his language, as well as the customs of his people. By the time we arrive at the summit, we will have saved each others’ lives several times, binding our fates together for all eternity. Sitting atop the apex of the world (beneath a sign that says, “No Flash Photography Allowed”) will be a shriveled old man with a long beard who will explain to me the sorcery and wonder behind the algorithm that determines what’s going to show up as a “suggested post” on my Facebook news feed.

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Photographing Meerkats May Just Be The Cutest Photo Assignment Ever!

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While shooting meerkats may seem like an easy task, with the comfortable nature of those animals this would probably be true. Here is the thing though, meerkats are just too cute. So cute, in fact, that photographer Will Burrard-Lucas found himself torn between completing his photographic assignment and being commandeered by the meerkats as a human lookout post.

Will explains that while meerkats are wild animals, they have grown accustomed to the presence of humans and no longer consider them a threat. On top of that Will spent some time with the meerkats which allowed them to get to know him and feel pretty comfortable with him and his gear being around. How comfortable? stand-on-your-camera-while-you-are-shooting-comfortable.

these clever little creatures take full advantage of the situation and will sometimes climb on top of the nearest person for a better view out over the long grass. Sometimes they just decide that sitting on a warm human is more comfortable that sitting on the coarse sand!

This short two minutes BTS videos form Will  explains it all:

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Beautiful Natural Light Photography Camera Techniques You Can’t Do With An iPhone

I recently spent a long weekend with friends at their cottage up north (“up north” is Canadian for not in the city and not in the USA).

Of course, I spent a portion of my time with my camera (or more accurately cameras – because who goes away with just one…), and the inevitable question was asked by my friends:

Why bother carrying that huge camera around – couldn’t you just use your mobile phone?

jp danko, stock photography, cottage, natural light camera technique, dslr vs iphone, jp danko, toronto, commercial, photographer

In this article, I will explain two beautiful natural light photography techniques that you can’t do with an iPhone.

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Watch These Brave Children Destroy Monsters In This Awesome Portrait Series

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There are few things in life more inventive than a child’s imagination. From an artistic standpoint, we could probably all benefit from the ability to tap into our inner child every once in a while. That’s exactly what French photographer, Laure Fauvel, has done for a recent collection of portraits titled “Terrors” that show children battling off monsters of nightmarish proportion.

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What Makes a Good Photographer?

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As a photographer and a photography teacher I am often asked the question, “What makes a good photo?” It seems like a simple enough question, right? Any one of us could wax both practical and philosophical over what makes a good– or even great– photo. We could go on and on for hours about composition, lighting, exposure, and vision. We would all most likely offer similar-yet-different answers to a question whose very nature can’t be pinned down– and that’s a good thing. Regardless of whether you view photography as art, craft, trade, or even science, the fact that we all see it so differently is, at its core, one of the things that makes it so damn interesting.

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