Build a 3D Printed, Ultralight, 3-axis Modular Time-Lapse Motion Control System

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If you are looking into a well built Time lapse motion controller, you may have noticed how expensive these things are. An eMotimo TB3 for example (review | buy) will set you back about a grand and a Syrp Genie is not far behind (unboxing | buy). And none will provide full 3 axis motion control. So of course a possible solution would be to build a time lapse motion controller yourself. It is not an easy task, and gladly, Doug Urquhart over at Instructables is giving a pretty comprehensive tutorial.

Doug used his build to create such stunning works as the eye of the beholder below [Read more…]

The Cinematography of Harris Savides

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“He was a complete rule-breaker. He’d light anything to make a scene work, never paid attention to conventional wisdom and did not know from self-doubt.” – Scott Rudin, New York Times

“He liked the blacks to be not fully black, to have a milky, filmy quality, and he liked the light part of an image not to be fully blown out, not just gone complete white, so if someone was wearing a white dress in a window, there would still be details in the dress. He would say the word ‘creamy.’ He liked a creamy image. Otherwise there was no way to tell whether it was Harris.” – Van Sant, New York Times

Harris Savides was only 55 years old when he passed away from brain cancer. Above are a few quotes from the people he’s worked with over the years. Along with the tragedy of leaving at such a young age, he time sadly came when he was at arguably the highest point of his career.

I’ve kept a habit of starting off every one of these posts stating that you might not know this cinematographer, but that you know the films they made. But Harris Savides was someone who never even got nominated for an Academy Award. Admittedly, the Oscars aren’t something that determines the quality of a film (…Crash.), but the resume Harris had on him will make make you wonder why not either way.

[Read more…]

Best Tips for Buying Used Lenses

 

buying-used-lensed-diyphotography-001Let’s face it– photography is expensive. It doesn’t matter if you’re a hobbyist or working professional. We use a lot of stuff and none of it’s cheap. Camera bodies, speedlights, reflectors, memory cards, lighting equipment, backdrops, batteries, stands, hard drives, tripods, back-ups, gear bags, hard cases, the latest gadget-that-you-seriously-cannot-possibly-live-without. And, of course, don’t forget the glass.   Next to the camera itself, quality lenses make up the most expensive component of just about any gear closet.  In an ideal world money would be no object and pesky things like gear budgets would be non-existent, paving the way for me to purchase all of the shiny, brand-new lenses I could possibly want (“Hi, Nikon?  I’ll take one of everything!”).  The reality, though, is that I have to balance my lust for gear against how many meals my rapidly growing 13-year-old son gets to eat each week.  The truth is, the buying and selling of used lenses has almost become an industry all its own.  There are a lot of high-quality second-hand lenses out there, which means you can satisfy your “need” and still save a good bit of money if you’re smart.

[Read more…]

Hackers Recover NASA’s Lost Lunar Photos. Look Better Than The Originals

Back in 1966, the US was on a hunt for landing on the moon. As part of NASA’s location scouting for a landing site, they sent five Lunar Orbiters satellites to photograph the moon. After sending those photos to earth, the Orbiters were crushed into the moon, clearing oath for Apollo, with the original film lost forever, and only a poorly rendered images remaining back here on earth.

Earthrise over the Moon as seen by Lunar Orbiter 1 on August 24, 1966

Earthrise over the Moon as seen by Lunar Orbiter 1 on August 24, 1966

The Lunar Orbiter Image Recovery Project (LOIRP), is a team of self-appointed hackers whose mission is to regenerate those photographs. Wired‘s  Doug Bierend wonderful shared their story with the world. [Read more…]

The Complete Guide To Bulding a DIY Open Air Wireless Internet-enabled “Photo Booth” (with Slide Show)

Over the years we’ve seen our share of photo booths here at DIYP. However, this guide from Mike Mikkelson (who also runs a photobooth business) is probably the most ever comprehensive guide I’ve seen to date. Aside from covering everything (EVERYTHING) from construction, software, printing and props, the fact that Mike runs is as a business makes it a field tested build. Enjoy!

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I had been thinking of building a Photo Booth for a couple of years, but never seemed to get around to it. A good friend is getting married at the end of the year, and I’m am the Official Photographer for the event. In speaking with him about the wedding, he had assigned another friend of ours to create a photo booth. I had mentioned that I could help on that project as I had already done heaps of research on the subject. In chatting with our mutual friend, he was having issues coming up with reasonable solutions, and I brought up additional concerns and options.

  • Did the Bride and Groom want an actual booth, as this might limit the number of people who could participate?
  • Would an “Open Air Booth” be acceptable, this allowing groups of people to participate?
  • Would they want the booth to product prints for the guests, and potentially themselves?

It was decided that a laptop running photo booth software and capturing images from a webcam would just not be good enough for this event. I said that I would take the lead on this and come up with a plan. Here are my personal requirements:

  • Must be able to utilize dSRL Canon camera to capture great shots within the booth
  • A Booth that is portable, and can be modified to use as a booth and open with a backdrop.
  • Built-in Softbox for proper lighting
  • Must be self-sufficient and users can figure it out themselves. Not sure if we’ll have an attendant at this event. (Remember, I’m the Official Photog, and can’t consume my time with the booth)
  • Booth PC would be internet enabled and wireless
  • Images would be automagically uploaded to the internet as backup as they were taken.
  • Can be used as either a Photobooth or a Video Booth.

[Read more…]

The Leica T: A 100 Year-Old Company’s Answer to a New Age

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Leica is a company that sets some high standards on the quality of their products. Maybe that’s one of the reasons they’re celebrating their 100th anniversary today. And maybe that’s one of the reasons I shouldn’t be so surprised by the Leica T; but I am. With a brand new mount of lens and a completely new direction in physical design, the camera Leica announced today in celebration of 100 years of age gave an entirely different statement: that they’re only just reaching their prime.

[Read more…]

Breathtaking Surreal Photographs Taken With A $50 Camera (And 100 Ton Of Talent)

If you thought that it takes the last word in gear to create incredible work, think Again. Ukrainian artist, Oleg Oprisco uses a $50 Kiev 6C and a strong vision to create photographs like you’ve never seen before.

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Oleg was born in a the small town* city of Lviv. He spent some time as a developer in a photo store and some as a photography assistant, but none triggered his creativity. The thing that eventually got the creativity out of him (though we suspect he was creative all along) was a getting a Kiev C6 camera  – a medium format, 12 shots a roll, camera. Oleg shares that the fact that he only has 12 frames makes him carefully work on each frame.

The photos are amazingly created in camera, using props, styling and brave models, as Oleg notes. [Read more…]

Follow Your Passion: Clark Little on Shooting Waves

Wave photographer is probably not a common title, but Clark Little is just that a Wave photographer.

The video above is yet a perfect example on how following one’s passion can lead to greatness. It is also a story about one event can change a photographer’s path completely. For Clark it was a UK magazine putting up his photos which led to his appearance on the Good Morning America, the Today Show and several others.

Clark started with an Canon Powershot SD500 (yea that) and a $150 diving case, and on his story he tells that more often than not he’ll take a beating rather than a photo. [Read more…]

Can Models Suffer From Fear Public Speaking? Apparently Yes

Like so many, I desperately fear public speaking. I physically shake and mentally crumble. I’ve always been a better writer than a speaker with so much to say and no way to say it. So when The Photography Show approached me last October asking if I’d like to talk about my precious Dreamcatcher Project to a large audience on stage…of course I said “yes please” with a confident smile…and then cried for a month whilst quivering in a corner with fear!

Fickle Fame…part of the Dreamcatcher Project. Photographer: Mute Media

Fickle Fame…part of the Dreamcatcher Project. Photographer: Mute Media

So how can it be that a model; a person who spends her life in front of a camera; is so terrified of walking out in front of a bunch of people and being asked to speak? Well, it’s quite simple: I am the muted mannequin.

As a model I am not required to talk nor am I expected to show outward judgement, personal expression or opinions. Of course I am expected to bring those elements of my personality into a shoot as directed by the theme of the images, but I am to predominantly use my body alone to project them. I am a blank canvas, a clothes horse and therefore a mannequin.  [Read more…]

Stock Photography or Just Awesome Family Photos?

One of the things that I love about creating stock photography is that it gives me an incentive to create very artistic and polished photographs of my own family.

I have been shooting for Stocksy for nearly a year now, and a sizable portion of my portfolio are photos of family members – to steal a line from Chase Jarvis:

“The best model is the one you have with you”

When I look back on my portfolio, I see a whole year of family photos that are completely different than the snapshots I would normally take.

In this article, I am going to share a few of the stories behind some of my favorite family photos.

Mother, daughter and dog fishing from a dock on a quiet cottage lake JP Danko toronto commercial photographer [Read more…]