The story of Roger Steffens life is undoubtedly spellbinding. The kind of guy that could entertain a crowd for days on end simply talking about all his past adventures. In his memoirs you might encounter the telling of the part of his life he spent working in an army psychological operations unit after being drafted into the Vietnam war, an era that marked the beginning of his love affair with photography. Digging a little deeper, you’d be treated to the tales of the times spent in LA interviewing Keith Richards about an album Richard’s recorded in Jamaica. Or, perhaps, you’d most connect with the time Steffens turned the great Paul Simon onto African music, which inspired the recording of Simon’s album, Graceland. [Read more...]
With the holidays coming it’s never a bad idea to share a cake recipe. But then again this is a photography blog so what do we do? A few years back we showed you how to bake a Nikon cake, then we had some good times with camera shaped cookies, but this project from How To Cook That puts them all to shame.
For Instagram’s 300M users announcement today, we thought we’d share one of the most wonderful camera baking we’ve seen to date – How to bake the most delicious chocolate mousse Instagram surprise cake.
Mousse and Instagram are pretty trivial, the surprise element comes from the fact that the cakes looks like a perfectly normal cake until you slice it to reveal its inside glorious Instagramish delicacy.
[For the full (5 Polaroids difficulty) recipe hop over to How To Cook That]
P.S. If you are looking for something a bit easier to feast on, try Photojojo’s Gingerbread cameras.
One of the top most requested updates asked from Instagram users is the ability to go back and edit captions after their photo had been posted. This simple fix would allow them to correct typos, add additional information, or change the caption altogether. Seems like an obvious enough option to include in an app, especially one with a user base as wide as Instagram’s. Thankfully, in an update that is being rolled out today, the pipe dream of being able to edit captions is finally becoming a reality.
The update also introduces a new People tab on the Explore page which has been designed to make it easier to find new accounts to follow. In an email from an Instagram represenative, it was shared that 40% of Instagram users visit the Explore page on a daily basis, making it an excellent resource to discover and be discovered. [Read more...]
As a photographer, I’ve always just kind of assumed the duties of turning the present moment into the past without ever considering the downfalls of that or, rather, without ever even realizing there were downfalls in the first place. It’s just who I am. I photograph people, smiles, laughter, cries, love, rebellion… I photograph moments, capture time at its most powerful junctures all in the name of preserving that specific instant for future reference. After all, isn’t that what photographers are supposed to do? We capture important moments, how could that be a bad thing?
Then I happened across ‘The Instagram Generation’, a short, philosophical performance film, which opens up with a statement that, admittedly, cut right through to my core as it somewhat covertly questioned the very existence I have come to love as a cameraman…
“The ‘Instagram Generation’ now experiences the present as an anticipated memory.”
Just a few days ago Instagram announced their Hyperlapse app which creates in-camera hyperlapse movies. Quality is not a stunner, but it definitely hint on the possibilities. Here is the trick, Instagram uses the in-phone gyroscope to stabilize the footage.
This is a great idea (as Ben noted), and in fact I think that all cameras should have a gyroscope built into them. In fact, I predict a trend coming in the next wave of camera to have a built in Gyro. For more than one reason:
After discovering each other through Instagram, underwater photographer, Pip Summerville, and model/self proclaimed mermaid, Meaghan Kausman, decided to take on a personal project together. Summerville wanted to take photos of Kausman posing in a swimming pool and when Fella Swim heard about the pairing, they were nice enough to offer up some free swimwear for the model to use in the photoshoot. According to a statement made by Kausman, the entire shoot was a collaboration and no payment ever changed hands. [Read more...]
Instagram’s become a staple in the average smartphone user’s app drawer. Where it once started off as a tool to enhance and showcase your phone photography, however, it has now arguably taken over as a complete social network altogether. With the introduction of direct messaging, the ability to tag other people, and the all around influx of people simply posting up pictures of what they’re doing at the moment, it’s become clear that the app isn’t just used as an artistic tool anymore. It’s become a form of communication.
But that’s not a bad thing at all. With how much potential the app now holds, Instagram can truly bring something to your following as a photographer. What matters is both how you market yourself and the content that you make. This post won’t necessarily help you with the former, but it can definitely give a few tips on the latter. When Instagram was first released, smartphones were still a new thing; not everyone was able to own one, and taking pictures with a phone’s camera was still more of a novelty thing; with how many different toy-cam styled filters the app offered, it got the job done when it came down to giving a bit of vintage spice to your pictures.
Even Instagram, however, knows that things have changed; in the past few months alone, they released an update allowing an entire editing package and even a hyperlapse app. And it’s because smartphone photography is becoming more sophisticated. As the world’s population becomes virtually void of flip phones, more and more people are starting to use smartphone cameras as their primary lens. And with Instagram being possibly the most popular photo-based social app out there, I decided to throw my two cents out there for those of you who want to make the best of it. This doesn’t have to be about getting more followers, and it doesn’t even have to be about having a professional photography presence on the app. If you just like posting pictures on the app and want a few good tips on how to make them a bit more perfect, then maybe I can give you a few tips here.
Instagram is making it easy for everyone with an iPhone to become timelapse creators with the new app it announced today, which the social photo sharing giant has dubbed Hyperlapse. In it’s infancy, Hyperlapse was nothing more than a side project a few developers from the Instragram camp decided to take on for the fun of it; however, the underdog of an app got its big break as it started circulating around the Instagram offices winning the hearts of all the employees. The positive reaction the app garnered among their own motivated Instagram to go public with it. A move, I suspect, will pay off big for the company given the popularity of it’s namesake app.
The app allows iPhone 5 users to capture up to 45 minutes of video footage to be converted into a hyperlapse all within the app. iPhone & iPod Touch 4 users can also use the app, but will be limited to 10 minute capture times. According to Hyperlapse Technical Support page, all devices must be running iOS 7 or later. [Read more...]
Do you ever notice how sophisticated and easily accessible futuristic technology can look at times when watching a movie? Just to throw an example out there, remember how subtly awesome it was when all Tony Stark needed to do to paint his armor was ask Jarvis to add some hot rod color? As advanced as technology is these days, Louis C.K. was right; we’re a bit spoiled when it comes down to how much we expect. Just the other night, I had a friend complaining that he was stuck on 4G because there wasn’t any LTE in the area.
The bottom line is that efficiency and speed both play a big role in how technology moves forward. As simple as it is to take your phone out and press a button to show the screen, we ended up finding a way to make pushing it unnecessary. As simple as it is to type in a password to buy an app, we replaced it with a fingerprint sensor. And as efficient as it is to Photoshop your pictures to change the weather, we’ve now found a way to let an algorithm do the job for us.
Social media is supposed to be the realm of the young, and in this realm, Instagram reigns as visual king. It’s easy to imagine skinny jean-wearing hipsters snapping filtered squares of their perfect lunches and summer skinny dipping soirees. So it might surprise you to find that an old school National Geographic photographer has unlocked the keys for Insta-success.
Jim Richardson (@JimRichardsonNG) is a contributing photographer to National Geographic and has shot over 25 stories in a storied 30-year career. Although he continues to work for the magazine and pursue personal topics of interest like light pollution, Richardson has also amassed an Instagram following of over 80,000 people – outpacing the majority of his contemporaries, as well as online photo “celebrities.” The ever-cerebral photographer and I have been discussing Instagram and its meaning and implications for over a year now, and we recently traded some notes on the topic.
PS: What compelled you to create an Instagram account?
JR: At first I thought Instagram was totally frivolous. But then I started seeing that photographers were using it to make real statements. And then National Geographic started the @natgeo feed, and early on I could see that there was broad interest. It was gaining an audience. So I jumped in — not the first of the National Geographic photographers to do so, but pretty early on. I just figured that I didn’t know how this thing was going to work, but I needed be in the middle of things, trying to figure it out.