The 50mm lens, often called the “nifty fifty”, is a popular lens. The f/1.8 version for Nikon, Canon and many other brands is very inexpensive and has been a staple of photographers for decades. Personally, I think it should be the first lens a new camera owner buys after they get frustrated with their kit lens.
Finding somewhere truly dark for astrophotography becomes more and more difficult with each passing day. Light pollution always seems to be increasing. Towns and cities are ever expanding, getting larger and brighter. And many astrophotographers guard the secrets of their favourite spots to shoot. For those just getting into it, finding somewhere dark can be quite the challenge.
Now, though, America has a designated 1,400 square mile (3,600 square km) area of Central Idaho set aside for stargazing and astrophotography. Designated as America’s first International Dark Sky Reserve, the Central Idaho Dark Sky Reserve joins only 11 other such locations around the world.
It’s all you need, really. There you are, in the middle of a field of ice and snow, filming polar bears and their not-so-subtle courtship ritual, and one of your cameras topples over. In this case, the remotely controlled “Blizzardcam”.
Riding on mini skis and propelled by a couple of fan blade motors, the Blizzardcam took a topple going over a bank of snow. It did not escape the notice of the curious courting polar bears. It’s a cute and interesting interaction, made all the more humorous by David Tennant’s narration.
The stories behind our work, especially personal projects about which we’re passionate, can be very powerful. This is often true of documentary photographers. They’re capturing a record of our global history. One day, perhaps sooner than we think, they’ll show future generations about the world we live in today.
That’s the driving force behind photographer Danny Wilcox Frazier’s project. He’s been travelling the American Midwest to document the small towns that are rapidly disappearing. He documents the real life of their residents, and this short film from Adobe follows him on this journey.
For the Leica shooter in your life who has everything, what do you get them this Christmas? A red Leica M, of course. Although, you’ll be paying about an extra $1,400 for that paint job. The normally $5,595 Leica M will cost you close to $7,000 in its fancy red uniform. But you’d better hurry, they’ve only made 100 of them.
As part of the brand’s 100th Anniversary celebration, Nikon have established The Nikon Storytellers Scholarship. It is designed to help support the next generation of visual content creators. To kick things off, Nikon are offering $10,000 scholarships to 10 lucky students in the USA or Canada.
Well, ’tis the season. Although some of us might be living in a winter wonderland, that’s not all of us. So, perhaps our videos need a little artificial assistance to give them some of that “Christmas spirit”. Well, this short video from Adobe shows us how we can add foreground and background snow to our scenes in just over a minute using Adobe After Effects.
There’s a big belief surrounding portrait and fashion photography that you always need to have an elaborate lighting setup. While having a bunch of flashes and modifiers can certainly help, it isn’t always necessary. You can still produce great results in an indoor setting with natural light just streaming in through the window. As this behind the scenes video from photographer Irene Rudnyk proves.
Action cameras have become part of many a filmmaker and photographer arsenal. Even if they’re not our primary camera, they’re great for grabbing behind the scenes clips or putting in higher risk situations. And then, sometimes, they are the primary camera, capturing the action. But most of them come with a pretty severe fisheye effect.
Some can deal with this natively in-camera, but often you get the best results in post. But how can you deal with it effectively? In this super short 20 second video from YouTuber Aidin Robbins, we see just how easy it is to fix. Aidin uses Hitfilm Express for this video, but the principle is the same in other editing applications.
Sharpening is one of those parts of digital photography on which everybody has their own opinion. How much, when in the process to do it, using what method, selective vs global, and even whether to apply sharpening at all. Whichever method you choose (or don’t), it’s always good to know multiple methods. When your chosen technique isn’t working, knowing another way can save the day.
In this video, Colin Smith from Photoshop Cafe shows us a sharpening technique using Photoshop’s High Pass Filter. Personally, I love this method, and I’ve been using a variant of this for a few years now. It offers me a lot more versatility than most of the other sharpening methods, and it can be done non-destructively.