Pop quiz– How many times in an average day do you come across a photo on-line, put there by a photographer seeking critique, comments, suggestions, opinions, or input? Actually, it’s not a fair question. If your day is anything like mine, you lose track by lunch time. Between Flickr, 500px, my students, and the many photography-related pages I follow on Facebook, there are just too many to count. Despite the huge count (or maybe because of it) I find two things that resonate with me about these posts. The first– based on their reactions– is that most people aren’t really looking for an honest critique. They are looking for validation. The second thing that jumps out at me is that most people simply do not know how to give a proper critique.
You’ve probably heard it before, you take really nice pictures, you must have a really nice camera.
As photographers we get quite angered by statements like this, and often compare it with other insults like “you make really tasty cakes, you must have a great stove” or “you build really great furniture, you must have a great screwdriver”.
Neil van Niekerk offers a different approach, suggesting that the other party is not insulting you, and that they are actually giving you a compliment and that this is their way to initiate a discussion or break the ice:[Read More…]
Remember when I wrote about Quintessential Moments? It focused on benchmark or definitive moments in our growth as photographers. Maybe it was a photograph where a new concept fell perfectly into place. Maybe it was an image that had a profound impact on you– or someone else. One thing that I mentioned in passing at the end of the article was that you can’t force these moments. You can’t stack the deck and artificially create a defining moment.
I should have taken my own advice this past weekend.
Dragon*Con once again came to town, and with it came its annual parade. I have a pretty healthy comic book and sci-fi nerd streak in me, so it’s always a good time wandering around with my camera, getting fun shots of people with perhaps…well, let’s just say they take their love for these characters way more seriously I do. Way, WAY more seriously. And come on– who doesn’t love a parade?
Photographer Manjari Sharma just wrapped up one of the more interesting photography projects that I’ve seen, where she used her own shower as the location to shoot models for a year.
As this is quite an unorthodox way of shooting, we asked Manjari for some information about the series.
When we wondered about the motivation for such a location, Manjari shares that [Read More…]
Consider this– Every significant photo in the history of the medium was taken with a camera less technologically advanced than the one sitting in your camera bag right now. Every culturally iconic image. Sports. Fashion. War. Politics. The list goes on. Regardless of whether they were shot digitally or on film, the cameras with which they were taken are all yesterday’s news, especially when compared side-by-side with the current selection of DSLRs
Why do I bring this up?
Our story begins with an email a while back that went like this: “Dear Jeff: It was a pleasure speaking with you on the phone today about our current job opening for a photographer. We’ve reviewed your website and portfolio, and we love what we see. We are very excited about the prospect of working together. I do have one question, though. You mentioned on the phone that you shoot with the Nikon D300. Is that a full frame camera? I’m asking because having a full frame camera is a requirement for this job….”
Have you ever wondered how color film came to be? Interestingly the story involves math, chemistry, and a group if innovative, curious people, as well as smart businessmen.
The film below by our pals at filmmakeriq, have a great movie going over the history of color film starting with the “discovery of color” as a function of light by Isaac Newton.
The story goes on with Kinemacolor system a duo color capturing mechanism and travels all the way to modern days Technicolor and Eastmancolor.[Read More…]
Now that the dust has settled and the post production work is done, we sat down with Stefan Kohler, one of the gigapixel creators, for an interview.[Read More…]
Oddly enough (or embarrassingly enough) it was actually a conversation in a movie that got me thinking about this topic recently.
“There are several quintessential moments in a man’s life– losing his virginity, getting married, becoming a father, and having the right girl smile at you.”
While we can endlessly debate what the quintessential moments in life are (as well as the philosophical merits of 1985’s “St. Elmo’s Fire), I think we can all agree that we have them. They are moments that define us. Benchmark moments along our timeline (NOT the Facebook kind) where we look back and see how something important about us or our lives took shape.
I’m always fascinated when I meet a photographer who has never shot a roll of film. Don’t get me wrong. I don’t mean it in a critical way. I’ve fully embraced and invested in digital, just like you. Couldn’t do what I do without it. It’s just interesting to me, though, how so many photographers have never used one of the most basic elements in all of photography. I can’t (and don’t) blame them. It’s timing. The history of photography in general– and the digital age in particular– has come a very long way in a very short time. Cameras get smaller. Sensors get bigger. “iPhonography” is actually a thing. And don’t even get me started on some of the insanely impressive time-lapse photography going on out there. Exciting stuff.
And yet, I miss film.
I’ve seen lots of used film canisters re-purposed as dangling bag accessories for sale in trendy parts of Hong-Kong. The idea is to drill or burn a small hole in the top of the plastic spool and fit a key-chain to that. I figured it would be a lot more useful to use the can to give a return contact address in case the bag is lost and found. What better way could there be than to use film?