Photographic history is a real rabbit hole, especially here in the internet age when you can find piles of information about pretty much anything without having to remember how the Dewey Decimal System works. This video, however, is like taking a very shallow dip into that rabbit hole, giving you a well-done and easily digested top-level overview of the history of photography.
The video is actually made by COOPH, who also make some excellent photographer-specific clothing , and it starts way back at the beginning with the Camera Obscura, eventually making its way up to the modern smartphone camera.
It won’t make you an expert in five minutes, but it might give you a jumping off point for looking into a segment of photography you never even knew existed. Or, hey, maybe it’ll provide you with a valuable name or date you can use later if you’re ever on Jeopardy or at a party full of real photography nerds.
What a long, strange journey it has been.
H/T: Laughing Squid
The shape and quality of light used in a portrait can have an extremely profound effect on the overall outcome of the photo. We all know that by now. But, by using some clever light grouping, photographers can sometimes create a few drastically different portraits in a matter of seconds.
The video from Adorama was inspired by a Sports Illustrated shoot from a few years ago where the photographer only had a minute with each athlete and needed to get a few different looks.
The concept is relatively simple, even if the actual execution does take a fair bit of planning. Basically, you arrange your lights into various groups using wireless triggers and by turning different groups on and off, you can customize the look of the lighting.
Personally, it’s not a strategy I would use unless time restrictions and necessity really required it because you’re giving up some control and finesse in exchange for brutal efficiency. But, if nothing else, it’s a nice little demonstration of just how much lighting can make a difference in a portrait.
If you’re a fan of fashion, then you’re probably already familiar with The Sartorialist. For the uninitiated, it’s a prolific collection of high-fashion portraits shot of real-world people on the street by photographer Scott Schuman. It’s kind of like Humans of New York, but with fancier clothes and no sad stories.
You get to see a brief, but interesting look into his process from selecting a person to photograph to positioning and posing them for the shot.
I’m not a big fashion guy, and I definitely don’t “get” a good deal of the styles he presents on his blog, but he has been doing his thing for so long and so consistently that you have to respect it. Just the act of approaching people all the time like that must require a very specific personality.
Check out his site here.
One piece of advice aspiring photographers will often hear is that it’s crucial to specialize in one type of photography. Claire Sheprow, however, has found great success doing exactly the opposite. She shoots everything from portraits to large…
I’m not big on confrontation, so watching this episode of A Current Affair in which angry couples confront an alleged deadbeat wedding photographer was rather tough. However, it really bugs me on a very personal level when wedding photographers treat their customers badly.
The episode itself is almost 15 minutes long and it gets crazier and crazier by the minute. The photographer allegedly left clients waiting over a year for their photos, and when confronted threatens to delete the couples’ photos forever and sue them.
At one point, he uses the excuse that he’s a one-man operation and has to do everything himself, which is a huge copout.
Ultimately, I’m not sure how I feel about this kind of ambush-style journalism, but it really seems like this guy had it coming. Either way, it’s a nice reminder that if you go into business, you should be ready to treat your customers the way they deserve to be treated.
There’s something about watching things happen in super slow motion that makes them infinitely more interesting. Right now, this video of the Mythbusters shooting a pistol at 73,000 fps is making its rounds on the internet. It’s something we’ve seen in various other forms before, and yet, I watched it at least 5 times. So, now you can do the same.
They’re using, as you might expect, a Phantom camera and tons of light to get up to that 73,000 fps number. At that speed, the footage captured over the course of one second in real time would take about 40 minutes to watch on a standard 30 fps TV broadcast.
This is the kind of thing I’m excited to see more of in cameras. For a while, Casio was actually pushing the envelope in terms of high-speed capture in consumer-oriented cameras. No, seriously, Casio. They fizzled out on it, though, and now cameras like GoPro are picking up steam a little.
There are other drawbacks involved with capturing high-speed, not the least of which is the insane amount of light you need in order to make it look right, but this is one function I’m looking forward to seeing more of.
Full disclosure: I’m a huge mountain bike nerd. I don’t get to ride nearly as much as I used to, but I’m still a sucker for a well-done MTB video, and Anthill Films has been one of the best production companies in the business for some time now. Their new film, unReal is debuting right now and it contains a rather amazing one-shot take of Brandon Semenuk shredding an incredible Slopestyle course.
The footage may look like something that was shot with a drone, but it was actually done with the GSS C520 camera stabilization system, which is typically used for helicopters. The whole thing was mounted to a pickup truck and the trail crew built a special road on which the truck could drive to get the shots. According to the blog, they only had one shot to get the whole line in one take since Semenuk was injured.
You may actually recognize Semenuk’s name because he’s responsible for some more insane mountain bike footage from his runs at the Red Bull Rampage contest.
I decided to test my DJI Phantom 2 during a 34 MPH wind. Gust were higher as you can tell my the movement of the quad. Even though the Phantom took a beating it still was fairly easy to control. Next week I will be testing the FPV.