Fstoppers Originals

The Instagram Feature I Want the Most (But Will Never Get) – Photography Article

Let’s pretend for a moment that you’ve found a magic lamp, and it’s going to grant you one and only one Instagram-related wish. I can think of what I’d wish for. Can you? Let’s also establish a guideline for this hypothetical scenario so as to stay focused. We’ll assume that your wish has to be something feature-related. That is to say, you can’t wish for millions of followers, or infinite engagement on your posts, or similarly self-styled wishes. This social…

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Stop Asking How and Start Asking Why – Photography Article

When analyzing a photo, do you care more about how a photo was taken, or why the elements in the photo are there? If you’re trying to grow as a photographer, you might need to stop asking how things are done, and why they are done. In art, there are a lot of questions we ask when looking at a photo. To a lot of people, the most important is how. How did they do this, how long did it…

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Photographing Whale Sharks | Fstoppers – Photography Article

Photographing whale sharks tends to be a top bucket list item for many underwater image-makers, and for good reason. The largest fish in the sea, whale sharks offer uniquely special photo opportunities. For those of you who have yet to photograph one of these gentle giants, I’ve put together a few tips to keep in mind for that first encounter.   While most images of whale sharks may evoke an environment of peace and serenity, all too often the images…

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A Gitzo Traveler Tripod: Is It Worth the Money? – Photography Article

I have a large and relatively heavy Gitzo tripod that can carry as much as a small elephant. But I also bought an expensive Gitzo traveler tripod because sometimes I want to travel light. The question is, was it worth the money? I love using a tripod. It brings a lot of fun and makes photography relaxed and flexible. I can take time to look at the landscape and wait for the right light situation. I can use any shutter…

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Are Smartphone Portrait Modes for Photographers? – Photography Article

I’ve been a stalwart defender of “real” cameras when it comes to shooting portraits. But a slew of phone cameras over the last few years have included portrait modes, and so has the time come to change perspectives? I excitedly purchased the iPhone X when it came out because I was keen on trying out its portrait mode. I returned it after two weeks. The image quality out of the phone was nothing to write home about and the portrait…

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This Samsung Ultra-Wide Proves Curved Screens Are More Than a Gimmick – Photography Article

If you ask me, curved television sets are a little over the top. Unless you have a television the size of a movie screen, it just doesn’t make financial or practical sense to bend that screen. But when it comes to monitors a few feet from your eyes, Samsung’s CJ791 curved monitor really does make the difference. I’m not one to fatigue easily, but we all have our limits when editing for hours in front of a screen. A lot of…

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A to Z of Photography: Ultimate Confrontation and Umbo – Photography Article

We now arrive at the second of the three tricky letters of the alphabet. Unfortunately, U is uselessly underwhelming but ultimately and uniquely utilitarian! The first an iconic photo of political protest and confrontation, a theme that continues to this day in newsrooms across the world. Then discover Umbo. Ultimate Confrontation Picture the historical setting – your government, which stands for law and order, of setting a high legal and moral standard, is involved in illicit and illegal activity, of…

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Love Your Photos Like How a Good Parent Would Love Their Child – Photography Article

It’s imperative for a photographer to love their own work. You wouldn’t ever progress in the craft if you didn’t. Generally, photographers who have just began their journey as a visual artist tend to love their work more than those who have been in the industry for many years. That’s probably due to the fact that the more experienced ones tend to look closer at more minute details than beginners and would be much more aware of flaws of their…

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Learn to Edit Video in 15 Minutes – Photography Article

If you want to get serious about video editing, I highly suggest learning to use Adobe Premiere, but if you want to edit a video as cheaply and as quickly as possible, this is the video for you. I’m going to teach you how to edit a video in 15 minutes.  ACDSee recently asked me to produce a quick tutorial on how to use their video-editing software, Video Studio 4. I had never used the software before, but it was incredibly intuitive…

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How I Shot This Model in Just Fifteen Minutes – Photography Article

Sometimes it’s fun to set yourself a challenge, maybe shooting with limited gear or with a very quick turnaround. On this occasion, I had no choice. The shoot was conceived and captured in under fifteen minutes, and the images were edited and submitted less than half an hour later. Here’s how it came about. Every July I attend the International Gathering at Gerlev Idrætshøjskole in Denmark. This brings together more than 150 people from around the world to dance, train…

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Why It’s Important to Know Your Value as a Photographer – Photography Article

In the world of professional photography, the value of our work doesn’t always line up with our client’s budgets. But as tempting as it is to take the money and run, holding firm can often be more profitable in the end. First off, I get it. I am a professional photographer am I make my living from my photography. If I don’t book enough work, the dog doesn’t eat. I like the dog. I want him to eat. When we first start off…

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The Art of Composite Photography: Part Four – Photography Article

We are now four parts into the art of composite series, and this week we touch upon style and influence. I group these two aspects because you can not have one without the other. Your style will eventually be the thing that influences people to pay for your work, and your influences are where your style comes from. Your style is the alchemy, that personal magic that makes your work uniquely yours. Some photographers spend all their career trying to create…

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The Gear I Definitely Wasted My Money On – Photography Article

We’ve all bought things impulsively, and on occasion it works out. But often it doesn’t, and a few times for me those purchases have been an unambiguous waste of money. I recently wrote an article defending how much many of us photographers enjoy new camera gear. Whether it’s a vintage lens and an adapter, or the latest camera body, it’s both invigorating and potentially useful to acquire new weapons for the arsenal. However, there are times when we get whisked…

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Mike Kelley Critiques Your Architectural Photos – Photography Article

In the latest video from Fstoppers, professional architectural photographer Mike Kelley critiques images submitted by fellow photographers. All of the images were submitted by architectural photographers who are part of a closed group on Facebook.  In my view, one of the most difficult things to master in photography is composition. This is also one of the most important factors in photography and especially true for architectural photography. What I’ve personally found to be extremely useful is being part of a…

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The Death of Photoshop: A Warning to Photographers – Photography Article

Photoshop’s days are seriously numbered thanks to the likes of AI, machine learning, and neural networks. The question is, what should photographers be doing to prepare for this big change? As the years go on, the amount of automation photographers use in their digital workflow has steadily risen. From utilizing actions to process images, to relying on presets for our visual style, to using one of the many “Auto” modes which exist in our image editors. Manually editing our work…

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Why Photographers Need to Start Asking: What GPU Does My Computer Have? – Photography Article

Your computer’s graphics card isn’t just for games anymore — with recent updates to essential core products, including Lightroom and Photoshop, there are a number of reasons why you should start paying attention to your GPU. What’s A GPU Doing Anyway? Your computer’s graphics card, a separate chip from Nvidia/AMD or built into some CPUs, helps create what you see on your computer’s screen. While this was the primary function for photographers in the past; video editors have enjoyed graphics…

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Presenting ‘Glory’: A Photo Experience That I Surprised My Supporters by Delivering to Their Doorstep – Photography Article

It’s time for something different. Ever have that great idea, but you may just let it fizzle away? Me too. But this one wasn’t getting away.  Firstly, because I wasn’t going to let that happen, but it also wouldn’t escape me. With those two forces and a thirst for something new, turned into a project which would eventually become my greatest creative challenge so far in my career.  Growing up, I would collect newspapers. Some of my most cherished possessions growing up for…

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Photographing the Last Tattooed Headhunters: Advice for Successful Travel Photography Trips – Photography Article

Have you always wished you gathered the courage to dive deep into travel photography? It can be an unforgettable experience, but be cautious because you are highly likely to contract a “travel bug” for the rest of your life! Not going to lie, I have always wanted to jump into travel photography myself one day but until I do, I will enjoy reading and looking through photographic stories of people who have visited and photographed breathtaking places all over the…

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Fstoppers Reviews the NBP Freqsep Control 2.1 Plugin Update – Photography Article

As always, I get comfortable in my workflow then something new comes along that I didn’t know I needed. This can of course be a good thing as long as we aren’t closed minded to change. Today I’m going over an awesome new feature of the new NBP Freqsep Control update version 2.1. Full disclosure, I am an ambassador for NBP plugins, so I obviously use these products however I wouldn’t endorse a product that I don’t honestly use and…

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So You Want to Make a Movie? How Are You Going to Pay For That? – Photography Article

In an industry dominated by budgets in the millions, or even hundreds of millions, how can an independent filmmaker get their vision to market? YouTube, VIMEO, luck? The festival circuit? Making a movie is expensive, so how does a rising artist find enough financial support to break into the business of film? Film Market Access Inc. Kirk Cooper of Film Market Access Inc. (FMA) runs a series of market readiness programs designed to help aspiring filmmakers navigate several of the most…

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Useful Gimbal Tripod Head Configuration Tips – Photography Article

When I purchased my first large zoom lens it came equipped with a tripod foot. I quickly learned that a standard ball-head wasn’t the best way to use one of these beasts on a tripod. This started my venture into the gimbal games and actually helped in ways that I didn’t anticipate. I could tell by just looking at a gimbal tripod head that it would serve much better for this use, but I wasn’t sure if I would like…

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Think You’re Getting All The Resolution out of Your Sensor? – Photography Article

It seems each recent camera announcement has brought a higher megapixel count — including Sony’s latest 60mp+ release. But whether you’re shooting on 24mp APS-C, 50mp full frame, or 100mp medium format, you might not be getting all the resolution you paid for. Check out this list for 3 clarity-robbing problems and their fixes. Debayering Your sensor doesn’t actually see the full range of color at every photosite. Instead, an array of colored filters combined with some clever interprolation transforms…

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How Sony Is Using Experience, Community, and Education to Build a Brand Like no Other: Kando 3.0 – Photography Article

I recently outlined seven reasons why I was excited to go to Sony Kando 3.0, but now that I’ve been, there was so much more to it than I initially thought.  That’s the reason for this follow-up article. What I thought going into the event was all accurate; it just turned out to be way more than I expected. There was Sony support on-site, and they took amazing care of all my gear that I dropped off for free, and…

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How the Daguerreotype Started a Victorian Black Market for Pornography in London – Photography Article

Louis Daguerre is one of the founding fathers of photography, but little did he know, his invention opened a secret door down a street in Victorian-era London. Needless to say, this article is NSFW. When one thinks of Victorian England, it might be conjured as images of large, layered garments, coal-blackened men, and portly royals. It seems so far back into the past that it’s too far removed from modern society to draw many parallels. That said, my great grandparents were…

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A to Z of Photography: Tilt-Shift and Train Wreck at Montparnasse – Photography Article

This week we turn to a train wreck of an image — yes the iconic photo “Train Wreck at Montparnasse Station”! But before we get to that, step back to the dawn of photography and understand the principles behind tilting and shifting the lens relative to the sensor. Some of the highest profile photographers use tilt-shift lenses in their day-to-day work, so find out why that is. Tilt-Shift Photography Is there something so inherent to the design of the camera,…

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Marie Kondo Helped Me Clean My Portfolio – Photography Article

At the start of the new year, Netflix released the cultural hit show, “Tidying Up with Marie Kondo”. No show has made me change my lifestyle around more than this one was able to. But I didn’t just use it to clean my room, I used her methods to clean my portfolio.Lately I’ve been scrolling through my website wondering if everything on it is still worth it. Do these images have the impact I think they do? Are certain things hurting…

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How Robert Ascroft Shot This Series of Milk Images with Celebrity Angela Serafyan of HBO’s Westworld – Photography Article

Robert Ascroft is known worldwide for his celebrity, sports, and fashion photographs. His client list includes Warner Bros, 20th Century Fox, Showtime, A&E, Puma, Vanity Fair, and Rolex. So, basically his client list includes some of the biggest names in his industries of focus! Not bad, right? Go big or go home I guess! This shoot is a special project for Robert because it is a personal series of images to be used in a gallery show and promotion of Robert’s…

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I Let My Clients Pay What They Wanted and the Results Amazed Me – Photography Article

My business is about 90 percent dealing with individuals, and about 10 percent working with brands. I just moved into a new live/work studio and, to help break it in, I decided to hold a “Pay What You Can” sale and the results made me change my entire business model. For the first week of the sale, I limited myself to one shoot per day to try and keep things under control, however, all of the slots filled up extremely quickly and…

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Why Instagram Should Hide Follower Counts and Why It Never Will – Photography Article

Instagram appears to be in the process of rolling out a surprising change to its platform: hiding the number of times that a post has been liked. While the internet giant claims that it’s making the change in to help us focus on the thing we love, the truth is different. If it really wants to improve things, it should go one step further and hide follower counts too. You can be sure, however, that it never will. In a…

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Why Photographers and Filmmakers Should Not Follow the Advice of Many Books or Lectures on Business – Photography Article

There is an abundance of books on making business. They cover a lot of ground, mostly emphasizing marketing and selling, especially the latter. How practical is their advice to you as an artist? A Century of Economy in Seven Sentences Almost a hundred years ago, the majority of the workforce was in goods production and manufacturing. That included farmers, craftsmen, and workers in the factories. Less than 10% were engaged in services. Craft industries were not deemed “services.” Services were transportation,…

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