German photographer Andrea Grützner has been awarded the €10,000 ($11,848.50 USD) Jury Prize of the 2017 ING Unseen Talent Award. Robin Lopvet has won the Public Prize, which comes with a commission to create new work for the ING Collection. The three finalists for the awards are Belgium photographer Tom Callemin, UK-based photographer Alexandra Lethbridge and Austrian photographer Stefanie Moshammer.
Grützner won for her series “Hive,” which explores how architecture can act as a metaphor for orientation or alienation. Lopvet, the Public Prize winner was chosen by the public in an online poll. He won for his work “Économie de marché” (Market Economy), a digital collage that depicts the food waste from a French market.
The jury for this year’s prizes consisted of Maryam Eisler, photographer, co-chair of Tate’s MENAAC and Unseen Ambassador; Francis Hodgson, photography professor at the University of Brighton and founder of Prix Pictet; Dana Lixenberg, photographer; Anna-Kaisa Rastenberger, professor of exhibition studies and spatiality at University of Arts Helsinki; and Darius Sanai, editor in chief of Condé Nast International.
The competition, which began in 2013, is run in partnership between the global financial institution ING and Unseen, a platform for emerging photographers to showcase their work. The theme for this year’s competition was “Common Ground,” which encouraged photographers to explore “similarities amongst differences,” according to Unseen. “This year’s submissions touched on global issues including gender, consumerism, cultural diversity and communication. The artists proved that the medium of photography can convey a range of perspectives surrounding the theme,” the juries commented in a prepared statement.
Minolta Quietly Released a Set of New Digital Cameras
Minolta has quietly released a trio of digital cameras. This is apparently the first camera product releases under the brand name since it went out of business in 2003.
Minolta was a Japanese camera manufacturer, famed for creating the first autofocus in a 35mm SLR camera, and seems to be emerging from the shadows once again.
The brand merged with the Konica Corporation, forming Konica Minolta, in 2003. However, in 2006, the new merger announced that it was leaving the camera and photo business. The SLR arm was sold on to Sony, and ever since Minolta has remained very different to its old self.
At least until now, when a number of Minolta cameras cropped up on Amazon. It appears that the Minolta name is now owned by Elite Brands, whose website displays all of the new models.
In actuality, 2 of the new cameras are the same — they’re just different color versions. This is the Minolta MN357, a 20-megapixel Wi-Fi-capable digital camera with a 35x optical zoom and 1080p video. It costs $230, but already has two 1-star reviews on Amazon to its name.
“Got about 10 pics with it then it stopped working!” one reviewer writes. “Seller told me to try something see if it would work, still wouldn’t do anything. Seller refunded my money.”
“For those who know Minolta for their excellent optics in the past, be aware this has no relation to them,” says the second reviewer. “At best the rights name has been sold on, at worst it is using the Minolta name on cheap knockoff items.”
The second camera model launched is the Minolta MN5Z. This is also a 20-megapixel camera, but with a 5x optical zoom, that costs $100.
The first of these cameras became available on the Amazon website starting back May 24th, 2017, but until now they have mostly flown under the radar.
In the last year, I’ve walked probably more than 2,000 miles with my camera. I love photo walks because they are so meditative. There is also great excitement when you get home to look at the photos, to see if you caught any great ones. It adds a dimension of extra beauty and flow to your regular long walks. Here are the seven most important lessons I have learned when it comes to getting the best possible enjoyment and results from your photo walks.
1. You shall snap the first photo immediately
Have you noticed, that as you enter an IKEA store, you usually encounter a too-good-to-be-true deal in the first few minutes? Like, an insanely good deal? The reason is that they want you to take that deal and put it in your bag, as this will make you enter into “shopping mode” early on in your visit. Entering “shopping mode” is a threshold you must cross, where you make the decision that “today I am shopping.” And soon item number two and three goes into your bag as well. The sooner you go into shopping mode, the more money IKEA makes from your visit.
It is the same with photo walks. The sooner you take your camera out of the bag, turn it on, and take the first photo – the sooner you enter into photography mode – and the more great photos you will come home with. You will discover, that as soon as you snap the first couple of photos, you will enter a more creative mindset, where you will discover great photos everywhere!
2. You shall bring no other lenses, besides the one you pick
This one is not only about lenses: It is about equipment in general. I always just bring one lens – the one on my camera.
I pick a lens that I feel would fit this particular day and this particular photo walk. If it is a beautiful morning with a clear sky, where I can anticipate a sunrise, I would likely bring a wide-angle lens. If I am out walking with my girlfriend, I might be more likely to bring a portrait lens. The point is that I try to minimize the weight and amount of stuff I bring so that the camera gear never becomes a burden. You want to feel free and light during a photo walk, as this will bring you creativity.
3. You shall introduce a constraint to boost creativity
This one is quite unintuitive, I know. But the more constraints you have, the more creative you will get. A great first constraint, that I always utilize, is that I only bring one lens and that it is always a fixed focal length.
But try what happens if you add even more constraints, such as only shooting in black and white, or only shooting in portrait mode. A constraint is useful if you initially feel resistance towards it. But just stay determined to work your way through the initial resistance, and your creativity will spring into action. You will take photos unlike any you have taken before.
4. You shall follow the good light
I find that the best results come from the photo walks where I allow myself to walk without a set plan. I go out exploring. Whenever you get a feeling, that the light is particularly beautiful in a certain direction, or my intuition just tells me that you should go somewhere – I go there.
I’m not giving you this advice because I necessarily believe our intuition can lead us to the best photos. I have simply found that following my intuition boosts my creativity, and the result of that is always better and more beautiful photos.
5. You shall honor your gut when it says a photo must be taken
This one is common to hear from street photographers, where the moment is everything. But I think it applies to all forms of photography. When your gut feeling says that you have an opportunity to take a great photo, you must go for it. Even if your camera is packed in the bottom of your bag. Even if you feel embarrassed to take a photo in the situation at hand, for whatever reason. Even if you tell yourself you can come back later and take that photo.
Usually, you cannot come back later. Photos are unique moments that you freeze, and moments never come back. The exact same scene, with exactly the same light, will never come back. So always take the shot if your gut tells you to!
6. You shall review sharpness and composition before leaving the scene
Never just quickly glance at your camera’s screen and think to yourself “looks good, let’s move on.” Chances are, the photo isn’t really that good. It might be slightly out of focus. It might be a bit tilted. It might be overexposed.
Always make a habit of checking the composition, exposure, and sharpness of your photo before leaving the scene. Otherwise, you might come home very disappointed, when you bring up the photo on your computer screen, only to discover that it wasn’t as good as you thought. If you check your photos in detail, by zooming in on details to check sharpness, you can always retake the photo while still at the scene.
7. You shall always walk somewhere new
A final key to creativity is variation. Always walk to new places, because newness triggers your creativity. If you always walk the same path, on every photo walk, you will get increasingly bored and gradually lose inspiration. Walk new walks every time!
About the author: Micael Widell is a photography enthusiast based in Stockholm, Sweden. He loves photography, and runs a YouTube channel with tutorials, lens reviews and photography inspiration. You can also find him on Instagram and 500px where his username is @mwroll.
NEED Supply Co. Debuts Fall 2017 Campaign “From The Darkness Of My Heart”
Since 1996, NEED Supply has been creating and curating the best pieces from designers who inspire. The store began as a retailer for vintage Levis, and has grown rapidly since then. Today, the store features the designers you already love, as well as designers you’re bound to fall in love with.
The Fall/Winter 2017 campaign, in quintessential NEED Supply fashion, captures the laid-back cool of the pieces, coupled with the razor-sharp curatorial focus of the retailer. Each piece featured in …
FAA Trumps Local Govt When It Comes to Drone Laws, Court Rules
A new landmark ruling by a federal court has affirmed that the FAA holds a greater say in drone regulations than local governments across the United States.
Newton, Massachusetts, resident Michael Singer filed the lawsuit in January against his city’s government to try to get rid of a number of the rules that failed to echo those of the FAA. The lawsuit was supported by the Consumer Technology Association.
Local Newton laws did not permit drone use under 400 feet above private and city property, but the FAA’s regulations require drones to operate below this very altitude. Also, there was a regulation in Newton that required a drone operator to register with every municipality that it would fly over.
Two other regulations, which were not challenged by Singer, related to the use of drones to spy on people and operating drones in a reckless manner.
The problem that these local regulations posed was that they effectively eliminated any drone use in the city due to the contradicting requirements over flight altitudes and the impractical need to register in every area for even a short flight.
“Newton’s choice to restrict any drone use below this altitude (400 feet) thus works to eliminate any drone use in the confines of the city, absent prior permission. This thwarts not only the FAA’s objectives, but also those of Congress for the FAA to integrate drones into the national airspace,” writes US District Judge William G. Young.
Singer says the ruling “ensure[s] that the skies would remain open for new technology that would benefit society.”
Newton’s legal department has since said that it is considering its appeal options.
“This decision establishes a rock-solid affirmation that the federal government unequivocally holds jurisdiction over the drone industry,” says Doug Johnson, the Consumer Technology Association’s VP of Technology Policy.
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I Shot My First Wedding and Didn’t Mess It All Up. Here’s What I Learned.
My name is Alex Hengen, and I’m a non-pro, non-wedding photographer. Last year I took a few pictures at my sister’s wedding, and my cousin, having his own wedding coming up, saw some of my shots on Facebook and asked if I would photograph their wedding. I agreed.
I had 8 full months to prep. My experience and comfort zone consists mainly of landscapes, astrophotography, and some candid stuff, though I like to push into new styles and subjects to force myself to learn more.
This is going to be a long post, but I want to say a few things for anyone in my situation that this post might help out. I’m a wedding photography beginner, so if anyone wants to nitpick or correct, I take no offense. And by no means is this the best post ever, I’m simply putting out my thoughts and impressions from my perspective, along with some things I spent a decent amount of time researching.
This isn’t definitive and I don’t know everything, so apologies if it comes off as a bit know-it-all-ish, I just really felt compelled to put everything I picked up along the way together in a cohesive, easy to digest form, mostly to help anyone in my shoes.
How It All Started
First off, my cousin and his then-fiancee reached out to me, asked me to photograph the wedding, and explained that it would help them out a great deal. They preferred dealing with someone they knew, and it would end up saving them money as well. They asked for my rate, but I explained I’d do it for free, as they’re family. They insisted on giving me some money for travel and accommodations, since this was out of town for me, and that’s fair.
I set the expectation early in terms of experience, # of shots to expect (~500), time to deliver (under-promised 4-6 weeks, I expect to over-deliver within two), basically everything I could think of. I’m confident in my abilities and planning, but I let them know I’m not a seasoned wedding pro.
Let’s get the gear talk out of the way early. In my opinion, your gear is important, but not as important as being familiar with it and what it can do (how to change settings quickly on the fly — namely aperture and exposure compensation — how high you can push your ISO, how a given aperture affects DOF, what your minimum shutter speed should be for handheld for a given lens, how much you know you can push — exposure or cropping — something when editing, etc).
Here’s the camera gear I used:
Canon 5D Mark IV
Sigma Art 35 f/1.4
Canon 85 f/1.8
A rental Canon 70-200 f/2.8
Lots of memory cards (2x 128GB SD and 2x 128GB CF for 5D MK IV, 2x 64GB SD for 6D)
Lots of batteries (went through 2 batteries per camera, just about)
Monopod (for the 70-200mm at the ceremony, as that sucker is heavy)
Good backpack of your choosing (Peak Design Everyday for me)
Comfortable camera straps of your choosing (PD Sling for me), I was wearing both cameras most of the day, one on each shoulder for fast easy access
I’m probably forgetting stuff, but this was what stuck out
Here’s the non-photo gear:
Snacks (3-4 Cliff bars for me)
Ear plugs (for the dance floor near the speakers)
Good amount of gaffer tape wrapped around a tripod/monopod leg
Compression socks (seriously guys, they help)
Comfortable shoes (I got a pair of black Allbirds, they looked sharp enough and were so damn comfortable)
Backup pair of clothes kept in trunk of car – underwear, dress shirt, dress pants and shoes. I got a nosebleed right as I was leaving for the bridal prep, and that spare dress shirt came in handy.
I used the 35mm and 85mm for the bride and bridesmaids prep, and the 35mm and 70-200mm for the ceremony, portraits, and reception. I brought along lenses I wasn’t planing on using, lenses that could duplicate a focal length in a pinch. If I dropped my 35, I had a wide angle zoom that could replace it. If I broke the 70-200mm, I had a slower 70-300mm and an 85mm I could substitute. And in a real pinch, I guess I could have shot the entire wedding with my 50mm f/1.8.
I contacted the main photographer for my sister’s wedding, Harmony Lynn (who is also her/my good friend), and picked her brain. She linked me to a posing guide she used when starting out, and she gave me good information that you’d only really pick up through experience. Things like…
1. Getting friendly with the wedding coordinator and DJ (who can ask to store your gear at their table during reception, and they can help light up the dance floor during important dances for you. If the DJ is cool [mine was very awesome], they can also give you a heads-up before each dance/cake cutting/anything major so you can get ready, and also get the catering crew to bring you food early so you can shovel it away and get back to work. Seriously, he was the best).
2. Being assertive.
3. Picking up a few flashes and gel kits if possible (in order to help light the reception hall).
4. Dinner requirements if you want to eat at the reception.
5. Having all of the detail shoot stuff ready in one place in advance (shoes, dress, veil, all 3 rings, etc), preferably wherever the bride is getting ready.
6. Nailing the timeline.
Organizing the Information
Staying organized was absolutely critical for me to keep myself from being overwhelmed and feeling lost with all of this new information. To help myself out, I created a Google Docs form that I had them fill out, with as much detail as possible. I basically combined forms I found online with what I thought of and what my wedding photographer friend suggested, until I had something I was comfortable with. Here’s what I ended up with, and absolutely feel free to copy it if you want.
I saved the resulting timeline and details to my Google Keep as a note and referred to it as the day went on, and it simplified things tremendously being able to have it at hand and not needing to memorize every little part of the schedule.
I kept a good amount of info on Google Keep as a note for reference: shot list (cake cutting, first dance, bride and bridesmaids, groom and groomsmen, family, etc etc), addresses for everything (church, park the couple chose for portraits, reception area), phone numbers for everyone, ideas for the portraits, etc.
Wedding Photography Tips and Pointers
Here are other odds and ends I picked up as I prepared:
If shooting with two bodies, make sure they each are set to the same time and time zone, to save time editing. When you import, you can sort by capture time, and photos taken with each camera will show up together rather than being all over the place
If you’re using a posing guide, take photos of the poses with the camera(s) you’re going to use. If you need to refer to them, you can look like you’re reviewing photos and not fiddling with a phone and looking like you don’t know what you’re doing
Get rest and drink/eat when you can. Sit when you can. My lower back and feet hurt off and on (I’m not the most active individual). Force yourself to eat a snack in your car on your way to the next location — who knows when you’ll have time next.
Look for microexpressions on the faces of everyone in between taking your crucial shots. Especially the bride, groom, and their parents. I got a lot of great, unplanned shots with the zoom lens while watching for reactions to events and speeches from parents and friends.
For the love of God, don’t miss the father walking his daughter down the aisle, or their kiss after being announced husband and wife. You don’t get a redo and those are super important.
Meet up with the couple a day or two before the wedding, if possible. Go over everything you got in the form you sent them, go over your shot list, go over your schedule, your notes, etc. and ask if there’s anything else they need. They may have made a change or forgotten to mention something, in my case it was a cool bus that was made to look like a trolley to ferry the bride and groom and their friends to the park, which resulted in some cool unplanned shots.
Give yourself more time than you think you need. We got to the park only to find another couple, just wed, was using the same bridge and shady area with their photographer! We took shots elsewhere while waiting for them to finish up, and luckily had plenty of time set aside.
If possible, ask the bride and groom to hold their kiss for an extra beat or two for you, and ask if the bride and her father can walk slowly down the aisle when they see you step out, so you can nail that shot.
Burst shooting is your friend. Taking a group photo of 10 people, or of a kid or two? Either pray they all have their eyes open and smiles on at the same exact time, or just hold down that shutter button and get 10-15 shots and multiply your chances.
Shoot more than you think you need. I walked away with 4,200 photos, and will likely deliver around 500-600.
Learn how to use a flash. Bounce flash indoors if you need to, or use it as fill light outdoors. I got really lucky in that the day of the wedding was overcast, so the light was honestly ideal and I didn’t need any fill flash. However, I was prepared with a flash and flashbender to fill if needed.
Back up your photos immediately. I made a copy, moved it to an external drive, another copy to my Google Drive, removed the SD cards from the cameras and set them aside until I’m done editing everything.
If you’re not sure whether or not you need to capture something, just do it. Worst case you don’t need it and it costs you a few minutes when culling.
Get to the reception area before the guests so you can take pictures of the details before people start putting bags, coats, etc everywhere.
Have people skills. I am not the best with people, but I pushed myself and made it work out, and ended up getting along well with basically everyone. It helps a lot when you need help.
Figure out how the couple is leaving the church and reception. If people are throwing rice or confetti or what have you, then you want to be in place and ready.
That’s essentially all of the technical information I can think of. Hopefully, it will help at least one person in some way. I’m not a pro with posing or weddings, and I’m sure others can add a lot to the discussion in the comments, but in my research I found myself looking for posts like this one, so hopefully it helps.
Once I had this stuff down and felt prepared to handle those points, I was free to focus on composition, lighting, posing, taking creative shots, and having a bit of fun with the couple, bridesmaids, and groomsmen.
One last note… I wasn’t anxious or nervous for months, and it wasn’t until two days before the wedding that the nerves hit me and I started getting anxiety. I didn’t expect that and it took me by surprise, considering how calmly I’d planned everything and how ready I thought I was. Staying in touch with the couple and meeting up with them the day before the wedding helped a lot, and once I actually got into it, I was fine. Having emergency clothes and everything I might need in my kit helped with that too, it was a small comfort over-preparing all the gear and supplies.
About the author: Alex Hengen is a photographer with interests in fine art, landscapes, astrophotography, and more. You can find more of his work on his website and Instagram.
Photographers take pictures with cameras; Pete makes photographs with his imagination. Before Pete, there was nothing modern about photography. The first time I saw one of his photographs, it hit me as though I had been struck by lightning, and with almost as much voltage.
Turner was born in Albany, New York, on May 30th, 1934. He graduated from the Rochester Institute of Technology in 1956, and his color photographs became recognized for their manipulated colors and intensely saturated hues.
Here’s a 6.5-minute about Turner’s work by the George Eastman House:
Over the years, Turner shot a large number of album covers for musicians — including some of the most notable jazz albums — and assignments for magazines. Here are some of Turner’s album cover photos:
Turner’s photos are now found in the permanent collections of major institutions such as the International Center of Photography, Tokyo Metropolitan Museum of Photography, and the George Eastman House.
Turner is survived by his wife, son, and two grandchildren.
When deployed at a sports stadium or arena, the technology would allow a “virtual camera” to move around and view the action from pretty much any vantage point in the 3D space. You could go to ground level to watch the action as if you were one of the players, or you could float up above them to check out the birds-eye view.
The system would require a number of high-resolution cameras mounted in various places around the stadium. Each camera is connected to a network and controlled by software. Afterward, the video viewpoints are fed into an image processing engine that turns it into high-resolution 3D spatial data.
“Users can freely move a virtual camera around the 3-D space, resulting in video that can be viewed from various different angles and viewpoints,” Canon says. The system lets you “experience the simulated physical sensation of being among players on the field during a game.
“Along with providing a new way to enjoy sporting events, Canon plans to explore such potential applications for this system as training teams and athletes.”
Canon has basically figured out how to record an event and turn the action into the equivalent of a video game replay that you can move the camera around in. This type of thing would be even more immersive if it were to be viewed through a virtual reality headset, which is likely what Canon is exploring as well.
Imagine watching a replay of a basketball, football, or soccer game while “running around” with the players. That may soon be possible.