iPhone 8 Plus Has the Best Smartphone Camera Ever, DxOMark Says

iPhone 8 Plus Has the Best Smartphone Camera Ever, DxOMark Says

The new iPhone 8 Plus has the best smartphone camera ever. That’s the conclusion DxOMark came to after the camera testing lab went hands-on with the new Apple smartphone. With a record score of 94, it’s now the clear leader in the market.

“The Apple iPhone 8 Plus has a main camera system truly worthy of a flagship phone,” DxOMark says in the opening of its newly published review. “[It’s] the best-performing mobile device camera we have ever tested.”

The upgrades given to the cameras — a 12MP main wide-angle camera (with a backside-illuminated (BSI) sensor and f/1.8 lens) and a 12MP telephoto camera (with a f/2.8 lens) — have improved its quality in every single category. The iPhone 8 Plus scores exceptionally high marks in both Zoom image quality and Bokeh quality, two new categories that DxOMark just added to its scoring system.

The score of 94 puts in 2 points ahead of the new iPhone 8 and 4 points ahead of the Google Pixel and HTC U11.

DxOMark raves about the HDR performance, face detection accuracy, zoom abilities, and bokeh quality of the iPhone 8 Plus. The negatives discovered in testing include a color cast when shooting in artificial lighting and “some autofocus issues.”

“Overall, the Apple iPhone 8 Plus is an excellent choice for the needs of nearly every smartphone photographer,” DxOMark concludes. “It is at the top of our scoring charts in nearly every category — and in particular, its advanced software allows it to do an amazing job of capturing high-dynamic-range scenes and images in which it can recognize faces.”

Keep in mind that the iPhone X, Apple’s true new flagship phone, has yet to be tested by DxOMark — if that phone is all that it’s hyped up to be, then the iPhone 8 Plus’ stay at the top of the smartphone leaderboard may be very short lived.


Source: PetaPixel

iPhone 8 Plus Has the Best Smartphone Camera Ever, DxOMark Says

Conquering Your Camera Settings in Landscape Photography

Conquering Your Camera Settings in Landscape Photography

Understanding basic camera settings is important so that you know how to react in different conditions such as varying light, moving subjects, or to achieve maximum depth-of-field. In this 10-minute video, Adam Karnacz from First Man Photography discusses his techniques for working his camera while doing landscape photography.

While knowing precisely the camera settings a photographer used to achieve a certain shot is not entirely useful, understanding how they came to choose those settings is a good learning experience.

Karnacz talks about his full shooting workflow from the moment he turns on his camera until he takes the final shot, explaining the settings that he uses in the majority of cases.

Firstly, he always shoots manual. The majority of the time he will shoot at his camera’s base ISO (100) to minimise noise. He may occasionally increase this in order to get a faster shutter speed, but using a tripod means base ISO is perfect for most situations.

Next, he will choose the aperture based on whether or not there is anything in the foreground that should be in-focus. If so, he may use f/16 in order to achieve maximum depth-of-field. If not, he sticks to f/8, which is the sweet spot in terms of sharpness for most lenses.

Finally, he will adjust the shutter speed to achieve the correct focus. In most cases with landscape photography, the shutter speed is the least-critical part of the exposure triangle as your subject is rarely moving, which means a fast shutter speed is not necessary.

However, there are cases where the shutter speed is important, and Karnacz takes us to a location with a waterfall to demonstrate how he would set up his camera for this shot; using a slower shutter speed to show movement in the water.

He then travels to a different location to demonstrate how he would take a shot in a case where the foreground should be sharp. He also shows how he would use the in-camera metering as well as live view to check the histogram and ensure the image isn’t blown out.

While the knowledge of how to adapt to specific scenes, it’s not everything.

“It’s not the camera settings that are going to make you a great landscape photographer,” Karnacz says. “It’s about the visualization, about actually getting out into these amazing landscapes, and then just putting your personality into your photographs.”


Source: PetaPixel

Conquering Your Camera Settings in Landscape Photography

This Guy Flew His Camera Drone Onto, Inside, and Under a Moving Train

This Guy Flew His Camera Drone Onto, Inside, and Under a Moving Train

Camera drone operator Paul Nurkkala just released a video titled “Flight of the Year” that showcases his world-class drone piloting skills. He captured some seemingly impossible footage of his drone flying onto, next to, inside, and under a moving freight train.

Nurkkala specializes in flying camera drones through a first-person point-of-view using a live feed through goggles. His custom-assembled drone was equipped with a GoPro HERO5 Session action camera, which is light enough to keep the craft fast and nimble.

“I recognize that this isn’t the most ‘flowy’ video or anything, but all of the things were all in the same flight, so I wanted to show that off,” Nurkkala writes.

Nurkkala’s video is getting a considerable amount of attention and praise, but it appears to be in violation of both railroad and government policies.

“Union Pacific operates in a safety-sensitive environment,” the Union Pacific Railroad’s drone policy states. “Never operate a drone in a manner that could distract or otherwise endanger yourself, Union Pacific employees, equipment or the public.

“All drone pilots must operate in compliance with applicable Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) regulations and safety guidelines. Flying a drone in a reckless manner is a violation of federal law and FAA regulations and could result in civil fines or criminal action.”


Source: PetaPixel

This Guy Flew His Camera Drone Onto, Inside, and Under a Moving Train

Tush’s latest issue finds new extremes

Tush’s latest issue finds new extremes

Tush has never been afraid to buck beauty convention and their issue 41 is no different perhaps even going a step further. Dubbing the issue “Extreme”, Tush finds big visual returns pushing passed the norm to more uncommon grounds toying with ideas like zombie-fied makeup, animal masks and uber application. But not all is so […] More…
Source: Models.com

Tush’s latest issue finds new extremes

Dickies Commissioned a Photographer to Shoot with an 8×10 Camera

Dickies Commissioned a Photographer to Shoot with an 8×10 Camera

The clothing brand Dickies wanted to celebrate its 50th anniversary of their signature pair of trousers, so they commissioned George Muncey to take a series of portraits on his 8×10 large format camera.

In this 9-minute video, Muncey shows the background to the shoot and how it worked when shooting with this unique camera.

For the shoot, Muncey used people who actually where the trousers, rather than “typical models you’d see in a magazine.” It’s this that gave his shoot a much more realistic feel.

He wanted to capture the stars of his shots in their “natural habitat,” as well as against a more typical white background to round things off.

A number of his images suffered a “weird light leak,” and that happened simply from a flash putting too much pressure on the film slide holders, leaking some light onto the film itself. It looks kinda’ like a spotlight beaming up at the model from the edge of a catwalk.

The camera makes a satisfying click, rather than the thud of a mirror that most of us are used to thanks to DSLR cameras.

Over the three days of shooting, Muncey worked with a crew to bring the whole thing together. No doubt it requires quite a bit of manpower lugging around the massive 8×10 camera and all the slides.

You can find more of Muncey’s work on his website.


Image credits: Photographs by George Muncey/Dickies and used with permission


Source: PetaPixel

Dickies Commissioned a Photographer to Shoot with an 8×10 Camera

This LEGO Instax Camera is 90 Years Old

This LEGO Instax Camera is 90 Years Old

Albertino of Instax Magic created a unique camera that blends the old and the new. Half of it is made of LEGO, and half is a 90-year-old Zeiss-Ikon Trona folding plate camera.

The Trona was originally purchased from a camera collector in extremely worn but functioning condition. Albertino could immediately tell the camera had been well used in its former life.

“Holding such an antique to shoot in the street is an interesting experience,” Albertino writes. “The images always have a vintage feel, perhaps due to the color saturation and the contrast of the picture. It never needs an Instagram filter to achieve that.”

This old camera was paired with a LEGO back that features a motorized system for processing instant film. It takes Fuji Instax Mini packs for 10 instant film exposures, and new packs can be swapped in easily while out shooting.

“I think photographers in the past who used this camera would normally bring at most three sheets of films for a day of shooting,” says Albertino. “With the modern instant film, I can bring several packs of film with ten pieces each to shoot. It certainly makes the process more convenient for the busy modern day shooters as well as saving the cost of developing the films.”

Here are some examples of photos captured using this LEGO ancient camera:

You can find more of Albertino’s vintage camera projects over at Instax Magic.

(via Instax Magic via JCH)


Source: PetaPixel

This LEGO Instax Camera is 90 Years Old

Scam Alert: Phishing Scheme Targets Freelance Photographers

Scam Alert: Phishing Scheme Targets Freelance Photographers

A person falsely identifying himself as a fashion blogger for High Snobiety, the style and culture website, has been soliciting freelance photographers to rip them off in an apparent check-cashing scam. Going by the name of Alan Hurt, the individual has emailed a number of photographers offering them assignments that pay $2,000, including a $500 advance.

Photographer Jesse Dittmar, for one, received the offer via email and notified High Snobiety. Editor Jeff Carvalho told Dittmar that Hurt does not work for High Snobiety, and that the solicitation Dittmar received “is some sort of scam.” Carvalho also told Dittmar that other photographers had inquired about the solicitation.

Dittmar explained via email, “it’s most likely a check-cashing scam, where presumedly Hurt would send us a bad check as an advance and then ask us to advance money to a (fake) modeling agency (or something similar).”

Hurt’s email to Dittmar indicated he’d found Dittmar’s work on PhotoServe. Last week, PhotoServe issued a warning about the scam to its members.

HypeBeast has also issued an alert about the same scam—or a similar  one, warning that someone has been soliciting photographers for HypeBeast fashion shoots under false pretenses. “”The scammers have been issuing very convincing fake checks. By the time they bounce, the photographer has already shelled out money, which they pay to a fake account operated by the scammers,” HypeBeast attorney Jaime Wolf told PDN.

PDN corresponded with Hurt via email to inquire about details, at first without specifying the inquiry was from a journalist for a story. Hurt indicated that photographers are expected to pay talent and stylist expenses to an agency selected for them, not talent agencies of the photographers’ choosing.

After PDN told Hurt the inquiry was for a PDN story, and that High Snobiety said he was engaging in a scam, Hurt offered no further response.

Dittmar said of the Hurt’s scam: “If it was done well with better proof reading, and a more convincing pitch, it could certainly fool someone…[W]e at least responded [to the solicitation in its current form] before getting the confirmation from the client that this was fake.”

High Snobiety declined PDN’s request for an interview, but issued a statement through a spokesperson calling the scheme “a phishing scam aimed at soliciting cash from randomly selected photographers.”

The statement continued: “Highsnobiety Inc and Titel Media GmbH take cyber-security, phishing and the protection of personal data very seriously, and we have alerted authorities of this issue. Our apologies to anyone that has been affected. All official electronic correspondence from Highsnobiety should end with @highsnobiety.com. Please contact info[at]highsnobiety[.]com with any questions or if you believe that you have been targeted.”

The post Scam Alert: Phishing Scheme Targets Freelance Photographers appeared first on PDNPulse.


Source: PDN Pulse

Scam Alert: Phishing Scheme Targets Freelance Photographers

Using Ultraviolet Light to Make Nature Fluoresce in Photos

Using Ultraviolet Light to Make Nature Fluoresce in Photos

Ultraviolet photography is something that relatively few photographers explore, but it’s a fascinating realm to explore with less of an investment in equipment than most people think.

Much of my photography revolves around the world that we cannot see with our own eyes. This “unseen world” approach can make otherworldly beautiful images from everyday ordinary subjects. Using light beyond our own spectrum is a great way to start these explorations – enter the world of ultraviolet photography.

To clarify: There are two types of ultraviolet photography. UV reflectance and UV fluorescence. UV reflectance is using a light source that contains UV light (such as the sun or a full-spectrum light source) and collecting only the ultraviolet light that hits the camera sensor. This requires a camera modification similar to what you would do for infrared photography, but on the other end of the spectrum.

It can reveal hidden patterns in flowers that only insects can see, like a bulls-eye pattern in sunflowers and what effectively appears as a “landing strip” in many flowers to attract pollinators.

The bottom-right image above is made by collecting UV light. The bottom middle is visible light and the left is an infrared image of the same sunflower. While the dark pattern is certainly interesting, things become almost magical when you make the flower fluoresce (large image). UV fluorescence requires a regular unmodified camera, but careful attention to ensure only pure UV light hits the subject. If anything in the frame fluoresces, visible light bounces back to the camera.

Interestingly, just about everything in nature fluoresces to some degree. You may have heard about scorpions or certain millipedes glowing under UV light, but if you bring forward enough UV-only light, everything can “glow”. The intensity of the light is key, and it needs to be “pure” as even a fraction of a percentage of spill-over into the visible spectrum will contaminate your results.

This is a typical setup for an ultraviolet shot. Each of these Yongnuo 685 flashes has been modified to output exclusively UV light, and the process only takes about five minutes. You need to disassemble the flash (Warning: this is high voltage equipment you’re opening up. You can seriously hurt or kill yourself if the flash isn’t properly discharged and you touch the wrong components. If you’re unsure how to deal with equipment like this, give it to a professional.) and remove two pieces of plastic that are in front of the xenon flash tube. These control the flash beam but also block UV light.

There are two screws and a few clamps under the rubber circles on the sides of the flash, it’s not a complicated procedure. With these gone and the flash reassembled, you need to filter the light down to UV-only. I use a combination of two 77mm filters that do an awesome job: the Hoya U340 and the MidOpt BP365. Each of these filters on their own leak a very small portion of the visible spectrum; one leaks red, the other leaks violet. Together, they block it all. Conveniently, they also allow infrared light to pass through which the camera can’t see either, so they can serve multiple purposes.

The cost for each flash modification was around USD$500, so getting into this area of photography costs less than a good lens.

With three of these flashes at point-blank range at 100% output, the above image still needed to be shot at ISO 5000. Aphids being feasted on by a ladybug on a plum leaf never looked so bizarre. I’m unsure of the exact reason, but aphids and small spiders tend to fluoresce green.

Most insect eyes fluoresce blue, but flowers can contain many different colors — a yellow lady slipper orchid maintains its yellow “shoe”, but the ordinarily-green leaves glow red.

The key here is constant experimentation. Some flowers or insects are completely uninteresting in the way they fluoresce, while others are shockingly vibrant. It’s important to note that nothing can ever see the world this way — it requires that all visible light be filtered from the light source. Insects can see reflected UV, like this cicada image:

But when you photograph that same cicada in a dark room and collect the visible light? The clear wings turn into a science-fiction shade of glowing blue. The same is true for certain species of dragonflies, though most insects with smaller wings are unresponsive. Some research has been done into this and seems to link the elastomeric protein “resilin” and its nitrogen content to these glowing features but I’m shocked at the lack of scientific articles on the topic.

As a photographer (and not an entomologist or scientist in any way), I simply explore this unknown realm with childhood curiosity.


About the author: Don Komarechka is a nature, landscape, and macro photographer based in Barrie, Canada. His macro work has been highlighted in international publications. Don is an author, educator, and adventurer with a passion for revealing “the unseen world”. Visit his website here. You can also find more of his work on Facebook and Flickr.


Source: PetaPixel

Using Ultraviolet Light to Make Nature Fluoresce in Photos