This is How Photographers Stage Scenes to Win Prizes

This is How Photographers Stage Scenes to Win Prizes

Photojournalist A. M. Ahad was at a train station in Bangladesh when he came across a group of photographers pointing their cameras at a young man who was leaning out of a window and striking a prayerful pose.

Ahad, an Associated Press photographer based in Bangladesh and a co-founder of the Absurd Photos photo agency co-op, recorded this 18-second video of what unfolded:

Ahad then shared the video to his Facebook page, pointing to it as an example of how prizing-hunting photographers have been descending upon Bangladesh during major annual Muslim holidays in recent years to try and capture award-winning “photojournalism”.

“For last couple of years, during the Bishwa Ijtema and Eid al-Adha time, there are hundreds of Malaysian and Chinese tourists carting cameras and doing things,” Ahad tells PetaPixel. “They are all around making images and ruining things for professional photographers.”

Ahad says that since many of these photographers aren’t professional photojournalists, they don’t abide by the standard rules of ethical journalist conduct. The photographers routinely pose subjects in eye-catching ways, and passers-by are often more than happy to oblige, as “people think it’s natural to give a pose if a photographer asks,” Ahad says.

“What’s happening in our city?,” Ahad writes on Facebook. “Bangladesh is not for people like this who [come] to ruin professional photographers etiquette for the sake of winning medal[s].”

Ahad says that some of the photographers pose as photojournalists who were sent by media organizations when asking people to pose for pictures.

“Stop telling us that you are a foreign media covering the congregation when you have no proof to show us,” Ahad writes. “Nowadays, it’s very hard to make a frame with people like you hogging a place and staging a scene.

“Just stay home, for goodness sake.”

Source: PetaPixel

This is How Photographers Stage Scenes to Win Prizes

An 8-Minute Crash Course on Blending Modes in Photoshop

An 8-Minute Crash Course on Blending Modes in Photoshop

Want to get a good grasp of Photoshop’s Blend modes? Here’s an 8-minute crash course on the subject by the Photoshop Training Channel. They may be one of the least understood features, but blending modes can be extremely useful when creating composites and retouching.

So what do blending modes actually do? They take pixels from a single layer and blend them with pixels from another layer, and subsequently create a “completely new effect.”

Without blending modes, the only practical way to blend two layers is by adjusting the Opacity or Fill of the layers in question. Luckily for us, there are 27 blending modes you can utilize to tell Photoshop to perform a blend operation against each individual pixel, and that opens up a world of possibilities. Each of the blend modes is sorted into one of 6 different categories:

It’s important to visualize blending modes and how they work properly, however. The layer you apply a blend mode to is itself being applied to the base layer. The result is a mix of the base and the blend layers.

Check out the full video above to get a great overview of what blending modes can do for your post production work. And if that video whets your appetite, Photoshop Training Channel also has a much longer 41-minute video which explains each of the individual modes in depth:

Source: PetaPixel

An 8-Minute Crash Course on Blending Modes in Photoshop

TV Star Asks for Free Wedding Photos in Exchange for Exposure. Oops.

TV Star Asks for Free Wedding Photos in Exchange for Exposure. Oops.

A UK reality TV star has rubbed the photography community the wrong way after it was revealed that he has been asking wedding photographers to shoot his upcoming wedding in exchange for social media exposure.

Jay Hutton, best known for starring in the British reality television series Tattoo Fixers, has reportedly been sending out the following request to wedding photographers through his representatives:

“Thank you for the interest in Jay Hutton Wedding, we have received a number of emails from some great photographers and I first want to outline the expectations of the agreement,” the email opens. So far so good. But then it becomes clear that instead of paying for the wedding with real money, Hutton is trying to pay by crediting the photos properly when sharing them on social media.

“The promotional value of social media is second to none and something we charge a great deal for,” the representative writes. “In exchange for photographing the day Jay will credit selected photos on social media to the photographer and their website.”

But that’s not all — there are some other “sweet perks” as well. First, the wedding photographer will have permission to share “preselected photos” on their own website, and travel and food expenses will be covered as well.

London-based photographer Jake Owens was one of the shooters who received this email after inquiring about the opportunity. He wasn’t amused by the response and posted the conversation to Facebook, sparking a great deal of discussion. Soon this screenshot was being shared far and wide by incensed photographers.

“What a joke,” one photographer tells PetaPixel. “I’m sure he wouldn’t appreciate someone asking for a free tattoo.”

Owens has since written a blog post, titled “Exposure < Real Life Money,” with his thoughts on the whole controversy.

“The response we (and others in the industry – this isn’t a personal thing) received was, to say the least, insulting,” Owens writes. “I’m not gunna lie, we were both pretty pissed off, and took to social media for a grumble […]

“My fear with this whole situation is that somebody is going to take this offer up, and the gentleman in question will win. He’s getting his wedding photographed for free. The loser though, is the person who is perhaps new to the business, and naive enough to believe that this is a really great opportunity.”

“You’re doing a job, and you should be paid for it,” Owens concludes. “The creative industry (industries) are cut throat and competitive enough as it is, we shouldn’t be looking to screw each other over.”

(via Daily Post via Fstoppers)

Source: PetaPixel

TV Star Asks for Free Wedding Photos in Exchange for Exposure. Oops.

Here’s the First Footage from the New Kodak Super 8 Film Camera

Here’s the First Footage from the New Kodak Super 8 Film Camera

Kodak announced at CES in January 2016 that it would be bringing back the famous Super 8 camera as a film camera with digital features. Now, two years later, Kodak has just released the first footage captured with the camera in the 1-minute video above.

The new Kodak Super 8 C-mount camera uses the company’s new Super 8 films.

Its features and specs include variable speed shooting (18, 24, 25, 36 FPS), a 6mm f/1.2 Richo lens, manual aperture and focusing, a swiveling 4-inch display, a built-in light meter, and a jog wheel user interface.

Here’s the latest update by Kodak on the progress of the camera:

“We’re on the verge of testing our latest design of the drive train, and that testing will help us to understand whether the current design will meet our rigorous performance standards,” program director Steve Parsons says. “One of our largest challenges is finding suppliers that are capable of making these precise parts.”

“We are still using the same cartridge system, but we focused a lot on the film gate, where the film is being guided, where the film is being stabilized during the process of getting an image exposed,” says product manager Holger Schwaerzel. “And that’s where this camera really has improved a lot. The steadiness of the image which is always impacting the image quality as an overall impression has been dramatically improved.”

Filmmakers have been getting their hands on prototype cameras and shooting projects with it, as you can see in the sample footage above.

One of Kodak’s goals is to make this new Kodak Super 8 camera “as easy to use as any DSLR.” To that end, Kodak is also launching a new online service called “The Darkroom,” which will allow customers to both purchase film and process exposed film:

Kodak will provide the address to ship the cartridge. The lab will process the film, scan the film, upload the scans into the Darkroom and notify the customer that the scans are available to begin using. This lets filmmakers access their imagery before receiving the physical film back.

The new Kodak Super 8 will cost around $2,500 to $3,000 and will be available for purchase through the Kodak website and through retailers starting later this year.

Source: PetaPixel

Here’s the First Footage from the New Kodak Super 8 Film Camera

Leica Unveils 75mm f/2 and 90mm f/2 Lenses for the SL System

Leica Unveils 75mm f/2 and 90mm f/2 Lenses for the SL System

Leica has announced two new prime lenses for its Leica SL-System: the APO-Summicron-SL 75mm f/2 ASPH and APO-Summicron SL 90mm f/2 ASPH.

As part of a new line of “high-performance Summicron-SL lenses,” the two lenses have been designed and constructed in Germany using “exceptional materials” to allow for a “long work life.”

Both lenses have fast and silent autofocus systems, with a “considerably” close focus limit: 0.50 meters (19.69 inches) for the 75mm, and 0.60 meters (23.62 inches) for the 90mm. The entire focus range can be traveled in an impressive 250 milliseconds. That’s thanks to the “extremely powerful and robust” stepping motors with DSD (Dual Syncro Drive).

Leica says that it paid meticulous attention to the prevention of stray light and reflections during the construction of the lenses, and together with high-quality coatings to each lens surface has meant for unavoidable reflections to be reduced to a minimum.

The lenses are also Apochromatic (APO), meaning they are corrected to allow photographers to capture photos in high contrast situations with minimal chromatic aberration. They’re constructed of 11 elements (in 9 groups), one of which is aspherical, and all elements feature anomalous partial dispersion.

Both lenses have 9 diaphragm blades, are sealed, and have a filter thread of 67mm. The 75mm lens weighs 720 grams, and the 90mm weighs 700 grams.

The Leica 75mm f/2 and 90mm f/2 lenses will be available in February 2018, costing $4,750 and $5,150 respectively. Leica will also be launching a 35mm f/2 and 50mm f/2 lens to the join this new series in the second half of 2018.

Source: PetaPixel

Leica Unveils 75mm f/2 and 90mm f/2 Lenses for the SL System

Nikon’s Full Frame Mirrorless to Have New Z-Mount: Report

Nikon’s Full Frame Mirrorless to Have New Z-Mount: Report

Nikon’s upcoming full frame mirrorless camera may not be compatible with F-mount lenses without the use of an additional adapter. A new report suggests that the company has developed a new “Z-mount” for its professional full frame mirrorless system.

During CES 2018 in Las Vegas last week, Nikon Rumors heard the interesting rumor that Nikon will introduce a new Z-mount with an external diameter of and a flange focal distance of 16mm.

By comparison, the Nikon 1 series mirrorless system has a flange focal distance of 17mm with its relatively tiny 1-inch CX sensor. The Nikon F-mount full frame system has a flange focal distance of 46.5mm and an external diameter of 44mm. The Sony E-mount, which is used on Sony’s full-frame cameras, has a flange focal distance of 18mm and an external diameter of 46.1mm.

A comparison of sensor sizes. Full frame and Nikon CX sizes are indicated with arrows. Image by Moxfyre and licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0.

The Z-mount will be “[d]esigned for full frame mirrorless cameras,” Nikon Rumors writes. “Keep in mind that ‘Z-mount’ may not be the final marketing name, but I believe the dimensions are right.”

Nikon said in July 2017 that it was actively building a camera that would “raise the bar,” and the company followed up in September 2017 by saying that it must go full frame if it was to be competitive in the mirrorless market. Patents filed by Nikon for full frame lenses emerged around the same time.

Canon is also turning its attention to the mirrorless market, recently asking its professionals what features and specs they would be enticed by in a professional mirrorless camera.

“This is where Canon could really have an advantage,” writes Canon Rumors. “If they can somehow make the 130 million or so EF lenses compatible with a full frame mirrorless without an adaptor, they won’t have a hard time getting Canon DSLR shooters to add a full frame mirrorless to their kit.”

Source: PetaPixel

Nikon’s Full Frame Mirrorless to Have New Z-Mount: Report

Ep. 246: Can They Really Not See This in Italy? – and more

Ep. 246: Can They Really Not See This in Italy? – and more

Episode 246 of the PetaPixel Photography Podcast.
Download MP3 –  Subscribe via iTunesGoogle Playemail or RSS!

Featured: Sony Artisan of Imagery, Robert Evans

In This Episode

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Show Opener:
Sony Artisan of Imagery, Robert Evans opens the show. Thanks Robert!

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More at

Canon makes an interesting error and Elia Locardi disagrees. (#)

Two credible reports of issues with certain Fujifilm issues. (#)

Word that Canon may be firming up a feature set for its future full-frame mirrorless system. (#)

Kodak introduces the Scanza…which isn’t as 2018 as its cryptocurrency endeavors. (#)

Facebook is limiting what you and your followers see…and what to do about it. (#)

Flying your drone drunk in New Jersey may officially be a problem soon. (#)


My other podcast with Brian Matiash, the No Name Photo Show.

Connect With Us

Thank you for listening to the PetaPixel Photography Podcast! Connect with me, Sharky James on TwitterInstagram and Facebook (all @LensShark) as we build this community.

We’d love to answer your question on the show. Leave us an audio question through our voicemail widget, comment below or via social media. But audio questions are awesome!

You can also cut a show opener for us to play on the show! As an example: “Hi, this is Matt Smith with Double Heart Photography in Chicago, Illinois, and you’re listening to the PetaPixel Photography Podcast with Sharky James!”

Source: PetaPixel

Ep. 246: Can They Really Not See This in Italy? – and more

How to Photoshop Portraits in the Style of Pam Dave Zaring’s Family Photos

How to Photoshop Portraits in the Style of Pam Dave Zaring’s Family Photos

Want to retouch your photos to look just like Pam Dave Zaring’s amazingly bad family photos that have been going viral? Photoshop expert Antti Karppinen has just released a tutorial showing how you can achieve the exact same look in Photoshop.

In case you missed it the first time around, a woman named Pam Dave Zaring just sparked a huge viral sensation on the Internet after sharing what she claims are family photos delivered by a professional photographer Zaring had paid $250.

Karppinen studied the photos and broke down the steps you’ll need to take to correct harsh shadows in the same way. Here’s the photo he started with:

First, you’ll need to take a dark brush and bring more definition to the eyes, nose, and mouth by drawing them in over the original photo.

You then smooth out the subject’s skin by using the Mixer Brush Tool with the Wet setting at 50% and Sample All Layers checked.

Painting some more colors into the facial features and add some eyebrows, and you’re getting close to your final result.

The final step is to drop the Saturation of your photo and use Selective Color to cool down the tones.

Here’s a before-and-after comparison showing the effectiveness of this technique:

Watch the fantastic 11-minute tutorial video above for the full step-by-step guide on this retouching process. You can also find more of Karppinen’s work and tutorials on his YouTube channel, website, Facebook, and Instagram.

Source: PetaPixel

How to Photoshop Portraits in the Style of Pam Dave Zaring’s Family Photos

‘Tilt-Shift Effect’ Drone Shots of Tiny Kayakers in a Tiny World

‘Tilt-Shift Effect’ Drone Shots of Tiny Kayakers in a Tiny World

Here’s a beautiful 2-minute short film by Raphael Boudreault-Simard of Flow Motion Aerials that shrinks kayakers and the beautiful outdoors into a miniature world using a tilt-shift effect.

“We shrunk two kayakers and this happened,” writes Red Bull, which published the video.

Boudreault-Simard was a kayaker himself before his career was cut short by a shoulder injury and surgery a few years ago. He then started flying a camera drone and picked up aerial filmmaking.

For this short film, Boudreault-Simard piloted his drone through difficult terrain to film athletes Aniol Serrasolses and Nouria Newman doing their thing in British Columbia, Canada. After 5 intense days of trekking and shooting, Boudreault-Simard edited his aerial footage, speeding up the frame rate and carefully applied the digital tilt-shift effect (his drone doesn’t support a tilt-shift lens).

Voila! Tiny kayakers riding rough waters in a tiny world.

(via Red Bull via Reddit)

Source: PetaPixel

‘Tilt-Shift Effect’ Drone Shots of Tiny Kayakers in a Tiny World

Shooting a Rolleiflex with Studio Flash and Rolleinars

Shooting a Rolleiflex with Studio Flash and Rolleinars

In this fast-changing age of digital photography, one ingredient missing is a full frame square format camera or digital back. Yes, you can always crop off for a square, but this is not the same as looking through a dedicated square format camera with full resolution. So, what does a photographer preferring the square format do? My option has always been to shoot square format film cameras.

This article is about a studio shoot using a Rolleiflex T, Rolleinars 1, 2 and 3, and a Profoto D1 Air 500 w/s monolight. I have no experience with any other Rolleiflex models, so please research flash synchronization with your particular equipment, and because Rolleiflex cameras are antiques (mine was originally purchased in 1959 as per registration card), make sure your camera has been serviced and is ready to shoot. My Rolleiflex was fitted with x-synchronization from the factory which made my preference of shooting with remote control flawless.

I enjoy abstract art and decided to shoot geometric shapes for this test. I find playing with shapes fundamental to how I approach framing shots. I like to keep things simple with lighting, so I will use one light with mirrors-as-fill light, and the camera will be mounted on my studio camera stand. Take note that because of the waist level design, the camera will be low to the ground since I am 5’3”.

Profoto D1 Air 500, Westcott Round Softbox, Mirrors as Fill Light (custom made), Profoto Air, Studio Stand

Here is the connection between my studio light and the Rolleiflex, a basic PC Sync Cord with a 3.5mm mini plug to PC (Prontor-Compur). I buy these a few at a time because from my experience, the PC cord is the first to break the connection between camera and flash. Before I retired from commercial work, I had Paramount Cords make custom cords for my equipment, and I may resort to that again, but as long as I have a few in the studio, I have backups. Different remotes may use different sized mini plugs, so do your research here as well. If your light does not have a remote-control trigger, use a cord that fits your light’s PC connection and your camera.

Common PC Sync Cord with 3.5mm Mini Plug that Fits Air Remote and Rolleiflex T
PC Sync Cord Connection Between Air Remote and Rolleiflex T

Now that the lighting is set, I can test the Rolleinars. Why am I testing these? Because the first time I used them, I screwed up a few photos by not paying attention to a very important Red Dot. The newest of the Rolleinars come in a set of two. The smaller lens is for the taking lens (bottom lens takes the picture), and the larger lens is for the seeing lens (top lens is for seeing). The top part of the Rolleinar is larger because it incorporates a prism along with the diopter that corrects for close focusing parallax.

Rolleinar 3 (Bay 1): Seeing Lens (left) and Taking Lens (right)

If you do not have the Red Dot aligned as shown in the photo, “what you see is not what you get.” At least in my case that is what happened, as I lost about a third of my photo. Not only did I want to test for parallax in this session, but I also wanted to see from a standing position what I could do with the power of the Rolleinars.

Rolleinar Red Dot in Correct Position

The Results

The photos below were shot at f/16 with Acros 100 developed in Pyrocat HD. The film was scanned on an Epson V700 and post-processed in Lightroom. There was no stacking of filters and the four photos were shot in an orderly sequence: no Rolleinar, Rolleinar 1, 2 and 3. The following photos are shown not in the sequence as shot, and it is up to your vision to try to guess which Rolleinar was used. I hope you have enjoyed what you have read and seen in this article. Happy Holidays!

About the author: Darlene Almeda is a commercial photographer and photography teacher of over 30 years. You can find more of her work and writing on her website and blog. This article was also published here.

Source: PetaPixel

Shooting a Rolleiflex with Studio Flash and Rolleinars