Why Documentary Photography Needs to Fundamentally Change and Evolve

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Lead photo by Tuncay

Years ago, photojournalists were creating images that changed the world, our opinions on life, public policies, etc. The photo was powerful; and it arguably still is. But the inherent problem with the photo’s power these days has to do with a myriad of changes in society where the photo just hasn’t been able to keep up. Just think about it: years ago photography had a big part of ending the Vietnam War and exposing lots of other major issues with society. But these days, it’s not as effective. This isn’t only in the richer, more developed societies but instead all over the world. To understand why, we need to explore photography and culture’s relationship.

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Silent Killers Puts Pollution of the Ocean Front and Center in these Photos

All images for Silent Killers by Jose G Cano and Christine Ren. Used with permission.

“To stop derelict gear being left in the first place, requires international policy change and regulations & monitoring of the fishing industry.” stated Christine Ren about her project Silent Killers. The photo series has been making the rounds on the web and is designed to bring attention to a big problem: pollution of the water.

So naturally, we wanted to get to know a bit more about the creative message behind the project.

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Review: Lumu Power Light Meter (Apple iPhone)

For years and years, I always wondered why no one had any sort of flash enabled light meter available for the iPhone; but then Lumu went and got the Lumu Power Kickstarted. It may have taken quite a long time, but it’s finally out the door. The Lumu Power light meter is designed for the photographer that wants and needs to use a light meter but that doesn’t want to carry around an actual light meter. Instead, they want something small that they can tote around and use whenever they want or need. Plus it simply works with your iPhone. So why would you not want one?

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SwapSnap Wants to Take Hammer and Nails Out of Hanging Your Photos

If you’re one of those people who’s been awoken in the middle of the night by a photo falling off of your wall, you may want to consider what SwapSnap is trying to offer. Essentially, they’re a photo printing company that is trying to let you print your images with them and hang the images on your wall without damaging your walls. Essentially, the system uses a grippy surface that sticks to your wall and then uses magnets to hold the photos up. You can then place photos slightly over one another in an overlay fashion.

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How To Choose Your First Good Point and Shoot Camera

Point and Shoot cameras, once a staple of the middle-class family, has now largely been replaced with high-quality smartphone-based cameras. But there is still a good portion of the population who likes to have a standalone camera in their bag for when the smartphone doesn’t cut it, and those situations do exist. Smartphones aren’t nearly as versatile as a point and shoot camera with a zoom lens, nor do they offer the image quality or low light performance of a fixed prime lens compact point and shoot. But some of you may be asking yourselves how to choose your first good point and shoot camera? That is what we are here to answer for you today.

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This Underwater 8×10 Camera System Will Only Cost You $5,800

All images used courtesy of the eBay listing

To add a bit of extra sparkle to your photographic hobby, consider channelling your inner 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea and picking up this Underwater 8×10 camera system off of eBay. Yes, that’s right–you’d be shooting 8×10 film sheets under water. Pretty crazy, right? When you think of film cameras and going underwater, it isn’t unusual for the Nikonos to come up or even the Fujifilm underwater disposable cameras. But it isn’t every day that you consider something above medium format.

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Useful Photography Tip #180: Spot Meter A Portrait For the Skin, Focus on the Eyes

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Here’s yet another quick portrait photography tip for lots of photographers who have been reading the meters of their cameras but getting the readings wrong. You see, light meters in cameras tend to read a scene and meter for what you tell it to meter for. So with that said, if you’re metering a portrait, the scene will be metered for the entire scene in the evaluative setting. Photographers have otherwise tried spot metering. Spot metering up until recently took a meter reading of the center of the image and then you recomposed based on that. But these days, you have the option to set the spot metering up with the actual focus point itself.

Now, if you’re spot metering, you probably won’t be metering for a person’s eyes necessarily because that can throw off an exposure. Instead, you’re going to focus on the eyes but you’re going to meter for what’s more important–their skin and clothing. To do this to your absolute best ability, I strongly recommend simply metering manually vs using something like aperture priority and overexposing by a stop. If I had exposed for the eyes of the subject in this post, the skin would have been much brighter.

For most camera systems this first requires you to check the metering of the spot that you’re working with–which should be the subject’s skin. Then set the metering manually. After this, simply move the focusing point to the eye, focus, and shoot. But with Sony systems you can focus on the face, take a reading, meter manually, and then activate the eye focus option to focus automatically on the subject’s eyes.

Pretty nifty, huh? Typically, if the light isn’t changing you’ll have the same reading over and over again.

Developing Blog Content as a Photographer: The Ins and Outs

If you’re a professional, employable photographer then you obviously understand the reasons for having a business related blog. I’m not talking about just having a Tumblr or something like that. Lots of photographers tend to use Instagram and say that’s their blog, but blogging has a whole lot more value than that. If you have one, you realize that value already and can probably skip over some of the content here. But if you don’t have one, you’re probably a photographer with no serious intentions with their images. And that’s fine; but for the rest of us…

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