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20130318_0008 Creating the Photograph is an original series where we interview photographers about a photo that they shot and how it was achieved. The results are some knowledge passed on to you. Want to be featured? Email chrisgampat[at]thephoblographer[dot]com. Lárus Sigurðarson is a photographer based in Iceland–and whose work that we absolutely fell in love with upon finding this image on his 500px page. He is a commercial, wedding, editorial, landscape and portrait photographer whose work is mesmerizing due to the ideas and scenes that he creates. Not only does he have excellent ideas, he is also a master of lighting and knows how to get the image that he has in his head based on his original concept. We asked Mr. Sigurdarson about his image above, called “Blue.” Here’s his story. [click to continue…]

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Nikon D810 high ISO samples Speakeasy Dollhouse NYC black and whites (2 of 2)ISO 128001-60 sec at f - 1.8

There are two major ways that many photographers know to convert their images to black and white. The first is a method used by many people new to photo editing: desaturation. When you desaturate the colors you literally take away any sort of vividness to them. The other method is converting to greyscale–and many more experienced shooters do this method instead.

So what’s the difference between desaturation vs grayscale? We asked Sharad Mangalick, the Senior Product Manager of Digital Imaging at Adobe about what each does particularly when working with the images in Adobe Lightroom or Photoshop. According to him “When you desaturate the image, you are toning down the color. The color information is still there though. Clicking on the black & white button (or using the B&W portion of the HSL panel) converts the image to grayscale. Converting to grayscale allows you to tweak the B&W mix, which is not something that can do when you desaturate the image.”

So more or less, it has to do with how much editing you want to do after you make the image into a black and white. If you just want to change it and not do any sort of extra editing, then desaturation could be okay. But otherwise, you may want to edit particular color regions to see what the results will turn into. For example, the image above was mostly in a blue cast, and choosing to boost the luminance in the blue levels made specific parts of the image brighter indeed.

Keep this in mind when you’re thinking about turning your images into black and whites.

landfall

All photographs by Erik Johansson. Used with permission.

Swedish and Berlin-based mixed media photographer Erik Johansson has created astounding work that is perhaps only surpassed by his remarkable process. We featured an image of his earlier on. At first glance, his surreal images – essentially landscape photographs transformed into something more magical - rouse wonder in people, and upon closer inspection, they are dressed to impress, with every minor detail considered and perfected.

It’s his process, however, that really had us at hello. While many Photoshop artists use stock images to create their art, Erik is going out of his way to make his photographs more realistic and entirely his own. He meticulously draws, paints, creates miniature sets and cardboard cutouts, and shoots different spots and locations himself, all the while paying great attention to every single detail, before blending all these aspects together in a single photograph.

Erik tells the Phoblographer:

“To me photography is a way to collect material to realize the ideas in my mind. I get inspired by things around me in my daily life and all kinds of things I see. Although one photo can consist hundreds of layers I always want it to look like it could have been captured. Every new project is a new challenge and my goal is to realize it as realistic as possible.”

Erik’s dedication to the craft is something we don’t see every day, which makes his work all the more inspiring. And with his painstaking creations, he actualizes images in his mind and molds them into something real for others.

As he points out, “I don’t capture moments, I capture ideas.”

See Erik Johansson’s breathtaking work and his behind-the-scenes videos after the jump.

To see more of Erik’s work, visit his website.
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Mother Nature

Creating the Photograph is an original series where we interview photographers about a photo that they shot and how it was achieved. The results are some knowledge passed on to you. Want to be featured? Email chrisgampat[at]thephoblographer[dot]com.

Tracie Maglosky is the first female Olympus Trailblazer; but beyond working with the company she is also a wedding and portrait photographer that hails from Cincinnati, Ohio. And for anyone that believes that only DSLRs can create great images that will please your clients at a wedding, Ms. Maglosky will surely prove you wrong. Tracie does what many true professional photographers do: work with ideas and creativity to give their clients the beautiful images that make their jaws drop. And that’s partially the concept behind the image above that was done for a maternity shoot.

Here’s Tracie’s story.

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All photographs taken by Josh Malik. Used with permission.

Nineteen-year-old Los Angeles-based photographer Josh Malik is proof that dreams do come true, if you persist. Teaching himself photography and the magic of Photoshop, this conceptual photographer left his small Indiana town life behind to pursue his passion in the big city, straight out of high school and with less than two years worth of experience to back him.

Today, he’s living a photographer’s dream. He’s now a household name on Flickr and is on equal footing with the Flickr celebrity photographers that have been his inspiration since the beginning. His signature dark, earthly, and surreal conceptual portraits have amassed him followers and fans by the thousands, and for perfectly good reasons. His images not only incredibly and beautifully tell the stories and themes he’s trying to convey but also effectively transform his subjects so that they often seem to become one with the elements of nature.

More of Josh Malik’s work after the jump.

Josh Malik is teaming up with Jenna Martin for an introduction to underwater photography workshop on September 20-21 in California’s stunning Catalina Islands. Spots are limited so sign up now. For more of Josh Malik’s work, follow him on Flickr and/or Facebook

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IbarionexThePhoblographerEditingTips01

One of the hardest things for any photographer to do is to edit down their images to a select few. Whether they are images from a recent shoot or a body of work destined for a web gallery or portfolio, the process of editing is no easy task. It’s not something that’s taught alongside learning about shutter speed, aperture and ISO.

It’s an important skill to develop as a weak portfolio or web gallery can diminish the impact of one’s best work. Here are some suggestions that may help you to refine the way you evaluate, select and organize your best photographs.

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