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The folks over at COOPH are back at it again with a new video called 7 Funky Photography Tips. They include a number of ways to make your photography better or much different: including using balloons, umbrellas, freelensing and other ideas that you may have forgotten about or not thought about in a while. If you don’t have time to try these today, give it a thought this weekend.

It’s surely worth the inspiration; and their video is after the jump.

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Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Zeiss 50mm f2 Loxia review product photos (6 of 6)ISO 2001-125 sec at f - 4.0

Composing portrait images with a 50mm lens not only has to do with the normal composition rules, but also with elements of a person’s body. For example, they always say that you should focus on the eyes, and the folks at Weekly Imogen seem to agree. Their first tip has to do with specific face placement. They state that the eyes should be in the upper third area of the image because of the natural way that it draws a viewer in and lets them explore the rest of the image.

Imogen also says that using natural frames helps. The rest of the video on the perfect composition of portrait images with a 50mm lens is after the jump.

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We all know that Sports Illustrated let go of all their staff photographers, but that doesn’t mean that the company still can’t give great advice on how approach editors. A.A. Productions recently released a video interviewing SI’s Director of Photography Brad Smith and he says that email is actually one of the toughest ways to get through to an Editor. Mr. Smith reasons that it can get caught in spam and there are just so many of them to deal with that an editor can be overwhelmed.

In fact, though he doesn’t outright say it, Mr. Smith recommends sending some sort of photography pitch/package, calling to try to get 15 minutes of his time, or other more interpersonal forms of communication such as a portfolio deck.

Additionally, you should make it easy to find more out about you. All of your contact information should be in one spot and your pitches should be precise and to the point.

Beyond that, look and present yourself as a professional. After all, he’s hiring you represent his company at an event.

The video is after the jump. But also be sure to read the words of Damian Strohmeyer and Peter Reed Miller on shooting Super Bowls and general tips as well.

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All images by Calvin Hobson. Read more at the Phoblographer.

Photographer Calvin Hobson has a very unique story as a photographer. He’s a former armed service member, and always had the creative bug in him. Calvin had the opportunity to travel a lot with the US Air Force, and since leaving he has transitioned into shooting weddings. Like many wedding photographers, he had faced many of the problems of an oversaturated market. But he found ways to overcome them not only through his work, but his people skills.

As many photographers will tell you, people skills are one of the best things that you can have a professional.

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Fujifilm Astia 100F with Canon 85mm f1.2 rendering

Fujifilm Astia 100F with Canon 85mm f1.2 rendering

Portraiture is an art form not only within photography, but in drawings and paintings. Years before photography, artists were commissioned to make people look their best in drawings and oil paintings. Photography is different in that we can capture a much more true likeness–which is a blessing and a curse. Taking a portrait of someone requires planning, attention to details, and overall a vision. If the person has an idea of how they want to look, then you need to bring that to pixels. But otherwise, you should have a vision and follow a step by step process.

Here are things to remember before you take a portrait–from a guy that’s been doing it for years and years.

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Photo by Todd Owyoung

Photo by Todd Owyoung

All images in this story were used with permission from their respective owners

Music photography is the passion of so many–and it can be a very tough business to get into without the initiative to build connections. This is true of so many different types of photography genres, but it especially true when covering the music scene. It can make starting out really tough.

We talked to seven famous concert photographers at the top of their game about what they wish they knew when they first started out.

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