13 Great Lenses for Capturing Candid Photos

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Sony 35mm f1.4 Full Frame E Mount lens first impressions product images (1 of 6)ISO 4001-100 sec at f - 2.5

Capturing candid images is easy, but only those of us with the acquired skill are able to really show off some of the most frank moments in time. At this point in technology, it’s very tough for mostly any lens to have a hard time capturing great photos. But some, because of inherent qualities do a better one. Whether it’s firmware updates, an aperture that let’s you separate the subject from the background, etc it’s all possible.

We scoured our reviews index to find lenses with good focusing abilities and an aperture that lets you make your subject stand out when capturing candids. Check them out after the jump.

Continue reading…

Darren Williams: Creating Wedding Portraiture Strobist Style


All images by Darren Williams. Used with permission.

Darren Williams is a photojournalistic wedding photographer who integrates creative portraiture and strobism into his work. His creative vision can be described as almost painterly–for when you look at the work it seems magical in so many different ways. He’s based in North Wales though shoots throughout the UK and Europe.

And for Darren, getting the creative vision he wants it really all about the process.


Continue reading…

The Psychology of Creative Wedding Photography

Kownslar Wedding-244

Photo Essays is a series on the Phoblographer where photographers get to candidly speak their mind about a specific subject or project of theirs. Want to submit? Send [email protected]

All images by Travis and Nina Tank. Used with permission. Be sure to also follow them on Instagram.

Something that I have spent the last few years trying to perfect in wedding photography is creating moments. Raw, real emotion is actually very difficult to achieve when you have a semi-stranger in your face expecting you to model. I have found there to be a significant difference in what sets photographers apart… there are ones who create moments and some that simply capture them. While yes we are all technically “capturing” moments, photojournalism in its purest form doesn’t tend to lend itself to the creative imagery that couples want or hire us for.

Those laughs that you see, the smiles and the people who look like they are having a good time are actually having a good time and laughing with us. This is the reason why few photographers seem to have more stiff imagery in their portfolio than authentic emotions. The good news? It only takes a simple switch in your mindset to completely change the way you view yourself as a photographer and how you capture any subject on the other side of your camera.

Continue reading…

The Creative Mentality Behind Intimate Portraiture (NSFW)


All images by Jason Bach. Used with permission.

“We live in a world where media & film censorship favors violence over the beauty of the naked form.” says photographer Jason Bach about how he got into intimate portraiture. “To me, its an appalling concept and should be reversed – we should be embracing and teaching younger generations that sexuality and nudity is natural and a much more positive representation of humanity than what violence offers.” You see, Jason isn’t one of those guys on the social interwebs using nudity to become Instafamous–he creates genuinely intimate, sensual and beautiful work.

Jason Bach is a wedding and commercial photographer who owns his studio The Photogenic Lab based in Denver, CO. He labels his distinctive style as “playful, innovative images that wrap stories into single moments.” Indeed, it makes a lot of sense. And when it comes to creating intimate scenes, he says that it’s all about the serious nature behind the work.

Continue reading…

What I Learned from One Year Shooting Manual Flash

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Direct flash Macro tutorial (2 of 3)ISO 4001-30 sec at f - 2.8

“I’m not exactly sure how I can go back,” I said to a photographer the other night in a business dinner. Our conversation briefly touched on using flash and how manual is the way to go over TTL for many applications. For the past year, I’ve been shooting exclusively with manual flash: I guess you can equate it to those projects photographers do involving one lens and one camera or just shooting in manual for a year. But the difference here is that with manual flash, you’re creating your own light and you’re dictating how the scene looks even more so than anything else because you’re adding an extra layer on its final perception.

After spending one year shooting with just manual flashes, it’s something that I recommend almost every photographer try.

Continue reading…

Jocelyn Voo: Photographing Orthodox Jewish Weddings in America


All images by Jocelyn Voo. Used with permission. This is a post in a special series done with R/WeddingPhotography on ethnic weddings in America.

“Many of the weddings I shoot are ethnic, but I shoot quite frequently in the orthodox Jewish circuit, despite not being Jewish myself,” said photographer Jocelyn Voo in her initial email contact to us. Jocelyn runs Everly Studios–and got her start as a photojournalist and documentary photographer. Naturally, the skills learned there transitioned well into the wedding business for her.

Orthodox Jewish weddings tend to differ from the commonplace Christian weddings here in America–and as a result even many of the photographers are Orthodox Jews themselves since they already know and understand the culture. However, my time at B&H Photo Video Pro Audio taught me that there are many different tiers and each couple makes their own individual decisions on how they practice and their belief system.

I talked with Jocelyn about the rituals and what it’s like photographing these ceremonies.

Continue reading…

How Photographers Should be Using Social Media

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Instagram for the iPad (1 of 1)ISO 2001-20 sec at f - 4.0

“It’s not about the ROI.”

That’s what social media managers and influencers used to say all the time. ROI is short for return on investment–and as most photographers know, you’re bound to invest a heck of a lot more into this industry than you will ever give back.

But in today’s day and age, while many professional photographers spend most of their time on marketing, we should be using our skills as creative image makers to actually market ourselves and the types of work that we do much better. What you’ll learn is that social media isn’t about trying to create a following and gain returns from it, it’s about proving to people that they should be interested in you and your work.

Continue reading…

How to Think in Terms of Photographs

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Fujifilm 16-55mm f2.8 WR review Graham's images (16 of 19)ISO 4001-60 sec at f - 2.8

It’s extremely common for most photographers these days to simply just hold down a shutter button and hope that they get the right shot. But in the end, that just gives you loads and loads of extra images that you don’t necessarily need and you’ll end up with less keepers than you’d like. Fixing that problem means that you need to think about (in the brief window of time) the end result. And for that, you need to think about what you possibly see in a scene and how you can quickly capture it to ensure that you deliver a result that your mind’s eye saw.

Sounds really, really tough to do, right? It’s not that bad if you make the job easier for yourself by doing things like shooting in aperture priority where you have a bit of control over the image or you have an autofocus point already pre-selected for the scene. Automation of some of the settings lets you get to that end game image that you have in your head and greatly improves your chances of actually getting it.

Continue reading…