Pauleth Ip Pauleth Ip

All articles by Pauleth Ip

 

Some of the Most Annoying Things about Cameras and Lenses

Short product cycles have given us progress and innovations that camera and lens manufacturers sometimes screw up. Every so often, these misses make us wonder what the engineers were thinking. At best, they’re annoying quirks that leave us scratching our heads. At worst, these quirks are so egregious that the camera or lens is too infuriating to use. Photographers pick up a specific piece of gear because they want to shoot with it–not chuck it across the room. Here are some of the most annoying things about cameras and lens that really grinds our gears....
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Getting the Best Results When Shooting with Natural Light at Home

One of the fundamental tenets behind being a photographer is the mastery of light. Cameras and lenses aside, light is the most important element in image-making. Many professionals prefer to shoot with artificial lighting thanks to their ability to deliver consistent and repeatable results. However, artificial lighting can be intimating for some. The arrival of the COVID-19 pandemic has introduced new challenges as well. Even for photographers that are comfortable shooting with artificial light, not all of them own artificial lighting or have access to them while they’re sheltering in place. The good news is that natural light is still available (provided that the weather cooperates). As long as there’s light, we as photographers can create. And right now, the simple act of creating can be an important therapeutic distraction for many. Check out these natural light photography tips to help you create great images even when you’re stuck at home....
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Why You Should Adore the Awesome 50mm Lens for Photography

As the Reviews Editor for The Phoblographer, I’m often solicited for lens recommendations from beginner photographers. Time and time again, I find myself recommending the 50mm focal length. 50mm lenses make for great additions to every photographer’s arsenal. This is especially true for those just starting out and wanting to graduate beyond their kit lenses. It’s a versatile focal length that bridges the gap between wide-angle and telephoto. 50mm lenses, particularly f1.8 versions, are very affordable as well. So versatile, in fact, that many photographers colloquially refer to their budget 50mm lens as a “Nifty Fifty.” On the fence about picking up a Nifty Fifty of your very own? Head on after the jump to see all that you can achieve with the 50mm focal length....
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The Phoblographer’s Guide to Rembrandt Lighting

When it comes to portrait lighting techniques, there are a ton of variations to choose from. For many portrait photographers, Rembrandt lighting is among one of the most popular. The technique is named after Rembrandt Harmenszoon van Rijn, the prodigious 17th-century Dutch master painter whose portraiture subjects frequently showcased this telltale lighting pattern. In our latest original infographic, we will be exploring what Rembrandt lightning is and how you can utilize it in your next portrait shoot. ...
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Sony vs Sigma Comparison: Battle of the 85mm F1.4 Lenses

The Sigma 85mm f1.4 DG DN Art competes directly with Sony’s well-received 85mm f1.4 G Master. Both lenses share an identical focal length and maximum constant aperture. There are other similarities, too: both feature an 11-bladed circular aperture, weather sealing, a customizable focus hold button, a de-clickable aperture ring, and a dedicated focus mode switch. The Sigma also includes an aperture ring lock that the Sony lacks. Sigma’s managed to deliver the 85mm f1.4 DG DN Art at a fraction of the G Master’s cost too. Did Sigma have to cut any corners to achieve the cost savings? Let’s compare these two portrait lenses head to head and find out....
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One Big Problem. Sigma 85mm F1.4 DG DN Art Review

Portrait shooters are in for a treat with the Sigma 85mm f1.4 DG DN Art. It’s the spiritual successor to Sigma’s much-loved but massive 85mm f1.4 DG HSM Art. The HSM lens was originally designed for DSLRs. Sigma would eventually release it for E and L mounts as well. However, their performance on mirrorless cameras left much to be desired. The new Sigma 85mm f1.4 DG DN Art aims to address both the size and performance issues that plagued mirrorless versions of its HSM predecessor. It also competes directly against Sony’s excellent 85mm f1.4 G Master. The 85mm f1.4 DG DN Art and the G Master share numerous similarities: both have 11 rounded aperture blades, an aperture range from f1.4-f16, a minimum autofocusing distance of 2.79 feet, and a filter diameter of φ7 7mm. The 85mm f1.4 DG DN Art is also the lightest of the three. We reviewed the E Mount version of the Sigma 85mm f1.4 DG DN Art, but it is available for L Mount as well....
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Juggling a Bunch of Filters? The Haida M10 Filter Pouch Has You Covered

Neutral density filters and circular polarizers are essential tools for many landscape photographers. They control the amount of light that their camera sensors are exposed to and help reduce glare respectively. Outdoor lighting conditions can be unpredictable, however. They can vary greatly depending on the time of day and weather conditions. Consequently, you’ll often find landscape photographers carrying numerous filters of varying strengths to compensate. Let’s not forget the filter holder and adapter rings too. That’s a lot of moving parts to toss into your camera bag. If you’re one of these photographers, then the Haida M10 Filter Pouch may be just what you need (especially if you’re using Haida’s M10 Filter Holder System)....
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A Constant Light That’s Built Like A Tank: The LitraPro LED Light Review

Beginner photographers are often intimated by stroboscopic flash. As a result, those just getting their feet wet with photographic lighting often look to constant lighting as an alternative. Consequently, we’ve seen plenty of LED constant lighting options come to market in recent years. Their overall quality has improved as well. The LitraPro is one such example. It combines a waterproof aluminum housing with a maximum light output of 1,200 lumens and the ability to use a variety of light modifiers. That all sounds great on paper, but is the LitraPro up to the task under real world conditions? Find out in our full review....
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Why Your Phone Is One of the Best Tools for Street Photography

Street photography is one of the most popular genres of photography today. It’s also one of the most accessible since most of us have a camera on our smartphones. Decisive moments are happening all around us. What better way to capture them than with the camera already in our pockets? Join us as we discuss the benefits of shooting street photography with our phones in our latest original infographic....
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Why New Film Photographers Need to Give 120 Film a Try

While much of the photo industry is dominated by digital, there’s never been more interest in analog photography. The production of popular film stocks has been steadily increasing. New film emulsions are also regularly introduced. Despite the 35mm format being more common, many film photographers are turning to medium format cameras and shooting with 120 film. If you’re new to the world of film photography, our latest original infographic will tell you everything you need to know about 120 film....
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Why Prime Lenses Make You a Better Photographer

Primes vs. zooms: it’s a debate almost as old as photography itself. Many photographers prefer prime lenses for their superior optics. Others like zooms because of their versatility. Whether one is better than the other is highly subjective. What sets prime lenses apart, though, is their ability to make us better photographers. Our latest original infographic explores this in detail....
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Photographers Will Love Using the OneMo Backpack on Their Next Hike

As photographers, we tend to amass a ton of camera gear over time. While most of us would love to be able to bring all of our equipment with us when traveling, the truth is we rarely need everything in our arsenals. Obviously, it’s always a challenge to have to decide between what gear to bring and what to leave home. The decision becomes even harder if you happen to be going on a day-long hike. Not only do you have to decide what to pack, but you’ve got to carry all of it on your back as well. Fortunately, the OneMo Backpack 25L from PGYTECH is a comfortable, modular, and expandable solution that is perfect for adventurous photographers preparing for such a trip. While it can’t tell you precisely what you will need for your hike, the OneMo Backpack can undoubtedly help you carry it all....
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These Portrait Posing Ideas Will Take Your Portraiture to the Next Level

Figuring out how to pose your subject’s head and hands are essential skills that every portrait photographer should have. This is an especially important skill to master if you primarily photograph laypeople with little to no modeling experience. If the world of portrait photography is new to you, this may seem like a daunting challenge. If you’ve ever found yourself to be at a loss with how to pose your subject’s head and hands during a shoot, this handy portrait posing guide is for you. Created by the folks over at Digital Camera World, this guide features some practical head and hand posing options that can be lifesavers during a shoot if you’re drawing a blank. They are especially useful for close-ups. Let’s check it out:...
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Which Film Format Is the Right One for You?

Although digital dominates much of the photography market today, analog photography continues to be alive and well. In fact, interest in film photography has been steadily increasing in recent years. So much so that film manufacturers are actively developing and releasing new film emulsions to satisfy the growing demand. For the uninitiated, however, the various film formats available on the market may have you scratching your head in confusion. If you’re just getting started with film photography, our latest original infographic covers some of the most common film formats you can find on the market today. Be sure to familiarize yourself with the various film formats outlined below if you’re planning to start shooting film....
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These Helpful Tips Will Maximize Your Camera’s Eye AF Performance

When it comes to autofocus technologies, Eye AF undoubtedly ranks quite high up on the list of recent groundbreaking developments. It’s a remarkable technology that is particularly useful for portrait photography. Thanks to its ability to track and nail focus on the eyes consistently, photographing humans (and certain animals) have become much less of a challenge when using a camera sporting Eye autofocus. Since Eye AF was first introduced, the technology’s seen significant performance improvements and adoption across much of the photo industry. Eye AF is so accurate today that many have retired the “Focus and Recompose” method as a result. Just about every new mirrorless camera announced will have some form of Eye AF tech built-in. Despite how sophisticated and mature Eye AF systems have become, they’re still quite a bit away from being 100% accurate. Whether that day will ever come remains to be seen. For now, however, there are things you can do to help ensure that the Eye AF system in your camera can perform optimally....
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These Settings Are the Key to Better Black and White Photos In-Camera

When you look at some of the most iconic photos throughout modern history, many of them will likely be in black and white. That’s not to say that color images are any less impactful. Quite the contrary, in fact. However, there’s a timeless quality to many black and white images. They can also distill a scene down to its very core. While you can certainly convert your images to black and white during post-processing, they are actually quite easy to create directly within your camera. Just about every modern digital camera can shoot in black and white. Why spend the extra time to covert your images in post when you can achieve the results you want in-camera? If you’re a fan of black and white photos, be sure to give these settings a try on your own camera....
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Freeze Fast Moving Subjects Like a Pro Using These Photography Tips

Sports and wildlife photography often involves photographing fast-moving subjects. The ability to freeze fast-moving subjects like birds and race cars into your frame is paramount. This can be challenging for even seasoned professional that specializes in sports and wildlife photography. For those new to the craft, this ability to freeze high-speed subjects (and essentially stop time) can feel like a downright Sisyphean task. Don’t give up hope just yet, though. The following infographic from Digital Camera World provides some vital insight into everything that you’ll need to know to freeze fast-moving subjects....
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Understanding the Science That Makes Photography Possible

As the old adage goes, “a picture is worth a thousand words.” To say that photography has been one of the most influential forms of communication in the history of humanity is an understatement. Today, photography is one of the most prevalent art forms found around the world. Throughout modern history, it’s played an important role in our ability to communicate and connect with one another as a species. Photography is arguably one of the most effective means with which to convey ideas. It has the ability to distill lots of information into just a single frame. A single image can also transport us to far-flung corners around the globe. More images are created today than ever before. Despite the transition from analog to digital, however, the principles that make photography possible remain fundamentally unchanged. If you’re not familiar with the science of photography, this infographic by the Huffington Post has you covered....
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A Perfect Union of Form and Function: 3 Legged Thing Bucky Tripod

For photographers that shoot landscapes or long exposures regularly, a reliable tripod is an essential tool in their arsenal besides their camera setup. For most photographers, however, the only thing they care about is that a tripod is stable and functions without fail. You set it up in front of you, mount your camera onto the ball head, and you start photographing. A tripod is a tripod is a tripod, right? What else is there to be said? With the just-announced 3 Legged Thing Bucky tripod, the British photography accessory maker is trying to elevate a tripod beyond being a mere utilitarian device while expanding its functionality. To top it off, they want it to look great doing it too. We had the opportunity to test drive the 3 Legged Thing Bucky Tripod along with the new AirHed Vu ball head prior to their release today. Both the tripod and ball head are part of 3 Legged Thing’s new Legend line of tripods and accessories. While the Bucky tripod and the AirHed Vu ball head certainly make for a handsome pairing, do the functions follow the form? Let’s find out....
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How Audrey Woulard Captured the Girl in the Woods in Urban Chicago

Photographing on location can present a variety of unique challenges for photographers just starting out. For world-renowned photographer and Nikon Ambassador Audrey Woulard, however, that’s just another day at the office. Perhaps best known for her portraits of young people, Audrey’s love for the art of photography began with the birth of her children. This led to her leaving the corporate world behind and embarking on a career in portrait photography. In addition to her portrait work, Audrey also teaches photographic techniques around the world via in-person workshops and her online educational platform. We recently spoke with Audrey about her workflow and how she created her Girl in the Woods portrait of one of her clients....
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Which Look Is Right for You? Fujifilm Film Simulations Compared

Fujifilm has long been celebrated as the manufacturer of some of the world’s most-used film emulsions. Fujifilm wisely brought this analog legacy with them when they made the transition to digital. Many of these much-loved film emulsions are available in digital form as film simulations across Fujifilm’s X-series and GFX-series cameras. In fact, some would argue that these film simulations are the special sauce that makes Fujifilm cameras so endearing. These film simulations each possess unique characteristics and were created to emulate the look of the Fujifilm emulsions with which they share their name. Fujifilm X-series and GFX-series cameras give you the ability to apply these film simulations to your images in-camera. You can also “re-process” your images in-camera using different film simulations. Better yet, you can even see the effects of each film simulation in real-time through the EVF or the rear LCD while photographing. Our latest original infographic explores the various Fujifilm Film Simulations and how they compare to one another....
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The Most Modular Camera Bag Yet? The OneMo Backpack 25L Review

When it comes to camera backpacks, there is no shortage of options available on the market. The OneMo Backpack 25L from PGYTECH, a relatively new Chinese photography accessory maker, is the latest option to enter this crowded marketplace. It first began as a Kickstarter campaign and has since been fully funded. The OneMo Camera Backpack was designed with modularity and expandability in mind. On paper, the OneMo Backpack seemingly offers a lot of the features that modern photographers require in a camera backpack: weather resistance, customizability, the ability to hold tons of camera gear, etc. The proof, as they say, is in the pudding, and we’ve been testing the OneMo Backpack to see if it lives up to PGYTECH’s claims....
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Do You Really Need a Fast Aperture Lens, or Do You Just Want One?

When it comes to choosing lenses for our cameras, fast aperture lenses are often lusted over by many photographers. Most fast aperture lenses tend to be the most premium lenses available from camera and lens manufacturers. They can let in a ton of light, render shallow depth of field, and generally produce some of the best image quality around. Although there is certainly a lot to love about fast aperture lenses, their premium statuses often come with equally premium price tags. Do you actually need a fast aperture lens for your photography, or is your GAS (Gear Acquisition Syndrome) acting up? If you’re faced with this dilemma, let our latest original infographic help you decide if a fast aperture lens is right for you....
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Why It’s Important to Learn How to Read Your Camera’s Light Meter

Light meters are designed to measure the amount of light available in a scene. In photography, they are used to determine the appropriate aperture and shutter speed values required to properly expose an image. Back in the film days, not many cameras came with a light meter built-in. Photographers had to rely on external handheld light meters to accurately determine the proper exposure. As time went on, camera manufacturers began incorporating light meters into their camera bodies. This made it much easier for photographers to expose their images properly. Fast forward to today, just about every commercially available digital camera has a light meter built-in. They play an essential role in your camera’s ability to create properly exposed images. There will be times when you may want to intentionally ignore what your light meter is telling you for creative or other reasons. To do that, however, requires that you understand what your camera’s light meter is telling you. Let’s dive into it....
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Be Sure to Read This Before Buying a Vintage Point and Shoot Camera

Vintage point and shoot cameras are be some of the funnest to shoot with. They are great entry points for photographers interested in shooting film but find more traditional vintage cameras to be intimidating. As their name suggests, simply point your camera at your subject and shoot away. You won’t have to worry about messing around with camera settings. If you’re looking to purchase a vintage point and shoot camera of your very own, here are all the things that you should be mindful of....
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These Softbox Tips Will Take Your Photography Lighting to the Next Level

Softboxes are one of the most popular light modifiers used by photographers. They are also very versatile and can be found in a variety of different form factors and sizes. A softbox gives you a great deal of control over your lighting regardless if you’re photographing in a studio or outdoors. Since our previous infographic on how to use a softbox for portrait photography proofed to be quite popular, we’re bringing you more softbox tips today....
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You’ll Want to Read This If You’re Planning on Buying a Vintage Camera

While we cover the latest and greatest cameras here on The Phoblographer, some of our favorites actually happen to be vintage cameras. Although vintage cameras lack most of the advancements we enjoy in today’s cameras, they offer a completely different shooting experience. They are products from a bygone era, more akin to mechanical tools rather than the full-fledged computers that cameras are today. The shooting experience is often much more tactile and evoke a sense of nostalgia. If you’re planning on purchasing a vintage camera of your very own, here are all the things that you should be on the look out for....
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Capture One’s Beyond Collection Gives Your Images a Film Inspired Look

Capture One is introducing two new style packs today: Beyond B&W and Beyond Film. These style packs take inspiration from timeless black and white images and classic film emulsions respectively. While created with classic film stocks and imagery in mind, the Beyond Collection aren’t designed to emulate the look of film emulsions like styles from RNI or Mastin Labs do. Both new style packs were created to provide a quick and repeatable workflow for photographers and photo editors. They are available separately for US $49 / €59 / £49 or together as the Beyond Collection bundle for US $79 / €89 / £79. Like other style packs from Capture One, the Beyond Collection styles packs installs easily with a simple double click and work right out of the box. We got a chance to test-drive these new styles prior to their public release. Head on after the jump to check out the results....
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Why Prime Lenses Are Better Than Zooms: All the World in a Single Frame

When it comes to choosing the right lenses for our cameras, some photographers gravitate towards zooms while others prefer primes. Those that prefer zooms love them for their convenience factor. Despite this fact, many photographers are happy to trade convenience away and opt to shoot with prime lenses instead. What exactly makes prime lenses superior to zoom lenses? Let us show you with our latest original infographic....
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This Photographer’s Custom Made Tilt Shift Lenses Look Like Sci-Fi Props

Tilt-shift photography is popular genre of photography that involves manipulating depth of field and perspectives. Real world objects often take on a toy like appearance in resulting tilt-shift images as a result. Specially designed tilt-shift lenses or adapters are required to achieve this effect practically in-camera. This can be both costly and challenging, resulting in some photographers opting to simulate the effect during post-production using programs like Photoshop instead. The same principle can be applied in reverse to magnify the depth of field, but there are no commercially available lenses and adapters that cater to this kind of tilt-shifting. This had led photographer Jin Kim to tackle the challenge with a DIY approach. We first learned about Jin’s custom made tilt shift lenses when his son shared a photo of one of them onto Reddit. What we saw looked more like a set piece from a science fiction movie rather than a lens that we’d normally mount onto our cameras. Our attention was piqued and we had to learn more. Luckily, Jin Kim was kind enough to share the stories behind his lenses with us. For the sake of clarity, please note that we have done our best efforts to transcribe this interview....
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Why Learning How to Read a Histogram Can Improve Your Photography

If you’ve spent any time playing around with the display on your digital camera’s rear screen, you’ve most likely seen what resembles a (sometimes multicolored) line graph. You’ll likely have seen something similar when editing your images in Capture One or Lightroom as well. This graph is called a histogram. Although it may look like something you had to learn in statistics class, histograms are actually very useful for photographers. While most human eyes can detect a dynamic range of roughly 20 stops, the most advanced cameras commercially available today top out at around 15. This is where the histogram comes in handy. It provides a readout of where your highlights, mid-tones, shadows, and the various color channels fall in relation to your camera’s exposure settings. If you’ve ever wondered why an image looks fine on the back of your camera but looks over- or underexposed when you import them into your raw editor, this infographic is for you. Understanding how to read a histogram will ensure that that your images are properly exposed, and that you’re recording the maximum amount of available light information into your raw files....
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These Multiple Exposure Tips Will Help You Expand Your Creativity

As photographers, it’s important to always explore new and different techniques in order to keep our creative muscles active. A popular way to exercise our creativity is by utilizing alternative photography techniques. Shooting multiple exposures is one such example. With origins dating back to the film photography days, multiple exposure techniques are still highly popular to this day. The images created through multiple exposure photography tend to take on a surreal, ethereal, or conceptual nature. One thing that they definitely won’t be is boring. If you’re looking for creative photography projects to help sharpen your imagination, consider giving multiple exposures a try!...
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No More Screwing Around: Haida M10 Insert Variable ND Filter Review

When it comes to neutral density filters, variable NDs are favored by many photographers for their versatility. Instead of carrying a bunch of individual ND filters of different strengths, VNDs cover a set ND range that can be adjusted on the fly. The way that traditional variable NDs are designed, however (where two rotating rings are essentially conjoined), can sometimes make them a pain to remove. A filter wrench is often required. Haida is looking to change the way photographers use variable NDs. By leveraging their M10 Filter Holder System, photographers no longer have to screw and unscrew filters, VNDs included. The Haida M10 Insert Variable ND Filter works in concert with the company’s own M10 Drop-In Neutral Density and Circular Polarizing Filters. When combined, the M10 Insert VND acts as a multiplier for the M10 Drop-In ND/CPLs’ ND rating. Depending on the amount of light reduction needed, simply swap out the corresponding Drop-In ND/CPL rather than unscrewing a VND and screwing on a stronger one in its place. Sounds great in theory, but how well does the Haida M10 Insert Variable ND Filter work in the real world?...
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The Century21 of Camera Straps: Woolnut Leather Camera Strap Review

When it comes to camera straps, some photographers treat them as a style statement, while others are perfectly content using the branded one that came bundled with your camera. Some photographers tend to prefer lower profile alternatives like wrist straps or carrying clips. Having used the Woolnut Leather Camera Strap for the better part of the last few months carrying a number of different cameras and lenses around, it certainly falls under the style statement category. Made from a combination of full-grain vegetable-tanned Scandinavian leather, natural German wool felt, and metal accents, the Woolnut Leather Camera Strap is most definitely an upgrade over bundled branded camera straps which are often uncomfortable. The middle portion of the strap, which tends to be the area that comes in contact with your body most often, is nicely padded. Even when carrying heavier cameras and lenses, this padding help to keep the Woolnut Leather Camera Strap fairly comfortable....
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Don’t Trade in Your Sony A7III Just Yet, the Nikon Z5 Looks Pretty Gimped

Today, Nikon is officially announcing the Nikon Z5. Part of the company’s Z-mount Full Frame mirrorless camera line, the Nikon Z5 is the company’s take on the “basic camera.” With that said, it’s competing in some ways with the Sony A7 III. Between its attractive $2,000 pricepoint and its advanced feature set, the A7 III was very well regarded and sold like hotcakes. Nikon is going after the same crown with the Nikon Z5. ...
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Master Shooting at Night with Superzoom Lenses with These Helpful Tips

Superzoom lenses are prized for their extra-long focal range coverage. Instead of having to swap lenses constantly, shooting with superzooms allows you to cover a lot of ground. Convenient as they may be, they come with some unique challenges, particularly when used at night or under other low light scenarios. Our latest original infographic covers some useful tips that you’ll want to keep in mind when shooting with superzooms at night....
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Make Sure You Read This Before Taking Your Camera Into the Rain

Years ago, weather resistant cameras and lenses were few and far between and photographing in the rain pretty much meant certain death for your equipment. With camera manufacturers creating more and more weather resistant cameras these days, however, it’s never been easier to shoot during inclement weather. It’s important to remember that weather resistant does not equal weatherproof. Our latest original infographic highlights some important things to keep in mind the next time you’re planning on shooting in inclement weather....
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Get Low. Lower. Even Lower. The Gitzo Mini Traveler Tripod Review

Tripods are a particularly useful tool when taking long-exposure photographs or working with extreme angles, and Gitzo’s Mini Traveler is no exception. Its compact design is its biggest selling point. The lighter and smaller a piece of gear is, the more likely that you will bring it with you as it’s less likely to weigh you down. Another thing to consider is that many public places now require permits in order to use a tripod. Some locations have even banned them outright. The diminutive form factor of the Gitzo Mini Traveler tripod helps you remain inconspicuous while allowing you to capture the image you had envisioned. We’ve been testing one out for the last few months, find out how it fared in real-world use after the jump....
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Give Your Images Some Flare With The Lensbaby OMNI Flare Expansion

The folks over at Lensbaby are releasing yet another expansion pack to their awesome OMNI Creative Filter System today. The Flare Expansion Pack is the third expansion that Lensbaby has released for its unique OMNI Creative Filter System so far. Consisting of four brand new glass Effect Wands, the Flare Expansion Pack is designed to give photographers the ability to easily introduce unique flare effects to their images in-camera. We got to spend some time with the Flare Expansion Pack prior to the public release. Head on after the jump for details on the OMNI Flare Expansion Pack along with a sample gallery of images we created using the new Flare Effect Wands....
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Tony Gale Finds Creative Outlet With Social Distancing Self Portraits

The novel coronavirus pandemic has been a huge blow to the photography industry. With most photographers being homebound and in socially distanced self-isolation, the normally simple act of creating has evolved into a new and unique challenge. This presented a unique opportunity for self-discovery for portrait photographer Tony Gale....
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Stylish and Compact: The Gorgeous Billingham Hadley Small Pro

Photographers tend to disagree about a lot of things. This is especially true when it comes to camera bags. The perfect camera bag simply doesn’t exist. A camera bag that may suit the needs of one photographer may be woefully inadequate for others. If you’re the type of photographer that likes to keep a low profile and travel with a compact kit, however, the Billingham Hadley Small Pro comes pretty darn close to perfection. At the time of writing, the COVID-19 pandemic is sweeping across the world. For photographers that need to get around, the ability to travel light has become more critical than ever. For the last couple of months, I’ve been using the Billingham Hadley Small Pro whenever I needed to test photo gear out in the wild (with a mask on while maintaining social distancing, of course). It’s allowed me to carry just enough gear I needed while maintaining a small footprint. The fact that the Grey Canvas & Black Leather version of the Hadley Small Pro looks absolutely gorgeous is undoubtedly a bonus. You can’t really go wrong with the other colorways available, though....
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How and Where to Look for Photography Inspiration Beyond Instagram

“To gain new perspectives, you have to be willing to change your surroundings.” Back when I was working in higher education, that’s what I used to tell my students whenever they were confronted with seemingly insurmountable problems. It’s helped them reframe the problems and to arrive at solutions on their own. This principle continues to hold true as I transitioned into a career in photography. Whenever I was faced with a creative rut, looking towards new sources of inspiration was often the spark I needed. Time and time again, it’s helped me see the world through a different lens (pun intended) and to approach my photography with fresh creative impulses. The next time you find yourself stuck in a creative rut, consider these alternative sources of inspiration....
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These Tips Will Help You Master Shooting Wide-angle Portraits at 24mm

Once upon a time, it would have been inconceivable to photograph portraits using something as wide as a 24mm lens. You may as well have bought a one-way express ticket to Distortion City. Thanks to advancements in modern optics design, however, that is a thing of the past. Portrait photography with 24mm wide-angle lenses is totally feasible nowadays. As long as you understand how best to utilize the focal length, it can lead to some truly creative possibilities. In our latest original infographic, we will be going over some important guidelines to keep in mind when creating portraits using 24mm wide-angle lenses....
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Put a Ring on It: A Quick Intro to Ring Flash Photography

When it comes to photographic lighting, ring light flashes rank pretty high up on the list of contentious topics between photographers. The mere mention of them can be enough to trigger some strobists to the point that they end up breaking into tirades. Years ago, ring lights were en vogue amongst beauty, fashion, and editorial photographers but fell out of favor as more directional lighting became de rigueur. Thanks to their widespread use by beauty bloggers, YouTubers, and reality television confessionals (many are lit using ring lights), ring lights are having a bit of a renaissance at the moment. They’ve become so ubiquitous that even most non-photographers will recognize the telltale halo-like catchlights they produce. Regardless of your opinion on ring lights, it’s important to remember that all light behaves identically because they obey the same laws of physics. As long as you’re utilizing them properly, ring lights can actually be very useful for a variety of different genres of photography. Let’s dive deeper....
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Op Ed: There Is No Good, Safe Social Media Community for Photography

When it comes to social media communities for photographers, Instagram is the reigning, undisputed champion today. Prior to Instagram’s dominance, the photo-centric social media landscape was a very different place. The photography social media space was very much like the Wild West back then. Platforms like 500px, Flickr, Google+, and Tumblr were all gunslingers trying to vie for dominance. Some of these platforms had their 15 minutes in the spotlight, managing to foster a community amongst their loyal userbases. Most of them, however, are barely able to hold onto their formal glory today. We’ve also seen contenders like Daisie, Ello, and Vero pop up throughout the years as well. While they have all been touted to be the next big thing, none of them really gained the traction needed to dethrone the 800-pound gorilla that is Instagram. Despite the growing dissatisfaction with Instagram amongst many photographers, we’re doomed to suffer its reign until a viable alternative presents itself. Where did all these competitors go wrong?...
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Make Your Own Golden Hour By Mastering This One Setting

Many photographers love shooting during golden hour because the ambient light imparts a soft, gorgeous warmth onto our subject matter. Those fleeting moments during golden hour often produce some of the most stunning images regardless if you’re photographing landscapes or portraits. Aside from the short window of opportunity, we’re also very much at Mother Nature’s mercy when photographing during golden hour. Weather conditions, cloud coverage, time of year, and a slew of other factors determine whether the ambient light is actually golden during its eponymous hour. All hope is not lost, however, even if Mother Nature happens to be a particularly cruel mistress while you’re out photographing. By mastering your camera’s white balance settings, you will gain the ability to control how intense golden hour’s effects will appear in your image. You can even simulate the appearance of golden hour if Mother Nature is giving you the cold shoulder. Let’s dive right in....
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An Imperfect MacBook Pro Alternative: Asus ProArt StudioBook 15 Review

For a long time, MacBook Pros were the go-to option for photographers and creatives alike in need of a mobile computing solution. That’s no longer the case with the recent influx of competitively priced and highly capable Windows mobile workstations. The Asus ProArt StudioBook 15 is one such example, packing a lot of firepower under the hood at a reasonable asking price. For US $1,999, you’re getting an Intel i7-9750H Hexa-core processor, an Nvidia GeForce RTX 2060 discrete GPU, 32 GB of RAM, and 1 TB of solid-state storage. To top it all off, it’s got a stunning Pantone validated 4K display that covers 100% of the AdobeRGB color space as well. The spec sheet certainly looks impressive, but how well does it perform in the real world? Find out in our Asus ProArt StudioBook 15 full review....
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These Tips Will Level Up Your Backlit Portrait Photography Game

Backlighting your subjects is a popular technique used in portrait photography. It’s especially popular amongst portrait photographers that prefer to work with natural light. When properly executed, backlit portraits take on a natural and aesthetically pleasing quality. If you’re always wanted to give this style a try but weren’t quite sure how to pull it off, we’ve got you covered!...
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Showdown of the Portrait Photography Focal Lengths: 85mm vs 135mm

When it comes to portrait photography, many photographers will naturally reach for an 85mm or a 135mm prime lens. Both lenses are equally capable of delivering stunning results in the hands of a skilled portrait photographer. However, there are fundamental differences between the two focal lengths that give each unique advantages. Understanding them will allow you to pick the most appropriate option at your next portrait session....
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These Are The Best Focal Lengths For Capturing Candid Moments

Candid moments are happening all around us, and photography affords us the unique ability to distill and immortalize them into a single frame. Situational awareness is key. Most candid moments tend to reveal themselves as long as you’re paying attention to your surroundings. While there are no hard and fast rules that you must adhere to when it comes to capturing these “Kodak Moments,” some focal lengths certainly work better than others. Be sure to give these different focal lengths a go the next time you’re planning on capturing candid moments....
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