An Easy Way to Create Moody Shadows and Hard Light With a Softbox

If you want to know how to create hard light, but still want some control over your light source, this video is for you.

You’re probably wondering why anyone would want to create hard light with a softbox. Isn’t the point of a softbox to create gorgeous, flattering light with soft shadows? Well, the answer is yes to that, but as we all know, many items have multiple uses, and it turns out that a softbox can be a great tool for creating hard shadows. After the break, we have a video for you that demonstrates how you can create moody shadows with a small softbox. Continue reading…

Every Photographer Should Learn How Photograph Darker Skin Tones

Darker skin tones can still use some extra attention from photographers and even industry professionals like make-up artists and stylists.

Portrait and fashion photography should be an all-encompassing craft, especially at this time and age when we’re supposedly more open-minded and accepting of other cultures and perspectives. This means that photographers today should be able to use their expertise to create photos of darker skinned models and individuals in a way that highlights their natural beauty. A video by Buzzfeed reinforces this idea with a photoshoot done with dark-skinned models, encouraging photographers and even industry professionals like make-up artists and stylists to do the same.

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How to Balance Your Day Job, Family and Your Photography Hobby

Finding balance is generally one of the most difficult things for most amateur and enthusiast photographers to do. 

Life demands so much of you: and the most exhausting thing at times is finding balance between it all. My grandfather used to say to me “You go to school, and you come home, you sleep, then go to work, come home and sleep. And life is very repetitive.” He was right to a point, but I think that one of the best things that folks should do is find a way to keep a balance. It’s good for mental health, but it also means that you’re giving priority to the things that are very important to you.

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Three Tips for Beginners on Using a Softbox for Photography

Using a softbox for photography really isn’t difficult. Here’s how a total noob can do it.

When photographers first start using lighting, they often work with softboxes. I’m not exactly sure why; umbrellas and octabanks are superior in every way. But softboxes are still the light modifiers that everyone just knows and starts with. They’re the old reliable. But when photographers start out with lighting, they often don’t know the first thing about how to shape it. So here’s what you need to keep in mind with a softbox (in a bite sized package.)

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Portrait Photography Tip: More Ideas on Posing Non-Models

Need more ideas for posing non-models for your portrait photography practice? These quick and simple tips should get you shooting stunning portraits in no time.

Whether you’re a professional portrait photographer or someone still learning the ropes, you’ll definitely be working with non-models. So if you still need some help on how to pose them for your next project, we have a really useful video tutorial that should provide lots of ideas. Portrait photographers Anita Sadowska and Irene Rudnyk recently teamed up for a quick but really helpful video demonstrating poses for non-models. With Sadowska behind the camera and Rudnyk following her directions, we see a good variety of posing techniques that will make everyone look really great in portraits.

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Travel Photography Tip: Comparing 35mm vs 50mm Lenses

If you’re just getting started with travel photography and have been browsing around for some tips on the best lenses to use, this 35mm vs 50mm comparison should help.

Are you an aspiring travel photographer who can’t decide between 35mm and 50mm lenses as the better choice for the job? In case you’re still looking for tips and resources, Australian fashion and portrait photographer Julia Trotti comes to the rescue with a quick comparison video for both focal lengths during her recent trip to Gdansk in Poland. Since Trotti specializes in portraits, it’s only proper for her to begin the comparison with a bunch of portrait shots. She works mostly with prime lenses given her genre of choice, hence the focus on 35mm and 50mm prime lenses for this comparison. She also shot with the Full Frame Canon 5D Mk IV, so keep in mind that you’ll get different results if you shoot with a camera with crop frame sensor. Since this is about travel photography, she made sure to give examples for portraits we’d typically shoot during a trip: mostly half body or full body shots with careful attention to  include the landmarks behind or around the subject. Apart from portraits in both half body, full body, and close up, Trotti also provided some examples for other popular subjects in travel photography: food and landscapes.

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The Beginner’s Guide on How to Do Your Own Firefly Lamp Portrait Photography

That firefly lamp portrait photography trend is pretty simple to do on the cheap!

The trend that has taken over Instagram and lots of cinema is firefly lamp portrait photography. Lots of folks don’t know how to do it themselves or simply just associate it with other photographers. But the truth is that it doesn’t need to be that way. You can put your own twist and spin on it using Christmas lights, which is very affordable and gives you a ton of options. The bottom line: it’s all about being in touch with your own feelings.

Trust us, this isn’t difficult; let’s take a look!

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Portrait Photography: Connect with Your Clients Easier with These 3 Tips

portrait photography

When it comes to portrait photography the way you communicate with your client is far more important than the gear you’re using.

We’ve all been there at some point in our careers: we have a great model, or an awesome client, but we just don’t know how to effectively communicate or connect with the person standing in front of the camera. A lack of communication skills can kill a shoot quickly, so being able to build connections with those you work with is far more important than the gear you use. The three tips that are shared in a new video after the break will help get you set up for success and will hopefully help you figure out what to do to connect with your clients. Continue reading…

The Phoblographer Answers: What Is the White Part of an Instant Film Photo?

Ever wonder why your Polaroid and Instant Film photos have that border?

It’s always really nice to see your Instant Film Photo and the natural white border it has, but did you know there’s a scientific reason for this border? Yes, while the beautiful border on your Polaroid or Instant film photo is cool, there’s an important reason why it’s there.

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How to Master Backlighting for Natural Light Portrait Photography

Want the dreamy look that remains popular in portrait photography today? You might want to learn how to master backlighting when shooting in natural light.

If you hold a preference for natural light portrait photography, you might find backlighting as one the effective techniques to use for creating dreamy images. It’s not as simple as just shooting outdoors with the sun behind your subject, but a technique with the goal of a moody yet balanced look for portraits. In this quick video tutorial, Sydney-based fashion photographer Julia Trotti show us how it’s done and we can master it. Backlighting is just one of the techniques at your creative arsenal once you choose to do portrait photography in natural lighting. It gives your photos that dreamy and flattering look that many photographers are going for fashion editorials, wedding photography, and even themed portraits. With Trotti’s tips, you can start experimenting with this technique in no time.

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How to Light Your Macro Photos and Get Sharper Images

Macro photography doesn’t need to be shot at ISO 32000; but you can do it with just a little bit of help from a flash.

When you think about macro images, we often imagine those really, really detailed close up photos. As long as there is good lighting, it’s simple to do with focus stacking or even just stopping the lens down with enough light in the scene. Many photographers on their spare time adore the meditative act of fixating on an object and photographing it to get every single detail of the subject. These objects are typically small toys, food, insects, plants, etc. It’s fun and requires the photographer to make a number of very repetitive but careful movements. But of course, every bit of lighting is always useful and we don’t always have good lighting naturally around. But don’t worry: using a flash in this situation is pretty much brainless.

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Here’s a Cheap Way to Make Big Wall Art Prints of Your Photos

What if we tell you there’s a way to make big art prints of your favorite photos without breaking the bank? Will you still put off printing your best snaps?

If you’re yet to get your best photos printed, it’s never too late to get started. We can’t stress enough how important and rewarding it is to see your work in print. A great quality print would not only be the final step in creating great work, but will elevate it into a form that everyone can readily look at and admire. But, if you’re not ready to splurge on fine art prints, Alastair Bird shows us a cheap and handmade way to go big.

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Quick Tips on Shooting Better Headshots with an APS-C Sensor Camera

Yes, it’s very possible to get great headshots with an APS-C sensor camera.

There is a myth that an APS-C sensor camera cannot take great portraits because there isn’t that much bokeh. When it comes to headshots, that’s positively not true. APS-C sensors are highly capable and in fact have a few advantages over medium format and full frame sensors. Photographers using Sony and Fujifilm mirrorless cameras or Canon and Nikon APS-C cameras will be able to take great headshots of people no matter what. It isn’t really the camera that matters when you’re considering the technicalities.

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How to Shoot Natural Light Portraits in Flower Fields (And Posing People!)

The ultimate dream of mine as a photographer is to shoot in beautiful fields of vast picturesque flower fields.

Every spring and summer my clients know where to find me and my camera. Finding the perfect location for a portrait shoot is always one of the greatest challenges in photography. And once you think you have found the perfect location for your photoshoot, coming up with the creative idea for how to capture both the subject beautifully and the location cohesively can be equally as difficult to execute. The perfect combination of a beautiful location, stunning natural light and eager subject is all a photographer can dream of to create dramatic and ethereal images.

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Flash Photography Basics: Freezing Movement in Your Shots Using Flash

Just getting started with flash photography? Check out this simple experiment to find out how you can use flash to freeze movement in your photos.

One of the most useful flash photography tricks everyone should learn is how to capture motion using flash. It often comes in handy especially when you need to freeze movement in an indoor setting (like weddings, events, or parties). Adorama TV and Mark Wallace have put together a simple experiment that you can set up at home to help you learn about how moving objects appear differently in ambient light and when flash is used.

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How I Edit Photos in Capture One Pro and Affinity Photo

Take your architectural photos to the next level by using the two most powerful editing programs available – Capture One Pro (v12) and Affinity Photo.

In this tutorial I show you my simple architectural photography workflow while editing an image in Capture One Pro and then doing the finish work in Affinity Photo – no Photoshop needed! Knowing how to edit your raw photos is an important step to delivering great photos to your clients. Adobe Photoshop may be considered the industry standard and go-to software for many creatives, but I have always had a hate/love/hate relationship with Photoshop and Lightroom over the years.  It’s often buggy, sluggish (no matter how maxed out my computer is), and never gives me the absolute image quality I know my cameras are capable of – and that I demand.

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How to Mount Vintage Lenses to Modern Cameras Using Adapters

Looking for a guide on using vintage lenses on your modern camera? David Krooshof has you covered with his in-depth how-to.

Previously, we saw here an explanation about using vintage lenses on your new camera, including a video testing them for the bokeh. Let’s look into the world of adapters that are needed if you’d like to use retro glass. These adapters come in the form of rings with one end connecting to your specific camera, and the other accepting a certain lens.

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How to Shoot Portraits in Harsh Noon Sunlight (Make it Your Best Friend)

Whatever the reason, if noon is the only time you can shoot portraits, here are some tips to help you work with the harsh light.

Any photographer will tell you that noon is the worst time to shoot portraits because of the harsh light of the sun and the unflattering shadows it casts. A fact of life is that most people just don’t look good in lighting like this when out in the open. Even the backlighting method is very difficult to do at times under noon lighting. If you absolutely have no choice but to shoot in that light (like when you’re on assignment and on a tight schedule), these tips and tricks from boudoir photographer Michael Sasser should help you get some good photos. In fact, noon lighting can become a friend.

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How Close Should You Be to a Portrait Subject When Shooting With a 35mm Lens?

Modern day 35mm lenses are quite good; so good that they’re good enough for portraits.

Many photographers swear by their 35mm lenses and almost never want to shoot with anything else. The reason for this is because it so closely simulates what the human eye sees and so it’s easy for a photographer to go out there and shoot a scene just the way that they see it. That would be great, if 35mm lenses were absolutely perfect. While they’ve greatly improved, 35mm lenses are still not perfect and when used for portraiture still can’t replace or do what a proper telephoto focal length can. But with patience, you can figure out how to make the most of a 35mm lens for portraiture.

Here are some quick visual tips.

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Quick Tips for Beautiful Flower Photography in Early Spring

Flower photography season is afoot with the coming of spring, so here are some useful tips to get you prepared.

Spring season is the perfect time to get those macro lenses dusted off and ready to shoot — what else, but beautiful, dainty flowers! If you already have plans set and a picture-perfect location spot on, we’ve got just the video tutorial to help you with your flower photography. Professional wildlife photographer Paul Miguel has already started making rounds in his local woodland to photograph the dainty wood anemones, so it’s time we all get started with it as well. If you’re trying this out for the first time, with his tips below, you’ll surely pick up some tips and ideas for beautiful flower photography fitting for spring.

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Tutorial: A Practical Application of Rear Curtain Sync Flash Settings

If you’re fond of shooting the graceful movements of dance, you might want to experiment with shooting with flash in rear curtain sync mode using these settings.

Rear curtain sync mode is one of the creative techniques at your disposal when you work with flash. Basically, the flash fires off towards the end of an exposure, or just before the rear/second curtain closes. With this technique, you can produces some really cool-looking blur and light trails while your subject remains in focus. That makes it popular for experimenting with capturing movement using flash. In this quick tutorial, wedding and portrait photographer Jen Marino shares her go-to settings for shooting dance photos.

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