You’ll Learn Something New From This Street Photography Masterclass

Thorsten Overgaard’s Street Photography Masterclass will give beginners the most to chew on.

“You have to find a balance of taking photos; not too many, not too few,” says Thorsten Overgaard in his street photography masterclass. And honestly, this course is evidence of that. If you’re all about reality, then Thorsten Overgaard shoves a ton of it into his Street Photography Masterclass. Available as part of the current 5 Day Deal, you’ll get this course along with a ton of others. You can skip around to various parts. And best of all, you’re bound to learn something no matter what. As a 12-year photo veteran, I even picked something up.

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Here Are the Advantages a Messenger Bag Has for Photographers

Most photographers swear by their messenger bags.

How does the saying go? You can pry it from my cold, dead hands, right? Well, that’s how some photographers feel about their messenger bags. Messenger bags have a unique appeal to those who want to be more fashionable or old school. They’re very functional and have lots of uses. The wider ones can act as a platform for doing other things. They also can hold all the gear you really need. We’ve reviewed a ton of them over the past decade. So in this infographic, you’ll learn what we’ve come to know.

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The Reasons You Need a Backpack as Your Next Camera Bag

Getting and choosing the right camera bag is crucial for so many reasons.

Of any standing photo publication, we’ve done the most reviews of camera bags. If you’re looking for one, you come to us. So today, we’re presenting an infographic on choosing the right camera bag. This is specifically for choosing a backpack. I used to love messengers bags, and still think they’re superior to camera bags in some cases. But overwhelmingly, backpacks are the better choice. If I had a week, I wouldn’t have enough time to explain why. But I’m going to try in this blog post.

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Exposure Preview: The Worst Thing for Your Camera’s Autofocus?

We talked to a couple of photographers and tech reps, and it seems like Exposure Preview could be hurting your camera’s autofocus.

Most people shooting with mirrorless cameras shoot with the Exposure Preview on. I’ve never been a fan of it, and I’ve always turned it off. In my mind, you should just learn to read the damn light meter to begin with, and not rely on what the screen says. One could think this is an old school way of thinking, but there are lots of performance benefits. If you’re shooting with a strobe, for example, there’s a great reason to turn exposure preview off. You’re usually shooting at a low ISO setting and faster shutter speeds. Plus, the camera won’t render what the scene will look like with your strobe output anyway. And for years, folks have used exposure preview as a crutch. That isn’t a bad thing, it’s just how people evolved to use cameras. I still recommend that everyone learns to shoot film and learns the art of Sunny 16: it will make you a better photographer. But all this is the long way of my saying that exposure preview is also messing with your autofocus.

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How Many of You Know the Blue Cellophane Rangefinder Trick?

Blue cellophane comes standard as a protective cover on your rangefinder’s viewfinder, but the blue cellophane rangefinder trick can also help you!

I’ve known about this trick for many years and thought everyone else did too. But the truth is most people do not, especially those new to photography. If you shoot with a Leica, Voigtlander, Canon, Zeiss, Zorki, Yashica, or Olympus rangefinder, then you’re in luck! Besides doing a CLA (Clean Lube Adjustment), there are better ways to make your rangefinder more visible. Older rangefinders didn’t have bright patches, or the ones they had deteriorated over time. To make them appear even brighter, there is a little trick involving blue cellophane and the viewfinder, not the rangefinder. Let’s dive into the blue cellophane rangefinder trick!

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Getting the Best Results When Shooting with Natural Light at Home

Most of us are homebound at the moment due to the pandemic, but you can still create great images at home using these natural light photography tips.

One of the 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 how it helps to deliver consistent and repeatable results. However, artificial lighting can be intimating. The arrival of the COVID-19 pandemic has introduced new challenges as well. Even for photographers comfortable shooting with artificial light, not all of them own artificial lighting or have access to it while sheltering in place. The good news is that natural light is still available (provided that the weather cooperates). And as long as there’s light, we as photographers can create. Right now, the simple act of creating can be an important therapeutic exercise 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. 50mm lenses make for great additions to every photographer’s arsenal. This is especially true for those just starting 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 own? Head past the jump to see all you can achieve with the 50mm focal length.

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Buying a Medium Format Camera? This Is What You’re Diving Into

Those getting a Medium format camera will want to know precisely what they’re dealing with.

Photographers, as we know, are very used to what full-frame cameras can do. But they’re not so used to medium format because it’s not as common. A medium format camera is fundamentally a whole different ball game. For starters, you’re going up in pricing and quality. And a photographer will expect the absolute ultimate performance, but they also probably don’t know how to make the most of it. Medium format cameras traditionally were only used for weddings, documentary journalism, landscapes, and portraiture. In some ways today, that’s still the case, but it’s evolved.

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The Phoblographer’s Guide to Rembrandt Lighting

Named after the 17th-century Dutch master painter, Rembrandt lighting is a popular portrait lighting technique that can create very pleasing results.

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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Why Flash Duration Is the Photographer’s Secret Weapon!

Things changed so much for me when I learned about flash duration!

If there’s one thing that I adore about flash photography, it’s flash duration. This is a secret weapon so many new photographers don’t know about. But once you understand it and tame it, you’ll see how much better your photos will be. It’s is the subtle difference between that extra pop and a flat image! The 3D look that it can deliver is surreal. You’ll be able to see and experience it even when not looking at 100%.

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The Truth About Constant Light vs Flash for Photographers

Which side are you on with Constant Light vs Flash?

If you are struggling to use more than just natural light, we’ve got just the thing. Many people these days reach for constant light. Tons of YouTube videos show you how to use it. But proper photography needs more than that. Does this mean you can’t shoot great photos with Constant light? You totally can! I don’t know about you, but I can’t name any lifelong photographers who’ve only used constant lighting. I’ve even seen the great Peter Hurley use strobes. But I can name a ton who’ve used flash! And in this cheat sheet, we’ll break constant light vs flash down further for you.

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TTL vs Manual Flash: What Photographers Need to Know

Many folks don’t know the difference between TTL vs manual flash, or how it will change the way they create.

Most photographers realize that flash output is still better than constant lighting. But the biggest struggle is with TTL vs. manual flash output. Most people don’t understand it. And to be honest, most experienced photographers are also frustrated with it. But in time, you learn to tell it what to do. Think about it this way. You use your camera in manual mode, right? And if you don’t, then you at least know how to do so. The strobe and flash output that you can get is similar.

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How to Get Sharper Images with Manual Focus Lenses

Getting sharper images from manual focus lenses is incredibly rewarding.

“Patience is a virtue,” is a quote that I’m convinced was first said by someone who used manual focus lenses. I’m kidding, but the proverb rings true for photographers. Many of us are impatient. And if you enjoy your photography hobby, you should relish the time. If you’re a professional photographer, then you most likely know how to make the most of manual focus lenses. Most importantly, the passionate photographers among us genuinely care about the artistic methods involved in shooting photos. Everything else around us is so automated and electronic. Sometimes, it’s nice to go back to the analog ways and do things ourselves. That’s why creating photos with manual focus lenses can be so rewarding.

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Why Live Composite is One of the Best Things to Happen To Cameras

The Live Composite feature is so incredibly fun to play with.

Unless you’re shooting with Olympus and Panasonic, you’ve probably never heard of Live Composite. In our constant search to move away from editing, this is a feature we adore. It means that a photographer needs to think about something beforehand. They need to be very careful. And best of all, they need to not rely on Photoshop. When someone says, “Photoshop it later,” a part of me dies inside. It’s awful. But with Live Composite, a photographer can stay out in the field creating. If you’re a hobbyist or a professional who really just wants to shoot, we encourage you to try it.

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Stopping Your Lens Down: What Photographers Always Forget About

Many photographers never stop their lenses down, but they should.

“LOOK AT THE BOKEH!!!!” Does that sound like you when you were starting out? Well, unfortunately, many photographers never leave that phase. With so many new people getting into photography, we find it essential to do our part. Just remember that your lens often has more than one aperture. You can even stop it down in half stops and 1/3 stops. In general, it’s great to leave it wide open when shooting in low light. But turn off that electronic shutter setting and learn to focus on the exposure of the scene. More than that, use the storytelling elements a lens affords you.

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The Three Color Portrait Method Will Drastically Improve Your Photos

The three-color portrait method has been used by so many professional photographers.

We’re big fans of keeping it simple when you can. This is critical for portrait photography. The objective is to put the emphasis on a single person. So you need to find a way to make them stand out. Naturally, the human eye goes to them. You can also use the depth of field and bokeh to single them out. Then there’s also composition rules. But what about composing by color? There are lots of ways to do this. And with portrait photography, it can be a game-changer. The truth is that not every excellent piece of wardrobe works with every scene, so keeping it simple is the best approach. Focusing on using it, three colors can do a lot for your portrait photography. Let’s take a closer look!

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Every Aspiring Photojournalist Needs This Cheat Sheet for Better Stories

A photojournalist who wants to grow should check out the shot list that your story needs.

You’re a documentary photographer, or a photojournalist, or someone looking to tell a story. This doesn’t include street photography (that’s not photojournalism). But you want to create a narrative in a photo story. Think about the who, what, when, where, how, and why of the story. You need to answer questions. And most importantly, you need to rely on a tried and true method that’s been in use for decades. It’s time for you, the photojournalist, to think like a film-maker.

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Want Better Bokeh from Your Lens? You Should Try This

How to get the best bokeh from your lens isn’t rocket science, but it isn’t apparent either.

We all love fast aperture lenses. In the past decade, they’ve gotten so much better too. The Japanese, Korean and German manufacturers have an obsession with achieving gorgeous bokeh. So does the company that makes your phone, but they do it in a far different way. We’d all like better bokeh from our lenses. And the key to it is to do a bit of trickery. Today’s Cheat Sheet focuses on how to get better bokeh from your lens. One of these steps is obvious, but we’re sure you haven’t tried the others.

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Want a Kodak Black and White Film Guide? Check This Out!

Kodak black and white film is beautiful in the right situations; let our guide help you pick which film to shoot.

Some photographers have shot their entire portfolio with one film. It’s helped them get a very signature look. But others like to experiment. We’re sure many of you sometimes wonder which Kodak film to choose. The company has three black and white emulsions that are incredibly popular. T-Max 400, T-Max P3200, and Tri-X 400 are what’s available in America. That’s not to say that you can’t do one genre with only one film. But instead, this is a best practice guide. Not many people can shoot great portraits with T-Max P3200. Similarly, Tri-X 400 is the choice for many photojournalists for legitimate reasons. T-Max 400 is best for the photographer who wants the sharpest ISO 400 film photos.

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TIFF vs RAW: The Thing That Most Photographers Don’t Know

TIFF and RAW images aren’t the same things.

Both TIFF and RAW images are similar, right? Well, they’re both lossless image formats. But that’s about where it all ends. They have starkly different use cases. And in the past decade, we can’t remember many cameras that let you shoot in the TIFF format. Professional photographers have both types in their archives. Most typically, TIFF files come from an export these days. RAW files are imported into a computer, edited, etc. If you’re an editor, you’ve probably received a TIFF image sent to you before. If you’re a hobbyist, then chances are that you’ve never messed with a TIFF image unless you’re scanning film. So we’re going to dissect this a bit. We’ll cite an expert in the debate of TIFF vs RAW.

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Why Your Phone Is One of the Best Tools for Street Photography

Did you know that the mobile phone in your pocket is actually 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, so what better way to capture them than with the cameras 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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