This is How You Should Crop a Portrait


If you’re looking to get into portraiture then you’ll learn very quickly that sometimes a photo should be cropped in order to make it better. It’s a skill that many photo editors learn quickly. Digital Camera World just released this awesome infographic on how to crop a portrait. It covers a basic fundamental that I was taught in photo school: Don’t crop at a joint–ever! always crop a little bit above or below it.

Save this infographic for when you’re editing: print it out and put it on your wall next to your monitor–it will provide a very quick, easy and visual guide for you when editing.

Rolleiflex Hacked To Take Fujifilm Instax Images


We love crafty people and the crafty projects that they do. Kevin over at TheFilmme hacked his TLR to take Fujifilm Instax images. The way to do this is by using a black film changing bag, either the Instax adapter for the Lomography LC-A+ or an Instax camera, and a Rolleicord Plate Adapter. The entire hack requires removal of the camera back and placing the film very securely and safely in the plate adapter–hopefully within a dark room or changing bag if you’re that skilled.

The results are pretty darn cool if you nail them correctly. Check out the Google Translation if you’re interested.

Via Filmwasters and TheFilme

Christian Cantrell Creates Scenes Using Legos and Awesomeness

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All images by Christian Cantrell and used with permission

Christian Cantrell is the Engineering Manager over at Adobe–but when he’s not playing Bruce Wayne he puts on the cape and cowl to become one kick ass photographer. His latest gig involves loads of softly lit and bokehlicious photos involving LEGOs. The photos depict scenes involving lots of famous characters, like Darth Vader. More of the images are after the jump and can be seen on Cantrell’s 500px page. And in case you’re wondering, Christian shot the photos with a Canon 7D and the 60mm f2.8 macro lens.

“What I enjoy most about photographing Legos is the challenging of infusing as much life and emotion as possible into largely expressionless toys. I know I’ve succeeded when I see that people are touched, inspired, amused, or even offended by simple pieces of plastic,” said Mr. Cantrell when I asked him about the series.

Be sure to also check out Christian’s Adobe Blog, his personal blog, his main websiteTwitter feed, and Facebook page.

Via the 500px Blog


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This Photo of a Parasite Attached to a Fish’s Tongue Isn’t From the Movie Aliens


Nom, nom, nom, nom, nom. That’s probably what this parasite says when it attaches itself onto a fish’s tongue. This incredible but simplistic photo above shows the creature known as the Tongue Eating Parasite that latches itself onto a fish’s tongue. According to this awesome and very well done short video by Anna Rothschild of Nova, the parasites tend to enter fishes many a time–we’re talking about two or three at a time. They can also change their genders. Usually the female will latch onto the back of the tongue of the fish, suck its blood and drain the tongue until it is no more. The fish then uses the parasite as its own tongue. The males will live in the fish’s gills and try to mate with the female while she is attached. The female continues to live her life sucking blood or feeding on the mucus within the fish.

This is one nasty critter, but it is one great image that simply demonstrates everything that the parasite does in just a couple of pixels.

Via I Fucking Love Science. Photo from Treehugger and shot by Dr. Nico Smit.

Dodge and Burn Shows off The Evolution of the TLR Serigraph

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Dodge and Burn is the maker of lots of cooler T-Shirts than some of the other stuff you see out there–and not everyone shoots RAW either. For those of you interested in the original RAW and are a fan of TLR cameras, this piece of artwork might find a great home in your apartment–under the right light of course.

In their newsletter today, the company stated that while making these serigraphs, “we have stayed true to traditional craftsmanship and production techniques. Each camera was carefully researched and illustrated by hand. The serigraphs were then screen-printed by our fine-art printers, one of the best in New York City.”

The posters (or serigraphs) are 20.5 x 28.5 inches and come in two colors: red with white text (which will look great along side your White Striped Vinyls) and metallic silver with white text. Ink for the silver poster was mixed with aluminum paste, creating a metallic sheen that offsets the cameras beautifully while playfully interacting with the white type. Two three inch bulldog clips are included for hanging and you can snag yours for $75.00 each at their online store.

Photo of a Woman’s Commitment to Her Horse Goes Viral


Photo via the Telegraph, from REX features (Peter Ristevski)

While perusing Facebook, I found this touching photo of a woman in Australia trying to save her horse. The story behind the image is that 18 year old Astro (the steed) got trapped in mud on a beach. Anyone that has been around horses also know that they’re not light animals–they’re quite heavy and that is why cavalry would never traditionally charge through mud. Seeing this, Nicole Graham (the women pictured, who owns more than 10 horses and runs a horse dentistry business) jumped into the mud and held the horse’s head over the mud for three hours to protect it from drowning in the tide.

A tractor and harness were able to help free the creature.

But this one gripping image (the photographer is apparently unknown and not cited on Facebook, but we’d love to talk to you) has gone viral on the web with over 11,000 likes and over 4,000 shares. The image represents the bond between a woman and her horse that she obviously cares so deeply about–and she refuses to give up on it even in the darkest hours.

Editor’s Note/Correction: Apparently this story is from last year. Sorry about the confusion. Either way, it is still an excellent photo.

Via Wild for Wildlife and Nature and The Telegraph

Tim Briner Captures Grand Central Terminal in NYC Turning 100


Photo via the NYTimes. All photos in this story used with permission from Timothy Briner

Tim Briner is a documentary/fine art photographer that I’ve had the pleasure of working alongside with. Recently, he pointed his lens at NY’s legendary Grand Central Terminal. This year, the major transit station turned 100 years old. Tim took to the station to not only document some of the sights to behold, but also the people that go in and out each day.

As Whitewall magazine notes, many of the commuters carried bags from major clothing shops because this project was also worked on around New York Fashion Week.

Hit the jump for more photos from Tim. Also be sure to check out his website–particularly part 1 and 2 of his Gotham City project.

Via Huffington Post

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Scott “The Sartorialist” Schuman Interviews Steve McCurry

Steve McCurry is an influencer and inspiration to many of us: and recently we learned that he inspires Scott Schuman–a man that is an inspiration to me personally. In the video, the two talk about finding the light–and observing natural light to create the best images. Steve has also shown off nearly every single one of the photos from his last roll of Kodachrome, though both myself and photographer Bill Wadman are wondering why not everything was shown.

In the photo community, Steve is far more famous than Scott. However, Scott’s domain is the fashion world. He left his day job as an Editor to take care of his child and so also started the Sartorialist–one of the best fashion blogs currently out there. In terms of street photography, street portraiture, and an overall business model–Scott has been a huge inspiration to me since leaving my own day job.

This is only Part 1 of the video series, and Part 2 is yet to come.

These Snowflake Macro Shots Were Done with a Canon Powershot


Image shot by Alexey Kljatov. All images in this post shot by and used with permission from Alexey Kljatov.

Alexey Kljatov is from Moscow, Russia and is quite the hobbyist photographer. He loves light painting, Sci-Fi and macro work. In particular though, he recently showed off a series of really awesome macro snowflakes that he shot. He also links to a tutorial on exactly how to do this and talks about it more on his LiveJournal.

More of Alexey’s work here on his Flickr. But hit the jump for a couple of selections of the images as well as his rig to shoot them: which is essentially a Canon Powershot A650 IS with a Helios 44 M-5 attached to the front.

Interested in more Macro tips? Check out this tutorial we did on how to use a flash for your macro photography.

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Eirik Loves to Make His Own Stuff, So He Built Himself a 6×17 Panoramic Medium Format Camera

Eirik Russel Roberts DIY 6x17 Camera

I’d come to the conclusion that I’d like to build my own camera.” This is how it all began–the urge to build something unique and personal with his own hands. Soon after this thought formed in his mind, Eirik Russell Roberts stumbled across pictures taken with a 6×17 camera in the Torres del Paine in Chile. He was immediately hooked. And suddenly, he knew what kind of camera he was going to build: a 6×17 panoramic medium format camera. But that’s easier said than done.

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Photographer Recreates Famous Paintings Using His Daughter


Photos Used with Permission from Photographer Bill Gekas

Bill Gekas is an award winning photographer out of Australia and a recent piece that he did tips the scale in terms of portraiture and fine art. Bill found inspiration in paintings from the old masters, and while perusing through their work got the idea to recreate the works through photos. Now, this has been done before, but once someone considers how much set design (or masterful Photoshopping) goes into this, then you begin to understand why these images are just so much more beautiful.

With that said though, they do quite the job of standing out on their own. Take a look at some selects after the jump.

Via Fashionably Geek


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ESPN Recreates Famous Album Covers Using Athletes; Real Katy Perry Is Still Hotter


Photos by Matthias Clamer & ESPN

Every now and then, a creative director is given some extra leeway and some extra budget money to actually do something cool and creative. In this case, Matthias Clamer photographed famous music album covers using athletes. Among the covers are those from Nirvana, Beyonce, RUN DMC, Michael Jackson,  and more. But perhaps my favorite is the one remake of a Bob Dylan cover. There is something just so humanly romantic to it yet as a photographer who has spent lots of time behind the lens photographing weddings and engagements, I can see many photographers creating nearly the same image while making viewers want to be either the man or woman in the photo. That’s not to say that Matthias’s work can easily be duplicated necessarily; but that the concept is simplistic and works very well for the image.

There is a full round of on If It’s Hip, It’s Here. Sadly, Dave Chapelle wasn’t used as Rick James.

Via If It’s Hip, It’s Here

PS: Did anyone see Katy Perry’s Dress last night at the Grammy’s? Man, oh man.


Through the Lens: A Look Back at Miroslav Tichý

One of Tichý's cameras

One of Tichý’s cameras © Roman Buxbaum

Three years ago, I walked into the International Center of Photography for the first time before I was due to meet a friend. It was a chilly February afternoon in 2010 as I was working my way down from Central Park, where I had been taking some photos. I hadn’t heard of ICP before, but given my family roots in photography (you can see a truncated version of that in my staff bio), I felt compelled to enter. The major exhibition on the main floor was that of Miroslav Tichý, a reclusive Czech photographer who, among other things I learned, made his own cameras, cut his own glass, and paid no mind to the quality of his images. There’s more to be told, and I will tell it to you as it shook the foundation of my then-nascent practice and understanding of photography.


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Most of the Photos from Steve McCurry’s Last Roll of Kodachrome Are Now Live


Recently, there was a documentary on Steve McCurry’s last roll of Kodachrome done by National Geographic. But thanks to the clever pointing out of On Taking Pictures, we now have a view of nearly ever single photo that Steve shot on the last roll. When you really get down to it, you start to not only see a culmination of all that he’s shot, but you get to study his mentality a bit more. For example, Robert DeNiro is the only celebrity to grace the roll twice. But then you get into the Bollywood stars and lots of the special people in India that Steve loved to photograph. A lot of these photos are posed portraits using lots of soft lighting that also seem very natural.

Keep going through the images though, and you’ll see a return to Steve’s documentary and street photography work. They’re quite nice and McCurry is an inspiration to nearly anyone out there.

Via On Taking Pictures

Photographer Documents Exorcism; Possessed Grabs Camera


Exorcisms, at least on television and in the movies seem like quite the scary occurrence. But when we see them, they’re usually done by the Catholic Church. We never really see them done by any other culture. Being of Indian descent, looking at this recent blog post on the Photographer’s Blog from Reuters is particularly troubling. Danish Siddiqi (whom the above photo was shot by) had quite the time photographing the occurrence it seems. According to him, the person perhaps became possessed when she turned emotionally weak. The exorcism process involves being beaten with a broom, hair pulling, and other physical forms of violence. At one point, a priest even says that if the demon returns, he will make it drink water from a lower caste.

The caste system, for those of you still new to Indian culture, is a form of hierarchy dating back to the days before Jesus. There were the priests (Brahmins, which my family belonged to), the warriors, the artisans and more. But at the bottom is the untouchables–and these people are still very highly discriminated against for the sole reason that it is part of their culture. Think of it as racism in America, which still happens every day.

Head over to the Reuters Photographer’s Blog to read more of the account and view Danish’s photos.

Tom Broadbent Documents All Those Furries That You See on Forums

At Home With The Furries

If you’re used to creeping around 4Chan or Reddit, you’ll know the story about furries. For the rest of us, they’re a meme of a sort that started at a Sci-Fi con as a drawing and then went viral. At the heart, they’re personified animals–and they digg sexy time the way humans do. We’ll stop right there.

Tom Broadbent recently did a project documenting people who cosplay as these characters, but wanted to show them doing daily everyday tasks. This is similar to the project documenting superheros during daily life that was done previous.

Head over to Tom’s site for the best web viewing experience.


Via The Verge, Feature Shoot, iO9 and Flavorwire

Behold the Magnificence of These Early 1900’s Autochromes from Paris, France

Notre Dame - 1920

Notre Dame – 1920

Going back to the early days of photography is not always enjoyable. The oldest photographs of mankind are dark, undetailed, monochrome pictures that seem to show hardly anything. Only at a fifth glance and with an explanation provided by an expert will you be able to see anything in them. However, humans’ first forays into color photography were pretty amazing from the start — like these ‘Autochrome’ color photographies from early 1900’s Paris.


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This Polaroid Camera Will Take Much More Awesome Photos After You Nom on Popsicles


Maxim Grew is quite the tinkerer, after being inspired by wooden cameras, he decided to put together his own polaroid camera using popsicle sticks. The camera is complete with a lens, bellows, sticks, and a polaroid back holder where he is currently using Fuji 100C–one of my favorite films. After the jump is the video of how he put it together and sample images.

Via DIY Photography


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Exploring Self-Perception Via Broken Mirrors


Katie Thompson is a fashion and portrait photographer that works between Chicago and New York, and is someone that understands the importance of good light in an image. In this series, she wanted to explore the ideas of self-perception and body-image, topics which has said she finds fascinating. By using strategically placed mirrors she was able to create the distorted image of her model, which she said she found to still be beautiful, but carried the darker undertone of the topic she was exploring.

This work isn’t new to Katie though, most of her portfolio has a fantasy-like feel behind it that makes it more unique than other photographers’.

If you’d like to see more of Katie’s work, visit  her site, find her on Flickr, and connect with her on Facebook.

(Via Profoto Blog)


Looking at Spain Through a Fisheye Lens


Recently, reader Iulian Marcu sent us a couple of photos from his recent trip to Spain. As we’ve discovered in photographing and large cities, a fisheye lens can be very instrumental and give you loads of creative effects and views that you wouldn’t have otherwise. Mr. Marcu did just that as he travelled throughout the city of León. Originally from Romania, he spent eight months in Spain where he documented the photogenic city as an enthusiast photographer. Iulian’s photos also help to prove that it’s the photographer that creates the images, not the gear–as his modest setup includes a Nikon D90 and a fisheye lens. Black and white photos seem to be his favorite. Take a look at his photos after the jump or feel free to peruse his Flickr, 500PX, Google + and blog.


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Shooting 8×10 X-Ray Film in Madison Square Park, NYC


Madison Square Park in NYC is known for its awesome art work, its friendly squirrels, and currently for this awesome Buckeyball surrounded by awesome and comfortable benches. Photographer Shawn Hoke recently took to the area to try something new and awesome. Loading up his 8×10 camera with Fuji HR-T X-ray film, he went about trying to photograph this recent installation in the park. The problem: the film wasn’t clearly labelled to tell what sensitivity it was. Taking a chance, Hoke went for ISO 80-100. One pack of the film new goes for around $92 on Amazon. According to a Fujifilm PDF brochure, the film is high contrast and good for overall radiology use. But some of the film can go up to ISO 800.

He also talks about some of the other crazy things working against him–such as the emulsion being on both sides, how they render green and blue, and that’s only a bit on top of the rigors that come with focusing a large format camera and metering the scene accurately with a handheld light meter plus taking into consideration reflections and more.

Take a look at the photos and story from Hoke.