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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Try This: When Photowalking, Shoot in Manual Mode Not Aperture Mode

The mere act of putting the extra effort into taking your photos will result in naturally better images that you’re paying more attention to.

The next time you go on a photo walk, I encourage every single one of you to turn off all the automatic modes and shoot completely manual. While this may sound like something lots of folks do, I’m sure that you all know in the deepest darkest parts of your hearts that you’re not doing this. Many folks shoot in aperture priority or even P for Professional mode. I did it. You most likely do it. Lots of folks do. And I think that we should all stop operating on autopilot and instead make more concerted efforts to take better images instead of just shooting hundreds just because we can. It genuinely isn’t going to make any of us any better no matter how hard you’ll try to argue against it.

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Cheap Photo: Love Bokeh? For $9 You’ll Want This Software (and More)

These photography software packages will help you protect and elevate your work, all while saving you money!

We have found some photography software deals that will save you a ton of time and money, but you’ll have to hurry to get them. Have you ever lost images due to technical failure? Right now you can get Coolmusters Data Recovery program for as little as $19! Want to make outstanding composites with a single click of your mouse? For a limited time you can get the Create Magical Composite Photos In One Click With StudioMagic bundle for just $49.95 (reg $249), and you can grab four professional Photoshop plug-ins that will make your life so much easier for only $49 (reg $120). Join us after the break for more photography software deals! Continue reading…

This New Lidar Surveillance Camera Can See You from 28 Miles Away

surveillance camera

Big brother can watch you from across the city with this new Lidar powered surveillance camera.

Just when you thought things couldn’t get much creepier, along comes a story about a new Lidar powered surveillance camera system so powerful it can cut through 28 miles (48km) of city smog and see you stuff your face with those six Taco’s you purchased for lunch. Join us after the break for more details about this new, powerful shoe box sized surveillance camera system. Continue reading…

KONO! Launches New Funky 35mm Film, Introduces Original Six Pack

KONO! has just rolled out some new stuff for film photographers who enjoy shooting with their funky-colored emulsions.

It’s been a while since we heard something from the folks of KONO!, but they’re back with some welcome updates! First, they have a new, reanimated 35mm film: the Original MIRAGE. Second, their Original reanimated films now come in a Six Pack for those who want to try out a fun selection from their lineup! If you’re an experimental film photographer looking to try something new, these funky films could do the trick. The new KONO! film is the Original Mirage, which they described as being reanimated by not one, but two awesome colors. The effect changes from subtle hues when shot in sunny and bright conditions, to highly saturated colors when shot in the sunset. “Pictures shot in bright daylight invoke the feeling of a warm, late summer day and as soon as it gets darker, the colors get more prominent and richer.”

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Skanda Gautam’s Fascinating Street Captures of Nepal Festivals

All photos by Skanda Gautam. Used with Creative Commons permission.

Kathmandu-based photojournalist Skanda Gautam is one of our go-to photographers whenever we get curious about life in Nepal. It’s easy to see why with some of his work we’ve previously featured. We’re adding one more to our pile of favorites of his: the beautiful Culture Series in Nepal, which showcases some fascinating scenes during festivals in Nepal in February. If the country is still on your to-visit list, we’re sure these photos will inspire you to keep an eye out for the next festivals!

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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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JP Stones Recreates Indigenous Aztec Myths with Cinematic Portraits

Fascinating Aztec myths come to life through cinematic portraits in JP Stones’ latest cultural workshop project.

It’s been a while since we last placed the spotlight on the stunning portrait photography project and workshop of Mexico-based JP Stones, which showcase the rich and vibrant Aztec culture. He has since continued with the project, adding another dimension to it with a current focus on recreating Aztec myths. If you’re just as curious as we are about this latest development, we’re sure you’ll be impressed and inspired!

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Why It’s So Important to Have Other Hobbies Besides Photography

Photography is fantastic; but if you’re going to do it then consider having other fulfilling hobbies.

While photography is a fantastic passion and hobby to have, I don’t at all think that it should be the sole thing that brings you joy in life. The world is a fantastic place filled with tons of variety and if you limit yourself to just one hobby, it can get boring and monotonous. Instead, you need to be able to give yourself a variety. Think of it as a diet. Unfortunately there isn’t a single one food that you can have over and over again to stay very healthy. However with a variety, you can stay healthy and continue to go about your daily life. Sustainability needs at least a small variety of things. But flourishing is best done with a plethora of choices.

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6 of Our Favorite Third Party Prime Lenses for Fujifilm X Mount Cameras

These third party, prime lenses for Fujifilm X Mount cameras are often overlooked, but deserve to be given a chance.

Fujifilm makes some gorgeous lenses for their X Mount series cameras. They are so good that Fujifilm believes keeping a closed system is what’s best for them and their cameras. The closed system hasn’t stopped some manufacturers from trying though, and there are quite a few third party prime lenses available on the Fujifilm platform that excel. It’s just a shame that they aren’t talked about nearly as often as Fujifilm’s own offerings. Fujifilm’s decision to not share the secrets of their autofocusing system has frustrated the likes of Sigma and Tamron to no end. This hasn’t stopped the likes of Zeiss, Rokinon, and Mitakon from making autofocus and manual focus prime lenses for the system that are more than capable of producing excellent images. Let’s take a quick look at six of the best third party, prime lenses available with Fujifilm’s X mount on board.

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Mary Ellen Mark: On Poignant Portraits and Portrayals

If you have a growing interest in portrait photography with a documentary goal, the work of Mary Ellen Mark is definitely among those that you should study.

We’re sure that a fair number of photographers out there are interested in street portraiture and documentary portraits, so it’s only proper for us to bring some inspiration from Mary Ellen Mark. The late American photojournalist remains one of the most important and prolific documentary photographers of her time, best known for her poignant portraiture. During her 2013 lecture at the Penny W. Stamps School of Art & Design of the University of Michigan, Marks presented some of her most unforgettable projects shot in India, Mexico, across the US, and Iceland and talked about the stories behind them.

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This Panoramic Photo was Shot with Multi-Plate, Multi-Lens Daguerreotype

If you’re looking for novel and challenging ways to create your next panoramic photo, the “antorama” will certainly be of interest to you.

Today’s technology has given us many ways to create panoramic photos, but we bet that all of you are yet to try shooting with this technique. San Diego-based Anton Orlov has been busy experimenting with some daguerreotype techniques, but there’s one project that he was able to do successfully. He recently shared with us the results of an interesting panoramic photography method that he developed himself: the “Antorama.”

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Yodica Films Are All ISO 400 and Have Cool Names Like Pegasus

If you’re craving for more colors and cool effects in your film photography, Yodica offers a lot of fun options for you to try.

Can’t get enough of those emulsions with various creative effects and crazy colors? These films from companies like Revolog, KONO!, and Dubble remain popular creative tools for experimental film photographers, and we can’t deny that they can definitely produce some pretty surreal results. We recently got word of Yodica, a Milan-based brand that offers a pretty cool roster of these fun films. They’re looking into launching their website and a new film soon, so if you’re looking for more options to those quirky emulsions, you might want to keep an eye on their goodies.

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This Could Well be the First Handheld Wet Collodion Selfie Ever

Ever wondered if it’s possible to do a handheld selfie with wet collodion?

We’re big fans of pushing the limits of photography regardless of the medium, so imagine our wonder when someone answered with a resounding yes! Last time we shared some cool stuff from San Diego-based Anton Orlov of the Photo Palace Bus, it involved a 4×5 camera with an f0.7 lens. Recently, he got in touch with us and told us about his recent projects, including what is most likely the world’s first handheld wet collodion selfie ever. But wait, doesn’t wet collodion involve an achingly slow exposure time and sturdy tripods? Well, that’s what he sought to address to create his unique selfie!

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Cheap Photo: This Bundle of 4,000 Lightroom Presets is Just $39

If you’re looking to speed up post processing, or want to add some creative flair to your images, these Lightroom Presets are for you.

We all know that time is money, so the more time we can spend behind the camera taking pictures the better. This incredible bundle of 4,000 Lightroom presets (which costs only $39) will allow you to add a clean, consistent look and feel to your images with one single click of your mouse. Hours, upon hours will be saved in post, which means you can be out creating more images, and making more money. The 4,000 Unique Lightroom Presets Bundle has a massive discount of 86% for a limited time. The 4,000 Unique Lightroom presets bundle contains just about every type of preset you could ever imagine. With the click of your mouse, you’ll be able to create stunning looking images that you can leave as is, or you can tweak away until your heart is content. Lightroom presets give us a fantastic foundation to build upon, and they can save us precious hours in post.

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Shimoda Releases Shoulder Strap Line Especially Designed for Female Adventure Photographers

If you’re a female outdoor photographer struggling with the ill-fitting straps of your camera bag, this new shoulder strap line by Shimoda is certainly for you. 

While photographers today have virtually unlimited options when it comes to camera bags, choices especially designed for women are few and far between. However, this new offering could change that. Adventure camera bag company Shimoda Designs has recently launched their new Women’s Shoulder Strap line, custom-tailored specifically for female adventure photographers.

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Wacom Completes Advanced Pen Tablet Series with New Intuos Pro Small

The new Wacom creative pen tablet is the company’s lightweight and portable addition to the now complete the Intuos Pro line. 

Photographers, digital artists, and designers looking to upgrade their creative pen tablet might want to check out the Wacom Intuos Pro Small. The new addition completes the company’s advanced creative pen tablet line, joining the Intuos Pro Medium and Intuos Pro Large sizes. With its host of features and benefits, this family of advanced pen and touch tablets promises expanded choices that bring the best of Wacom’s innovation and expertise in developing tools for digital art and design.

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Is 2019 the Year Photographers Finally Take Back Their Copyrights?

A new court ruling is the first indication that the tides are changing in regards to copyright laws and photography.

We see it time and time again; a company or an individual sees an image online that they like, so they take it and profit from it without consent from the photographer. This scenario plays out over and over again each and every day, but previous laws in the United States of America have made it virtually impossible for an individual to fight for compensation, even if the image was copyrighted. Thanks to the PPA (Professional Photographers of America) and a coalition of visual arts groups, a reform is coming that will finally favor photographers and other small creators. Continue reading…

Under $600: These Canon EF Mount Lenses Are Stellar

These EF Mount Canon lenses may be cheap, but don’t let the prices fool you.

One of the great things about the Canon platform is here are dozens of EF Mount lenses that are incredibly affordable; they’re solid performers too. If you have recently joined team Canon, or have been using their cameras for a while and need to expand your lens collection, but need to do it on the cheap, these EF Mount Canon lenses might be what you’re looking for. Join us after the break to see nine of our favorite lenses for Canon cameras that cost under $600. You’re probably thinking that lenses under $600 can’t be all that special, but you’d be wrong to think that. There are some top performers in this price range that will really amaze you. Sure, they may not feature weather sealing, or have the nicest feeling materials, but when it comes to image quality, you’ll be blown away. Let’s take a look at these ‘bang for your buck’ EF mount Canon lenses that will help you produce some quality images.

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Master Capture One Pro 12 with This Tutorial for Just $84 (48 Hours Only)

Capture One Pro

If you’ve made the switch to Capture One Pro 12, and now want to master it, this tutorial is for you!

If you’ve grown tired of paying a monthly fee for photo editing software and decided to go with Capture One Pro 12, you’ll absolutely love this tutorial. For a limited time (just 48 hours), you can get this guide for just $84! With this tutorial you will soon be a master when it comes to making your images look their very best in Capture One Pro 12. Capture One Pro 12 is one of the most powerful pieces of photo editing software on the market. The ability to be able to use layer masks, having the ability to make your RAW files sing, being able to seamlessly capture images through tethering, and being able to organize your images all in on package is truly amazing. Capture One Pro 12 is truly like Lightroom and Photoshop rolled into one powerful package. But you have to be able to find your way around the program and learn how to get the most out of it, and that’s where this excellent guide comes into play.

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