Your photo library is getting bigger every day—it’s a fact that photographers can’t escape in this age of digital and mobile photography. As your collection grows, it becomes more and more important to have an organization plan so you can find your images when you need them.
By adopting just a few simple practices, you can take advantage of one of Aperture’s strongest features: getting your image library in order.
Lightroom Mobile is a new iPad app that might just change the way you work on your photos. When I first started using it as a beta-tester a few months ago, I was curious but not convinced. Truth be told, when it comes to new technology I’m a bit of a skeptic; apart from something being new, I want to know if it’s actually going to improve my life. Yet after a few weeks, my skepticism completely dissolved and I now consider Lightroom Mobile to be a game changer for photographers in the best possible way.
For the last seven years, working in Lightroom meant working on a traditional computer (desktop or laptop). But as the photographer’s toolkit expanded to include other devices like mobile phones and tablets, it seemed like Lightroom was missing the boat—that is, until now.
Lightroom Mobile isn’t just another make-your-photos-look-better app. Sure, it does that, but more importantly it extends your Lightroom Desktop workflow in a helpful way. Here’s how it works.
Sometimes shapes tell a better story than details. When you photograph a subject in silhouette, you emphasize body language instead of facial expressions. A silhouette can be a powerful way to tell a story or convey a scene in an abstract way.
A couple of months ago on The Practicing Photographer, fashion and portrait photographer Troy Word joined Ben Long for a discussion of the joys of instant photography—specifically, using a Polaroid camera along with beautiful black-and-white film manufactured by Fuji.
Fuji’s film works in what are called “pack-film” Polaroids. After you shoot a photo with these cameras, you pull the exposed film out, wait a specified amount of time, and then peel the print away from its backing. It’s that process that earns this format its other name: peel-apart.
And it’s that peel that holds such appeal to Ben Long in this week’s The Practicing Photographer. When you separate a sheet of peel-apart film, you end up with your photo (obviously) and a negative.
Blur. We buy tripods and motion-stabilized lenses to avoid it, and we use Photoshop filters to try and fix it when it creeps into our shots.
But blur can also be a powerful tool for conveying a sense of motion in a static medium. A speeding car or motorcycle, a galloping horse or bounding dog, a cyclist on a track, a kid on a sled—subjects like these are natural candidates for some motion blur.
Last week, we published a new course called Photographing Clothes and Textiles. The fourth course from photographer Konrad Eek, it’s a detailed look at styling, lighting, and photographing everything from garments to beach towels.
Top-notch textile photography—indeed, top-notch product photography of all kinds—greatly benefits from dedicated lighting gear such as studio strobes or compact flash units. But what if you simply want to take an attractive product shot for an online auction or a webpage?
That’s the topic Ben Long explores in this week’s installment of The Practicing Photographer. Ben joins Konrad Eek for a look at some simple, inexpensive techniques for taking great-looking product shots without any external lighting gear.
The best way to extract every bit of image quality from your camera is to shoot in its raw mode. A raw image contains the exact data recorded by the camera’s sensor. By comparison, when a camera creates a JPEG image, it discards significant amounts of data in order to make the image more compact.
But life is full of trade-offs. Raw files provide far more flexibility when adjusting exposure and color balance in a post-processing program such as Adobe Lightroom, but use far more storage space than JPEGs. Many cameras have a “best of both worlds” mode in which they create a companion JPEG file along with a raw file. This lets you use the JPEG for minor edits but fall back on the raw file should the image require significant adjustments that, with a JPEG, could compromise quality.
Ben Long would like you to have an egg. As a photo subject, that is. In this week’s installment of his weekly series, The Practicing Photographer, Ben issues an assignment: Photograph an egg in a way that conveys emotion.
How do you get emotion out of an egg without drawing a face on it, Ben asks? Through lighting and composition. As this week’s two-video installment unfolds, we join Ben and photographer Troy Word in a classroom at the Oklahoma Arts Institute, where Troy gives his students this very assignment.
Troy demonstrates various lighting schemes, which you can replicate using anything from a studio light to a desk lamp or work light. As he moves the light around, changing its angle and its distance from the egg, the shadows on the egg change—and the mood in the resulting photos changes along with them.