A Collection Of Early Kodak Award Winners

In what appear to be some of Kodak's most trying times, The New York Times Lens blog has given us a beautiful tribute to happier days around Rochester. This great gallery of images from the early 20th century is filled with award-winning snapshots from Kodak's formative years. These images were submitted to contests hosted by "Big Yellow" and they serve not only to showcase life from a different era, but just how amazing even a snapshot photograph—made with the most rudimentary films in rudimentary cameras—can be. And that is a testament to the real power of a photograph: it's not about the gear that made it, but the vision of the photographer along with the magic of the moment and the technique (which, of course, does include the equipment). If these folks can do it, we can do it.  

http://lens.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/03/02/an-amateur-snapshot-of-kodaks-early-days/
DPMag
In what appear to be some of Kodak's most trying times, The New York Times Lens blog has given us a beautiful tribute to happier days around Rochester. This great gallery of images from the early 20th century is filled with award-winning snapshots from Kodak's formative years. These images were…

Defining Sepia

Here's an interesting little sidebar by photo guru Chase Jarvis. He poses the question on his blog, "What the hell is sepia?" He makes a good point, because to many photographers sepia is just an effect achieved by clicking the appropriate preset or filter in a given photo editing application. But as Chase points out, sepia actually has a long and rich tradition in the photo world. When I was just a young pup, I made actual sepia prints in an actual darkroom. Sepia, you see, is a photographic toning technique from the silver darkroom. Sepia became popular in the 19th century, and remains so still today. Read a little more about the origins and history of sepia at Chase's site, then think about how to apply its effects to make your black and white photos look even better. 

http://blog.chasejarvis.com/blog/2012/03/sepia-what-the-hell-is-it/
DPMag
Here's an interesting little sidebar by photo guru Chase Jarvis. He poses the question on his blog, "What the hell is sepia?" He makes a good point, because to many photographers sepia is just an effect achieved by clicking the appropriate preset or filter in a given photo editing application.…

The Science And Magic Of Light

I teach a studio product lighting class and I'm pretty proud of what my students seem to get out of each lesson. I'm pretty strong on lighting technique because in my own undergraduate work I found that I didn't get enough technical lighting foundation to feel like a well-equipped photographer. Lest my students feel equally unprepared, I focus on technique and they seem to appreciate it. But I'm embarrassed to say I am unfamiliar with this book I just learned about from the Cool Tools blog. It's called "Light: Science and Magic," which appears to be the perfect manual for a lighting class like mine. Based on the chapter previews available at Amazon, the book covers much the same technical ground that I focus on in my class. Maybe I'll have to invest in this book, not only for my students' sake, but for my own too. If you want to build your own technical lighting foundation, consider starting with this book.

http://www.kk.org/cooltools/archives/006122.php
DPMag
I teach a studio product lighting class and I'm pretty proud of what my students seem to get out of each lesson. I'm pretty strong on lighting technique because in my own undergraduate work I found that I didn't get enough technical lighting foundation to feel like a well-equipped photographer.…

The End Of Transparency Film

Just when it seemed like maybe Kodak had bottomed out and things would maybe start looking better for the industry giant, Kodak last week announced that it will no longer make any slide films at all. Bye bye, Ektachrome. Apparently transparency films have accounted for less than ten percent of the company's film sales for many years, but still the difference between "some" and "none" seems quite dramatic. If you're a transparency shooter, it appears that you've got about another six to nine months, according to The Online Photographer, before your camera store's shelves are officially empty. This brave new photographic world sure is exciting, but on days like these it can be downright depressing. 

http://theonlinephotographer.typepad.com/the_online_photographer/2012/03/kodak-all-slide-films-are-now-gone.html
DPMag
Just when it seemed like maybe Kodak had bottomed out and things would maybe start looking better for the industry giant, Kodak last week announced that it will no longer make any slide films at all. Bye bye, Ektachrome. Apparently transparency films have accounted for less than ten percent of…

Photoshop Iris Blur Preview

I love the Photoshop Sneak Peeks that Adobe releases prior to every new version of the software. From Adobe's perspective it's a great way to drum up interest and excitement in a new product. But from a user's perspective... well, it's sorta the same thing: a great way to get excited for new features in the next version of Photoshop. John Paul Caponigro linked to this new sneak peek into Photoshop CS6, featuring a simple, powerful, and downright awesome-looking tool called Iris Blur. The idea is to make a tool that's essentially a one-click way to recreate a shallow depth of field in any image. If you didn't shoot at a wide aperture—a big iris—you can create the look easily by positioning a point in the center of an area you want to be sharp, and then dragging a circle to enlarge the area of focus or shrink it. It's a pretty great looking tool that I can't wait to get my hands on. 

http://www.johnpaulcaponigro.com/blog/8018/photoshop-cs6-sneak-peek-6-iris-blur/
DPMag
I love the Photoshop Sneak Peeks that Adobe releases prior to every new version of the software. From Adobe's perspective it's a great way to drum up interest and excitement in a new product. But from a user's perspective... well, it's sorta the same thing: a great way to get…

Improve Your Video With A Rubber Band

The lines are blurring between photography and videography. I used to resist this, but no longer. For years, I felt like photography and videography had almost nothing in common. But then my clients started demanding video, and I started enjoying it, and the next thing you know I'm shooting the stuff on a fairly regular basis. The biggest problem, as far as I can tell, is that I'm making due with photography gear for some of my video projects. Case in point, I don't have a wonderfully smooth-panning professional video tripod head. That means I don't do a lot of moves with my camera, and certainly not while strapped down to my tripod. But this wonderful little tip from my favorite DIY Photography blog really does seem like an excellent, free, frankly ideal solution to this age-old videography problem. By using a simple rubber band to act as a shock absorber between your hand and the tripod head, you can start and stop panning motions without any herky-jerky impact on your shots. Even if you do have a high-end video head, this tip could really help you improve the subtlety of your movements. I love it! Read all about it at http://www.diyphotography.net/use-a-rubber-band-for-smooth-panning-shots.
DPMag
The lines are blurring between photography and videography. I used to resist this, but no longer. For years, I felt like photography and videography had almost nothing in common. But then my clients started demanding video, and I started enjoying it, and the next thing you know I'm shooting the…
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