Portrait Color Management

Photographers generally get three chances to ensure their portraits have beautiful color: Create accurate white balance, be deliberate about lighting and bring it all together in post
Portrait Color Management
Accurate color management is crucial for ensuring portrait subjects look their best, highlighting beautiful hair and lovely skin tones. Color is simple, right? For many shots, as long as the white balance is somewhat close to correct, your picture will be fine, right? Well, not necessarily, especially when it comes to portraits. What might pass as good... Read more

Tethering A Sony a7R III

How to ensure smooth and seamless shooting with a Sony a7R III connected to a computer
Not long ago, I purchased a Sony a7R III mirrorless camera. And while so much of its tremendous functionality comes easily, it took me a bit to determine the best, easiest and most functional approach to using the a7R III for tethered capture. After a bit of trial and error, I honed in on my preferred approach. And now I find it to be more reliable... Read more

Add A Fill Light At The Camera

The on-axis fill light adds more than shadow detail. It also increases nuance and production value in portraits of all kinds.
When, as a young photographer, I was taught the secrets of portraiture by working shooters, their approach to fill light was simple: Place a reflector—either white or silver or sometimes even gold—opposite the key light to illuminate the shadows. This works, sure, and it works well. But, done poorly, it has some issues. First of all, with the fill... Read more
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4 Tips For Portraits On The Run

How to create simple, effective travel portraits
“Okay, this is perfect,” I explain to my workshop group under the blazing Namibian sun. “Let’s ask the woman to stand in the doorway of this hut. The roof will provide covered shade, and the interior will be completely black.” We are visiting a Himba village in Namibia near the Angolan border. Our guide has arranged a visit to a tribe that... Read more

Lighting Studio On The Go

Go mobile by building a rolling studio lighting kit
For photographers who like total control over their lighting, there’s nothing better than studio-style strobes. They provide power and versatility, with an abundance of easily adjustable light modifiers readily available. But while they may be the ultimate photographic lighting tools, they’re also kind of cumbersome and they’re not particularly... Read more

How To Digitize Film Without A Scanner

Get better quality, and do it faster and easier, by shooting negatives and transparencies with a camera and film-digitizing adapter
How To Digitize Film Without A Scanner
Scanning film is tedious, time-consuming and expensive, and the results don’t always seem worth the effort. But since most photographers these days are armed with high-resolution digital cameras, that opens up a faster, easier and more affordable option to digitize film—and the results are outstanding. It’s the Nikon ES-2 Film Digitizing Adapter,... Read more

Guide To Focus Stacking

Use this technique to gain better control of your photograph’s focus
Today’s cameras are impressive in how accurately they can autofocus: Look how deftly my camera locked focus on the subject’s face in a moving car as I panned and while the primary subject zoomed through the frame. But even today’s cameras can have trouble focusing in some situations, and that’s where focus stacking can help. The companies that... Read more

Sensor Cleaning Best Practices

Safe and effective techniques for getting dust off a camera sensor
Sensor Cleaning Best Practices
Mirrorless cameras are missing one thing: the mirror. Sure, not having a swinging mirror in the body enables all sorts of things, including smaller bodies, lower weights, fewer moving parts, live-view electronic viewfinders, etc. Unfortunately, it also allows dust and dirt to more easily come into contact with the sensor. So, as I recently discovered... Read more

Spot Healing Brush Options

Content Aware, Proximity Match and Create Texture. Which one should you use?
Spot Healing Brush Options
If there’s one Photoshop tool that makes an impact on almost every image I shoot, it’s the spot healing brush. This tool is as close to a magic fix as anything in the application. Simply click it on a spot in your image you want to eliminate, and voila, like magic, Photoshop makes that spot disappear. It’s perfect for repairing blemishes, sensor... Read more

Classic Portrait Light

Transform your portraits by learning these four lighting patterns.
Rembrandt Lighting: Named for the famous 17th-century Dutch master painter, this technique emphasizes light and shadow, adding mystery and a bit of drama. When learning to craft beautifully lit portraits, you will find no better place to start than with classical lighting patterns. These lighting setups have laid the foundation for portraiture since... Read more

Updating Camera Firmware

Manufacturers often offer free updates to camera software in order to improve their functionality and features
Updating Camera Firmware
Firmware is the software that makes your camera work. Think of it like the operating system that runs the internal computer. The camera manufacturer will occasionally offer updates to the firmware in order to introduce new features and make improvements to the camera—things like video frame rates, autofocus capabilities, image processing, operating... Read more

The Top Five Non-Camera Accessories That Should Be In Your Kit

Of course you need a camera, lenses, batteries and media. But what other gear should you consider essential?
Your go-to kit likely contains your cameras, lenses, batteries and media. But you never know what situations may arise in the studio or on the road. Adding these five accessories to your kit will make sure you’re prepared for almost anything.  Neutral Gray Card No matter how you set the white balance on your camera—be it auto, by Kelvin... Read more
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