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Natural Light

Some Weddings Require Helicopters And Snow Skis

This video is a bit unusual to say the least. When Anita Nowacka was asked to photograph a wedding on top of a remote part of Telluride, she grabbed her gear, suited up, and jumped into a helicopter. Shooting any wedding can be tough work but I can only imagine the issues Anita faced working in such extreme weather. This video is mostly a promotional video for Black Rapid's camera straps but it's still a fun video to watch especially if you enjoy shooting destination weddings. Check out the final photos over on Anita's Blog; I really love the shot of the musicians on skis as the bride makes her decent to the ceremony.

ROCKSTAR PHOTOGRAPHERS - Anita Nowacka from Mad Pants Productions on Vimeo.

How To Photograph/Film A First Descent

Many photographers claim that they will never shoot a wedding because there is too much pressure. If you miss some of the key moments, you will never get another chance. I agree with this to an extent but at least weddings have hundreds of "moments" over the course of a day. If I miss a couple, it's usually not a big deal. A first descent is another story though. In the video below, Lucas Gilman shows us all of the work that goes into capturing just 5-10 seconds. When it comes to something like this, there is absolutely no room for error.
JR Pastes His Photographs On Buildings Around The World

We were just sent an incredible TED talk with artist "JR". During his speech JR talks about his incredible art project that entailed traveling around the world, photographing locals with power stories, and then pasting their images on the sides and tops of buildings. The video is long, and starts off a bit slow, but really is worth finishing. At the end of the video JR gives us all a call to action by taking part in his new project "Inside Out". Art is a powerful thing, and can easily change the world.
Thousands Of Dollars Worth Of Gear Carried Through A Waterfall

If you ever need to carry your gear through a storm or even a waterfall, the Lowepro DZ 200 waterproof backpack is your ticket. But that's not what this post is really about...no way! Craig Pulsifer is a videographer and photographer based out of British Columbia (that's Canada for you across the sea). Instead of waiting for clients to come to him, Craig decided to start making his own commercial videos for products he personally uses like the Lowepro bag. While covering a story in the Philippines, Craig decided to hire a few local assistants to help him film video and audio clips for an exciting extreme style commercial he wanted in his port. The results might actually be better than the normal videos created by Lowepro themselves! By pushing his own creative talent and keeping the production level high, Craig has produced a compelling advertisement for his own personal show reel that will certainly help land him bigger jobs down the road. I still don't think I'll lend him any of my gear for his next adventure through the jungle!
A Slightly Different Skydiving Video Shot With A GoPro

Most skydiving videos are extremely high energy. This video, produced by BettyWantsIn.com, has a totally different vibe though. Instead of the heart pounding "plummeting to your death" feeling, this video creates a calm almost floating sensation by taking advantage of the 60fps that the GoPro can shoot. I thought it was creative so I figured I would share it.
A Glimpse Of Shooting Commercial Ads With Hot Lights

I was a little on the fence whether this video was good enough for the front page of Fstoppers or not. Although there is no technical information in this video, I think the final photos by Thomas Vassort are outstanding and should inspire us all to raise the bar on our commercial style shoots. I really love the aviation vibe Daniel Hechter went with on their Spring 2011 clothing campaign. It appears most if not all of these images were shot using natural light along with hot lights or HMIs which is probably a lighting style few of us have used. It also appears these were all shot on a regular old Canon DSLR (somewhat rare for campaigns like this). Check out the final photos in the full post.
Helmut Newton: Portrait Of A Fashion Icon (NSFW)

Recently over at the forum, a conversation came up about shooting nudes and glamour style images. One of our readers recommended a short documentary on famous fashion photographer Helmut Newton. We've all seen Helmut's images but if you were like me you might not have known the man behind the images. This 5 part documentary, filmed by June Netwon, shows Helmut working through his shoots with such famous models as Cindy Crawford and Claudia Schiffer as well as the legendary Luciano Pavarotti. It always amazes me how images I would consider 'snapshots' can become iconic images in the fashion world. Fashion photography today often involves studio lighting and extensive photoshop, but as this documentary shows, Helmut was able to cut through the heart of his subjects with nothing more than a film camera often times in auto exposure. Check out more about Helmut over at the Helmut bookstore.
Lakai Blows Up Skateboarders To Sell Shoes

You may remember a post that we did months back of Lakai shooting a video with skateboarder jumping over huge flames... Well I believe this video is actually older but I like it more. This time the shoe company used explosives to ramp up the excitment and I love it! Usually we post the BTS on the front page but the finished product is so cool I'd rather you watch it first; then you can hit the full post to see all of the "mistakes" that actually made it into the finished product.
Hasselblad Goes To The Ocean

After our half disastrous sailing trip in the Charleston Harbor today, it's only fitting to feature this really inspirational video on sailboat photography. Tim Wallace is an amazing auto and commercial photographer but today he is taking his Hasselblad out on the water. Shooting large boats like this with just natural light is always a challenge but Tim makes it look like a walk in the park. Equipped with helicopters, chase boats, models, and expensive cameras most people probably can't afford, Tim creates some spectacular images in Project Genevieve. I love this shoot because it's both commercial and editorial in nature and features spectacular shots of the sailboat as well as some lifestyle images with models that aren't hard on the eyes. Be sure to check out Tim's full portfolio especially if you like automotive photography.
11 Hour Timelapse From an Air Plane

Kate and Nate over at the Beepshow make all kinds of interesting timelapse projects. I first heard about their videos the other day when I came across this timelapse featured on Gizmodo. Using just a Canon 5D and a 16mm-35mm lens (and well an iphone too), they were able to photograph a full 11 hour flight from San Francisco to Paris. Using long exposure images ranging from 2 to 30 seconds long, they captured all sorts of interesting scenes 30,000 feet up including a spectacular view of the Aurora Borealis. Nate really lucked out having Air France and his fellow passengers allow him to film the whole trip without raising too much of a fuss. For more information about how this was created including the original score created on the ipad, head over to the full post here.
Make Any Camera Shoot Ultra Slow Motion

We have posted about Twixtor before but today I was sent 2 great examples of it being put to use. Instead of simply slowing frames down, Twixtor actually can create as many frames as you like for super smooth ultra slo mo. Obviously nothing beats actually shooting at 1000fps but this program is quite good in most cases. We used it on every frame for the intro of The Wakeboard Studio Shoot. Check out the full post for a second video.
A Time Lapse Shot Of 3 Locations At The Same Time

Everyone likes a good time lapse right? Well Philip Bloom just created one but it has a unique twist. Bloom's video was created with 3 cameras shooting simultaneously outside of his hotel window. He shot with a 5DMII, T2i, and T3i all shooting towards different areas of the landscape at different focal lengths. Check out the full post to see the finished product.
Motorcycle Destruction In Super Slo Mo

Allstate created a pretty clever advertising campaign for motorcycle insurance that showed super slow motion motorcycle wrecks without their riders. Their tag line is "Bikes never crash alone." I think this ad makes a really strong statement without being gory. Check out the BTS below and the finished product in the full post.
Photography Made Easy: Inverse Square Law

There always seems to be two camps when it comes to photography: those who go by feel and those who go by technique. Neither one is necessarily a wrong approach but knowing the technical stuff definitely helps when you are faced with problems or unexpected results. In this video Mark Wallace explains the inverse square law and how it affects light falloff. I'll admit, not having gone to school for photography, it did take me a while to completely grasp this idea when I first started shooting. Once you understand this concept, you should be able to not only light your scenes better but also become more versatile when giving a single light double duty lighting both your subject and the background.
Vanessa Williams In Her Natural State

If you've ever been hired to photograph an environmental portrait or a lifestyle image, most of the time your client is expecting a very natural looking image. Using too much flash will kill the mood and remove any sense of a natural environment. Matthew Jordan is no stranger around here, and we love his videos because he articulates his intentions well and tells why he does the setups he does. In this short and to the point video, Matthew talks about how he photographed a natural lifestyle portrait of Vanessa Williams with her daughter. Knowing how to pull off an image like this is an important tool to have in your bag of tricks and is a big money maker in the editorial and lifestyle market.