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Alex Cooke
Cleveland, OH

Articles written by Alex Cooke

A Beginner's Three-Step Guide to Creating a Landscape Photo

Starting in any new genre of photography can be daunting. Each comes with its own challenges, and landscape photography is no different. If you are a beginner landscape photographer and looking to get started with it, check out this helpful video tutorial that will give you a basic three-step process for creating images.

How to Tell Stories With Your Photos

If you look at the work of a lot of the best photographers, their images go beyond technical quality and novel creativity by drawing you in with the stories they tell. The concept of storytelling in photography is a bit nebulous, however. So, how do you do it? This excellent video essay features a seasoned photographer talking through his thought process in creating such a photo.

How to Read an MTF Chart and Why They Are Useful for Photographers

If you have ever looked at the product page for a lens, you may have noticed some strange graphs called MTF charts. Though they look a bit unusual, they are not particularly hard to read once you know what data they convey, and they can tell you a lot of useful information in a short amount of time. This helpful video will show you how they work.

How to Shoot Tethered

Most photographers' workflows consist of taking the photos, removing the memory card, putting it in a reader, and importing their images. There is nothing wrong with that, but shooting tethered can be a real boon to your workflow if you are working in a studio, and this excellent video tutorial will show you how to do it.

10 Tips to Improve Your Wildlife Images

Capturing good wildlife images can be a thrill, but it takes a lot of good technique, knowledge of how animals behave, and more. If you have been struggling with your own images a bit, this excellent video tutorial will give you 10 helpful tips that will help you take your photos to the next level.

7 Helpful Tips to Improve Your Landscape Photos

Creating a successful landscape photo takes the confluence of a wide range of factors, such as technique behind the camera, creative vision, understanding of the elements, and post-processing capabilities. If you are looking to improve your own photos, this helpful video tutorial features seven tips that should get you to where you want to go.

How Good Is This Impressively Affordable 35mm Lens?

A quality 35mm lens with a reasonably wide maximum aperture is useful for a huge range of applications in both photo and video, but on the other hand, such lenses can often be rather expensive. Samyang's AF 35mm f/1.8 FE sits well below those prices, however, currently retailing for only $349. Can it compete with more expensive options? This great video review takes a look at its image quality and performance.

The Hidden Power of Lightroom's Targeted Adjustment Tool

Lightroom is often more powerful and capable than it appears on the surface, and one such example of that is the Targeted Adjustment Tool, which can make your workflow a lot more efficient and precise adjustments far more efficient. This helpful video tutorial will show you the ins and outs of the Targeted Adjustment Tool and why it is so useful for a range of applications.

How to Get Ready for Fall Photography

We are nearing the end of summer, and as fall approaches, there will be numerous opportunities to capture vivid swaths of color as the leaves change. This excellent video tutorial features a seasoned landscape photographer discussing his process of scouting and planning autumn photography along with some helpful composition tips.

Why So Many People Think This Famous Photo Is Fake

Perhaps no historical event is rifer with conspiracy theories than the assassination of President John Kennedy. One of the key pieces of evidence conspiracy theorists point to is a seemingly strange photo of assassin Lee Harvey Oswald that, if real, is tremendously incriminating. This fascinating video takes a look at the photo and why so many people think it is fake and provides a modern analysis of its authenticity.

An Interview With Richard Drew, Photographer of 'Falling Man'

We are approaching the 20th anniversary of September 11th. One of the most iconic images to emerge from that terrible day was Richard Drew's "Falling Man," which captured a man who had either jumped or fallen from the North Tower as the intense fires pushed those trapped in the upper floors to make a desperate decision. This interview speaks with Richard Drew, the photographer who captured the image.

How Good Is the Unique Canon RF 800mm f/11 IS STM Lens?

The Canon RF 800mm f/11 IS STM is one of the most unique lenses released in a long time, offering an extremely long focal length at an impressively affordable price with the caveat of an unusually narrow and fixed aperture. How does it perform in the real world? This great video review takes a close look at the lens.

What Is Dynamic Range and Why Do Photographers Care About It?

Dynamic range is one of the most fundamental properties of a camera sensor and one of the leading specs photographers are concerned about these days. What is it, though, and why is it so important? This great video tutorial will introduce you to the concept and show you its practical consequences on your images.

Why a Seasoned Landscape Photographer Bought a 150-600mm Lens

When you think of focal lengths in landscape photography, lenses like a 24mm or 16-35mm probably come to mind, and for good reason, as wide angle lenses help to capture those beautiful scenes in one frame. That being said, longer focal lengths have their place too, and this excellent video features a seasoned landscape photography discussing just why he bought such a lens for his own work.

Can a $500 Medium Format Zoom Lens Produce Worthwhile Images?

It is no secret that Fuji has been rewriting the paradigm of camera cost by bringing medium format cameras to the market at prices that compete with full frame options, but now, they are doing the same with medium format lenses, offering a zoom that costs just $500 when purchased as part of a kit with the new GFX 50S II. Is it any good? This great video review takes a first look.

5 Retouching Mistakes Portrait Photographers Make

It is exceedingly rare that you will take a portrait that does not need some degree of retouching, and as such, there are common post-processing mistakes you should be aware of before you start your edits. This helpful video tutorial will show you five common mistakes portrait photographers make when retouching images and how you can avoid or fix them.

Drone Explodes in Alligator's Mouth After It Snatches It Out of the Sky

In the latest installment of social media "influencers" ruining everything, an alligator was likely severely harmed after a TikTok influencer harassed it with a drone to the point that the animal literally jumped out of the water to snatch the device, causing the drone's battery to explode in its mouth.

7 Over-Editing Mistakes Photographers Make and How to Avoid Them

Going too far with an edit is something we have all been guilty of at some point, and it is something for which the temptation never quite disappears. Here are seven signs you have taken that edit of your landscape image from refined to gaudy and what you can do to fix or avoid the issue.

Learn How This Dramatic Portrait Was Shot With Just One Light and a Reflector

No doubt, when you are first learning about artificial lighting, it can feel very foreign and difficult to master, particularly when it seems like pros are using complex multi-light setups for all their shots. However, you might be surprised by how much you can accomplish with one light, a reflector, and strong knowledge of the fundamentals of lighting. This excellent video tutorial will show you how just such a shot was created and the process the photographer went through to create the final image.

What Kind of Landscape Photos Can You Shoot on a Cloudless Day?

For landscape photographers, a sunny day with no clouds in the sky is kind of boring and does not make for particularly interesting photos. On the other hand, that does not mean you should just pack up your bag and head back home if you encounter such a day. This excellent video tutorial follows a landscape photographer as he demonstrates what you can shoot on such days.