Camera Systems In The Digital Age
Today as camera manufacturers control all aspects of image capture and processing, it's time to reexamine what it means to buy into a system
In the photo press, the “designed for digital” discussion has tended to focus on lens design from the perspective of correcting for issues that are unique to digital sensors. For instance, image sensors, and the filters in front of image sensors, have a tendency to reflect some light back to the lens. To counter this, new coatings have been developed for the filters and the rear lens elements. This kind of innovation is certainly significant, but to think that “designed for digital” ends with new multi-coatings only hints at the real potential of a digital system.
New Tools Of The Trade
The Case For A Light Meter
There's no substitute for getting the right exposure, and there's no better tool for that than a precision handheld meter
It's a simple rule: The exposure has to be correct. That's it. Period. If the exposure is off, no amount of postproduction Photoshop wizardry will bring it back. Of course, we've all heard about the power of a RAW file and how you can massage the RAW processing to fix exposure problems, but really, the whole “fix it down the line” way of thinking is a fallacy. Now, I'm sure someone will read this and shake their head as they think back to an image that was “saved” through RAW processing, but to that I simply say, think of how much better it could have been if you didn't have to save it.
Caesar Lima - Building The Look
For Caesar Lima, the beginning of the basis for his imagery comes down to a simple mantra: Always be creative
It's often said that variety is the spice of life. For L.A.-based commercial shooter Caesar Lima, it's the spice of his photography, too. Lima is as comfortable creating crazy, colorful portraits as he is presenting his simple and elegant black-and-white portfolio. He's a tech-head who loves his toys and tools, but he knows it's the idea that really makes a photograph. And while Lima is sure to flex his creative muscles on every job, he always delivers exactly what his clients ask for. Sort of.
Richard Izui - Motor Drive
With a camera and a "tour bus," Richard Izui takes aim at fast subjects in a deliberate manner
Richard Izui is all about the road. Not only is he expert at photographing cars, but he spends at least half the time away from his suburban Chicago studio on assignment for Playboy and his many advertising and commercial clients. Even Izui's preferred method of travel reveals an appreciation for all things automotive.
Simon Bruty - Athletics
To be counted among the best sports photographers in the world takes more than being in the right place at the right time. Simon Bruty gets images that show the unusual within the usual.
As a society, we're addicted to sports—the Super Bowl, the World Series, NBA basketball, March Madness—the list goes on and on. These are among the biggest moneymakers in entertainment, and for many people, the only thing more inspiring than seeing the events on television is seeing the decisive moments distilled into single, clarifying still photographs. The pages of Sports Illustrated are filled with the finest images from every imaginable contest, and the staff shooters who are assigned to capture the action are the best of the best in the business.
Take control of the contrast in your images with precision using these Photoshop controls
The relationship between highlights and shadows is a critical aspect of any image. Photographers have been trained to become highly sensitized to these relationships. Today, we have more control and greater precision than ever before over these key visual elements using the digital darkroom. In Photoshop, the type of adjustment chosen will provide very specific control. The specificity of an adjustment can be further refined by using a mask. One type of mask yields extreme precision and is derived directly from the light and dark relationships within an image—a luminance or contrast mask.
Digital ISO Speeds
Just Like Film Speeds, But Different
Every photographer is familiar with ISO speeds, those numbers we dial into our exposure meters and cameras so they can lead us—albeit, sometimes somewhat circuitously—to properly exposed images. Most films have ISO speeds, and digital cameras have ISO equivalents. Actually, the digital figures are ISO speeds, too: Like ISO film speeds, they're assigned based on standards issued by the International Organization for Standardization.
Working Within Color Spaces
Myth: Color space has the most important effect on color
Do you use Adobe RGB? Is sRGB a pro format? Should pros really start using ColorMatch RGB? Or is there some other new color space permutation that will give even better results? The problem with this discussion on color space is that it assumes the digital camera has captured the correct colors in the first place and that all you need is the right color space to get the most from those colors. Digital cameras don't quite work that way, unfortunately.
Your Home On The Web, Part 2
If you're interested in getting into e-commerce through your website, there are some good services to check out
In part one of this article (Digital Photo Pro, March/April 2006), we looked at a number of options for creating an online presence for the busy pro photographer. Just being online is enough for many, but more and more pros are discovering that the web is a great way to market their work and generate revenue with online sales. In part two, we take a look at what's involved with setting up an Internet storefront and selling your work online.
Bulk Up Your Book
Producing personal photos on a budget
“I hate this one…I'm over that one…Oh, that one can go.” I was reviewing my portfolio recently and these were the comments I was making to myself about some of the images that were in it. They didn't fit with the styles that were emerging from my current work, and others, well, I was just sick of some of them. I needed to replace those useless pictures with fresh ones that were more indicative of the type of work I wanted to do in order to create a book that displayed a more cohesive style.
Getting Through The Down Time
The unique lifestyle that we have as professional photographers can be challenging when the work isn't flowing in
“What do you do all day?” she asked. She was an upwardly mobile, fabulous clothes-wearing corporate mover who made truckloads more money than I did. She was 23 and calling me out. Her assumption was that a 23-year-old photographer like me plodded through the day pretending to be important and made very little money. To dispel that rumor, I immediately ordered a round of drinks for her and her five friends. Everyone was impressed and, for the moment, I quelled the condescending suits. I quietly excused myself and called my credit card company from the bathroom to make sure I had enough room left to cover the looming tab.