Try these creative adjustments using Photoshop, Lightroom and third-party software programs for striking black-and-white images
Text & Photography By Tom Bol
Ballet dancer in Cuba.
Photography began with black-and-white images and the darkroom process, where images came to life. Today, photographers have many more choices. Some photographers still shoot black-and-white film and develop in the wet darkroom. But for most photographers, we capture in digital color and decide later if we want to convert to black-and-white....
A vintage Cooke Optics lens
Cooke Optics has been making lenses for 130 years, and their coatings haven’t changed much since the ’60s—that’s what contributes to the Cooke Look cinematographers want on their digital bodies, like RED and ARRI.
The coatings are like pixie dust and seen here (decades of them built up) on a flange. The flange holds...
Manufacturers are responding to ever more capable cameras with cinema lenses, and Byron tries out two of them
“The Initial Mystery that attends any journey is: how did the traveler reach his starting point in the first place?” — Louise Bogan
For this journey I’m on in London, it’s an initial mystery of shooting with cine lenses, but let’s back up to the starting point. If you’ve never heard of a cine lens, that’s shorthand for cinema, and what’s...
Why the Leica M Monochrom has this photographer reacquainting himself with black-and-white photography
To me, shooting in black-and-white is like listening to opera—I have to be in the right mood and frame of mind. Earlier this year, that mood happened at WPPI, a wedding trade show in Las Vegas. I had arranged a demo Leica from their booth and, well, the lighting at trade shows is always terrible, so I asked for the M Monochrom, then assigned myself...
On assignment with Jim Cornfield, as he uses a subject’s history to tell the story of an honored vet and the airplane that saved his life
Text & Photography By Jim Cornfield
For a recent photo assignment, Jim Cornfield chose to create an environmental portrait of Air Force Capt. Kenneth Curry, telling a story in images by connecting the pilot to his former military experience.
The environmental portrait is one of photography’s simpler ideas: An image of a subject that includes his or her external life—some place or...
Faithfully and creatively reproducing your images with careful post-production techniques can yield huge dividends
Text & Photography By Brian Matiash
The left half of this frame shows the original photo, as taken by my camera. I had a 6-stop ND filter applied, which not only allowed me to get this long exposure, it also applied a visible blue tint. The right half is the exact same photo except I applied a custom white balance that targeted the gray part of the rushing water. The improvement is quite...
Using shapes, lines, colors, tones and lighting to create visually interesting and painterly photos of the city
Scene from a typical spring night in NYC. When considering geometries, note that the architect’s vision of the building is ignored because I’m instead concerned with the visual activity around it.
In this photo taken during the Sony a9 launch of 30 photographers crowded around the long jump at The Armory, notice what David J. Schloss is doing—he’s...
Using speedlights to tell a more compelling visual story
Text & Photography By Tom Bol
Moai Statue At Sunset. Nikon D3, 24-70mm ƒ/2.8 lens, shot at 1/50 sec. at ƒ/8, Nikon SB-800 used off-camera to light the statue.
I have traveled 4,625 miles to get this image. I’m stumbling through the volcanic landscape in the murky predawn darkness trying to find the Moai statues. The salty breeze and crashing surf remind me of early-morning shoots...
Just as this issue was going to press, Pokémon GO swept the country. Overnight it seemed like everyone was looking face-down at their phones, flicking pretend balls at pretend creatures. Thanks to the intelligent use of a smartphone’s camera, developer Niantic is able to superimpose the various wild Pokémon in a video stream of the real world, a...
A light meter is one of the most important tools in a photographers' arsenal, and you probably don't own one.
Photography is about capturing light, which is why it’s confusing that many photographers don’t own a light meter. After all, if we’re trying to capture light accurately and/or creatively, then we need to know how much light there is and where it’s coming from.
In this conversation at the Seikonic booth at the 2016 Photokina...
The latest iteration of DxO’s RAW Raw converter and image processing software, OpticsPro 11, offers a couple of new features that really piqued our interest.
DxO is best known for DxOMark.com, a website that publishes a vast database of quantitative measurements for thousands of lenses and cameras. That information is not gathered for consumer information but to power its image-editing software. The DxO suite of tools uses the analysis of the imaging characteristics of camera equipment to correct any inherent...