BorrowLenses Education: Featured Photographer Ian Plant

BorrowLenses Education: Featured Photographer Ian Plant

Technique, knowledge, inspiration – gain it all from seasoned photographers with years of experience and many tips to share with both burgeoning photographers and pros looking to gain a new perspective. Visit our entire collection of interviews, which are full of amazing images and valuable advice. Ian Plant is a world-renowned professional nature photographer, writer, and adventurer who has been photographing the natural world for almost twenty years. Plant is a frequent contributor and blogger for Outdoor Photographer Magazine, a Contributing Editor to Popular Photography Magazine, and a monthly columnist for Landscape Photography Magazine. He is also is the photographer/author of several dozen print and electronic-format nature photography books and his work has appeared in a number of other books, calendars, magazines, and advertising campaigns worldwide. BL: What is your photographic specialty and how did you become interested in it? Plant: I specialize in landscape and wildlife photography. I’ve always been interested in the outdoors and have been doing hiking, backpacking, rock-climbing, kayaking – you name it – since I was a kid. One day, almost twenty years ago, I decided to buy a camera to bring along with me to capture all of the natural beauty I was seeing on my outdoor adventures. I was instantly hooked! I’ve had many hobbies over the years which I got really serious about for a short period of time before getting bored and moving on to the next activity, but photography was different – it blossomed from a hobby into a passion, and eventually into a full-time career. I left my “real” job almost 10 years ago and I’ve never looked back! BL: How long have you been...
BorrowLenses Education: Featured Photographer Andy Lim

BorrowLenses Education: Featured Photographer Andy Lim

Technique, knowledge, inspiration – gain it all from seasoned photographers with years of experience and many tips to share with both burgeoning photographers and pros looking to gain a new perspective. Visit our entire collection of interviews, which are full of amazing images and valuable advice. Andy Lim got started in photography after leaving design college in 1992 and has given several public talks on the subject of photography. His work has since been published worldwide. Andy conducts SimpleSLR hands-on digital photography workshops from beginners to advanced levels. He also writes useful and practical digital photography tips on his GoodPhotography.info website. Andy Lim is an accomplished professional wedding photographer. His brand, Emotion in Pictures, attracts clients worldwide with his unique flavor of wedding and portrait photography. BL: What is your photographic specialty and how did you become interested in it? Lim: Wedding photography. While I was working as a creative director doing design and advertising, I started taking wedding pictures on a part-time basis. Eventually I went full-time in 2007 and never looked back. BL: How long have you been teaching and/or writing about photography and how would you describe your teaching/writing style? Lim: I have been running photography workshops since 2006, focusing mainly on beginners because that’s the area with the biggest need. Now I also conduct lighting workshops for more advanced photographers. My teaching style is very practical because I believe that in order to learn photography you need to be hands-on. My eBook guides focus on helping readers understand the technical aspects first and then applying the knowledge in a typical shooting situation and illustrating my point...
BorrowLenses Education: Featured Photographer Troy Paiva

BorrowLenses Education: Featured Photographer Troy Paiva

Technique, knowledge, inspiration – gain it all from seasoned photographers with years of experience and many tips to share with both burgeoning photographers and pros looking to gain a new perspective. Visit our entire collection of interviews, which are full of amazing images and valuable advice. Troy Paiva, AKA Lost America, has been creating light painted night photography in abandoned locations and junkyards since 1989. His documentarian work examines the evolution, and eventual abandonment, of the communities, infrastructure, and social iconography that spawned during America’s 20th century expansion into the cities and deserts of the West. His imagery has appeared in print in over a dozen countries, including three Stephen King book covers, American Photographer, Air & Space Magazine, Hot Rod Magazine, and CNN Online. Troy’s work has appeared in museums and galleries in New York, Los Angeles, Sweden, and San Francisco. In 2010 and 2011, he appeared as a guest judge on the Singapore reality TV show The Big Shot. Troy teaches light painting/night painting workshops several times a year in a high desert junkyard filled with decaying movie prop vehicles. His low cost, high impact lighting techniques have been adopted by amateurs and professionals around the world. BL: What is your photographic specialty and how did you become interested in it? Paiva: I’m a night photographer and light painter and general lighting guru.  I picked up the basics of the techniques in the days of film, back in 1989, and forged my own techniques for working with flashlights (torches) during time-exposures through the ’90s and into the 21st century.  It’s been amazing to see the popularity of these...
Powerful Portrait Inspiration With Steve McCurry’s iPad App

Powerful Portrait Inspiration With Steve McCurry’s iPad App

Steve McCurry is one of the most prolific photographers alive today. His photograph for National Geographic’s June 1985 cover of Sharbat Gula (also know as the “Afghan Girl”) is one of the most recognizable portraits in history, and his imagery has graced NatGeo’s pages many, many times since. McCurry has repeatedly proven himself an absolute master of the portrait. His street portraiture, especially, carries tremendous impact. He has an uncanny ability to capture his subjects’ essence, distilling it in a split-second into an image that can range from haunting to exciting and everything in-between. Now, McCurry has taken 200 of his best portraits and rolled them into an iPad app. Along with a 20+ minute introductory video, the app shows his portraits, where they were taken, and a caption with some details. Based on that description, you might be thinking, “What, no backstory? No technique tips? No metadata for the images?” Well, no. And thank goodness for it. First, many were taken with film cameras, so adding metadata would be out of the question. Moreover, the caption is all the backstory these images need; they speak reams and volumes on their own. The simplicity and elegance of the app is actually kinda impressive. In the current marketplace, where photographers are gravitating towards apps in an increasing fashion – McCurry isn’t the first NatGeo photographer to release a portfolio on the iPad – basic things like user experience and sensible interface design often get left by the wayside. So to see a well-designed app like this one is a true pleasure. That’s not to say that the app is a glorified...
Notable Storytellers – Sara Lando

Notable Storytellers – Sara Lando

Welcome to Notable Storytellers, a feature where we point you to some of the best visual storytellers around, from photographers and videographers to VFX and graphic artists. Sara Lando is an Italian photographer who first came to my attention through her work on David Hobby’s Strobist blog. An occasional contributor there, Sara is a commercial photographer based in Milan, Italy. I devour Strobist.com with regularity, and remember seeing Sara introduced as the European correspondent last year. I also remember reading an article by her on photographer Christoph Martin Schmidt. Her recent series of articles, however, weren’t about another photographer, or even a technique – not necessarily, anyway. These were more of an “approach philosophy” piece. I quote David Hobby: Picture a tiny Italian woman gesturing continuously as she uncorks a full brain dump (from a very, very creative mind) on all of the little things that many people never think of when photographing others. As I was listening I kept thinking, “Someone should be writing this stuff down RIGHT NOW.“ I read the article. Then read it again. It was, I realized, pretty damn good. And insightful. So I clicked through to her portfolio, and got a really wide grin on my face. I love finding photographers whose work inspires me. It used to make me groan at the distance I have to cover to get that good, but now it just drives me. Sara’s work is definitely, without a doubt, inspiring. What fascinated me about Sara’s portfolio is the range she covers. Not in terms of subject matter — she sticks mostly to people — but in terms of...
Flashing Above San Francisco

Flashing Above San Francisco

Every so often, we get to talk about our friends, whether they’re doing something awesome in front of a lens, or behind the camera. This time around, it’s both. One of our favorite all-round good guys and awesome photographers, Syl Arena, swung through San Francisco a while back and hung out with our very own Alex Huff. Alex has an awesome (yeah, I’m jealous) view of San Francisco from her balcony, and Syl used the opportunity to do a shoot with the new Canon 600EX-RT flashes and the ST-E3 transmitter. Using the 600EX-RT, Syl balanced the ambient light with flash, resulting in a very cool image. The complete writeup, with breakdown and before/after shots, is on Syl’s blog. Syl also has a piece up about a personal project he did recently, called “The Faces of American Coal.” It’s one of those deeply personal series of images that will resonate with you. They’re up close, intense, and searching. Of course, Syl being the consumate teacher, has also broken down his process for taking the images too, so we get the added bonus of seeing what goes into a project like this. Maine-area folks, a quick heads-up: Syl will be at the Maine Media Workshops, presenting on Canon Speedlites from Aug 19-Aug 25. If you’re around and have never been to one of Syl’s workshops, they’re not to be missed. Head up there and learn about Canon Speedlites from a photographer who’s often cited as knowing as much about Canon Speedlites as many Canon...