Intro to Light Painting with Olympus Trailblazer Jamie MacDonald

Intro to Light Painting with Olympus Trailblazer Jamie MacDonald

Jamie MacDonald is an Olympus Trailblazer who shoots nature and wildlife in the Mid-Michigan area exclusively with the Olympus Four Thirds and Micro Four Thirds camera systems. He is also a contributor for Small Camera Big Picture. Light painted photography is one of his passions and he is currently working on a new light painting tool to make the job easier for beginners. Check out his tips below for creating a successful light painted photo. read more…

Behind The Shot: Apostle Islands Sea Caves

Behind The Shot: Apostle Islands Sea Caves

Behind The Shot is a recurring feature where we dig deeper and find the backstories that accompany amazing photos. Do you have an awesome photo or know of one that we might want to feature? Send us an email!

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Photographer/Filmer/Edior: Alex Fraser

Gear: Canon 5D Mark III, Rokinon 14mm f/2.8, mini-tripod

Settings: ISO 100, f/11, 7-exp HDR

Backstory: The Apostle Islands Sea Caves, along the shore of Lake Superior in northern Wisconsin, are usually only accessible by kayak on calm Summer days. In certain Winter conditions, however (a long cold snap, and a lack of northwest winds), enough ice can form to make them accessible on foot. With the caves open for the first time in five years, some friends and I made the four hour drive from Minneapolis to see the sight.

I shoot with a wide angle lens for 95% of my landscapes, so I was packing light with just my 5DMk3 body and the Rokinon 14mm. The Rokinon is full-manual, which can get a little fiddly up close, but for most landscapes you can just focus at infinity (which for the lens means anything further away than ten feet) with a narrow aperture and fire away. I was shooting 7-exposure HDR (-3 stops to +3) with auto-exposure bracketing in aperture priority mode, so I moved the ISO settings around to match shutter speeds with what I could reasonably hold steady by hand most of the time, but for a few of the shots inside the caves I let the mini-tripod get low and take some longer exposures at ISO 100.

Alex lives in Minneapolis, MN, and shoots mostly sports and landscapes, but he’ll shoot your wedding too if you like his style. He keeps a running gallery of his favorite photos on his 500px page. Check out all of the photos from his Apostle Islands trip.

If you like this photo be sure to share it! Do you have an awesome photo or know of one that we might want to feature? Send us an email!

Serene Travel Photography with the Canon EOS-M

Serene Travel Photography with the Canon EOS-M

The Canon 5D Mark II has long been Tristan Pott’s go-to camera for capturing snippets of Japan and Taiwan, where he has been living for the past several years. To save a little space while still getting to use his normal lenses, Pott picked up a Canon EOS-M, Canon’s first mirrorless interchangeable lens camera. Pott’s serene photographs of scenes from his day trips around both countries shows that a little camera can produce some beautiful visual keepsakes. If you’re trying to save on weight, especially if you are a Canon shooter with some lenses already available to you, the Canon EOS-M with the EF to EF-M adapter just may be the ticket! Find out below why Pott chooses the EOS-M. read more…

Behind The Shot: The Line Between (Video)

Behind The Shot: The Line Between (Video)

Behind The Shot is a recurring feature where we dig deeper and find the backstories that accompany amazing photos. Do you have an awesome photo or know of one that we might want to feature? Send us an email!

Photographer/Filmer/Edior: Long Nguyen

Gear: Canon 5D Mark IICanon 7DCanon 70-200 f2.8Canon 17-40 F4Tonika 10-17 FisheyeCustom SLR M-plate MiniCustom SLR M-Plate ProCustom SLR Glide OneCustom SLR C-LoopF-Stop Gear LokaF-Stop Gear Satori EXPF-Stop Gear Lightroom RollerGlide Cam 2000, Fotopro Carbon Tripod, Manfroto 701 Head, DIY Dolly, Sennheiser MKE 400

Backstory: What’s better than riding your bike? Riding your bike with your friends. Early last year, my friends Christian Wright, Marshall Mullen, and I wanted to shoot a short mountain bike video together. Christian and Marshall had never ridden together, so it was the perfect opportunity to kill two birds with one stone. After exchanging some emails and phone calls, I came up with the idea of filming at Christian’s and Marshall’s homes. They were not only known for their riding abilities, but for their dirt jumps and locations where they lived. To many riders, it’s heaven, and their popularity grew over the years due to that.

Usually with most projects, you will have a partner in crime to help you film and photograph. Over the years, I have always completed projects on my own. It’s no easy task, and The Line Between was the hardest project I have produced to date. It was hard to juggle everyone’s schedule since most of us are always traveling, and I did all the filming, photographing, editing, and distributing.

When going in to the project I knew it was going to be tough, but I knew Christian and Marshall were hard workers. It’s always nice working on a project with others who are just as dedicated and motivated as you are. Both Christian and Marshall had spent weeks preparing their yards for the shoot. They worked from sun up to sun down, and every part of the jumps had to be watered, packed, and perfectly shaped. It really is a work of art. When it was time to start the project, I only had a short 5 days to shoot at Christian’s and Marshall’s homes. When I say short, we could only shoot early in the morning and at golden hour (sunset). That is when the light is at it’s best. Our goals were to film 2 days on the backyard, 2 days on the trails and 1 day as back up.

Thankfully we were able to complete what we needed in 8 days. As hard as it was for me, it was just as hard for the riders. Not only did I need them to ride sections over and over to get the footage, but I needed them to do just as much to get the photographs. By the end of each day, we were exhausted. Overall, I thought the project came out pretty well. We all worked really hard together, and we had a blast producing it together. I felt that we all had the right chemistry, and when dots connect, magic happens. You can’t really ask for much more than that.

Check out all of the photos from this project.

Long Nguyen is an adventure/sports journalist, and goes wherever his camera takes him – for the thrill of an adventure and the action of the sport. Long enjoys photographing many things but his emphasis is in mountain biking. He’s feels lucky to have the opportunities to travel the world and meet new people on all of his journeys. Long thanks his family and friends for all of their support & continues to live for the quest for amazing photography.

Check out more of Long’s work.

If you like this video be sure to share it! Do you have an awesome photo or know of one that we might want to feature? Send us an email!

Microadjustment for Lens and Camera Front/Back Focusing Issues

Microadjustment for Lens and Camera Front/Back Focusing Issues

All lenses and cameras that return to one of our two headquarters are tested and cleaned by our Receiving Team. Sometimes a lens, in particular, will go out on a rental and need to be replaced by another one from our stock because of focusing issues. The majority of these re-tested lenses end up having nothing wrong with them. Here is an explanation for why this happens and how you can dig deeper into the settings of your camera so that you get the most out of not only rental lenses but your own stock of glass as well. read more…

5 Resources to Help Protect Your Photography

5 Resources to Help Protect Your Photography

In an ideal world you will not have to use some of these resources to protect yourself against image theft. However, the use of OPP (other people’s photography) is rampant – sometimes out of malice and sometimes because of a simple misunderstanding or lack of research. Here are 5 things to explore to help you protect your work in the first place and what to do if something unlawful happens to it.

Copyright Your Work

For $55 a batch (as of this writing, updated July 2014), you can have your photographs registered for copyright.
read more…

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