3 Back to School Portrait Styles: Which One is Right for You?

3 Back to School Portrait Styles: Which One is Right for You?

Start studying because the kids are heading back to school, which means you’ll have to act fast to get the first-day-of-school shot you want. As part of this preparation, you need to decide which style is right for your family or the family you’re photographing for. Here’s what you need to know to ace these 3 school-themed shoots.

4th of July Shooting Tips for Beginners

4th of July Shooting Tips for Beginners

For most photo enthusiasts, 4th of July is more than a holiday – it is a day to practice some challenging shooting situations beyond just capturing fireworks. Here are 5 tips/shooting ideas for beginners (and reminders for seasoned shooters) that will help advance your skills over 4th of July. 4th of July Shooting Tips for Beginners 1. Show Parade Action with Slow Shutter Speeds 2. Light Write with Sparklers 3. Take Advantage of Selective Focusing 4. Shoot into the Sun 5. Capture Context During a Fireworks Show Show Parade Action with Slow Shutter Speeds Our instinct is to freeze moving objects but then they look stationary and the image feels flat as a result. Many parade photos end up looking boring for this reason. Practice slowing down your shutter speed to something longer than 1/100th of a second (experiment). If you’re out in the bright sun, you will need to increase your aperture to compensate and prevent extreme overexposure. See this section of our sports post for more details on panning settings. Light Write with Sparklers This is a fun activity that is explained in full in this post and this post but here are the quick basics for light writing: • Put your camera on a tripod. • Put your camera in “bulb” mode. This will keep the shutter open for as long as you want. If you do not have bulb mode, start with an exposure that is 30 seconds long (available on most cameras, including point and shoots). Below is an example of the bulb mode setting on a DSLR body and a mirrorless body. • Put your lens...
Ivan Makarov on Being a Dad and a Photographer

Ivan Makarov on Being a Dad and a Photographer

Being the family photographer is both a blessing and a curse – you’re afforded the rare opportunity to constantly preserve memories while also trying to balance that with experiencing them first-hand. Ivan Makarov understands this well. As a father of four, Makarov has been documenting his children’s lives since the moments they were born: “I shoot them wherever they are, doing whatever they’d like to do. My end goal is to document their childhood, as it starts and as they turn into teenagers and then adults.” In celebration of Father’s Day, we’re sharing some of our favorite family images from Makarov’s collection and providing 5 of his dad photographer tips that fellow shooters of all backgrounds can appreciate. Makarov’s 5 Tips: Tip #1: In a rut? Try switching to a new camera system. These days I shoot with Leica M and mostly with 35mm and 50mm lenses. I was a Nikon guy ever since I started in photography almost 10 years ago but I made the transition to rangefinder photography a couple of years ago when I was feeling stuck and uninspired with the process and with what I was producing. Leica gave me a new method of shooting because it’s quite different to shoot with the rangefinder and it also reignited my creativity to a point where I now can’t stop shooting! It’s been this way ever since I got the Leica. The original idea was to get a smaller camera that I can carry with me alongside my kids. It had a very surprising and positive effect on my creativity. I don’t think it matters all too much...