A very common source of confusion for nature photographers is how to properly calibrate a monitor.
Glenn has provided a short video tutorial on how he calibrates his monitor. No matter what calibration system you use, you'll find this video helpful. If you don't calibrate yet, this video will clear up some of the mystery!
You can see useful Color Management tools in the store here.
Learn more about Glenn, check out his images, books and workshops here.
I love watching the reruns of the TV hit comedy sitcoms from the past on TBS, and my favorite is the “Seinfeld” show. If you are a fan of that show, you may have seen the episode titled “The Bubble Boy” which was about a young man that had to live in a plastic bubble, which doesn’t sound funny, but it was. When I captured this image it reminded me of that show.
I shot this at the edge of a river which had a small waterfall. The crashing water of the falls produced bubbles which flowed to the edge were I was standing. I thought that the bubbles would make an interesting abstract image, so I set-up my camera. I needed a fast shutter speed to stop the quick movement of the bubbles as they past by, and at that time the the highest ISO I could shoot with my Fuji S3 camera and produce a decent noise free image was at ISO1600, so that’s where I set it. I set the f/stop at 3.5 which is wide open on my 180mm macro to also help increase the shutter speed. The light was an overcast day and I got the shutter speed up around 1000th of a second.
I shot about 40 images, and out of all the images this was the only one that worked without any softness in the details from the quick swirling movement of the bubbles. You see me and the legs of the tripod, and the trees towering above me. It was shot in the early spring and the trees were bare as they had not started to bud yet. Very cool stuff, try it next time you’re near some waterfalls.
You can visit Mike's blog and learn about his workshops here: Tiny Landscapes
Mike's eBooks are available in the OPG store here: Mike Moats
PDN has named the Induro Gimbal GHB2 the Tripod Head of the Year. Their story leads off with “If you like shooting wildlife but feel constrained by traditional tripod heads, discover Induro’s latest line of gimbals and liberate yourself.”
You can read PDN's review from earlier this year after the break. Thanks, PDN!
I’ve really fallen in love my iPad; so much in fact that I broke down and bought an Apple MacBook (but that’s another story). There are so many new applications being released for the iPad that it’s hard to stay on top of them all, but here are a few of my favorites.
Here’s a glimpse into some some of my favorite iPad apps:
1. FolioBook— if you want to create a beautiful portfolio of your work, then look no further. This application is great. It took me only a few minutes and I had a super slick portfolio that I can now show off to friends or clients.
2. Photogene– I’ve long had this application on my iPhone, but it’s 10X better on the iPad. This program really allows you to do quite a bit of editing. Sure, I would love to see a Lightroom app, but until then Photogene works just fine.
3. Easy Release– If you need a model release on the fly then this is the application for you. I’ve had this loaded on my iPhone for quite some time, but the iPad version is much easier to work with.
4. Photo fx Ultra– One of my biggest complaints with the iPad is the ability to print to a wireless printer. This application does a decent job of allowing me to do just that…my only complaint is that it cost $8.00. (If anyone from Apple is reading this, get us a free print app!)
5. LightTrac– ever wonder what the angle of the sun will be at any given time of the day at any given location? This makes planning for sunset/sunrise by locations a breeze. I almost feel like I’m cheating when I use it.
6. PS Express– Photoshop Express is a great iPad app and the best part–it’s FREE!
7. Google Earth–An essential tool for researching any area that I’m traveling to.
All of us at OPG would like to welcome Guy Tal to the blog and to the store. Guy has a new e-book in the store: Creative Landscape Photography. This e-book is full of stunning images, discourses on the philosophy of landscape photography, and creative exercises that will unlock your potential and take your images to the next level.
Guy will also be posting on the blog from time to time, giving us his unique perspectives and viewpoints.
Guy hones his craft in Torrey, Utah, in the heart of a unique and scenic desert region known as the Colorado Plateau. He chooses nature photography as a way of capturing and sharing the beauty, power, and fragility of wild places and the life that inhabits them. Guy migrated from Israel in his twenties and transitioned his life as well–from soldier and student, to naturalist, photographer and writer.
Guy has lived in the American West for 15 years and also has a Fine Art Print gallery in Torrey.
You can learn more about Guy, view his images and check out his gallery here: Guy Tal
There's a new kid in town in the cold shoe department! From the same awesome guys that came up with the Orbis Ring Flash adapter, comes the all new Frio Universal Cold Shoe Adapter. This cool gadget will connect any hotshoe flash to any 1/4-20 threaded stud and it connects very securely.
The Frio is made of a hard, durable plastic, is very light weight, and is smaller than the standard plastic shoe that comes with most flashes. This little guy is so small that you can literally pack 10 of these in any bag and take up little to no space.
But does it work, you say?
Let's check it out…
As stated above, the Frio simply screws on to any 1/4-20 threaded stud (which is pretty much standard on just about all light stands, tripods and just about anything else you can attach a flash to), and the flash hotshoe just slides right in.
The Frio has a "dual locking" mechanism in that there is a plastic tab that you have to push down to get the flash in the shoe, then it has a slot that picks up the locking pin mechanism on just about every hotshoe flash.
I used mine on an umbrella swivel adapter (as I do with all my shoe mounts). Because the Frio has a metal threaded insert and not a plastic one, you get a very secure fit to your stud mount. Also, you can wrench it down pretty well without fear of stripping the threads …not so with plastic threading.
You can see in the photo below that the Frio is approximately half the size of the standard plastic cold shoe that comes with your flash.
Just to test the Frio's actual strength out, I turned my flash over to a 90 degree angle. Not only did it not even budge, I
Now that winter has arrived here in southeast Michigan I’m mostly shooting indoors. Dealing with varying light conditions can be tough without artificial lighting. I mainly shoot in two location of my house, near a wall at the back of the house, or in the front foyer where a huge window on the second level floods the stairway with natural light. Whether I shoot at the back of the house or front depends on the time of day and where the strongest light is entering the home.
I have always preferred natural light for my images without the use of flash, and have been successful the majority of the time working in this manner. On most days I do get enough natural light through these windows that gives me enough light to pull off my shots. But there are those heavy overcast days when it’s just to dark in the house and tough to shoot. I tried flash in the past and found it frustrating at time and didn’t care for the look, even through I have seen photographers that use flash that get good results. It was just not for me.
Recently I’ve seen these LED light boxes that are sold as a constant light source used for shooting video with DSLR cameras. They attach in your camera’s hotshoe where the flash would be, and I thought this would be a great lighting tool for the macro photographer. I don’t use it attached to the camera, but rather use it by hand holding it where I what the light to hit the subject. Because the subjects we shoot are small this light works perfectly.