Category

Blog

Step away from the viewfinder. Why chimping is for … chimps.

  Chimping was a term that was made up shortly after the introduction of digital cameras. It’s when you see photographers take a photo then look at the back of the screen, take another shot and look and the back of the screen and keep shooting and looking and shooting and looking. This is often accompanied by “OOs” and “Ahs” and when you start to see photographers doing it over and over they resemble chimps … OO! OO! OO! Are you guilty of this? I don’t really have a problem with people looking like monkeys. The real issue with chimping is when it comes to portrait shoots. The act of looking at the screen and back to the model and back to the screen makes the photographer look like they don’t know what they are doing. Gaining trust and rapport is crucial to a successful portrait shoot. Chimping in front...

6 important lessons my vegetable garden taught me about becoming a better photographer

There is an old Sicilian proverb: “From caca good things grow.” This summer I decided to plant a veggie garden. Leading up to Christmas, my mind and body were completely fried. I’d been working crazy hours finishing my book and online course – plus travelling and lots of photo shoots. I felt like I just needed to recalibrate my system by going back to basics. I wanted to switch off, step away from the computer, put the camera down and chill. There is something incredibly restorative and relaxing about gardening. Firstly it brings back awesome memories of my father who always said that he felt most alive when he was working in his garden. (I feel the same way when I’m standing behind a camera.) There are also many lessons that gardening has taught me. To grow anything from seed takes a great deal of effort and patience. For a...

Quote of the week inspired by Japan

“The world has enough beautiful mountains and meadows, spectacular skies and serene lakes. It has enough lush forests, flowered fields, and sandy beaches. It has plenty of stars and the promise of a new sunrise and sunset every day. What the world needs more of is people to appreciate and enjoy it.” – Michael Josephson  

5 New Year’s photolutions that will help make 2016 your best year as a photographer

Today I sat down to write my 2016 wish list. I do it every year. Often the simple act of writing things I want to achieve somehow makes them more attainable. My lists ranges from the vain and ridiculous like: have a small but meaningful fling with Brad Pitt find a never ending jar of Nutella that doesn’t make my jeans shrink to sing like Adele or Aretha (not fussed which) To the more obtainable: visit the Gili Islands off the coast of Indonesia watch more sunrises and sunsets get my motorbike licence (cue midlife crisis) learn to speak Italian beyond grade 2 level and without the thick Aussie accent. And finally I focus on my photography and what I would like to achieve. If any of these resonate with you, feel free to try them out and see what happens. The quotes that are above each resolution are on...

The one simple photo every photographer must take before they will master their craft

What if I told you that all you need to do to become a great photographer is take one simple photo? It’s the exact same photo that all the greatest photographers in the world today, and throughout history have taken. Uber-celebrity photographer Annie Liebowitz took this shot. So did master landscape photographer Ansel Adams and iconic street photographer Henri Cartier Bresson. So what is this shot and why haven’t you heard of it until now? The shot I’m talking about isn’t a secret only shared by the masters. The shot I’m talking about is the one you will take today. Yep that’s right. Today and what you do with this moment is by far the most powerful thing you will ever do in your photography career. Here is why: When we look at the masters of photography or any master of their field, it’s easy to forget that they all...

Holiday gift ideas for the photographer in your life

  Stay focused while you take a shower with this awesome camera motif shower curtain Nothing says “waterproof” like a camera! But who wouldn’t want to shower with these beauties? Design by Adam Frame Get it on Threadless   Wear your lens on your sleeve with these fab bracelets These cool bracelets come in Nikon and Canon styles.   Turn your favourite Instagram images into ceramic drink coasters Trawl your photographer friend’s Instafeed, grab some of their best pics and get them made into ceramic coasters. Pretty cool. Find them at Coastermatic   Retro camera card holder   This card holder of a retro camera is a great gift idea for the photographer in your life. They can use it for their credit and debit cards, business cards and notes. Find it on Esty Remove sun glare and save your eyes when shooting outside with this awesome DSLR accessory  ...

5 Habits that will improve the quality of your portrait photography

Over the last 25 years, many of the ways I light, shoot and edit my photos have changed and evolved but the following three habits have remained consistent. I continue to use these habits as part of my shooting protocol because I have seen first hand how they work for me. 1. Shoot RAW I know, I know shooting RAW is a complete pain in the ass; it creates extra work, the files are huge and take up valuable space on your hard drive but the results are totally worth it. Shooting in RAW gives you so many more options for post production and will definitely take your photography to the next level. You have far greater control over colour balance, highlight retrieval, tone and shadow details. Got a great shot you overexposed by 2 stops? Shooting in RAW means you can rescue much of the missing data. If you’re not...

Wide or long? Why lens size matters

I photographed all these images as headshots to show how different focal lengths distort facial features. At 24mm the facial features look like a caricature, which is probably why this is the preferred focal length of many photographers who photograph comedians. A focal length of 50mm has the least distortion and is the closest representation of what people really look like, which is why this is the focal length of choice at passport offices. A focal length of 200mm compresses facial features and is the most flattering, making this focal length a favourite amongst portrait and fashion photographers. Ever wondered why you look so bad when Jan at the passport office takes your photo? Aside from the fact that she gives really poor direction, it may also have to do with the fact that she’s working with the most unflattering focal length. Your choice of lens makes a huge difference...

What are the 4 essential items every great photographer should use?

Your eyes, heart, mind and personality. Above: I photographed this sunrise over Sydney Harbour earlier this year. The most common question I’m asked is: “What gear do I need to take the best photos?” Whilst there is no doubt that certain lenses will help you take technically better photos and certain cameras will help you take higher resolution images, I believe that these are not the most essential qualities to taking great photos. Whenever I eat a great meal my first thought isn’t “Hmm, I wonder what kind of oven this was baked in?” or “What knives the chef used to slice the ingredients with?” Great meals are not created because a chef used great tools. Great meals are created because of the way he or she combines the ingredients and prepares and serves them. The best and most expensive tools in the world will not guarantee the best and...

Look Ma, no flash! How to create beautiful portraits using daylight

L-R Michael Veitch, Samara Alana, Chris Sebastian I’ve got a confession to make: I used to think shooting portraits with only daylight was cheating. Seriously. I believed that all great portraits needed to be lit with flash otherwise they were just snapshots. Pros used flash, daylight was for amateurs. All my portrait sessions were lit with flash. Main light, fill light, hair light, background light. I used every tool in my toolkit because the more lights, I used the better the shot. Right? Boy, was I wrong on this one! I was such a gearophile-tech-head that I never even bothered to notice what the daylight was doing. I wanted to manufacture my own light just like McDonalds manufactures its own burgers. My shots were like a Big Mac. They were consistent, reliable, and over-processed. And they left me feeling empty. It wasn’t until one of my flashes misfired that I...
1 25 26 27 28 29 35
×

GET A FREE COPY OF "THE SHOT" - SIGN UP TO GINA'S NEWSLETTER YES PLEASE!