Oxford School of Photography

insights into photography

Monthly Archives: July 2014

7 Tips for Better Environmental Portraits

Shooting portraits can be one of the most fulfilling and frustrating jobs a photographer can take on.  Furthermore, portraits shot on location, that is to say, not in a studio with a background can be even more complicated based on what the client wants to portray. This tutorial from Light Stalking might be of help

Henry Janssen – de snackbar

make of these what you will, they are fun, more here by Henry Janssen

9 Crazy Cross Eye 3D Photography Images and How to Make Them

OK the headline makes it sound….well crazy, but the simple fact is that 3D is now part of our lives in some form or other and will increasingly be part of future viewing experiences, these images and tutorial make it a possibility for all of us to create 3D pictures, do you want to? That is a hard one to answer, if it adds to the image then I guess we would say yes but the reduction of a 3D world to 2D representation has been part of what we as photographers have done for over 150 years, but then we used film for most of that time. Change will come whether it is a good thing the future will tell us when it is too late. Stereoscopic images (3D) are not new, the first invention that allowed 3D imagery was in 1838

The photographer behind these images and tutorial is Neil Creek and this is what he starts with..

“A revolution in photography and videography is coming. The 50’s cliche of the 3D movie and nostalgic childhood 3D viewers like the Viewmaster were ideas ahead of their time. Pretty soon 3D will be everywhere. Thousands of US cinemasare being upgraded to show new 3D movies, new computer display technology is bringing 3D without glasses to the desktop, and a growing enthusiastic community is breathing new life into time-honored 3D photography techniques.

If you haven’t experimented with 3D photography yet, now’s the time.

Anyone with a camera can take 3D photos, and with a bit of practice, most people can learn to see the 3D effect on their monitors without special glasses. I’ve collected here a few examples of some of the cool stuff that photographers are doing with 3D photography today. I hope these images will entertain and inspire you to explore the third dimension in your photography, and put you ahead of the new wave of 3D imagery which will soon flood our culture.”

Eye Witness

Master fill-in flash in 4 easy steps

Fill in flash is the thing that makes professionals able to work in even the harshest light, check out this very useful tutorial on Photoventure

This time of year, many photographers like to shoot outdoor portrait photography, but one of the challenges with this is coping with strong overhead sun and harsh shadows on your subject’s face.

Many a sunny-day portrait has been ruined by dark shadows creeping into the eyes and other facial areas, and fill-flash is good and very convenient solution.

On gloomy days, flash can be equally useful for warming up colour rendition and breathing life into skin tones. The trick is to balance the flash with daylight to obtain natural-looking exposures.

DSLRs and flashguns often make a good stab at this, even in Programme AE mode, but the results can vary. READ MORE HERE

IMG_7704

Best A3+ printer for photographers: 6 top models tested and rated

I have given up printing in the office or at home, the simple economics of it didn’t work out. The printers and paper were manageable but the cost of the inks, particularly when the printer wasn’t used continuously and so needed regular head cleaning, proved uneconomic. If you can justify regular use and enjoy the process this article will advise you as to the best printer to buy

Go large with your photo printing, right on your own desktop. We test 
six leading models to find the best A3 and A3+ printers for photographers.

InkjetPrinterRegular A4 photo printers are compact and convenient but, if you want a picture to frame and hang on the wall, the maximum size of their output leaves a lot to be desired.

By upgrading to an A3+ printer you can generate photo prints of up to 19×13 inches in size. A large print has much more wow factor, while you still have full control over the printing process and retain the relative immediacy of creating prints on your own desktop, without having to upload images and wait for photo prints to be delivered in the post.

Designs differ when it comes to large-format printers. Some use dye-based inks, which typically give the smoothest output on glossy paper.

Pigment-based inks are more robust and a better choice for matte media. Another consideration is whether you only want to make colour prints or if you’re also keen on top quality black-and-white photo output. READ MORE HERE

Layer mask techniques anyone can do: master this vital Photoshop effect

I am not sure this will transforms anyone into a PS genius but layer masks are an essential part of using layers so read this article from Digital Camera World

Knowing how to use a Photoshop layer mask is at the heart of any type of creative image work. In this tutorial we explain the different ways in which you can master them.

What is a layer mask?

Layers and masks set Photoshop apart from many of the alternative image-editing software packages available.

Layers can be explained in simple terms as a stack of images, with the top layer the one that’s visible.

If the opacity of that top image is reduced, or sections of it are erased, the layer beneath will be revealed.

This concept enables us to do a variety of things, such as create composite pictures from several images, or merge shots taken at different exposures to create images with greater dynamic range. READ MORE HERE

Photoshop_layer_makes_photo_editing_PHO29.genius1.refine_fundamentals

 

Duane Michals

D U A N E M I C H A L S
Duane Michals (b. 1932, McKeesport, Pa.) received a BA from the University of Denver in 1953 and worked as a graphic designer until his involvement with photography deepened in the late 1950s. Michals made significant, creative strides in the field of photography during the 1960s. In an era heavily influenced by photojournalism and its aesthetic, Michals manipulated the medium to communicate narratives using a distinctive pictorial technique. The sequences, for which he is widely known, appropriate cinema’s frame-by-frame format. Comprising single prints, each sequence depicts the unfolding of an event or reveals various perspectives on a specific subject. Michals has also incorporated text as a key component in his single and multipart works. Rather than serving a didactic or explanatory function, his handwritten text adds another dimension to the images’ meaning and gives voice to Michals’s singular musings. Balancing fragility and strength, gravity and humor, Michals’s work represents universal themes such as love, desire, memory, death, and immortality.
Over the past five decades, Michals’s work has been exhibited in the United States and abroad. The Museum of Modern Art, New York, hosted Michals’s first solo exhibition (1970), and a year later the George Eastman House, Rochester, NY, mounted another (1971). More recently, he has had one-person shows at the Odakyu Museum, Tokyo (1999), and at the International Center of Photography, New York (2005). In 2008, Michals will celebrate his 50th anniversary as a photographer with a retrospective exhibition at the Thessaloniki Museum of Photography, Greece and the Scavi Scaligeri in Verona, Italy. His work has been included in numerous group shows including, “Cosmos” at the Musée de Beaux-Arts de Montréal (1999), “The Century of the Body: Photoworks 1900-2000” at the Musee de l’Elysee, Lausanne (1999), “From Camouflage to Free Style” at the Musée d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris (1999), and “The Ecstasy of Things” at the Fotomuseum Winterthur, Switzerland.
In recognition of his contributions to photography, Michals has been honored with a CAPS Grant (1975), a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship (1976), the International Center of Photography Infinity Award for Art (1989), the Foto España International Award (2001), and an Honorary Doctorate of Fine Arts from Montserrat College of Art, Beverly, Mass.(2005). Michals’s work belongs to numerous permanent collections in the U.S. and abroad, including the Israel Museum, Jerusalem; the J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles; the Metropolitan
Museum of Art, New York; the Moderna Museet, Stockholm; the Museum of Modern Art, New York; the National Museum of Modern Art, Kyoto; and the Philadelphia Museum of Art. Michals’s archive is housed at the Carnegie Museum of Art, Pittsburgh. Monographs of Michals’s work include Homage to Cavafy (1978); Nature of Desire (1989); Duane Michals: Now Becoming Then (1990); Salute, Walt Whitman (1996); The Essential Duane Michals (1997); Questions Without Answers (2001); The House I Once Called Home (2003) and Foto Follies / How Photography Lost Its Virginity on the Way to the Bank (2006). Forthcoming publications include 50 (Admira Photography, June 2008); a collection of Michals’s writing (Delpire Editeur, Fall 2008); and his Japaneseinspired, color photographs (Steidl, Fall 2008).
Michals lives and works in New York City.

“Photography deals exquisitely with appearances, but nothing is what it appears to be”. – Duane Michals – 1966

“I think photographs should be provocative and not tell you what you already know. It takes no great powers or magic to reproduce somebody’s face in a photograph. The magic is in seeing people in new ways”. – Duane Michals

“The best part of us is not what we see, it’s what we feel. We are what we feel. We are not what we look at . . .. We’re not our eyeballs, we’re our mind. People believe their eyeballs and they’re totally wrong . . .. That’s why I consider most photographs extremely boring–just like Muzak, inoffensive, charming, another waterfall, another sunset. This time, colors have been added to protect the innocent. It’s just boring. But that whole arena of one’s experience–grief, loneliness–how do you photograph lust? I mean, how do you deal with these things? This is what you are, not what you see. It’s all sitting up here. I could do all my work sitting in my room. I don’t have to go anywhere”. – Duane Michals
“If I was concerned about being accepted, I would have been doing Ansel Adams lookalikes, because that was easily accepted. Everything I did was never accepted…but luckily for me, my interest in the subject and my passion for the subject took me to the point that I wasn’t wounded by that, and eventually, people came around to me.” – Duane Michals
“And in not learning the rules, I was free. I always say, you’re either defined by the medium or you redefine the medium in terms of your needs”. – Duane Michals

The Exposure Triangle and all that

I have posted about this before but as it is the core of what we do as photographers I feel it is worth giving it another airing. Exposure is the gathering in of the correct quantity of light so that our images are neither too light or too dark. Our controls are the aperture and the shutter plus the ISO, these work in conjunction with the light meter in the camera. Understanding this relationship and the impact ut has on your images is fundamental to being a photographer. This article from Digital Photo School is pretty good at explaining this so have a look. If you would like to understand more you might be interested in our DSLR courses or one of our 1 Day DSLR Workshops

World Cup 2014: 25 of the best photos from Brazil

From The Guardian: Our sports picture editor rounds up the highlights from the tournament in Brazil and explains why these photographs stood out from the 250,000 shots we’ve received over the past month
• Check out 25 of the best World Cup photos of all time

Round of 16 - Netherlands vs Mexico

Arjen Robben’s histrionics against Mexico in their last-16 encounter would have you believe he’s been whacked around the back of the head with a shovel. Behind him, Rafael Márquez pleads his innocence, but replays showed there was some contact between the two players. Enough for a penalty? Perhaps not. Either way, Robben’s swan-dive is caught nicely in this photograph