Taste And Preference

In my fashion photography workshop last weekend I was surprised to see my students diverse in terms of camera brand. I normally just see domination with Canon but this time, no Nikon, it was an equal footing with Canon and Fujifilm. Not just the ordinary camera but we are talking about Canon’s 1DX and Fujifilm’s GFX.

I was so glad I didn’t bring a camera. Firstly, mine has no match with their camera and secondly, I can always grab their camera to do a demo. It was a very productive two days since the level of interest of the students was all worth it. I cannot forget another workshop I did when a student was holding a 5DMk4 with a 50mm 1.8 lens. My heart just broke at that very moment.

I used a now disregarded 5DmkII with 50mm 1.4 lens in this shot. There’s a lot of people selling their 5DmkII with just a third on how much they bought it for. Brand and new technology will make shooting easier but not photography as an art.

I’ve been a Canon fanatic ever since but I also get to experience using almost all brands during workshops and at times when I’m doing a review of other brands. There were many times, I’d trade off all my camera to shift to another brand but by the time I’m back and shooting with my camera again, I’m reminded again why I’m shooting with my brand of camera. Continue reading “Taste And Preference” »

Learn From Test Shoot

In this photo, I’m trying to shoot Stephanie with a look that I haven’t seen from her previous shots. It’s a challenge for both the model and me plus it’s our first time working together. I learned a lot creatively from this shoot. (model: Stephanie Fontanel of Stacy’s Model Management)

I can still remember vividly the first few test shoots I did. It was horrible and embarrassing when thinking about it now. But when you try to look back at your beginnings, it will also shows how much you’ve progressed. We call it fun shoot back then, I didn’t really know the terminology used in the industry. It was only in the later part while working with wider players involved in the industry that I was corrected.

Test shoot is the best way for you to learn in a lot of ways. It is a complete learning experience that cannot be learned through workshops or youtube university. The idea is to simulate the shooting experience so when the actual commissioned job rolls in, you can handle the problems like a pro. Continue reading “Learn From Test Shoot” »

Color Management For Photographers

Colors are often disregarded or misunderstood. If you plan to keep your photos to yourself and have no plans of printing it, submitting it to a client or maybe post it in social media, then you don’t have to bother understanding color management. When color is shared, viewed in different display or reproduced to different media, then it must be managed.

Colors are common for us to see everyday but what we don’t see is how they can easily deviate and you would question its complex behaviour because they are suppose to be simple and straightforward. I’ve been dealing with color since the mid 90s and up until now, I still encounter a lot of people working with colors who has no idea what they are dealing with.

Is the red in prints and the one in the actual fabric the same? If you’re buying the gown online, can you trust your monitor colors? Colors are not as simple as you see it.

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Photography Journey

Here’s one of my first captures back 2011. We were shooting outdoor with off camera speedlights. (Model: Shing Villarias)

Recently I attended a wedding of a colleague in Sacred Heart church and after the ceremony as I congratulated the newly wed, the couple told me that the priest told them that one of your ninongs is a really good photographer. He told them that he reads my article in SunStar Weekend.

In another situation, I was doing a training for a power plant in San Fernando. After I finished the seminar and about to leave the compound, the guard called my attention and asked me if I’m the same guy who writes about photography in SunStar. I said yes, are you a photographer? He said, no I just find it very interesting and asked if he can get a selfie with me.

I’ve had more amusing and inspiring experiences since I started writing about my journey in photography exactly six years now. I am no professional writer, often, I would just cross my fingers and hope my editors will iron out most of the wrinkles in my articles. I just genuinely write with my thoughts and ideas and hope to share my growing knowledge of photography. Continue reading “Photography Journey” »

Inverse Square Law

Did this experiment using a speedlight, my trusty old light meter and a steel tape. You will notice that between 10cm to 40cm, the jump between apertures are significantly wide but on the 50cm mark onwards, aperture gaps between reading is relatively close.

I never thought I’d be writing about this particular branch of science that covers the characteristics of light. Because photography is all about capturing light, we need to understand how it behaves. It’s a bit technical if you try to put numbers on it and start making a mathematical computation out of it.

The inverse square law is surprisingly very much applicable to photography especially if you’re using artificial lights or strobes. It might seem obvious on how light behaves since we experience it everyday but you’ll be surprised to know that some of your understanding of light is quite different from what actually happens.

The inverse square law is defined as the intensity of an effect such as illumination or gravitational force changes in inverse proportion to the square of the distance from the source. Stop, don’t panic! This is a general law in physics that applies to any electromagnetic wavelength and that includes the light. Continue reading “Inverse Square Law” »

Welcome To The Cloud

It’s in the cloud. If ever you returned back in time and you start talking about data found in the cloud, people would probably look up and wonder if you’re crazy or just plain stupid. Who would ever thought that we are now in the cloud technology. All electronic device and even business models and softwares are all directed to the cloud technology.

The new Lightroom CC is an independent application that you can install in your desktop. It is linked through the cloud which you can access from any mobile device.

Recently, Adobe decided to up their game with their involvement in cloud technology. They have been in this direction for the last three years when they decided to shift to Creative Cloud and now a major update with Lightroom. There’s now two Lightroom versions, one is the Classic Lightroom and the other one is Lightroom CC.

The Classic is the same old reliable and powerful software for photographers working on their desktops. The newly introduced LR CC is for the on the go photographer who wants access to his files anytime through any mobile device connected to the web. The application works exactly the same whether in desktop or in your mobile device. Continue reading “Welcome To The Cloud” »

Next Technology

I was on my way to Canon office in McKinley Hill, Taguig and The Venice Grand Canal Mall happens to be right beside their building. You cannot resist the view so since I don’t bring my camera a lot, I used my smartphone OPPO F1s set to RAW to take this shot and edited it using Snapseed.

In my basic photography workshop, I normally talk about the history of photography, how it started and where we are today. I always make it a point that no matter how much technology we put in cameras today, photography never changed. We are talking about the same lighting characteristic experienced in the past and now.

The physics of light never changed and it applies even to artificial light. It’s the same shadows, light reflection and color balance that’s present even before. So what’s changing today? Technology and the method of capturing light is the difference. The artistic side of photography is as hard as a rock, technology will influence it but not so much. Continue reading “Next Technology” »

What’s Holding You Back

I saw a link in facebook that talks about photography and the topic was about what’s holding you back in your photography journey. It didn’t take a lot of thinking for me to jump into the article and find out myself what I’m lacking and maybe help it share to my students as well. Hoping that this article will free everyone from disappointment.

It’s always been a challenge for me to shoot close to fine arts type of fashion editorials. I love the photos but can’t seem to nail it. You just have to keep on doing it and continue to challenge yourself. (Model: Adriana Gots)

With a ton of excitement, I watched the video. After a minute of beating around the bush I decided to end the video and start the automated assessment, it turned out to be too general and definitely not something i was expecting. I decided to write about the topic instead and share my own experience in the ever complicated world of photography. Continue reading “What’s Holding You Back” »

Down The Rabbit Hole

Shooting the Coach: After one hour of shooting I decided to take a break. I can’t seem to find the right light. If there’s a bad hair day, you can call this the bad light day. I kept on trying for another hour until I got what I want. From three lights to one. (Model: Lorie Enriquez, Makeup: Catherine Diala)

I am at a helpless level in photography right now. Gears cannot help me anymore. Majority of the challenge right now is creativity. The pace of Improvement at this stage is very slow. Tons of effort with few positive results. Still don’t know how long and far this level will be and what will be next down the rabbit hole.

When I started shooting fashion inspired photos back in the 2010, I had my eyes fixed on a target. I know what I want and where I’m headed. The destination was clear. I also know that there will be many challenges ahead. I had everything planned and although I made some adjustments along the way, it was manageable.

Continue reading “Down The Rabbit Hole” »

Problem Solving

I’ve been shooting fashion inspired photos for about 7 years already and not all of them came out well. One common thing though is I’m learning in each and every shoot I had, especially those ones that are frustratingly challenging. When it happens, nothing will be in place and no matter how you try to solve it, it will just get worse.

I recently had a chance to shoot Ms.Mara Smith, a Bisaya Black-American-Filipina standing 5 feet 10 inches tall. She was a natural in front of the camera. After preparing 6 lights, one was enough after all.

Continue reading “Problem Solving” »