Before those of you who are veteran artists roll your eyes, I want to preface this by reminding you how many photographers out there have taken too many shortcuts and simply don't understand the basics. I'm not criticizing their passion only their lack of patience, and how they don't understand the craft enough to truly be ready for clients.
Roberto Valenzuela has said, "Practice doesn't make perfect. Only perfect practice makes perfect. What if you're practicing it wrong?"
Well, I found two more one minute videos in Tamron USA's archives. They might be old, but they hit on two more points so many of you need help with. I look at hundreds of images on websites and in Facebook forums every day. I totally respect the motivation and the passion behind artists sharing their images, but over and over again, I see so many of the same mistakes. Many times they're really not mistakes, but things people missed to make their images stronger.
This first two videos are prime examples, and I'll use two of my images to make the point.
Learn to use a polarizer filter: In Japan in 2005 I was traveling with a little Fuji 12 megapixel point and shoot. It was in my pocket all the time and went everywhere with me. Since this was primarily a business trip, I chose to travel light, which was a huge mistake. I'd never do that today! Still, I managed to capture some great images.
We were at the Imperial Palace in Tokyo and I wanted to get a shot of the Koi in one of the ponds. It was almost impossible due to the reflection on top of the water - exactly what Ken Hubbard demonstrates in this first video. However, I did have on polarized sunglasses and experimented with turning them to get the right angle in front of the camera. Remember, I'm working with a $249 point and shoot. The results were terrific, and thanks to the skill set of a friend who knew Photoshop far better than I ever will, the original frame was the foundation for the image on the right, which was printed to 20x30 and hangs over our fireplace today.
Years ago we had a Hassellbad customer come by the booth at a trade show. He wanted to buy everything Denis Reggie had in his gear bag. He came back a year later, furious, because none of his images looked even close to what Denis was capturing. Well, everything he shot was at f8/125.
My own headshot by Gregory Heisler is a perfect example. One of Gregory's signatures is a narrow dept of field.
We were both working on doing portfolio review of the students at Hallmark Institute for three weeks straight. My birthday came up during the project, and before heading out to dinner one night he offered to do my portrait. I obviously jumped at the opportunity. He's one of the finest photographers in the world, and at that time had at least 75 covers of Time Magazine!
He knew exactly how he wanted to do the portrait and it took, at best, ten minutes. He shot wide open and was probably no more than 18-20 inches away from me. He used the modeling light on a studio strobe to my left, and an assistant to hold an opaque card between me and the camera, just to avoid lens flare.
Another thing that never changes is Tamron's dedication to helping photographers raise the bar on their skill set. They not only manufacturer incredible glass, but their tech team spends most of their time in the field working with photographers and Tamron's retail network. They're always working to help photographers raise the bar on their skill set. There's also great information being shared regularly in their newsletter. If you're not on their subscription list for their FREE newsletter, it's just a click away and always loaded with great content.
Find a Tamron retailer nearest you. Check out Tamron's lens line - you'll never be disapointed in the quality their optics can produce.