Posts Categorized: Tutorials

How To Use Rim Lighting to Separate Subject from Background

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Rim lighting is an effective way to visually separate the subject from the background especially when it might be hard to distinguish one from the other because of an intersection of similar tones.  The rim (or kicker) light creates a thin highlight around the edges of the subject, partially outlining her with bright light. A… Read more »

Off-Camera Flash Radio Triggers and i-TTL, E-TTL

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I want to address a type of question that comes up every now and then regarding off-camera flash radio triggers.  Variations on this question seem to stem from a misunderstanding (or lack of understanding) about how flash exposure works at a basic level vs. how automatic flash works with systems like Canon’s E-TTL II and… Read more »

How To Set up a Softbox

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  The first time I tried to figure out how to set up a softbox, I was lost.  I made this for people who find themselves in that position. Featured: Photoflex LiteDome Q3-9 Lastolite Ezbox Hotshoe Softbox Alien Bees B800 Canon 580EX II

ND Filters and How To Use Them

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Neutral density filters (ND filters) can be an extremely useful tool for achieving proper exposure under challenging lighting conditions.  In this post, I’m going to introduce ND filters and explain what they’re for and how to use them. What is a neutral density (ND) filter? Essentially, an ND filter allows less light to pass through… Read more »

Interview with a Model: Cat RoPo

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Cat RoPo is a freelance model working in the New York City area. Having worked with Cat a few times, I thought she’d be able to offer some great advice and insight from a model’s perspective.  In this interview, among other topics, we talk about what some models look for when deciding on who to… Read more »

One-Light and V-Flat Reflector

An artist friend of mine, Allyson Lipkin, dropped by the studio the other day and we did a very quick shoot that resulted in several shots I’m very happy with. The entire shoot was done with a single Alien Bees B800 and a shoot-through umbrella. So, the one-light magic strikes again. But is it really… Read more »

How I Shot It: 1979 Theme Shoot

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In this video, I explore the photography of the late 1970s by attempting to recreate some of the looks from back then.  Influences and references were Studio 54, Guy Bourdin, various music videos, and advertising. One of the things that struck me when looking at the fashion and promo photos from back in the day,… Read more »

Underexposed Film Grain for Effect

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Episode #3 of Flirting with Film: “Underexposed Film Grain for Effect.”  I shoot a roll of Kodak Portra 800 in low-light conditions in order to maximize on grain.  Make sure to subscribe to my channel so you can be updated when new videos come out. Above:  Notice the thin area of this negative (shadow). Although… Read more »

Flirting With Film: Episode 2

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Episode #2 of my video series, Flirting with Film is now available on my YouTube channel.  Hang out with me as I burn through a roll of medium format in Central Park. Watch me shoot the snowy landscapes and scenery as I slowly lose feeling in my hands and feet.  Make sure to subscribe to… Read more »