Wanted: photographer to shoot nude photoshoot

This thread on boards.ie ran a bit out of control. Mention the words “naked” and “girl” in the same sentence and you’re bound to have a whole bunch of testoserone filled males jumping in to offer their advice and opinions.

Anyway, someone is looking for a photographer to do her first “Suicide Girls” shoot. Read the thread if you’re in the Dublin area and are interested. Out of the replies so far, there’s perhaps 3 on-topic messages.

While on the topic of Irish forums, if you’re looking for another one, there’s also Photography Ireland.net which is run by Mark in Bandon. It hasn’t been going very long but it’s already very active and worth a look!

From that thread, this video documentary about the life of a fashion photographer cracked me up!

Selling Out, Selling Cheap

A few days ago Strobist published an article about how it’s harder for professional photographers to sell their wares online because of the burgeoning business of the royalty free stock photography market.

I have some sympathy for him, and I even feel slightly guilty because I received a cheque for over $120 from Shutterstock a while back from the sale of my photos and referrals. It’s not much, but I haven’t tried very hard to upload images there and it does ease the pain of being payed in US Dollars. The difference in Euro and Dollars must be killing European exporters, never mind that imported goods have to become more expensive in the United States.

The article is very convincing and compelling but it’s up to each of us to decide for ourselves. Read the following posts by two bloggers before you make up your mind:

  • Jason Dunsmore summarised some of the key ideas but he’s obviously in favour of people selling their images whichever way they like.
  • Chris Garret makes a great rebuttal on several points.
    You have to decide what the difference is between your photograph and some kids $1 stock photo. If there is no difference who’s fault is that? Not the kid and not the customer, that’s for sure.

The commoditisation of industries happens all the time and I’ve covered the argument between the professional and amateur sites before. I’ll even give away photos too. I’m glad whenever someone tells me they’re using the image, there’s nothing stopping them downloading them without so much as a nod in my direction. Did I mention I sell prints too through Deviant Art? More images will be uploaded there as I get the time to do so.

The real winners? They people running the stock photography sites.

A timely post by Stock Photo Talk – Some people do make money from microstock photography. I suspect they’re in the minority but where there’s a will..

Still stuck in P Mode?

Kathy writes that many users are stuck using P mode, or the automatic mode of their favourite tools simply because they don’t know how, or don’t know why they’d like to use those extra features.

I link to this usability article here because she used camera terminology to describe how a user approaches a complex application. Even if you’re not interested in the usability of stuff, and web apps in particular, then reading this article may inspire you to learn about why you haven’t used the A, S, or M modes on your fancy, expensive camera.

If you’re still interested, then read Understanding Exposure: How to Shoot Great Photographs with a Film or Digital Camera by Bryan Peterson. It’s my favourite book on photography and it will change the way you use your camera!

Shooting panoramas el cheapo

112588_panoheadcamera2.jpg If you’ve ever tried stitching photos together to create a panoramic photograph you’ll be more than aware of the awful distortion between one frame and the next. That’s one reason why it’s recommended that frames overlap by at least a third.

There is so much distortion because the camera is rotated around using a normal tripod or worse still, handheld. The axis around which the camera is rotated is centered on the camera body usually, but a panoramic tripod is different. The center of rotation should be the lens of the camera, specifically the “nodal point” of the lens where light paths cross before hitting the camera’s film or sensor.

Make Blog links to a tutorial on building a panoramic tripod head for $10! That’s a lot more reasonable than what you’d pay for a head from Manfrotto or manufacturer. It probably isn’t quite as portable or nice looking though and you might have to invest in some tools to cut the wood and build it but it would be an interesting project.

If that’s too complicated, you can build a battery using a bit of wire, a screw and a magnet!

Non-photography day

Today was Non Photography Day! The aim of the day is to enjoy the moment instead of trying to record it for posterity. Luckily I wasn’t doing anything wildly interesting visually today!

Paul Butzi writes that he is half-sympathetic to the cause being championed by Becca Bland. I have to admit she has a point too, but it’s a hobby, and a safe, enjoyable one at that. If I had something interesting to photograph I would have!

Maybe we should call “enjoying the moment” by another name? Call it “taking a non-photograph” instead. Enjoy the sun, and the peace and quiet or watch the world go by as you sit down with your lunch.
Did you take a non-photograph today?

US Book earns 306,000 Euro for Childline

Last year Ray D’Arcy and his team asked thousands of people all over Ireland to send in photographs to Today FM on October 1st. It was a huge success with over 20,000 photos sent in and eventually whittled down to 2,000. I had a few photos included which you can see in the US Book category on my blog.

30,000 copies of the US Book were sold, and yesterday, Childline were presented with a cheque for 306,000 Euro. That’s a great achievement and hopefully similar projects involving the public will happen again!

A Photo – how far would you go?

Thomas Hawk is defending himself from Jill Greenberg’s attacks and threats of court action because, in his opinion, what she is doing is abusing children.

Her photos capture emotional children who are distraught and frightened. Tears run down their faces, hands are held to eyes to hide tears. She apparently works them up to this state herself. Who would do that to a child?

She is taking babies, toddlers under three years old, stripping them of their clothes and then provoking them to various states of emotional distress, anger, rage etc. — so that she can then take photos of them this way to “illustrate her personal beliefs.”

Well done Thomas for standing up to her.