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Photo Of The Day By Philip Kuntz

Today’s Photo Of The Day is “Jasper Dawn” by Philip Kuntz. Location: Jasper National Park, Alberta, Canada.
Photo By Philip Kuntz

Today’s Photo Of The Day is “Jasper Dawn” by Philip Kuntz. Location: Jasper National Park, Alberta, Canada.

“The morning fog finally lifted as the sun kissed the top of Pyramid Peak,” describes Kuntz.

Photo of the Day is chosen from various OP galleries, including AssignmentsGalleries and the OP Contests. Assignments have weekly winners that are featured on the OP website homepage, FacebookTwitter and Instagram. To get your photos in the running, all you have to do is submit them.

The post Photo Of The Day By Philip Kuntz appeared first on Outdoor Photographer.

Source: Outdoor Photography
Photo Of The Day By Philip Kuntz



Today I took another dive into my folder of inspiration, years of gathering images that have particularly captured my attention. 


What is Fashion Photography?

The term “fashion photography” describes a type of fine art photography devoted to the promotion of fashion items such as haute couture clothing, as well as mass-market clothes, shoes, perfume and other branded products designed by fashion houses around the world. Practiced by many of the world’s greatest photographers, “fashion photography” should be seen primarily as a form of visual art, rather than an applied art, since the images created do not serve a utilitarian function. Furthermore, 21st century fashion photos – like mainstream TV commercials – are primarily concerned with the promotion of a brand (that is, a concept), rather than a physical product. (Please see also: Is Photography Art?) Whatever its precise meaning or aesthetics, “fashion photography” is closely linked to contemporary art and popular culture. Not only does it reflect popular attitudes, aspirations, and tastes, it also reflects the views that women have, about their self-image, gender and sexuality. In addition, “fashion photography” is inextricably linked to the media. Emerging initially to satisfy the needs of women’s magazines published by Conde Nast and Hearst, such as Vogue and Harper’s Bazaar – today augmented by publications like Elle, Cosmopolitan, Vanity Fair, W, Grazia and Seventeen – it now has instant worldwide impact thanks to the digital computer revolution and the Internet. Although New York replaced Paris as the the mecca of fashion photography as far back as the 1940s, Paris and Milan remain important creative centres, while Far Eastern cities in India and China will no doubt emerge as international fashion centres before long.



History of Fashion Photography

The earliest fashion photos were produced in the 1860s, to document the creations of the leading Parisian fashion houses. The idea of employing professional models was thought to be repugnant, so fashion photographers were reliant upon social celebrities, such as Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney or Sarah Bernhardt, to act as models. Even when full-time models were later employed, they were sketched by artists rather than photographed, because couturiers and designers thought that photographs would give away their secrets. It wasn’t until the late 1880s that photographs of models were used and then printed in fashion magazines, following the invention of the halftone printing process by Frederic Eugene Ives (1856–1937). This new print process made it possible to reproduce fashion photographs in mass-circulation journals and market fashion to a mass audience. (See also: 19th Century Photographers.) The two most important fashion magazines (both founded in America) were Harper’s Bazaar (founded by Harper & Brothers, first published 1867, later bought by Hearst) and Vogue (founded by Arthur Turnure, first published 1892, later bought by Conde-Nast). These journals and their expanding readership, together with rapidly advancing American technology in the area of photography and printing, made the United States an important centre in the area of fashion photography.

Paris Culture and Fashion (1880-1930)

But despite America’s technical edge, Paris remained the centre of Western culture, notably in the areas of fine art and printmaking. Indeed with the emergence of major artistic trends like Impressionism (1873-83), Post-Impressionism (1880-1900), Art Nouveau (1890-1914), Fauvism (1905-6) and Cubism (1907-14), Paris was the Mecca for all serious artists involved in painting and sculpture. Berlin was another important centre of avant-garde art and design, thanks to the influence of German Expressionism, as well as the influential Sturm Gallery (1912-32), the later Bauhaus Design School (1919-1933), and the activities of photographers like John Heartfield (1891-1968), Raoul Hausmann (1886-1971), Hannah Hoch (1889-1978), Heinrich Hoffmann (1885-1957) and Laszlo Moholy-Nagy (1895-1946).

It was the same in fashion. All the major trends emanated from Paris and Berlin, and it was these French and German fashion trends that were showcased in Harper’s Bazaar and Vogue. And since most of the major couturiers and fashion houses were located in Paris, it was here that most of the pioneering fashion photography was done. Indeed the first serious fashion photo-shoot was done in Paris in 1911 by the American photographer Edward Steichen (1879-1973), when he photographed a series of gowns made by the couturier Paul Poiret, so as to convey their physical quality as well as their formal appearance. Published in the magazine Art et Decoration, Steichen’s images were seen as the first modern fashion photos ever published. Other French magazines that employed fashion photography during the prewar years included La Mode Practique and La Gazette du Bon Ton, while other early 20th-century Parisian fashion photographers include: the Seeberger brothers – Jules Seeberger (1872-1932), Louis Seeberger (1874-1946) and Henri Seeberger (1876-1956) – Maison Reutlinger, Boissonnas et Taponnier and Henri Manuel.

Note: Modern French fashion photography originated with three Parisian postcard photographers known as the Seeberger brothers (Jules, Louis, Henri), who began taking portrait photos of the upper echelon of French society around 1910 onwards. As these casual portraits of beautiful women, clad in the latest fashions at horse races, holiday resorts and cafes, began to appear in journals and magazines, couturiers such as Chanel, Hermes, and Madeleine Vionnet rushed to send their fashion models to be photographed by the brothers.

Although hit hard by The Great War (1914-18), France retained its position as the centre of art and fashion throughout the 1920s and 30s, thanks to the birth of Surrealism in 1924, as well as the rise of couturiers such as Chanel, Balenciaga, Schiaparelli, and Lanvin, each of whom became known for their distinctive styles. As a result, the city continued to attract top camera artists including Horst P. Horst (1906-99), Man Ray (1890-1976), Cecil Beaton (1904-80), George Hoyningen-Huene (1900-68), Erwin Blumenfeld (1897-1969), Brassai (1899-1984) and Andre Kertesz (1894-1985), as well as the design-genius Alexey Brodovitch (1898-1971).

Note: On both sides of the Atlantic, the emergence of department stores greatly increased the accessibility of women’s fashion. In Paris the leading fashion stores included Le Bon Marche, La Samaritaine, and the Grands Magasins Dufayel, while in America they included Macy’s, McCreary’s, Abraham & Straus, AT Stewart Dry Goods Store (all New York), Marshall Field & Company, Carson Pirie Scott (both Chicago), and Wanamaker’s (Philadelphia).

Fashion Photography in America (1900-1930)

Such activity in Paris did not prevent American fashion photography from progressing also. The country’s growing wealth, the power of Harper’s Bazaar and Vogue, as well as its tradition of photographic art – exemplified by the work of Alfred Stieglitz (1864-1946), and later Paul Strand (1890-1976), Charles Sheeler (1883-1965), Dorothea Lange (1895-1965) and Walker Evans (1903–1975) – all combined to make New York a hotbed of innovation.

The first notable American fashion photographer was Baron Adolf de Meyer (1868-1946) – best-known for his elegant portraits of celebrities such as Mary Pickford, John Barrymore, Lillian Gish, Ruth St. Denis, Britain’s King George V and Queen Mary – who in 1913 became the first official fashion photographer for the American magazine Vogue, now owned by Conde-Nast. De Meyer was the first to imbue his fashion photos with a sense of “mood”, by bathing his shots in a limpid atmosphere and shimmering light. This refinement opened the way for fashion photography to evoke a wide range of feelings in the viewer, thus abandoning the traditional convention of using fashion photos for illustration purposes only. (For the evocative effects created by early portrait photographers, see the work of Julia Margaret Cameron: 1815-79.)

During the early part of the 20th century, another significant factor in the growth of the American fashion industry (and thus American fashion photography) concerned the rise of the “ready-to-wear” clothes industry, and the contemporaneous development of an independent US style quite unconnected with Parisian fashion. In effect, the American fashion market switched from Parisian couture to individualized ready-to-wear clothing, marketed and promoted through magazines like Women’s Wear Daily (founded 1910), Harper’s Bazaar, and Ladies Home Journal (founded 1883 – and in 1903 became the first American magazine to reach 1 million subscribers).

In 1924, Adolf de Meyer’s ‘soft-focus’ effects were superceded by Steichen’s clean geometric style of photographic modernism, which substituted simple but sleek backdrops for de Meyer’s rococo settings. Like the smooth lines, geometric shapes, and streamlined forms of Art Deco – the hugely influential design movement developed in America – Steichen’s photos showed that US fashion photographers intended to lead Europe, not follow it. The fact that America was the land of European emigrants, liberated from the traditional and old fashioned values of their homelands, was an added advantage. Thus Steichen was able to portray the modern woman in a modern style of clothing that reflected her new-found freedom from the corset – a situation later portrayed by Horst P Horst in his seminal Vogue image, entitled “The Mainbocher Corset” (1939). See also Steichen’s series of photographs of Marion Morehouse, who embodied the archetypal “contemporary” woman, the flapper.

Another important development was engineered by Carmel Snow, editor-in-chief of Harper’s Bazaar, who arranged for the Hungarian sports photographer Martin Munkacsi (1896-1963) to shoot some photos for a swimwear spread, out in the open on a windy beach. As Lucile Brokaw, the model, ran towards the camera, Munkacsi photographed her in motion, blurred and hair streaming, and in that instant shattered the convention that fashion photographs could only be taken inside a controlled studio environment. Munkacsi’s spontaneous realism revolutionized the aesthetics of fashion photography, and opened the way for others to follow.

Also important was the invention of Kodachrome a type of colour film introduced by Eastman Kodak in 1935. One of the first camera artists to use colour in fashion photography was Louise Dahl-Wolfe (1895-1989), best-known for her outdoor photo-shoots for Harper’s Bazaar. She was also one of the first to use natural light, and to use exotic locations for her photography.

Surrealist Fashion Photography

Presided over by its chief theorist Andre Breton (1896-1966), the Paris-based Surrealism movement, with its fantastic, dreamlike attributes, had a significant influence on fashion photography. This is best exemplified by the work of Man Ray, the American camera artist who charted an entirely new direction for fashion photography, mostly because he disregarded the conventions and experimented with surreal, expressionistic imagery in his dark room. In effect, his contrived, indoor, pictorialist style of work represented the opposite end of the spectrum to the spontaneity of Munkacsi. Another important pictorialist fashion photographer was Erwin Blumenfeld (1897-1969) who employed numerous techniques including solarization, overprinting, juxtapositioning of colour transparencies, and even chilling wet negatives in the refrigerator in order to achieve his surreal effects. Other camera artists who incorporated surrealist ideas in their photos included the Englishman Peter Rose Pulham (1910-56), the Frenchman Andre Durst (1907-49), the American George Platt Lynes (1907-55), and the inimitable Cecil Beaton.


World War II and 1950s

The advent of war prompted numerous European painters, sculptors and photographers to move to the safety of the United States. The trend began during the 1930s and accelerated from the time of Hitler’s rise to power in Germany, in 1933. Thus, for instance, the designer and photographer Alexey Brodovitch (1898-1971) emigrated from Paris to New York in 1930; Martin Munkacsi did it in 1934; George Hoyningen-Huene moved in 1935; and Erwin Blumenfeld (1897-1969) in 1941.

Fashion in the United States during World War II was a depressing business. Not only was there a serious lack of fashion materials, designers and models, but people had lost interest in clothes in the face of so much tragedy and uncertainty. Fashion was considered a frivolous and unnecessary form of self-indulgence. To reconnect with their readers, fashion magazines profiled women’s role in the war, promoted fashion as morale building, replaced society columns with war reports, and championed tailored but plain uniform-style clothing. Studio photography with its expensive lighting systems and intricate setups disappeared almost entirely. Many photographers (Lee Miller in Paris, Cecil Beaton in London, Louise Dahl-Wolfe in New York) adopted a direct, straightforward style almost like a documentary.

By the end of the war, the global centre of fashion photography had shifted from Paris to New York, where the rivalry between Harper’s Bazaar and Vogue was in full swing. The most important photographers were now Martin Munkacsi, Louise Dahl-Wolfe, Irving Penn (1917–2009), Richard Avedon (1923-2004), all of whom would make significant contributions to fashion photography, although Penn and Avedon would dominate the genre for years to come. Like many great modern artists they had the ability to reinvent themselves with almost every decade.

Avedon’s photos were marked by their chic insouciance and boundless vitality. He also had a unique gift for inventive risk-taking and imaginative experimentation, and was a perceptive talent-spotter, always finding the “face” that best captures the “look” of the moment, such as Dorian Leigh, Suzy Parker, Twiggy, Jean Shrimpton, Brooke Shields, and Nastassja Kinski. In contrast, Penn’s photography was all about beauty and form – elements that combined most perfectly in his later series of still life photos. He was the first to use austere grey and white backgrounds, and his studio arrangements were both aesthetic and meticulous. If Avedon’s work can be described as “immediate”, Penn’s is “monumental”. In addition to their fashion work, both men produced outstanding portrait art – see, for instance, Penn’s immortal portrait of Pablo Picasso, or Avedon’s portrait of the model Dovima wearing a Dior dress surrounded by African elephants.

Another major postwar talent was the British camera artist Norman Parkinson (1913-90), who joined Vogue (International) in 1946 and began working for US Vogue in 1949. Parkinson’s “action realist” style and larger-than-life personality helped to transform conventional fashion photography.

In general, one can say that by the mid-1950s, a new fluid and energetic aesthetic had emerged to replace the more static prewar approach. In a sense this was no more than a reflection of the growing confidence shown by both business and consumers as prosperity began to take hold across America. With a rekindled interest in clothes, boosted by the stylish image and outfits of movie-stars, American women began to want more fashion and the magazines duly obliged. In addition to Avedon, Penn and Parkinson, other leading fashion photographers of the 1950s included, William Klein (b.1928) and Lillian Bassman (1917–2012).

Note: Harper’s Bazaar and Vogue competed strongly for the most innovative fashion editors, art directors and designers, many of whom had a huge effect on the development of clothing and other fashion photography, through their influence over their staff photographers and freelance cameramen. The two best examples include: Alexey Brodovitch, art director at Harper’s Bazaar (1934-56); and Mrs. T. Reed Vreeland, fashion editor at Harpers (1936–1962), later editor-in-chief at Vogue.

Fashion Photography in the 1960s

While the 1950s introduced a fresh, adventurous spirit into fashion camera art, the 1960s witnessed a total change. A whole new world of fashion opened up as a result of the 60s cultural revolution. New forms of pop music, pop art, greater leisure time, a more liberal attitude to sex, and of course the sudden “generation gap”, all combined to make fashion intensely relevant for the young – a phenomenon reflected in the emergence of new words like “trendy” and “fashion-conscious”. A widespread urge to be seen as “hip” or “cool” fuelled a demand for new styles, shapes, materials and colours. Other important influences on attitudes to fashion (and thus fashion photography) included the Vietnam War, the NASA Space Program, the women’s liberation movement, and the issue of “race”. Although not 100 percent dominated by youth culture, 60s fashion was redefined by the demands of young people.

This widening demand for fashion, allied to changing social and moral values, had a major impact on fashion photography. The best young photographers – such as the London trio of David Bailey (b.1938), Terence Donovan (1936-96) and Brian Duffy (1933-2010) – enjoyed skyrocketing fees and iconic status; Bailey became almost as famous as the celebrities he photographed. Models, too, like Jean Shrimpton (Bailey’s muse), Twiggy, Lauren Hutton and Veruschka, became household names.

If 1960s fashion photography had any unifying aesthetic, it was “novelty”. Magazines needed new and exciting images in order to compete. David Bailey was bold, direct and undeniably focused; Terence Donovan pioneered the use of stark and gritty urban environments; Yasuhiro Wakabayashi (b.1930), better known as Hiro, used unusual lighting, creative juxtapositions and a unique feel for colour to create a monumental, surreal style; Bob Richardson (1928-2005) put sex, drugs and rock ‘n’ roll into his photos, as did Art Kane (1925-95) – at 26, the art director for Seventeen Magazine, while Diane Arbus (1923-1971) produced some of the most disturbing children’s fashion images ever published.

For a brief explanation of camera and photographic terms, please see: Art Photography Glossary.

Fashion Photography in the 1970s

During the 1970s, the exotic, hippy styles of the 60s were replaced with more practical apparel. Jeans became “the” signature item of casualwear, and demand for ready-to-wear (pret-a-porter) clothes exploded. Fashion spread from the young to all ages, and this newly-found consumerism propelled fashion into a multi-billion dollar industry, reinforced by slick advertising campaigns and cutting-edge TV commercials.

French Vogue now took the creative lead in fashion photography thanks to camera artists such as Helmut Newton (1920-2004) and Guy Bourdin (1928-91). Newton was best-known for subversive and erotic imagery that somehow maintains an ironic tone, while Bourdin was renowned for his highly artistic, colourful, occasionally surreal images. Deborah Turbeville (1932-2013) was the first to use overweight and unsightly models. All three helped to transform conventional, well-lit fashion-imagery into something much more edgy and offbeat.

Fashion models continued to make it big in the 70s. In 1975, Margaux Hemingway signed the first million-dollar contract as the face of Fabergé’s Babe perfume, while Lauren Hutton appeared on cover of Vogue 25 times(!). Black models also hit the big time, as exemplified by Iman, Donyale Luna, Naomi Sims and Beverly Johnson, who was the first African American model to feature on the cover of American Vogue in 1974. Other top models of the 70s decade included Cybill Shepherd, Patti Hansen, Penelope Tree, Grace Jones and Jerry Hall.

Fashion Photography in the 1980s

While some of the most creative fashion photography of the 1980s continued to be produced by ‘old-timers’ like Richard Avedon – see, for instance, his narrative advertising campaign “The Diors,”or his nude shot of Nastassja Kinski entwined with a snake – younger photographers also emerged into the limelight, including: Herb Ritts (1952-2002), best-known for his iconic shot of “Stephanie, Cindy, Christy, Tatjana, Naomi, Hollywood, 1989” which appeared in Rolling Stone Magazine; Bruce Weber (b.1946) who presented a new outlook on masculinity through his photo-shoots for Armani and Calvin Klein, as did Robert Mapplethorpe (1946-89) with his homoerotic shots; and Gian Paolo Barbieri (b.1938), noted for his work for fashion designers Armani, Versace, Dolce & Gabbana, Pomellato, and Giuseppe Zanotti. At the same time, women’s independence was emphasized in various settings, by photographers like Denis Piel (b.1944) and Bert Stern (1929-2013).

Controversy, always a handy tool with which to boost flagging commercial fortunes, reared its head as a result of Benetton’s fashion campaign, shot by Oliviero Toscani (b.1942). Images included one of a patient dying of AIDS in front of grieving relatives, while others incorporated references to racism, war, religion and the death penalty.

The leading supermodels of 1980s fashion photography included: Gia Marie Carangi, Ines de la Fressange, Cheryl Tiegs, Christie Brinkley, Paulina Porizkova, Brooke Shields, Heather Locklear, Carol Alt, and Elle Macpherson, among others. It was during this decade that supermodels stopped being seen as individuals and started to be regarded as images, just like movie stars. Witness the celebrity party shots taken by fashion photographer Roxanne Lowit (b.1965) of supermodels like Elle Macpherson, Naomi Campbell and others.

Fashion Photography in the 1990s

Fashion during the 90s turned almost Mannerist, as consumers embraced shabby grunge styles, as well as tattoos and body piercing. Later in the decade there was a revival of certain late 60s/ early 70s styles, although the 1990s retained an edginess all of its own. Long established artists like Irving Penn and Helmut Newton continued to dominate the field, while Ellen von Unwerth (b.1954) introduced viewers to her unique brand of erotic femininity. In addition, Peter Lindberg (b.1944), noted for his monochrome photos, achieved fame with his January 1990 Vogue cover featuring Christy Turlington, Cindy Crawford, Naomi Campbell, Linda Evangelista and Tatjana Patitz. Meanwhile his younger contemporary Steven Meisel (b.1954) was praised for his shots of Madonna in her 1992 book “Sex” and for Vanity Fair. The Peruvian fashion photographer Mario Testino (b.1954) also received attention for his 1997 Vanity Fair cover photos of the late Lady Di, Princess of Wales.

A key photographic trend (dubbed “heroin chic”), perhaps reflecting the gender ambivalence of the age, was the use of pale emaciated androgynous-style models, exemplified by the photo-shoot for Calvin Klein’s “Obsession”, by Mario Sorrenti (b.1971), which featured a waifish Kate Moss.

The 1990s saw the apogee of fashion model-power, as embodied by the photographic superstars cited above – Naomi Campbell, Linda Evangelista, Christy Turlington, Claudia Schiffer and Tatjana Patitz. The Heroin Chic style flared briefly in mid-decade, but petered out with the rise to fame of the Brazilian model Gisele Bundchen, in 1999. The 90s also witnessed the growing use of established celebrities in fashion photo-shoots, as exemplified by Julia Roberts, who became the face of Lancome.

Fashion Photography in the 21st Century

The twenty-first century has already been marked by three things: the 9/11 bombings; globalization and the impoverishment of the Third World; and the economic downturn (2007-2014). This appears to have influenced fashion in numerous ways. Ethical trading practices and green policies are shaping buying policies. Ready-to-wear clothes are now largely manufactured in China. Escapism to mitigate financial and political uncertainties has encouraged a revival of surrealistic or kitsch-style fashion photography, as well as the continued use of celebrities and long established supermodels. Growing disatisfaction with established values in the the wake of worldwide austerity continues to stimulate the use of controversial elements in the design of fashion photoshoots, although not to the extent of Oliviero Toscani’s confrontational 1980s fashion-shoots for Benetton.

With the deaths of Herb Ritts (in 2002), Richard Avedon, Helmut Newton, Francesco Scavullo (in 2004), and Irving Penn (in 2009), today’s leading fashion photographers include Patrick Demarchelier, Steven Meisel, Mario Testino, Peter Lindbergh, Oliviero Toscani (b.1942), Annie Leibovitz (b.1949), Nick Knight (b.1958) and David LaChapelle (1963). Younger camera artists include Christophe Kutner, Glen Luchford, Craig McDean and Javier Vallhonrat.

Although Kate Moss, Naomi Campbell, Gisele Bundchen and other ‘established’ models continue to lead the field, the new crop of professional fashion models of the 21st century – as cited in American Vogue (May 2007) – include: Agyness Deyn, Lily Donaldson, Chanel Iman, Doutzen Kroes, Sasha Pivovarova, Hilary Rhoda, Coco Rocha, Jessica Stam, Caroline Trentini and Raquel Zimmermann.

Meantime the leading fashion magazines (aside from Vogue and Harper’s Bazaar) now include Elle (the world’s best selling fashion magazine), Cosmopolitan, Seventeen, W, Vanity Fair, GQ, Grazia, Marie Claire, as well as Dazed and Confused, and Sleaze Nation.

Photo Of The Day By Jessica Nelson

Today’s Photo Of The Day is “Not This Again” by Jessica Nelson. Location: Maryland.
Photo By Jessica Nelson

Today’s Photo Of The Day is “Not This Again” by Jessica Nelson. Location: Maryland.

Nelson’s photo of a bluebird sitting on a branch while waiting out the snowstorm was taken in Maryland.

See more of Jessica Nelson’s photography at

Photo of the Day is chosen from various OP galleries, including AssignmentsGalleries and the OP Contests. Assignments have weekly winners that are featured on the OP website homepage, FacebookTwitter and Instagram. To get your photos in the running, all you have to do is submit them.

The post Photo Of The Day By Jessica Nelson appeared first on Outdoor Photographer.

Source: Outdoor Photography
Photo Of The Day By Jessica Nelson




A list of websites that feature the hottest editorials ever published

We all pull inspiration from different sources. For some, it’s books and/or magazines that we go to for visual inspiration. For others, it could be going to a gallery and seeing art hanging on the walls, in person, in all its glory. And yet now, because of the internet, it seems we are finding our inspiration regularly from various websites. In my opinion, some of these sites aren’t so good. On the other hand, though, some sites really stand out!!



So where do I go when I want to look at some truly inspirational work? There are a few sites I signed up for their email updates because they consistently show great work by photographers who’s work I truly admire. Then there are other sites I just check in on every once in awhile when I find the time to surf the web, which truth be told, isn’t that often and getting less and less these days. However, I have to admit, it’s good for me to keep up to date on who’s being published and where. There’s a lot of amazing websites out there but for this list I want to highlight the sites that showcase awesome and beautiful editorials. Not every site on this list features an editorial all the time, but for the most part, they do. And it’s these sites that draw me back repeatedly because of their discerning taste.


Take note: while I think it’s perfectly fine to be inspired with other people’s work, take care to use their work as inspiration and not to copy. Use your own unique way of seeing to execute your own vision. That’s key to developing your eye. And stream lining your style


AND: (no, I’m not done yet) I have this to add as well. I think a lot of young people (young photographers) do this thing I call “compare and despair”. It’s where you go out and shoot what you feel is a fairly good shoot and then race home, jump on the computer and start comparing yourself to photographers who have been shooting for 20, 30, maybe even 40 years more than you have. You then cancel out any good feelings you might have for your own work. Try to look at the following sites for visual aids to help inspire you, not make you feel thwarted, thereby squelching your own natural learning curve.


Lastly, I’d love to know if you have any sites that you guys frequent. It’s always good to hear about what you find inspiring. I’m sure the other readers would love to read about them as well.


The List:


  1. Haute Macabre
    One of my favorites sites to visit. I’m subscribed to them and I check every email. I might not click through every one but they are at the top of my list because they regularly feature two of my favorite photographers, Javier Valhonrat and Paolo Roversi. Plus, they’re theme leans towards beautiful gothic looks. Which is a big part of my own style, I think. And….well…..they’ve featured me on their site. That’s always a plus.
  2. Cali Kartel
    Cali Kartel has consistently great editorials. I haven’t been featured on there, which unnerved me at first since I once LIVED in Cali and I’m FROM Cali. Still, not one to hold a grudge, this site rocks!
  3. Ben Trovato
    A site dedicated to showcasing exclusive fashion editorials by up-and-coming photographers.
  4. Fashion Gone Rogue
    Up to date, current, still on the newsstands fashion editorials delivered right to your monitor! Fabulous site.
  5. The Fashionisto
    All men’s editorial features. And since I shoot men and love shooting men, I like to see what’s being published out there.
  6. The Contributing Editor
    I fell in love with The Contributing Editor awhile ago. They always feature gorgeous men’s editorials.
  7. Homotography
    The hottest of the men’s editorials.
  8. The Ones 2 Watch
    Because you should be watching the ones to watch. ; )
  9. The Photography Link
    Their motto says it all: “Because Images are Everything”. I agree.
  10. Fashion Editorials
    This aptly named site has exactly what their url promises: Fashion Editorials. While they sort of run the same editorials that Fashion Gone Rogue does, sometimes you’ll find some random spreads that are worth taking a look at.
  11. The House of Editorial
    I love this site because they run the editorials that everybody else isn’t running, which is important. The work they feature is just as gorgeous and just as compelling as the “bigger magazine” spreads.
  12. Noir Façade
    This is a livejournal site and it’s well thought out. I love most of the stories they feature.
  13. Paper Mode
    Great resource for looking up older editorials that are outstanding in every way!






Diving into my inspiration files today to pick out some of my favorite images from some of my favorite photographers. 





“Fashion photographers are the new painters,” Peter Lindbergh said as he prepared the show of his dramatic black-and-white images that opened last week at the Gagosian Gallery in Paris. Who would have guessed in the heady 1980s — when Mr. Lindbergh’s new, natural images of Linda Evangelista, Cindy Crawford and others created the supermodel — that the art world would lose its disdain for fashion photography’s commercialism?

Today, fashion photography is art’s rising star, drawing large crowds to exhibitions (which produce much-needed revenue from sponsorships, rentals and even merchandise) and enticing more collectors. Even the fashion industry itself is showing more respect for the form.

Big names are in museum spotlights, from Horst’s classical elegance since Sept. 6 at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London, to Mario Testino’s “Alta Moda,” Peruvians in local dress, at Dallas Contemporary from Sept. 21.

The Sims Reed Gallery in London, which shows prints, is capitalizing on the trend, too, exhibiting fashion photography for the first time, starting this week with Miles Aldridge’s hyper-real, sensual photos, including the sunbathing woman in “Tan Lines” (12,000 pounds, or about $19,400) alongside his preliminary sketches, lithographs and screen prints. As Lyndsey Ingram, the gallery owner, said, “Showing fashion photographs will set us apart from our competitors.”

Mark McKenna, executive director of the Herb Ritts Foundation, pinpointed the 2008 economic downturn as the catalyst for fashion photography’s emergence.

“People wanted to surround themselves with images of glamour and beauty as things were tough, and fashion photos represented the opposite of what was happening in their day-to-day lives,” he said, noting that there has been a twofold increase in prices for Mr. Ritts’s work since then.

Social media today is giving contemporary fashion photographers a far greater profile than artists, who tend to shy away from public platforms, said Alexander Gilkes, a founder of the online auction house Paddle8. Examples include Steven Klein’s Tumblr account, which displays his archive, most pictures shared and easy contact information, and Nick Knight’s 135,184 Instagram followers.

With the explosion of street-style blogs, Instagram and Pinterest, fashion photography has become the new visual language. “We’re very conscious about what people look like now, so that is how we see photos today,” said Michael Hoppen, whose eponymous gallery in the Chelsea neighborhood of London represents fashion favorites such as Ellen von Unwerth and William Klein, whose work was displayed this summer.


From left, “Actress Gloria Swanson,” 1924, by Edward Steichen; “Mainbocher Corset,” 1939, by Horst P. Horst. Credit Condé Nast Archive, Condé Nast Publications, Inc., New York (Gloria Swanson); Condé Nast/Horst Estate, via Victoria and Albert Museum (Mainbocher Corset)

“Many photos not shot as fashion images are now seen as fashion, like Klein’s ‘Mamas and Papas,’ which was a street photo when he shot it,” Mr. Hoppen said. “And we’ve recontextualized the picture as we’ve moved away from the time.” (Mr. Hoppen also manages the estate of Guy Bourdin, whose sensuous, provocative fashion images are to be shown in London from Nov. 27 to March 15.)

At the Smithsonian American Art Museum in Washington, Elizabeth Broun, its director, echoed Mr. Hoppen’s comments, saying, “We are much more accepting of fashion photography because we have moved from high art to an all-embracing visual culture.” The museum has scheduled for October 2015 a major Irving Penn retrospective, which is to include unseen personal work alongside his celebrated fashion images.

The Smithsonian is hoping for big attendance numbers, much like the Museum Bellerive in Zurich did when it chose as its first photography exhibition the touring show “Coming Into Fashion: A Century of Photography at Condé Nast,” which opened in July.

“Models and lifestyle have taken over from film and everybody, including myself, relates to it,” said Jacqueline Greenspan, the museum’s administrative director. As of Sept. 14, 10,345 people had seen the show, the gallery confirmed in an email. It closes Oct. 19.

“It’s not just young people who show up for the first time,” Ms. Greenspan said. “There are a lot of men, which we didn’t expect, as well as a boho crowd, which we’ve never had before.”

Several shows have had the crowds to prove the appeal: Consider the 2012 Ritts exhibit at the Getty Museum in Los Angeles, which drew 364,656 visitors, or Mr. Lindbergh’s “Images of Woman and the Unknown” this spring at Gallery HDLU in Zagreb, Croatia. It attracted 11,200 visitors in three weeks, making it, the gallery said, the most popular contemporary art event of the last 10 years in Croatia and neighboring countries.

From an art venue’s standpoint, fashion exhibits also produce new commercial opportunities. For example, the luxury outlet giant Value Retail opened its deep purses for the Victoria and Albert for the first time when its shopping centers in Bicester Village in England and Kildare Village in Ireland sponsored the museum’s Horst exhibit.

Brett Rogers, director of the Photographers’ Gallery in London, said the gallery’s rental for corporate events increased an average of 20 percent when it shows fashion photography like the elegant flappers of Edward Steichen and the edgy, vibrant looks of the Dutch photographer Viviane Sassen, both to debut on Oct. 31.

“Some photography shows are too provocative for corporates,” she said, “but beautiful clothes mean more businesses want to be linked with and entertain in these rooms.”


“Actress Anna May Wong,” 1930, by Edward Steichen; and “Traditional Women’s Dress, Province of Espinar Cusco, Peru,” 2007, by Mario Testino. Credit Edward Steichen/Condé Nast Archive, Condé Nast Publications Inc., New York (Anna May Wong); Mario Testino (Peruvian dress)

Fashion photography has also become an increasingly attractive investment.

“I prefer to buy a picture instead of putting my money into the stock exchange because I can see it and there are no taxes if you sell today,” said Guilhem Gravier, a Paris-based collector who paid $5,000 in 2002 for his first photograph — Mr. Ritts’s “El Mirage, Versace Dress, Back View” — which is now valued at $60,000. “I don’t trust the financial market, but I trust the fashion photography market because it’s going upwards steadily.”

Auction prices have soared, with fashion photography regularly topping the tallies thanks to famous names such as Richard Avedon, Helmut Newton, Mr. Penn and now Mr. Lindbergh. For example, two of the three top lots at Christie’s New York photography sale in April were Penn images: “Woman With Roses on Her Arm (Lisa Fonssagrives),” which sold for $185,000, and a black and white Vogue cover image featuring Jean Patchett, $161,000.

However, such prices are modest in comparison with other art forms. Sotheby’s London, for example, sold three oil studies by Francis Bacon for £26.6 million in late June, while Tracey Emin’s unmade bed went for £2.5 million at Christie’s London in January. So in comparison, Kara Vander Weg of the Gagosian Gallery noted, the more affordable price, even for an Avedon print, is a big entry-level draw for new collectors, who eventually may branch out to more expensive works by contemporary artists.

Scarcity has helped fuel fashion photography’s value. There are no reprints of Mr. Avedon’s work, as stipulated in his will, said Ms. Vander Weg, who represents the photographer’s images on behalf of the Gagosian Gallery. Modern-day photographers are limiting their prints too, with Mr. Aldridge distributing just three per photograph to his New York, London and Amsterdam galleries.

“As the Internet has smashed magazines and the print world into smithereens, we are now seeking other forums,” Mr. Aldridge said. “When I take a picture, I wantto make the print big for my galleries, so I shoot on film; in that way it is to be printed for the gallery rather than a magazine.”

International markets also have been responding to fashion photography’s appeal, which is why Arnaud Adida, founder of the A. Galerie in Paris, said in an email interview that he took only fashion images to display at Photo Shanghai, the city’s first international photography fair, held this month.

Mr. Adida said his stand, which showcased images such as Patrick Demarchelier’s 1994 intimate portrait of Kate Moss and Carla Bruni, proved to be so popular that within a week of the event he had made enough sales to recoup his expenses, and added 25 new and potential clients to his roster.

Fashion photography is also more recognized as a big part of the fashion industry today, said Inez Van Lamsweerde, who, along with Vinoodh Matadin, make up a well-known duo in the field. Their digitally manipulated fashion images are often seen in influential art spaces like the Whitney Museum of American Art and the São Paulo Biennial, in Brazil.

“We translate the designers’ idea into an image that people buy,” Ms. Van Lamsweerde said. “Nowadays this is valued more because of the Internet and the need for attention-grabbing content on the web in our image-saturated culture.”

With fashion institutions financing major cultural events, like Chanel’s sponsorship at the Hyères fashion and photography festival in France, many see photography’s role within art continuing to grow. After all, Mr. Lindbergh said, “art is after fashion’s big bucks.”

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Photo Of The Day By Michael Ryan

Today’s Photo Of The Day is “Pacifier” by Michael Ryan. Location: California.
Photo By Michael Ryan

Today’s Photo Of The Day is “Pacifier” by Michael Ryan. Location: California.

See more of Michael Ryan’s photography at

Photo of the Day is chosen from various OP galleries, including AssignmentsGalleries and the OP Contests. Assignments have weekly winners that are featured on the OP website homepage, FacebookTwitter and Instagram. To get your photos in the running, all you have to do is submit them.

The post Photo Of The Day By Michael Ryan appeared first on Outdoor Photographer.

Source: Outdoor Photography
Photo Of The Day By Michael Ryan


Speed Up Your Site with a CDN: Getting Started Guide

This article was contributed by Darshan.

We all love faster loading websites and so do the search engines, but is your website loading as fast as possible?

Should you invest in a Content Delivery Network (CDN) to improve the speed of your site?

What is a CDN?

Hosting your files on a content delivery network is one of the best ways to speed up your site, and can often save up to 60% bandwidth.

CDNs work by hosting your files across a large network of servers around the world. When a user visits your site from New Zealand, they are downloading files from the server that is closest to them. This reduces the load on any single server, making the site faster.

Let’s find out if you need a CDN or not, and how to get started with a CDN.

  1. CDN Background Check

Before coming to any conclusion, we need to make some background checks. It will help us decide the precise route for your website speed optimization.

Nature of your website:

This is an important one as there are some domains like news, gadgets, lifestyle, travel, and food which are bound to have plenty of images on a single page or post.

Media upload frequency:

What is the frequency at which you upload media, images to be precise? The content publishing frequency does matter because the higher the frequency, the more the load your web server may need to bare serving those resources.

Traffic states:

What is the traffic state of your website like? Do you have a media heavy website with thousands of visitors per day?

If you have positive answer to any or all of these points, you may need a CDN resource.

Before coming to that conclusion, or suppose you have negative answer to any of the points discussed above, you might not need a CDN just yet.

So, let’s start with image optimization first. The following section suggests some techniques that will help you optimize images for your WordPress website.

  1. Optimize Images

Imagery on the first look may not look like it’s slowing down your website. But if you ask any web expert, you will get to know that images are one of the primarily slowing down factor for any website.

I would not say that images are the only entity making your website slow and get rid of that. No. Instead I would recommend you have the images when it requires the most. It helps you improve website engagement.

What is image optimization?

Well, before diving deeper into the image optimization techniques, you must know what image optimization really is, and how it works.

We can divide images into roughly two main categories (Please don’t consider the vector and raster. We’ll be talking about the raster images only).

  1. Print media images
  2. Web media images

The images made to use for printing purpose have different characteristics like high resolution, larger height and width, and higher pixel density per inch. Because these images will be used in various media printing, holding and other print based physical marketing mediums.

On the other hand the web media images have different characteristics unlike its counterparts, these images are generally smaller in size, have small height and width, and lower pixel density.

How to optimize images?

As we are talking about the website, let’s see what are some ways you can optimize image for web.

a) Optimize using photo editing applications:

If you know how to work with Photoshop or similar, please use it.

You need to scale down the image width to 600px-900px and let height be proportional to the width. And reduce the pixel density to 72 pixels per inch.

Roit is one such free desktop application that you can use for optimization.

b) Optimize using a WordPress plugin:

If working with a desktop application is too much, you may consider a WordPress plugin.

There are some WordPress plugins available that makes your image optimization task quite automated.

The one similarity you may find with image optimization plugins, are they all optimize the images while you upload them to your server and an option to optimize all previously uploaded images.

EWWW image optimizer plugin might be the best one to start with.

  1. Web Server and Traffic Geography

  • If you have a large number of visitors coming to your website, and the traffic is distributed into different geographies, you should consider a CDN service.
  • You are on a cloud based hosting environment, but your website is working and loading slow. This might be the best time to try a CDN service.

Why do we consider the traffic geography distribution?

Because all of your visitors from different locations, need to make a resource request to your central server. The longer the distance between your visitor and your web server, the longer it takes the images to reach.

How can a CDN help?

CDN service providers have a number of servers setup into various geographies. They cache your images and other static resources to all of their servers.

Now instead of requesting the central web server for resources, a visitor’s resource request gets mapped to the nearest geographical CDN server and the request served. It improves the turnaround time.

  1. Pre CDN Test

If migrating to a cloud infrastructure works fine for you, and you’ve optimized your imagery, you probably don’t need a CDN service.

But if you find that you need CDN service integrated on your website, I would highly recommend you take a pre CDN performance test.

As you are on the WordPress framework, I highly recommend you use a cache mechanism. Some of the WordPress plugins make the caching thing extremely easy. And some also provide easy CDN service integration as well.

If you are not sure which caching plugin to use, WP Super Cache may be a good option to start with. The installation, configuration and usage is pretty easy. Additionally, you will find plenty of online resources working with this plugin.

Please test your website performance with the Pingdom test, Google speed test, and GTmetrix. Log the results. We will compare the result after the CDN integration to understand the difference.

  1. CDN Providers & Selection

I would not suggest you to invest directly with a random CDN provider. There are many CDN providers, some are really cheap, while some are reliable.

Go through each of them and see which provider matches your requirements and price criteria. Many of the CDN providers, offer a free service trial for 14-30 days. It would be wise to first test the service and check the performance results, before investing.

There are plenty of CDN providers available to choose from, some of the front line players include: MaxCDN, KeyCDN, Amazon CloudFront, CloudFlare, and Microsoft Azure CDN. See here for web development and design services to help with the CDN selection or integration.

If you are not sure which CDN provider to choose, KeyCDN is the service I’ve personally tested before writing this article. No affiliation here, but I find their service reliable.

Additionally, they offer a free 14 day trial to test their service and performance of your website.

If you are looking for CDN integration guide, please follow the next point where I’ve discussed the CDN integration process.

  1. CDN Integration

If you are on the WordPress framework, a plugin will make setting up the CDN service, easy and quick.

No matter what CDN service you are opting for, there are common procedures you need to follow. Creating a “pull zone” is one of them. Login to your CDN provider’s website. Go to pull zone and hit the create button/link.

You will need to name the zone. Give it a meaningful name. Then you might be asked to select the zone type, so please select “PULL”, and finally you will be asked to provide the website URL, provide it.

All the major CDN providers have detailed documentation on the WordPress integration process. But if you want to follow a generic path, make sure you install the WP Super Cache plugin.

Plugin CDN Configuration:

Open the WP Super Cache plugin configuration page and check the Enable CDN Support checkbox.

Enter the KeyCDN zone URL into the Offsite URL text box and check the “Skip https URLs to avoid mixed content errors”. And hit the save changes button. That’s it!

  1. Post CDN Test

Once you’ve integrated the CDN service, installed the required plugin and configured the website to use the CDN service, now you need to test your website with the same website speed test plugins we covered in point #5.

You should get the improved results if you have an image heavy website. Let the test run for a week or so to get a better idea.

Let the Googlebot crawl your website with CDN integration. If you have a slow crawl rate, you can use the ‘Fetch as Google’ tool and ask Google to crawl your home page and all the links into it.

Observe the traffic states and see whether you get any SEO benefits by having the improved ranking positions. Do you see the average session duration increasing and bounce ratio decreasing?

If you observe positive results, you may consider investing in the CDN service, once your free trial is over.


Having visual elements on your website may increase user engagement, but generally images make your website load and work slower. Having proper image optimization, caching, and the right CDN service, may help you address the situation.

Author Bio: Darshan is a WordPress enthusiast, he loves to share articles that help individuals get most out of their WordPress website. Feel free to contact for a WordPress based custom web application development.

Source: Design
Speed Up Your Site with a CDN: Getting Started Guide


In The Bag: Top Photo Accessories

From a distance of 40 feet on a snowy, cloudy day at dusk, there wasn’t much light on this wild juvenile Cooper’s hawk, but a photograph cried out to be taken. George employed a MagBeam projected flash unit with a Canon Speedlite 600EX-RT to reach out. The hawk didn’t mind. Equipment: Hand-held Canon EOS 5D Mark IV with Canon EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS II USM lens and Canon Extender EF 1.4x III (560mm). Exposure: 1/500 sec., ƒ/11, ISO 1600.

Beyond camera and lenses, what photo accessories and tools do nature photographers need to carry in order to be prepared for a variety of likely subjects and situations? There’s so much cool stuff out there, but bag space and back strength have their limits! Here we’ll discuss some of the tools that I regularly employ in the field. And while we’ll share the brand names of specific products I carry, other manufacturers may offer goods that accomplish the same things. (Note that we don’t receive payment from any of these suppliers, but some do furnish equipment for testing.)

Neutral Density Filters

Neutral density (ND) filters reduce the light that enters the lens, allowing the photographer to employ capture settings that would not otherwise be possible. The most common use is in photographing falling or moving water; reducing light allows a lengthened exposure that renders the water silky smooth and emphasizes movement. I carry filters of two densities for this purpose. A five-stop ND is used most often, as my favorite shutter speeds for water are 1/8 to 1/2 second. But there are times when the water is very brightly lit and more light-filtering is needed to achieve the lengthened exposure; then the 10-stop ND becomes useful.

For really long exposures on a bright day, add a 15-stop ND filter to the bag. Let’s say we have people walking around in our scene. A single exposure of many seconds can actually erase them as they move about, eliminating lots of post-capture work in Photoshop! Think of the 15-stop filter as one that helps to achieve long exposures for special effects, such as recording the movement of clouds through a landscape in a single capture.

Oh, and one more! I sometimes carry a variable ND filter that can be precisely adjusted from two to eight stops in order to achieve the desired shutter speed and aperture. However, the variable ND filter is not suitable for use on lenses over 200mm. It is comprised of two polarizing filters that are rotated in front of each other, and when that much glass is put in front of a telephoto lens, sharpness will be lost. For longer focal lengths, a single ND filter is usually a sharper alternative, even if it isn’t as easy to use as a variable one.

ND filters now have another use, and that is for video. It is desirable to have a shutter speed of around 1/60th second when shooting at 30 frames per second (FPS) and 1/125th second at 60 FPS. This gives a smoother look to the video. On a bright day, it’s not possible to attain those speeds when using a large lens aperture for shallow depth of field without the addition of an ND filter. Note that when shooting video with frame grabs in mind, much higher shutter speeds are necessary, so the ND filter would not be used.

My personal choice for ND and polarizing filters is Singh-Ray ( I’ve worked with them for many years and tested the ND filters for clarity and color.

Projected Flash

Some 35 years ago, I began to experiment with Fresnel lenses and flashes to better concentrate light output on the subject. The Fresnel lenses I used then were the plastic kind you’d find in a bookstore to magnify the text on a page. A plastic bottle with a height equal to the focal length of the Fresnel lens was modified to hold the lens and fit over the flash. Soon, my son Torrey and I designed a more efficient product and began to manufacture the Project-A-Flash. The apparatus was still a bit bulky; when Walt Anderson developed the Better Beamer, a projected flash that folded down to fit easily into a camera pack, I transitioned to it.

Recently, a participant at one of my seminars introduced me to a new projected flash called the MagBeam from MagMod ( The MagBeam is a lightweight, collapsible rubber unit that holds the Fresnel lens in place. It attaches magnetically to the flash head via a separate elastic mount that stays in place to allow quick access. Like the Better Beamer, the MagBeam will gain approximately three stops of light when using a telephoto lens of at least a 200mm focal length, although it isn’t actually achieving more power, but rather gathering and focusing the light to the area that the lens sees. This is a great tool for bird and wildlife photography, either as fill flash or as the only light source in dark environments. The best way to purchase the MagBeam is in the MagBeam Wildlife Kit configuration ($74).

Remote Shutter Releases

Remote releases—whether hard-wired cables or wireless transmitters—allow the photographer to fire the camera without physically touching it. The remote release is one of several techniques I use to eliminate camera movement/vibration when working with long lenses, long exposures or multiple exposures. Cable versions include a simple, short connection with a button that closes the circuit and fires the camera, or a more complex unit that allows the camera to be programmed to take time-lapse images (intervalometer), long exposures that exceed the 30 seconds found on most cameras, or to fire the camera sometime in the future.

Wireless units (either built-in or accessories) use a radio or infrared beam to communicate with a hand-held remote device from which the photographer programs and fires the camera. The least-expensive option is the built-in version, which I use in the Canon EOS 5D Mark IV, coupled with an app on my iPhone or iPad. For other bodies, the camera manufacturers offer rather expensive after-market WiFi options, but I often use a relatively inexpensive wireless unit called the Phottix Aion (, about $95 online. It has all the functions of the complex cabled units plus multiple firing for HDR. The radio range is nearly 200 feet.

For more complex situations, I use the CamRanger ( to monitor and remotely fire the camera. The CamRanger is a WiFi transmitter that attaches to the camera and sends an ad hoc WiFi signal to a tablet or smartphone that is running the CamRanger app, which enables sophisticated still and video capture options, including precise focusing from as far as 150 feet away. This is by far the best way to monitor and fire a camera without touching it, but at $300, it’s not the least expensive route to remote capture.

LCD Loupe

We’ve mentioned the Hoodloupe ( in these pages a number of times because it really is an important tool. On a bright day, you can’t see the LCD on the back of a DSLR to make evaluations in Live View or read camera menus. If you are shooting video, you need to be looking at the LCD for focus and framing, and without an LCD loupe, this is not possible. The standard Hoodloupe is $90, and a mounting device to keep it in place for video will run another $19 (Cinema Strap) to $40 (HoodCrane).


I always carry a tripod, whether it’s a medium weight for long lenses and video, or a travel version that might not be quite as robust but will do the job in reasonable conditions (no wind). Lately I’ve been using a monopod more often because I’ve been working in locations where tripods aren’t allowed, or I need help with hand-holding long lenses where a tripod isn’t practical. A monopod will also steady a DSLR that is being used for video when a tripod with a fluid head can’t be used, as in this example of 4K video captured in low light at the Monterey Bay Aquarium ( The monopod and lens image stabilization did a pretty good job.

I’ve used the monopod when shooting from ships, where a tripod would have transferred the engine vibration, and from kayaks to relieve the weight of the camera and long lens over extended periods of time. Be sure you get a monopod that collapses enough so that you can use it sitting down and that has a head that pivots to change the angle of the camera—a ball head on a monopod is too much movement.

The post In The Bag: Top Photo Accessories appeared first on Outdoor Photographer.

Source: Outdoor Photography
In The Bag: Top Photo Accessories


Lake Tahoe For All Seasons

Lake Tahoe
This is one of my favorite images from Lake Tahoe. It proves the point that braving bad weather can increase your photographic “luck.” On this occasion, I was leading a photo workshop and nearly everyone canceled due to the bad forecast. The few people who did decide to brave the weather ended up wet and cold, but with an amazing break in the clouds right at sunset.

With golden aspen in the fall, fresh snow blanketing the mountains in winter, wildflower-covered beaches in the spring and sparkling blue water in the summer, Lake Tahoe is a photographer’s paradise in every season. For photographers willing to hike or ski miles for a single shot, as well as those wanting to shoot from the side of the road, Tahoe offers a lifetime of subjects that change with the weather and the seasons.

Winter is by far my favorite season to photograph Lake Tahoe. While the ski resorts may be packed, some of the best locations along the shore can be completely deserted. The surrounding mountains are covered with snow, and the lake is nearly free of boats. Winter storms help to wash beaches clean of footprints, and cold temperatures add frost on top of patterns in the sand. Add in the chance of fresh, untouched snow covering the beaches and dramatic low-angled light, and you have a true landscape photographer’s paradise.

Lake Tahoe
When low lake levels and late spring rains combine, it’s possible to find huge fields of lupine on the exposed shores of the lake.

While spring rains provide a chance to photograph new growth around the entire basin, the most popular locations are the fields of lupine growing on the beaches during years of low water. Historically these fields of flowers existed on a small scale, but years of drought in California have led to lower lake levels and thus larger beaches. The last few years, these blooms have been particularly great and have become an internet phenomenon. While wildflowers can be found all around the lake, the largest concentration is on the beaches along its northwest corner. Come in June or July, pack your widest lens and pray for clouds at sunset.

Summer is the slowest season for landscape photography around Tahoe. Days of cloudless, hazy skies and crowds of people make shooting around the lake more challenging. But this is also the season for high mountain wildflowers—escape the crowds around the lake by following the Tahoe Rim Trail to many great meadows filled with wildflowers and dramatic views of the lake. Summer also is the best time to photograph thunderstorms over the lake in the afternoon. The general rule of thumb is if there are building clouds before 10 a.m., you have a good chance of an afternoon thunderstorm.

Lake Tahoe
This summer view from Emerald Bay includes the Tahoe Gal paddle wheeler as part of the scene. Including the classic tour boat gives a sense of scale and helps to provide balance with the dramatic blue water of the lake.

Many photographers consider fall to be the best season in the Tahoe basin because of the unique mix of colorful aspen, views of the lake, wildlife and potential early winter storms. Nearly every creek leading into the lake is lined with aspen, but the largest concentration is along the southwest shore. While there are many aspen in this area, the most popular is the Taylor Creek area because of its run of non-native kokanee salmon. Plan to explore this location right after shooting the sunrise elsewhere, and you will avoid the crowds and find the best light. With luck, you may even have a chance to photograph black bears feeding on the salmon before the crowds arrive and scare them away. In addition to the lakeside aspen groves, with some exploration you can even find a few higher elevation locations where it is possible to see the lake and fall colors in the same shot.

Lake Tahoe
After exploring the classic locations, photographers with more time would be well served to look through topographic maps of trails and back roads. You never know what gem you may find at the end of hike.

If all this photographic potential doesn’t get you excited about planning a trip to Lake Tahoe, then perhaps good restaurants, easy lodging, casinos and close access to the Reno airport may be enough to convince you. In addition to great photography, the Tahoe area also offers many activities for your non-photographer traveling companions that will keep them happy while you adventure around the lake with your camera. With so much to do in the Tahoe basin, the question becomes not which season is best but rather which season you’re willing to miss. For many photographers, their first trip is only an introduction that keeps them coming back to Lake Tahoe for years to come.

Key Photo Locations Near Lake Tahoe

By far the most-photographed location at Lake Tahoe is Emerald Bay at sunrise. This classic location can be good year-round, especially when a storm is clearing, but spring is the best because the waterfall on Eagle Creek will be roaring and makes a great foreground. Follow California State Route 89 along the west shore of the lake until you reach the bottom of the hill overlooking Emerald Bay. Park in the roadside lot (Eagle Lake Trailhead), walk across the street, and follow the path down to the viewpoint next to the waterfall. Be very careful on this path—it can be super icy from blowing spray, and I have seen several cameras meet their demise here.

Lake Tahoe
This view of Emerald Bay at sunrise is one of the most classic locations around the lake. Be here early and you may have a chance to catch a predawn glow in the clouds.

Another classic location is Sand Harbor at sunset. This is possibly the most popular beach at Lake Tahoe. It has wide expanses of sand as well as piles of boulders that make strong foregrounds against dramatic sunset skies. While Sand Harbor offers perhaps the most accessible sunset shooting on the lake, it is also very popular and parking can be a challenge in the summer. Visit during winter, and you may have the entire beach to yourself at sunset and, with luck, untracked snowy beaches.

Once you have explored these popular locations and are ready branch out, it is good to understand how the weather and light comes into the Tahoe basin to aid in your exploration. Storms typically come in from the west and often break up over the lake toward the end of the day. Shooting clearing storms at sunset from the eastern shore tends to be the best, because the sun is setting behind them to the west as they break up. Building storms are typically best shot at sunrise along the western shore because the light is coming from the east and will often light the clouds.

Lake Tahoe
Shooting a clearing storm from the east shore should be on every photographer’s dream list. Using a circular polarizer to remove reflections in the water, I was able to give a feeling of depth to the image by getting close to the foreground with my 16-35mm lens.

These are only general guidelines, because Lake Tahoe has a strange way of creating its own weather patterns. I can’t count the number of times I have been set up for sunrise or sunset only to wish I had been on the other side of the lake because the clouds broke in a strange way. The best advice is to be out with your camera no matter how bad the weather, and be ready to move quickly, because conditions can change rapidly.

The post Lake Tahoe For All Seasons appeared first on Outdoor Photographer.

Source: Outdoor Photography
Lake Tahoe For All Seasons


Spanish Fashion Magazine

Spanish men’s magazine Hercules Magazine takes a light touch for spring in a new issue with four covers by Amit, Alessio Boni, Thomas Giddings, and Bruce Weber bordered in a gentle pastel pink. Themed around “A New Light,” the magazine offers a considered take on the new season, from Giddings’s cover feature on actor Karl Glusman to Jan Lehner and Mitchell Belk’s moody feature starring Tim Dibble. Boni teams up with Francesco Sourigues for a poetic exploration of rising gender-bending designer Palomo Spain, while Benjamin Vnuk and Gabriella Norberg find a retro appeal to the season’s prints. Amit and Pau Avia’s street cast story brings a classic eye to a cast of striking individuals, and Louis Bauvir loses himself in Serge Leblon and Benoit Martinengo’s story.

Take an exclusive first look at the new issue below.

Marcos del Río | Photographer – Alessio Boni | Stylist – Francesco Sourigues (De Facto)

Photographer – Amit | Stylist – Pau Avia

Photographer – Bruce Weber

Karl Glusman | Photographer – Thomas Giddings (Creative and Partners) | Stylist – David Vivirido

Tim Dibble | Photographer – Jan Lehner (New York: Webber Represents , London: Webber Represents) | Stylist – Mitchell Belk (Bryant Artists)

Tim Dibble | Photographer – Jan Lehner (New York: Webber Represents , London: Webber Represents) | Stylist – Mitchell Belk (Bryant Artists)

John Zuanich | Photographer – Bruce Weber

Alton Mason | Photographer – Benjamin Vnuk (New York: ArtList, Stockholm: LUNDLUND, Paris: ArtList Paris) | Stylist – Gabriella Norberg

Alton Mason | Photographer – Benjamin Vnuk (New York: ArtList, Stockholm: LUNDLUND, Paris: ArtList Paris) | Stylist – Gabriella Norberg

Luis Toledo | Photographer – Matthieu Lavanchy | Stylist – David Vivirido

Luis Toledo | Photographer – Matthieu Lavanchy | Stylist – David Vivirido

Karl Glusman | Photographer – Thomas Giddings (Creative and Partners) | Stylist – David Vivirido

Karl Glusman | Photographer – Thomas Giddings (Creative and Partners) | Stylist – David Vivirido

Marcos del Río | Photographer – Alessio Boni | Stylist – Francesco Sourigues (De Facto)

Marcos del Río | Photographer – Alessio Boni | Stylist – Francesco Sourigues (De Facto)

Left: Diego Uceda | Right: Juan Jesus Troyano and Marcos del Río | Photographer – Alessio Boni | Stylist – Francesco Sourigues (De Facto)

Photographer – Amit | Stylist – Pau Avia

Photographer – Amit | Stylist – Pau Avia

Louis Bauvir | Photographer – Serge Leblon (Management + Artists) | Stylist – Benoit Martinengo

Louis Bauvir | Photographer – Serge Leblon (Management + Artists) | Stylist – Benoit Martinengo

Liam Samuels | Photographer – Stas Komarovski (New York: D + V Management, London: D + V Management ) | Stylist – Miguel Enamorado (Style Departments)

Left: Luis Cañete | Right: Elioth Vera | Photographer – Gorka Postigo | Stylist – Nono Vázquez

Left: Luis Mba | Right: Marcos del Río | Photographer – Gorka Postigo | Stylist – Nono Vázquez

Left: Marcos del Río | Right: Oscar Kindelan | Photographer – Gorka Postigo | Stylist – Nono Vázquez


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