Random Excellence: Ian Ruhter


Photo by Ian Ruhter

The original is a mammoth 27x35-inch modern tintype of Monument Valley by Ian Ruhter. Ian is a former commercial photographer who has devoted himself to archaic process and sometimes calls himself an alchemist. He exposes sheets of tin up to five feet wide, working inside his camera. Each of his largest exposures requires a full day's work. The process creates imperfections, but, he says, "you get these mistakes that are so beautiful that you wouldn’t change them if you could." This photograph is titled "John Wayne's Special Spot." It is known to have been
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Fujifilm Instax Mini 9 launches with selfie mirror and close-up lens attachment

Fujifilm has announced the Instax Mini 9, a new instant camera that has launched in five colors: Lime Green, Flamingo Pink, Smoky White, Ice Blue, and Cobalt Blue. The Instax Mini 9 builds upon the company's Instax Mini 8, bringing with it a selfie mirror as well as a new close-up lens attachment enabling photographers to snap photos as close as 35cm / 14in. Fujifilm says the 'popular' features from the previous model are rolled over into the Instax Mini 9, including auto exposure. The camera chooses the optimal brightness setting for any given snapshot, highlighting the chosen setting Continue reading "Fujifilm Instax Mini 9 launches with selfie mirror and close-up lens attachment"

Here’s Why Script Supervisors Are the ‘Secret Ninjas’ of Film Production

The script supervisor is the glue that holds the entire production together. Being a script supervisor is the best path to directing. At least, that's what Bob Byington swore when he sat down with us at SXSW 2017 for a podcast last week. The sad truth, however, is that not many people actually know what the job entails. Perhaps that's because there's just so much to it. "We are a department of one," Eve Butterly explains in the SXSW panel Did We See That? The Role of the Script Supervisor. The Continue reading "Here’s Why Script Supervisors Are the ‘Secret Ninjas’ of Film Production"

I Built a Panoramic Photo Rig Made of 6 Nikon DSLRs, and It’s Awesome

My name is Paul Bruins and I am hopelessly addicted to panoramas. It has now been 48 hours since my last fix. If I don’t shoot up at least one fresh panorama per week, I start to experience severe withdrawal symptoms. I shot my first multi-image panorama way back in 1982, with a small instamatic camera. It was a panorama of the “Bloukrans” bridge under construction, which was too large to fit into the tiny viewfinder of my camera, and thus required multiple photos to capture in its entirety. After clumsily sticking the prints together with scotch-tape I was instantly
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Video showing how to build your own lens calibration tool and a second covering top tips for travel

<a href="http://www.diyphotography.net/" >DIY Photography</a> has shared a pair of excellent videos. The first is about lens calibration and how to make your own DIY lens calibration solution. There are professional solutions you can purchase, such as <a href="https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/736849-REG/Datacolor_DC_SLC100_SpyderLensCal_Autofocus_Calibration_Aid.html/BI/771/KBID/1047" >Datacolor&rsquo;s SpyderLensCal</a>, which while highly regarded costs about $60 and could be overkill for someone who just needs to calibrate a few lenses once and be done with it.

If you&rsquo;d rather save your hard-earned money, <a href="https://www.youtube.com/user/CraftyCamsAndCo" >Crafty Cams</a> shows us how to make our own lens calibration tool. You don&rsquo;t need much, just a cardboard box and a...
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Sony World Photography Awards Open categories and National winners announced

The winners of the ten Open categories of the Sony World Photography Awards have been announced alongside National Award winners from 66 countries. The Open competition consists of ten themed categories so there are ten winners in total, each receiving a Sony a7 II kit, who will go on to compete for the overall prize of $5000 and a trip to the awards ceremony in London next month.
Once the 105,000 entries to the Open section had been judged in their themed categories the total entry was re-judged according to Continue reading "Sony World Photography Awards Open categories and National winners announced"

Panasonic Clears Up Rumor, Will Not ‘Dismantle’ Camera Division

Panasonic camera fans freaked out this week when a report in Japan’s largest business newspaper, The Nikkei Asian Review, claimed the company was going to “dismantle,” “scale back” and restructure its digital camera division. According to Panasonic, this is not entirely accurate. The original report was pretty blunt in its wording. It said:
Three other businesses units—digital cameras, private branch exchange telephone systems and optical disk drives—will be dismantled. Each will be scaled back and placed under the umbrella of other operations, with headcount to be reduced.
On the face of it, the news made sense. Camera sales aren’t
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Samsung planning to sell refurbished Galaxy Note 7 units

It's probably fair to say its Galaxy Note 7 flagship has been an absolute disaster for Samsung. After a number of devices caught fire Samsung eventually made the decision to discontinue the model and, after an internal investigation, announced that the fires had been caused by design and manufacturing errors on the Note 7 batteries.  In a press release, the South Korean company has now laid out how it will recycle and dispose of the hundreds of thousands of Note 7 units that had already been produced and partly sold. According to the statement, 'devices shall be considered Continue reading "Samsung planning to sell refurbished Galaxy Note 7 units"

Watch: Is Tarantino Feminist or Misogynist?

Are Quentin Tarantino's female characters empowered, or are they victims of brutality? It's no secret that Quentin Tarantino is a fan of the excess. Many of his eight features reach borderline cartoonlike absurdity in the way they employ violence, gore, and even language. If you were to sit him down and ask him why this was the case, he would probably answer that it's for comic effect, or that it's all in good fun. But when does this violence start to become a problem? Is it okay to show a woman Continue reading "Watch: Is Tarantino Feminist or Misogynist?"

6 Creative Portrait Photography Hacks in 2 Minutes

Ready for some rapid-fire DIY tips? A team of French photographers who goes by the moniker “Shootr” has put together a simple photo hacks video that offers a few creative ideas for your next portrait shoot. Let’s take these one at a time.

1. Tin Foil Background

Don’t have (or want to use) a standard portrait background? Try crumpling up and hanging some tin foil instead, and then add a colored gel to your flash. The pop of color will show up in the reflection in the tinfoil, and it makes for a unique, sparkly background.

2. Tin
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Watch: The Most Expensive Deleted Scenes Ever Filmed

These scenes, left on the cutting room floor, could have funded dozens of indie productions. Every writer and director is familiar with the phrase "kill your darlings." Originally attributed to William Faulkner, the adage has been widely quoted by every author under the sun. Stephen King, in his seminal text On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft, perhaps said it best: "Kill your darlings, kill your darlings. Even when it breaks your egocentric little scribbler’s heart, kill your darlings." In movies, scenes are cut for understandable reasons—they may become Continue reading "Watch: The Most Expensive Deleted Scenes Ever Filmed"

Shooting Hand-Held Documentary Photos with a 100MP Hasselblad

Photographer Ming Thein recently did something most photographers would consider crazy: he shot a dimly-lit festival, held in a cave outside Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, on a 100MP Hasselblad monster. The challenges of this kind of photography are obvious. The conventional wisdom regarding reportage/documentary photography like this is “the smaller the camera the better.” Not only will a small camera help you blend in and capture candid moments, it’ll also spare your back and shoulders since this kind of photography has you on your feet, moving around, and shooting hand-held for hours at a time. All of this is true,
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From over 105,000 images, 10 stand alone in Sony World Photography Awards Open competition

Ten photographers from around the world have been announced as the winners of the &ldquo;Open&rdquo; categories. The <a href="https://www.worldphoto.org/sony-world-photography-awards" >Sony World Photography Awards</a> includes Professional, Open, Youth, National Awards and Student Focus categories. The Open competition alone saw more than 105,000 entries across its ten categories.

The winners are as follows, and <a href="https://www.worldphoto.org/sony-world-photography-awards/winners-galleries/2017/open/winners/2017-open-competition-winners" >you can see their work here</a>.

                Tim Cornbill (United Kingdom)

                Jianguo Gong (China)

                Lise Johansson...
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Meet Michael McCoy, the Veteran Who Fights PTSD with Photography

Michael McCoy, at age 34, has had two tours in Iraq over five years with the United States Army, and spent time at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Bethesda, MD. He was medically discharged from the Army in 2008, and has been receiving treatment for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). “During his hospitalization, he discovered documentary photography and from that moment on it has been instrumental in helping him deal with his struggle,” says artist Jamel Shabazz, one of 12 experts who was asked by Time’s LightBox to pick 12 African American Photographers You Should Follow Right
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Watch: How to Light a Car Commercial

Who ever thought selling cars could be this complicated? We've all seen them: shiny cars flying through nature landscapes, promising simultaneously the dream of freedom and the dream of comfort. But what role does the cinematographer play? Bill Bennett, ASC spent a day with students breaking down his process of lighting for car commercials. Using a scaled-down car model, Bennett and his student crew use the following tools to create the effect: Read More

Panasonic GH5 Live Event Wednesday

GH5 Tomorrow at 1 p.m. Eastern time B&H Photo is holding a live event about the new Panasonic GH5. The panel will consist of filmmaker and music video maker Jacki Huntington, Documentary filmmaker Griffin Hammond, photographer and filmmaker David Flores, YouTube filmmaker Lok Cheung, and Sean Robinson from Panasonic's Lumix Luminaries team.  Mainly of interest to videographers and photographers who also shoot video, a primary feature of the forthcoming GH5 for still photographers is "6K PHOTO," which allows superfast video-speed capture of stills image bursts with image quality of 6000x3000 pixel resolution, or about 18 MP. Here's the link
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