Beware This New Free Drone Scam on Instagram

Beware. There’s a new scam on Instagram that preys on people who would like a free camera drone. I was messaged by a scam account, and here’s how it works. The account that messaged me was @birdviewdrones. There are several other accounts with a similar name along the lines of name.birdviewdrones with similar profile names. Almost none of them even have pictures of said drone on their profile. The account will message you saying you with the following text:
Hi [Username]! Congratulations, you are selected for our 3 week beta testing round. To participate and claim FREE drone, open
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Why Camera Gear Costs What It Costs

In the last couple of weeks, my little brand, 3 Legged Thing, launched a brand new Universal L Bracket, the QR11. For the most part, the response has been overwhelmingly positive. Then, somebody sent me a link to a well-known forum, where a conversation had started about the press release for the QR11. The comments were almost wholly negative with more than one contributor stating “You can buy this from insert website name for $7″ or “I got one from China for $5 and it works just fine.” Fantastic. What you actually did is perpetuate a cycle of
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Don’t Buy the Sigma 14mm f/1.8 for Astrophotography: How to Get Better Photos for Less Money

I’ve seen a lot of posts and comments raving about how f/1.8 on a 14mm lens is revolutionary for anyone wanting to shoot astrophotography. Yes, having a larger aperture will collect more light, but you’re still limited in the exposure length because of the Earth’s rotation. To counteract that, you can get something called a tracker, which automatically rotates your camera to match the earth, and keeps your stars from trailing. The Sigma 14mm f/1.8 gives you a 1 1/3-stop advantage over the Rokinon 14mm f/2.8, which means you can get an exposure that is
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How To Build A Media Juggernaut w/ Piera Gelardi

Piera is the co-founder of Refinery29, one of the most important and influential lifestyle editorial companies on the internet with millions of visitors a day from just about every corner of the planet. It’s one of those classic entrepreneur stories, starting with a few friends in a cramped makeshift office who had a ton of passion but not a lot of experience – they’ve had some ups and downs, made some pivots, but here they are – they’re still standing, stronger than ever, and they’ve unquestionably made their mark on our culture with a voice that’s distinctly different from that Continue reading "How To Build A Media Juggernaut w/ Piera Gelardi"

Photographers, Register Your D*mn Copyright

Photographer Max Dubler struck a nerve last week with an article documenting the theft of one of his downhill skateboarding images. After finding a skateboard brand using one of his photos without authorization, he did as he always does: he contacted the offending party and requested a payment of $25 for social media usage. Dubler’s straightforward, non-confrontational strategy has worked in the past, but not this time. The offending brand responded: “Seriously? We don’t pay for Instagram shares and we always give proper credit, I mean, who pays for Instagram shares lol. I will take it off if you wish
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Dear Photography Workshop and Conference Organizers…

Dear photography workshop and conference organizers, we need to have a chat. There is a lot of nonsense going on in the workshop world, and it needs to stop. Taking someone’s money and promising that you can help their business is no joke, and it needs to be taken seriously! Every week we hear a story of yet another workshop filled with damaging business advice, dishonest marketing, or physical safety issues, and with each new story we hear, we start to feel a personal responsibility to say something. To use our voice to try to help put an end to
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No, You Can’t Use My Photos On Your Brand’s Instagram For Free

My name is Max Dubler, and I am a professional photographer who has been working full time in downhill skateboarding for the last several years. I am a well-known person within this little niche: I started an influential website with my friends, was on staff for the only downhill magazine since its first issue, have written extensively about downhill skate safety, and have been hired by almost every major downhill skate brand to shoot photos. Lately, in an effort to get new riders excited about skating, I have departed from my usual policy of only releasing the most technically
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Tunisair Banned Cameras… and Then Stole Mine

On Saturday July 1st, 2017, £600 worth of cameras and equipment were stolen from inside my rucksack, itself packed into a larger suitcase, during a Tunisair flight from Tunis to London Heathrow while they were checked into the hold of the plane. Like any discerning photographer, or indeed sensible human being, the idea of checking my cameras in rather than keeping them with me in hand luggage was unthinkable, but as it turns out, I didn’t have a choice. What I wasn’t aware of until moments before check in was that as of March 21st, 2017, new restrictions on electrical
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Why Photographers Fail

Recently there has been a spate of very sad, and ultimately defeatist articles decrying the “death of photography.” We have no shortage of examples. Seriously. In all their pain and detailed examples of how the art and business of photography have been “ruined” (their words), I can find little to no examples of the basic, most important reason that photographers are falling behind. And that is: photographers are wildly devotedly, happily, and ecstatically in LOVE with the processes of photography. Like any devoted partner, they see the relationship as sacrosanct and the most important in their lives. And they
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Why B&W is Still the Favorite of Street Photographers

Black-and-white still remains the photographer’s favorite for street photographers, and with very good reason. Where in other genres monochrome has become a niche look, street photography is different. Why does B&W remain the favorite choice of street photographers, and are there logical reasons to go for it? Black-and-white was naturally the first choice for photographers of old due to technical restrictions. Film wasn’t able to showcase color, and it took a long time until more and more street photographers explored new opportunities for color work. Nonetheless, it seems most modern street photography photos are still in B&W. Modern technology is
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Why I Swapped My ‘Pro’ DSLR for the Cheapest One Available

My name is Ion Paciu, and I’m a photographer based in London. I recently purchased a new camera kit with a camera body and lenses. However, it wasn’t an “upgrade” — it was, in fact, a “downgrade.” I got myself a $500 Canon SL1/100D, which is the smallest, cheapest, and lightest entry-level DSLR on the market today (Canon says it’s “for beginners”. Well, we will see). Along with the body, I picked up an entry-level 18-55mm f/5.6 lens kit lens, as well as a 55-250mm f/5.6 kit entry-level telephoto lens. Now, you may be wondering
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Why I’ll Never Use FedEx Again to Ship My Camera Gear

My name is Marc Weisberg, and I’m a luxury home photographer based in Southern California. This is an article about why I’ll never use FedEx again to ship my camera gear to a workshop, as well as what you need to know before ever shipping camera gear. It’s the story of how FedEx utterly screwed up my delivery and cost me over $1,000 to get new gear and re-printing of all my workshop materials.

My Camera Gear Shipping Horror Story

The story begins in Irvine, California, at the FedEx delivery hub. I was teaching a Luxury Real Estate Workshop
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I Got Two Free Rolleiflex TLR Cameras From a Kind Internet Stranger

It’s not every day that you receive free stuff from strangers on the Internet. (Much less, stuff you actually want). I figure that something like this should be commended… Several weeks ago I had commented on a Reddit r/history post before heading off to bed for the night. It was fairly popular, even making /r/all, I believe; something to do with a camera — a Rollei — that had belonged to Eleanor or Kermit Roosevelt. It belonged to someone in the First Family, in any case. More importantly though, some questions were raised about the camera’s operation. Not wanting
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How Photographing an Abandoned Hotel Cost Me $2,800

Unfortunately, this story is not a joke. On the 20th of June 2017, I transferred €2,365.67 (~$2,702) to a lawyer in Austria because I photographed an abandoned hotel in Austria in 2013 and put those photos online without permission. In this article I will tell you exactly what happened and how it happened. In an attempt to not “poke the bear,” I’ve removed some of the personal information in the letters I will be sharing with you and I won’t be sharing any of the photos I took back then. The photo at the top of this blog was
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Big Dumb Button: Why My Hasselblad is Priceless to Me

My wife Sara and I used to have this running joke leading up to her birthday each year. Each year I’d say, “Honey! What would you like for your birthday?,” and she would reply “I’d like a Hasselblad”. Usually with a big smile on her face, in a wink-wink-nudge-nudge kind of way. Then I’d say “Ha ha, no, seriously, what would you like?” and we’d both laugh and move on to more serious things. Hasselblad. The 500C/M. Man. That camera. It’s like the Rolls Royce of cameras. It would send shivers down our spines and we’d get all
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R.I.P., Richard Benson: Photographer, Printer, and Educator

I think the first time I actually met Richard “Chip” Benson was at Wellesley College in the 80s. It was at an opening reception and Chip and Lee Friedlander were being honored as they had both just received MacArthur grants. I knew the Bensons were from Newport, RI and were friends of my sister and brother-in-law Marc Harrison, an industrial designer and chair of the ID Department at RISD. Richard Benson died June 22, 2017 at the age of 73. From time to time I’d hear that Chip had done something extraordinary and knew he was printing his 8 x
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R.I.P., Richard Benson: Photographer, Printer, and Educator

I think the first time I actually met Richard “Chip” Benson was at Wellesley College in the 80s. It was at an opening reception and Chip and Lee Friedlander were being honored as they had both just received MacArthur grants. I knew the Bensons were from Newport, RI and were friends of my sister and brother-in-law Marc Harrison, an industrial designer and chair of the ID Department at RISD. Richard Benson died June 22, 2017 at the age of 73. From time to time I’d hear that Chip had done something extraordinary and knew he was printing his 8 x
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Visual Engineering is Where Photo Art Meets Technology

In its best form, art can lead major innovations in science and technology. The earliest photographers were more like scientists and chemists than artists. Much of their image making process revolved around the technical process of exposing an image correctly. The subject matter in front of the camera was in many ways less important than the process of taking a technically correct photograph. Nonetheless, these early photographic technologists had a major role in pushing the art and science of photography forward. Technologists who are artists are capable of pushing the boundaries of technical innovation while also creating interesting visuals. When
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How to Make the Jump from Amateur to Professional Photographer

What makes a pro photographer a pro? How do you do it? Do you just wake up one day and the photo gods anoint you a pro? Do you have to pass the pro photography exam and get some sort of certificate? I studied photojournalism at San Francisco State University where I learned a lot about the technical side of photography, ethics, work ethics, and storytelling. What I didn’t learn much about was the business the side of things. I knew in my second year of college I wanted to be professional photographer but I had no clue how to
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21 Signs You’re a Cocky Photographer

Over the years, I’ve joked frequently with my best friend Marc and my brother about things that are cocky in life. We sort of have this ongoing dialog pointing out cocky things and cocky people in the world, which is pretty cocky of us. They’ve also given me a lot of s**t since I became a photographer a decade ago. They point out how cocky our industry is and poke fun at me for my share of cocky moments, like having an army of scarfs, my bio picture, and much, much more. Typically you think of athletes or celebrities
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