You Can’t Fight as a Photographer Without an ‘FU Fund’


This post is by Mike Kelley from PetaPixel


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When it comes to negotiations, as a photographer (or any freelance artist, for that matter) you’ve got to master the art of not being emotionally invested in the outcome — something that is nearly impossible to do. But without it, you’ll never be able to break free of difficult clients and underpaid gigs.

What is an FU Fund?

The “f**k you fund” isn’t something you say to your clients, or tell them that you have. It’s essentially a slush fund of money that you have in your bank account, under a mattress, in Bitcoin, or somewhere, that is enough money

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Has Social Media Turned Photography Into a Contest With No Closing Date?


This post is by Andy Hutchinson from PetaPixel


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Being a photographer used to be pretty simple. You had a camera, you had a subject you liked photographing, and you used to go out with your camera and photograph the subject you liked. And apart from perhaps showing off the occasional print at the local camera club to a group of like-minded tragics, that’s probably about as far as it went. Then social media arrived and, as with so many aspects of this modern connected life of ours, everything changed.

Here is a photograph of a globally recognisable icon. Did I take this photograph for Internet points because everyone

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My Nightmare with USPS Insurance in Shipping a Camera Lens


This post is by Michael Roach from PetaPixel


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Photography is amazing, but it does require gear. I recently moved from Canon to Sony, so I had to offload a camera body, lenses, flashes, and triggers. I purchased out-of-pocket insurance on all of my gear packages just to have some peace-of-mind.

I sent the last piece of my Canon kit, my awesome Tamron 70-200mm f/2.8 (a009), on January 10th. This was my first serious photography lens (costing over $500), which I originally purchased used. I rolled the actual lens up in bubble wrap and secured it with tape. I then used a slightly larger box and filled in

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Canon Was Blinded by Sony and the ‘Mirrorless Revolution’


This post is by Usman Dawood from PetaPixel


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Based on a number of conversations I’ve had and a few minor polls I’ve conducted, most people seem to believe that Canon made the right decision by producing a mirrorless system. Now my sample size is quite small so this may or may not be a true reflection, but I have an opposing view to this. I firmly believe that Canon made the wrong choice by developing a new mirrorless system with a new mount.

I’ve long believed that Canon should have continued with the EF mount. I get the feeling that Canon panicked a little and decided to rush into mirrorless to chase after Sony. In

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Here’s an Explanation of PPA’s New Pro Photographer Certification Process


This post is by Audrey Wancket from PetaPixel


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Hello, everyone. I’m Audrey Wancket, President of Professional Photographers of America (PPA), and this article is a response to recent reaction to PPA’s new “Certified Professional Photographer” certification process.

While we believe the reaction to the changes in the certification process are expected, I do believe the examples and thoughts being tossed around in the recent posts here are founded in misinformation. I wanted to help explain the changes in PPA’s certification process for those who are interested in real information.

I think it is important for you to know up front that the changes come from the recommendations of

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Why I Am Staying with APS-C


This post is by Bob Locher from PetaPixel


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After a many year hiatus, I returned to photography as an avocation. In years past, I had been a semi-pro, using primarily Leica gear and film, of course at full frame. In those days the only significant half frame camera was the Olympus, which in spite of the smaller but more useful format gave a good account of itself. It did not hurt that Olympus glass was at that time some of the best coming from Japan, especially for snappy contrast.

In any case, I got burned out. I was working in the photographic hardware manufacturing industry and got to

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My Journey to 28mm in Street Photography


This post is by Tomer Vaknin from PetaPixel


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For many years, the only lens focal length I felt comfortable with when doing street photography was a 50mm.

Over the years, I’ve owned several high-end 50mm lenses for Leica M bodies, including the Noctilux and the amazing APO-Summicron.

I was quite happy with these lenses for a while, but I started to feel confined and that my work process was sort of automated in a way.

Unlike previous times in which I just changed from one 50mm lens to another, this time a bigger change had to happen — one that would challenge me and drastically change the way

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I Am Certifiably Confused About PPA’s ‘Certified Professional Photographer’


This post is by Missy Mwac from PetaPixel


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I don’t mean to step on any toes, but… deep breath… here we go…

Dear PPA,

A couple of weeks ago, I asked to sit down with your top brass and discuss what is happening with our beloved PPA (Professional Photographers of America) over some pie. Who doesn’t like pie, right? It was going to be a long conversation and, well, difficult discussions just seem to go better with pie. Granted, the request was made via a Facebook post, so you probably didn’t really take me seriously.

That’s okay — I assure you, you aren’t the first.

And

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Photojournalism Through the Eyes of a Monk


This post is by Monk Theologos of Vatopaidi from PetaPixel


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Being a monk who has photographed monastic communities from many years now, many people have asked me if I have something to share from my experience. Well, there isn’t much.

First of all, one must know that he doesn’t know anything. Only in this way can one stay on the constant path of progress and not harm anyone. People who are overly confident often harm others, many times even without noticing.

We must have a correct relationship with our subjects, with ourselves and with the outside world.

The first rule of thumb especially when we talk about our subjects is:

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The NYT’s Poor Caption and Dubious Image Selection of Hope Hicks


This post is by Allen Murabayashi from PetaPixel


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Unlike most types of photography, photojournalism abides a more stringent set of ethical guidelines because truth is paramount to accurate reporting. Many newspapers enforce their own ethical journalism guidelines, which tend to focus on retouching and the use of photo illustration techniques (e.g. compositing, timelapse, panoramic, etc).

One often overlooked aspect is accurate captioning. After all, many photos are ambiguous without written context. Deception of this sort is often used by authoritarian regimes and disinformation peddlers. Which makes The New York Times’ use of Tom Brenner’s photo of Hope Hicks all the more frustrating.

On May 23,

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Why I’ll Never Be a Wedding Photographer


This post is by Clare Harding from PetaPixel


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I have seen so many posts across various websites and Facebook groups this week all centered around one theme: wedding photography. Wedding season is well and truly upon us and I guess that everyone who’s getting married this summer has already booked their photographer. But their guests who are getting married next year or the year after? They’re the ones probably starting to think about who’s going to photograph their big day. And it’s a huge decision to make.

So why this article? What has riled me up so much that I feel the need to write about it?! Well

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Light Formulation: Statement of an Artist


This post is by Anton Orlov from PetaPixel


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I always resisted writing artist statements and bios. In school, that part of every assignment or exhibition was the most agonizing. It felt overly simplistic to just describe what the viewer was about to encounter, or why objects or abstract shapes, making my specific image or groups of images, were presented in this way or another.

It seemed that by assigning it a set number of combinations of words and letters, designed to invoke a set of associations or emotions, and qualifying and quantifying it that way, I would be doing a disservice to my work, by not letting it

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Spark Conservation with Backyard Photography


This post is by Danae Wolfe from PetaPixel


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I’m not your typical conservation photographer. Many conservation photographers and filmmakers spend their careers traveling to infrequently traversed crevices of our earth in pursuit of untold stories of nature and wildlife. I am not so lucky to have traveled the globe, but I have experienced worlds unknown to most. I photograph bugs and share their stories in hopes of changing public perception of insects and spiders.

I didn’t always love bugs. In fact, my childhood was steeped in fear of anything with six or eight legs. I have a few terrible childhood memories of which spiders were the star. Those

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How I Switched to Sony (And Took My Best Friend Along With Me)


This post is by Ellie Cotton from PetaPixel


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It’s time to confess. I’ve been converted to Sony! But there’s more. Somehow I converted my best friend, wedding photographer Charlotte Palazzo, at the same time.

I’ve been a Nikon fangirl for more than a decade. I absolutely loved my most recent camera, the Nikon D750. The low light capabilities, resolution and the relatively small size of the camera are perfect for family, birth, newborn and also commercial photography. I really couldn’t fault the D750. Had I dropped it in a swimming pool or something similarly idiotic — which wouldn’t have surprised my husband in the slightest — I

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An Insider’s Look at a Photo Workshop Disaster


This post is by Grace Burt from PetaPixel


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I wrote an article in 2017 about bad photography workshops, and I made a promise to the community that I would never speak at, attend, or help promote a workshop again unless it was one I believed in wholeheartedly. I promised to do my due diligence when accepting speaking engagements and I promised that the events I did agree to speak at would be of the highest standards.

As an educator and coordinator of my own workshops, I have set a very high bar for educational events, and that is why I am devastated to admit publicly that I

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Why Photographers Aren’t Getting Paid


This post is by Michael Zhang from PetaPixel


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Photographer Jessica Kobeissi made this 5-minute video that has hit a nerve with many of her 1.3+ million followers on YouTube. She shares thoughts on why it’s difficult for photographers to get paid fairly for work these days, arguing that by undercutting each other and working for little or no money, some photographers are lowering the bar for everyone else in the industry.

Kobeissi says she was motivated to record the video after hearing of a photographer who was approached by a local business to shoot a fashion show for free. After rejecting the “offer,” the business got in

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Are You an Ethical Photographer?


This post is by Allen Murabayashi from PetaPixel


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A group of boys in Baraboo, WI assembled for a junior prom photo and posed with a Nazi salute. One of the boys posted the image to Twitter with the caption “We even got the black kid to throw it up.” In the midst of public outrage, it was revealed that a professional photographer not only took the image but directed them to “wave goodbye.”

Ethics describes a system of principles that informs concepts of right and wrong, as well as individual and communal rights and responsibilities. As much as we’d like to believe that there is a

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Photographers, We Need to Put Nature First


This post is by Dave Koch from PetaPixel


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What is the most important thing for a photographer? The simple and easy answer is the camera, or something closely related to it (like tripods or lights). And for many photographers that might be true… but not for a nature or landscape photographer. What we prize most, what we need most is uncompromising vistas of land, views unobstructed by the hand of man.

We can always buy a new camera or get a tripod fixed, but we cannot reverse the damage of a graffiti artist on rocks or even a careless hiker on cryptobiotic crusts in Arches National Park or

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Scientific Errors in Those Nat Geo Milky Way Photos


This post is by Adrien Mauduit from PetaPixel


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The night sky offers an unlimited source of markers (e.g. stars, constellations, Milky Way, etc.) that never lie about the time of year and location in the world you shot a night sky picture from. You don’t even need to be a professional astronomer or to double-check RAW files to prove it.

Tools like Stellarium or the StarWalk app can help you verify your point within seconds.

National Geographic is at the center of a manipulated photo controversy this week over an article featuring photos by photographer Beth Moon. Moon gave this statement in response:

I am late

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9 of My Worst Habits as a Landscape Photographer


This post is by Mark Denney from PetaPixel


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We all have them, some more than others, but one thing we all have in common is a desire to eliminate them. What I’m referring to are bad habits. I don’t want to speak for anyone else, but in this video and article, I discuss the 9 worst habits that have negatively impacted my landscape photography over the years.

#1. Quick Edits

When I get back from a shoot I always download the images and back them up, but unfortunately I don’t stop there. My excitement usually gets the best of me and before I know it I’ve reviewed all

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