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Live Show Recap: Best of 2016

Well guys, this was a crazy one. Justin is in California so the show is a bit… slapdash. We lose the stream a few times in the first 20 minutes, but once we realize Skype was to blame, it gets back on track and stays there.

This week we reviewed your best photos of 2016! And we got some awesome submissions. 

So we’re not sure if we’re doing the show next week, but whenever we’re back we’re taking submissions on the topic “Slice of Life.” You can hear Chelsea’s description of what that is here.

We get into your submissions here, and I’ll highlight Tony and Chelsea’s favorites below:

  • ¬†“this looks like a wormhole or some futuristic anus, and I really like that”
  • happy baby
  • Kyle killin’ it, as always
  • lovely portrait
  • “oh my gosh, this is the craziest sea gull I’ve ever seen”
  • juvie praying mantis
  • single-light portrait
  • “drummers like to put blankets in the base drum in case they get cold”
  • Jefferson memorial
  • Horseshoe bend
  • great timing

Chelsea has a cool llama shirt.

Our photographer friend Max has a YouTube channel and is giving away a drone. Find him at sdp.io/Max. 

This insane underwater photo won the National Geographic wildlife photo of the year. Congrats to Greg Lecoeur.

Now to chit-chat! Our favorite segment where you make dumb/mean/funny comments on our videos and we reply.

  • “on our best gear of 2016 video, which was optional to view, by the way…” we’re the worst gear of 2016
  • dropping shits is funny, killing people with drones is not
  • DaddyPRyan, maybe we’ll come to New Zealand if you had a better name
  • Chelsea is always bored

Now we look at a viewer portfolio! LotaLove Photography. Good job with the “booking for 2017” header, contact page and pricing page. “I’m just mad as your wife now.” I would change the formatting so you see full screen images. Lovely shots, just need to display them better. Well done, Charlotte!

Now we get back to your photos, if Tony would stop jinxing the show:

I texted Tony some of your questions and Chelsea pulls some from the comments:

  • rainy day photography tips? Take pictures of your pets, make a mini studio and try product photography, try indoor projects like one of these.
  • what’s your photo management process? When do you delete photos? Don’t delete photos while you’re shooting wildlife, or you’ll miss a moment. It’s easier to do on the computer so you can see everything big, unless you have a 5DSR with those huge files.

More photos:

A big discussion of Ken Rockwell. Give the guy a break.

Some more questions from you:

  • any thoughts on an organized Instagram feed? Cool, but no.
  • are you self taught? What books did you learn from? Tony took some classes, but is mostly self taught. Same for Chelsea, but has learned a lot from art classes.

Ok, we glance through the thumbnails and pull out the ones that stand out at the end here:

Final questions?

  • can we make videos about real estate and product photography? Yes, Tony wants to work with photographers in genres he doesn’t usually cover.
  • when is the best time to use the different priority modes on your camera? Shutter for wildlife or sports, aperture for portraits, manual for shooting in the studio or when you have time to mess with your settings, but still using auto ISO.
  • we disappoint many dogs and many people

And that’s a show! Subscribe to our channel or periodically check sdp.io/live¬†to see when our next show is, we’ll be looking at your slice of life shots. Thanks for sticking around! Happy new year to us all.

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Beginner Photography: Best of 2016

Happy holidays! This post is going to be a look back on my photography journey so far this year, as we’ll be reviewing your best of 2016 photos for the live show this week.¬†

So, this might not be much of a dramatic transformation as I only started this series 4 months ago, but I can certainly say I’ve tackled new projects and stretched myself. I mean, I was second shooter on a wedding! That’s crazy. I found out which genres I’m not great at (landscapes, still life) and some that I was surprisingly good at (spooky, wedding, street). I started shooting with a borrowed Olympus E-M10¬†with a Lumix 14-42mm lens,¬†which felt like a revelation after using my Samsung smart phone for so long, but now I am feeling limited by my gear again.

I found that I need to work on mastering my camera settings. I still rely on automatic mode a bit too much, I don’t nail focus as often as I’d like. I’m better at finding my shots rather than creating them, I could use to plan more.

So I’m going to post my favorite images from these past few months below,¬†in chronological order:

Adventure: 

This shot was taken with my phone, so the settings were out of my control. But the sun was high, so the shutter speed was fast and the ISO was low. I love the mood, the action, and the colors. I feel I successfully captured the joy of children in summer. 

 

Travel:

Another phone shot! I could not have planned something like this. Just a beautiful moment I happened upon in the Muir Woods. The light filtering through the trees, the backlighting of that lone stump.

Street:

I loved this bright turquoise wall, and I only had to sit for a few minutes to catch someone walking by it. I shot at 1/400th of a second at f/8 and ISO 200.

 

Spooky:

This is one of my most successful shoots to date, and one that I actually planned out instead of winging. I dressed up my daughter in a vintage dress and applied some makeup to appear dead. I shot behind an old school and an abandoned church at sundown for the mood. The leading lines bring you to her and then off into the darkness. 1/60th, f/4, ISO 800.

 

Wedding:

This shot is one of my favorites, and it may only be because I know the people in it. I cut off feet, but I love the mixed eye contact, the anxious energy and mood. I was second shooter for a friend who lent me her Canon 5D Mark III and 24-70 f/2.8. It was shot at 1/1000th, f/2.8, and ISO 1250 which is insane. I could have certainly shot at a lower ISO and shutter speed.

 

Bird:

Another example of the right gear making the shot. I was shooting with the D500 and a 200-500 f/5.6. This was shot at 1/800th, f/5.6 and ISO 100.

 

Night:

My first attempt at night photography was my most successful. Shot with the Olympus at a 6 second exposure, f/5 and ISO 200.

 

So those are my favorite shots I took this year. I got to play with cameras I will never own and shoot with really talented photographers. I got to do some travelling and force my family into modeling. I got to practice making art in a way I haven’t in years. I am really enjoying this, and I hope you are having fun watching me try and fail and try and sometimes succeed. You can see all my past posts here.

What do you think I could use to work on this year? What would you like to see me try? What have you learned shooting this year?

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Live Show Recap: Best of 2015

Happy New Year! We’re back after a long holiday break, looking at your best photos of 2015.

New studio set up, new technical difficulties. Give us some time to get it all worked out. You can’t see me this show, I appear as a green screen for some reason.

Help us hit 500,000 subscribers on YouTube! Tell your friends.

Ok, let’s get into the photos. Here are our picks:

PhotoNews:

Your question and comments:

  • What were your favorite gifts this holiday season?
  • podcast is in the works
  • Chelsea is of indeterminate age

Portfolio review! Great work, Cameron. Get rid of some similar images, put up a store page.

Another portfolio review!

Chit-Chat! Some real gems this time. “I just put that in there because, I dunno, get some self awareness, man.”

Back to your pictures:

Speed round!

  • still water
  • another horse
  • duck
  • bird

Great work, all! Sorry we couldn’t get through all your photos, we got a ton.

Next Thursday we’ll be reviewing your candid photos. Thanks, see you next week!