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Live Show Recap: Landscapes!

We’re back! This week we reviewed your landscapes, and as always, y’all showed up.

We have a Patreon now, so if you’d like to support us (please) you can do it at¬† We’ll come up with some higher donation tiers, but none of them will be talking to me on the phone.

Our GH5 review is coming up!

Let’s get right into your¬†pictures:

  • b&w?¬†Infrared?
  • “what are we gonna do? Have rules and loose guidelines?”
  • walkway
  • “I feel like this mountain has a cool name like Armadillerback”
  • here’s the link to that video about¬†ND filters
  • epic¬†battle
  • everyone watch Arrested Development, it’s perfect
  • here’s the video on eliminating¬†fringing
  • fog¬†plan
  • John¬†Mayfield!
  • “this is about Jesus”¬†“and a dog”
  • “if you ever go borg, would you put a histogram in your eyes?”
  • I think they forgot to give picks for a while

Over to me for your questions:

  • how to you make a landscape look original and not boring? Shoot during interesting whether, change your time of day, add an interesting element. Repetition.
  • how long have you been shooting? How long together? Have your styles changed? Yes, their style has changed together, they’ve been shooting together as long as they’ve known each other. Tony’s been shooting for about 20 years, Chelsea has been casually since high school.

Time for a¬†portfolio¬†full of dogs! *Justin does not kick dogs. Dogs are perfect and we don’t deserve them. Fred, your work is lovely, but bump up your exposure a bit. Maybe add a photo of yourself to your “about¬†me” page unless you are, in fact, a dog.

Another portfolio!¬†Tommi, that’s a great lizard. Your photos are great, maybe choose a different layout that doesn’t lose your photos. Tommi, your email address is crazy long.

More questions from me:

  • money comments!
  • we will not give away gear, maybe prints, not music, maybe drawings.
  • has Tony ever integrated a Raspberry Pi into photography? No. Chelsea has integrated real raspberry pie.

Back to pictures:

  • lonely¬†island
  • “my old Erlend is dead to me now”
  • dark¬†waterfall
  • “you did it Brian, everyone loves you now”
  • “sure, it’s off the chain”

Time for chit-chat! The part of the show where you say weird/mean/dumb things and we respond.

  • could you explain what are the things you mentioned? No?
  • do you two always have to skip my pictures? Yes, toadally.
  • was Chelsea screaming for blood during the¬†hockey fight? Probably.
  • Zach from Banana Republic sold Tony a shirt
  • we’re in a live show loop. Bananas. Join our¬†Patreon and vote for topics! “Kyle has like, the most beautiful banana. Please don’t quote me.”

Back to your photos:

More questions from youuuu:

  • Tony, FAA blah blah blah? He only thought about himself.
  • lenses for Sony apsc sensors? They need more native lenses. Metabones adapters help.

Back to photos:

Back to me for some last questions:

  • what do you think about borders on photos? It can work.
  • if you had $1000 to get into landscape gear, would you get a camera or a drone first? Camera. A drone can be limiting.
  • how long did it take to get the¬†peanut butter and jelly¬†out from under your nails? 2 days.
  • what do we like on pizza? Depends on where you go! Tony likes a buffalo chicken.¬†I like white pizzas, particularly a barbecue chicken, bacon. Pepe’s pizza in New Haven is the best. Chelsea likes some weird one with pistachio on it.¬†

Tony and Chelsea had to go to kickball. Amir get’s a shout out for this lovely¬†shot. “That looks like a unicorn frappucino up in there.”

Join us next week for your creative self-portraits! We want to see yer faces.


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Beginner Photography: Landscapes

I HATE SHOOTING LANDSCAPES. There, I said it. It’s probably only because I’m bad at it, but I cannot for the life of me capture a compelling landscape. I feel like I did better with cityscapes, but even then I have a really hard time finding a focal point.

This week I went out shooting at a park I’d never been to, and I felt pretty good about it while I was shooting (which is rare) and then when I got them onto my computer I was so disappointed. Just so much green, and not much interest. I even got a shot of an urban cowboy and couldn’t make it compelling!¬†

I tried to capture some moving water in a stream, but every shot wound up wildly overexposed. I guess I need a neutral density filter :-/

As always, I was using my borrowed Olympus E-M10 with a Lumix 14-42 f/3.5-5.6. I shoot mostly aperture priority and often shot with the highest f/stop to get the whole scene in focus. Unfortunately that meant that I didn’t nail focus when I came across a man riding a horse. They were moving a bit too fast for me to capture, but I recovered it as well as I could in post.

I do all of my editing in Lightroom, mostly adjusting the crop, white and black points, and some luminance.

f/7.1, 1/400th, ISO 200


f/3.5, 1/1250th, ISO 200


f/22, 1/20th, ISO 100


f/20, 1/60th, ISO 250


I’m really kicking myself for not adjusting my aperture when that cowboy showed up. It could have been such an incredible capture but I really missed the mark. I’ll have to go back there and hope to see them again, there were quite a few people out riding. I’d also like to go back during the golden hour which would help with the lack of color variation in all the shots.


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Live Show Recap: Landscapes

I think I can say that we’re on a roll lately. It might be the whisky. We looked at your landscape photos this week, and you all really showed up. There were some great shots!

Also this episode, Chelsea reveals that she is a part-time ghost. We won’t be on next week as Tony and Chelsea are traveling, but the week after that (March 16th) we’ll be looking at photos on the theme of “lines.” So lines need to be the main compositional element of your shot, not just incidental.

We start the show off with chit-chat, to get Chelsea’s spirits up. It seems to work:

  • T&C should make a baby because they have too much time on their hands? Seems like a reasonable solution.
  • Balki Bartokamous. Cousin Larrying is a real term, we swear.
  • angry Pentax users. I’m sure that person is really a lovely woman.
  • boring focus breathing comment
  • Tony’s dad is a bobblehead
  • very mixed reviews of Tony and Chelsea’s voice
  • Pauline is hella positive

Okay, let’s get into your photos. For some reason they keep putting them in alphabetical order, sorry guys!

  • gorgeous fog over the water
  • “Rock Ness Monster”
  • I think they forgot that picks were a thing for a while here
  • silhouette
  • rolling hills
  • Justin does a great Windows 98 impression
  • Fyn sent us a calendar! It’s gorgeous.
  • Table Mountain
  • “set up a tent, live your life there”
  • “HDR is like plastic surgery, you only notice the bad stuff”
  • don’t Bart Simpson us
  • a gorgeous sunrise
  • “that gets a picture from me”
  • this just in: Nikon Snapbridge still sucks
  • windmill

Over to me for a question:

  • Nikon wants to focus on higher end cameras, what does that mean for consumer cameras? We need better bridge cameras with smooth touch screens and intuitive controls.¬†

Now for a portfolio. Janis Farhat, we are so so sorry about Chelsea’s pronunciation of your name. It all goes downhill from here. Lovely portfolio though! Turn off auto-scroll, choose a different first shot. Tony’s hair is like a fluffy cloud. “Very slimming to cut your body in half with the sun!” Great work, get rid of your drop menus and have them each be one page.

Hahaha Chelsea is losing it over “Janus” being a name. We all have dumb names.


Back to photos:

  • infrared
  • how can we tell what spectrum of colors animals see? Science!
  • “I only see light that bounces off of predators, should I go to a doctor?”
  • “she’s my little goose poop”
  • Taranaki
  • C is not in the middle of the alphabet
  • “I saw that movie, that’s where the demons come from”
  • dad heaven
  • “backbutt”
  • this would be so good without that fake moon
  • dramatic sky¬†“that’s what my soul feels like when I’m going through a spiritual conflict”
  • sun and church
  • foggy road

Now some questions from me:

  • expose for the sky or the foreground?¬†Expose for the brightest part and raise shadows in post.
  • why don’t you use super expensive cameras like the Phase 1? Because they’re intimidating and expensive. We’d love to try one though!
  • a version of this show where T&C are Chef Ramsay brutal
  • if you had to choose, do you sacrifice composition or light for a landscape? Composition.
  • what motivates you as a photographer? The feeling when you get the shot you’re going for. Competition with yourself.

Back to your photos:

Back to me for some reason?

  • relevant to Janus
  • a confusing drone question for Justin
  • which of the new Sigma lenses are you looking forward to? The 24-70 f/2.8
  • Chris Reddy, will you make us pancakes?
  • infomercials for the books?¬†

And back to photos:

And your last questions:

  • can you bracket with a moving subject? No! But you can shoot raw, make virtual copies in LR and then adjust the exposure and blend them together.
  • how do you make money from landscape photography? Stock photos, open a gallery in a tourist town, get a job at a national park? Education, workshops. Add a model and sell them as ads.

That’s our show! Join us in two weeks¬†for lines.


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Beginner Photography: Landscape

I realized that I started my past three blogs with “hey guys!” so I really need to switch up my intros.

This week’s topic is landscapes, which I took some liberties with. Landscapes in February in the Eastern US are not particularly nice, so I decided to shoot a cityscape. I honestly have no idea how to shoot a compelling cityscape. I think¬†a night shot would have worked better, so I could have eliminated some of the distracting foreground.¬†

To set up these shots, I first researched “best views of the Philadelphia skyline” and chose my spot. I waited until the golden hour, then went there with my camera and tripod. I set my camera to aperture priority at a medium aperture and then set my camera to bracket my shots with the plan of combining them in post. Here’s a great video about image averaging and panoramas:

Once I brought my images into Lightroom I used the Photo Merge tool to combine them into HDR images. A few of them I combined into panoramas using the same tool. I then went in and adjusted the exposure and contrast, as HDR can flatten images. Here’s what I came up with!

HDR panorama f/5.6, 1/1000, ISO 200


HDR f/5.6, 1/320th, ISO 200


HDR f/5.6, 1/320th, ISO 200


I honestly don’t know how I feel about these shots. They are so busy! That bridge weight sign shows up in almost every shot, so in the last one I decided to just let it be a prominent focal point. They are truly the city as I see it,¬†busy and dirty and complex and beautiful, but I’m not sure how they come across to you all.

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Beginner Photography: Travel

Hey friends! This weekend I got to do a whirlwind weekend in San Francisco for my friends wedding. This will essentially be a two-part post, since next week’s topic is street photography and I did quite a bit of that while I was there (get ready to see some surfers)!

This was my first time on the west coast, so there was a lot to capture. We stayed by the beach in a great, diverse little neighborhood. I also got to go out to the Muir Woods and hike among the redwoods. I hope I can do them some justice! I pulled a total rookie move and forgot to bring my Olympus battery charger. My camera made it through to the last day, halfway through my hike. Luckily I had my phone with me still, and wound up getting some of my better pictures with that.

I wish I’d taken some more time to just go out and shoot, but it was an action-packed weekend and I wasn’t about to take time away from friends and events to take pictures. I hope I can go back and spend some more time in the future, there’s a lot more I wanted to capture.

There was a lot of great street art and signage in the neighborhood


There’s that distant SF fog


This needs some editing,¬†the exposure on her doesn’t seem right

The water was so cold, these men are insane


I got this shot with my phone after my camera died

So those are some of my faves! I did minimal editing to them all to adjust exposure and make sure I had black and white points in each photo, as well as some cropping and straightening. I hope I captured the feel of the area (let me know, Kyle Wolfe)!

Help me out here, how’d I do? What would you change/add/leave out from these shots?


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Live Show Recap: Landscape

Holy hell you guys, this episode was bonkers. Jet-lagged Chelsea and weirdly tan Tony are on point. We had a record number of live viewers which led to a horrific live chat and so many photo submissions we crashed the site. All in all it was a blast.

Chelsea knows world politics, and the president of Kazakhstan is Subaru.

We start the show off with Chit-Chat, our favorite segment where we highlight the best and worst comments we get on our YouTube channel throughout the week.

  • Tony is chill af
  • Chelsea has nice front hair
  • no news here. Oh, except the 5D Mark IV, the worst kept secret in photography.

T&C talk about the 5D Mark IV and what cameras they brought to Ireland. “I really hope I don’t have a calendar when I’m dead.”

Ok, we get into your pictures here:

  • “what is that? Is that the little animal from the original Battlestar Galactica?” “Is that a baby holding a monkey?”
  • “uh oh, do you see why there’s only one set of tracks? It’s cause Jesus carried him.”
  • lovely reflection
  • rowers¬†“they’re actually trying to row away from each other. But they’re not bright!”
  • duuuucks on the water. Fire in the sky.
  • edge¬†of the earth
  • crepuscular rays
  • “let’s go on, this is crap
  • barbed¬†wire
  • purples
  • “simple, nice, makes me want to go golfing
  • explain these horse heads to me

Over to me for your questions!

  • where in Ireland were you? Dead guy in a gutter with a Guinness can in his hand. “Welcome to Ireland!””Home of the dead guy.”
  • ¬†tips or tricks to make a good image with bad light? Focus on composition, processing, HDR.
  • how often do you visit a location before you get your shot? Depends!

Ok, let’s look at a portfolio. Fix your layout! Pare down some images.

Now another¬†one! More tiny dog, less everything else. Less sub-menus, pare it down to professional menus. “Get rid of that guest book because it’s not 1998 anymore.”

Back over to me because Chelsea loves to hear my voice. Oh, and your questions.

  • how do you wind down? Cry, eat too much. Make a list to make things more manageable, make a schedule or routine. Take a bike ride, play video games, gym, sports.
  • how to fix a dark sky when you have a complicated horizon? Graduated filter! But if not that, what? Nope, just that. The more natural the better.
  • how to shoot in a dark space indoors? Use a fast prime lens and a camera that does well with high ISO. Flash could be horrible in a dark space like that.

Back to photos:

Over to me for some more questions:

  • call me the troll killer. “Don’t give the trolls movie recommendations!”
  • best for depth of field? Small aperture or hyperfocal?¬†for more info.
  • 12 v 14 bit raw files? No one cares.
  • what do you listen to when you edit? Chelsea: Podcasts, Kendrick Lamar, classical. Tony: Marina and the Diamonds, Tov Lo. Judge John Hodgman for both.
  • words for bangs? So many penis words.

A few more photos before we head out (sorry for the keyboard banging, I forgot to mute myself):

Aaaand here¬†is where the show falls apart in the best way. “How do you stay married to me, I look ridiculous.” “I love you so much, you’re so brown.”

“I can’t stop laughing. You look like a sausage.”

And there we have it, folks. Next week we’ll be reviewing your “Adventure” photos! So go out and shoot something fun. If you didn’t know, I’ve been blogging¬†each week as I learn photography, and trying to shoot for each live show subject. So learn along with me!

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Beginner Photography: Landscapes

Phew. Guys, landscapes. I can tell you right now that this is not my bag, for a number of reasons. 1) I live in Philadelphia. There are very few landscapes that won’t include people, cars, or trash. 2) I find landscapes boring (not yours! Yours are great) and 3) my camera phone is not made for them. All that to say, this week feels like an epic failure.

To make compelling landscapes you should have¬†most¬†of these things: large depth of field, interesting foreground or background, a focal point, interesting light, and leading lines. Since I have no control of my camera settings with my phone, I couldn’t control my depth of field or shutter speed, so all I could¬†really do was with my composition.


I walked my dog, Hungry, earlier in the week and got a decent shot of my favorite block in the city.


Nice light and colors during sunset, leading lines.

A few days later I got my family to come out with me to Belmont Plateau, where you can see the city skyline. Turns out my camera phone doesn’t do too well with distance. Or detail.¬†


This is indeed a cityscape, but man is it boring.


I tried to add a bit more interest by capturing my running daughter in the foreground.

I would have been better off waiting for sunset so I could have gotten some better light and more interesting color to the photos. As they are they seem very flat and boring. Next time I think I’ll go shoot some abandoned¬†buildings. This city has a lot of character which just isn’t captured from a distance.

I attempted to stack a bunch of the images using Tony’s method in this video, but even that¬†couldn’t seem to pull enough data from my wimpy camera phone to make any difference.

Do yourselves a favor and learn from Tony and Chelsea here. 

And please, PLEASE tell me what I could have done to make these images interesting!

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Irix 15mm f2.4 Ultra-wide Rectilinear Lens Announced

Swiss newcomers Irix look to leave a wide wake with their first entry into the 3rd party manual lens market.

The Photography Show 2016 in Birmingham,

Swiss lensmaker Irix have just announced their 15mm f2.4 ultra-wide manual focus rectilinear lens. Produced for Canon EF, Nikon F, and Pentak K Full-Frame mounts (look at you Pentax!) the new Irix 15mm f2.4 aims to capitalize on photographers desires for a high-resolution capable ultra-wide premium lens offering.

Photo courtesy of
Irix Blackstone / Photo courtesy of

The new 15mm looks to set itself apart by packing in a list of dream features for fans of landscape, architecture and astrophotography. Most notably a good deal of attention was paid to precision manual focusing. The Irix 15mm f2.4 features a focus lock that can be selected at all focusing distances as well as a click-lock at infinity; the distance the lens will often live¬†at. That’s right astrophotographers, no more pre-focusing in the daylight then taping down your focus ring and hoping for the best. Speaking of shooting at night, the hyper-focal scale and other lens markings are said to glow in low light.

Photo courtesy of
Photo courtesy of

Minimum focusing distance is a very short .25 meters or .82 feet. Along with it’s f2.4 aperture this combo could make for some interesting out of focus effects as long as you’re willing and able to get very close to your subject. Should you need to stop the lens down it’s aperture design features 9 blades and a minimum f-stop of f22.¬†Irix_9_rounded_aperture_blades

Another nice touch not seen in other 3rd party options is that front filters are able to be screwed onto the massive 95mm filter thread¬†while maintaining the use of the lens hood. As if that weren’t enough there is also a slot for gel filters to be slid into place behind the rear element.

Photo courtesy of
Front 95mm filter mount / Photo courtesy of
Photo courtesy of
Rear filter mount / Photo courtesy of

The 15mm f2.4’s¬†optical design utilizes¬†15 elements in 11 groups. With all of the modern corrective optics present Irix claims their lens will be capable of resolving the best of what modern 50+ megapixel sensors can capture. Elements feature a neutrino coating to help produce¬†an image free of outside coloration and maximize image contrast.

Photo courtesy of
Photo courtesy of

Because jumping into the market with a feature rich ultra-wide manual lens wasn’t challenging enough, Irix has decided to do so with two variations of the lens each aimed at shooters with different needs. First up is the Blackstone which lives in an¬†aluminium and magnesium body engineered to handle the environment with weather-sealing and splash resistance. Next is the Firefly designed for the more mobile photographer. It’s body is lighter and it’s focusing ring has a more knurled texture.

Photo courtesy of
Irix Firefly / Photo courtesy of

Irix says that it’s ultra-wide 15mm f2.4 will be available in the spring 2016 so we won’t have to wait long to see if the optics can match the body’s ambitious design. Pricing has¬†yet to be announced for this Korean assembled lens but expect it to fall between the Full-Frame offerings from Samyang/Rokinon/Bower and 1st party auto-focusing lenses.

Stay up-to-date and check out additional images and specifications at


Check out Tony’s review of¬†the a6300 here. And you can see Andy’s past posts here.