Goodbye, Bowens | Company Is Officially Shuttering After 94 Years

Today we received an official confirmation after information had been circulating last week of lighting company Bowens’ untimely demise. After 94 years of business, Bowens is down for the count. Last year they were acquired by the investment firm AURELIUS, unfortunately for Bowens, as an add-on to a transaction that held higher value to the firm. Calumet, the other brand bundled in the acquisition, is intended to expand across Europe. Some curious claims have been made in an attempt to explain Bowens’ failure. AURELIUS told PDN, “…the far-reaching changes affecting its market, including new, considerably less expensive products by Chinese manufacturers, product innovations by competitors, and the changed buying behavior of professional photographers, who are now only willing to invest in new equipment if the investment guarantees additional income.” In Europe, Calumet will continue to provide service for discontinued Bowens products, and Calumet CEO Christof Bergmann has told PDN that they are working to ensure service globally, though details are not available on that yet. [REWIND:] DRAMATIC LIGHTING FOR PORTRAITS | CHRIS KNIGHT COMPARES LIGHT MODIFIERS From a consumer...

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Adobe Updates Lightroom to Increase Performance & Lots Of New Camera Support

While still under the 2015 moniker, Adobe has updated the desktop variant of Lightroom to include new lens and camera support and increasing performance. In version 2015.12 and 6.12 Adobe says the goal of this release is to provide additional camera raw support, lens profiles and address several bugs, including: A problem with missing iPhone video GPS data HSL Target Adjustment Tool erratic behavior Export from DNG to JPG for Flickr resulting in an error Moving files causing erratic deletion of said files. [Rewind: LIGHTROOM MOBILE GETS BIG UPDATE | ADJUSTMENT BRUSH, ANDROID INTERFACE, & DETAILS] Alongside the latest mobile offering, both updates include the same new camera and lens support updates, including the Canon EOS 6D Mark II, the Rebel SL2, Nikon D7500, and Leica TL2. Lens profiles now includes the Laowa 12mm f/2.8 Zero-D, Fuji conversion lenses, Tamron SP lenses for Sony A mount, as well as the 12-24mm f/4 G and 16-35mm f/2.8 GM. In addition to releasing Lightroom CC 2015.12/6.12, Adobe has released Adobe Camera Raw 9.12, skipping over 9.11 for respect of the tragic...

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This is everything you ever needed to know about Photoshop’s Liquify Tool

The Liquify Tool in Photoshop is one of its most controversial and misunderstood features. Many see it as a response when client asks “can you make me skinny?”, but it is so much more than that. While modifying the way people look is almost certainly its most common use, it also offers up some cool creative options. […] The post This is everything you ever needed to know about Photoshop’s Liquify Tool appeared first on DIY Photography.        Share...

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Headshot Photography Tips | How Focal Length Affects Headshots

Last week we discussed our favorite lenses for headshot photography, and the most important variable was not whether a lens was the most expensive version it could be, but rather its focal length. There is a sweet spot in focal lengths for studio portraiture, especially in headshot photography where the subject’s face is the most important part of the image. The reason our sweet spot lies where it does depends on which end of the spectrum we are discussing. When we go to wide, we introduce unflattering distortion to our subject’s face and when we go too long we get too far from our subject and lose the intimacy that can open our subjects up for authentic expression. Too Wide Of our favorite lenses, the least ideal is a 24-70mm. However, it’s a lens that many people who are established but are branching into headshot photography may already own. We would only recommend shooting headshots at the 70mm focal length of this lens, and even that is pushing it as far as distortion goes. If you were to shoot...

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10 Photography Bad Habits for You to Conquer

Let’s define what a bad habit is first; A habitual behavior considered to be detrimental to one’s wellbeing. However, this can be extended into learning a new skill set (like photography) where you may develop habits that can inhibit your learning progression, or even cause you physical injury. Magnolia bud, not 100% sharp as I hadn’t taken my tripod with me Before you can fix or adjust a bad habit, first you have to identify it. There is a good chance that a majority of photographers pick up or share the same habits, so maybe you can learn from my list. Possibly you are doing some of the same things. If you are lucky you aren’t doing all of them and this will help you avoid picking up any new photography bad habits. There is little as heartbreaking as downloading your photos from a shoot to find you did a really stupid thing like have your ISO really high, or the wrong white balance setting or some other silly thing. Take the time to develop good habits and break...

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How to Find Animals for Wildlife Photography Beginners

Wildlife photography may seem like an attractive field of photography to you, but one of the most daunting things for beginners is how to actually go about finding the animals in the first place. Thanks to mankind’s destructive nature we’re used to seeing fleeting glimpses of animals, often far away, prompting heated debates between groups as to what is that winged black speck in the distance. Two female red grouse amongst the heather on a British moorland. As a newcomer to wildlife photography, you may find yourself wondering how on Earth you are supposed to get even remotely close enough for a picture. Sure, you can maybe settle for an atmospheric habitat shot, with the subject small in the frame, but you’d be forgiven for wanting close-up portraits of animals too. So let’s look at some of the ways you can achieve those super detailed close-up shots, showing every part of fur or feather. 1. Wildlife Parks and Reserves One of the first pictures I ever took was in a wildlife reserve, and of this slightly soft Mandarin Duck....

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Did you know you can colour grade and edit videos in Adobe Lightroom?

Lightroom isn’t the first tool that usually springs to mind when it comes to creating videos. In fact, most people don’t know Lightroom even supports video files. I certainly didn’t, but then I’ve never tried it. As it turns out, though, it does. And you can grade, cut and edit your footage all within Lightroom itself. […] The post Did you know you can colour grade and edit videos in Adobe Lightroom? appeared first on DIY Photography.        Share...

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How to photograph a wedding – Tips for professional photographers or anyone thinking about trying this!

This blog is written for anyone who photographs weddings professionally or is thinking about doing so, but it is also beneficial for future newlyweds to truly understand the planning, thought processes, coordination, work, skill and endurance that we go through to get the images. I decided to write this blog post not to showcase the […] The post How to photograph a wedding – Tips for professional photographers or anyone thinking about trying this! appeared first on DIY Photography.        Share...

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Corrective Dodge & Burn For Adjustments For Portrait & Beauty Retouching

When we take beauty portraits, there is usually a gap between that initial raw image and the vision we hold in our mind’s eye. Once we get that image into our editing software, we subject that original picture to the proverbial death of a thousand cuts, or in our case, a thousand edits to produce something new and polished. Each adjustment isn’t major, rather, most are minor and seemingly insignificant on their own but together can result in a new image. Photographer Chris Knight shares some insights into some the techniques he uses for retouching portraits. And check out our interview with Chris and a tutorial piece he wrote for us here: Dramatic Portraits | My 5 Essential Tools to Create Drama in Your Portraits Chris Knight Rapid Interview | Dramatic Portraits & The Business Of Photography Goal: The addess tonal and texture inconsistencies in the skin of your subject. Step #1 – Create two Curve Adjustment Layers Copy Shortcut MAC – CMD + J PC – CTRL + J Name one “Darken” (Burn) and one “Lighten” (Dodge) Burn...

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5 Tips for Location Scouting Before a Photo Session

Maybe by a show of virtual hands, how many of us have ever been in a situation where we have gone to a location for a photoshoot only to find out that something unexpected like a marathon, construction or worse demolition, is going on that prevents you from using the space as you intended? And I am being very serious in the demolition example! One of my favorite local parks went through a complete revamp a couple of years ago and for months the only thing I could see was demolition equipment all around. The dirt paths that I loved so much had all gone and tar biking paths took their place! The dirt path with the cover of trees in the background was one of my favorite spots in this local park. The light would filter through the trees and the dirt path would act as a natural reflector and bounce golden light back to my subjects! – now this whole area is a parking lot that leads up to the trees! I am a natural light outdoor...

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PSA: Heightened Security At Airports Roll Out Today | What You Should Know

If you are planning on flying into the United States anytime soon a new set of regulations and the rolling out of new security measures begins today, and you should take note. There has been a lot of push-and-pull in regards to aviation security over the pat 6 months and much of it highly politicized. This ebb and flow, if you will, has been cause of stress for travelers worldwide and in no short part to the fact it’s always changing. There was the laptop ban imposed on certain Middle-Eastern and Muslim-majority countries and then recently that same was suggested for US-bound flights from Europe. May sighed in relief when the department of Homeland Security laid bare that it would not be extending the laptop ban to flights to the US originating in Europe but as of today there are other things to consider. Passengers on flights inbound from Canada, Mexico, and indeed anywhere else will be subject to more scrutiny and longer processing times, and numerous major airlines and international news outlets are currently informing the public to...

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Datacolor Spyder5Elite+ Upgrade Deal | Get A Spyder5Elite & Elite+ Software for $139

If you are not calibrating your monitor you’re robbing your work of its full potential, which is, of course, tantamount to your potential. It’s highly neglected and a bit annoying, but mission critical, and fortunately, Datacolor makes it easy to do. Datacolor, the makers of Spyder calibration tools is offering just about the best deal in monitor calibration tools we’ve seen. Essentially, you’re now able to get the best Spyder has to offer for $139 USD, as it were, as the offer is open both to those stateside and in Europe. For $139, Datacolor will send you a Spyder5Elite (normally $209), the Software upgrade for Spyder5Elite+, and 90 days of Adobe Creative Cloud Photography Plan. While the 90 days of CC Photography Plan is neither here nor there, the rest of it is. The way the Spyder5 system essentially works, if you get a piece of hardware which is about the same at all levels, and through software you access various levels of features. This is great because users of all levels can get precisely what they want and...

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These tips will make photographing animals easier and more efficient

While I love photos of animals, I believe that animal photography is one of the most difficult genres to master. You need a hell lot of patience and focus when working with them, even when they are trained and obedient. Jay P. Morgan has some awesome animal shots, and he shares some tips that will […] The post These tips will make photographing animals easier and more efficient appeared first on DIY Photography.        Share...

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7 Travel Photography Tips I’ve Learned from People in the Industry

Like any profession, over the years and countless hours of working and talking to people in the industry, you will pick up tips, advice and even things to avoid. This will ultimately help you improve and possibly make your photography business more profitable. Here are some of the main tips that I have picked up over the years from people in the travel photography industry. #1 – Blue Sells If you were to line up a whole load of travel magazines next to each other, you will notice that the vast majority of their front covers have something in common, the color blue. Whether it is the sky or water, magazine covers tend to feature photos of gorgeous sunny days rather than moody, dark and atmospheric conditions. I had always noticed that my “gorgeous sunny weather” shots outsold the photos with other types of conditions. But it wasn’t until the editor of a travel magazine told me the reason that I understood why. They found that historically, issues with beautiful sunny shots on the front cover sold much better...

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Make your own DIY Camera Case Dividers for less than $15

I’m as interested in an ‘easy life’ as much as the next person, so if somebody else has already done the hard work of making a product for me, and I can purchase it for a reasonable price, I’m all over it. After all why make life hard for yourself if you don’t have too. […] The post Make your own DIY Camera Case Dividers for less than $15 appeared first on DIY Photography.        Share...

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How to make cheap 2-point lighting setup without lighting gear

If you prefer working with natural light, with clever positioning of the subject and some DIY magic you get two light sources from a single window. Guys from The Film Look demonstrate how to make the 2-light setup on a budget and without any lighting gear, using only the light you get from a window. […] The post How to make cheap 2-point lighting setup without lighting gear appeared first on DIY Photography.        Share...

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Learn how to replace sky in Photoshop CC in just 2 minutes

If you take photos of a wonderful landscape and you’re not pleased with the sky – well, you can cheat a little and replace it in Photoshop. Peter McKinnon shows you how to do it, and he makes it look easy in a simple 2-minute tutorial. With this technique, you won’t only be able to […] The post Learn how to replace sky in Photoshop CC in just 2 minutes appeared first on DIY Photography.        Share...

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Lightroom Mobile Gets Big Update | Adjustment Brush, Android Interface, & Details

Lightroom Mobile got a new and eagerly anticipated update today that brings in a few key features to help round out the feature-set: Adjustment Brush Details Tab New iPad Interface Android Revamp Over the past year we’ve seen LR Mobile evolve from some useless primordial being into a fully capable mobile photography utility that is easily integrated into a desktop Lightroom user’s workflow. Lightroom Mobile now supports raw editing from a spread of cameras; can capture raw images right from the app; do local adjustments, and sync all your edits with your desktop via cable or cloud. In essence, LR mobile was 70% as powerful as the desktop, and with the new features it’s made another significant leap to that line. [REWIND: Your iPhone & iPad Can Shoot Raw As Of Today, With Lightroom Mobile] Adjustment Brush The local adjustments were a nice additive to LR Mobile but without the brush it felt stunted, so this is a welcomed addition to the mobile feature set. The implementation is actually quite good, if a little clumsy before you get it...

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Concert Photography 101: Cameras and Lenses for Beginners

If you’ve ever wondered how to become a concert photographer, one of the very first steps is to acquire the right gear. You’ve probably been to a concert or festival and seen music photographers hauling tons of equipment such as two camera bodies and enormous lenses. While it’s certainly ideal for a professional to have this much stuff (and then some), most beginners or amateurs absolutely don’t need this much gear to get started. Read on for some of my suggestions on how to gear up as a beginning doing concert photography. Concert photography rules Before we get into gear, let’s discuss your typical concert photography setting. Whether you’re shooting a big arena show or a small, casual performance in a bar, concert photography rules are more or less the same. You get to shoot for the first three songs only, and cannot use a flash or strobe of any sort. With these two rules in mind, this means that you need gear that allows you to adjust and shoot quickly and pull off shots in a low lighting...

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Does Canon’s 85mm Lineup Need An Update? | An 85mm F/1.4L With Stabilization May Arrive In August

There’s a lot of speculation (somewhat substantiated) that Canon is releasing a new 85mm, and a 1.4 at that. While we don’t generally deal in rumors here, this one deserves some thought, and the talk of an exciting new addition to Canon’s 85mm family said to be announced at the end of next month. CanonRumors has been reporting for some time that we will see an image stabilized 85mm f/1.4L lens in the very near future and have updated that statement with a solid timeframe – end of August 2017. Canon shooters have quite a few options ranging from basement-priced bargain third-party lenses to top-of-the-line options whose price tags dwarf even Canon’s own top-shelf 85mm f/1.2L II, so let’s consider where this fabled 85mm f/1.4L may fit in the lineup. Few 85mm lenses offer image stabilization, though as it edges into telephoto territory there’s no reason not to, so that would be a major differentiating factor here. Tamron makes an image stabilized 85mm f/1.8 that has been well received which sells for $749. The new 85mm f/1.4L would offer...

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Five Reasons to Get a PC Over The Macbook Pro, or Not

Looking back at some of the greatest rivalries – Ali vs. Frazier, Tesla vs. Edison, Jobs vs. Gates, and Iceman vs. Maverick; the legacy of two greats will continue long after their last showdown. For photographers, the never-ending debate of which platform (macOS vs. Windows) is superior floods the forums, chats, and blogs with diehard fans in both corners. There are some creatives, like myself, who reside in both camps enjoying the best (and worst), of what each system has to offer. Other creatives like, photographer Manny Ortiz, continue to voice their options on why to choose one system over another. In his video, Ortiz pits the latest 15” MacBook Pro vs. the Dell XPS 9560, and we’ve shared some of our thoughts on the matter below. Also, check out our list of Top Windows Alternatives to the MacBook Pro in the link below: Top Windows Alternatives To The New Macbook Pro [REWIND: LEICA TL2 REVIEW | LESS A RANDOM TOOL & MORE A PERSONAL STATEMENT] Cost Does Not Equal Value There are those who drink bottom shelf coffee...

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What Are The Best Cameras For Still Life Photography? Options For All Budgets

Still life photography is one of the most complex forms of photography. It can often require a huge amount of knowledge and skill, and, unfortunately, it can also require a lot of gear. Mercifully, while we may all want the latest, greatest, most expensive camera money can buy, it’s not necessary. [REWIND: LINKED SMART OBJECTS | THE ESSENTIAL BUT UNKNOWN PHOTOSHOP TECHNIQUE] When taking still life photos our cameras are generally placed on a tripod and don’t move for the duration of the shoot. In addition, our subjects are usually stationary, big surprise there. As such, rarely is it necessary for a still life camera to have all the bells and whistles which the latest models provide. We don’t need an advanced focusing system, the ability to shoot at high frame rates, excellent dynamic range, good high ISO noise capabilities. In fact, there are very few things a still life photographer needs from their camera. What Makes A Good Camera For Still Life? So what do you need? What actually makes a good camera for still life photography? Well,...

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Quick and Dirty Method of Using the Photoshop Spot Healing Brush Tool

Let’s say you use Lightroom and you’ve tried and tried to get rid of those distracting spots using Lightroom’s Spot Removal Tool but no matter how you set it – using Clone or Heal or changing the Opacity or increasing the Feather – you have a giant, obvious repair on your image. Not good! This is my final, processed image but I had to dive into Photoshop to get there. You’re a good photographer For kicks, let’s agree that in addition to knowing your way around Lightroom, you’re a skilled photographer. You also subscribe to Adobe CC, but honestly, you don’t use Photoshop much. Perhaps you’re even a little bit afraid of it. You loaded the software and update it whenever Adobe tells you to but other than the PS icon looking cool and professional in your dock, you don’t actually use it. You just don’t use Photoshop I mean, Layers, Masks, Blending? Ugh. I know. I do 90% of my work in Lightroom. No one has ever called me out on that so I keep on keepin’ on...

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Canon Opens It’s Most Sophisticated Walk-In Service & Support Center To-Date

Canon has recently opened it’s most sophisticated service and support center, in Burbank, California, and one Canon is dubbing it’s “most advanced cinema industry resource to date.” There will be walk-in hours Mon-Friday and there is slated to be a calendar full of educational offerings to accompany the service. If you were to speak to many truly entrenched working pros who don’t give a damn about brand loyalty but stick to one regardless of new tech, service is often a calling card of said brand. This shouldn’t be anything surprising as client/customer retention remains paramount so many fields, with Apple a shining example. This is, as it were, a reason why working pros depend on camera-brand professional services like NPS and CPS. This is an extension of Canon’s Professional Services and one Canon is clearly invested in and know for. Here’s a sample from the press release: Canon Burbank is poised to support Canon’s clients’ productivity through a dynamic mix of product evaluation and testing, product & workflow training, industry events and expedited repairs. Every aspect of the new...

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Balancing Fill Flash with Available Light | Getting The Lifestyle Look Magazines Love

At SLR Lounge, we’re advocates of a proper understanding of lighting, and creating images with a well-balanced blend available and added artificial lights is something we’ve touched on frequently as it has a broad appeal and usage for various genres of photography – weddings, lifestyle, family portraits, etc. It can produce that kind of ‘glossy’ magazine-type image that publications love. This balancing act is one that requires a meticulous and nuanced approach, and as such, can be tricky. However, once you have the mechanics and theory down the troubles generally fade away; it’s just getting those things squared away which can require testing. Fortunately, Clinton Lubbe of DPhog has created a lovely short video that addresses some of this, and if you pay attention you’ll garner a ton. DPhog is one of our favorite YouTube channels because there’s just no fuss, no nonsense, just hard hitting and revelatory information. Lubbe has a brilliant way of brining a viewer into the thought process of a shoot and this is no different. In this scenario, Lubbe shoots a lifestyle editorial indoors...

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