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12.23.2014

How to Recognize Good Posing

Posing is hard. It’s even harder to pose a boudoir client since she is usually not wearing much. No clothes, no where to hide!  So how do you know a good pose when you see it? Let me show you some examples.

Posing: Arms

© 2014 Jen Rozenbaum | Lens: 50mm F1.4 DG HSM | Art | Shutter speed: 1/400 sec | Aperture: F2.8 | ISO: 200

© 2014 Jen Rozenbaum | Lens: 50mm F1.4 DG HSM | Art | Shutter speed: 1/400 sec | Aperture: F2.8 | ISO: 200

In this first shot, my client looks larger than she looks in real life. The goal of a good pose is to make a client look as good as she looks in real life, if  not better. Making her look larger than real life is a huge fail.

So how do we make her look more like she looks in person (if not better)? In this case, the first point I notice is that her arms are adding bulk to her body. Arms are a tricky part of the body to pose because of this. They can easily make a woman look large.

Since her arms are up we can also see a lot of her back. Again, it’s making her look larger than she really is so we need to rearrange the pose slightly to flatter her more.

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12.23.2014

Congratulations to our winners, Ced Garret, Alycia Chroszucha, Darren White, and Jonathan Woodson!

Winners

 

Do you have a favorite Sigma lens in your kit?

Share a selfie gear shot of you and your Sigma lenses and cameras using either the #MySigmaLens or #MySigmaCamera hashtag on Twitter, Instagram, or Google Plus and it can be featured right here in this blog feed. Get silly, or get seriously creative, but be sure to share a photo with those hashtags by January 31st, 2015!

At the end of January, we’ll pick four of the photos, and hook up the photographer with a brand new Sigma weather-resistant polarizer filter that matches the lens pictured!

 

 

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Click the jump below for full rules and eligibility.

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12.18.2014

Having been an ice hockey goalie for the last 30 years, my passion for hockey photography runs deeper than any other sport. The speed of the action along with the close quarters of the action relative to the camera create a challenging environment to shoot in. Throw in frozen fingers, pucks whizzing by your face and the occasional stick in your ear and the task becomes downright treacherous. Here are some tips to not only get better hockey images, but to also keep your equipment safe and yourself out of the emergency room.

First, let’s assume your warm and comfortable and not in fear for your life so we can focus on the photography end of things. Shooting with a fast lens such as Sigma’s 120-300 f2.8 Sport lens or the 70-200 f2.8 HSM is a necessity. Unlike many of the field sports, shooting with a wide angle with hockey can also yield some great results when the action is within inches of you if you’re against the glass.

The first thing to look at before you shoot is the lighting system at the rink. Some rinks have LED lights shining down on the ice which is the ideal situation since they light the ice surface evenly with a consistent color temperature. Some rinks have lights that shine up toward the ceiling resulting a softer reflective light that isn’t as bright. Unfortunately, most rinks have mercury vapor lights that create hot spots on the ice surface and inconsistent color temperatures. The lights pulse in intensity that isn’t visible to the naked eye but show up in every image which can cause you to pull your hair out chasing white balance.

© 2014 Steve Chesler | Inconsistent color temperatures can be a problem when shooting under mercury vapor lighting. This image shows how the subject is well lit the moment this was shot and the lights further back where at a different color temperature in their light cycle.

© 2014 Steve Chesler | Inconsistent color temperatures can be a problem when shooting under mercury vapor lighting. This image shows how the subject is well lit the moment this was shot and the lights further back where at a different color temperature in their light cycle.

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12.17.2014

Almost all dogs sport a collar of one sort or another. If you plan on taking a lot of photos of your dog, then it’s probably worthwhile pondering what collar will look best on your furry friend.

Below are images depicting Rowan, our four-month old ‘fox red’ Labrador retriever, wearing collars of different colors. For years we have been using nylon collars from Lupine Pet, the gold standard for style, durability, and customer support. (Once, one of our pups chewed a hole in the collar of another one of our dogs. Lupine replaced the collar no questions asked!)

In anticipation of this blog, I contacted Lupine and asked if they would send some samples for Rowan to model. She had fun getting fashionable with five different looks.

Rowan shows off her  “Sunny Days” collar, thanks to Lupine Pet. Purple, one of the triadic colors based on her orangish fur, looks fun and vibrant. Nikon D800E. Sigma 70-200mm f/2.8 lens at 200mm with OS on. 1/250 sec., f/5.6, ISO 100. One Dynalite strobe fired with a PocketWizard Plus III. Processed in Adobe Photoshop CS5. Photo © 2014 David FitzSimmons. All rights reserved.

Rowan shows off her “Sunny Days” collar, thanks to Lupine Pet. Purple, one of the triadic colors based on her orangish fur, looks fun and vibrant. Nikon D800E. Sigma 70-200mm f/2.8 lens at 200mm with OS on. 1/250 sec., f/5.6, ISO 100. One Dynalite strobe fired with a PocketWizard Plus III. Processed in Adobe Photoshop CS5. Photo © 2014 David FitzSimmons. All rights reserved.

In choosing a collar for your dog, it pays to consider color theory. Here are several color schemes.

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12.10.2014

When I shoot fashion editorials for magazines, I am shooting a series of images to tell a story. In 6-10 images I must engage the viewer and pull their eye through the story. I can use lighting, posing, styling to help unite each image into a single series. If the images are too different than they do not hold together as on unified story. On the other hand, if all the images are the same focal length and scene, they can also become stagnant and leave your story falling flat. 

For this reason I enjoy varying my focal lengths to provide visual variety. For each look I tend to get a full length shot or shot that incorporates the environment. Then I move in for a tight shot where the viewer can better study the subject’s face, clothing or detail in the scene. When in a striking location I treat the scene much like story-telling in the movies. I begin with wide angle to introduce the environment. Move in to a mid-length focal length to introduce my subject, and then grab a telephone to capture a detail. This process of slowly introducing more detail and information is very common in cinematography.

Over the past 8 months I’ve really embraced two lenses over and over again to help me achieve my fashion editorial goals, whether in the studio or on location. My one-two punch is the Sigma 24-105mm f4.0 and the Sigma 70-200mm f2.8. Between these two lenses I find that I am able to have the versatility and quality needed for these series of images that appear in fashion magazines around the world. Let’s take a look at why this has become such a powerful combination for me and then review this pairing in action.

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