I arrived in Moab, Utah two days ago to attend and teach during the 1st annual Nightscaper conference where some of the greatest night photographers have gathered to share our common passion under the dark, starry skies of Moab.
Over the last 6 years of teaching in Moab, I have noticed a lot of big changes happening. Many more lodging facilities have been built and with this comes increased tourism and activity in the area. Why wouldn’t anyone want to come to Moab? After all it’s home to both Canyonlands and Arches National Park as well as many other areas that are ideal for outdoor recreation. The weather is good and on a moonless night the skies are super dark in Arches and even darker over in Canyonlands.
For this photo, I placed the lens next to one of the flowers and focused on the ground. Then I set the lens to manual focus so focus would be locked on that distance. The ISO was 800- selected this high because it was windy and the flowers were moving, so I wanted not only a lot of depth of field, but also a faster shutter speed. F stop was maxed out at f16. That resulted in a shutter shutter speed of 1/1600 second. Rather than using a remote shutter, I set the camera to fire using the built-in intervalometer. I tripped the shutter to start the intervalometer and then set the camera in the dirt facing up to capture the blooms in the sun, which was peeking out from the clouds. I tried several different flower groupings to find the best composition. Shadows were opened up in Adobe Camera Raw.
As a mother of four young children and a full-time photographer, I am my family’s storyteller. I have one of the most important “jobs” in the whole world: I’m capturing the special milestones we know are so fleeting, the mundane moments that make up our every day, and everything in between. It’s important for me to have faithful camera gear that I can rely on to capture our family’s memories.
As a travel and lifestyle photographer, I love being able to visit far flung destinations around the world and experience foreign cultures. Through it all, I try to create inspirational images that celebrate the local art and flavor. My main tools for all this is my trusty camera gear, a willingness to explore and create, lots of coffee for those early morning photo sessions, and my travel partner in crime Zory.
The key is… (are you ready for it?)… patience. Yep, that’s it. Simple, but not easy.
Once you understand that this may take a while you will not feel the need to rush them or yourself, which will inevitably make this portrait session implode. This applies to photographing children by themselves, with siblings/friends, and in family portraits. In fact, sometimes photographing families with children is even more difficult because the parents get frustrated trying to make their kids behave that it can have the opposite effect. Hopefully your patience will rub off on them.
Photographer, and Sigma Technical Representative Mike Hill, has mastered the art of visual storytelling. He uses his camera to take the viewer into a different world through his strong series of photographs. He says you should “build interest about your story with strong opening images that evoke curiosity.” In this series, he shoots everything with Sigma glass, and the beautiful pictures speak for themselves.
We sent Sigma Ambassador Jack Fusco one of the first samples of the 40mm F1.4 DG HSM | Art lens that arrived here in the US, and he quickly put it to great use, capturing this incredible shot of Comet 46P / Wirtanen, along with his girlfriend, Rachel, and their dog, Kona, in the Anse Borrego Desert State Park in Southern California.
Our friend Dion Scoppettuolo recently returned from an epic Safari and adventure in Etosha National Park in Namibia, Okonjima Game Reserve in Namibia and the Namibian Desert. The Sigma 18-300mm F3.5-6.3 DC MACRO OS HSM and 150-600mm F5-6.3 DG OS HSM Contemporary lenses were along to document his travels. Were these lenses up to the challenges of capturing the magnificence of these remote locations? The photos speak for themselves! Be inspired by this great gallery of images!
For the last nine years, I have spent much of my time poking around the darkened nooks and crannies of abandoned buildings. Not because I like the smell of mold and mildew or enjoy using my face as a spider web clearing tool, but because I LOVE searching for beauty in unexpected places. Since 2009 I have been creating a fine art photographic series called The Art of Abandonment. My travels take me all over, searching out historic and endangered locations, and creating scenes that tell a story.
Since day one, Sigma lenses have always been in my bag alongside a few pro-level Nikon lenses as well. In fact, my first ultrawide lens was the Sigma 10-20mm which I used for years on a Nikon D300. When I upgraded to the full-frame Nikon D800 however, I went with a different ultrawide bread and butter lens for the last five years with the same focal range and aperture. So, when Sigma contacted me and told me they had a 14-24mm F2.8 ART lens that was potentially “breadier and butterier” than the killer one in my bag, I HAD to try it out on one of my abandonment shoots.
When the lens came in the mail, I opened it like a long-awaited Christmas present. Pulling it out of the padded case, I could tell that the lens had a solid build. The focus and zoom rings are smooth with the right amount of resistance. Bear in mind the zoom ring is reversed from the house brand, so it took a little brain training for me to remember that zooming out is now a RIGHT turn instead of left! The lens cap has a padded ring which is very nice for sliding over the lens petals without scuffing or scratching them. All this is to say, I liked the lens even before I put it on my camera.
Photographing the aurora can be one of the most exciting opportunities a landscape photographer can come across. People most commonly travel to Northern locations from all over for a chance to see them in what can often be a once in a life time experience. Even if you’ve traveled to the far North, it’s never a guarantee you’ll see them. That just makes it all the more important that you’re ready to shoot them when you do. It’s worth noting that if you’re planning a trip in the Southern Hemisphere, all of these tips below will also be applicable if you’re fortunate enough to see the Southern Lights, the “Aurora Australis.”
I’ve been fortunate enough to photograph the Northern lights a good number of times and recently contributed an entire section of a book focused on shooting them. I wanted to share some of my favorite tips here today.