On The Edge

On The Edge

Sometimes you should ignore the bride and groom.

I don’t mean ignore them completely, but remember to turn your camera’s gaze toward others attending the wedding. Many of my favorite photographs from weddings are of guests! My first commitment is to my client, but their loved ones are equally important parts of their wedding celebration.

One of my journalism mentors used to say, “always look around the edges of your frame.” What he meant was, keep your viewfinder poised to capture images on the periphery. Often these are quiet moments between ‘The Moments.’ They’re not the iconic first dance, or the obligatory cake cutting. They are poetic, unexpected, or funny glimpses into the personalities of your clients’ family and friends.

This photograph was actually made during the father-daughter dance at a recent wedding. While I was focused on the bride and her father waltzing sweetly, something on the edge of my frame caught …

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How Can Light Create Mood?

Photography Lighting

As a photographer, lighting is everything to me. Light describes how I feel about an image and expresses to the world how I feel as a photographer. Light is to my photography as the air is to my lungs. My images can’t live without it.

Watching the way a shadow wraps around a woman’s body to accentuate her curves, or the way the catch lights are caught in her eyes is part of what I love about creating images. The use of light is more of my paintbrush than my camera at times, whether I want sun flare while outside or a hair light while in studio, it is the light that I am always looking for.

I was told a long time ago, in my first photo class, that a great image has mystery, ambiguity and contradiction. All three can be created with light. Shadows create ambiguity and have mystery if …

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Lady Gaga, iHeartRadio and 9 Tips for Event Photography

iHeartRadio - Tips for Pro Photographers

This past September I had the privilege of photographing the iHeartRadio Music Festival at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas.  Having shot music events of various sizes over the past few years, I quickly recognized that this wasn’t going to be a typical “concert” by any means. It was a 2-day event, packed with 10 “A list” artists each night, performing anywhere from 10 to 40 minutes each. Fast paced and on a large scale, I knew from the outset that in order to “capture” the event in a cohesive and artful way I’d have to draw from all facets of my shooting experience and documentary style. Given that I had virtually unrestricted access to run around the arena and get the shots I wanted, the challenge was on me to document and present the concert in a unique way and to deliver something different than the typical concert coverage. (Often you …

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Let There Be Light: Part 1

Photographer Jared Platt

Join Jared Platt’s next free Lightroom Webinar from The Photo Life: Check the calendar and RSVP!

At PartnerCon in San Diego, California, I gave a lecture called “Let There Be Light.” This lecture was an academic, aesthetic and philosophical discussion on light, what it means and how we use it to communicate. This was my opening slideshow. Stay tuned for more installments from the lecture in the weeks to come.

A Quick Challenge

By the way, I chose the song on this slideshow with care. Pay close attention to the resolution at the end, there is a hidden treasure in this song that is not only interesting trivia, but is sheer brilliance on the part of the musician, Kevin Burdick. “In Too Deep” is a song about the hope of redemption from darkness, so if you have heard my lecture, you will understand why I chose it. But in the …

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Creating EMOTION in your Boudoir Photography!

Christa Meola Boudoir Photography

Written by Christa Meola, NYC Photographer

Capturing emotion in my photographs has become my trademark, and I love sharing simple tips on how you can do this too! Creating emotion in your photographs is all about capturing authenticity, movement, sensuality and mood, not a pose that’s static where the subject is disconnected from the moment. Here are a few techniques to get you started…

COACH ACTIONS For real women who have never professionally modeled before, it’s easier for her to be real and look natural when you offer her an action to perform instead of asking for a “pose.” An action such as “toss your hair, shake your booty, kick up your leg,” etc. looks more emotive then when someone’s just standing there wondering what to do. Make sure to coach her to push the action to the extreme. Coach her to “Kick that leg higher! and shake that booty faster!!”

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Lightroom Speed Tip 1: Labels and Collections

photographer jared platt

In this video Adobe Lightroom tutorial, Jared explains how he uses color labels in connection with smart collections to speed up process of selecting and delivering images for various purposes.

Join Jared Platt for Office Hours on November 1, 2011 at 10 AM PT for a discussion on Workflow Speed Tips in Lightroom.

Also, don’t miss Jared’s lectures and Lightroom Intensive Workshop at PartnerCon in San Diego November 7-9, 2011.

About Jared Platt

Jared Platt is a professional photographer and photographic educator. He studied photography at Arizona State University where he earned his undergraduate and masters degrees in Photography. He teaches college photography courses as well as workshops for professional photographers and provides online education for photographers and photo enthusiast throughout the world.

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This Tip for Beating Manual-Phobia is Hilarious and Effective

photographer jason groupp

When was the last time you read your equipments manuals? Have you ever?

When I ask this question, all too often I hear photographers respond with, “I don’t read manuals, who has time for that?” Yet ignoring your manual can get you into pretty scary situations, like not knowing how to shut off the “timer” function on your camera when you accidentally turned it on.

Reading this now, you’re probably saying, “Hey, old man, don’t lecture me, I know what I’m doing!”

But do you really?

I’m challenging you on this, because of the dozens of text messages I’ve received from photographers who were in the middle of shooting a wedding and had accidentally done this, and couldn’t figure out how to shut it off. Scary? You bet.

The truth is that I’m not immune to “manual-phobia” either. And it wasn’t until I got one of the best tips from a friend, that I really …

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Exporting Lightroom Catalogs from Smart Collections

photographer jared platt

A quick video from Jared Platt about Lightroom Catalogs.

Join Jared on October 6 @ 10 AM PT for a live Q&A where Jared will share everything you need to know about Lightroom Catalogs!

Don’t miss Jared Platt at PartnerCon 2011 in San Diego.  You can find times, dates and links to Jared’s Office Hours on The Photo Life Blog.

About Jared Platt

Jared Platt is a professional photographer and photographic educator. He studied photography at Arizona State University where he earned his undergraduate and masters degrees in Photography. He teaches college photography courses as well as workshops for professional photographers and provides online education for photographers and photo enthusiast throughout the world.

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Photography Notes: Doing the Hard Thing

photographer jared platt

We all go through times of struggle in life, but they are often the times of greatest personal growth. We build our muscles through our resistance to those trials. This concept of growth through struggle is also valid in our photographic lives. Doing the hard thing is where photographic depth and skill is obtained. I had the opportunity recently to assign myself such a challenge…

Photography Notes: Doing the Hard Thing from Jared Platt on Vimeo.

Special Thanks to: Shanliegh & Dustin (the bride and groom) Kimberly Jarman Leica Triple Scoop Music

About Jared Platt

Jared Platt is a professional photographer and photographic educator. He studied photography at Arizona State University where he earned his undergraduate and masters degrees in Photography. He teaches college photography courses as well as workshops for professional photographers and provides online education for photographers and photo enthusiast throughout the world.

Join one of Jared’s upcoming Lightroom Workflow Webinars here on The Photo Life!

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Learning Visual Vocabulary

Wedding Photography Tips from Rachel LaCour

It’s elementary: every sentence in a story needs a noun and a verb. The swimmer is swimming. The runner is running. The singer is singing.

Those basic elements of sentence structure tell readers all the information they need to know. Yet readers yearn for more. They don’t just want to know the facts, they want to feel something.

Consider these sentences:

The swimmer swam, shivering in the shallow, inky water that glistened in bright moonlight. The runner ran, quivering through the last laps of the steamy summer marathon. The singer sang, crooning with the fierce fervor of a song bird.

Suddenly, readers sense what the characters feel, see and experience. These sentences aren’t simply composed of nouns and verbs, they are peppered with adjectives. Words like inky, bright, steamy, and fierce boldly breathe life into a story. Without adjectives, sentences lack depth; stories lack emotion.

Adjectives are as essential to great photographs as they are …

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