- 365 Photo a Day Challenge: Start the Year Right
- Having to Explain the Beautiful Concept of Film Photography to Modern Kids (Video)
- Unprecedented Photographs of Real Life in North Korea (Video)
Posted: 06 Jan 2014 10:54 PM PST
I like to think of myself as an avid photographer, but there are times when the creativity wanes and the inspiration dries up. The trigger finger stiffens from lack of use and generally I start to suffer from photographer’s malaise. This is when auto-pilot needs to kick in and get me up and running again. How do I switch on the auto pilot? With the 365 Photo Challenge–a photo a day for a whole year.
A photo a day keeps the staleness away. Staleness and boredom with a hobby like photography is a killer. Before you know it, you’re advertising your gear on eBay. I have found a simple way to keep the pot boiling on the stove. All my students know this one. It is simple, and it’s most certainly not time consuming.
There are two ways to approach this:
With the advent of Facebook, blogs, and Flickr you can really make this interesting and even generate regular interest in your images. Change your Facebook profile every day replacing it with your daily 365 Challenge shot. People will eagerly log in every day to see what photo you have loaded. Not only will this make you more enthusiastic but will generate an interest in your images. The same goes for your blog. Upload a daily image and makes some comments on it. This way you can keep a record of the how, when, why and who of each image. This could actually turn into a form of photo journal in which you document your life over 365 days.This could be the beginnings of a really fun experience. The bottom line is that you will keep your creativity, inspiration, and enthusiasm alive and at the same time learning and entertaining others. If you can find a way to make your photography fun and inspiring, it will never die. You will continually shoot photos throughout the year.
One more tip before we go. It is great to sit down and write down ideas and thoughts about what you will do, what themes to shoot, and how you will display the images, BUT, unless you get out there and just do it you will get nowhere. If you will run with the idea I can guarantee you that in 365 days time, you won’t believe the improvement and progress you’ve made as you learn digital photography. What the 365 photos show you is just how you have improved; they become your timeline of growth in creativity and skill.
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Posted: 06 Jan 2014 08:47 PM PST
In today’s modern era, some photography enthusiasts might argue that smartphones and digital cameras have rendered film photography obsolete, but for those who remember the thrill of picking up developed photos at the camera store, of tearing into the envelope to see how in the world those carefully-crafted shots turned out, film photography is anything but outdated—it’s timeless.
This short video by BuzzFeedYellow attempts to explain the beauty and allure of film photography to tech savvy youngsters who have probably never taken a picture without the instant gratification of a review screen and a delete button:
Film photography transports us back to a time when the world moved a little slower and we all paid a little bit more attention. It requires us to understand the more technical aspects of photography, certainly, but it also causes us to carefully consider the content and composition of each shot before clicking the shutter—because it has to be solid the first time or the moment is lost.
There’s just something about holding a printed photograph in your hands and remembering that moment—the one that was important enough to merit using up one of the 24 or 36 shots on that particular roll of film. There’s something about not knowing what the shot will look like until you pull it from the stack—feeling giddily satisfied if you nailed it, or feeling sharply disappointed if you dropped the ball, motivated to do better next time.
Simply put, digital photography is spectacular; it has forever changed the craft and will continue to propel photographers to greater and greater heights—but film photography shouldn’t be discounted as a genre because it doesn’t offer instant gratification.
Waiting fills us with wonder.
Go to full article: Having to Explain the Beautiful Concept of Film Photography to Modern Kids (Video)
Posted: 06 Jan 2014 11:27 AM PST
North Korea is a nation of which little is known or understood in the rest of the world. Their government’s notorious mistrust of outsiders keeps the country shrouded in mystery, almost never allowing visitors from the West to enter. The few who do are usually given a carefully controlled experience, only permitted to see places and events that the government deems appropriate. Photojournalist David Guttenfelder, however, hopes to expose the reality of daily life for North Koreans in a way few, if any, have been able to do before:
In 2011, when the Associated Press decided to open a bureau in North Korea, Guttenfelder volunteered to be their resident photographer. Having spent approximately 100 days per year in the closely guarded country, he has been able to gradually open a window on North Korea to the rest of the world with his photographs.
On his first visit to the capitol Pyongyang, Guttenfelder remembers, he was scarcely allowed to see anything: the windows of the bus he rode on were blocked out with curtains; the windows of his hotel with black plastic. “I had the feeling that there was nothing real there– that it was like the Truman show, it was all a facade,” he says. However, over time, he has steadily gained more access to scenes typical in the life of real North Koreans– even in rural areas, from which outsiders are generally forbidden.
Spontaneity and mobility are key for Guttenfelder’s more revealing images. Now that he is no longer limited to windowless vehicles and rooms, he gets many great shots with small, portable film cameras while traveling from one place to the next. Even more importantly, in February 2013, the North Korean government began permitting mobile phones to enter the country. Since then, Guttenfelder’s phone camera has become perhaps his most useful tool, enabling him to instantly send images to Associated Press– and to share them on Instagram.
The allowance of mobile phones in North Korea may mark a tremendous change in the way the nation will be seen by the world in years to come. By releasing their stronghold on what photography is allowed or forbidden, the government makes it possible for real life– “unguarded, unscripted moments,” in Guttenfelder’s words– to finally come to light.
Go to full article: Unprecedented Photographs of Real Life in North Korea (Video)
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