Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Portrait today...Photography Blogs

Today will be an easy going blog post. Nothing profound today. I just felt like sharing some of the photography and camera related blogs and websites that I follow. Photography is a passion of mine. In a future post, I might share how I got into, why I enjoy it, and what I like photographing. There are others that I learn from and take inspiration from. Some of these sights are about specific topics, others are more or less opinion or rumor blogs. Others are just blogs of famous photographers. I talk about each one a bit and provide links after the jump.

First off is Ken Rockwell's blog at kenrockwell.com.  Rockwell has been a professional photographer for many years, and has relied on his blog to support the bulk of his income for several years.  Rockwell gives advice on how to use your camera and to get the pictures you want, stressing that it is not the camera or lens that gets the good shots, but the person using them.  He also does a lot of reviews of various cameras and lenses from many different manufactures, including Nikon, Canon, Leica, and more.  Unlike some reviewers though, he does not get his samples from the manufacture for free and he is not paid to do the reviews, so they are all unbiased.  They are not completely scientif reviews, but rather, they are based off of real world use, how the average person might use the camera, and are educated opinions based on years of experience.  One note, Rockwell is rather opinionated, and a little sarcastic and forward in his thoughts, but he knows what he is talkig about.


Next up is Joe McNally's blog at joemcnally.com/blog.  Joe McNally is a world famous photographer.  He does work for National Geographic and was the last staff photographer used by Life Magazine.  He has been all over the world to photograph people and events.  McNally is an avid Nikon user, and is brilliant when it comes to lighting his subjects.  He has been known to use over a dozen speedlights (small flash) to light a subject.  He also does occasional seminars and workshops.  I haven't gotten to attend one, but I would love to.  One of his bigger projects is called "Faces of Ground Zero".  Using the "giant polaroid" in New York, he photographed may of the surviving heros of 9/11.  On his blog, he'll usually discuss a project he has worked on, perhaps his method for shooting it and lighting it, and some of the story behind the subject.  He'll also occasionaly talkl about his personal life and people he knows.  He's a great photographer.


Next is the Strobist Blog at strobist.blogspot.com.  This blog is all about using flash with your photography.  If you ever wanted to learn how to use one or more flashes with your camera, this is the website for you.  There are numerous, in depth articles on everything from how aperature and shutter speed affcet flash, to modifying your flash with things like softboxes, to balancing flash with ambient light, to using multiple flashes.  There are a couple sections of the blog, "Lighting 101" and "Lighting 102" that go pretty in depth into all of the mechanics of using flash.  If you are new to flash, or just don't know much about it, I would start there.  There are also many posts on assignments that the author has done, and he will go into detail about his thinking process for the shot, and how he lit it.  Very informative.  The author is a Nikon user, but the information on the blog is applicable to any manufacturer.  If  you want to expand your photographic horizons, check it out.


Next is Nikon Rumors at nikonrumors.com.  This is a site for Nikon related news and rumors about upcoming cameras and lenses.  The author of this blog will only report rumors that are at least somewhat reliable and credible, not just anything that comes across the wire.  This is where I get my news on new product announements and what Nikon has in store for us.  Being a Nikon user myself, this is the site I follow, but there are sister sites that follow other manufactures such as Canon, Sony, Leica, etc.


Next is the Hudson's Blog at hudsonphotos.blogspot.com.  Jason Hudson and his wife Kori are considered to be the top wedding photographers in Arkansas, and are also nationally recognized as among the best in the country.  They have won numerous awards and have been nationally ranked in industry magazines.  They use a more photojournalistic style and are very good with processing.  Jason Hudson did the wedding photography for my wife and I, and we were very happy with the results.  They live in Northwest Arkansas, and shoot primarily in the Arkansas, Missouri, Oklahoma region, but they will travel to other places around the country as well.  Their blog is primarily a photo blog with samples from the many photo jobs that they get, along with some they will get of their family (they have 4 kids).  They have a link to their business website on their blog if you are interested in hiring them.  Take a look at their photos though.  They're beautifully done and can be very inspirational in the creative sense.


Lastly I'll mention Adorama at adorama.com.  Adorama is a camera/video/photogrpahy store.  They are based in New York where they have a physical store, and they are one of the largest camera stores in the US.  They've been in business since the 70s, and were one of the first major camera stores to embrace the internet.  They sell most anything photography related, and pretty much any brand.  They aren't always the cheapest, but often times they are.  They have great customer service and great products.  If you're looking to buy a camera, lens, or other equipment, be sure to check them out.


That's all for now.  In the future I'll share some of the other blogs and websites that I follow on a regular basis that don't necessarily have to do with photography.  I'll also eventually add a "links" section of some sort where I'll put the links to all of these sites and blogs that I follow.  Have a great day!

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