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Posted 03/18/2021
Eye-catching and grotesque are words not often placed together, but those accurate descriptors are part of the charm and beauty in the still life and food photography of Emma Ressel. Ressel joins us on this episode of the B&H Photography Podcast to talk about her work, which takes inspiration from, among other things, Dutch Master paintings and her own upbringing in Maine. We discuss with Ressel the evolution of her work and how she attempts to balance the genres of food photography and still life. Many of her images contain aspects of decay and death, and in her personal fine art photography, food is one way to address these topics. She also is a commercial photographer of food, wine, and still life work commissioned by New York Magazine, Refinery29, and other publications and clients. Ressel works with both a 4 x 5" Toya medium format film camera and with a Nikon DSLR, and we find out how and why she chooses which system to utilize. We also talk about her varied lighting choices and how she came to food photography not knowing much about professional workflows and food stylists and how that may have helped her define her look. She is very hands-on with her work, and we discuss sourcing items as diverse as coral snakes and pig’s heads. We also consider issues of waste and overconsumption and how her work attempts to deal with those ideas within an industry that uses food for purposes not directly related to human sustenance. Ressel also tells us about an inspiring artists residency in which she tackled the subject of a decaying whale carcass. This is a very well-rounded conversation, at ease discussing the technical issues of using a view camera as easily as literary inspiration, and how to walk the fine line between working as a commercial food photographer and pushing the genre to uncomfortable new places. Join us for a listen and have a look at Ressel’s Artfare page to see her larger prints. Guest: Emma Ressel Photograph © Emma Ressel From “Trouble in the Garden” © Emma Ressel From “Trouble in the Garden” © Emma Ressel From “Trouble in the Garden” © Emma Ressel From “Olives in the Street” © Emma Ressel From “Olives in the Street” © Emma Ressel From “Olives in the Street” © Emma Ressel From “Insatiable Hunger and the Peacock’s Plume” © Emma Ressel Commission for New York Magazine © Emma Ressel Commission for Wines of Sicily/Refinery29 © Emma Ressel © Emma Ressel Previous Pause Next Host: Allan Weitz Senior Creative Producer: John Harris Senior Producer: Jason Tables Executive Producer: Shawn C Steiner
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Posted 09/09/2020
This is a wonderful conversation for fans of mirrorless cameras, of classic lens design, of the venerable M-mount, and, really, of photography. The joy that our host Allan Weitz exudes while discussing a few of his current favorite lenses is as contagious as it is educational. And I feel that this episode provides a bolt of creative curiosity that might infuse my own photography. For this week’s episode of the B&H Photography Podcast, we asked Weitz to draw up a list of 10 favorite lenses from his personal collection. To be sure, these are not lenses sitting on a shelf or behind glass; these are accessible, affordable lenses that he incorporates regularly into his photography practice, but each has a certain signature or special feature that merits recognition. Most, like the Voigtländer VM 40mm f/2.8 Heliar Lens for Sony E-Mount or the 7Artisans Photoelectric 50mm f/1.1 Lens for Leica M can be purchased new, while some, such as the Zeiss Hologon T* 16mm f/8 lens, are still readily found in the used market. Others, like the Nikon NIKKOR 50mm f/1.2 lens, are perennial favorites, while the Voigtländer Nokton 75mm f/1.5 Aspherical Lens seems classic but is relatively new to the market. While discussing these lenses, we stumble upon a mound of good photography chatter, including practical uses for these optics, tips for using extension tubes and mount adapters, notes on camera history, and plain simple fun facts. Toward the end of the episode we talk about the B&H Used Department, and Jason Tables and I share our current favorite lenses, as well. Join us for this breezy but informative episode and let us know your favorite lenses in the Comments section, below. Photograph © Allan Weitz Nikon NIKKOR 50mm f/1.2 Lens © Allan Weitz Zeiss 16mm f/8 Hologon Lens © Allan Weitz Voigtländer Nokton 75mm f/1.5 Aspherical Lens © Allan Weitz ZEISS Biogon T* 25mm f/2.8 ZM Lens © Allan Weitz Voigtländer Heliar 50mm f/3.5 Lens Voigtländer VM 40mm f/2.8 Heliar Lens for Sony E-Mount Three Lenses © Allan Weitz Taken with Zeiss Biogon 25mm f/2.8 ZM using Leica OUFRO Extension Tube © Allan Weitz Taken with Zeiss Hologon T* 16mm f/8 lens © Allan Weitz Taken with Voigtlander Heliar 50mm f/3.5 lens © Allan Weitz Taken with Voigtlander Nokton 75mm f/1.5 lens © Allan Weitz Taken with the Nikon NIKKOR 50mm f/1.2 AI-S lens © Allan Weitz Taken with Nikon Reflex-NIKKOR 500mm f/5 lens © Allan Weitz Taken with Nikon Reflex-NIKKOR 500mm f/5 lens © Allan Weitz Previous Pause Next Host: Allan Weitz Senior Creative Producer: John Harris Senior Producer: Jason Tables Executive Producer: Lawrence Neves
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Posted 07/14/2020
On this week’s episode of the B&H Photography Podcast, we discuss lighting gear from the best, with the best, Shar Taylor and Cliff Hausner, of Profoto. Taylor is a past guest on our show and Hausner is one of the most recognized people in the New York photo industry, having worked for a variety of companies and events, and being an established photographer in his own right. While we do talk specifically about Profoto’s latest light modifiers and AirX updates for iPhones, we also take a minute to get to know the work of our guests, including Hausner’s work lighting the annual team photo for the New York Giants football team and his biannual trip to Washington, D.C., to light the official photo of the U.S. House of Representatives. During the second half of our conversation, we really dig into the range of lighting options that Profoto has to offer for the professional studio photographer, including the Pro-10 Power Pack, and for the photographer who needs portable lighting solutions, such as the C1 Plus. Our guests also offer insights as to why Profoto’s emphasis on simple design and ease of use attracts new customers who might be timid venturing into the world of off-camera lighting, as well as seasoned professionals who recognize the value of a proven system. We discuss the incorporation of LED lighting into their systems, the advantages of TTL, and compatibility across lines. You can be sure that both the incredible B10 and B10 Plus Flash Heads are discussed, as is the D2i Industrial Monolight. Join us for this very informative and, at times, hilarious conversation. Guests: Cliff Hausner and Shar Taylor Profoto Air Remote TTL Profoto B10 OCF Flash Head Profoto C1 Plus Profoto D2i Industrial 1000Ws Monolight Profoto OCF II Grid and Gel Kit Profoto Pro-10 2400 AirTTL Power Pack Previous Pause Next Host: Allan Weitz Senior Creative Producer: John Harris Senior Producer: Jason Tables Executive Producer: Lawrence Neves
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Posted 01/15/2020
Imagine the privilege of being present at the creation of one of the “wonders of the world,” and then imagine being asked to document the magnitude—and the details—of that creation. Our guest on today’s episode of the B&H Photography Podcast has just that privilege and that responsibility and, as he puts it, this telescope may “change the way we understand our universe.” Chris Gunn has been a NASA contract photographer for almost twenty years but, for the past ten, he has dedicated himself to the James Webb Space Telescope and documenting the construction and eventual launch of this spacecraft, which will replace the Hubble as NASA’s most powerful telescope. We speak with Gunn about all aspects of his job and, specifically, about the gorgeous medium format images he creates that are made available to the public. Gunn is responsible for documenting the construction process, which includes portraits of scientists, as well as macro shots of screws, and he relates how he has “taken the extra step” to evolve as a photographer, incorporating medium format photography and detailed setups. Gunn must be prepared to shoot any style of photo and he discusses his daily responsibilities, how his gear has evolved over time, the lighting he chooses, and his interaction with the hundreds and technicians and scientists he works with regularly. We also discuss marketing yourself as a photographer and the specific challenges that make his job like no other, including working in giant “clean rooms,” accepting that your work is immediately in the public domain, and incorporating the aesthetics from science-fiction films. Sitting in on this recording is our own member of the B&H Space Force, writer Todd Vorenkamp. Join us for this fascinating episode in which we learn about this incredible spacecraft and the work that goes into documenting its creation and check out our 2016 episode, in which we speak with the imaging scientists from the  Hubble Telescope mission. Guest: Chris Gunn Above photograph © Chris Gunn Chamber A Door © Chris Gunn/NASA Blanket Inspection © Chris Gunn/NASA Wings Deployed © Chris Gunn/NASA Lights Out Inspection © Chris Gunn/NASA Container Doors © Chris Gunn/NASA Previous Pause Next Host: Allan Weitz Senior Creative Producer: John Harris Senior Producer: Jason Tables Executive Producer: Lawrence Neves
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Posted 11/06/2019
On today’s episode of the B&H Photography Podcast, we welcome photojournalist and sports photographer Nick Didlick to our show. Didlick has been a freelance shooter, a staff photographer, an agency photographer for Reuters and UPI and, while covering the world news, was nominated for two Pulitzer Prizes. He also is an accomplished videographer, editor, and producer, and has served as Photo Chief for the 2010 Vancouver Winter Olympics and as Director of Photography at the Vancouver Sun, where he oversaw the staff change from film to digital photography. As a photographer, Didlick has always been ahead of the technological curve, willing to try new cameras and transmission systems and push existing technology to its limits. He joins us to discuss his technical evolution as a sports photographer and the features that he considers important to balance technological advances with age-old experience of craft. We ask Didlick to look back on his career and discuss important steps in the evolution of his kit, including autofocus features, compact lenses, telephoto extenders, remote control, wireless transmission and, of course, the development of digital photography. We also look ahead to improvements in metadata and artificial intelligence and his overarching philosophy that all advances should be embraced if they are needed to improve your workflow. Throughout the episode, Didlick pokes fun at my “old” DSLR technology in favor of his Sony Alpha a9 II Mirrorless camera but, in doing so, he underscores his point, that as photographers, the hardest part of advancing your skill set is “un-learning” what you considered fundamental and embrace the changes that can improve your photography. Join us for this rollicking and enjoyable episode. Guest: Nick Didlick Above Photograph © Nick Didlick Wayne Gretzky © Nick Didlick Ronald Reagan and Mikhail Gorbachev © Nick Didlick Remnants of Pan Am Flight 103, Lockerbie, Scotland © Nick Didlick Tiger Woods © Nick Didlick 2019 NCAA Final Four © Nick Didlick Lindsey Vonn © Nick Didlick Rodeo © Nick Didlick Usain Bolt stumbles and falls during race © Nick Didlick IAAF World Athletics Championship, 2019 © Nick Didlick Venus Williams © Nick Didlick Sloane Stephens with U.S. Open trophy, 2018 ©Nick Didlick Aibo dogs from Sony © Nick Didlick Nick Didlick and Allan Weitz © John Harris Previous Pause Next Host: Allan Weitz Senior Creative Producer: John Harris Senior Producer: Jason Tables Executive Producer: Lawrence Neves
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Posted 09/25/2019
When one of the world’s most “followed” photographers is available for a conversation, you make the time to talk with him, and when that photographer is acclaimed adventure, landscape, travel, and surf photographer Chris Burkard, expect that conversation to include some serious insights into the passion and ambition it takes to create the beautiful images he makes. On this week’s episode of the B&H Photography Podcast, we speak with Burkard about a range of subjects—and this conversation does not disappoint. We get right into it by asking about his penchant for shooting in frigid locations, and how stubbornness and even persistence can be the enemy of good photography in sub-zero temperatures. We discuss the composition of his photographs and how that is indicative of his views on nature, and we dig into his “origin story” and why clients began to come to him for the kind of photography he creates. In general, however, we stick to the nuts and bolts of his photography. We learn why he prefers mirrorless cameras, specifically the Sony Alpha a7R IV, how he organizes his commercial workflow to make time for the adventures he craves, and how he sets time aside to be with his young family. After a break, we ask Burkard to walk us through the creation of a few of his best-known images. Not only does he offer insight into the photographic aspects, but he elaborates to give us a better understanding of the remote locations he finds and the teamwork needed. To quote Burkard, “to better understand how the Earth was made, we must look at it from new perspectives.” Join us for this eye-opening conversation. Guest: Chris Burkard Aleutian Islands, 2013 © Chris Burkard Westfjord, Iceland, 2016 © Chris Burkard Highlining in Joshua Tree with Garrison Rowland on Hall of Horrors formation during the Supermoon, 2016 © Chris Burkard Skógar, Iceland, 2014 © Chris Burkard Westfjord, Iceland, 2016 © Chris Burkard Previous Pause Next   Host: Allan Weitz Senior Creative Producer: John Harris Senior Producer: Jason Tables Executive Producer: Lawrence Neves
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Posted 05/29/2019
On this week’s episode of the B&H Photography Podcast, we welcome four “makers” who have designed and built impressive imaging tools with their own vision and hands. Their locations, the formats, the materials, and the final products all differ wildly, but the D.I.Y. spirit of the engineer, the tinkerer, the photographer, and the entrepreneur are shared by our four guests. We get a sense of how each came to their product, developed it, and are trying to market it. First, we speak with Sam Cornwell, inventor of The Solarcan, a unique camera designed to produce “extreme time exposures” that capture the sun’s path across the sky; and yes, it is a can. Cornwell offers his love of photography, astronomy, and repurposing household objects as the seeds for this pinhole camera, which comes with its own piece of Ilford 5 x 7" photo paper already inside. After a successful Kickstarter campaign and a lot of work, his fully packaged invention is available for purchase from B&H. Next, we are joined by Steve Lloyd of Chroma Cameras, who liked large format field cameras so much he went and designed one of his own. His are the first field cameras made of laser-cut acrylic. Appropriately available in a choice of unconventional colors, Chroma cameras feature interchangeable film backs that attach to the camera using magnets, which make it possible to switch quickly between 4 x 5" film to roll-film backs. After a short break, Filippo Nishino, of the Swiss company I’m Back, discusses the invention created by his partner, Samuel Mello Medieros, which can capture digital images with a 35mm film camera body. Available in a universal model or numerous customized covers, the back attaches physically to your film camera, enabling high-res digital image capture. Many years in development, the I’m Back is available to the public and on sale at B&H. Our final guest is Ethan Moses, of Cameradactyl, which is his company and his passion. Cameradactyl, along with its “subsidiary,” Butter Grip, makes 3D printed cameras, parts, and accessories, including his incredible CAMERADACTYL 4 x 5 Field Camera and X-Pin 35mm Pinhole Camera Kit. He also sells a wide range of practical and colorful grips and camera accessories, and might make something for your needs, if you ask nicely enough. Guests: Sam Cornwell, Steve Lloyd, Filippo Nishino, and Ethan Moses Solarcan with Red Packaging Solarcan mounted for extended exposure Solarcan sample image Chroma Camera Folded Chroma Camera Large 4 x 5 Field Chroma Camera I’m Back universal digital back I’m Back cover for Canon AE-1/A-1 cameras I’m Back cover for Leica M1 – M4 cameras Cameradactyl Blue Field Camera Cameradactyl ButterMeter Cameradactyl Butter Grip – Red Cameradactyl 4 x 5 Hand Camera Family Portrait Previous Pause Next   Host: Allan Weitz Senior Creative Producer: John Harris Senior Producer: Jason Tables Executive Producer: Lawrence Neves
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Posted 02/20/2019
We’re not even two months into 2019 and there have already been several announcements for new cameras, lenses, and even a new format for a major camera manufacturer. On this week’s episode of the B&H Photography Podcast, we list the many new announcements and, along with our guests, Shawn Steiner and Andrea Ortado, offer any insights we have in terms of specs, hands-on comparisons, and general opinions. We begin with the new Canon EOS RP Mirrorless Digital Camera and mention a few of the many lenses on the road map for this new full-frame mirrorless series. We also discuss the new Nikon lenses for its full-frame mirrorless Z-mount camera, including the NIKKOR Z 14-30mm f/4 S lens and the NIKKOR Z 24-70mm f/2.8 S lens. From Canon and Nikon, we move on to Panasonic, and the huge announcement of its full-frame mirrorless cameras, the Lumix DC-S1 Mirrorless Digital Camera and the Lumix DC-S1R Mirrorless Digital Camera, as well as the company's L-Mount Alliance with Sigma and Leica, and new lenses such as the Lumix S 24-105mm f/4 Macro O.I.S. lens, the Lumix S PRO 70-200mm f/4 O.I.S. lens, and the Lumix S PRO 50mm f/1.4 lens. We also highlight the impressive new Olympus flagship camera, the OM-D E-M1X Mirrorless Digital Camera. After a break, we discuss the new Sony Alpha a6400 Mirrorless Digital Camera and the reasons it will appeal to vloggers, and the new FUJIFILM X-T30 Mirrorless Digital Camera. FUJIFILM also announced a new XF 16mm f/2.8 R WR lens and the FUJIFILM GF 100-200mm f/5.6 R LM OIS WR lens for its medium format GFX cameras. We continue with a brief chat on new point-and-shoot cameras, including the Ricoh GR III Digital Camera, the Panasonic Lumix DC-FZ1000 II Digital Camera, and the FUJIFILM FinePix XP140 Digital Camera. Finally, we close with a brief comment on firmware, accessories such as the Wacom Cintiq 16HD Creative Pen Display, and thoughts on the new full-frame mirrorless cameras. Join us for this very informative episode. Guests: Andrea Ortado and Shawn Steiner Allan Weitz, Shawn Steiner, and Andrea Ortado John Harris   Host: Allan Weitz Senior Creative Producer: John Harris Senior Producer: Jason Tables Executive Producer: Lawrence Neves
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Posted 01/03/2019
As a companion to last week’s end-of-year review episode, and as a way of kicking off the new year, we will discuss our own photographic new year’s resolutions and gear wish lists on today’s episode of the B&H Photography Podcast. As our most ardent listeners know, Allan, Jason, and I have wildly different photographic styles and our gear bags reflect those styles. We will start by talking about the photo-related goals that we each have for the coming year. Perhaps inspired by some of the guests we have had on the show this year, or our “What is Photography?” project, I have a couple of long-delayed projects to which I'd like to return, Jason is looking to continue his long-exposure work with urban cityscapes, and Allan is going to dig back into his film archive to digitize long-hidden gems. We will talk a bit about our current work and the techniques we want to improve this year and, after a short break, we will talk a bit about gear. Going around the table, we will discuss what we are currently shooting with and what new (or used) gear we may purchase to help us achieve our new year’s goals. Allan will start by describing the “Franken-slide copier” that he built with a Micro-NIKKOR 55mm lens, a Bolt Macro Light, and his trusty Sony a7R II. Jason is looking to experiment with long telephoto lenses, such as the Sony FE 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6 GM OSS lens and a new 3 Legged Thing tripod, and I want to get back to my street photography roots with a fixed-lens camera such as the Fujifilm X100F or one of the Ricoh GR series cameras. While we do talk gear, this episode is mostly about our shared passions for photography and keeping creativity an important part of our 2019. What photography goals do you have for the coming year? Allan Weitz's "Franken-slide Copier" Beal's Island, Maine- 35mm slide image digitized by the "Franken-slide Copier" © Allan Weitz Beal's Island, Maine- 35mm slide image digitized by the "Franken-slide Copier" © Allan Weitz Previous Pause Next   Host: Allan Weitz Senior Creative Producer: John Harris Senior Producer: Jason Tables Executive Producer: Lawrence Neves
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Posted 11/01/2018
When you think of an image from your favorite movie, what comes to mind? Is it a well-edited sequence, a dramatic crescendo, or perhaps simply a static photo, maybe even the poster art itself? If it is a static image, chances are it’s a photo taken by an on-set “still” photographer. On today’s episode of the B&H Photography Podcast, we discuss this craft with two photographers who make their living  as still photographers, working on location and in-studio on television and film productions alongside the camera assistants, boom operators, grips, DPs and myriad crew members, who make the movie magic. Joining us are  JoJo Whilden, a fine art and still photographer who has worked on numerous films, including Silver Linings Playbook and The Fighter and television series such as Orange Is the New Black, and Homeland. Her clients include HBO, Netflix, CBS, Sony, and Killer Films. She is the 2018 recipient of The Society of Camera Operators Lifetime Achievement Award in Still Photography. Also joining us in the studio is David Giesbrecht, an editorial and still photographer with credits on The House of Cards, The Blacklist, Mr. Robot, Jessica Jones, and many other programs and films. We speak with Giesbrecht and Whilden about the specific photography skills required on-set, the working relationship within a film crew, their gear setup, and the changes that the profession has seen with the onset of digital streaming, cell phones, mirrorless cameras, social media, and the growth of the episodic television series. This is a very informative episode about a craft that is often overlooked and misunderstood. Guests: JoJo Whilden and David Giesbrecht  From “Orange is the New Black”, Photograph Courtesy JoJo Whilden From “Boardwalk Empire”, Photograph Courtesy JoJo Whilden From “Olive Kitteridge”, Photograph Courtesy JoJo Whilden From “A Late Quartet”, Photograph Courtesy JoJo Whilden From “The Fighter”, Photograph Courtesy JoJo Whilden John Turturro directing “Fading Gigolo”, Photograph Courtesy JoJo Whilden From “Jessica Jones”, Photograph Courtesy David Giesbrecht From “Jessica Jones”, Photograph Courtesy David Giesbrecht From “Luke Cage”, Photograph Courtesy David Giesbrecht From “House of Cards”, Photograph Courtesy David Giesbrecht Box art from “The Tick”, Photograph Courtesy David Giesbrecht JoJo Whilden and David Giesbrecht hamming it up in the podcast studio Previous Pause Next   Host: Allan Weitz Senior Creative Producer: John Harris Senior Producer: Jason Tables Executive Producer: Lawrence Neves
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