Also in this issue:
- More features nobody's talking about
- Upcoming books and seminars
The Importance of Pre-Visualizing Your Image
In my seminars I give examples of how pre-visualizing your images before you even pick up your camera is the single best thing you can do that will result in high-impact photos. It helps you solidify in your mind the rules of composition you're employing, and increases your awareness of your lighting and your backgrounds. If your goal is to have people say "Wow!" to your images, this technique gets you there faster than, say, buying more gear.
Going further, to help me in this regard I'll sometimes sketch out my compositions first. To wit:
|The sketch (left), and the final product (right).|
Which leads me to the cover of the new A9 II ebook. The A9 II is the most advanced sports camera out there; but I've never been a fan of sports, and frankly I don't even enjoy shooting sports. So I could have just hung out at a sporting event just to get a few cool shots (like I did for the cover of the A6400 book last year) but for this book I wanted a higher-impact shot for the cover.
And so I started brainstorming by sketching out compositions of things that I associated with sports. One of my ideas was for a very graphic shot of a boxer getting punched in the head by his opponent. The lighting would be dramatic; the sweat would fly, and the distortion on the face would be cringe-worthy. It would be a strong subject and no distracting background, which is the kind of composition that draws the eye.
|You can see now why I took up photography.|
|Tomasz Adamek, right, punches his opponent Travis Walker in a heavyweight boxing match in 2012. (AP Photo/Tim Larsen)|
But there were problems. It was most likely not taken with a Sony camera, the shot was 8 years old, and I wasn't able to get any licensing information from AP Photo.
But I still loved the concept, as it conveyed "This Camera is for Great Sports Photography" in one image. Could I stage such a shot instead? I researched a few local boxing gyms. I also asked a few out-of-work actors about being on the receiving end: "If I paid you $200, would you help me recreate this image?" (Spoiler alert: $200 wasn't enough.) Staging this shot would just be too problematic.
I finally decided to use a different hard-to-get action shot for the cover instead. And with that, my book on the amazing Sony Alpha 9 II camera was complete!
I also made a video talking about even more Features that Nobody's Talking about with the A7R IV and A9 II. Check it out after some announcements below.
In the Pipeline
- Well, the A9 II ebook is out now. :-) Including all printed and e-reader versions.
- The ebook on the Fujifilm X-Pro3 is now in the first installment of its rolling release. (Tony releases his books in sections, so you don't have to wait until the whole thing is finished in order to benefit from his insights.)
- The ebook on the Sony A6100 and A6600 cameras should be out by mid-March. Pre-order your copy now at a discount!
- Seattle / Tacoma, Washington – March 14-15, 2020 Learn More and Sign Up!
- Portland, Oregon – March 21-22, 2020. Learn More and Sign Up!
- Kansas City, MO – May 23-24, 2020 Learn More and Sign Up!
- St. Louis, MO May 30-31, 2020: Learn More and Sign Up!
- New Zealand November 7-8, 2020 (Email me to be added to the waiting list!)
- Kiawah Island, South Carolina Spring, 2021: (Email me to be added to the waiting list!)
- Nice, France Fall, 2021 (Email me to be added to the waiting list!)
More Features People Aren't Talking About
November's blog post proved quite popular and so I decided to expand on the idea - here I've created a video which demonstrates the "wake-up-the-camera-while-it's-off-and-download-pictures-to-your-phone" feature, plus more advanced features that people aren't talking about. Here you go:
Until next time,
Yours Truly, Gary Friedman