Tag Archives: street photography

File Formats: RAW v JPEG

RAW & JPEG are two different types of electronic file

The principal differences between the two types are:

  • RAW files are literally the raw data as produced by the camera at the moment of pressing the shutter
  • They have no ‘built in’ file format
  • You are then free to adjust this data through Photoshop or a similar application on a computer
  • You can change; exposure, white balance, contrast, brightness, etc
  • You can return all settings to the start point and begin again
  • A RAW file is, in effect, a digital negative

 

  • JPEG’s are generated by the camera after exposure & are written onto the memory card
  • Preset data for exposure, white balance, etc will be embedded in the file & can never be removed
  • The parameters are decided by you in advance
  • Your latitude to change & make alterations afterwards are very limited
  • The file will be compressed & this is achieved by discarding information that can never be retrieved

 

If you are working digitally then having a camera that will allow you to shoot in RAW format as well as JPEG can be an advantage.
However a JPEG that is produced by the camera at the same time as a RAW is not as satisfactory as one that you generate yourself from the RAW file during post-production.
Many DSLR’s will do both RAW & JPEG at the same time but this will reduce storage capacity.

 

Why shoot RAW?

  • When creating digital prints of the highest exhibition quality & size
  • Shooting high ISO values in low light
  • When you want to make high quality monochrome conversions
  • Photographing a subject with a high dynamic range
  • When you are uncertain about the colour temperature of the subject

 

Why shoot JPEG?

  • When the end result is for small scale or low quality output
  • If you need fast workflow
  • When you need low res images for web or onscreen use
  • When you need to shoot quickly
  • When the end result requires minimal post-production
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Filed under Exposure, Lighting, Tech Tips

Borough Market, Jan 2014 – Take 2

Paul Shelley took part in the Borough Market street photography workshop last month and shot with a Nikon D300. Afterwards he edited his shots then cropped and resized them to fit into the picture boxes on the PDF layout. He and I did a final session remotely so that we could discuss and feedback before making a final PDF with his final selection of shots in place, and here they are….

Screen Shot 2014-02-18 at 07.10.49 Screen Shot 2014-02-18 at 07.11.18 Screen Shot 2014-02-18 at 07.11.41 Screen Shot 2014-02-18 at 07.12.01

In Paul’s words, ‘I loved the day at the Borough. Thanks for your coaching and guidance. I have been working on the selection of pictures and have just weeded them so that I have now got the three sets.’

All photographs © Paul Shelley 2014

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Filed under Trip Reports

Borough Market – January 2014

The first Shadows and Light workshop for 2014was shooting street photography at Borough Market, London, SE1 on January 18th.
To make this as realistic as possible to a commissioned photo shoot participants are invited to shoot their images to the specific requirements of an editorial brief, on the premise that a magazine has asked you to shoot a photo story about what makes the market vibrant and thriving.

On this occasion I decided to set myself a slightly different assignment, something that has grown out of a couple of recent conversations with Ed Kashi and his coverage of the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy in NYC and commissions from Time Magazine and NBC.

Whilst the clients busied themselves with the task at hand I used whatever spare moments I had to shoot the same brief but just using my iPhone with the 645pro and Snapseed apps. Then I placed the my selected files into the In Design file & saved as pdf’s, as you can see below…

B_M_spread

Three spreads and a cover.
As part of the ‘homework’ with this workshop participants go away and edit 3 selections in Lightroom (or similar) then mail the jpegs across so that we can generate pdf’s, thus giving them the opportunity to see their images in the context of the finished magazine spread.

There will be another Borough Market workshop at the end of 2014 so why not come along?

All pictures © Julian Hawkins 2014

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Filed under Trip Reports

The Interview – Ope O talks iPhoneography

Ope O is a Londoner developing his career as a street photographer. Primarily he uses Nikon DSLR’s along with a Fuji X100 but over the last two years he’s been exploring the rapidly expanding and developing world of iPhoneography in tandem with his iPhone 4S. With this in mind we here at Shadows & Light decided to track down Ope O & interrupt him for a short while from his all important work at London 2012 as part of the Olympic Broadcasting Services (OBS) operation.

Before we begin here’s a taste of some of Ope’s recent iPhoneography and you can see his work from the London Olympics under his greatarsenal tag that’s happening on Instagram this very moment…

‘You can observe a lot by just watching’ ~ Yogi Berra

‘Nothing is more beautiful than a line that brings out a form’ ~ Mary Beth

S&L. I’ve been following your work for some time both on Instagram and Facebook so it’s great to have the chance for a more in depth talk.

OO. That’s good.

S&L. Let’s start by me asking what it is about iPhoneography that makes it so appealing to you as a photographic tool apart from just the ease of use and ability to remain relatively unseen?

OO. The quality of the photos is quiet impressive for a mobile phone. It’s easy to operate. Plus I often get questioned on instagram about what I’m using to take pictures, some people are amazed to find out its an iPhone.

S&L. When you first started looking at iPhone photography and camera apps what led you to Instagram rather than, say Hipstamatic?

OO. Not many people were talking about it but I first heard about Instagram through social media.. And I decided to give it a ago after hearing more. I didn’t know about any other photography apps at that time as I was using an iPod touch then.

S&L. What other camera apps have you tried & what do you think of them?

OO. I’ve tried quiet a few including Camera +, VSCO Cam, Vintage Cam, Slow Shutter Cam and more. I’ve also gone through a lot of editing apps. I’ve still kept a few of these apps because each of them have different functions which I’m still interested in using, mostly to enhance the pictures I post on Instagram.

S&L. I can see from your iPhone that you sometimes use a lens type attachment to enhance the existing lens. Tell me about it & why you like it?

OO. I use a fisheye lens attachment occasionally. I really like the warped effect it gives to certain pictures. I would usually use it in tube stations where they have the long walk/pathways

‘When the road ahead seems too long, look back to see how far you’ve come’ ~ Daniella Kessler

S&L. Why have you stuck with Instagram or are you just a loyal customer?

OO. In my opinion Instagram is the best way for me to share photos on a mobile device, I tend to get a lot of feedback from other users and this motivates me to keep posting and also keeps my profile up out there.

S&L. So would you say it’s the not just the app that works for you but the whole Instagram platform?

OO. Yeah, definitely.

‘I dreamed a thousand new paths… I woke and walked my old one’ ~ Chinese proverb

S&L. You’ve mentioned that you feel iPhoneography is going to become a big thing in the immediate future. Can you elaborate?

OO. I tend to use all aspects of the app, sharing through Twitter and Facebook, etc. I’m always looking for ways to improve and with the current rise in iPhoneography there are plenty examples that I can learn from. A lot of pro photographers are starting to use this method in their work while others have won awards for it. I feel that these are the reasons it’ll become a bigger thing in the future which can only get better as the years go by.

‘It is not length of life, but depth of life’ ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

S&L. Don’t you think though that in your pro-practice you’ll have problems convincing a client to accept & thus pay for images generated on a phone? Will they take you/us seriously? Wont they argue that they could do it themselves & therefore the value of your work & what you can charge for it may be debased?

OO. Yes, I think those problems will always be there. There are still people unaware of the full scale of what can be achieved through iPhoneography. It isn’t just the picture, it’s the editing process which can boost your image to the point where it doesn’t even look like it was shot on an iPhone. It can only get better and when people start realising that, they’d start to give more time and effort to it and it will increase in value.

S&L. And with all cameras good ones are never cheap and as pro’s we’re always under pressure to have the latest hardware and software and know how to use it.

OO. Too true!

S&L. I’ve successfully printed out iPhone shots created with Hipstamatic & Instagram full frame onto A3 and had some re-produced in print. Have you tried printing images that you’ve generated in this way? What do you think of the results & what size prints have you made?

OO. I haven’t actually printed out any of my iPhone generated shots. It’s something I’ve thought about doing a couple of times but never got round to it so it’s high on my list.

S&L. Do you think that dedicating just to Instagram is going to limit your scope of action?

OO. I don’t think so, everyone should know about it now. It currently has over 80 million users making it the number 1 camera app and I feel it’ll keep getting better with various updates. Plus they’re now integrating the use of other camera/editing apps with instagram making things easier.

‘Lost time is never found again’. ~ Benjamin Franklin

S&L. Earlier you said that the iPhoneographer can pass by relatively unnoticed, does that take us back to the way in which people like Cartier-Bresson worked & the need to forever be on the lookout for the perfect moment?

OO. Yeah, it does quite a lot. When photographing people on the street I often wait to get that one shot. I’ll take more than two at least before I’m happy with what I’ve got.

S&L. As you develop your own following under the soubriquet ‘greatarsenal‘ do you see this as a purely a profile raising and marketing exercise or do you feel that it helps bring in commissions for your iPhoneography per se?

OO. When I started with Instagram, I never really thought I’d gain as much attention from it because it was just a hobby, so choosing my name wasn’t really that important for me. I’ve chosen to stick with it now as I’ve been a user for quiet a while and that’s what many other users know me as. However my Instagram profile cross-references to me as Ope O and so to my website & Facebook profile. It all ties in really.

S&L. So my final question has to be to ask where you find the quotes that tend to accompany your Instagrams?

OO. (smiles) Well, it’s like this really; I don’t really plan any of my Instagram shots, if I see something that I like and I could make a good image out of it I’ll shoot it, edit the shot, find a suitable quote (usually from brainyquote.com) then post it.

S&L. Ok Ope, many thanks for your time, I’d better let you get back to your work on the London Olympics.

The techie stuff: iPhone 4S, Instagram

All images © Ope O

The web links:

Instagram user name: greatarsenal

www.facebook.com/opeophotography

www.opeophotography.com

And the closing shot…

‘Life is an attitude. Art is an expression of life. Ideally, art as well as life should be the greatest expression possible from us as individuals’ ~ Bobbie Kilpatrick

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Filed under The Interview