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Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Allen Rokach Travel Workshop!



Yesterday, travel photographer Allen Rokach gave a lecture on his work to a full house. Displaying examples of his own photography, Allen showed the audience what makes a good image, how to tell a story, and much more. Those who sat in on the seminar asked questions about his subjects, his methods, and his materials. Check out Allen's website at http://www.allenrokach.com and see some of the images he shared with us!

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Q&A with Jeff Hirsch (Foto Care owner)

Q&A with Foto Care owner Jeff Hirsch

Foto Care was established in 1968 and has been in the hands of Jeff Hirsch for over 22 years.

1. In your perspective, how has photography changed from when you started in this industry?

Images are immediately shared with millions of unseen eyes connected by mobile devices and networks. The era of a tedious or intimate evening looking at carousel slide trays in a darkened room or escaping to a darkroom to process film and print is in the rearview mirror just like tinkering with a car on the weekend. Technical advances have opened up possibilities only dreamed of before in scientific journals to be open and available to anyone who can afford a mobile phone with built in camera.  


2. How important is building relationships with the photographic community in today’s photo world?
It’s essential. Photography as both a form of communication and art is nothing without the ability to share. Foto Care is in business with the intention of helping customers succeed and grow as photographers. Our past present and future is a road paved by the customers we serve and to that end we do our best to help them achieve success. It’s a two way street and that’s what makes it exciting. To meet and serve not just the photographers and artists with recognizable names but also the students and newcomers that become trailblazers is part of what makes coming to work each day as invigorating as the first cup of coffee.


3. How has NYC changed since you’ve opened Foto Care?
It’s cleaner, safer and more expensive to live.  Cities are magnets that attract young and old alike to occupational and cultural opportunities that are in short supply elsewhere.


41 W 22nd St, New York, NY 10010


4. How is it running a business in NYC?
I can’t think of a better place to work.

5. What are your thoughts on the new generation’s versions of photography? In example, taking photos on iPhones and having them hung in a gallery?
What difference does it matter what tool an artist uses or which camera a photographer points toward their subject matter. You have to choose a point of view and pick the moment to make the photograph regardless of the device. Image making by mobile devices have eroded the market for point and shoot cameras but so what? It hopefully will push camera manufacturers to make better cameras.


6. What trends are you seeing in the photography world today? 
Print it larger, shoot in darkness, Mirrorless cameras, 4K, 6K, 8K, 3D, 4D

7.What do you love most about photography?
Every day is a new day. When things get boring look up, down or behind yourself and open your eyes. Everyday on every street corner there’s a smile, a gesture or a passing shadow that is just waiting to be photographed.

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Rest In Peace Mary Ellen Mark



Mary Ellen Mark
1940-2015

Mary Ellen was a dear friend that we will sadly miss. 
She was a Great Photographer, Mentor and Teacher.
She was all of the above and more.  
For over Fifty years the world came to know her through the images she made.
Her Family of friends knew her from the hugs, kisses, phone calls & visits
She was tough as nails with a heart of gold. 
We celebrate the Life you led and photographs you made.


Friday, April 10, 2015

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

J Spring Fashion Show

Our Rental Department sponsored Jessica Minh Anh and the rest of J Model Management with their Spring Fashion Show. We shot behind the scenes at their fashion shoot, and also got a front row seat at the show!  We had a blast.














Thursday, March 5, 2015

Cinevate's Morpheus Dolly using the iPhone 6!

Cinevate stopped by yesterday and showed us their cool gadgets. This is a walking in store demonstration using their Morpheus Dolly! Oh yeah, and this was shot on an iPhone 6! We are very impressed. Available in our Rental Department.


video

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

How To Batch Edit in Photoshop Using Actions


Hello everyone. With today's post I am going to show you how seamless and efficient it can be to use Photoshop Actions when editing a large amount of photos at once.

1. Open your image & unlock your layer.
You can unlock your image's layer by double clicking it and selecting "Ok" in the dialog box that appears. 




2. Open your Actions Panel.
Your Actions Panel is located at Windows > Actions.



3.  Create a new Action.
At the bottom right corner of your Actions Panel, you will see a small square icon. Select it to create a New Action.


4.  Name and record your Action.
Once you create your new Action, a dialog box will appear asking you to name and begin recording your Action. For this tutorial, I will name my new Action "Test".



5. Begin editing your image.
This is where you have complete creative freedom. Add your adjustment layers that you normally would to your image. It can be as many as you like. For this example, I kept it simple and only added 3 adjustments. (Brightness, Color Balance and Saturation)






6. Stop Recording.
Once you have your image the way you want it to look and you are satisfied, you can now Stop Recording.  Go back to your Actions Panel and hit the Square icon to the LEFT of the red circle to stop recording.





7. Save your file.


Here is your final result. Let's say hypothetically that you would like all of your images you took that day to have this same Black & White edit you just made, but you don't have the time to spend hours on each one. This is where actions can become beneficial. 






Step 2: Adding your action to another photograph in 60 seconds.

Let's say you want to add your action to this photograph of Central Park.

1. Open and Unlock your image's layer.
 You can unlock your image's layer by double clicking it and selecting "Ok" in the dialog box that appears. 


2. Open your Actions Panel.
Your Actions Panel is located at Windows > Actions.


3.  Select your action you created.
You should see the Action you just created.



4. Press play.
The play button is located at the bottom of the Actions Panel.



5. End Result.
Now your image will have the same edits as your previous image including all of the adjustment layers.





** In conclusion to this tutorial, I do want to say that each image is different. Using Actions can save you a lot of time and give you a cohesive "look" throughout your collection of photographs, but I still suggest to analyze each image's shadows, lighting, saturation, levels, curves, etc after applying an action.  For instance, the lighting and saturation of one photograph may need to be adjusted more than the previous one, and vice versa. Use Actions in your own unique way. **








Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Frozen Fountain At Bryant Park


Foto Care Rental's Brian Heinbuecher took these great shots of the Bryant Park fountain while it was frozen solid! He used a #nikon D3X with a 24-120mm lens. Even when it's cold, we're still shooting!






Monday, February 2, 2015

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Shooting with the Fujifilm X-Pro1

Typical winter day here at Foto Care. With the wind chill at a surprising low, I decided to grab a camera I haven't used yet and take some test shots. I wanted something light weight, easy to use, but still strong enough to process good quality RAW photographs. I ended up grabbing a Fujifilm X-Pro1 with a 35mm lens from our Rental Department. Mainly, because I've never used it and these smaller/powerful cameras seem to be buzzing these days.

Normally, I shoot with a Canon 5D Mark III, so you can imagine the weight difference around my neck. The user face was easy to use, all of my functions (shutter speed, ISO, aperture) were just a knob-twist away. It's odd, but I almost like the knobs opposed to the rotating wheel when adjusting my shutter speed. I noticed I wasn't constantly looking at my LCD checking settings like I usually am with my Canon 5D Mark III. It was nice.

2 words to describe this camera? Small and powerful! 

I've heard many times about these new handheld cameras and how strong they can be, but Fujifilm's X-Trans CMOS sensor blew me away. Here are some shots I took yesterday with the Fujifilm X-Pro1.

Fujifilm X-Pro1 available Foto Care








Thursday, January 15, 2015

We have the new Ice Light, and we love it!


Manny (and Ron in the back) are both checking out our new Ice Light we have. Perfect for product photography & of course fighting off bad guys, too


Monday, January 12, 2015

5 Quick Tips When Shooting In The Cold

I think it is safe to say that New York is officially getting cold! The snow and the slush is accumulating on our streets, in our trees and making it very difficult for photographers to shoot outside. On the contrary, the snow makes for a beautiful photo. But there are just a few red flags that come to my mind before stepping outside in this cold weather.

1. Invest In A Battery Grip
The colder your battery, the less of a charge it will hold.  Think of it kind of like a car. When it’s cold outside sometimes your car won’t crank, right? That’s exactly how your camera’s battery (or any battery) reacts to cold conditions. Trust me, invest in a back up battery.

2. Shoot At Dusk Or Around Sunset
Shooting at these times allows for the white of the snow to really contrast with it’s surroundings. By shooting at these appropriate lighting times you are also avoiding harsh highlights that the sun reflects off of the snow and the entire image will be really smooth in light balance. This will be a breath of fresh air when editing.

Photo by Brandon Remler

3. Put Your Camera In A Freezer Bag
I know that sounds crazy, but you have to let you camera adjust to different climates at a slow rate.  Transporting your camera from a warm place (studio, bus, train) into a cold environment can and will cause condensation to your camera internally.  Kind of like when your glasses fog up when you walk into a warm place after being outside. After you are done shooting outside, put your camera in a large Ziploc freezer bag. When you get home, place the camera by the window and allow the camera to naturally warm back up. You do NOT want moisture building up in your camera.



4. Thin Cotton Gloves
This is the first thing I think of when shooting outside in the cold. I think of how annoying it will be to take my gloves on and off to adjust settings, then my fingers will start to freeze and I will just want to quit shooting. It happens all the time. The simple solution to my problem: Thin Cotton Gloves. Seems like a no brainer, right?  Great investment for shooting in the cold.  You can now shoot and adjust while keeping your hands warm at the same time.

BONUS TIP
** Although we all want to shoot with a large DSLR camera, I find it so much easier to shoot in tough environments with a small mirror-less camera like the Fujifilm XT1. It gives you the power you need internally without the hassle of lugging around a large camera. **




5. Reverse Vignette
If you’ve ever used a vignette before you know that it’s purpose is to apply a darker ring around your image to direct your eyes to staying in the center of the photograph.  It basically keeps your eyes from wondering around off the image.  When shooting in the snow, try reversing the vignette by applying a white ring around your images opposed to a darker one. I find that it blends everything together and can give your photo a "snowy" natural look (when done properly, of course).