Posts Published in December 2011

10 Most Popular PetaPixel Posts of 2011

As 2011 comes to an end, here’s a look back at 10 of our most popular articles from the past year:

  1. Portraits of Dogs as They Shake Off Water
  2. Men Photographed in Stereotypical Pin-Up Poses
  3. How to Transfer a Photograph Onto a Block of Wood
  4. Large Objects Shot as Miniatures Using a Giant Coin and Tilt-Shift Effects
  5. Eagle Owl Attacking Camera at 1000fps
  6. First Ever Photograph of a Human Being
  7. Flamethrower Versus Fire Extinguisher at 1000 Frames per Second
  8. Monkey Hijacks Photographer’s Camera and Shoots Self-Portraits
  9. Stop-Motion Music Video Shot Over Two Years with 288,000 Jelly Beans
  10. Trippy Multidirectional Face Illusions

Image credit: Fireworks by Verpletterend

A Peek at the Guts of the Sony A77

Curious as to what Sony’s A77 pellicle mirror looks like on the inside? Here’s an interesting look at the camera broken down into its main components.

(via 1001 Noisy Cameras)

Portrait Tip: Bring Your Subject’s Smaller Eye Closer to the Camera

Here’s a quick and simple tip for better portraits by Reddit user rmx_:

Everyone has a lazy eye. By that, I mean one eye is always smaller and/or more closed than the other eye. In some people, it is very easy to spot; in others, nearly impossible. The “beautiful people” have more symmetrical faces, but still, one eye will open more than the other. (Denzel Washington has one of the most I have seen [...])

[...] here is the tip: get the smaller/lazier eye slightly closer to the camera. Oh, and don’t tell the person what you’re looking at their eyes for! You’ll make them self conscious. Simply ask them to look at your finger and move their head to follow it, and then guide them left or right as necessary. Chances are, the movement needed will not be so much that you have to adjust your lights.

You can read more about how facial symmetry relates to beauty in this Wikipedia article.

(via Reddit)


Image credit: Man portrait by Yuri Samoilov

Brothers Add Director’s Commentaries to Old Home Videos

Filmmaking brothers John and Richard Ramsey came up with the brilliant and hilarious idea of unearthing some old home videos and adding directors commentary over them. It’s a great way to have a laugh with family members, and could make a fun present.
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Messiness at 1/6 Scale: Barbie Trashes Her Dreamhouse

Barbie Trashes Her Dreamhouse is a photo series by photo instructor Carrie M. Becker that shows what Barbie’s dollhouse would look like if she was a compulsive hoarder and complete slob. The scenes ares 1/6th scale models, the objects are either repurposed Barbie toys or made by hand. Becker used a Nikon D40 with the on-camera flash.
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Fine Art Photos Printed Onto Vintage Dictionary Pages

Etsy seller missquitecontrary sells her fine art photographs printed onto vintage dictionary pages. You can try your hand at doing this yourself — just be sure to use archival inks and find an old dictionary or encyclopedia with thick pages.

missquitecontrary’s Etsy Store [Etsy]

Use a Marble to Find Good Available Light

Steve 21 has an interesting trick for finding good available light: he places a marble in his hand to simulate what the light would look like on a human face:

Just hold a fist in front of you (like holding a telescope), tuck the marble just under your forefinger, and there you have it – the same lighting an eye would get.

And since you know you want the catchlights to be up at 1 to 2 o’clock, or up high at 12 o’clock, simply turn about until you see the catchlights you want.

The neat thing is that the curves and wrinkles of your hand show you the amount of contrast and backlight.

Black marbles: the latest must-have item in any beginning photographer’s camera bag.

A Trick to Finding Good Available Light [photo.net]


Image credits: Photographs by Steve 21

Turn a Roll of Film Into a Greeting “Card”

Accidentally expose an entire roll of film to light? Instead of throwing it away, you can turn it into a geeky greeting card! Lomographer brilliantgreen made a Christmas-themed one using small illustrations and letters cut out of a magazine, but you could do it for any occasion.

Film Roll Christmas Letters [Lomography]

The Biggest Fight of War Photographer Joao Silva’s Life

Here’s an inspiring video in which we hear war photographer Joao Silva discuss the biggest fight of his life: losing his legs to a land mine in Afghanistian and fighting to return to his career. We’ve reported on Silva’s story a number of times before.

(via ISO 1200)

Shocking: North Korea Doctored Photo of Kim Jong-il’s Funeral

News photo agencies EPA, AFP, and Reuters have all issued kill orders for a photo of Kim Jong-il’s funeral procession released by the Korean Central News Agency, the state news agency of North Korea. The photo (above at bottom) raised red flags after a comparison with a Kyodo News photo taken just seconds earlier revealed that a number of people had vanished from the scene. The New York Times writes,

A side-by-side comparison of the full images does point to a possibly banal explanation: totalitarian aesthetics. With the men straggling around the sidelines, a certain martial perfection is lost. Without the men, the tight black bands of the crowd on either side look railroad straight.

Perhaps it was a simple matter of one person gilding the lily.

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