Earlier today my friend and fellow photographer posted a link to a craigslist ad from a woman in Seattle looking for a wedding photographer. The woman was upset because she thought that $3,000 for a wedding photographer was “wack” because all we do “is hang out at a wedding taking tons of photos and editing them” and that we are “making so much money its crazy.”
I first read this post earlier today while I was running errands and my head almost exploded. I immediately started drafting a horribly mean and punishing response in my head, but by the time I got home, I realized that this is probably a common misconception and that maybe I should try to explain why photographers charge what we do for our work.
Ever wonder how photographs magically appear on Polaroid pictures? Photojojo offers a simple explanation of how the process works:
[...] your instant camera ejects the picture in between two metal rollers. The rollers pinch the chemical packets on the bottom of your film, break them open, and spread the developer chemicals all over the surface of your image. [#]
They also have some other interesting “photo science” explanations here. For a more in-depth look, check out this HowStuffWorks article on instant cameras.
Reddit user MacTuitui created this simple diagram (click to enlarge) explaining the idea behind HDR photography. The first low dynamic range (LDR) taken normally with a camera isn’t able to capture much of the detail found in the highlight and shadow areas of the scene. Two (or more) photographs are then taken at different exposure values to capture a wider range (the bracketing step) and subsequently combined into a single image with a high dynamic range (HDR). Since most displays aren’t capable of displaying this full range, the image needs to be tone mapped to have its appearance approximated on LDR screens.
Put your detective hats on — there’s a photo mystery going on over at Boing Boing. Luke Mandle sent in the above photograph of his little boy, Boing Boing published it asking readers to explain it, and how there’s a fine and informative debate in the comments.