rules

‘Winning’ Photography (At Any Cost)

I’ve never entered a photo contest. In part because I have a fear of not winning and confronting my own mediocrity. But mostly because I have never viewed photography as sport.

World Press Photo to Debut New Photo Contest With No Rules

The prestigious World Press Photo contest has been tarnished in recent years by findings of inappropriate staging and digital manipulation of photos. So, the organizers have come up with a solution: there will soon be a new separate contest that does away with all the rules.

Ignoring the Rule of Thirds: When and Why ‘Bad’ Composition Works

For many advanced photographers, the rule of thirds is seen as something of a beginner's trope or amateur construct, but learning how, why, and when to break it can be a challenge. This short episode of Brain Flick helps deconstruct that question and explain why and when "bad" compositions work.

The FAA Has Released Its Official Rules for Commercial Drone Use

The FAA's long-awaited regulations for commercial drone use have finally arrived. Finalized and posted yesterday, the "Part 107 Rule" explains how old you have to be, what kind of certification you need, and how you're allowed to fly your drone if you're using it for commercial purposes.

US Working on Rules for Flying Drones Over Populated Areas

The FAA has been scrambling to come up with appropriate rules for multi-rotor camera drones since the flying machines took the world by storm a few years back. And while the first set of proposed rules were revealed a little over a year ago, it seems a US Government committee is already working on a very important update.

Photographer Joey L.’s Photos of Kurdish PKK Fighters Deleted by Instagram

Back in June, we shared a series of photos by Joey L., who made a dangerous trip to Kurdistan to point his camera at the Kurdish guerrilla groups fighting in the Syrian civil war.

It turns out that many of the photos violate Instagram's policies, not because they show violence or graphic scenes, but because they show members of PKK, a group that's listed on "terrorist" lists. Joey L. isn't pleased with the policy.

Man Wins Lawsuit Against Neighbor Who Shot Down Drone with Shotgun

There have been multiple stories of drones getting shot out of the sky with shotguns in the past couple of years. Last November, we reported that a New Jersey man was arrested after shooting down a camera drone that was taking pictures over his property.

Now another drone pilot, Eric Joe, has just won a lawsuit against a disgruntled neighbor who blasted Joe's hexacopter out of the sky with a shotgun.

FAA Unveils Its Rules for Commercial Drone Usage

The FAA has confirmed a leak that emerged this past weekend by officially unveiling its proposed set of rules governing commercial drone flights. The guidelines are more lax than many people feared, and they represent a huge step toward the legalization of commercial drone flights -- including for aerial photography purposes.

Video: A CGI Artist’s Comprehensive Guide to Understanding Composition

The basic rules of composition apply to almost every visual art there is, be it photography, painting or graphic design. Whether it’s the rule of thirds or the rule of triangles, the principles overlap, leaving the educational resources for each respective art form useful across the board, not tied down to one specific field.

Cameras Don’t Break Rules, People Break Rules

A portrait session that results in the death of the subject should be called a failure.

As reported by the Salt Lake Tribune, a group of photographers and onlookers experienced precisely that level of catastrophic botchery last week in Grand Teton National Park when crowding too close to a moose (not a good idea).

The moose, already agitated by the presence of a nearby bull moose, was scared by the approaching park-visitors and bolted before stumbling over a picnic table and landing on a fire grate. With its hoof caught in the grate, the half-ton animal collapsed and broke its leg so badly that park rangers were forced to put it down.

US Forest Service Proposes Controversial and Expensive Photo Permit Rules

The US Forest Service is under fire today after proposing a set of rules that would put strict restrictions on photographers and filmmakers who want to ply their trade in wilderness areas. The rules subject potential projects to an approval process with permits costing as much as $1,500 while fines for breaking the rules would run around $1,000.

A Concise Video Refresher of the Basic Rules of Composition

Composition and the rules that accompany it are some of the most basic aspects you learn when first picking up a camera. If you've been a photographer long, it's probably safe to say that the "rule of thirds" and "golden mean" are ingrained into your brain so well that it's second-nature now.

That being said, every once in a while it's nice to take a fresh look at the rules and the underlying concepts behind them -- if for no other reason than because you have to know the rules in order to break them properly.

Award-Winning Washington Post Photo DQed for Excessive Photoshopping

There have been several controversies surrounding award-winning photography of late. First there was photographer Harry Fisch, who had his Nat Geo Photo Contest award stripped for cloning out a bag. Then Magnum photographer Paolo Pellegrin's ethics were called into question when he was accused of misrepresenting the subject of his award-winning photo.

And now another controversy has come to our attention, this one revolving around the photo above, taken by Washington Post staff photographer Tracy Woodward. The above photo was the version that was submitted to and won the White House News Photographers Association's (WHNPA) 'Eyes of History' stills photo contest, but not before it was significantly manipulated in Photoshop.

Why Photogs in Certain States Can’t Enter Nat Geo’s Photo Contest

Yesterday we reported that Nikon Photo Contest is no longer accepting film photos starting this year. Turns out it's not the only prestigious photo contest with rules that are causing some discussion. Check out what National Geographic Photo Contest 2012 says under the rules section "Who May Enter":

Contest is open only to individuals who have reached the age of majority in their jurisdiction of residence at the time of entry and who do NOT reside in Cuba, Iran, New Jersey, North Korea, the Province of Quebec, Sudan, Syria or Vermont. Employees of National Geographic Society, and its subsidiaries and affiliates [...] CONTEST IS VOID IN CUBA, IRAN, NEW JERSEY, NORTH KOREA, THE PROVINCE OF QUEBEC, SUDAN, SYRIA, VERMONT AND WHERE PROHIBITED.

Iran and North Korea? Those are understandable... but New Jersey and Vermont? Turns out there's a pretty simple answer for those states as well: state laws.

Photog Denied Park Permit Because His Mirrorless Camera Lacks a Mirror

There was once a time when you could more easily spot a professional photographer simply by glancing at the camera equipment in a person's hands. Was it a beast of a camera with a gigantic lens attached to it? You're looking at a serious shooter. Is it a dinky pea shooter that is used with arms outstretched? The person is a tourist, newbie, or both.

Scotland’s Largest City Set To Ban All Photography in Its Subways

Earlier today Amateur Photographer reported that the Strathclyde Partnership for Transport (SPT) in Glasgow, Scotland is set to impose a series of bylaws for the cities transport, including a ban in section 12.1 which would prohibit riders from "take[ing] photographs, or make[ing] video, audio or visual recordings on any part of the subway." In fact, the only way around the ban would be to get express written permission from the SPT and show it to any officer that may request to see it.

Camera+ Shuttered from App Store for Hidden Banned Feature

It looks like tap tap tap's Camera+ added one too many features for Apple's liking. When the app developers tweeted a secret workaround that enabled the volume button to double up to control the shutter, Apple pulled Camera+ from the App Store.
Just this week, developer John Casasanta wrote in a blog post that an upgraded version of the app originally intended to launch the feature, VolumeSnap. VolumeSnap would have also allowed users to use the volume control on iPhone headphones as a remote shutter control. Pretty nifty.

But Apple rejected tap tap tap's new version, citing this as a reason:
Your application cannot be added to the App Store because it uses iPhone volume buttons in a non-standard way, potentially resulting in user confusion. Changing the behavior of iPhone external hardware buttons is a violation of the iPhone Developer Program License Agreement. Applications must adhere to the iPhone Human Interface Guidelines as outlined in the iPhone Developer Program License Agreement section 3.3.7
So tap tap tap left out the feature -- at first. The app retained the feature, which was now hidden, but could be enabled by pointing the phone's browser to a specific site provided by the developers.

Photographer Cries Wolf? Contest-Winning Shot Allegedly Staged

Spanish photographer José Luis Rodriguez recently received the prestigious winning title as the Veolia Environment Wildlife photographer of the year, along with £10,000 (about $20,000 $16,000) in prize money for his image, Storybook Wolf.  The photograph depicts a rare, Iberian wolf hopping a fence to enter a corral where the photographer had placed meat to attract the animal.