Guides

The Best Tips & Tools for Freelance Photographers

[Today’s guide comes from awesome photographer and Photojojo pal, Helena Price!]

Being a photographer is regarded as one of the coolest jobs on the planet.

That said, there’s a lot that goes into running a successful photography biz. Making good photos is just the beginning.

This year, I made the jump from my office job to becoming a full-time freelance photo-taker, and I’ve been lucky enough to do some really fun photo work for brands that I love (including Photojojo!).

These jobs don’t just fall into your lap. There’s an endless amount of helpful tools and resources out there for freelance photographers – you’ve just gotta go out there and find them.

After spending hours digging through the interwebs, asking freelance friends and compiling everything I’ve learned, I’ve put together this great beginners’ list of things to read/use/do if you’re making the jump into freelance photography.

Great Tips & Tools for Freelance Photogs

p.s. WE ARE HIRING AN EVANGELIST/BIZ DEV HERO. Creative deal-maker types, APPLY HERE.

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Three Tricks for Faking Depth of Field in Your Photos


Extra photos for bloggers: 1, 2, 3

There was a time when you’d want to stare at a photo for hours but couldn’t quite put your finger on why.

Then you taught yourself a little bit about photography and realized it was a photo’s dreamy depth of field that reeled you in — razor sharp details with a background that slowly fades to a wonderfully creamy blur.

To get really fantastic depth of field, photographers invest in pricey lenses. The good news is there are ways to create the illusion of depth of field without forking over the moola.

We’ll show you three totally accessible tools that’ll help you get a similar effect and will be fun to experiment with, too!

How to Fake Depth of Field

p.s. WE ARE HIRING A WEB DEVELOPER. If you love photography and San Francisco and codes, APPLY HERE.

p.p.s. WE ARE ALSO HIRING AN EVANGELIST/BIZ DEV HERO. Creative deal-maker types, APPLY HERE. READ MORE

A Twist on the 365 Project: One Second a Day Video Project


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Doesn’t it feel like 2012 was just a couple weeks ago?

Maybe your New Year’s resolution was to start a 365 Project where you snap a photo every day.

Well, what if we told you that you can make a time-lapse of your life by taking a one second clip every day? That’s what Photojojo pal, James Bernal did for all 366 days of 2012.

Think about how awesome yours would look — it’d be a 6-and-a-half minute mosaic of your year!

James put together an awesome guide detailing how to shoot, what to shoot, and how to keep going when you’re ready to set the camera down.

A Guide to Shooting One Second a Day

p.s. Win a traveling photo booth! We’re giving away an Instax camera & more with Brit+Co. Enter to win right here.

p.p.s. Even moar giveaways! Our pals at SnapKnot (the wedding photographer directory) are giving away a Nikon D800 or Canon 5D Mark III. Here’s how to enter.
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Film Grains Meet Digital Pixels: A Complete Guide to Scanning Film


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iPhones, and internets, and ion implanters! Oh my!

In this tech-savvy world we can return to 100%-analog-photog-goodness and transform them to digital with some simple scanner-wizardry.

This handy guide will show you how to scan your film, merging all of the sweetest parts of analog with the ease and shareability of digital.

The best part? You don’t have to know a thing about rocket science to follow along.

Learn How to Scan Film!

p.s. Our buddies at Printstagram make some of the bestest Instagram prints we’ve seen! You can make it happen right from your phone.

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Turn Your Tablet Into a Studio Light


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Your iPad is your Sunday Times. Your game console. Your encyclopedia. The guardian of your deepest, darkest secrets. (Better put a password on that!)

And now, it’s your new studio light!

It’s true. Your tablet is powerful enough to illuminate your subject in almost any photo situation.

This guide will show you how a tablet can super charge your shots with creative backdrops, custom light shapes, and pop art colors.

Just when you thought your tablet reached peak awesomeness, it suddenly got so much awesomer.

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The Ultimate Guide to Vine: Pro-Tips, Awesome Ideas, and Who to Follow!


It’s easy to forget about the video function built into your camera phone.

It’s just that videos end being too big to send to friends, and who wants to wait for a video to download anyway?

Man, are we spoiled. Back in our parents’ day, they had to carry 20lb VHS recorders just to shoot a few minutes of film! Us? We have a video recorder that fits in our pocket.

Vine fixes all of this and then some.

It’s an app that lets you share snippets of video –six seconds to be exact– in a super-digestible format. As you scroll through a stream of friends’ videos, the video on your screen instantly plays.

This isn’t just another Instagram. It’s a whole new platform for showing off your creativity. There’s so much you can do in six seconds!

Plus, you get to share life-experiences with friends as they happen. And that right there is pretty much the coolest thing your phone has to offer.

So get it, and then read on for all the best tips, ideas, and inspiration on Vine.

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DIY: Steel Wool Lightpainting for Under $10


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Johnny Cash famously once sung, “Love is a burning thing.”

Whether you’re in a committed relationship, a fledgling romance or recently unattached this Valentine’s Day, one thing is certain: love is like a flame.

To honor the fires of love, Mike Benson of Wed Over Heels is showing us how to light paint with steel wool to visually ignite the frame!

This stunning effect costs less than $10 in supplies and requires no Photoshop or post-processing.

With the right precautions, you and few friends can certainly pull it off and keep your eyebrows. (Be sure to read the Safety Notice in the tutorial!)

How to Lightpaint with Steel Wool

p.s. Heads up! creativeLIVE has a free live online course to brush up on your digital photog skillz. Everything from the nitty-gritty to pro tips!
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Create In-Camera White Balance Experiments


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Did you know that white balance is the quickest way to turn your camera into an InstaLomoCrosstography machine?

This tutorial is a fun, simple way to play with color a la Instagram or Lomography without any apps or chemicals!

All you need to do is take the correct white balance and set it to the “wrong” white balance to get sweet shifts in tones and colors.

We put together a guide on exactly what kind of color shifts you’ll get with each setting. No Android-based technology here. You can do it all with the settings your camera already has!

Create Sweet White Balance Experiments

p.s. We’re giving away an iPhone Lens Dial (our primo iPhoneography gizmo) today! Here’s how to enter. READ MORE

Make a DIY Zoetrope with Your Phone


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Back when Zeppelins were zipping around and petticoats were all the rage, the zoetrope was the closest you could get to catching a movie.

If you suppose this little gizmo went out with the steam engine, think again.

Our DIY tutorial gives the zoetrope a 21st century makeover by using the panorama function of a phone.

Yes, with just a few shutter clicks and scissor snips you can create your very own stop motion movie machine.

Sound fun? Well full speed ahead on the zoetrope express!

Make a Zoetrope with Your Phone! READ MORE

7 Photo Projects to Start on January 1st

Photo credit: Melina Souza

As soon as the ball drops and you’re done kissing your sweetheart, you are probably already wondering: What in the world am I gonna do in 2013?

How about starting one of these seven photo projects with the New Year? Project 365 is a classic choice, but you might want to peruse these twists on that classic long term photo project as well.

Find something just right for you this year, no matter what sort of commitment you’re looking for. Take a peek at these ideas and select the perfect one to help your creative juices flow like champagne on New Year’s Eve.

7 Project Ideas to Start off the New Year

p.s. We’re re-posting our most favorited Tweets of the year! Follow us on Twitter to see what our best photography projects, stories, and tips of 2012 were. READ MORE