If you happen to live in the United States, all you’ve heard about lately is the elections. (Chances are you’ve heard a lot about it even if you don’t live here.)
But when you get right down to it, the actual act of voting is so mundane, so taken-for granted, that more than a third of Americans didn’t even bother in 2004.
That’s why we like the New York Times’ Polling Place Photo Project. It elevates the ordinary, bland places where history is made.
Photographing your polling place is a great challenge: it makes you rethink the importance of what goes on there.
We challenge you to cast that church basement or high-school auditorium in heroic light, to raise the sleepy, coffee-deprived people lining up before work onto their proper civic pedestal.
And why stop there? Why not get out and document the process leading up to the election? Photograph the rallies, the clever posters, your friends arguing politics. If there was ever a year for political photography, this is it.
If you’re not in the United States, we’re dying to see how politics work in your country. What do the campaign posters look like? Do you have voter registration cards? Where do you vote? Post your pictures on the Photojojo Forum and tell us all about it!
p.s. New to the neighborhood? Don’t know where your polling place is? Google can tell you where to go.
p.p.p.s. Some cities/counties/states allow photography in the polling place and some don’t. If yours doesn’t, please respect the rules, and be nice to your polling officer!
Published on October 23, 2008 — See more Photo Projects
We love Halloween.
The costumes, the candy, the parties: we love it all. What other holiday is completely devoted to making you feel like you never have to grow up?
And what better way to celebrate your arrested development than plunging your hand into a pumpkin, scooping out its guts, and carving scary faces on it?
We’ll tell you what better way: carving your own scary photos onto that pumpkin instead of the usual triangle eyes and pointy teeth. All you need is a scary picture and a little know-how. Read on for the full details on how to make your own photo pumpkins.
p.s. New contest! Submit your macro and zoom photos for a chance to win free rental lenses! Enter here by Sunday, October 26!
Published on October 21, 2008 — See more DIY
It’s purple. It’s solar-powered. And we’ve got one right here at the Photojojo Workatorium.
What could it be? Why, it’s a super-duper GPS camera bike with special Flickr sauce!
It has a built-in camera mounted on the handlebars that takes pictures as you ride, then automatically geotags and uploads them to its very own Flickr stream.
The only downside to this brilliant bike is that only 20 of them were made, and most of them are already in the clutches of the digerati.
So, how can you get your mitts on one? Choose one of the following:
If you answered B or C, we like you. If you answered A, we raise a suspicious eyebrow at you and move the bike to extra-extra-secret coordinates.
Published on October 16, 2008 — See more DIY
Back in the day (i.e. 7th grade), we “borrowed” our dad’s camera gear. Eventually, when we could afford a camera of our own (i.e. age 27), we finally gave it back.
Now we’re thinking of “borrowing” Dad’s lenses again, because using vintage lenses on our DSLR is a lot easier than we thought.
All you need is a cheap adapter ring that allows you to attach a particular lens to your camera. And manual-focus vintage lenses are all over eBay, dirt-cheap and ripe for the plucking.
Yes, you have to use manual focus, but you won’t miss autofocus as much as you think. Especially when you consider that vintage lenses are better-made, more reliable, and exponentially cheaper than comparable autofocus lenses.
So dust off your dad’s gear. Fling wide the closet doors, and hike up to the attic! Shake down your relatives for all the old lenses they have stashed away. It’s time to become the gear-geek you always wanted to be.
p.s. Thanks Dad!
Published on October 13, 2008 — See more Photojojo Original
We’ve been hearing a lot about the R-Strap lately, but we thought, “Really? It’s just a camera strap. What’s the big deal?”
Turns out it’s a really smart design. The strap hangs diagonally across your chest like a messenger bag, so:
The smart bit is the little slider attachment that allows you to glide the camera up the strap to your eye so you can take a picture. The camera moves, but the strap doesn’t. See it in action here.
It’s really clever, and we’re kind of kicking ourselves for not thinking of it first.
Added bonus! For all of our thrifty brethren out there, we’re including a couple of ways to make one yourself. Either way, your neck will thank you.
p.s. For every pink-themed photo added to the Pink 2008 Flickr group this month, Yahoo! will donate 1 euro to breast cancer charities. Add your picture and make a difference!
Photo credit: iBallz
The photographer’s worst nightmare: being hauled out from behind the lens and forced to stand in front of a camera.
Why must people photograph us? Yes, photographers are adorable, and yes, we have unparalleled style. But we are shy, and we prefer to hide behind our cameras like frightened woodland creatures behind large trees.
Still, people do insist on taking our pictures. So, what to do when you can’t avoid being photographed? Stand tall and follow our tips for instant photogenicity.
Published on October 7, 2008 — See more Guides
Looking at photomicrography is like walking into a whole new dimension.
It knocks us out that there’s this whole invisible world present, yet utterly ignored, in every aspect of our lives. Plus there’s a whole branch of photography we never even thought of.
The bad news is: 1) most of us don’t have the specialized equipment to really get into photomicrography, and 2) it’s hard to pronounce.
The good news: we can learn to photograph very small things that are visible to the naked eye.
Macro photography is supposed to be for Serious Photographers, but anyone with a decent point-and-shoot can master it.
Come on along and we’ll let you in on the settings, lighting info, and technical gear you need to know about to get started.
Published on October 2, 2008 — See more Guides
they’ve got some cool new lenses we just saw at Photokina.
Find out why Photojojo advertisers keep coming back.
How in the name of the Jolly Green Giant did Meg Wachter get anybody to pose for these portraits?
Was it bribery? Hypnosis? Did she promise them a guest spot on “You Can’t Do That On Television”?
Probably all of the above.
Tell ya what we’d do if we wanted to get pictures like these, though:
We’d host a big end-of-summer BBQ/pool party, with lots of soupy side-dishes, and we’d wait ’til everybody all had their bathing suits on, and then we’d break out the camera for the hugest, sloppiest, food-fight photo extravaganza there ever was! Yeah!
We’re not saying you have to spend this coming weekend that way, it’s just, you know, it is the end of summer. And they would be really awesome pictures. We’re just saying.
p.s. Congratulations to the winners of our Lomography + Photojojo Photo Tip Contest! First prize goes to lauramary, followed closely by shanegoguen, tom_ashor_bhaan, halfawakehaiku, and ginnymae.
Published on September 29, 2008 — See more Inspiration
Flickr, Facebook, your blog… so many wonderful places to share your pictures.
And yet, such a giant pain in the butt to tag and organize and upload photos separately to every single site. Sometimes it’s almost not worth the effort.
Until now! (Cue burst of golden light and singing choir!)
Pixelpipe’s a new service that uploads all your pictures to all your favorite sites at once. Here’s how it works:
Easy, right? Also, did we mention that it’s free? And there are free software add-ons that let you upload straight from Picasa, and your mobile phone, and stuff like that.
So there you go: more sharing your photos, less pain in the keister.
Published on September 25, 2008 — See more Websites
On July 2, 1982, “Lawnchair Larry” Walters strapped himself into a lawnchair tied to 45 helium-filled weather balloons, and floated away into the sky.
14 hours later, after disrupting flight paths at LAX and blacking out a Long Beach neighborhood by floating into some power lines, he shot the balloons with a pellet gun and returned unharmed to terra firma.
Don’t do what Larry did.
If you really want to see the view from on high, do what David Trawin did instead: hang a camera from a bunch of balloons and send it aloft to take pictures for you.
Read on for full instructions on how to make an aerial balloon camera rig, in Part Three of our continuing quest to get our cameras higher and higher into the air.*
*What will be next? Dirigibles? Trained eagles? Sending candygrams to the Air Force until they let us borrow a fighter jet?
Published on September 22, 2008 — See more DIY
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