New long awaited album featurePosted 22 days ago
Turn your 1x profile into a portfolio of all your best photos with our brand new album feature! Organize your photos, published and unpublished alike, into different albums in your new "Album" tab. Sort them by different themes, series, places, models, genres of photography or however you like! It's incredible easy to make an album and add photos to it, just click "Create album" and then click on all photos you want to include in the album in a list of all your photos.
You can add a single photo to multiple albums and you can easily arrange the order of the images in each album. You can also arrange the order of the albums in your profile and select an album cover. In "Acconut settings" you can make your Albums the default landing page of your profile. We intend for your 1x profile to be a porfoltio of all photos you think are your best and most important and with this new album feature it's easier and more fun than ever before! Check an excellent example on Piet Flour's profile here.
This feature is availble for Plus and Pro members, upgrade your account here.
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Photographer of the week: Bill GekasPosted 24 days ago
We are very happy to award Bill Gekas photographer of the week! Bill is an outstanding portrait and children's photographer always coming up with new creative ideas and settings. Many thanks to Yvette Depaepe for doing this interview. As always, you will find more photos by Bill at the end of the interview.
Briefly tell us about yourself, your hobbies and other jobs.
I was born and raised in Melbourne Australia. Melbourne is the place where I currently reside. Although my main interest is the craft of photography and visual arts in general, photography is not my full time profession. I successfully own and operate a manufacturing business in the construction sector. As I'm involved in a profession which is completely unrelated to my main interest I need an insanity to stay sane, it just so happens that photography is my insanity.
How has your history and life experiences affected your photography? Which are your most important experiences that has influenced your art?
As much as I know, what I want to achieve on a piece by piece basis, I don't believe I have found my photographic vision yet. Subconsciously I hope I never to find it. The photographic journey I've decided to take has made me discover as much about other people as about myself, both the good and the bad and I believe the discovery occurs on the journey. I think finding your vision is akin to arriving at the destination. Personally I don't think I want to arrive just yet!
What first attracted you to photography?
I've always been interested in the visual arts but could never draw or paint so photography was going to be the medium I was going to use. My first encounter with photography was when I was 6 years old. We were living in London for a few years and my father bought a Pentax ME-Super slr film camera. The whole photography process just slowly grew on me from there and it wasn't until many years later in my 20's that I started taking it a lot more seriously as an artistic pursuit.
Describe your overall photographic vision.
Although most of my portfolio and awarded work is of my young daughter, it's not just about children photography for me. My chosen genre is portraiture in general, portraiture with a fine art surreal aesthetic.
Why are you so drawn to children photography?
One thing when photographing children in these conceptual scenes is that people can relate to children in art as they see the connection to their own children or even themselves. The child in conceptual type works is sort of considered a metaphor, a universal child.
What is more important to you, the story behind an image or the technical perfection?
In my opinion the story in an image always trumps the technicals. You can have a technically perfect image but if the story, emotion or atmosphere doesn't exist then it's just a showcase of the photographers technical understanding of the craft. The technicals of photography can always be mastered and for some people a lot quicker than for others but mastering the art of photography is a lifelong journey. However combining both the art and technical perfection in your work surely gets people looking twice, and given the flood of visuals that cross us in this day and age that has to be a good thing.
What generally is your relationship to your subject matter beyond being an observer?
I find the connection between photographer and subject usually reflects back to the end viewer. If the photographer is merely an observer the end viewer is also an observer. Although some photographers intentionally create work that is also a type of reflection of themselves, it's something I try to avoid in my own work, unfortunately though this can be challenging as it can happen on a subconscious level.
Who are your favorite photographers and more importantly, how has your appreciation of their work affected how you approach your own photography?
Although there are many amazing photographers out there a few current photographers I have a lot of respect for their works are Dan Winters, Erwin Olaf, Eugenio Recuenco, Paolo Roversi. At the same time though I also believe that in the whole scheme of things photography is a fairly recent invention and it's very limiting to be only inspired by photographers. Photography being just another visual medium means inspiration should be sought from all visual mediums, be it paintings, drawings, sculptures etc. This ultimately opens up a much larger timeline to be inspired from. I have a lot of appreciation for the works by the old master painters such as Vermeer, Caravaggio, Velazquez, Rembrandt and the atmosphere in their works finds a way of influencing my own.
Are there any specific directions that you would like to take your photography in the future or any specific goals that you wish to achieve?
Any change in direction will just be an evolutionary step from the current style I'm working to, but it will always be portraiture with a fine art, surreal aesthetic. I believe the directional change will be from the painterly style I am known for to perhaps a more simplistic minimalistic approach, both technically and aesthetically. As much as I enjoy this painterly style, I still believe it is just a stepping stone to where it will end up. The beauty of this craft is that it is an open game and there is plenty of room for exploration.
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Story winners and honorable mentionsPosted 27 days ago
The winners of the popular weekly theme Story with almost 1000 entries, were Nadav Dov Boretzki, Vito Guarino and Fernando Alves with their touching photos. All three winning photos were black and white, which is very suitabe to emphasize a story.
If you think photo contests are fun, don't miss out on 1x Photo Awards. The grand prize winner may now as an option be selected for Eurographics' catalog. Eurographics is the biggest prints provider in Europe with stores in 62 countries and the top selling 1x photographer at Eurographics has already made more than 4000 euro selling just one single photo.
11st place, "Living Memories" by Nadav Dov Boretzki.
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Master guest photographer: Joel TjintjelaarPosted 1 month ago
As a famous photographer there are many different ways to make a living. Joel recently released together with Formatt-Hitech a signature edition IRND filter set carrying his name and signature. At the moment Joel teaches long exposure and architectural photography workshops around the world together with the Vision Explorers team that he co-founded 1 year ago with other international award winning photographers. Joel also teaches private and online workshops focused on architectural fine-art photography and his black and white workflow using his own iSGM method of B&W conversion. Joel’s iSGM B&W conversion workflow and long exposure techniques are explained in-depth in a video tutorial co-produced with German WebTV company FOTOTV.COM that has been released in May 2013.
Last but not least, Joel recently released a book called “From Basics to Fine Art – Black and White Photography - Architecture and Beyond” together with the architect, fine art photographer and 1x member Julia Anna Gospodarou, which can already be ordered and has received excellent reviews. You can find more information about Joel and his work on his website which also contains many tutorials on long exposure and black and white photography.
I have been following and admiring your work since 5 years now, Joel. Can you tell me what first drew you to photography?
I have this feeling that I can convey an idea or an emotion with it since I’m closely connected to it. I also have this more personal view on fine art photography on the other hand: I believe that fine art or any other art is the unique expression of an artist: an expression of his personal vision, whether this has any relationship with objective reality or not, is not important. It can be anything real or surreal. The uniqueness of this vision though, is an important element. How to achieve that? My personal approach is that the more you move away from objective reality, the closer you get to the essence of the artist and to his personal and unique view on the world he lives in. Simply because when you move away from an objective reality, that can be experienced by anyone, the thing that you’re left with at the end is something very unique, something that resides within the artist only. That’s why I try to move 3 or more steps away from reality to express my vision.
In any case, composition is paramount for all these subjects and depending the subject compositions can vary. But there are always a few recurring elements in my work: minimalism and light. If I shoot a cityscape then it’s hard to think that these can be minimalistic too, but they can, simply by the way you compose it and by the way you process it: I always intend to remove any visual noise, not by cloning out things but first and foremost to create a composition that removes all unwanted elements in-camera and secondly by ‘silencing’ the visual noise in post processing. I do that by darkening elements that can distract, and emphasizing those parts that I want the viewer to look at and I do that by using selective contrasts. I very rarely remove elements by using the clone tool. My approach to fine art photography, is that it is important to impose your own personal vision onto a photograph and never restrict yourself to the limitations of your camera or even to the limitations of reality. I’m not a documentary or news photographer, I do not need to restrict myself to objective reality, if such a thing exists.
I’ve developed my own method of B&W post processing that is based on 2 essential elements in a B&W photograph: light and shapes and the need to control both to control the result of your B&W photograph. I control shapes by creating very accurate selections of a specific main subject in my photograph. And I control light by creating luminosity masks and by using the gradient tool in my photographs. Combine those elements and you have complete control over the tonality and depth in your photograph. I’m not bound by the original colours in a photograph, these are things that I completely ignore. I’m only bound by the shapes and the light but by altering light in my photographs I can alter the perception of a shape and therefore subject in my photograph. I spend a lot of time altering tonal relationships in my photos by making white what once was black and vice versa or something in between.
I also spend a lot of time shaping the light in my photographs: I create shadows where there were no shadows before and I create light where there were only dark grey tones. If I do the latter I basically create depth and volumes in my photographs. Just like I would approach a pencil drawing: adding shadows and light or removing them on a blank sheet of paper. This is described extensively in our book From Basics to Fine art by my co-author Julia Anna Gospodarou. Creating all these accurate selections to control the shapes, the shaping of light by using luminosity masks and gradient tools to transfer my vision onto a photograph takes up a lot of time: often more than 40 hours per photograph. But this is not just editing time, a lot of the time I spend on just sitting with an image, staring at it and trying to evaluate it. Sometimes I would just leave it for a day or two, get back to it and see if it still appeals to me or that it would need some changes.
Well, I just tried to come up with something very personal and along the way developed the tools that I needed to express this personal vision. But I found out at some point that I was particularly attracted by Long exposure photography and minimalism. This is something you will see in all my work. At the same time they had to be B&W photographs, since that’s the visual language I find myself most attracted to and in which I can express myself effectively. I wanted to have a specific effect in my photographs that reflects my personal vision and I couldn’t find the tools that could create those effects.
Part of what I wanted to create is described in the previous question: I wanted to control shape and light. Something I couldn’t achieve with the tools available. Especially when you want to create smooth transitions between darker and lighter tonal values, there was no tool that gave me the results I wanted. So I developed my own methods of B&W conversions which is the iSGM method. As for the filters: at some point I think people noticed me and my long exposure photographs and when I announced the first fine art architectural workshop in NYC with Vision Explorers Rod Clark from Formatt-Hitech approached me and introduced the filters to me and we started to collaborate. This collaboration eventually resulted in the JT signature edition filter kits.
I have no specific vision for architectural photography other than that architectural subjects to me are the perfect subjects to express myself with. I do have a specific approach to fine art photography that I already described in this interview. But architecture together with B&W and long exposure photography form my visual language, you could say it’s my native artistic tongue. I chose architecture since I can express my ideas of moving away from reality and shaping the light, in an optimal way with architectural subjects. Probably Stieglitz is right if he says that you choose a subject that symbolizes something from your inner world that you try to express: it’s part of an Equivalent.
It started with me and workshop organizer Daniel Portal in 2011 when he approached me to do a landscape workshop in Argentina with his own workshop studio. I found that very attractive. But once we started discussing and working on the first Argentina workshop I felt more comfortable doing such a workshop with another B&W fine art photographer to help me with handling larger groups and with whom I felt connected from an artistic point of view. That was Sharon Tenenbaum. Then I came up with the idea to do something different: teaching a fine art architectural workshop in an interesting city like New York since I felt more attracted to architectural photography and at that time there was no other similar fine art architectural workshop with multiple instructors. From there on we started working on that idea and at some point decided we wanted to work on the intersection of cinematography as well to bring even more variation to our workshops. That was when we brought Armand Dijcks into our workshop group. In 2012 we did our first workshop in NYC which became a big success and we called ourselves Vision Explorers from that moment onwards because that’s what we wanted to do more than just taking nice photographs: finding our vision in architectural photography.
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Want to get more involved in 1x?Posted 1 month ago
Without our fantastic volunteers, who spend a huge deal of time and effort helping out and improving our community, there would be no 1x at all. We are now looking for people who want to make this community even more fantastic! Getting involved in 1x is one of the best ways to get more recognition in the community yourself and a lot more exposure for your photos.
Right now we are looking for more tutorial editors, who collect tutorials and ask follow up questions to the photographers writing them. Each editor is expected to send out about 50 tutorial requests every month. As an editor you enjoy free Pro membership and crew status. You will get a free copy of our photo book Passion after you have colllected a certain number of tutorials.
We are also looking for translators mainly in Spanish, Indonesian, German, French and Italian. As a translator you will get 2 months of Pro membership for each text you translate.
Send an email to email@example.com if you want to help out and get more involved.
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