Friday, March 30, 2012

Fridays

Copyright Monica L. Shulman
A snapshot from earlier this week on my iPhone 4S.  See more recent photos on my website here and here.

We're staying in the city this weekend and while it will most like be very busy with work to catch up on, I also have a girls night dinner planned and some fun time to relax with my little family on Sunday.  I hope your weekend is wonderful, and here are some great posts from around the web.

I am in love with this iPhone case.  Buying it is on my to-do for today.

Wired thinks you should ignore these photographers.

Still obsessed with Pinterest.  Recent favorite boards: red lips and gentlemen.

A list of 2000 photographers on Twitter!

These paintings look like marble and I love them.

An interview with Elizabeth Avedon.  Her blog is a personal favorite.

There's a new digital polaroid!

This 17-year-old emerging photographer has built an amazing portfolio of 365 self-portraits.

Rachel Devine is an amazing photographer and mother.

The ultimate Mad Men playlist.  Plus, the many Mad Men romances.

I love this cheeky muppet alphabet poster.

And, did you catch this post about taking better photos with your iPhone?


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Thursday, March 29, 2012

New York Skater

Copyright Monica L. Shulman

I was looking through my archives after this post because I specifically remembered capturing this moment.  I was walking up Broadway near Union Square (just after I took this photo) when I see a very limber, fast and seemingly brazen guy moving against the tide coming toward me.  He wove in and out of people with a nonchalance and confidence that could only belong to a true New Yorker. 

I love these portraits where you can observe a person for just an instant but you suddenly feel like you know so much about them.

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Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Patterns and Prints

AMontiel03

I'm obsessed with these illustrations by Spanish artist Ana Montiel.  She created them for a recent Nina Ricci perfume campaign and the colors and patterns are so evocative.  A selection of these and other designs are available as prints and wallpaper in her online shop.

AMontiel02

She has so many beautiful prints and designs.  I love this one and it's so clever on the sneakers, no?

AMontiel04

Via Honestly WTF and Honey Kennedy.

AMontiel01

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Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Taking better photos with your iPhone

Copyright Monica L. Shulman
Out the window up on 42nd Street after visiting the dentist. 

It's been said that the best camera is the one you have with you and this is especially true with the rise in popularity of mobile phone cameras.  Everyone knows that it’s not the camera but the photographer who is the real magic behind an image and iPhone photography, or iPhoneography, seems to be leading to a future where photographers are no longer defined by the tools they use, or their shooting techniques.  Mobile phone photography is changing the way that professional (and non-pro) photographers work.  

For me, being limited by this technology and not having my usual (expensive) gear to fall back on has given me an unexpected freedom and creative push that I never imagined I would get with a simple camera phone. It's similar to the push that I feel when I shoot with my plastic cameras like my Holga or with my Diana lens or my vintage Polaroid.  On top of all that, it's so much fun to play around with the little camera on your phone and honestly, sometimes it's the most convenient.  Now that I have my daughter to chase after (and really, the girl just runs...walking is SO six months ago) I can't always carry my camera with me.  And, even when I do have my camera, it's so easy and fast to whip out my iPhone.  Some photography purists will say that this is not photography at all but I think there is a time and place for everything and the mobile phone camera and what comes out of it is here to stay.

So, since I get A LOT of email about my iPhone photos (thanks!) I thought I would put together this little list of tips/reminders on how to take not just better pictures, but awesome ones.  And, I use an iPhone but android is fantastic too.  Just check out Rachel Devine's mobile photos.

PS--If you're looking for more tips like how to be creative or how to photograph in low light, you can find them here.

1.  Treat your iPhone like a "real" camera.

I use my iPhone camera like a DSLR.  I set up my shots and composition in the same way I would if I had my Nikon and favorite lenses.  This is part of just pushing yourself to you use your camera to capture fun moments in an artistic and creative way.  Don't think that having your iPhone camera is a limitation because you really can create amazing images with it. But remember that obviously we're not talking about a fancy piece of equipment here.  You're not going to get the shots that you might if you used your other gear but that's not the point.

Copyright Monica L. Shulman
My niece's reflection in an aquarium at the zoo last week.  I had my DSLR in the basket of my stroller because I was holding Lucia. I put her down to have a look at the fish but she wasn't as interested as her cousin who stood still staring for a whole 2 minutes...that's like hours in toddler time.  I popped out the iPhone and got this.

2.  Always shoot to save in your camera roll.

It sounds obvious but sometimes when you shoot directly from an app the photo doesn't get saved in your camera roll.  I like to have all my photos there so you keep an original (large) file.  You can use that file to try out different apps.  And, while I rarely do this, I also like to keep original copies from my camera roll in case I want to edit them in photoshop later like I would my other work.

3.  Experiment with apps to shoot and edit

Using filters to take and share your photos is all the rage right now.  Hello, Instagram?  There are a bunch of cool apps that you can use to have fun with your photos and not just add filters but make editing changes like exposure and saturation.  My current favorites are PS Express, Instagram (duh) and Genius.  You can see all my favorites here.

4. Try new things

You'd be amazed at what a fun, new angle can do to your photos.  Also, I'm a big fan of the square crop.  While I have Instagram to thank for this latest preference, I think it's a unique and unexpected way to showcase photos that sometimes don't work with a traditional crop.  Also, take A LOT of photos.  The good thing is that it's your phone and you can just delete the ones you don't want.  I tend to shoot a ton and then save everything when I use my DSLR and I keep everything.  With my iPhone I don't feel as bad about deleting ones that aren't great because after all, it's just a picture on your phone.  You don't have to shoot like you're going for a Pulitzer.  Have fun with it.  It's a camera phone!

Copyright Monica L. Shulman



Do you have any tips?  What are your favorite apps?

Copyright 2009 Monica L. Shulman
Southampton.

Copyright Monica L. Shulman
Tribeca.

Copyright Monica L. Shulman
Lucia meets a peacockShe is so brave that she just kept walking toward the bird as though she was hypnotized.  I was too nervous to try to take a photo with my DSLR because I wanted my hands free to hold her back if necessary.  The iPhone did the trick.

And...
   
Some fun apps and more tips.   

Lisa Bettany is currently on an around-the-world trip and using only her iPhone to chronicle her adventures.  

And, this is a must-see for camera phone enthusiasts...the best camera with live photos from around the world.  


And some very cool accessories from Photojojo for your iPhone like this panorama lens, macro, fisheye, wide angle and telephoto lenses.

See more of my iPhoneography on my website here and here.

Monday, March 26, 2012

Instagram Weekend

Copyright Monica L. Shulman
At the zoo.

I'm having one of those months where I feel like I blink and three days have passed.  It was meant to be when out of nowhere last Thursday, the internets stopped working and I had no access to anything.  Being cut off from the web forced me to clean the growing pile of papers on my desk, get everything in order for my taxes (no, I'm not done yet) and generally do all of those annoying things that eat away at your mind when you're busy procrastinating.  Sadly the blackout prevented me from publishing my post last Friday but the good news is that I saved it for this week.

Copyright Monica L. Shulman
We went to the zoo and rode the bug carousel!

Fortunately I was still very busy running around and capturing a lot of it on my iPhone so here's my weekend via Instagram.

Copyright Monica L. Shulman
Lucia meets a Baboon.

Copyright Monica L. Shulman

Copyright Monica L. Shulman

Copyright Monica L. Shulman
Running errands in midtown.

Copyright Monica L. Shulman

Copyright Monica L. Shulman
She loves her nap.

Copyright Monica L. Shulman

Copyright Monica L. Shulman
 The buildings look like legos downtown.

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Thursday, March 22, 2012

Running with your eyes closed

Copyright Monica L. Shulman

We went to the beach on a very cold afternoon in February and of course we were the only ones there.  I know that there are others like us who go to take in the ocean in winter and feel like it's there just for them because there were lots of fresh footprints in the sand.  By the time we arrived they were gone and we had the place all to ourselves.

Lucia loves to run up and down the beach and we just let her go.  It's different in the city for obvious reasons.  She runs in the park but obviously she's got me two steps behind which is never as much fun for her.  She loves to run everywhere actually and sometimes the girl runs with her eyes closed.  I love knowing that she feels so free and fearless.  It also freaks me out but mostly I love that she is so excited and curious about everything.  I can hear the waves crashing on an endless loop in my head when the water comes in and out.  It's so relaxing.  And then I start to laugh because on this particular day my wild and adventurous toddler was running so fast toward the water that I nearly had to throw my camera to the side to chase after her.  You don't see that part (the best, funniest and most nerve-racking part for me) looking at these melancholy and serene photos right? 

Copyright Monica L. Shulman

Copyright Monica L. Shulman


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Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Crescent Moons

Copyright Monica L. Shulman
When something catches her attention there is no looking away.

When Lucia was an infant I would spend hours of our day doing things like counting her eyelashes while she slept in my arms, memorizing all of her features including the way her eyes look like giant crescent moons when they are closed, kissing the little dimples on her hands.  I liked to point out all the ways that she is like her dad or like me.  Today my most favorite activity is watching her and learning all of the things that make her who she is - her own person.  I'm discovering so many beautiful and random quirks every day.  I am amazed by this spirited, curious, passionate and hilarious little girl who is teaching me more about life and myself than I ever thought possible.

Copyright Monica L. Shulman

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Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Stickygrams!

Copyright Monica L. Shulman 

I'm on a mission to chronicle my daughter's childhood (Exhibit A).  My latest obsession is the Stickygram...magnets of your instagram photos!  They're adorable and Lucia loves to play with them.  She stacks them up, lines them up, carries them around the apartment with her and sticks them on everything from the fridge to the garbage can to our HVAC units to her stroller wheels.  I like them because they look great on our fridge and they remind me of all the little, random moments that I just had to capture with my iPhone.  Plus, the quality is surprisingly awesome.  Oh, and they ship everywhere and it's free

Copyright Monica L. Shulman

Check 'em out here.

Just for fun I took these photos with my iPhone.  Maybe I will share it on Instagram and make a Stickygram of them.  You see?  Obsessed!

Copyright Monica L. Shulman
Do you see Godzilla eating New York City?  Clearly our girl has a thing for magnets of all shapes and sizes.

Copyright Monica L. Shulman


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Monday, March 19, 2012

Instagram Weekend

Copyright Monica L. Shulman

Looking at my Instagram photos you'd think it was a most relaxing and quiet weekend.  In fact we didn't stop running around from one thing to the next.  Thankfully one of our destinations on the list was the beach and the quiet and crashing waves were quite welcome.

Copyright Monica L. Shulman

Copyright Monica L. Shulman
I was excited to bust out my brightly colored denim this week.  #yayspring!

Copyright Monica L. Shulman
Waiting for summer.

Copyright Monica L. Shulman
Saw this book cover and it reminded me of this post from last week.

Copyright Monica L. Shulman

Copyright Monica L. Shulman

Copyright Monica L. Shulman
Obsessed with stickygrams...coming later this week!

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Friday, March 16, 2012

Fridays

Copyright Monica L. Shulman
A different kind of view of the Hudson River and the spring sun.

This might have been the fastest week of my life.  I thought it was Thursday this morning and wondered why my husband kept saying that he was looking forward to the weekend like it started tonight or something.  It's safe to say that I'm feeling very tired and need to catch up on my sleep over the next couple of days.  Other than relaxing and enjoying some more warm weather, we have absolutely nothing planned.  I hope you have a lovely weekend, and here are some fun links from around the web.

Anatomy of an ideal Google+ profile (I need to work on mine).

Photographer Jamie Beck and her equally talented fiancee Kevin Burg made another video.  This time the lead actor is a bottle of bubbly.

Did you catch this article I wrote about finding your way to success?

13 digital point and shoot cameras used by the pros.

Photos of winter.

A letter from John Steinbeck to his son about love. 

Letters of Note.

Making lists.

How has it already been one year since the tsunami in Japan?

Sesame Ellis and her lensbaby.  I really want one.

Speaking of things I want/need/want....the Nikon d800.

The ultimate photo timeline NOT on Facebook.

D*Face arrives in New York City.

What's your sign?

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