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It’s ok to cheat.
Let’s face it, you’re not here on Frame One looking for ways to inspire your professional photography career. You’re here looking for ways to take a better photo.
And few people take better photos more consistently than professional photogs. They spent a lifetime honing posing and lighting skills so they can make a living with pictures that make you go “oh WOW.”
There is simply no crime in copying the work of the best.* By trying to recreate what they imagine, you’re learning what it takes. You’re getting better at everything – composition, preparation, angles, etc. In the meantime, you’re making your spouse/family/frienemies look at you and say “ooo, you’re amazing.”
*just don’t enter it into any photo contests, ok?
My office is loaded with photo books (and links to photo websites). At this level, I don’t directly steal every part of an image, but I do use them for inspiration. Cool technique here. Smart post production there. Then I incorporate it into what I do every day. (Although the shot up above – was from the early days of my photo life. Stole it outright.)
Here are six of my favourite places to look. Flip through these photos yourself – then rip away!
1. chromasia.com – Brilliant portraits, post production and HDR work
2. http://www.platonphoto.com/ -- Platon shows you how to get great portraits with a single light.
3. http://michaelgrecco.com/ -- The famous photographer for famous people (and great ideas).
4. http://www.nickbrandt.com/ -- Wildlife that defies description.
5. http://500px.com/red_dotdesign -- A friend who has brilliant gift of understanding tone.
6. http://www.nickturpin.com/nt11/index.php -- Nick Turpin is my favourite photographer – a lighting genius.
7. http://www.dresswreckers.com/ -- You have never seen wedding photography like this.