Category Archives: Art in Photography

How to Steal Man Ray’s Portrait Style

Man Ray is one of the great first iconic photographers; his portrait style has something magical about it even to this day. He was one of the first artists that started to use photography as an art form.

He was revolutionary with his photographic techniques, including double exposure (which we will look at in a future blog) and early experiments with color, though black and white is what he is well known for.

Man Ray’s portraits were often around shoulder length, though there are some full length, you can see old photos of his that he would ‘crop’ by making what he wanted the photo to be.

This is a quick tutorial into how to turn your photos into his signature portrait style.

shape sliders

After marking up the photo in PortraitPro Body, I play around with the sliders a little bit, to see what looks best, the only setting I changed on mine was the Curves one, in this image you can’t see the difference too much.

face body

Don’t worry too much about the color and look of the make up, we are concentrating more on striking features, as this image will be made black and white in a minute.

black and white

In the picture settings, I move the slider to fully black and white, then move the others back and forth to get the lighting that I want.

end picutre man ray blog

This is the photo I export from PortraitPro Body and import into Smart Photo Editor.

cropped photo

The first thing that I do in Smart Photo Editor is crop down the size of the photo (the crop tool is on the right hand side.

object removal photo

After cropping the image to your chosen look, the background needed work on, a out of focus light grey background is what we are aiming for, it my photo there was somethings in the background that I needed to get removed to have that nice out of focus background. I used the Object Removal Tool which is found on the right hand side of the screen. As you can see, I have edited quite a few pieces. Don’t worry if like mine it doesn’t look great, we just want to remove the defining features.

select area

Next we are adding an effect to the background, you do this by selecting the Select Area button on the RHS, click on background, then color in what you want to add an effect to, on your left hand side of the screen, you can adjust the size of your selection tool.

Don’t worry if you go too far over, you can correct this easily by the erase from selection button on the right.

Click the Confirm Selection and Browse Effects button on the left when you have finished.

blurred background

The effect I chose was called ‘Blur’, you can change the strength of the effects you choose but I kept mine as full.

This created a lovely blurry effect with a slightly shadow look from the darker part of my background.

end picutre man ray blog_pe

Here is my end result of a Man Ray style portrait.

Hope you have enjoyed this tutorial and try out PortraitPro Body and Smart Photo Editor, they are both currently 50% off in the sale.

Education isn't something you can finish

Photo editing in the new school year

The start of a new school year can be the start of a new phase for everyone, not just those returning to education. It can be a good time to think about engaging in a program of self-study. You can even begin a clean mid-year diary and completely start fresh.

Photography covers such a broad range of genres that there’s always something to learn and improve on. There’s always a new piece of equipment to try out or a different aspect of photography to learn about. Just as art itself covers a broad range of styles, photography also contains a range of types too.  There’s no time limit on when you can pick up your learning again.

Whether it’s your photography skills you want to improve, or you need to brush up on your business skills, there’s always something you can be doing to drive your photography business to the next level.

At Anthropics Technology we’re also constantly learning and developing even better software to help you even more in your work.  With version 15 we introduced new makeup controls to help you add makeup to your portrait editing.  With version 12 ( which immediately preceded v15)  we introduced relighting features so that you could edit your portraits with better lighting, so if the light you had available at the time wasn’t what you wanted it to be, you could produce a better image than you originally had.

PortraitPro 15 makeup before after

We’re proud to be award-winning, recently winning the Bauer Gear of the Year award for Best Plugin.  We’re always working to improve our software and to bring our loyal fans the features that will help them in their work and their leisure.

If you’ve already got to grips with PortraitPro, why not check out our latest addition to the collection, LandscapePro?

Challenge yourself to a new genre today and learn something new without going back to school.

Download your free trial of PortraitPro or LandscapePro.

Where to capture iconic images on your summer vacation

Travelling and taking a break from normality is good for the soul and it’s good for your creativity.  If you’re booking a last minute summer vacation and you need some inspiration for some great iconic images to capture, here’s our top five places to photograph.

New York

The must have shot: Take a trip to Top of The Rock, for that not to be missed shot of Lower Manhattan with the Empire State Building too.

View of Empire State building from Top of the Rock

 

The Non-Tourist shot: it’s virtually impossible to find anything that hasn’t been done before in New York, but check out the rooftop bars for some other unusual angles, plus, they’re free to visit.

Chicago

The must have shot: Everyone heads to Millennium Park and Cloud Gate for the iconic shot of the Bean as the sculpture is affectionately known.

The Non-Tourist shot: The neo-gothic Chicago Tribune Tower may be another very much photographed building, but head to the top of the building, to The Crown at Tribune Tower for an unusual angle on an iconic building.

Philadelphia

The must have shot: In the City of Brotherly Love, it has to be the LOVE sculpture in Love Park, officially known as JFK Plaza, with its view down Benjamin Franklin Parkway to the Art Museum too. 

LOVE Park or JFK Plaza

The Non-Tourist shot: Off the beaten track, head down to Philadelphia’s Magic Gardens for some great mosaic artwork, and wander along South Street to take in the alternative side of the city.

Street Art on South Street Philadelphia

Grand Canyon

The must have shot: The Grand Canyon Skywalk, located at the West Rim, gives anyone the chance to view the Grand Canyon from above, where previously you’d have needed a helicopter to capture a similar view.

The Non-Tourist shot: It’s wise not to go off the beaten track in Grand Canyon National Park, and if you want to go further afield, then take a guide with you.  But for an alternative view, and thought to be the best view, at the South Rim, then take a trip to Bright Angel Lodge, and the Bright Angel Trail.

Photographer at Grand Canyon

Las Vegas

The must have shot: The fountains at the Bellagio are a not to be missed spectacle. The great thing about Vegas is that all the hotels are freely open to wander around like indoor towns within a town.  Try dining at a different hotel every day and a different sight to photograph every night too.

The Non-Tourist shot: Everyone heads to the Strip, but don’t miss a taste of old Vegas, and the light show at the Fremont Street Experience.

With photo editing software PortraitPro andLandscapePro  to help you get the best from your shots, there’s even more reason to book that trip now.  It’s good for you.

Interview with a Pro – Manfred Baumann

We recently had a great chance to interview another one of our PortraitPro users.

Manfred Baumann has been using PortraitPro in his portraits for many years and recently got in touch with us.  We asked him what it’s like to work with some of the biggest stars in the world.

Angelina and Brat Pitt 2012 ManfredBaumann.com

photo by ManfredBaumann.com – Angelina and Brat Pitt 2012

PortraitPro: How did you get into photography, and what lead you to photograph Hollywood actors?

Manfred Baumann:  Sir Roger Moore discovered one of my pictures at an exhibition in Hamburg and bought it for his house in Switzerland. He is a big fan of photography, which is how we got into contact. He was my first Hollywood star, and that got the ball rolling.

PortraitPro: When was your big break in the industry?

I think that it is a bunch of little pieces of the puzzle that combine into the big picture. From the first photo shoot with Sir Roger Moore to the last official shoot with Tony Curtis shortly before he passed away. But also my collaboration with National Geographic and lots of other things

PortraitPro: What advice would you give aspiring photojournalists?

Manfred Baumann:  It is important to continue growing and make sure that viewers can recognize your signature in your photographs. 

PortraitPro: Can you tell us the story behind some of your favorite images?

Manfred Baumann: I think that my picture of Tony Curtis is one of my favorites because he passed away shortly after and because I could see in his eyes during the session that he was very grateful and that he had had a wonderful life.

PortraitPro: Do you do your own photo editing or do you have an assistant for retouching?

Manfred Baumann: I do everything myself all the way to the final image.

PortraitPro: Can you share with us some images where PortraitPro has been used?

Manfred Baumann: Many of my portraits are developed with your software, and it’s a tool that I definitely would not want to do without.

David and Hayley Hasselhoff 2015 photo by ManfredBaumann.com

photo by ManfredBaumann.com – David and Hayley Hasselhoff 2015

PortraitPro: You’ve photographed so many huge Hollywood stars, how does it feel to capture images of such well known and often photographed people?

Manfred Baumann:   When you have worked with as many stars as I have, you get used to it and no longer put them on a pedestal. They are people just like you and I, some of them are complicated and others less so.

PortraitPro:  What equipment do you use when shooting in your studio?  Do you enjoy using any kind of camera, for instance a smartphone camera for more casual shots?

Manfred Baumann:  I work with Leica, Nikon, and Hensel light.  Sometimes I also like taking pictures with the Microsoft Lumia smartphone, it has a lens from Zeiss and 20 million pixels.

PortraitPro:  Your work includes a lot of candid, street photography. What advice can you offer on taking street photography?

Manfred Baumann:  The new Leica SL is my favorite for this; I really love street photography and capturing moments in time that way. The older such pictures become, the better they are.

John Malkovich and Jack Black photo by ManfredBaumann.com

photos by ManfredBaumann.com

PortraitPro: Many of your portraits are black and white. What influences your decision on whether an image should be black and white, or color?

Manfred Baumann: I love black and white photography because it is very reduced and reveals the essence of a picture.

PortraitPro: You’re offering classes on photography; are you speaking at any events, or can PortraitPro blog readers join one of your classes?

Manfred Baumann:  You can find the workshops that I hold on my web site. I also hold workshops at public events like the Photokina 2016, the Skoda Festival in Prague, and a meet and greet in the middle of the year where my latest photo book will be presented at the Leica gallery in Vienna

PortraitPro:  Do you have any exhibitions currently running or coming up?

Manfred Baumann:  “Special” is a project that is very important to me and in which I took portraits of intellectually disabled people. It will be shown for the first time in autumn. My latest best-of photo book will be released at the end of May, and there are of course my current exhibitions Alive, L.A. Stories, and many more.

PortraitPro: Anything else you’d like to tell our readers about your work and your career?

Manfred Baumann: A technically perfect photograph can be far from a good picture, that is one of my philosophies of photography that I would like to share with your readers.

We’ve had a wonderful insight into the world of a professional photographer, who spends his life photographing some of the world’s most famous celebrities.

Check out more of Manfred’s work on his own page. 

You too can use PortraitPro and create professional, magazine-quality images. Download the free trial today.

LandscapePro software

Anthropics Technology announces LandscapePro

 

We’re delighted to announce this week the launch of our brand new landscape editing software, LandscapePro.  

Just like PortraitPro, LandscapePro  is available in standalone and Adobe Photoshop, Lightroom and Elements plug-in editions. The new software radically simplifies and speeds up outdoor and nature photo retouching. It includes landscape relighting, sky replacement, 3D depth estimation, a depth of field simulator, distance controls, intelligent selection tools, and photo-adaptive controls among other powerful features. With one-click presets and targeted editing available, users can create beautiful landscapes in seconds.

Woodland before and after

LandscapePro is a new way to enhance pictures that rises to the challenges and nuances of landscape photography. It assumes no prior knowledge or technical skills, and photographers can create unique, dramatic effects quickly.

“Inspired by the success of Anthropics’s PortraitPro software, we are delighted to introduce a new product to help photographers expand their creativity and take landscape retouching to the next level,” said Andrew Berend, CEO, Anthropics. “LandscapePro offers an innovative and easy way to create stunning landscape photography, and can be used by novices or experienced photographers alike. As its intelligent controls uniquely adapt to the features of each photo, it enables photographers to do incredible things with their outdoor photos simply by using sliders.”

Easily enhance landscape photos. LandscapePro contains a host of unique tools to enable anyone to create beautiful scenic photographs.

  • Intelligent selection tools.
  • Unique editing controls that adapt to the photo.
  • Easy-to-use slider interface.
  • No technical skills required.
  • LandscapePro Studio handles RAW files and can be run as a Photoshop, Lightroom and Elements plug-in.

Wedding image LandscapePro

 

 

Check out the LandscapePro video here. 

Download your trial of LandscapePro today.

 

 

Woman street fashion

Fashion Week – Opportunities to get some great images for your portfolio

Everyone who comes to town for Fashion Week, whether it’s New York, London, Paris or Milan, are likely to be making a statement with their fashion.

It’s a great way to get some fresh and interesting images for your portfolio. The locations of the events are listed online, so you can catch people arriving on the street. They’re all expecting to see photographers, so they’re very willing to be photographed. Plus, everyone has made an effort, and dressed in their most interesting outfits.

In fashion it can seem like anything goes, so feel free to be really creative.  Doing something out of the ordinary can help you develop your creativity. As many of our professional photographers have told us, it’s often your personal creative work that people will see and hire you for, especially if you’re aiming to find work as a commercial photographer.

If you’re lucky enough to get in to a catwalk event then you’ll get even more opportunity to capture the latest fashions, but it’s the candids you’ll capture on the street.

If you’re not yet ready to brave the crowds at fashion week, but you’d still like to get some images for your portfolio, and experience the fashion show atmosphere, try looking for a smaller event you could get in to first.

Catwalk fashion

Try searching for free events you can attend during fashion week, or try going to an event out of Fashion Week first, when the crowds, and the atmosphere won’t be so intense.

Check out the free fashion show every Friday afternoon at Galeries Lafayette, in Paris.

We love fashion portraits, check out what we like on Pinterest. 

Get magazine-quality portrait editing software here!

Seniors Class Photo, Graduating class of 2016.

When posing full class photos remember that it’s something that they will want to keep forever. Your design should be classic and timeless. It should be something that they will look at in the years to come, and think of it as a great photo with all their friends.

If you’re fortunate enough to have the contract for the official, whole class photo, it’s an ideal opportunity to tell the seniors that they can use you for their individual senior class photo too.

High school senior lying on grass

Photographing  teenagers can be challenging.

  • It’s a good idea to have a meeting with a senior where you sit down and explain how it’s all going to work. Giving them some idea how it will work in advance means that they’ll be much more comfortable when they come to you for the shoot.
  • It may be the first time they’ve ever had their portrait taken; they’ll be nervous and not sure what to do.  This is where you can set them at their ease; give them some tips on what they can do to get the best out of their session.
  • In the session, explain that they should bring appropriately coordinated outfits.  Talk about what their style usually is, and advise them on the benefits of coordinating colors. Get them to bring several outfits and maybe some props to the session.  3 or 4 changes of clothes should give you enough to get some good shots.   Props they might bring with them could include their musical instrument, sports kit / equipment, or anything associated with any other hobbies they may have. Allowing their personality to shine through your images is a key part of your job.
  • Discuss what locations you might want to use for their shoot too. Places in your town that they might like to go, to spend time with their friends, and places that look good. Fall’s a great time to be taking senior photos, but the changeable weather can be a problem, so make sure you have a rain plan.
  • In your session, you should also discuss what level of portrait retouching is acceptable. Teenagers will want to know that you can make them look good in your images. With PortraitPro, you can remove any unwanted acne, blemishes or marks, but still retain anything that might be a permanent part of the person’s features.  This can add to the teenager’s confidence level in having their photo taken for the first time, knowing that whatever issues they might have at the time, won’t be a lasting memory.  You can also remove stray hairs, remove red eye, and add catch lights. PortraitPro helps you get just the right amount of retouching. You can use the restore brush to bring back anything you wish to keep. You can keep everything as natural as possible, whilst eliminating what the person wants to remove.
  • You should discuss what they can expect to receive from you at the end of the session. This can create a sense of anticipation for the products they receive. Let them know that you’ll also share a few sneak peak images on Facebook.

Download your free trial of PortraitPro today, and see how it can help you create great senior portraits

Check out our Pinterest boards for more ideas.

10 Things to photograph on the last weekend of summer

Whether you want to escape the city, or head to the city this weekend, there are lots of things to photograph this weekend. If the weather’s good, it’s a great time to get out with your camera and shoot some last shots of summer.

Here are our top 5 interesting cities to see this weekend:

Philadelphia

In the City :  Climb the Rocky steps, pay what you wish on the first Sunday of the month, and pay a visit to the Art Museum, for some great, iconic images of the city too. This is one of the best views of Center City. 

Out of town: Head to Longwood Gardens for Nightscape: A Light and Sound Experience. Get some great images with light and dark.

Chicago

In the City: For the best architectural views of Chicago, take the Architectural River tour. Afterwards, stop off at Millennium Park to see the Bean. There’s always something interesting to discover in the Park.

Out of Town: Not so far out of town, you can hit the beach. One of the great things about Chicago is that you’re so close to a beach. Walk up Michigan Avenue to find Oak Street beach.  It’s not the ocean, but it’s still a great place to soak up the sun and get some great images of the sky scrapers in the background. The kids will love it too.

New York

In the City: In the city that never sleeps it’s hard to choose what to do, but on Labor Day Weekend,  most of the usual tourist destinations will still be open, all the restaurants and shops will still be open too. Live like a tourist for a day, even if you’re not. Check out the view from Top of the Rock, for the best view of the Empire State Building!

View of Empire State building from Top of the Rock

Out of Town: It’s a long way to go to leave NYC behind you, but with Central Park right in the middle, why would you need to escape to the countryside? You can manage to pretend you’re away from it all, sunbathing and taking in the greenery.  Take a picnic, and check out the Carousel too.  The city’s so big that there are several parks to choose from, but Central Park’s almost 6 times bigger than Vatican City, so there’s plenty of space to escape the bustling crowds and find your own place to relax.

 Washington D.C.

In the City: With flight and gas prices down again, it’s a great time to discover the capital, and the museums are free to visit too. Check out the National Gallery of Art, across the street from the National Archives. Visit all the museums, they’re all free!

Out of Town: Why not visit the University of Maryland’s Dairy for some handmade ice cream. As the end of summer arrives, you can capture some portraits of people eating their ice creams.

Milwaukee

In the City:  Check out the Harley Davidson Factory this weekend at the Custom Bike show event. There’ll be lots of people willing to pose with their bikes and there’s music and food too, so there’s something all the family can enjoy. Further down 6th street, you can take in another tour, Milwaukee’s hidden gem, Great Lakes Distillery, Wisconsin’s first distillery since prohibition.

Out of Town: Take a trip to Leon’s frozen custard on South 27th, for some typical Wisconsin frozen desert, and that retro 50’s feel. Supposed to be the inspiration for the diner in Happy Days, Leon’s still has it’s original signage.

Wherever you are this Labor Day weekend, look for some interesting portraits. Take the time to look around you and see what interesting images you can find. PortraitPro will  help you with your portrait retouching, so you always get the best images. Try it for free today.

Photo editing software and family scrapbooking

2 girls looking at photos

Before the kids go back to school, give them one last job to help you out this summer.

Get them to create a few pages for your family scrapbook, and record what you did this summer.

Whether you’ve been to a wonderful wedding, or have some great vacation memories, you can scrapbook it all and keep your memories in print for generations to come. Portrait editing software can enhance your vacation photos so that everyone gets an image of themselves that they would like to keep.

Use your photo editing software to touch up your photos. You can give them the extra enhancement they need. When you’re all having a great time, there’s a rush to see everything and do everything, and to still capture the moment on camera.

You can also use your photos to make craft items too. Why not get the kids to make customized bunting to hang in their bedroom?

You can also cover notebooks and give an old binder a new lease of life by covering it with photos.

Check out more ideas for using your favorite photos from this summer on our Photo Crafts board. 

Try out portrait editing software today and get creative effects here.

10 ways to improve your photography skills

As “Back to School” looms for the kids, it’s a good time to think of a new learning project for yourself too.

  • Take a college class, and learn from someone with a solid experience in photography.
  • Join a photographic society, camera club or a meetup group.
  • Ask trusted friends and family for critique.
  • Practice every day. No matter what the subject, or the weather, just keep taking pictures.
  • Learn to problem solve. You may not have the perfect equipment, but you’ll have something that will do a reasonable job.
  • Get to know your camera inside out. Knowing your way around your camera and other photography equipment can help you take a shot quicker when you need to be speedy.
  • Set yourself a photography challenge such as a 365 project. Working within a particular constraint can be interesting and challenging.
  • Get out and visit somewhere new. You’ll be inspired to take pictures of somewhere you haven’t seen before.
  • Get to know all of your photography equipment well, including your post processing equipment. There’s a wealth of tools in PortraitPro to help you make better pictures, and it’s very easy to get going very quickly.
  • Become an art student. Not just in the formal sense by taking a class, but start to consider yourself a student of art of all kinds. Photography is informed by other art forms, and is aesthetically pleasing when it conforms to the same rules as other art.

For instance, the artist Rembrandt is remembered for his style of painting light and shadow on faces, and this method is often employed by photographers. Chiaroscuro is another art term referring to the use of light and dark, and is often associated with the work of Caravaggio, who uses the light and dark in his paintings.

Man with rembrandt lightingFinding other art to photograph, such as sculpture, Haute Couture, or architecture, can help you learn about pleasing lines and composition, which can help you improve your own art.

Start experimenting with PortraitPro, download the free trial today.