My name is LARRY VINCENT. I'm a writer, speaker, photographer and lovable nerd based in Los Angeles. When I'm not writing here about things that inspire me, I look after The Brand Studio at United Talent Agency.
I wish to encourage the reader not to be intimidated by the Zone System. It really is only a refinement of the concepts [of exposure]. Furthermore, the Zone System can be usefully applied by all photographers, even those using automated 35mm cameras, in black-and-white and color photography. With an automatic camera, the Zone System at least provides a framework for understanding when a departure from “normal” exposure and processing will help achieve the desired image. Without the Zone System, only years of trial-and-error experience can develop a similar comprehensive understanding of the interaction of light, film and processing procedures.
Ansel Adams in The Negative, the second book in his landmark series on photographic technique.
The Zone System was widely taught in formal photographic programs for decades. Though it is seldom mentioned in the age of digital photography, it remains as a one of the best approaches to exposure. By placing the tones of an image into discrete zones of luminance, a photographer using the Zone System can achieve better contrast and more control of an image.
Imagine a Maasai warrior, or a Maasai woman adorned with beads - it’s one of the most powerful images of tribal Africa. Dozens of companies use it to sell products - but Maasai elders are now considering seeking protection for their “brand”.
Dressed in smart white checked shirt and grey sweater, you’d hardly know Isaac ole Tialolo is Maasai.
The large round holes in his ears - where his jewellery sometimes sits - might be a clue, though.
Isaac is a Maasai leader and elder. Back home in the mountains near Naivasha, in southern Kenya, he lives a semi-nomadic life, herding sheep, goats, and - most importantly - cattle.
But Isaac is also chair of a new organisation, the Maasai Intellectual Property Initiative, and it’s a project that’s beginning to take him around the world - including, most recently, London.
“We all know that we have been exploited by people who just come around, take our pictures and benefit from it,” he says.
“We have been exploited by so many things you cannot imagine.”
Crunch time for Isaac came about 20 years ago, when a tourist took a photo of him, without asking permission - something the Maasai, are particularly sensitive about.
“We believed that if somebody takes your photograph, he has already taken your blood,” he explains.
Isaac was so furious that he smashed the tourist’s camera. Twenty years later, he is mild-mannered and impeccably turned out - but equally passionate about what he sees as the use, and abuse, of his culture.
“I think people need to understand the culture of the others and respect it,” he says.
Stock photography is a way of life for those of us who work in advertising and branding. But we don’t often think about whether or not the people in the photos we buy wish to be there. The Maasai tribe is taking steps to protect its culture and prevent unauthorized use of photos of its people.
I received this Fuji X100S about 3 weeks ago for my birthday. All my photography friends have been raving about it. The phrase “the best camera ever” keeps surfacing. I have to say, the more I play with this little gem the more I love it. You can take it everywhere and the quality is beautiful.
What a pleasure it was to collaborate with Brittany Bell … not once — but twice! — this holiday weekend. There is a wonderful kind of electricity that happens when you’re behind the lens and the person in font of it just happens to be — well, electric! You will pry my camera from my fingers when I’m dead.
“It’s probably the most dangerous single sport that I’ve ever seen” — New York Times photographer Fred Conrad on his beautiful assignment shooting the PBR at Madison Square Garden. Check out these photos.
When my daughter Jordan was diagnosed with a rare brain tumor in 2003, our whole family began a journey that has led us through many unexpected twists and turns. I write about this ongoing adventure and the girl that is my muse here.