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How to get Professional Photos with a Kit Lens: “Nikon D5500″ 5 Min Portrait

Jared Polin April 2, 2015 Comments Off

The Challenge – Use the Nikon D5500 and Kit 18-140 lens for a “Real World Review” and “5 Min Portrait”. The catch, I have never used this camera or lens before. The subject was Joe Beddia of “Pizzeria Beddia” who let me photograph his dough preparation for the evenings pizza.

Being that I had never used this camera before I had to get in the mindset that I can only use the Nikon D5500 and the 18-140 F3.5 to F5.6 kit lens. There is a misconception that you can only get great results with better glass. There is also a misconception that I can only get good photos with the most expensive gear in the world. I know once you watch this video and see the results that will never be a question or concern again.


I have uploaded every single image I captured during this photo shoot (Click Here for the gallery of images). That means you get to see the good the bad the ugly, everything. I fully processed and edited each image because I want people to see the best possible image even if it’s not the best show.

Keep in mind when I deliver images to a client I am only giving them the best of the best. I would never deliver images that I did not deem keepers.

Here’s the thing about kit lenses and why I have been so vocal about not using them, they are variable aperture. This means as you zoom out from 18 to 140 the f stop is going to automatically close down and cut back on the amount of light being let in. So unless you have a handle on the exposure triangle and know how to compensate for these changes on the fly you may end up with less than ideal results.

So the challenge to use this lens was for me to understand what will happen as I zoom out. I know as I zoom out the f stop will close down meaning I am losing light. Because I am losing light I need to do something to compensate for that. The options we have to work with in the exposure triangle are the shutter speed and ISO. I can slow my shutter down to compensate for the loss of light or I could bump my ISO higher to do the same thing. This is where many people see issues with their photos. They crank the ISO as high as they can and wonder why do their images look so grainy and terrible.

This is the mindset I got into during this shoot. I am going to start with an ISO that I think the camera can handle that gives me a fast enough shutter speed to compensate for when I zoom out. This means a starting shutter speed of 1/1000th of a second or more. With entry level cameras like the D5500 you only have one dial to control the shutter speed and F-stop. In order to change the F-stop you have to press another button while turning the back dial which takes time and will result in missed shots.

Why did I BUY a Printer that doesn’t print color?

Jared Polin March 31, 2015 Comments Off

Why did Postman FRO bring me a printer that doesn’t even print in color? The answer is simple, because as photographers we also need to print and scan documents.

The printer is the Brother MFCL2740DW

Wether you are a full time photographer or you play one on the weekend you have a need for a printer/scanner. One of the biggest reasons I purchased this Brother printer is for the multi page scanning option directly to PDF. How many times do you need to sign, scan and email back documents?

The way I used to do it would be scan one document at a time than print them all to a PDF which is time consuming. In this model I simply use the touch screen interface to scan my documents wirelessly to my computer. That’s right, you don’t even need to plug it into the computer.

This is my second Brother printer, I upgraded for the wireless option and the new touch screen. At first I didn’t think I would need the touch screen but now that I have it I use it to it’s full potential.

I could not recommend this printer more highly, Stephen bought one and I bought one for my dads office.

If “FroKnowsPhoto” was an 8-bit Game

Jared Polin March 27, 2015 Comments Off

Click Here to be one of the first to pick up this Limited Edition Shirt.

It has been a little while since I have released an all new design for an I SHOOT RAW Shirt. So when I set out with my designer to create something new the theme was 8-Bit Video game. We tossed around a few ideas before settling in on a “DOOM” inspired t-shirt.

When it came to making a short promo video for the shirt Stephen, Todd and I thought a first person shooter video would be the best. We strapped a GoPro to my chest and climbed my stairs and had Stephen pop out from different door ways. If FroKnowsPhoto was a game I think this is how it would have looked.

Click Here to be one of the first to pick up this Limited Edition Shirt.

I want to see your BEST “Food” Photos

Jared Polin March 26, 2015 Comments Off

To post your best Food Photo please click here.

I want to see your BEST “Food” Photos. As long as something food related is in the photo you can post it. This could be someone eating, a kid with a drink, a tree that has food on it or just plain photos of food.

Post them below here as a comment. Be sure to like the photos you like and don’t be afraid to follow other photographers because this is a great way for you to see other peoples work and find new people to follow.

I will go through all the images posted and select one or two of my favorite images and give that photographer something from Lexar​ and the other something from Squarespace​

You have a few days to post your images so if you don’t have any food photos right now, you have time to go shoot some and share them with the world.

Good Luck

Is this good or bad? Tear down of my first PHOTO website from 2001

Jared Polin March 24, 2015 Comments Off

Who wants to time travel with me way back to the year 2001 to do a “tear down” of my first photography website? I am sure you are wondering how in the world was I able to locate my first website which has been changed numerous times over the last decade and a half. Simple, there is a website called the “Way Back Machine” that let’s you search just about any website and find older iterations.

When I had this site built back around 2000 I had to find someone who knew RAW html. My friend Rick Berk was taking design classes at the time said he would be able to do it. I gave him some direction, photos and a bio and this site right here is what he came up with.

As you can tell there are not a ton of images on the site. There are two basic galleries, one with sports and one with what I would call everything else. The Bio was probably written by me and reading it today leaves me scratching my head. I know I had good intentions when writing it but I think it may have came across a little on the harsh side.

None the less I had a place for my photos online and this was just a start of a long journey to getting to where my site is today. Today I use Squarespace because I don’t have to rely on anyone else to make updates and changes. On top of that it’s affordable and extremely professional looking.

If you are looking to build a professional, simple and affordable site give Squarespace a try. Click Here to get your FREE 14 day trial. If you decide that it’s for you, please use my code FRO at checkout to get 10% Off your first year.