Creative Friends "Eric Paré + Kim henry" by Amr Tahtawi

Creative Friends is a series of blog post i will write for my experience and friendship with Creative people around the world, people i admire and feel lucky, happy and blessed to be around.

The first to open up this series are a couple of Amazing human beings and dear friends to my heart. Eric Paré and Kim Henry 

For a year now i've been following both on Social media and enjoy watching them getting bigger and better at what they do and what they do is simply an extraordinary passion practice. They travel for Light Painting while giving workshops on how to do it! When i first met him in Dubai, he instantly stood for a humble creative and kind person with his beautiful professional model and as time went by i got to know them both better.

My Special capture in the last night at the desert testing my idea with Eric and Kim.

My Special capture in the last night at the desert testing my idea with Eric and Kim.

Eric is the kind of guy whom i call a visionary creative. An Extreme dreamer who love to test any visuals that comes to his imaginative mind. Kim is the lady from outer space who fits perfectly in the heart of Eric's enigmatic captures and shine as the timeless angel of light to astonish you with her stillness, figure and agility!

I was lucky to have 2 long nights at the desert with Eric and Kim trying ideas exchanging imagination and tips about light, tools and concepts and it felt just perfect to learn from the global Master of Light painting in my humble opinion.

These are the results of our night out :

Eric's Enigmatic star trail capture that mesmerised me.

Eric's Enigmatic star trail capture that mesmerised me.

more of my takes below :

Now Let me share Some of Eric's Portfolio that inspired me a lot :

 LightSpin

"This is the story of how I managed to take half a million pictures of contemporary dancers in the dark using light-painting, stop-motion and bullet-time techniques. Technical constraints and limitations of working in a 360 degree environment narrowed the visual possibilities and brought to life the LightSpin signature and flow after months of trials and errors in complete darkness." 

Little Circle is a dance film project by photographer Eric Paré and contemporary dancer Kim Henry. They first spent a few months in a tiny dark studio during a cold Montreal’s winter to capture motion in 360 degree using cameras on a circular ring. When spring arrived, they decided to get out of the dark and make a last spin, the biggest of their lives, the greatest they could achieve: a full round trip around the world. They left their tiny playground to explore and get inspired by infinite spaces: deserts, oceans, fields and mountains. A breathtaking experience where landscape blends into hypnotic and delicate dance movements. A poetic documentary by Kim Henry & Eric Paré

Fotolia TEN collaboration

This is a collaboration between Eric Paré and Mike Campau for the Ten Collection Season 3 episode 1, by Fotolia.

Finally i feel happy and blessed to meet such positive souls and creative minds as Eric & Kim
Follow them on Instagram @ericparephoto and @kimhenry.dance

To Crop or not to Crop! by Amr Tahtawi

Have you heard the news? Instagram goodies come in Twos. Landscape And Portrait Photos / Videos

August 27, 2015 i felt happy to update my Instagram for the new outside the square features. Now when you upload photos, you can pinch or tap a format button on the bottom left to post their landscape or portrait photos / videos. Squares can still be used, though.

is it a big deal?

The option could help new methods of artistic expression to emerge on Instagram. Traditionally shot wide angle landscapes photos won't use the whitespace up and down and videos won’t lose their cinematic feel, square video are bad awkward anyways. Many photographers hated squares cause they were forced to crop out their full stories. And for casual everyday users, the update means easier posting to Instagram without cropping out friends faces and other body parts.

Before I proceed this article will be highlighting the portrait orientation as I think that's Best part of this update.

I'm using the same image to show the difference visually, from far left you can see we've always had to either use a third party application for filling whitespace use it fully but with less details and quality or crop it in square and lose the composition you kept perfecting in-camera and while processing. then Finally the new update where you don't have to crop it square anymore and it's more enjoyable visually now with so much details. So the difference in details and size wise between the original 3:2 image is now less.

BUT...

It's not really that perfect, now you can upload your portrait oriented images as they were originally taken But not 100%. It's not uploading the full image yet. if you look above you can see the far right image is not fully uploaded on 2nd left to it. It’s much closer yes and a huge update, but the aspect ratio seems to be 5:4 instead of 3:2 or at least 4:3. The good news is Landscape oriented images will stay at full original aspect ratio.

free template for best results :

Since Instagram latest release where they changed the resolution bumping it from 640px x 640px to 1080px x 1080px, i found that for best results in Vertical orientation you'll need to export them from Lightroom / Photoshop with the 5:4 aspect ratio and a resolution of 1080px x 1350px. Now for photographers who like to prepare their photos ahead for Instagram like me, it's important to know the exact crop of the new vertical orientation and So for making things easier I made a FREE vertical template ( .psd) for you to use and enjoy.

6 lessons learned from Photographing a kite-surfer! by Amr Tahtawi

Spent a day with Omar Darwish, at the blue lagoon, Dahab, Egypt. A 29 years old passionate Egyptian Advanced Kitesurfer with his Light weight gear easily fit for travel and nothing on his mind but to have a great weekend.

As well as capturing some awesome Extreme action shots, Omar was kind enough to answer my photo interview with him. We talked about how long he has been surfing, gave me some great advice about getting started, locations and shared fun stories!

So let me share my reflections of that day spent by and in the lagoon with a talented Kite surfer in 6 things i've learned

1- EGYPT IS A KITESURFER HEAVEN!

Egypt is definitely one of the best places on earth to kite surf. Why? It's full of virgin spots not yet discovered and even the known one stays spacious and clean that makes you feel you own the spot.

Some of the kitesurfing spots in Egypt :

  1. Abu Soma Bay Lagoon chosen for the first World Championship in Kitesurfing (PKRA) held in Egypt.
  2. Blue Lagoon - Dahab ( Photographed here )
  3. Safaga the “birthplace” of kitesurfing in Egypt.
  4. The Island (Ras Sudr)
  5. El Gouna
  6. Hamata - Marsa Allam
  7. Zaafarana
  8. Wadi Lahami Lagoon

2- KITESURFING IS ALL EXTREME BODY WORK

Kite Surfing is a sport combining Wake boarding, Windsurfing, Surfing, Paragliding, so it's a total workout that can replace the Gym into 1 Extreme sport. That's not just physically challenging, it's mentally stretching and fun.

3- ORIGINAL HIGHS ARE RELATIVE!

We all have that thing that takes us to cloud no.9. For some its Music, others writing, eating, Traveling....etc but i never imagined that Waves and Wind riding is an ultimate High, that all kite surfers enjoy and after all Beauty is in the eye of the 'surfer'. Watching kite surfers alone is such a fun experience and shooting the soul of the sport was very rewarding.

4- KITESURFING IS EASY TO LEARN! 

Learning kitesurfing is pretty easy, It usually takes about a week. BUT! After mastering the basics it takes practice, practice, and more practice. Kitesurfing is not as hard as it looks. Don’t be disheartened!

5- PROTECT YOUR TIME MACHINE

Your camera is your time machine, respect it, protect it. As simple and silly as that. You must use water proof case for your gear. I actually didn't practice this preaching but getting away with jumping in water with my gear will never happen again!

6- EXTREME SPORT = EXTREME EFFORT

Photographing an extreme sport was a very enlightening and physically challenging to jump in and out trying to avoid getting hit by the surf board while getting closer and closer for a special second in time, that can't be missed or fill the frame with action instead of shooting from afar.