Over the past few months I have immersed myself in photography podcasts. I’ve found them a great way to catch up on industry trends, get reviews on the latest camera gear, and find out what other photographers are shooting.
What I like to do is drop my favorite podcasts into my iPhone and listen to them while I commute to the studio or between shoots. With the iPhone, you can bump your podcasts up to play at 2x speed. Spoken word is easy to understand even at twice the speed — enabling you Type As out there to knock a podcast out in half the time.
Here are a few things I take into consideration when deciding whether to subscribe to a podcast:
- How often does the podcast update? (The more frequent, the better.)
- Is the content geared more toward a professional or prosumer audience? (I prefer the former.)
- Does the podcast field questions from listeners? (This can be good or bad, depending on the audience.)
- What is the format — roundtable discussion, one-on-one interview or monologue/rant? (I tend to prefer roundtables and interviews.)
In general, I seek out podcasts that deliver information and perspective beyond what most amateurs/prosumers want to hear. I get weary of hearing answers to questions like “Should I buy a Nikon or a Canon?” or “What lens should I buy to shoot sports?”
So, with that said, here (in no particular order) are six podcasts I enjoy and highly recommend:
1. Camera Dojo. I really dig this podcast. Hosted by Orange County photographer Kerry Garrison, it’s an interview-style show with interesting people talking about their work. Each podcast is about an hour, and it updates three to four times a month with new content. Camera Dojo also has a lot of information on its site about digital photography, with tutorials and forums in addition to the podcast.
2. The Candid Frame. What stands out about The Candid Frame, hosted by Ibarionex R. Perello, is that it focuses on what a photographer is working on and his or her process for doing the job. It’s an interview-style show, 45-60 minutes long, and it updates every two weeks.
3. Light Source. Hosts Bill Crawford and Ed Hidden throw out questions to photographer guests. The podcasts are about an hour long and update once a month. The site features studio lighting tips and gear reviews as well.
4. Pro Photo Show. Hosted by Gavin Seim, this roundtable-style podcast touches on several subjects in each podcast. Each episode is about two hours long — which can wear you down after a while. But it’s only updated once a month, so I just listen to it in manageable parts. I really enjoy roundtables like this, because you hear different viewpoints and lively debate on the latest gear and trends.
5. This Week in Photography. Hosted by a group led by Silicon Valley photographer Frederick Van Johnson, T.W.I.P. offers a roundtable discussion that records live and allows listeners to log in and send questions/comments while the show is recording. Podcasts are about 90 minutes long and update weekly.
6. Freelance Radio. Although this podcast doesn’t address photography issues specifically, it does offer insights on how to run a creative business. Topics like contracts, business plans, financial planning and the like are discussed. The roundtable discussion features four freelancers from across the country — John Brougher, Dickie Adams, Kristen Fischer and Von Glitschka. The Freelance Switch site also has lots of information about operating a creative business.
Some other podcasts I enjoy are New Media Photographer, Photofocus, and Typical Shutterbug. You can find their podcasts through iTunes or their Web sites.
I’m always on the lookout for new podcasts — so if there’s one you recommend that I didn’t include here, please tell me about it in comments or e-mail me at [email protected].