Photo taken from the crowd at a music festival. The large crowd is backlit by the streaming purple, pink and yellow lights illuminating the stage. A person in the crowd is holding up a glimmering disco ball.

Storytelling Through a Sustainable Lens With MPB

Black MPB logo.

Good for Creators and Good for the Planet

Your phone camera is nice and all, but let us not forget where we started—the trusty tripod, that pesky lens cap, the sound of a shutter click. There’s something special about trying to decide if the white is actually balanced, if that twist of the wrist really got your subject in focus, and that feeling you get when you know you got the shot. All while keeping one eye closed.

The only problem is, like cell phones, camera equipment ain’t cheap. We get it. And so do our friends at MPB, the online platform for photographers and videographers around the world to buy, sell and trade camera gear and equipment. Pretty ideal since dropping a couple grand on something you aren’t sure is going to be more than just a hobby or not can be a slippery slope. One that can sometimes and maybe more often than not end with the nagging reminder of having to constantly stare at it as it sits in the corner untouched. Something we’re pretty certain all of us have done at one point or another. We’re human, but buyer’s remorse is never fun.

With this in mind, MPB was founded on providing gear and equipment to anyone and everyone, whether it is or isn’t your first rodeo. Through trading and recirculation, MPB helps place passion at peoples’ fingertips, without the price tag.

Not to mention the fact that this cuts out a good amount of equipment that is thrown away, taking a sustainable approach to eliminate the need to purchase all that brand-spanking-new gear being produced all the time. Providing for more people, while keeping the size of their footprint small.

No matter the level of experience, MPB works to allow people from all walks of life opportunity and access to the digital storytelling world.

The Explorers Tour

From novice to expert, from night sky to food. MPB and Whalebone spent some time on location with a few photographers from different fields (which so happen to match with an upcoming issue theme of Whalebone Magazine) asking them about their journey and passion for storytelling. No matter the subject, MPB provides gear for creators of any kind, so we figured, why not send them each their dream gear and get their take on how the cameras provide convenience, quality, accessibility and sustainability. All at once.

Neil Schwartz

Music Photographer | @neilschwartzphoto

The Music Issue

Black and white portrait of Music Photographer Neil Schwartz wearing glasses and a short-sleeve collared shirt. He is smiling at the camera.

Combining his love of music with photography, what started with studying to become a music therapist ended with being a professional photographer in the music field working with local artists, music festivals and development companies in Tempe, Arizona. Now working with names like The Black Pumas, Maggie Rogers and more, he has been able to shoot some of his favorite artists with the goal to capture the emotion of the artist and the crowd.

What type of photography do you specialize in?

Live concert and artist promotion photography.

How long have you been doing it?

Since 2018.

How could MPB have helped you as a new photographer?

MPB is an amazing resource that allows new and experienced photographers to research and buy equipment from a trusted company. This allows photographers to save money on equipment and know that their gear will work properly.

Advice for anyone just getting started or thinking of picking up a camera:

JUST GO FOR IT. You do not need a fancy camera to take a good photo. Taking photographs is about
the user’s experience and one’s eye. Just pick up whatever you can, be it a phone, old film camera or digital camera and go out and take photos of what you want to capture. There are so many books and online resources that will push you in the right direction.

Dyutima Jha

Food Photographer | @dyutima_myfoodlens

The Pizza Issue

Portrait/head shot of Food Photographer Dyutima Jha taken from a sight upper angle. Dyutima is looking slightly up at the camera and smiling. She is wearing a black shirt and holding a black Nikon camera in her right hand.

Dyutima is an architect-turned-food-stylist, commercial and editorial food photographer, and the first South Asian woman to host a food photography podcast, My Food Lens. After 15 years as an architect designing healthcare facilities around the world, Dyutima found her passion in food styling and photography. Based in Singapore, she’s worked with several prestigious clients and her work has been featured in a range of food magazines.

What type of photography do you specialize in?

Food photography—photography that makes people hungry and salivate.

How long have you been doing it?

This is year five for me.

How could MPB have helped you as a new photographer?

Not many people know you can access camera or video equipment without having to go spend thousands of dollars on something new. Accessibility is so limited, but this makes it easy for newbies to get into it, without spending so much right up front.

Advice for anyone just getting started or thinking of picking up a camera:

Focus on the basics first. Pick one thing and focus on that—there’s no need to worry about composition or lighting, first get a grip on how to use manual mode. Once you have that down, then layer it with interesting subjects, composition or lighting.

Close up photo of small circular matza-like cracker appetizers sitting on a dark brick surface. Each cracker is a light golden brown and is artfully decorated with hummus, small sprigs of green thyme, dark blackish purple blackberries, and quarter slices of bright pinkish red figs.
Aerial photo of 3 white bowls of soup and two silver spoons sitting on a white-painted rustic wooden table with green stems of white flowers laying on it. The soup in each bowl is a bright green  and creamy with zig zagged slivers or zucchini in the middle, a few edamame beans, small, chopped white scallions, dark green herb leaves and a single white flower bloom.

Sean Parker

Landscape/Astrophotographer | @seanparkerphotography

The Slow Issue

Black and white portrait of Landscape/Astrophotographer Sean Parker standing outside. Sean is wearing a hiking backpack with a large black camera strapped onto the front across his chest. He is wearing glasses and a flannel.

A man of many talents, Sean specializes in landscape photography and timelapse cinematography. Based in Tucson, Arizona, he has quite the playground to capture the beauty of nature and night sky. An adventurer to say the least, Sean’s work from around the world has been recognized in commercials and publications internationally.

What type of photography do you specialize in?

I specialize in landscape photography and landscape astrophotography.

How long have you been doing it?

Since 2011.

How could MPB have helped you as a new photographer?

When I first started landscape astrophotography, the 5DMKII was the best at the time. I really wanted that camera but simply could not afford to buy a new one. I really wish I had MPB available at the time because I could’ve purchased a used one at a much more affordable price.

Advice for anyone just getting started or thinking of picking up a camera:

Find what YOU like to photograph…not what is trendy. Once you find that you will enjoy your photography a lot more. Be patient while finding this passion.

Panoramic photo taken on a calm lake of the bright green and yellow lights of the aurora borealis in the dark blue sky swirling of a large, pointed light brown rock formation in the distance.

Dean Blotto Gray

Winter Photographer | @deanblottogray

The Snow Issue

Photo of Winter Photographer Dean Blotto Gray holding his snow-covered camera up from behind some green spruce trees covered in large mounds of snow. Dean is wearing a black ski jacket covered in the white snow and some black ski goggles. He is smiling at the camera.
Photo by CirilliPhoto

Connection and creativity do a pretty good job of describing Dean in two words. Especially since he creates far more than just photography, but scrapbooks, abstract paintings and more. From snowboarding to skateboarding he captures moments in life that seem to go the fastest, giving us memories we can hold onto. Originally from the southwestern United States, he now calls the East Coast home, finding home wherever life takes him.

What type of photography do you specialize in?

During the winter season I document snowboarding, everything from film productions and contests to company advertising campaigns. During the summer I continue taking pictures of all things outdoor, cycling, skateboarding, nature and professional sports.

How long have you been doing it?

25 years.

How could MPB have helped you as a new photographer?

Access to camera gear that’s affordable for a new photographer, and the ability to trade in and trade up to new lenses and camera bodies

Advice for anyone just getting started or thinking of picking up a camera:

Shoot as much as possible with subject matter of all kinds. Experiment, take notes, don’t be afraid to try something new, learn how to use your equipment. Eventually your photo style will make itself known, along with your enthusiasm for what you really enjoy taking pictures of.

Black and white action shot of a person in snow gear holding the edge of a snow bank while flipping up side down in mid-air on a snowboard.
Black and white photo of a snowboarder sliding backwards down a large, long, silver pipe rail built into the surrounding white snowy hill. There is a large cluster of tall pine trees in the background.

Keep your eyes on as each photographer shows us a day in their life with MPB gear, and check out for yourself.