Sunday, March 29, 2009

A foggy spring day in Maine...

Saturday was a pretty foggy day here in Maine and hopefully the images below will do it some justice.

The sun is just starting to nudge against the horizon as I write this and today looks like more of the same, it's time to reformat my cards, grab another cup of coffee, and head back out.

Click on any of the images to view larger in a new window.








Thursday, March 26, 2009

Great memory card sale part II!....

Adorama is having another great sale on memory cards, not only are the prices outstanding, they will ship them to you for free as well!

SanDisk 4 GB Extreme III Compact Flash - 1 $24.95 (after rebate)

SanDisk 4 GB Extreme III Compact Flash - 3 pk $33 (after rebate)

SanDisk 8 GB Extreme III Compact Flash - 1 $39.95 (after rebate)

SanDisk 8 GB Extreme III Compact Flash - 3 pk $66 (after rebate)

SanDisk 4 GB Extreme III Secure Digital (SDHC) - 1 $24.95 (after rebate)

SanDisk 4 GB Extreme III Secure Digital (SDHC) - 3 pk $24 (after rebate)

SanDisk 8 GB Extreme III Secure Digital (SDHC) - 1 $34.95 (after rebate)

SanDisk 8 GB Extreme III Secure Digital (SDHC) - 3 pk $57 (after rebate)

Yes, you read that correctly, it's actually less expensive (final cost) to buy three 4 GB SDHC cards than it is to buy one, go figure.

The rebate form is available for download here.

Canon Blogger has featured a Nikon shooter!...

Me!

;)

Jason Anderson of Canon Blogger was kind enough to feature me on todays "Thursday Thoughts".

Jason is a great resource for anyone interested in photography, his blog is extremely informative and regularly features thoughtfully prepared tips and tutorials.

You should give Canon Blogger a well deserved spot in your favorites.

Thanks Jason for making me look better than I am.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Winter images from one of our readers...

Mark Pellegrino was kind enough to share some of his recent winter images with us (and you).

From Mark:

"I was just checking out some of your cool winter photos and thought I would share some I took a few weeks ago in the Adirondacks at a Carl Heilman workshop. We received about 10 inches of snow that day and conditions were blinding. One of the exercises was to just stand on the deck of the house and see what we could come up with.

We experimented with a technique where we used a long shutter speed (1/3s) and held the shot by hand for the first 2/3rds of the shot and then droping the camera down towards the snow for the final 1/3 of the shot. The effect can be seen in the pictures. It brings the snow up into the trees almost creating a snowy-mist and blurring portions of the picture.

Credit to Carl Heilman for showing me this. It creates a pretty cool, almost oil painting effect with the snow and the trees. The point is, no matter how bad the light and the weather is, if you are creative you can come up with something interesting so the day isn't a waste."

Nice work Mark, and thanks for sharing. You can check his previous work posted on this blog, and be sure to check out his website.

If you have images you would like to share on this blog (winter or otherwise) feel free to drop us an email.

Click on any image to view a larger version in a new window.



Sunday, March 22, 2009

5 SanDisk Extreme III 2 GB cards for $49!...

Yup, you can get a 5 pack of SanDisk 2 GB Extreme III memory cards for just $49.95 and the shipping is free!

Adorama is offering this sale in two flavors, compact flash or secure digital (SD) cards.

The 5 pack of SanDisk Extreme III compact flash cards are here and the 5 pack of SanDisk Extreme III Secure Digital (SD) Memory Cards are here.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Stock photographer extraordinaire...

How many of your photography friends have said "you can't make any money in stock photography"?

Obviously they forgot to tell Rich Legg.

I recently listened to an interview Rich did over at StudioLighting.net, I was struck by his willingness to share what he has learned and that "there is money in them thar stock photos".

Rich talks about how his relationship with iStock Photo started, what worked for him, what didn't, and laid out for listeners everything they need to know if they too wanted to venture into the world of stock photography.

I also learned that he is waaaaaay more organized than I am, anyone who keeps a spreadsheet of all his iStock images to track how many times they are downloaded and how much revenue each image generates make mes look like an unorganized buffoon.

Wait, I am an unorganized buffoon.

And if you stop by his blog, Rich keeps on sharing. You can see what Rich is doing, how he is doing it, and why it is working.

That is one of the things I loved most when I first got into photography, those who are successful are often willing to share the secrets of their success and Rich Legg certainly embodies that.

For those of you who look down your nose at stock photography, you need to change the angle of your head, Rich is living the dream that every photographer has, he's busy, his shoots a ton, he's making money, and most important - he's seems to be having a whole lot of fun.

And isn't that what it's all about?

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Now, for something completely different...

I was waundering aimlessly through the internet (also called surfing) and came upon Amanda's blog "Chaos, Laughter, and Love", and when I saw this sticker it took me a minute to "get it", but once I did I laughed out loud.

;)

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Some very nice speedlight work...

One of the cool things about writing this blog is that other photographers are so willing to share their beautiful work.

As did photographer Tohar Sade from Israel.

These images were shot on a cliff about 100 feet above sea level just outside Tel- Aviv. The shoot was set at the edge of the cliff just above the beach, Tohar was lying on the ground about 3 feet in front of his model (and dancer). On the count of three his model would start doing her thing as Tohar did his best to capture the movements of the dancer as she elevated above the sunset.

Tohar used a Canon EOS-1Ds Mark II with a Canon 16-35mm f/2.8L II USM & on camera Speedlight 580EX flash. Here are the particulars: F-stop @ 10, shutter @ 250, iso @ 320, lens @ 16mm, and shooting RAW. The flash mode was set to E-TTL @ 60 degree facing forward with catch light panel extended up.

Be sure to to visit Tohar Photography and look at more of his work.

If you would like to share your work with us, just drop me an email.

Click on any image to view larger and in a new window.



Sunday, March 15, 2009

Good people doing great things...

Just one more post on this subject.

If you are looking for a way to help let me throw out a couple resources.

Lending A Helping Hand - John Fitzpatrick has helped to organize volunteers that donated there services for couples who can't afford a photographer to capture their special day. Drop John an email if you would like to help.

Flashes of Hope is a non-profit organization dedicated to creating uplifting portraits of children fighting cancer and other life threatening illnesses. The portraits help children feel better about their changing appearance by celebrating it. For families of terminally ill children, it's especially important to have a portrait that preserves forever the beauty, grace and dignity of their child.

Another organization mentioned in a previous post is Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep with the mission of gently providing a helping hand and a healing heart for families overcome by grief and pain because of the loss of their baby.

And lastly, I would like to recognize two friends doing wonderful work:

1. Scott Kelby has raised a bunch of money to help build an orphanage in Kenya.

2. Stacey Kane has joined the folks at Operation Smile to help change the lives of children with cleft lips and palets.


Saturday, March 14, 2009

Kevin Kubota "Paying it Forward" in Rwanda...

Keeping with yesterdays "Pay it Forward" theme, I wanted to share with you Kevin Kubota's trip to Rwanda in 2008.

You can view the gallery of images here.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Let's Pay it forward...

I am sure most of you are familiar with the term "Pay it Forward", and I am proud to say that many of the photographers I know (and know of) do just that.

One of my favorite ways to help is with animal photography, there is not a shelter around that can't use the services of a photographer to capture the images of the dogs and cat looking for homes, and it can be your picture that motivates someone to adopt. Many shelters sell calendars as their fundraiser and they can't do it without a photographer.

The hardest was working with "Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep", providing photographic services for families who suffer the loss of a child. About a month after shooting a session for a family that lost their daughter hours after her birth I received a phone call from the dad thanking me for the images and slideshow I had done for them. I finally got the nerve to ask the question "what are you going to do with the slideshow?". His answer drove home the importance of what I had done, "We watched the slideshow everyday for the first week or so, it helped us mourn, and we'll watch the slideshow every year on her birthday to remember and to celebrate her". A year later, on her birthday, I got another thank you phone call.

My latest project is doing portraiture for children with cancer who have lost their hair because of chemo and may not feel as beautiful as they truly are.

I don't tell you these things to impress you, these are things I rarely talk about (and am kinda embarrassed doing so now), but how I feel is not nearly as important as possibly motivating others into action, or to give ideas to those who have been wondering what they can do to help.

One last thought, many photographers who are fortunate enough to be busy are taking a percentage of print sales, session fees, or booked weddings and donating it to organizations that are in the trenches doing great work, like Feed the Children or Operation Smile.

Your camera has the ability to change a life forever, and the life you change may be your own.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Lexar 8 GB Memory Card for $14.95...

Adorama has a great deal on Lexar 8 GB Secure Digital High Capacity (SDHC) Memory Cards for only $14.95 with free shipping.

It is speed-rated as Class-2 with a minimum sustained write speed of 2MB/second with an erasure-prevention switch means that your data cannot be accidentally deleted or copied over.

These cards come with a five year warranty.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

The last of my winter images...

I went out Sunday to capture some images, it was a sunny day and I thought there might be the opportunity to get some white snow, dark shadow images that would work well as black and whites.

And didn't it snow the very next day, another eight inches of the white stuff.

So I have come to the conclusion that winter has some vanity issues, and the more I shoot the more she returns to show yet another side in an effort to have her picture taken.

I am done giving her my attention - it's not that I don't like seeing her, I just don't want to see her this much.

;)

So here are my last offerings of winter for this year.

Click on any image to view larger and in a new window.





Saturday, March 7, 2009

More FlashFlavor.com...

I know I just threw props out to these folks a month ago, but man, I have just spent the last hour and a half going over their work and it's freaking amazing!

Not only are the images outstanding, their use of flashes is unequaled. All done in the fast paced environment of a wedding and reception.

Once you understand light it is possible to deconstruct how they do things, but Sol Tamargo & Matt Adcock don't even make you think, they give you all of the particulars of the image. ISO, shutter speed, flash placement, light modifiers, whatever was done to create the image they share with us the readers.

I have a HUGE crush on them.

Maybe I shouldn't be writing blog posts after I've had a couple glasses of port.

;)

But seriously, looking at their work strips away the boundaries of what I thought was possible, and makes me realize there are no boundaries.

Go check out FlashFlavor.com and realize the possibilities.


Two more updates from Adobe...

Adobe released two mire updates this week, 1 for Photoshop and 1 for Camera RAW.

Photoshop 11.1 downloads - Windows here and MAC here.

Camera RAW 5.3 downloads - Windows here and MAC here.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Another cool Strobist idea...

But then again, does Strobist have ideas that aren't cool?

This was a pretty simple setup, three SB800's all set @ 1/128 power. Two were on light stands at ear level and about arms length from the subject. The third flash resting on the table with hands cupped around the head.

Image Name: "Daughter annoyed because she has to model again"
Image Location: Dining room table
Equipment Used: Nikon D300, 60mm lens, shot at 1/160 sec, f/7.1, iso 200
Post Production: None

All three SB800's were fired using PocketWizards.

When I do this again I will use another flash facing the backdrop with a red or blue gel to give the image more depth and separation from the background. I think using the colored gel would also make the image a bit more interesting.

Here is a link to the original Strobist post.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Today Adobe released Lightroom 2.3...

Today Adobe released Lightroom 2.3 update, which includes these enhancements:

• Additional camera support for the Nikon D3X and Olympus E-30

• Includes several corrections for issues introduced by previous Lightroom 2 releases

You can get the Windows version here, and the MAC version here.

Monday, March 2, 2009

Some images from Saturdays model shoot...



I recently bought a new (used) lens, a Nikon 28-70 lens and wanted to give it a thorough workout before I used it on an assignment.

On the job is not a good place to find out a lens is not as sharp as it should be, or has some other anomaly.

Just like any other lens purchase I make, my first stop was at Ken Rockwell's to see what he had to say about it. Ken puts more effort into his reviews than anyone else I know and I have not made a bad choice in glass since I found his site.

The lens passed with flying colors and the model was outstanding, could not ask for a better shoot.

Click on any image to view larger in a new window.



New feature on our blog, reader polls…

Starting this month (and on the first of each month to follow) we will be running polls, looking for your input.

This month we want to know what you shoot, RAW, jpg, or both.

So take a minute, look to the column on your right under “Reader Poll” and let us know what you shoot.

Thanks.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

It's like the train is coming right at you…

And you can’t get out of the way.

Here it is March 1st and winter should be winding down, instead I am sitting here watching the snow fall outside.

We are supposed to get a few inches today, and another 10-14 inches tomorrow!

It could be worse, I could be OUTSIDE watching it snow.

;)