Photographing (and eating really good) food...

A recent job had me photographing the entire sushi menu for a Thai restaurant here in southern Maine.

Lucky Me.


Several things I liked about it - the setup was simple, the food itself was very visually pleasing, and I got to sample every single dish we shot.

I used two Nikon SB800's (set to manual with power ranging between 1/16 - 1/64 power) triggered by Pocket Wizards, two softboxes, a GamiLight Square 43 and a Photoflex LiteDome.

Throw in a couple "A" clamps and bounce cards and the setup is complete. (Just in case you are interested you can get the Photoflex LiteDome XS Kit here)

Here are two pictures of the setup.

The first without any text so that it is easier to view:

The second with text identifying all of the components used for the shoot:

The hardest thing about the shoot was determining the most complimentary angle at which to shoot the food, the second was actually fitting into my van when it was all done.

Lastly, if you live in the area (or are traveling to it) the restaurant is Thai Me, great food and even better people.

I would love to see you on May 3rd...

On Thursday May 3rd architectural and corporate portrait photographer Irvin Serrano will be giving a talk/presentation at the next meeting of the Maine Photographers Coalition.

Irvin will be speaking to the group about shooting commercial work from concept to completion.

He will explain how he conceives a shot based on what the client wanted, talk a bit about the setup and post processing needed to achieve the finished product. Irvin will finish up by talking about the things that need to be considered when pricing a commercial job.

The evening will start at 7:30 and be hosted at the studio of Stacey Kane, at 134 Black Point Rd in Scarborough (Maine).

All are welcome and you don't need to be a member of the coalition to attend. It's a great opportunity to make new (photography) friends and "talk shop".

You can get more details, signup for Irvin's talk, along with a presentation by Pinhole Pro by following this link.

I hope to see you there.

Suggestion from a reader...

I am always asking for input, feedback, and suggestions from you, the good folks who make this blog what it is and I recently received an email that I was at first reluctant to consider.

A reader suggested that I be interviewed on the podcast, now my first reaction was "no way". First, I am just not that interesting and second, didn't want to come off as arrogant or full of myself. Because I am neither, really.

But then I thought what the heck, I would throw it out there and let you decide.

So if you think it's something that could prove interesting send me an email with your question (and you can ask more than one).

We'll use your questions as the framework for the interview and you can ask anything you want, really, anything you would like to hear me answer (well, just not that thing from freshman year in collage, but anything else).


And if I get enough questions, I will have someone interview me for the podcast and you all can have a good laugh.

Okay, I am bracing myself, start sending your questions.

One last Wedding Wednesday...

Wedding Wednesday is not leaving forever... just for now.

I want to close it out with some of my personal favorite images, the first one in the list goes back to the very first wedding I ever shot.

And I was going to explain why I selected the images I did but decided against it, to let each image stand on its own (visual) merit.

The two things I will say is the images of the boats is one of my favorites of all time and was shot while photographing a wedding here in Maine, which is why it was included.

The other thing I want to say about shooting a wedding is be prepared, there will be the gentle moments of a drop of water in the middle craziness that will capture your attention, there will be fun of the wedding party acting foolish, there will be the quiet times of just the bride and groom, you will share the special time between two brothers that will never be again, there will be the unexpected laughter, and you never know, one day, while you are driving with the groom to the church you might.... you just might.... see Elvis!

Podcast Episode 6 - An interview with Photographer and social media expert Wendy Roe...

Byron Roe Photography

We just published episode 6 of The Photography Podcast, feel free to head over and give it a listen.

Here are our show notes for that episode.

This week we have the pleasure of talking to Wendy Roe, a wedding photographer and Social media expert. Before we talked to Wendy we shared two new iPad apps that we really liked, Professional Image Maker and Photographers i.

We also gave a BIG THANK YOU to all of our listeners and readers who have been kind enough to use our affiliate links to buy their gear, and because of that you are helping to feed the hungry here in southern Maine and we recently sent a check to Operation Smile that will fully cover the cost of
surgery for a child in desperate need of help.

Byron Roe Photography

Okay, now on to Wendy. Our conversation with her is a wrap-up from the series she was kind enough to write for Weekly Photo Tips, and just in case you missed them, here are the first 4 posts:

1. Naming and Branding Your Images

2. Web Marketing Workflow Guide to An Individual WordPress Blog Post

3. The Protocol To Announcing and Releasing on Facebook

4. Adopt and Promote Pinterest Pinning

Byron Roe Photography

And we finish the series by discussing "Link Building Through Directories and Local Search Engines".

Wendy and her husband Byron are (stunning) wedding photographers out of Bend Oregon and you will want to check out the images on their website and their blog.

 If you are looking for some one on one consulting to help raise your social media game you can visit Wendy here.

Thanks to Wendy for all she has done for us and thank you for taking the time to come by and listen to us chat.

Thank you to Adorama for sponsoring this podcast.

 And last, but certainly not least, something that needs to be said every episode, a BIG thank you to Steve over at Home Recording Weekly for mixing this show, taking a bucket full of sound files and turning them into this podcast.

Please feel free to download the show for later listening.

Photoshop CS6 and the new Nikon D3200...

If you have some money just burning a hole in your pocket, I think I can help you out.

You can pre-order two new products that will (very) soon be on the shelf. First up is the latest version of Photoshop, Photoshop CS6, if you haven't played with it yet you can grab the beta version here.

 If you just can't wait, you can pre-order it right here.

The other is the latest offering from Nikon, it's the D3200 and is a great camera for under $700, which you can get it in the standard black, but is also available and a VERY flashy red.

Here are just a few of the key features:

• 24MP DX CMOS sensor

• ISO range 100-6400, expandable to 12,800 Expeed 3 image processing engine 3-inch, 921k LCD monitor 1080p HD video
• 24 or 30 fps Stereo microphone jack

• 4 frames per second burst mode

• 11-point AF system • Guide Mode

• Six Scene Modes (Portrait, Landscape, Child, Sports, Close-Up, Night Portrait) Compatible with Nikon FX-format lenses, Speedlight system

More top rankings for the Nikon D800...

All too often we hear the hype about product is "the best ever" and then when it finally hits the hands of consumers we learn otherwise.

This does not seem to be true for the new Nikon D800, not only is it living up to the hype, in real life testing it is surpassing expectations.

In this case it beat a $50,000 medium format camera, the Phase One IQ180.

You can read all the details over at FStoppers and DxOMark.

And while we are on the subject of the D800, we are still looking for your questions.

We got a great response since we first asked for questions and won't be publishing our review for a few more weeks, so if you have a question or are curious about something the D800 can or cannot do please email it ti us and we will include it as part of our "Readers Review" of the D800.

A news worthy reader image...

It's not often (ever actually) that I go to our Flickr group and see relevant, news worthy images posted there... until today.

But let me backup just a bit.

Last night I was watching the national news (which I tend to do less and less as it's just too darn frustrating) and they showed video of the space shuttle piggy backed on a 747 and it was on it's last flight, cruising by many of the important landmarks in Washington DC.

Fast forward to this morning, and I am checking out the most recent images posted on our Flickr group and low and behold, a shot taken yesterday of the space shuttle as it buzzed DC.

That was pretty cool.

Thanks Chance for posting the image for our group to see and folks, be sure to check out his Flickr photostream right here.

The temptation was just too much...

I have been going back and forth about whether or not to buy a GoPro HD video camera, thinking about all the cool things that I could do with it.

Well, the latest sale was too much to resist, it pushed me (way) off the fence, and now I am waiting for that oh so familiar sound of the UPS truck to pull in front of my house.

If you have considered what your life might be like with a GoPro HD video camera go check out this price (yes, it comes with free shipping too).

And if you haven't thought about buying one, watch the video below and you will, the quality of the video that comes out of this little thing is simply stunning.

If this video isn't enough, go checkout their YouTube channel and be prepared to be amazed.

A readers book review...

A few weeks ago we picked readers to do reviews of few of the many books we get sent to us. Well, the first person up to bat is Maureen Hamilton-Graessley and she is reviewing "Wildlife Photography From Snapshots to Great Shots", by Laurie Excell.

Take it away Maureen...

As a photographer of immobile subjects and an outdoor enthusiast, I had oddly never considered combining the two in the form of wildlife photography. I had always assumed wildlife photography was beyond my talent and finances. "Wildlife Photography From Snapshots to Great Shots", by Laurie Excell, is remarkably inspirational in an approachable and accessible manner!

This enjoyable book is full of wisdom for beginning through expert photographers. I had many ‘ah-ha’ moments while reading the book. For example, the equipment selection chapter presents pluses and minuses over a range of options to suit different reader goals. I would have overlooked some considerations, like lens minimum focus distance, resulting in a costly lesson.

Other new insights for me were how filters affect creative processes like panning, light direction for wildlife, how to approach different animals, and others too numerous to list. As with most good photography books, I do recommend beginning level photographers read through the book, and then read it again in order to cement concepts discussed early in the book. The author’s graciously shared insights will save the reader time and capital.

For the more experienced photographer, familiar topics are discussed in light of (get it?) the author’s experience in wildlife photography. Whether raw vs. jpg, focus configuration, or color space; even the most experienced reader can be inspired to try something new or adjust their work process to suit the goal at hand.

The author’s style is approachable and the writing concise. The Tips and Notes are sage and well handled editorially. There is good use of photos and tables to convey information; important considering the audience! The Chapter Assignments add a coursework component, with highly logical and applicable exercises to improve any level of photographer’s journey.

The author discusses opportunities for the reader to approach wildlife photography in every day life. Wouldn’t most photographs look better with a well-captured live subject? "Wildlife Photography From Snapshots to Great Shots" provides wisdom and insight that is easy to digest, inspiring the reader to approach wildlife photography in an educated and thoughtful manner.

Maureen Hamilton-Graessley started her photography business in 2009 and focused on real estate photography. Since relocating to a new state, she is adjusting her business to meet the local business climate. Ever-changing, she is enjoying the exploration of different photography genres and the new area's beautiful photographic opportunities.

Thank you Maureen for taking the time to do this review, and folks, please take the time to visit her site.

Photography from one of our readers...

Here is the work of another of our readers and most active Flickr contributors, you will find him on Flickr under the name "Zero CEM".

You can see more of his work on our Flickr stream, his stream, or his blog.

You might want to head over to his blog as he is pretty excited about being published recently for the first time and would likely be even more stoked if you went over and checked it out.

So I guess this makes for his second time being published in a very short period of time.

We will be showing more work from you our readers next week, so be sure to check it out.

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One half million is a lot...

Last night the odometer on our YouTube channel rolled past one half a million views... and it's all your fault.


Every time we hit a milestone I think about how lucky we are to have the readers/viewers that we do.

Thank you for making us what we are.

It's a children's "Wedding Wednesday"...

When it comes to children in (or at) weddings there is just one piece of advice I have, capture them in their natural environment.

If it's a boy chances are very good he is running (or falling), and for a girl, well... you will find her twirling with other little girls.

Don't make eye contact with them, and for god sake DO NOT try and pose them.

It's okay to photograph them interacting with others (good), but don't interact with them yourself (very bad).


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