Tuesday, July 31, 2007

07/31/07: Sale on Mike Colon DVD's!

Super talented wedding photographer Mike Colon is having a sale this week on his DVD sets. His "Reaching the High-end Bride" DVD, regularly $249, is on sale for $129 and his "The Colon Experience: 4 Day Intensive" DVD, regularly $650 is on sale for $279. For an even greater savings you can buy both for $399 -- a FIVE HUNDRED dollar savings! I own both DVDs and I was lucky enough to have some of my work featured in the Colon Experience DVD as I was a student in his class earlier this year. Mike's business advice is just as good as his shooting tips. If you ever have the chance to see him work...you'll learn a LOT!
Click here to go to Mike's web-site for more information or to order one or both DVD sets.

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Monday, July 30, 2007

07/30/07: Vacation pictures...

You never know where you're gonna get a fun vacation picture. And that's the beauty of digital...you can keep shooting without spending the kind of money you used to have to in the film / develop / print days.

We just got back home today from a long weekend in Michigan and Wisconsin (we basically drove all the way around Lake Michigan!). On Saturday we took a "fast-moving" ferry from Mackinaw City to Mackinac Island (yes, they are spelled differently). The ferry probably had 150 passengers, I'm guessing, and the ride was only 2-3 miles (guessing again). I couldn't resist going to the back of the ferry where you could stand on the outside deck of the boat. It was very windy back there -- but I wanted to get some pictures without the impediment of the boat windows. I took this shot (below) of a person sticking their hand out of one of the windows -- I don't know -- it's just a fun picture that I like. :)


Saturday, July 28, 2007

07/28/07: Sometimes you just gotta take shots like this...

I know...it's a bumper sticker on a bicycle...but it made me take notice (enough to snap a pic...yeah, it doesn't take much to amuse me)...


Friday, July 27, 2007

07/27/07: Quote of the day...

"The photographer begins to feel big and bloated and so big he can't walk through one of these doors because he gets a good byline; he gets notices all over the world and so forth; but they're really -- the important people are the people he photographs. They are what make him."

--Gordon Parks


Thursday, July 26, 2007

07/26/07: Lookout for wayward sand!

We're on vacation in Michigan this week. Although I take GREAT care to make sure I don't expose my cameras / lenses to the elements when visiting a beach (not changing lenses at the beach, carry a rocket blower with me, etc.)...I did NOT expect my three year old son to sneak up behind me with a handful of sand as I was shooting a portrait of his sister. Fortunately I'm (still) a pretty big guy so my back blocked almost all of the sand (I still have some in my ears!)...but I learned my lesson today...as I do every day with my youngest son around!

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Wednesday, July 25, 2007

07/25/07: Back-up your critical files NIGHTLY!!

Today I'm sad to report that I had a 160 GB hard drive crash. 99% of the files were backed up...the 1% that was were PSD files from a project I just completed. Shame on me for not immediately backing them up. Just because the drive was less than 3 months old doesn't mean it wasn't safe (fortunately it's under warranty). It's just a bummer that I have to re-do about 4 hours worth of work to recreate the PSD files I lost. I'm going to attempt some file recovery software...he-he-he..."when I have time"...so I'll keep you posted.

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Saturday, July 21, 2007

07/21/07: "No Lifeguard on Duty" Exhibit

Many photographers are drawn to things unusual...to things "off the beaten path." My mom lives in Dallas and she tipped me off to an exhibition of photographs by J. Bennett Fitts called "No Lifeguard on Duty" currently on display at the Holly Johnson Gallery in Dallas.

"No Lifeguard on Duty" focuses on empty swimming pools at abandoned motels throughout the U.S. The collection of images on display 40 by 50 inch color prints with muted tones -- Fitts shot the images primarly on overcast days, or at dawn or dusk. According to a review in the Dallas Morning News, Fitts has "an eye for forlorn aspects of the American dream and has the technical skills to realize the vision in these very accomplished prints."
To see some of the images from the exhibit, check out J. Bennett Fitts web-site.

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Friday, July 20, 2007

07/20/07: Quotes of the day...

'Tis the vacation season, so here are two quotes related to photography and travel. Happy trails!

"Basically, I love photography - and travel. You could say I travel to take photographs and take photographs to travel."
-- Rick Sammon

"No place is boring, if you've had a good night's sleep and have a pocket full of unexposed film."
-- Robert Adams

*Ed Note:
I suppose we could ammend Adams' quote to state "and a pocket full of 8 gigabyte compact flash cards." :-)


Saturday, July 14, 2007

07/14/07: Photosynth - Update

We here at Daily Photo Tips first told you about Photosynth -- the revolutionary imaging software being developed by LiveLabs at Microsoft -- almost one year ago (see this post).

Here is an updated presentation on Photosynth featured on Ted.com -- a cool technology sharing web-site. So, while our good friends David Jay and Gary Fong are just now mentioning Photosynth on their blogs, remember that we talked about it LAST AUGUST! :)

(But, we still love you Gary and DJ...)

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Friday, July 13, 2007

07/13/07: Quote of the day...

Here's one for new professional photographers and aspiring professional photographers...

"In the near future, the artist-photographer will disappear if we don't charge more and more to compensate ourselves for our experience, time, investment, and ideas. We have to demonstrate to the public that our way of doing images is different, requiring the sensitivity of a master photographer to capture the real essence of a portrait, which is the emotion."

-- Hector H. Herrera


Thursday, July 12, 2007

07/12/07: "The Business of Portrait Photography"

My July book recommendation is The Business of Portrait Photography by Tom McDonald. I've owned this book for a couple of years -- it was published in 2002 -- however, since the book concentrates on the business side of shooting portraits, most of the information applies to both film and digital shooting.

One thing I really like about this book is the profile section -- featuring over two dozen successful portrait photographers. Each photographer featured in the profile section (including David Ziser, Beverly and Tim Walden, David Smith, Michael Taylor, Alvin Gee, Charlie Lim, and others) shares secrets on what has made their careers successful and recommendations to photographers interested in starting or expanding their portrait business.


Wednesday, July 11, 2007

07/11/07: Aquatic Inspirations Digital Photo Contest

Ever taken a cool underwater picture? Ever wanted to?

Check out the Outdoor Photography magazine and the Professional Association of Diving Instructors (PADI) "Aquatic Inspirations" digital photo contest.

There are two categories -- digital SLR and digital point and shoot. The cost is $5 for up to two images submitted, and no limit on the number of images you can submit. All of the contest entry fees will be donated to conservation efforts thru the Project AWARE foundation. Entry deadline is October 31st, 2007. Online voting for the people's choice category begins November 1st. Grand prize is a 7 day trip to the Grand Cayman Islands. Best of DSLR and best of point and shoot category winners each receive a $2,000 gift certificate to Sea & Sea -- an underwater imaging products company. For more information and to access the complete rules, click here.

Hmmm...I'm wondering if "Trash the Dress" session photos (taken in water) are eligible? LOL


Tuesday, July 10, 2007

07/10/07: Scott Kelby's blog -- bookmark it!

I'm kind of embarassed that it took me so long to find...but here is photoshop guru Scott Kelby's blog. (Yeah, I find his blog just in time for him to go on vacation for a few weeks! Leave it to me... LOL)


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Monday, July 09, 2007

07/09/07: Another great free tutorial video...

Here is a link to another great video by Mark Wallace of Snapfactory.com.


In this video Mark covers shutter sync and controlling ambient light exposure when using a flash.

Keep up the great work Mark!


Saturday, July 07, 2007

07/07/07: Happy 7-7-7 Day!

If you are shooting a wedding today (like I am...and tens of thousands of other photographers are), be sure to get some calendar pictures if you can...and as many images of 7's as you can!

"Good luck!" :)

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Friday, July 06, 2007

07/06/07: Quote of the day...

For the past year or so, I've used Fridays as the "quote of the day" on Daily Photo Tips. The quotes have run the gamut -- from technical to inspirational, from humorous to serious -- and today I felt like using a few quotes from master painter Claude Monet.

Though photography, in contrast to most other forms of creative expression, is a subtractive form of art (meaning that while a painter begins with a blank canvas and adds color and form to that blank canvas, the photographer begins with an entire scene and subtracts everything except what he or she feels is necessary in an image)...we can still learn how to see things as additive artists see them.

Here are some quotes from Monet...

"For me, a landscape does not exist in its own right, since its appearance changes at every moment; but the surrounding atmosphere brings it to life - the light and the air which vary continually. For me, it is only the surrounding atmosphere which gives subjects their true value."

"No one is an artist unless he carries his picture in his head before painting it, and is sure of his method and composition."

"Everyone discusses my art and pretends to understand, as if it were necessary to understand, when it is simply necessary to love."

"I am following Nature without being able to grasp her, I perhaps owe having become a painter to flowers."

"Color is my day-long obsession, joy and torment."

-- Claude Monet


Thursday, July 05, 2007

07/05/07: Snapfactory.com tutorial on creative studio lighting...

So happy it's Thursday! Today I came across a very slick (free!) tutorial video by Mark Wallace at Snapfactory.com (in association with Studiolighting.net). Check it out...

Be sure to check out the workshops offered by Snapfactory.com.

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Tuesday, July 03, 2007

07/03/07: Nature Photo Contest - National Parks

The U.S. National Parks Service have teamed up with Ford and the National Parks Foundation to offer a nature photo contest where you could have your winning image on the 2009 Federal Recreation Lands pass. The grand prize winner will also receive a 2008 Ford Escape hybrid vehicle. Click here or go to http://www.sharetheexperience.org/ for more information. You can also view some of the images that have been submitted already.

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Monday, July 02, 2007

07/02/07: Great Source for Backdrops and Props

Denny Manufacturing is one of the leading providers of studio backdrops and props for professional photography studios. Their selection is phenomenal and pricing is very competitive. You can request a free catalog (or download a PDF version) from the Denny Manufacturing web-site. Be sure you told them you heard about them on Daily Photo Tips!

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Sunday, July 01, 2007

07/01/07: Popular Photography "Mentor Series" Workshops...

I love landscape and nature photography. My retirement dreams involve moving to Montana and discovering as much of that beautiful state as I can...thru the camera eye!

Popular Photography, in association with Nikon, sponsors a number of cool location workshops (including one in Montana!) as part of their Mentor Series of workshops. For those with big budgets, check out the Norway / Iceland treks...for those with smaller budgets (but unlimited sense of photographic adventure none-the-less), check out the Charleston trek.

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