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Photofocus Episode 101

Host: Scott Bourne ( or

Show notes by Bruce Clarke ( or

Welcome to Episode Number 101 of Photofocus with Scott Bourne. Photofocus is the show devoted to discussing photography and answering your questions about anything photography related including gear, technique, locations, etc. Your questions will shape the direction of this show so be sure to send your questions to [email protected]. We will try to answer as many as we can but we get a lot of questions so we’ll try to take a collection of questions that represent a particular topic and present them together. This week, Scott shares his thoughts on the religion of low-light photography and answers some listener questions.

Discussion – The Religion of Low-Light Photography

There have been been many religions in photography. One of the more recent ones deals with low-light photography and how a particular camera performs in low-light. Scott loves to have good low-light performance in his camera but he doesn’t buy one just because of that feature because he doesn’t spend that much time shooting in low light. You don’t need to have the top of the line everything unless you can specify why you really need it. Scott thinks that many people today are just looking at low-light performance and forgetting about many of the other features when choosing a camera. One of the problems with religions is that it can go to extremes. So much so, that people are willing to write off an image before they’ve even seen it, just because it wasn’t shot using the latest and greatest equipment. If you get into a situation with low-light, you can always bring in light using reflectors or other lights.



Discussion – Recent Updates on the Photofocus Blog

Be sure to check out the blog for some recent posts about Aperture 4, Snapseed for the Mac, and some recent video posts on setting your White Balance in postand a time saving tip when working with Aperture. Many people ask Scott about about setting Custom White Balance in camera. If you are in the same lighting situation, Scott recommends setting your WB to a custom WB rather than Auto. On auto, you may find that your White Balance changes with every photo so if you set it to a custom WB, and the lighting doesn’t change, that will save you a lot of time in post production. If you still aren’t sure how to do it and you’d rather do it in post, check out Richard Harrington’s video on how to do it in post.

Another disturbing trend in photography that Scott has seen lately is with younger photographers constantly copying each other with the backlit image. Stop trying to be new and try to be you. Scott also recently switched things up in the studio and is now working off a 13″ MacBook Air with an SSD and finding that it works well. There was also a post on the site from Tamara Lackey and we have a post coming up soon from Catherine Hall. We also ran a poll recently about book publishing and we asked how many of our listeners were thinking of publishing a photo book and 2/3 of you indicated that you were thinking about it.

Listener Questions

This week we kick things off with a question about storing images outside of Aperture:

Question One – Aperture & iPhoto

Dave Calloway from Wisconsin writes: How do I store my images. Do I store them only in Aperture or do I put them somewhere else like iPhoto?

Scott: iPhoto does an auto-res thing to your photos that I don’t like so I tend to stay out of iPhoto and leave everything in Aperture. Make sure you are backing up your vault though and have it in a location where you can keep it off-site.

Question Two – Thoughts on DNG

We get a lot of questions about DNG and what I think about it?

Scott: DNG was a file format started by Adobe and it’s designed to be open-sourced but up until recently it hasn’t. I think once it’s open sourced then it has merit but one of the problems with it is that the camera manufacturers have to supply SDKs to Adobe so they can interlink with what’s going on. Manufacturers like Nikon are a little reluctant to cooperate with Adobe. They’ve gotten better but you may not get every feature in DNG that you’d get with .NEF or a .CR2 file format from Canon. I’m not a big believer in but one of the advantages is that you don’t have to worry about losing the sidecar file when you edit your images.

Wrap Up

We want themes and questions from you. Be sure to visit the blog at for articles, how-to’s, videos and more. E-mail us at [email protected]follow us on Twitter. Don’t just take pictures – make pictures.

Scott Bourne is at or or or

Show notes by Edmonton Wedding Photographers Bruce Clarke at or


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