Like many of us, I am on a budget. I want to save money and buy things that I perceive to be a good deal. As you are aware, there are third-party options for just about everything in dealing with our cameras. Some are absolutely worth it and some just don't make the cut. Here are a few products that I have found worth saving on and a few I have found that ended up wasting more money in the long run. Intervalometers. I have been shooting Canon most my career. Truthfully the Canon brand intervalometer used for timelapse and remote shooting is … [Read more...] about Are Generic Camera Products Worth it?
You might recognize the brand Case Logic because if youve ever been to almost any electronics store, you'll see their bags for computers, cell phones, & other gadgets on display. But Case Logic also makes camera bags. And theyre pretty serious about these bags. The Case Logic claim to fame is two-fold. One: The bags are very high quality for the money. Two: The bags have a plastic (water-resistant/water proof) bottom that is somewhat unique in the industry. They call that the DuraBase bottom. More on those points in a moment. I tried … [Read more...] about Case Logic KDB-101 Kontrast Pro-DSLR Backpack – Mini Review
You gotta join us live for our next Google+ Hangout, totally free of charge. Not only will you learn terrific techniques, but if you tune in live, you can be entered to win excellent prizes to help you in your work. (Note: MUST BE TUNED IN LIVE TO WIN). We'll be giving away a copy of the Adobe Creative Cloud Photographer's Plan... as well as Photomatix from HDRSoft. Plus you never know what else. We kick off Tuesday 8/25, 6:00pm Irish Standard Time, 1:00pm Eastern, 12:00pm Central, 11:00am Mountain, and 10:00am Pacific. 1:30pm in … [Read more...] about Join us for Our Next Lightroom Hangout on 8/25 and Win
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TD2D2oJOSrQ During my career in photography Ive met very few (if any) people whos rise to stardom has been more incredible than my pal Trey Ratcliffs rise. Hes a brilliant individual who has the very unique mixture of business acumen, artistic eye, critical thinking, encyclopedic/scientific knowledge and downright folksy friendly approach to helping photographers succeed. I was lucky enough to have a chance to teach with Trey in Tampa, FL. It was his first workshop ever. At the time, I think I learned as much … [Read more...] about Trey’s Photomatix Presets – Mini Review
This week's podcast is in our classic Question and Answer format. We gathered up your questions from blog posts and social media and got some straight answers. Photofocus editor sits down with columnist and Sony Artisan Brian Matiash. Get the show here or get it on iTunes Don't forget to post a review on iTunes. Your Questions Get Answers with Brian Matiash Brian is a photographer and a published writer. He is a regular contributor to Photoshop User Magazine as well as a new member of the Photofocus team. He's spoken at the … [Read more...] about Photofocus Podcast July 25, 2015 — Q&A with Brian Matiash
NOTE: I haven't tried the less-expensive standard version of this application. The pro version includes blending modes, the ability to bring color from an original image, plugin support, shortcuts, more powerful vignetting, better histograms and more. Much of the functionality of the app (and presets) appears to be available in the standard version so if you want to save money, check out that version instead. ____________________ I started with black and white photography back in the early 1970s. It was easier (and less expensive) to … [Read more...] about MacPhun Tonality Pro Mini Review
Stories from the set takes you behind the scenes with top photographers as they talk about the challenges it takes to get the shot. [youtube:http://youtu.be/bdBheOv8Vm4] Robert Vanelli sits down with pro photographer Vincent Versace to discuss his approach to lighting. Learn how ICE Lights were uses on a recent shoot. Vincent Versace is an internationally recognized pioneer in the art and science of digital photography. His passion for natural light photography is manifest not only in his work but also through his role as a creative … [Read more...] about Westcott Ice Lights Saved my Shoot – Vincent Versace | Stories from the Set
NOTE: This story was cross-posted at WeShootFuji.com I needed an affordable, reasonably large but reasonably lightweight camera backpack to take with me to Teton National Park. I used the Pelican 1510-004-110 Case with Padded Dividers, Black to get my gear on the plane, but its not a viable solution for trekking around a mountain range. So as is my habit, I used one solution to get my gear TO the field, and one solution while I am IN the field. I usually use the Tamrac 5588 Expedition 8x Photo/Laptop Backpack when I am driving to a location … [Read more...] about AmazonBasics DSLR and Laptop Backpack – Mini Review (Best Photo Bag Ever For The Money)
I was recently given the new LG G4 smartphone to try out by my friends at ThreeUK. Theres a lot I could write about the software, shape etcetera, but Im a phoneographer so lets get straight to the camera. Go Manual The camera is good on this phone but really comes into its own when you opt to switch to Manual mode. Here you can opt to change; White Balance Focal depth Exposure compensation ISO Shutter speed All pretty cool and opens up some great photographic opportunities, but what really got me excited was the option to shoot jpg or DNG … [Read more...] about Shooting Raw on a Smartphone with the LG G4
The Lensbaby Circular Fisheye 5.8mm f/3.5 Lens is the newest fisheye in the Lensbaby lineup. It fits most modern cameras, including my beloved Fuji X-T1. This is a speciality lens. Its not something youre going to use all day, every day. Its for those fun times when you just want to experiment. In my opinion, its not something youd use IN PLACE OF a traditional fisheye lens. Its something youd use IN ADDITION TO a traditional fisheye lens. At 5.8mm (times .5 on my Fujis APS-C camera) its EXTREMELY wide. In fact its more than 180 degrees. So … [Read more...] about Lensbaby Circular Fisheye 5.8mm f/3.5 Lens – First Look
This option is new to Lightroom CC, and Im still finding the right way to use it in my workflow. Basically, it gathers pictures together based on the faces it can recognize in the image. The more I think about it, the more I see some powerful uses for it. Enter the People view using the icon at the bottom of the Library screen (press T to show the tool bar) or by pressing the O key (P is already taken for flagging a picture as a pick). Lightroom begins automatically recognizing faces and stacking pictures together with the same faces; the same … [Read more...] about Organize Your Portraits and Group Shots: Using People View in Lightroom CC
The Olympus M.Zuiko ED 40-150mm f/2.8 Pro lens with its 1.4x teleconverter has helped me make a bunch of good pictures and allowed me to do a good job for my clients. Over the last few months, I've used it to shoot a variety of subjects from wild horses to aerial photos to portraits to college graduation. I'd like to show you how it performed for me, and make an argument for why you will never need to buy a $12,000 lens. Let's start with the horses. This Lens Will Tame Wild Horses The thing about these horses is they are fairly tame (people … [Read more...] about Super-Telephoto Killer: Olympus 40-150mm f/2.8 Pro Hands-on Review
I am no big fan of Google. So let me express that bias right away. Ever since Dr. Eric Schmidt (Ex-CEO of Google but still an advisor) said that peoples intellectual property was fair game if they put it on the Web, I sort of put Google on the non-plus list (pun intended.) I could write a book full of things Googles done to harm creatives, but I will instead focus on the new Google Photos (another pun - I know - I can't help myself.) Google Photos is a spin off from Google+. Despite the protestations to the contrary by the numerous … [Read more...] about Some Initial Thoughts On Google Photos
You gotta join us live for our next Google+ Hangout, totally free of charge. Not only will you learn terrific techniques, but if you tune in live, you can be entered to win excellent prizes to help you in your work. (Note: MUST BE TUNED IN LIVE TO WIN). We kick off Wednesday 5/27, 4:00pm Eastern, 3:00pm Central, 2:00pm Mountain, and 1:00pm Pacific. 4:30pm in Newfoundland. RSVP here and it'll show your local time. If you like shooting the same subjects in the same way that have been shot for a hundred years...then this hangout is not for … [Read more...] about Lightroom Hangout: Diving into Cinemagraphs with Rob Knight
I don't use neck straps, and I generally advise everyone against them. I think they're a poor design and dangerous to your body--with as much shooting as I do, carrying a camera was damaging my neck. You may have read my review of the Joby wrist strap when I said it's the only strap I'll use. Well, I've got to take those words back: the new Spider Pro Hand Strap is now with me all the time and it's truly the only strap I'll ever use. It's perfect because it's secure, and well designed. Safety First Neck straps let you keep a camera handy, but … [Read more...] about Spider Pro Hand Strap
We've all been there. Out in the middle of who knows where, setting up for a shot that absolutely requires the camera to be perfectly still. You reach into your camera bag to grab your remote cable release only to realize that it is sitting all comfy on your desk at home. Or worse, you don't even own a remote cable release. Now, you're playing into the risk of introducing micro shakes with your camera as you reach for and press the shutter button. If you're a Sony photographer, though, you're in luck thanks to the release of a new free app in … [Read more...] about A Closer Look at Sony’s New “Touchless Shutter” app
Not long ago, someone from Pixelist reached out to see if I would try out and review one of their products, a hand-painted oil painting created from one of my photos. I don't do a lot of reviews, but when I went to their website I have to say I was intrigued! What a unique way to "print" a photograph. So I said yes, and sent them a photo I took of my dog, Kodak. In about three weeks, I received an email from them saying that the painting was finished. They included a photo of it and asked if there was anything that needed to be changed or … [Read more...] about Review: Hand Painted Photos from Pixelist
A look at Noiseless Pro by Macphun a standalone application that helps you reduce color and luminance noise in your images, and process raw images! … [Read more...] about Noiseless Pro Review
_______________________ I recently had the pleasure of attending the Arizona Highways Photo Workshops "Horses & Cowboys" event in Tucson, AZ. AHPW is a 30-year-old non-profit that offers photography education for everyone from beginning shooters to advanced professionals. The Workshops tie to the famous Arizona Highways Magazine which recently celebrated its 90th anniversary. Few things in this world can last nearly a century and the way Arizona Highways Magazine has done it is simple. They have provided some of the best photography this … [Read more...] about Arizona Highways Photo Workshops – A Different Kind Of Workshop Experience
This morning Adobe announced a major update to Lightroom! The new version is called Lightroom CC, and is a part of the Creative Cloud. (For those of you not interested in using the Creative Cloud subscription service, it can still be downloaded as a standalone application, Lightroom 6.) The new update comes with some very much anticipated improvements, so let's take a look at some of the most impressive new feature's inside of Lightroom CC:HDR Merge Yes! Finally! We can merge HDR images inside of Lightroom! Photoshop is no longer a … [Read more...] about Say Hello to the NEW Adobe Lightroom CC!
As a long-time Aperture user, and one of the original proponents of Aperture, I was very disappointed when Apple pulled the plug. But I saw this coming a couple of years ago and already switched to Lightroom. That doesn't take the sting away. And when Apple announced that it had a new app to replace both iPhoto and Aperture, I had the slightest hope there might be something there for me and other serious photographers. My First Impressions I had beta access and frankly, my initial impressions were not good, but I held out hope that the final … [Read more...] about Why Apple’s New Photos App Is Not For Me
Super-sport motorcycles, computer tweaking, camera lenses and even camera memory. Ever since I was little, I was obsessed with speed and making things go faster. Famous video game character Sonic the Hedgehog appealed to me more than Mario did. Why? Because he was blazing fast! A Shootout Today, I get to pit out two of the fastest cards and card readers that specifically pair up with my weapon of choice - the Fujifilm X-T1. It's one of the few still cameras that is capable of using the speed of a UHS-II standard card at the moment, so if … [Read more...] about UHS-II SD-Card Speed Shootout – Memory for the Fujifilm X-T1
I know that some of you never use a tripod. I used to use a tripod almost 100% of the time. I admit that sometimes, shooting mirror-less (especially the Fuji X100T) I don't ALWAYS use a tripod. I usually feel guilty if I don't. Why? Because theres simply nothing that will give you a rock-steady shot like a tripod. You can get very close without one, but the tripod is often the difference between sharp enough and really sharp. It also gives you the benefit of offering you a chance to slow down and be more deliberate and contemplative in your … [Read more...] about Vanguard ABEO Pro 284 CT Carbon Fibre Tripod – Mini Review
Six years ago I started making pictures, and I dove right in planning to make a portrait business. The best thing I did was attend David Ziser's workshop where he taught me that shadow and light are the most important technical things to learn in photography. He showed image after image of stunning portraits, and they were almost all lit with the same modifier, and I bought one from him that night. Six years later, that Zumbrella is still my most profitable tool, and while it's seen better days physically, it's still the fastest and easiest way … [Read more...] about My Most Profitable Light Is Also My Cheapest
You gotta join us live for our next Google+ Hangout, totally free of charge. Not only will you learn terrific techniques, but if you tune in live, you can be entered to win excellent prizes to help you in your work. (Note: MUST BE TUNED IN LIVE TO WIN). We kick of Thursday 3/26, 1:00pm Eastern, 10:00am Pacific/ 1:00pm Eastern. RSVP here and it'll show your local time. Starting with downloading from a memory card all the way to publishing finished photographs on the interwebs, these experts will open your eyes to terrific techniques for making … [Read more...] about Lightroom Hangout: From Download to Mobile and Everywhere in Between: The Workflow Episode, with Vanelli and Nick Minore
The Challenge of Dynamic Range My next house I did end up photographing was a small townhouse. I think those are extra challenging to photograph as you are working to be creative in tiny places to get the entire room without too much distortion. A tripod is a must even when working in such a tiny space. I went to work and bracketed each room. The realtor sent me a text saying his clients were impressed and LOVED the pictures. I breathed a sigh of relief. After that praise I looked back through some photos and decided to play some more with … [Read more...] about What can Photomatix do for you?
I've got a bit more time on my hands these days, so I'm catching up on some new photography books. There's two I am currently reading that I'd like to share. "The Long Exposure - A Beginners Guide To Long Exposure Photography" by David Cleland and "The Complete Guide To Fujifilms X-T1" by Tony Phillips The Long Exposure - A Beginners Guide To Long Exposure Photography First up - Davids book This is an e-book that comes with some custom Lightroom presets that you can use to tweak your long exposure images. Its not a very detailed book since … [Read more...] about What’s In The Library? A Quick Look At Two Photo Books I’m Reading
If youre one of those folks who just needs to do some very minimal photo correction/editing, or you hate Adobe for charging you $10 a month for Photoshop/Lightroom, then there is at least one free, online photo editor you may want to take a look at. Polarr (https://v2.polarr.co) is a surprisingly robust, powerful and very easy-to-use photo editing tool that goes far beyond the normal online picture editor. It has sophisticated features that allow you to adjust color temperature, saturation, contrast, brightness, exposure, gamma, tone … [Read more...] about Polarr – Free Online Photo Editor – Mini Review
One of the best reasons to go to trade shows is to get your hands on new gear. I'm not talking about the latest camera or lens from Nikon or Canon--you can hold that and try it on at the camera store any time you want. No, the best gear to get your hands on is all the accessories that aren't out of box in camera stores. My favorite booth for great accessories at WPPI this year was Phottix, where I found the handiest accessory I've seen in a while. The Worst Thing That Can Happen Say you're photographing an eventa wedding reception, or maybe the … [Read more...] about One Must Have Accessory for Event Photographers
It isn't very often that I switch camera systems. Especially after I've spent more than $10,000 of my precious life-sustaining money on crap and gear combined with more time than a grad student would study just to learn how to use it all. My photography career changed ever since, um... I wanted it to change. Part of that change incorporated some interesting decisions that affected my gear choices. Weird right? --There's been a small update to the article regarding an error I was encountering while shooting in continuous high. See the end of … [Read more...] about I Made The Switch From 5D3 to X-T1- Here’s Why!