My New Pocket Guide

What makes photography so interesting is the constant learning process: new equipment, new techniques, new software. It can become overwhelming at some point. Well thankfully there are plenty of resources available to feed the mind and expand your knowledge. My latest read has quickly become my favorite, my new pocket guide so-to-speak. Joe McNally’s The Hot Shoe Diaries: Big Light from Small Flashes (Voices That Matter) is not only fun to read, as is Joe’s style, but it’s also a fantastic source to learn how to master the use of small lights. (more…)

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Fun With Green Screen

Digital photography has brought about a whole new way of experimenting with your images. If you really want to test your creative juices you have to try shooting on a green screen. This technique is the same one used in Hollywood and featured in most of today’s blockbuster movies and used daily on TV newscasts. Green screen, also known as chroma key is surprisingly easy and definitely fun. You’ll need a few items to get started. (more…)

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Photo labs

My how times have changed. I remember spending long nights in my darkroom processing black and white film and prints. I also remember making last minute runs to the color labs to drop off my E-6 and C-41, then patiently waiting to run back to pick-up my order, most times ripping open the boxes of slides or prints and looking through them right there as the cashier was running my credit card. Yeah – times have really changed. It’s amazing that not that long ago, we actually had patience. (more…)

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Two must haves”¦if your budget allows.

Having the opportunity to work with a great photographer like Joe McNally taught me a valuable lesson about photography, why do I own so much useless crap? There are many things on my photography wish list that I hope to purchase this year. The Canon 5D MKII, with the 580EX II Speedlite and ST-E2 Transmitter Kit (cue the Homer “Mmmmmmm donuts” sound effect) for one. (more…)

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Working for “The Man”

I’ll be the first to admit, I see photographers do shoots in exotic locations, shooting beautiful models or covering major sporting events and yes I get a little envious but there is something to be said for being a corporate photographer. First – the steady paycheck and benefits are nice, tuition reimbursement, paid time off is also nice and now and then an interesting assignment comes your way, like flying in a helicopter with the Army or freezing my butt off in the second largest wind tunnel in the country – NASA tops the list. But with all the nice things about being a corporate shooter there are as many downsides to this type of photography.
Where do I begin”¦. (more…)

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Santa Fe Workshop, Part 3

Location, location, location”¦ after a great first day in studio and a bombardment of lighting know-how from Joe it was time for us to go on location. Our class of fourteen was divided into four teams of three and a team of two. Tuesday’s location was a Masonic Temple in downtown Santa Fe, this place reminded me of the set of The Shining, a big kitchen, a ballroom and except for us, not a soul around, yet plenty of interesting places to shoot. Wednesday’s location was a beautiful bed & breakfast just outside of Santa Fe, located on an eleven-acre horse farm. As I took a brief break, I looked out over the farm and off in the distance was a wall of snow-capped mountains, just beautiful. (more…)

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The Santa Fe Workshop, Part 2

Well a sleepless night, coupled with a pounding headache (due to the altitude adjustment) had me worried that my first full day of the workshop would be a tough one, I was wrong. Luckily the course was structured in such a way that we spent our first day in studio, which was fine with me. Joe gave a lighting demonstration that solidified my opinion of why he is a lighting master.

Joe McNally in studio.
Joe McNally in studio.

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The Santa Fe Workshops, Part 1

Last year, my boss tells me that there is money in the budget for training, would I be interested in taking advantage of it? Let’s see, it took about 1/1000 of a second for me to answer – YES! So I immediately logged onto the Santa Fe Workshop web site to see when the next Joe McNally class was being held, the last week of February, perfect, I found my training! I’d like to start off by saying, it’s amazing that you can shoot professionally for almost thirty years and think you know it all, (more…)

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Why I do this…

As my alarm went off at 4:00 am – the first thought in my head was why do I do this? As I kissed my sleeping kids and wife good-bye so I could get to the airport, I wondered, why do I do this? I loaded my bags in my truck and headed to the airport, had the whole road to myself, still wondering why do I do this? Shared the airport shuttle with a couple heading to Utah for a week of skiing, they asked where I was headed, “Santa Fe, NM, skiing they asked? No photography workshop. So you’re a photographer? I am, Wow that must be a great job. It is.” With that, I started to realize why I do this. (more…)

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Piece of mind!

Every now and then a device comes along that makes you think, how did I ever live without this? How many of us would ever think of venturing on a long drive without our cell phones? For me, that device is my Epson P-5000. Two years ago, while transferring photos from my card, to my G5, the computer decided to “burp”, okay not a burp, it was more like a projectile vomit!epson_p_5000

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