Friday, October 31, 2008

Nice Interview

Today I'd just like to point you to a wonderful interview done by Crash Taylor (how cool is that name?) on on of my mentor's - David Ziser. Read the entire thing here, and then look around his site. It's very nice as well.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Really Nice Photoshop & Lightroom resources

Recently I've happened across a few resources that may be of interest. I linked one of them earlier:



  • To create The Full Montage, author Steve Caplin "has spent the last two years photographing, processing and preparing images" that work really well in image composites. The readymade set, using Smart Objects & warps to enable mapping objects onto surfaces, looks particularly interesting. Royalty-free pieces are for sale on the site.
  • LiveSurface offers a large library of images ready for use with Photoshop's Vanishing Point filter. Files "are pre-masked, layered and have embedded 3D surfaces."


PresetsHeaven is all about sharing high quality development presets for Lightroom.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Photography Network TV?

There is a promising development at the intersection of photography and video content, the development-in-progress Photography Network TV. A beta launch is coming in late November with a full launch near PMA 2009. In the words of one of the co-founders, "think Food Network but for photography".

Oh can this be true?!? If so, AWESOME!

Sunday, October 26, 2008

The Best Web Video I’ve Seen....Ever.

Where the Hell is Matt? (2008) from Matthew Harding on Vimeo.

I wish I could say it as good as Syl Arena said it, but I can't. So, I give you his words and know that they echo through me...

Let’s face it - October’s been a tough month. The world melted down financially. There’s coast-to-coast vitriol over the election. A thief decided that he needed one of my cameras and a favorite lens more than I do. Job prospects are evaporating for everyone I know.

In the midst of all this, the following came to me quite innocently. Amy received the link in an email. Call me tired. Call me emotional. The first time I watched it, goose bumps covered my arms. I’ve watched it a dozen two dozen times since. Smiles break out whenever I show it to friends.

I’ve been lifted up and reinvigorated. Our world truly is an amazing place filled with people of all shapes, colors and sizes. I believe (again) that our current tribulations will pass. Thanks to a guy named Matt and his friends in 43 countries.

If you have fast broadband, click here to watch a High-Def version.

Like many great movements, it started as a simple idea and spread like wildfire. Read the story here. If you want to download a legit personal copy for free, click here.

What’s this have to do with being a photographer? Nothing and everything at the same time.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Incredible New Utility for RAW Shooters

If you missed it, Michael Tapes (and the crew at Imagenomics) have released an hot new utility “Instant JPEG from Raw” that makes a JPEG from any Raw file, and it does it incredibly fast. The utility is free. Download it from

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Lightroom 2.1 and Camera Raw 5.1

Both Lightroom 2.1 and Camera Raw 5.1 will be available later today. Both are free to existing users of Lightroom 2.0 and Camera Raw 5.0 (5.0 shipped with Photoshop CS4). There are 15 new digital cameras supported in Lightroom 2.1 and Camera Raw 5.1 including the Canon EOS 1000D, Canon EOS 50D, Fuji FinePix IS Pro, Kodak EasyShare Z1015 IS, Leaf AFi II 6, Leaf AFi II 7, Leaf Aptus II 6, Leaf Aptus II 7, Nikon D700, Nikon D90, Nikon Coolpix P6000, Olympus SP-565 UZ, Pentax K2000, Sigma DP1, and Sony A900. For CS3 users feeling left out in the cold, these are already supported in Camera Raw 4.6.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Adjusting Space Between Letters

There's nothing new in the news world or deals or new products to write about today, so I thought I throw out a tip (soon to be a more regular part of this blog).

Did you know you can visually control the spacing between your type (instead of numerically trying to figure it out)? Here’s how: To set the tracking (the space between each letter or word in a group), highlight the type with the Type tool (T), then press Alt-Left Arrow (Mac: Option-Left Arrow) to tighten. Press Alt-Right Arrow (Mac: Option-Right Arrow ) to expand the space between a selected group of letters or words.

To adjust the space between two individual letters (called kerning), click your cursor between the two letters and use the same keyboard shortcuts mentioned above.

Friday, October 17, 2008

If you missed the last good deal on Memory Cards...

I've gotten wind again of a hot deal on Sandisk cards at Adorama. Hot on the heels of a popular rebate program, Sandisk and Adorama are back with a new pre-paid Visa card rebate program that starts October 12, 2008 and ends January 17, 2009. So if you missed the previous rebate, you are in luck, the new one is ready to go! The terms state "limit three cards per redemption claim. Limit three claims per household". This is promotion #59051.

Note that the new promotion has a different set of cards, namely, with the addition of Extreme IV cards. Also note that these are buy-more save-more rebates. The price listed in each column is the total price after rebate, not the price per individual card.

Sandisk CompactFlash Rebate specials at Adorama
CF Memory CardBuy OneBuy TwoBuy Three
4gb Extreme III$28 (after $10 rebate)$46 (after $30 rebate)$54 (after $60 rebate)
8gb Extreme III$45 (after $15 rebate)$85 (after $35 rebate)$110 (after $70 rebate)
4gb Extreme IV$50 (after $20 rebate)$90 (after $50 rebate)$120 (after $90 rebate)
8gb Extreme IV$89 (after $40 rebate)$165 (after $95 rebate)$240 (after $150 rebate)
16gb Extreme IV$195 (after $45 rebate)$380 (after $100 rebate)$520 (after $200 rebate)

Sandisk SD/SDHC Rebate specials at Adorama
SDHC Memory CardBuy OneBuy TwoBuy Three
4gb Extreme III$39 (after $10 rebate)$68 (after $30 rebate)$87 (after $60 rebate)
8gb Extreme III$45 (after $15 rebate)$85 (after $35 rebate)$110 (after $70 rebate)
16gb Extreme III$120 (after $20 rebate)$230 (after $50 rebate)$320 (after $100 rebate)

I've tried to do the math accurately, but please double-check on your own to be sure! If you notice any errors, please let us know!

Please read the terms and conditions carefully and note that this is a prepaid Visa card rebate, not a check you can cash at the bank. As always with rebates, make sure you make copies of everything you submit, follow-up and follow-through. If you hate rebates, don't do this, unless you are committed to the rebate process!

Coming in November: AnnieLeibovitz's New Book

Mix equal parts talent, resources and prima donna and you'll end up with the #1 A-List people shooter Annie Leibovitz.

She has a new book coming out, Annie Leibovitz: At Work, that looks to be a behind-the-scenes study of some of her more famous shoots.

I have always loved her work, and laughed at her antics, but I learn something every time I look at her photos.

Amazon has it available for pre-order at $26.40 (list is $40.00) with price protection between now and when it ships.

Can't go wrong with this one, for that price.

Reminder! Great Shots II - Mastering Light

Part II of the Turn Your Snapshots Into GREAT Shots Class series is coming up November 15. Please get yourself pre-registered to guarantee your spot. First responders' get a special surprise!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

The Mothership has delivered!

Adobe announced today that it's newest CS4 product line is now shipping! If, like me, you've been waiting and waiting - today will make you smile. Although compared to years past - this wait was nothing. Usually, they announced it in the Fall and made us wait until Spring. This time is was less than a month!

Monday, October 13, 2008

Photoshop Tutorials

As promised, I'm making more of an effort to bring you something daily to my blog. Today, I've found a neat collection of Photoshop tutorials. compiled this collection of links to tutorials on Photoshop. These are the written type of tutorials, but good anyway. Here’s the full list.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

R-Strap Camera Strap - Mmmmm....Me Likey!

I’ve been hearing a lot about the R-Strap lately, but I thought, “Really? It’s just a camera strap. What’s the big deal?”

Turns out it’s a really smart design. The strap hangs diagonally across your chest like a messenger bag, so:

  1. It’s more comfortable than a neck strap, and…
  2. Your camera stays out of the way at your hip. (However, the potential to bang it in to everything you pass - has me concerned too.)

The smart bit is the little slider attachment that allows you to glide the camera up the strap to your eye so you can take a picture. The camera moves, but the strap doesn’t. See it in action here.

It’s really clever, but kind of expensive for a strap.

The Original R-Strap

I Heart Tilt-Shift Photography

You may have seen examples of using Tilt/Shift photographic techniques to make photos of real things look like toys. (no idea what I'm talking about? Check wikipedia or search Google images for "tilt shift miniature")

Anyways, photographer Chase Jarvis shows a video from Keith Loutit that takes it to another level using stop motion photography to create this really cool video. Watch it here.

Now taking Tilt-Shift images requires a really expensive Tilt-Shift lens, or you can just fake it with this cool Photoshop tutorial. Have fun!

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Photoshop 7 Users BEWARE!

If you are using Photoshop 7 and you want to upgrade to the newest version of Photoshop. You need to hurry and upgrade by October 15. According to John Nack’s blog, Adobe will only allow upgrading up to three versions back. So to upgrade to Photoshop CS3 you would need CS2, CS, or Photoshop 7. When CS4 is released Photoshop 7 will no longer qualify. So check on that and make sure your version qualifies. Don’t wait, October 15 is closing in.

ATTN: Canon Owners

If you are a Canon DSLR user you might be interested to download and test the new version of Canon’s RAW converter Digital Photo Professional, or DPP, version that ships with the new Canon EOS 50D.

This download is NOT yet an official Canon release and available only for Microsoft Windows OS (English).

So grab your DPP now on Rapidshare or BadOnGo and if you are looking for the instruction manual it can be found on Canon website!

By the way this is a full version, not an upgrade and doesn’t require any previous version installed.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Whatever you do - DON'T VOTE!

Another Great Deal!

This is one of the rare buy-more save-more promotions. Adorama has new specials on the mail-in prepaid Visa card rebate promotion. Be sure to read all the terms and conditions in the rebate form before purchasing. The rebates expire on October 11, and the promotion is while-supplies-last.

As you can see, these are great deals, because the more cards you buy, the less you pay, sometimes you pay the same price (after rebate) for three cards as you would for one card! But if you hate rebates, make sure you are committed to the rebate process, otherwise spare yourself the frustration.

The prices listed under "Buy Two" and "Buy Three" are the total prices if you buy two or three cards respectively.

Sandisk CompactFlash Rebate specials at Adorama
CF Memory CardBuy OneBuy TwoBuy Three
16gb Extreme III CompactFlash$25 (after $90 rebate)$45 (after $190 rebate)$45 (after $300 rebate)
8gb Extreme III CompactFlash$20 (after $40 rebate)$20 (after $100 rebate)$20 (after $160 rebate)
4gb Extreme III CompactFlash$18 (after $20 rebate)$26 (after $50 rebate)$34 (after $80 rebate)
2gb Extreme III CompactFlash$15 (after $10 rebate)$20 (after $30 rebate)$25 (after $50 rebate)
4gb Ducati Extreme CompactFlash$25 (after $45 rebate)$40 (after $100 rebate)$50 (after $160 rebate)
8gb Ducati Express CompactFlash$45 (after $75 rebate)$80 (after $160 rebate)$110 (after $250 rebate)

Sandisk SD/SDHC Rebate specials at Adorama
SDHC Memory CardBuy OneBuy TwoBuy Three
4gb Extreme III SDHC$18 (after $20 rebate)$31 (after $45 rebate)$39 (after $75 rebate)
8gb Extreme III SDHC$25 (after $35 rebate)$40 (after $80 rebate)$50 (after $130 rebate)

This is a preloaded Visa card rebate
Please note that this is a preloaded Visa gift card rebate, not a cold cash check. You can use it the same way you use a Visa card, but you obviously can't go to the bank and cash it.