Camera Gear

Is your Viewfinder in Focus?

Last week I was teaching a workshop in Colorado Springs, Colorado. One morning a few of us went to Garden of the Gods, a spectacular place to shoot photos. While walking around the rock formations, a woman came up and asked for some help. I thought her question would make a great blog entry.
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The Joy of Reflectors

Last week Nick Didlick and I were teaching a workshop in southern California. We took the group out for a couple of shoots, going to San Juan Capistrano (the famous old Mission) and Huntington Beach. At the first location the focus was on architecture and plants, at the beach it was people. And once again I marveled at how easy it is to use reflectors to light people.
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One Tough Little Camera

Over the years I've always had a camera or two I could take places where it might get beat up. Mountain climbing, whitewater rafting, winter camping and biking aren't exactly camera-friendly. Once I moved to digital, though, that became a tougher spot to fill. After all, digital cameras are anything but inexpensive, and not exactly rugged. Recently, though, I've had my hands on a little digital point-and-shoot that's almost indestructible.
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Spare Parts

A few years ago I spent some time in Singapore teaching digital photography to a group of newspaper photographers. On my final night there, they took me out to a dinner of "spare parts." Trust me, you don't want to know what it was. If you've been doing photography for very long, you've probably collected various spare parts over the years, and sometime they come in handy for building new tools.
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Photography for Fun

I spend a lot of time these days teaching photography. And at almost every workshop I teach, at least one person comes up to me and asks, "How can I turn photography into a career?" I always give them some suggestions, but I also ask them to think long and hard about whether they truly want to do that. They may find that photography's more rewarding as a hobby.
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New Toy -Teleconverter

Every now and then I try out a new gizmo that so surprises or impresses me that I've just GOT to write about it. This time it's the Nikon TC-20 E II teleconverter, which I'd played with a few years ago and promptly forgot about.
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Digital Infrared

Ever since I first read about infrared photography, many decades ago in high school, I've been intrigued by the idea. The images produced by it are otherworldly and I wanted to try my hand at it. Unfortunately, my attempts back then always ended in failure, not in small part due to the difficulty of using and processing infrared film. Thankfully, times have changed, and digital's taken film out of the equation.
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Arctic Suggestions

Recently I received an email from someone who was part of a workshop I taught, and thought it might make a good blog entry: "I attended your two workshops in Berkeley last week, and didn't get a chance to ask my specific question. I'm leaving for an Antarctic peninsula cruise this coming week, and any suggestions for specific settings (e.g. White Balance) to try under those unusual lighting conditions?"
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Traveling Light

After traveling to 53 countries as a professional photographer, I decided to really live like the everyday traveler and head off on a trip to Morocco with just a Nikon D40, an 18-200 mm lens, and a 2 gig Lexar SD card.
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Reflectors

I was working in my studio last week (translation - the basement) photographing some products I was going to use in a presentation. Two keys to any good photo are light and background. I often use a black backdrop as it highlights the product. And I learned long ago that with lighting, KISS (Keep It Simple Stupid) was a good rule for me to follow. Good light doesn't necessarily mean lots of lights. This time, though, I needed just a bit more.
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