Photo: Hikers at The Wave

Posted October 27th, 2006 by
Categories: Arizona, Deserts, Photos, Travel, Water

Picture: Hikers reflected in desert pool below rock formations at The Wave, Coyote Buttes, Paria / Vermillion Cliffs Wilderness, Arizona – Utah border.

Happy Belated Birthday, Richard!

Sad news; Climber Todd Skinner dies in Yosemite.

Posted October 24th, 2006 by
Categories: Newsworthy

Photo: Leaning Tower, Yosemite Valley, Yosemite National Park, California

Within the last hour I heard the sad news that famed climber Todd Skinner has died in a fall off Leaning Tower in Yosemite Valley. I am not a climber, but my old boss, Galen Rowell had done numerous climbs with Todd, and I had the chance to meet and talk with him on a couple occasions. Many of Galen’s images of Todd became part of my own conscience as I memerized the content of Galen’s image files. Read More at the Denver Post (Link above).

Photo: Red Ivy Leaves on Wall

Posted October 22nd, 2006 by
Categories: Autumn, California, Photos

Picture: Red Ivy leaves in fall on wall of Garry Farrar vineyards, Russian River Valley, Sonoma County, California.

This is an image I shot a year or so ago, and is now one of 4500 image scans in my production queue. I’ve been having lots of fun (sarcasm) this week, dealing with one of my back-up drives going on the fritz. I couldn’t imagine how I’d feel if all 4500 images went poof! It would be like watching 6 months of work vanish in an instant. A reminder… Always, Always, Always Back Up your data and photos.

You’ll also be seeing this as an image in an upcoming new web gallery. Stay tuned for more.

Boy Scouts Honor

Posted October 22nd, 2006 by
Categories: Copyright, Newsworthy

Yes, that’s right; the Boy Scouts of America now have a merit badge for copyright awareness. The AP report highlights that this is aimed toward music and movies. Let’s see them try to clean up and educate all the masses of people swiping material, including photos, for posting on their MySpace account. Now there’s a task!

Learn HDR

Posted October 18th, 2006 by
Categories: Digital

I don’t do too many HDR (High Dynamic Range) photos. In fact, I’ve only experimented with a few shots here and there. But with Photoshop’s HDR feature, it’s possible to get images with a range of detail in highlights and shadows that had not been previously possible with single frame film shots. If you’d like to see a really good tutorial on how to make professional looking HDR images, check out this site.


Posted October 18th, 2006 by
Categories: Photos, Space and Science

Maybe you’ve realized from browsing through this weblog that I’m a bit of a Space & Science fan. One place I love to visit is APOD (Astronomy Picture of the Day). I’ve selected out a few really cool images that are worth seeing.

1.) Saturn Eclipses the Sun – taken from the Cassini spacecraft, this is an amazing display of light and shadow, and a glimpse of the solor system’s second largest planet in a way you may not have seen before.

2.) Space Station & Shuttle in front of the sun. This is an extraordinary example of previsualization and some incredibly good timing.

3.) Finally, Watch a mountain grow. We almost never see how mountains form, as the geologic process occurs over eons. If you click the link to watch the time-lapse photography, and the geologic forces at work below Mount St. Helens, you can actually see a huge rock rise out of the earth at up to 3 feet (1 meter) per day. The result is like watching a huge tooth erupting from the ground.

Check these out!

So unprofessional…

Posted October 16th, 2006 by
Categories: Newsworthy, Photo Business

Reporting from the far and wide regions, the has an article about a local photographer who has been busted for failing to deliver wedding photos to 25 couples; weddings where his fee ranged between $1,500.00 and $5,000.00 each. As I often say, anyone can call themselves a photographer, but not everyone is cabable of being a “Professional”.

This story hits close to home, not by miles, but in as much as the same thing happened to my sister. Her wedding photographer wound up taking only marginal quality images, gave them proofs, but never filled the order. According to my sister, there was a whole coalition of angry couples that worked for years with various city and county agencies trying to track this guy down. More than money, each couple was desperately seeking to get the negatives. (It was a number of years ago…) In the end, I know my sister got her pics back, but many other couples didn’t fare as well.

PS: The reason I didn’t do the wedding photography was because I was the one doing the marrying. Yes, that’s right; I married my sister. And all with the official blessing of San Diego County. Y’all understand that means I was the one standing in front of the Bride & Groom, and NOT the Groom, right?

Swiper, No Swiping!

Posted October 14th, 2006 by
Categories: Copyright

Those of you who have young daughters will recognize the above quote from TV’s “Dora the Explorer“. But for myself, it seemed the fitting quote for mentioning a weblog I found recently through a link posted in one of my professional photography forums. Unfortunately, it’s been such a busy week that I can’t remember where exactly the link came from. Oh well…

Taken directly from his logo, “Plagiarism Today is a site about Plagiarism, Content Theft, and Copyright issues online”. It’s not an official legal site, as in written by a Law Firm, but there is certainly some very informative writing. Listed among the sites goals are:

  1. To increase awareness, both among copyright holders and the media, regarding the prevalence of plagiarism on the Web,
  2. To inform copyright holders of their rights on line and encourage them to protect those rights in a responsible manner,
  3. To bring about legal reforms that benefit all copyright holders, not just those with deep pockets, and create a fair balance between the rights of ownership for the copyright holder and society’s need to have a free and open culture.

Isn’t it ironic how most of the words come directly from his site?  :)

One of the greatest public benefits to copyright laws are the Fair Use Doctrine, which allow a person to take snippets whenever the purpose is for editorial commentary, criticism, or review.

Another Blue Angel shot

Posted October 11th, 2006 by
Categories: Aviation, Photos

Here’s one more shot of the Blue Angels flying in formation during the San Francisco Fleet Week celebrations.

Blue Angels

Posted October 9th, 2006 by
Categories: Aviation, Photos

I felt so non-professional.

In a way, it’s enjoyable when you don’t feel you have to get the shot. That’s the expectation everytime you’re hired as a pro photographer. But not this last Sunday. It was take the kids to the city for the day, mainly to watch the Blue Angels perform as part of the Fleet Week celebrations. We watched the whole show from a distance, and I got a couple nice images, snapshooting away with the Nikon 80-400 VR lens. The VR (Vibration Reduction) was turned off since I was panning with the planes. For the techies – I used Manual focus while panning; this is not the lens to use for AF, due to the AutoFocus Motor not being one of the faster “S” lenses. (“S” stands for Silent Wave Motor in the high-end Nikon lenses. It’s super fast, and super quiet). You can see another image of the Blue Angels that I shot a few years ago, much closer, while MF panning with an F4 500mm lens.