Score One for the Photographers

Posted April 7th, 2006 by
Categories: Newsworthy

Bart Train station and passengerThe National Press Photographers Association (NPPA) has reported a victory for photographers against New York City’s Metropolitan Transit Authority. All it took was the threat of a potential lawsuit by the New York Civil Liberties Union. It seems a bunch of (insert: arrogant, paranoid) transit police have been harrassing photographers shooting on public property. They write in the story:

Catherine Rinaldi, general counsel and deputy executive director for MTA, conceded in a March letter to photographers that there is “no ban on photography in the Long Island Railroad or the Metro North Transit system.” The concession came after NYCLU attorneys wrote to MTA demanding that they explain why MTA officers were threatening photographers with arrest for taking pictures in public areas of the transit system.

Read the entire story Here.

Ouch Thats gotta hurt

Posted April 5th, 2006 by
Categories: Copyright, Newsworthy

Bummer. According to an item in last weeks PDN Newswire, a copyright infringment case brought by several noted photographers has been tossed out of court. The three photographers, several of whom I (e)know through various professional forums, sued the Copyright Clearance Center (CCC), a company that provides licensing for magazine article reprints. The newsclip goes on to say:

In rejecting the copyright claims, US District Judge Rya W. Zobel said that granting a third party rights to copyrighted works without authorization doesn’t amount to contributory infringement unless the third party ends up committing a direct infringement. Citing a recent decision by the First Circuit Court of Appeals, the Zobel wrote, “‘wrongful authorization alone’ cannot constitute infringement under the [copyright] statute.”

So, someone (the CCC) is trying to sell (license) something they may not have the rights to distribute to third parties isn’t liable under copyright law unless some third party actually buys and exercises the rights that they didn’t really have the right to license, distribute or acquire. I guess I can understand the judge’s ruling on this one. Technicalities; Ouch! – What I can’t understand is why gas prices are soaring back to $3.00 / gal. with nary a peep. Was there another Hurricane that I missed or something?

Sometimes, you become aware that you’ve just stepped in something, and the only immediate cure is to repeatedly scrape your shoes in the nearest patch of grass.

Photo: Rainy Day Waterfall, Yosemite

Posted April 5th, 2006 by
Categories: California, National Parks, Photos, Weather

Picture: Upper Yosemite Falls on a rainy spring afternoon, Yosemite Valley, Yosemite National Park, California

Upper Yosemite Falls on a rainy spring afternoon, Yosemite Valley, Yosemite National Park, California

I’m supposed to be off for a camping trip in Yosemite Valley soon. But given the weather lately, I wonder if my time wouldn’t be better spent building an Ark. We (California) have been getting pounded by a nearly endless stream of winter and spring storms. March here in the Bay Area broke the all time record (c.1903) for the most days of mesurable rain; 25 out of 31. Rrrrr. So this photo kind of represents a prophecy of sorts, a preview of what I’m likely to see. The reports for the next few weeks are skeptical to downright doubtful that there will be any meaningful changes in the current weather patterns.
Read the rest of this post »

Models Models Everywhere

Posted April 5th, 2006 by
Categories: People, Photo Business, Photos

One of the biggest questions emerging and established photographers often ask is, “When do I need a Model Release, and where can I find one?” Apogee Photo Magazine has a great online article that I’ve linked to from my Photography > Resources page. Author Michael Faulks has written, The Model Release; A Primer, in which he includes information on privacy and commercial gains, as well as a link to a sample model release form. He begins by saying that…

“…two fundamental but competing rights come into play: the right of the photographer or artist to free expression and the right of the subject to privacy. Over the years, a variety of model releases have been developed to contractually spell out an agreement between these two opposing parties.”

Thanks Ugh and more Ugh

Posted April 4th, 2006 by
Categories: Rants and Raves

For starters, Happy April.

I spent the part of the weekend in the South Bay, where I was the featured presenter for an all day seminar hosted by the Yerba Buena Chapter of the Photographic Society of America. Thank you all for having me. It was great fun.

The seminar was on Sunday at 9:00 am, the morning after the time change. Ugh. Of course, I had to be there early to set up. More Ugh. It was my own fault, though. When I was asked which dates I was available, they gave me a choice of April 2nd or April 8th. I picked the 2nd. It never crossed my mind that would be the day when we lose an hours sleep. Triple Ugh. Oh well.

The seminar went great, and I loved presenting to the sold out audience. Many familiar faces, and many enthusiastic comments and questions. Check out your local chapter of the PSA. For locals, I’ll be judging this Thursday at the Contra Costa Camera Club (4/6).
Read the rest of this post »

Common Cents Sense

Posted March 30th, 2006 by
Categories: Photo Business

Photographer, Producer, and Designer Mark Loundy has a wonderful industry resource that includes many “must read” articles in an almost-monthly mini industry e-zine called Return to Common Cents. I’ve also included a permanent link on my Photography > Resources page.

From his site:

Common Cents is an unapologetic, opinionated, and often sarcastic advocate for independent photographers. It will educate, agitate and inform.

There is no article for April, but this should give you plenty of time to catch up on all the excellent past articles. – Happy Reading.

The Work Remains

Posted March 29th, 2006 by
Categories: Fossil Beds

Photographer Bob Carlos Clarke has died. Pay tribute to a person you may not know by taking a moment to see some of his life’s work. His portfolio is HERE. Some images are adult in nature, and may not be appropriate for younger viewers.

Photo: The Wave, Arizona

Posted March 28th, 2006 by
Categories: Deserts, Outdoors, Photos

Picture: Striated Sandstone and blue sky, at “The Wave”, Paria Vermilion Cliffs Wilderness, Arizona

This is the classic spot that many photographers go to take the often-shot, rock reflected in puddle. You know the one, right? Well, Ok, maybe not by description, but you’d recognize it if you saw it. In fact, I’d show you my own version of it, except there wasn’t any water there. It’s a mild to moderate multi-mile hike. On my one trip, I was making the hike by myself, and was there in the late afternoon. For awhile, there was nobody else around; REAL solitude. I left the area just before sunset. By the time I got to my truck, it was dark. I was thankful that I was able to drive into Kanab, Utah for a late night meal. I don’t remember the name of the restaurant, but they were nice enough to allow me in five minutes after their official closing time. After dinner, I drove to Bryce Canyon to sleep and catch the sunrise.

To see more images from the area, visit my 2-page online Arizona Gallery.

Best PJ 2006

Posted March 28th, 2006 by
Categories: Newsworthy, Photos

The National Press Photographer Association (NPPA) has posted the 2006 Best of Photojournalism Winners. As with most news related image exhibitions, there are some very graphic images that are not appropriate for younger viewers. The very first image in the first category (PhotoJournalist of the Year) is an amazing shot of a helicopter crashing in Afghanistan.

Todd Heisler of the Rocky Mountain Times has a heartfelt look at the return of a Marine from Iraq, and of the dozen featured images, one image in particular made me go, “Wow”. Interestingly, that same photo I later saw in a different category, as the first place winner in the General News category.

Give yourself time to view all the categories. There are excellent images in all of them. I’ve added a link to the winners page on my Photography page.

Sold out

Posted March 27th, 2006 by
Categories: Photo Business

No, I don’t mean I sold out by selling my images on microstocks. But, keeping myself overly busy in the last couple weeks, I didn’t even get a chance to post here that I was doing a seminar in San Mateo on April 2nd. And now, it’s too late. I hear from the organizer that the all-day seminar I’ll be presenting for the Yerba Buena Chapter of the Photographic Society of America has already sold out. You can check out the PDF flyer if your curious on the site of the N4C. (Northern California Counsil of Camera Clubs.)

If you’d like to bring me and my seminar to your area, pass my name up the ladder at your local camera club, or other organization, or feel free to contact me directly.