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SNAPSHOT - PHOTO NEWS FROM BETTERPHOTO.COM
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Welcome to SnapShot, the weekly newsletter on
the art of photography from
BetterPhoto.com


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IN THIS ISSUE - Monday, April 11, 2005
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* SPOTLIGHT: Still Time to Sign Up for an Online Course!
* BETTERPHOTO: BetterPhoto's Deluxe BetterPholios™: Two Great Options
* BETTERPHOTO: Honors for BetterPhoto Member!
* BETTERPHOTO: Workshops, Workshops, and More Workshops!
* FEATURED GALLERY: Focus on Panning in Photography
* FEATURED PLACE: Focus on Holland Pictures
* PHOTO TRIVIA QUESTION: First Digital Camera Invented / Photographer's Day Job
* THIS WEEK'S TIP: More Effective Color Saturation Boosting ... by Peter K. Burian
* NEW PHOTO Q&A 1: Tripods for Photography: Fixing a Squeak
* NEW PHOTO Q&A 2: Portrait Pictures: Lighting the Face
* NEW PHOTO Q&A 3: Flash Photography: Diffusion Suggestions?
* NEW PHOTO Q&A 4: Large Group Photos: Getting the Lighting Right
* NEW PHOTO Q&A 5: Macro Photography: What's Needed to Get Close
* NEW PHOTO Q&A 6: Attention, Digital Rebel Users: Blurry Pictures?
* NEW PHOTO Q&A 7: Camera Filters: Polarizer, Protection, Etc.
* NEW PHOTO Q&A 8: Gymnastics Pics: Grainy and Dark
* NEW PHOTO Q&A 9: Image Quality Vs. Fast Action
* NEW PHOTO Q&A 10: Lighting Equipment
* NEW PHOTO Q&A 11: Portable Storage of Digital Photos
* NEW PHOTO Q&A 12: What Do I Charge for Pictures?
* NEW PHOTO Q&A 13: Photographing People: The Legalities
* CONTINUING PHOTO Q&A 1: Surfing Photography: What Lens Is Best?


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IN THE SPOTLIGHT - ADVERTISEMENT
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Still Time to Sign Up for an Online Course!
Stop kicking yourself for waiting too long ... after all, you can still join one of BetterPhoto's online photography courses. Yes, the first lessons have already been sent out, but the first assignments for our regular 8-week courses aren't even due until Sunday, April 17th! Enroll now, and we'll send you the first lesson pronto! Learn more at
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WHAT'S NEW AT BETTERPHOTO.COM
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Welcome to the 207th issue of SnapShot!

Hi

Our spring online courses are off to a fantastic start! And there are at least four very good reasons why this is our best lineup ever: new courses that include Robin Nichols' "Bare Bones Digital Photography"; William Neill's "Portfolio Development"; Jim Zuckerman's "Photoshop II: Advanced Creative Techniques"; and Charlie Borland's "Lighting for Commercial Photography: Advanced." There's still space available in those and other courses. Learn more at:
http://www.betterphoto.com/photocourses/categories.asp

In this issue of SnapShot, be sure to check out This Week's Photo Tip by instructor Peter Burian. Also, don't miss the answer to last week's Photo Trivia Question. Lastly, check out our usual lineup of features and yet another awesome batch of questions and answers.

Have another fun-filled photographic week!
Jim Miotke
http://www.betterphoto.com/MG.asp?ID=124


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*****
Honors for BetterPhoto Member!
Congratulations go to Heather McFarland for being named Photographer of the Year at the Digital Image Cafe. Way to go, Heather! See all the details at:
http://www.shutterbug.com/news/040405photographer/


*****
Workshops, Workshops, and More Workshops!
- Aspen Photo Workshops, founded by BetterPhoto instructor Charlie Borland, also features three other BP instructors: Bryan Peterson, Jim Zuckerman, and Lewis Kemper. For details:
http://www.aspenphotoworkshops.com/index.htm

- Art Wolfe Asheville Spring Workshop takes place May 12-15, 2005, in Asheville, North Carolina. For information:
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- Strabo Photo Tours includes a fine lineup of leaders, such as BetterPhoto instructor Brenda Tharp. For details:
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FEATURED GALLERY
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Focus on Panning in Photography
BetterPhoto members and instructors have had such creative success while working with shutter speed and moving subjects. To see for yourself, check out our Panning in Photography gallery at:
http://www.betterphoto.com/gallery/dynoGall2.asp?catID=97

Not sure how to use this photographic field technique? For some valuable tips and techniques on panning, read instructor Bryan Peterson's excellent how-to article, "Photographing Action: Panning Your Subject," at:
http://www.betterphoto.com/article.asp?id=41

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FEATURED PLACE
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Focus on Holland Pictures
Wonderful colors, architecture, and people are among the many photographic attractions of this beautiful European getaway. And BetterPhoto members and instructors have captured the country in lots of eye-catching ways. Check out our Holland Pictures gallery at:
http://www.betterphoto.com/gallery/dynoGall2.asp?catID=976

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PHOTO TRIVIA QUIZ OF THE WEEK
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Last week, we asked:
The first electronic still camera to record digital images on memory cards debuted in what year? (Note regarding this question on the first digital camera invented: Although the first person to provide the correct year "wins" this quiz, feel free to also guess the manufacturer of this camera.)

The first, best answer - entered by BetterPhoto member Jay Sanders is:
1988 - Manufacturer: Fuji Photo Film Co., Ltd. Camera model: The DS-1P. Memory card: internal 16mb card developed by Toshiba

Editor's Note: Lots of great answers for this intriguing (and challenging) question ... but Chris's is the first and best answer! By the way, check out the March/April 2005 issue of American Photo magazine ... it includes the Digital Technology Timeline 1947-2005, by BetterPhoto instructor Jeff Wignall. The timeline comes from his excellent book: The Joy of Digital Photography. Also, check out Jeff's online course right here at BetterPhoto!

To see all answers to this question, visit:
http://www.betterphoto.com/forms/trivia.asp?stat=PRV

And Now... This Week's Photo Trivia Question - Photographer's Day Job - entered by BetterPhoto member Kerry Drager

What noted outdoor/adventure photographer got his start while climbing and photographing on weekends and running an automotive business on weekdays? (Note: He turned full time to freelance photography and writing in 1972.)

Submit your own answer to this question by visiting:
http://www.betterphoto.com/forms/trivia.asp

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THIS WEEK'S PHOTO TIP
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More Effective Color Saturation Boosting ... by Peter K. Burian
Take care when using the Color Saturation function in Adobe Photoshop. In Photoshop or Elements: Any excessive amount (beyond about +15) can damage the image: i.e., highly saturated areas will look posterized. Also, remember: You may not want to boost saturation of all colors to the same extent. Use the pull down menu within the Color Saturation box to select individual colors. Adjust the saturation of any of these, as desired. Alternative for Higher Color Saturation (Photoshop Only): There is another little known function in Photoshop called Selective Color. Choose this option and you can adjust each of several colors - adding or subtracting certain colors. Examples: For richer yellow in yellow tones in your image (without posterization), add Yellow to Yellow. For richer blues, add a bit of Cyan and Black to Blue. And so on. Experiment with each option until you reach the desired effect. Afterwards, you may - or may not - want to also use the Color Saturation function. Photoshop can be fun, and many functions are not difficult!

Check out Peter Burian's online course:
Digital Photography

Visit Peter's Pro Deluxe BetterPholio™:
www.peterkburian.com

Top Ten Tips:
http://www.betterphoto.com/exploring/tips.asp

All Tips:
http://www.betterphoto.com/exploring/allTips.asp

Add Your Own Tip:
http://www.betterphoto.com/forms/login.asp?category=tip&inputType=tip

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PHOTOGRAPHY Q&A - NEW THIS WEEK
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NEW QUESTION 1: Tripods for Photography: Fixing a Squeak
I have a Bogen 3265 head (about 6 years old). In the last year it has been making an awful squeak when I move it. I am afraid to use anything on it--like WD40. But the squeak has to go. Any ideas?
- Heidi Dunlop

ANSWER 1:
Heidi,
A very small amount of Dawn Dishwashing Liquid (or any other brand) should do the trick. WD40 shouldn't hurt anything. The trick is that anything you use, use it sparingly. Just make sure you remove any excess so that it doesn't get smeared and possibly get on your camera. Apply only a small "dab" where it is needed.
- BRYAN D. NEWMAN

ANSWER 2:
Try contacting Bogen's Web site directly to see what they recommend. This may be a condition that had occurred frequently enough that their "brain team" has already come up with the perfect solution to the problem.
- Bob Cammarata

Visit cammphoto.com - Bob's Deluxe BetterPholio™

Read this Q&A at BetterPhoto.com:
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NEW QUESTION 2: Portrait Pictures: Lighting the Face
I would be interested in hearing how an experienced portrait photographer goes about lighting the face so it really "pops" in a low-key studio portrait. Specifically, what equipment is best for this?
- Bert

ANSWER 1:
Low-key is defined as an image where the majority of the image is darker than medium gray. If you have a dark background, and your subject is in dark clothes - with a light on the face that spills over as little as possible on everything else - you will have a dramatic low-key image that should pop.
- Michael H. Cothran

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NEW QUESTION 3: Flash Photography: Diffusion Suggestions?
Hello all,
I have a Canon Rebel Ti and was wondering if anyone had any ideas on how to diffuse the on-camera flash. I find the on camera flash is not very flattering and need a way to soften the flash a little until I purchase the 550EX Speedlite.
- Marquee Smith

ANSWER 1:
There's no real or efficient way to do it. If you use the pop-up flash as a "fill" light - that is, dimmer than your ambient light - the effect can be quite acceptable. But forget it if you are using it as a "main" light. When you get your 550EX, be sure to get the off-camera TTL cord too, and add a nice soft box, like the two portable units available from Chimera. Portable Chimera softboxes will give you the best quality and softness you can get out a small strobe.
Michael H. Cothran
www.mhcphoto.net
- Michael H. Cothran

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NEW QUESTION 4: Large Group Photos: Getting the Lighting Right
I have been asked to do a large group photo inside a gym at night of approximately 110 people. I use a SLR 35mm. Could you please give me some tips to get the best photo, as far as aperture, etc.?.
- Kim C. Carrier

ANSWER 1:
Your biggest problem is going to be light. What kind of flash, or flashes, are you going to use?
- Kerry L. Walker

ANSWER 2:
So Kim, do these 110 people need to be recognizable in the photo or just appear as a sea of people? As Kerry said, your big problem is light, for a lot of reasons, especially if you intend to shoot this on color film because the lights in a gym aren't usually balanced for daylight and produce color casts, like the lovely fluorescent green, or sodium vapor green, yellow, or cyan. Overhead lighting also produces shadows under the eyes of the subjects who aren't gazing up, so those shadows need to be filled or you're going to have a sea of faceless individuals. (Poetic perhaps, but not very photogenic.)
Unless you've got sufficient lighting directed INTO the group, depth of field is also going to be a problem, so people in the back may not be in focus. You need a lot of light from relatively powerful sources and in broad/ diffusing light modifiers (reflectors, softboxes, etc.) to give you smaller f-stops you need for focus or depth of field. Remember, the smaller the f-stop you can work with - e.g. f-11 through 16 - the better off you'll be no matter how many rows of people you've got. An on-camera flash just won't do it, even with a fast film or ISO.
Multiple lights placed on stands is the right way to do this, using a view camera and a Polaroid back to test your lighting and exposure. Beyond that, you may be outgunned on this one, unless you break the big group down into smaller groups, say 5-10 people. ;>)
Mark
- Mark Feldstein

ANSWER 3:
For a group that large, you might try getting above the group and taking the picture on a downward angle. The bleachers may be arranged in a way that you could do this, or you might stand on a tall ladder. This way, the people will be looking up, and you won't have as many shadows on their faces. If you reverse it and put the people in the stands with you on the floor, you will get shadows on their faces from the overhead lighting.
The lighting will be the tough part.
- Chris A. Vedros

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NEW QUESTION 5: Macro Photography: What's Needed to Get Close
I have the Canon Elan 7e, and 2 lenses that have macro settings, yet I can never seem to get close enough! Is there a better lens I could buy that would let me get closer? Thank you.
- Jessica McCollam

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ANSWER 1:
It depends how close you actually want to get. Lenses (zooms) with "macro settings" are not true macro lenses. Canon makes four true macro lenses - a 50mm, 100mm, and 180mm, all with 1:1 capability. The fourth lens is a special 65mm lens that gets even closer. If macro is your thing, then you should own a true macro lens.
If, for some reason, you want to stick with what you own, there are lots of accessories you can buy cheaply to get you closer - front end close-up diopters and/or rear end extension tubes. Still not as good as a true macro, but a lot cheaper.
Michael H. Cothran
www.mhcphoto.net
- Michael H. Cothran

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ANSWER 2:
Hi Jessica,
Zoom lenses with macro aren't true macro lenses, as Michael mentioned. You could get extension tubes or diopters. I think extension tubes are preferred. My understanding is that the problems with any add-ons you buy like this is that you lose light and usually detail around the edges. But if budget is a concern, these still might be the best option for you, especially if you want to take certain types of macro (soft, dreamy flower shots, for instance, and not detail crisp insect shots).
I made the decision to invest in an actual macro lens. It dawned on me that when the weather is crummy or the time of year is ugly macros are always an option that I really enjoy. One bouquet for $10 and I have days worth of shots! They can also make excellent portrait lenses.
Canon makes some, as mentioned, that are excellent and expensive! Budget was a bit of a concern for me, but I didn't want to sacrifice tons of quality. I chose a Sigma 105mm 2.8 EX that got excellent reviews. I just love it. I purchased mine from eBay for about $300. It's a great lens! The sacrifice on this lens is that autofocus doesn't work worth beans ... it hunts and hunts. But I'm fine with that trade-in as I like to use manual focus for macros anyway - it's so much more precise at that close distance. This lens also has a pretty good working distance, which is nice for taking bug shots. It's pretty fast too. VERY SHARP as well and contrasty.
I now want extension tubes as well, so I can get even closer with my macro lens! You can NEVER get too close!
Karma
- Karma Wilson

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NEW QUESTION 6: Attention, Digital Rebel Users: Blurry Pictures?
I would like to know from other Canon Digital Rebel users if they have experienced any problems with their photos being slightly blurry? I use a tripod and still can't seem to get really clear sharp photos.
- Sharon Barberee

ANSWER 1:
Other than operator error? No. I love the camera!!
Bob
- Robert Cournoyer

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ANSWER 2:
No, I have owned the Digital Rebel since Christmas and have taken 2000 pictures and not 1 complaint. What lens, ISO, filter, lighting are you using?
- D.J. Kick

ANSWER 3:
In addition to "what lens/ISO/filter/lighting" ... How are you saving the files? RAW? JPG: Large-Fine, Large-Normal, Medium-Fine, Medium-Normal, Small-Fine, Small-Normal? If JPG, what Parameter settings are you using? Are you applying sharpening in post-processing?
- Jon Close

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NEW QUESTION 7: Camera Filters: Polarizer, Protection, Etc.
I use a daylight filter on my Nikon most of the time. When I need to change over to a polarizing filter should I remove the daylight filter or simply screw the polarizing filter over the top of it?
- Jim Manganella

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ANSWER 1:
The use of "daylight" filters (haze, UV, daylight, etc.) really do nothing more than offer some physical protection to the front lens element - and at the cost of adding another piece of image-degrading glass that light has to pass through on its way to your film or digital sensor. Unless you feel your lens needs protection while you are shooting, I would not use them at all. However, you should definitely take it off when using your polarizer, since it then serves no purpose.
- Michael H. Cothran

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ANSWER 2:
I agree with Michael. Filters should only be used if they are requisite to a particular effect you're trying to achieve. I've never felt the need for lens protection (other than just being careful), and stacking filters will definitely affect image quality. There is also the possibility that vignetting (a slight darkening) will occur around the edges of the frame when two or more filters are applied.
- Bob Cammarata

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NEW QUESTION 8: Gymnastics Pics: Grainy and Dark
Hi,
I have been shooting gymnastics and cannot figure out why this is happening: When I take a picture, it comes out very grainy and dark and yucky. The film is 800, and the speeds I have tried are 1/90, 1/250, 1/350, 1/500, 1/750, and 1/2000. I don't know the ISO, but these are pretty dimly-lit, fast-moving people. Any help with detailed settings would be MUCH appreciated! I am a dummy when it comes to settings. Please help!
Thank you :)
- C

ANSWER 1:
Dark means underexposed. If 1/90 at your widest aperture doesn't do it, then you use a slower speed. You can add light with flash, bigger aperture, longer shutter speed, or faster film.
- Gregory La Grange

Visit gregorylagrange.org - Gregory's Deluxe BetterPholio™

ANSWER 2:
It sounds to me like you are underexposing all of your shots. If you're indoors and not using flash to stop action, and your images are coming out dark, grainy,and muddy, there is not enough available light from overhead for you to get away with fast-enough shutter speeds to stop the action. What you might want to try is to set your camera in auto mode (if it has one) and try to use a flash or on-camera flash. Another thing, you might want to try to set your aperture (f number) wide open - lower number like 3.5, 4, 5.6, or somewhere along those lines. That should get you faster shutter speeds, so maybe you could get away without using flash. Oh yeah, and your film speed(800) is the same as ISO. If I can, I might suggest looking into a book by Bryan Peterson called Understanding Exposure ... it will help you understand your camera and how it works.
Hope I helped you out some ...
- Justin

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NEW QUESTION 9: Image Quality Vs. Fast Action
I will be shooting my son's Tae Kwon Do belt testing this weekend, and I am having problems deciding on what type of film I should use. Obviously, I want the highest image quality that I can get, but he's fast and a slow film just isn't going to work. Any thoughts on film speed/brand? Thanks!
- Dawn

ANSWER 1:
If you can get close enough (and it won't distract his routine), use flash to freeze the action. A slow film will produce better prints in this scenario. If flash is not an option, a shutter speed of at least 1/500 sec would be needed to freeze what I'm assuming are some pretty fast moves.
Ideally, if you could access the arena early enough and test the lighting with your in-camera meter to see what ISO setting will give you access to that shutter speed at f-5.6 or f-8.
If the lighting is fairly bright, ISO/400 film should work. If the lighting is too dim to allow for those aperture/shutter speed settings at 400, set the dial to 800 and take another reading. If this works better, shoot everything at that setting and tell your lab to push-process the film one stop.
The ISO/400 films of today by either Kodak or Fuji will make great prints up to 8x10.
- Bob Cammarata

Visit cammphoto.com - Bob's Deluxe BetterPholio™

ANSWER 2:
Greetings Dawn: The type of film you use depends on a few things, but mainly the lighting you have (or don't have) to work with. If you've got ceiling fluorescents, they produce a color cast on transparency or color negative films. An FLD or FLD filter helps but may not completely eliminate the problem. Or, you can ask the lab to subtract out for fluorescents when printing. With black and white film, of course, the type of lighting isn't a problem.
If you can use some type of fill-in flash, and balance your shutter speed f-stop to record ambient light, you'll likely be able to stop action, and get some background illumination from the overhead lighting. A flash will help eliminate any color cast from fluorescents. Before you use a flash, talk to someone in charge of the event to make sure that's OK. If you're close enough, an on-camera flash should work fine. (Like 20' or less).
As to film types, you probably want something medium speed to achieve less grain and better color saturation. 400 speed will probably be more than sufficient. If it's pretty bright, 200 speed should work fine. I always like Agfa Optima or Fujipress color negative film, which is pretty versatile in its ISO range. Some folks like the Kodacolor Gold stuff, though I don't for a few reasons.
I also prefer ol' fashioned Kodak Tri-X Pan for black and white work shooting low light theatrical productions without flash, Fuji Neopan 1600 if it's darker, and if it's really dark, Ilford or T-Max 3200 speed. The Neopan can be rated at 3200 (pushed one stop) if you let the lab know.
Hope this is useful for ya. Have fun.
Mark
- Mark Feldstein

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NEW QUESTION 10: Lighting Equipment
I have a Nikon 65 and need to buy lighting for studio - I use the hotshoe flash (I'm a beginner) but I can't turn my camera this way. What kind of lighting equipment do I need? What does an umbrella do? I am clueless to this. I take photos of small children and babies and always have red eye and shadows behind the head. I pull them away from the wall, and I still get it. I really need help trying to figure what to buy for this problem. How do you use a light meter??? Anyone who can tell me where to find these answers - I am forever grateful! The built-in flash I always use and only sometimes I use my add-on flash - but it doesn't always look good. HELP!!
- Kelly Pot

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ANSWER 1:
Kelly
As soon as you move your main light off the camera and to the side, you will no longer have red eye. Once you do that, you may still have shadows on the wall, but you can get rid of those by moving your subject away from the background.

There are basically two light types: monolights and power packs. I have both. Power packs have light heads that plug into the power pack and are 'tethered' to that pack. Monolights are individual light heads with the power pack built into them. These are stand-alone units, and I believe are more versatile. A basic portrait setup consists of three lights, stands, backgrounds, umbrellas, light boxes, etc. There are many brands to choose from.

Umbrellas give you a big broad light source and sort of throw light everywhere, and this can be useful as well as a problem. A light box also is a big soft light modifier, but controls much better the throw of light.

A light meter is what is built into your camera and every time you take a photo, the light meter determines the exposure based on the light level. A flash meter also measures light level, but measures what comes out of the flash units. They make hand-held units that measure both flash and ambient light.

You can learn lighting by obtaining books, there is lots of free info on sites such as White Lightnings and Photoflex Web sites, and there are great classes here at BetterPhoto if you want to have an instructor guide you. Good luck and have fun!
- Charlie Borland

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Take an Online PhotoCourse™ with Charlie Borland:
Lighting for Commercial Photography
Stock Photography
Lighting for Commercial Photography: Advanced

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NEW QUESTION 11: Portable Storage of Digital Photos
I would like to get something to back up my cards when I travel. I have found two so far that look good. One is the Epson-P-2000 Multimedia storage viewer, and the second is the Smartdick-FlashTrax Image Stagae Device and Viewer. I hope to travel out of the country and worry about losing one of my cards or running out of storage on the cards themselves. What is your opinion of these, or is there one out there that is better? Thanks.
- Ky Schroeder

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ANSWER 1:
Ky,
There are plenty of options here that you can get to do the job. I have a friend that uses a Fortress Portable Hard Drive and swears by it, but it has to be plugged in. I use the Apacer Portable CD Burner and it is rechargeable, so I can use it in the field without plugging in. I just have to carry a few CDs with me.
- Charlie Borland

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Visit Charlie Borland's Web Site - www.borlandphoto.com

Take an Online PhotoCourse™ with Charlie Borland:
Lighting for Commercial Photography
Stock Photography
Lighting for Commercial Photography: Advanced

ANSWER 2:
Ky,
I recently bought a Micro Solutions Roadstor. The Roadstor is a usb CD RW/DVD ROM drive with built-in card readers. It can burn a CD from digital camera media without being attached to a computer. It can also be hooked up to any television via include av and s-video cables and play photo slideshows or DVD movies. I haven't yet tried the slideshow or DVD player features, but I have burned a CD direct from a compact flash card with it.
Matt.
- Matthew Slyfield

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NEW QUESTION 12: What Do I Charge for Pictures?
I took a shot of a race car in action with film and had it put on a CD. I sent a small picture to the race team, and they asked me what the pixels are on the master and how much do I want for the use of all rights for the picture. Help! What price do I ask for? What do I send them ... print? I need help and advice from all you pros out there.
- Don Conn

ANSWER 1:
Seems that when you distill this down, you've got two problems: First, whether you want to surrender all your rights to the photograph, which essentially means you retain nothing in terms of usage, even for self-promotional purposes. That's not such a hot idea. Meanwhile, I wouldn't send them any photos beyond the one they already have until you come to some sort of agreement or unless it's stamped or watermarked on the digital file.
Second, you have no clue as to what they intend to use this image for. If they use it for team publicity by making and selling or giving away autographed prints, that's one thing. I'd be inclined to let them do that without a usage fee if they clearly print your byline on the face of the photo with your telephone number, and give you, say, 100 copies of it. BUT, if it ends up as mural size on transit buses throughout the U.S. promoting Budweiser, or in magazine ads hyping one product or another, then unless you charge an appropriate usage fee per use, you've screwed yourself out of a fair chunk of change.
I think you need to define your terms of "use" and offer them a list of use fees per type of use. One fee for editorial vs. another fee for advertising vs. another fee for unit publicity. Make sure that you deal with someone on that team with the authority to contract because that's what you're making.
OTOH, if this is not a really spectacular photo, one that could be used in advertising, etc., cut a deal with them for a very minimal use fee in exchange for something like pit passes to make more photos for yourself and them, locally and if they go on the road. There may be some great advantage in that for you and the race team. And, if you continue to get into these situations, you need to look at the Advertising Photogs. of America Web site and the older annual pricing survey, http://www.apaamerica.com, and the American Society of Media Photogs site at http://www.asmp.org. At ASMP, you'll be able to find and purchase a number of handbooks (available to non-members) on stock photography, legal forms for photographers (including invoices w/ rights of usage info), and other memorable publications to help keep you out of these kinds of jams.
Take it light.
Mark
- Mark Feldstein

ANSWER 2:
Don,
One other thought: If the race car is smothered with their race team name and their sponsor - say, Budweiser - you may have trouble doing anything with the image separate from them because you would need permission. I think you just need to ask them what they would like to do with the photo. If they want all rights, it may mean they don't know what they want to use the photo for at this point. When it comes to price, I'll bet they are hoping you don't know how to price, yet if you ask too much, they will say forget it, knowing you can't do much else with the image other than some editorial uses.
If they tell you what they want to use it for, you can get an idea of pricing at www.photographersindex.com. Never sell all rights, but you can sell unlimited rights. These days of Royalty Free, clients don't like to call and renegotiate usages again with the photographer and that is why they like RF. So negotiate as much as you can in the beginning may be your best bet.
- Charlie Borland

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NEW QUESTION 13: Photographing People: The Legalities
What are the rules regarding photographing people and then either publish the photo or entering it for a competition? If I photograph a person in a public place, am I supposed to approach the stranger and ask the person to sign a release? What are the indications for signing a release? When am I supposed to pay a person money for a photograph?
- Bennie G. Lindeque

ANSWER 1:
Well ,Bennie, this has been discussed a lot around here, among other places. First, I offer you the standard disclaimer. Most of us here are photographers of one level or another, not lawyers. Your question is asking for legal advice and for that I would suggest you find a lawyer in your area who specializes in intellectual property law and ask them the questions you posed here.
On the other hand, you're talking about a person's rights to privacy and their right to control how their image or likeness is used. The short answer is for personal, private use, you don't need a release. For commercial use, yes. For editorial use, it depends on a number of factors. If you're doing street photography for publication the safe rule is yes, you need to approach the stranger and ask them to sign a release. Besides, that gets you closer to your subject and you might even end up with a new best friend. :>)
Adequate consideration for signing a model release also may depend on a given situation. Usually a buck is given, but if the shot ends up on a billboard advertising GAP clothing through a stock agency and you get sued for inadequate consideration (contracts issue) then ... get the picture.
Two books I'll recommend you get familiar with if you want to learn more about this subject: "Legal Handbook for Photographers" by Bert Krages, Esq. Amherst Media press, and "The Law (In Plain English) For Photographers" by Leonard Duboff, Allworth Press. Both books explain the rights and liabilities associated with photographers making images under various circumstances.
Take it light
Mark
- Mark Feldstein

ANSWER 2:
Hi Bennie,
Good question, and excellent advice from Mark! Also, check out the following excellent articles by BetterPhoto instructors:

"Model Releases for Stock Photography: Why You Need Them" ... by Charlie Borland
http://www.betterphoto.com/article.asp?id=36

"Model Releases: When You Need Them, When You Don't" ... by Brenda Tharp
http://www.betterphoto.com/article.asp?id=37

Hope this helps, Bennie!
- Kerry Drager

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PHOTOGRAPHY Q&A - CONTINUING FROM PREVIOUS NEWSLETTER
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CONTINUING QUESTION 1: Surfing Photography: What Lens Is Best?
Hello all! I'm a teenage surfing fanatic, and I love photography. I am always out surfing and wonder how good people would look on film. My question is: What is the best array of lenses to have for taking photos of surfing and waves from the beach - a distance of about ... 300mm? I use a Canon AE-1 program (FD system). Any help with equipment needs would be great! Cheers.
- Alon Dekel

ANSWER 1:
Alon: If shooting from the beach, you might need a 600mm lens, and those are super-expensive. If your subjects are quite close, a 300mm lens - still expensive, although you might find a good 100-300mm zoom (in a Canon FD mount) on eBay. The Tamron or Canon brands are fine. Cheers!
- Peter K. Burian

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ANSWER 2:
Alon: The best thing to do would be to look in used camera stores and on eBay to find a lens in the 300mm to 400mm range. You can also get away with using a f 5.6 lens if you use a tripod and shoot photos on bright sunny days. If you are not trying to get shots into big name surf magazines their is no reason to spend thousands of dollars on a 600mm f4 lens. Peter's idea of a 100-300mm zoom lens is also a good idea.
- Miles G. McBreen

ANSWER 3:
I agree with all the above. You should be alright with a 100-300mm lens, and if you really want to get in close you have two options. One is to use a 2x teleconverter that will get you 600mm but will lose slight image quality (although it's affordable). Two (this might seem crazy): buy a one-time use waterproof camera and get close. This way you won't have to worry about getting sand and/or water spray on your expensive equipment.
Most of the time when someone is surfing, it is close to shore (in standing high water) or around the sandbar (which you can still stand in if you can float or swim over the deep area right before it). Another option: You can invest in a waterproof camera, but they could run anywhere from 100$ to 250$ easily. The waterproof one-time-use camera sounds stupid, but it works really well ... the only difference is that you don't have the creative exposure controls and are stuck shooting at infinity.
Just make sure you're close enough to get a good crop, and if someone is coming at you fast on a board just sink into the water until they pass.
- Justin

ANSWER 4:
Hey, Alon, I love surf photos myself. I just came back from Costa Rica in January and have tons of surf photos of my husband and his friends. I used my 300 zoom lens. Standing at shore break, camera on a tripod, I have some great shots. I will post some photos when I get back to my home computer.
- Stephanie Sherwood

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ANSWER 5:
Also, a photographer I met out there would take photos of tourists surfing or whatever. He used a Canon digital with a 400 set lens. He would put himself in the water and just tell the surfers to surf towards him. He got some cool shots too. Obviously, he had a water proof casing for his equipment.
- Stephanie Sherwood

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