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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 25, 2005
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* SPOTLIGHT: BetterPhoto's Short Courses: Next Session Starts May 4th!
* BETTERPHOTO: Book of Month: Vik Orenstein's Guide to Building Your Photography Business
* BETTERPHOTO: Summer Courses: Enjoy a Season of Learning and Shooting!
* BETTERPHOTO: Free Gallery for All BetterPhoto Members!
* FEATURED GALLERY: Reptile Pictures and Pictures of Amphibians
* FEATURED PLACE: Focus on Virginia Photographs
* PHOTO TRIVIA QUESTION: Who Said ...? / Digital Vs. Film
* THIS WEEK'S TIP: Another Simple Tripod Tip ... by Bob Cammarata
* NEW PHOTO Q&A 1: Fish-Eye Lens: How to Use It
* NEW PHOTO Q&A 2: Interior Photography Without Flash
* NEW PHOTO Q&A 3: Landscape Photography: The Best Lenses
* NEW PHOTO Q&A 4: Legal Use of Photo in Portfolio and Web Site
* NEW PHOTO Q&A 5: Wedding Photography: Doing It for a Friend
* NEW PHOTO Q&A 6: Poses for Youth League Photos
* NEW PHOTO Q&A 7: Intellectual Property of Photographic Concept
* NEW PHOTO Q&A 8: Selling Your Photos: What Do I Charge?
* NEW PHOTO Q&A 9: Compact Flash Card: Formatting
* NEW PHOTO Q&A 10: Photographing Animals: Catchlights in Eyes
* NEW PHOTO Q&A 11: Macro Photography: What Type of Lens?
* CONTINUING PHOTO Q&A 1: Setting Color Temperature


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IN THE SPOTLIGHT - ADVERTISEMENT
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BetterPhoto's Short Courses: Next Session Starts May 4th!
Good news! The second session of our 4-week Short Courses begins May 4th, and spots are still available in Jim Zuckerman's "Non-Digital Special Effects"; Jay Forman's "Photography for Kids 101"; Tony Sweet's "The Four Essential Filters for Film and Digital Cameras"; and Kerry Drager's "Details and Close-ups". To enroll, call toll-free at 1-888-927-9992.

To see our Summer schedule, go to:
http://www.betterphoto.com/online-photography-courses.asp


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WHAT'S NEW AT BETTERPHOTO.COM
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Welcome to the 209th issue of SnapShot!

Hi

It's been an action-packed season at BetterPhoto! The Summer session of our online courses has just been posted, but some Spring classes haven't even begun yet - namely, the second sessions of BetterPhoto's 4-week Short Courses. See the item above for all of the details.

Also in this issue of SnapShot, check out BetterPhoto member Bob Cammarata's excellent Photo Tip, plus the Photo Trivia Quiz, the Featured Gallery (reptiles), the Featured Place (Virginia), and another great collection of questions and answers.

That's it for now. Have another fun-filled photographic week!
Jim Miotke
http://www.betterphoto.com/MG.asp?ID=124


*****
Book of Month: Vik Orenstein's Guide to Building Your Photography Business
Our online store showcases the fantastic books and DVDs from our staff of BetterPhoto instructors. For April, we put the spotlight on Vik Orenstein's awesome book, "Guide to Building Your Photography Business." If you buy this fine book before the end of April, you will receive free U.S. shipping. Best yet, it's autographed by Vik! By the way, Vik also teaches four online courses at BP: The Business of Photography, Photographing Children, Studio Portrait Lighting, and Beginning Photography. For book information, go to:
http://www.betterphoto.com/product/ourProductDetailLg.asp?productID=1238


*****
Summer Courses: Enjoy a Season of Learning and Shooting!
Would you like to learn more about exposure, composition, digital photography, photographic field techniques, Photoshop, specialty subjects, or the business of photography? Join us this summer for an inspiring online photo course at BetterPhoto.com. Let us be your guide ... with our online courses, you WILL become a better photographer. But with so many great courses to choose from, the decision-making process isn't an easy one. That's why we created our categories page, which can be reviewed at:
http://www.betterphoto.com/photocourses/categories.asp


*****
Free Gallery for All BetterPhoto Members!
Currently, all BetterPhoto members have the ability to Delete, Display and Edit text on all of their images. Simply sign in to your Member Center: Sign in Button>My BetterPhotos Tab>Your Photos. In the Your Photos link, you will see the functions to Delete, Display, or Edit Text on any of your uploaded images.

Members also have the option of displaying up to 30 images for free in a Free Gallery. You can activate your free gallery by signing in to your Member Center: Sign In Button>My BetterPhotos Tab>Activate Your Free Gallery.

Check out your Member Center today! For more details, visit:
http://www.betterphoto.com/sites4photogs/free-photo-gallery.asp

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FEATURED GALLERY
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Reptile Pictures and Pictures of Amphibians
Frogs, lizards, and snakes are among the favorite subjects of BetterPhoto shooters. Just take a look at the monthly contest, and you'll see some striking shots of these often beautiful, always visually interesting, animals. See our "Reptile Pictures, Pictures of Amphibians" gallery at
http://www.betterphoto.com/gallery/dynoGall2.asp?catID=463

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FEATURED PLACE
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Focus on Virginia Photographs
Beautiful scenery, wonderful old mills, and rushing streams (especially those shot with long exposures for a slow-motion effect) are among the eye-catching subjects from the state of Virginia caught by BetterPhoto shooters. Check out this Eastern U.S. gallery of Virginia Photographs at:
http://www.betterphoto.com/gallery/dynoGall2.asp?catID=219

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PHOTO TRIVIA QUIZ OF THE WEEK
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Last week, we asked:
What legendary photographer said: Photography provides "absolute unqualified objectivity"?

The first, best answer - entered by BetterPhoto member Elise Cassell is:
Paul Strand (1890-1976)

Editor's Note: Kudos go to Kathy Z. and Cate G. for providing additional information on Paul Strand. Just click on the link below to see their interesting answers!

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 - Digital Vs. Film - entered by BetterPhoto member Kerry Drager

What was the first year that the number of digital cameras purchased exceeded the number of conventional cameras sold?

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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Another Simple Tripod Tip ... by Bob Cammarata
When shooting in the field, and your intended subject is waist-high or higher, fully extend and lock the bottom legs of your tripod BEFORE putting it into place. Then you can position the tripod, and fine-tune the height and camera angle by using the upper leg adjustments while concentrating on the subject and composition. This will help you avoid a lot of needless bending down to ground level.

View Bob Cammarata's Deluxe BetterPholio™: www.cammphoto.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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ADVERTISEMENT
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Absolute Beginner's Guide to Taking Great Photos
My new book guides you away from the point-and-pray method of taking pictures to shooting with confidence. In this simple and clear how-to book, you will learn:

  • How to compose your picture with a more artful eye
  • The top qualities that winning photos exhibit
  • Tips and secrets for consistently getting better results... and much more.
You can order this book online, call our toll-free order processing number 1-888-927-9992, or simply send a check or money order for USD $16.90 (or USD$18.90 if shipping to Canada or USD$24.90 to other international addresses) to:

BetterPhoto.com
P.O. Box 2781
Redmond, WA 98073-2781 USA

To order online, visit:
http://www.betterphoto.com/product/ourProductDetail.asp?productID=1096


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PHOTOGRAPHY Q&A - NEW THIS WEEK
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NEW QUESTION 1: Fish-Eye Lens: How to Use It
I just received a fish-eye lens - 15mm. What is the proper use of this lens? What situations does it apply to? Do you have any good advice to offer someone who has no idea as to when a fish-eye would be applicable to use? Many thanks for your help?
- ABE MILLER

ANSWER 1:
Curved horizons, distorted foreground objects ... and LOTS of depth of field are the results you can expect when using fish-eyes. These are primarily used for special-effect imaging, where the image criteria above are desired.
The thing to watch out for with these extreme wide-angle lenses is to make sure that the front of your feet aren't in the frame when you shoot.
- Bob Cammarata

Visit cammphoto.com - Bob's Deluxe BetterPholio™

Read this Q&A at BetterPhoto.com:
http://www.betterphoto.com/forms/qnaDetail.asp?threadID=15740

Answer this question:
http://www.betterphoto.com/QnAredirect.asp?threadID=15740

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*****


NEW QUESTION 2: Interior Photography Without Flash
I am embarking on photographing interiors and exteriors of historic properties - homes, churches, etc. What is the best equipment to capture the most optimal pictures/ I'm hoping for the quality that one would see in a coffee-table-type book. Most people I've encountered do NOT allow flash equipment inside the structures. How to capture the best photo without flash, and what type of equipment is needed?
- Richard M.

ANSWER 1:
You are trying to light a set without lighting the set. Granted, you only want one image instead of 24 images per second, but the principle remains ... you must light it. Natural light is beautiful, but it needs help when trying to squish it down to film. Contrast range is your killer here. Simply put, the world contains more contrast than film or digital mediums. You need to modify the light to match the film or digital medium: namely reduce contrast.
I would check out how motion picture production crews light a set ... it will give you oogles of ideas for lighting the image. Flashes are less distructive than hot lights ... for still photography.
Good luck.
- Chris J. Browne

ANSWER 2:
You will need film that is balanced to the light that is available to you, most likely tungsten (or daylight film and a filter to compensate for the type of lighting), a good tripod, and a cable release (or use the self-timer). This is assuming you will not be able to use flash or other additional types of lighting. Available light is often hard to work with but can give you some dramatic shots.
- Kerry L. Walker

ANSWER 3:
Richard,
Many photographers looking to do a coffee-table book and/or that type of project shoot with 4x5 view cameras for a couple reasons: the superior quality of 4" x 5" film, and the ability to correct for perpective. When shooting a big project like this, you cannot have crooked doors and windows ... the images need to be square. This does not solve the lighting issues regarding contrast within the scene. If you can't use strobe, maybe you can use hot lights and shoot at dusk. You can get various setups that have swings and tilts or even a Perspective Control lens so you can shoot digitally. But the PC lenses often become useless with cameras that have small sensors, because they are no longer wide-angle enough. You can also correct these same perspectives in Photoshop, and it works well, but may not appear as true as an image taken on 4x5. If you cannot use lights of any kind, you could also try to increase the dynamic range of the digital image by shooting for the highlight and again for the shadow and combining in Photoshop.

Is your project for these historic sites and you have permission? Or is this a personal project? I wonder, because if it was for, say, the County Historic Society, they should let you in with lights. However, if this is your own project, a lot of these places don't allow flash because they don't want photographers shooting pictures and selling them. They want control over that. Graceland is a perfect example. They control every photo and video footage as to how and where it can be used. Your project sounds challenging ... have fun!
- Charlie Borland

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

Take an Online PhotoCourse™ with Charlie Borland:
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Stock Photography

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NEW QUESTION 3: Landscape Photography: The Best Lenses
I will be traveling to Colorado in about 6 weeks. I'm hoping to get some good pictures while I am out there, but I'm still learning how to operate my camera and would appreciate it if some of you can give me some tips. I have a Canon Rebel EOS with two lenses. One lense is a Sigma 28-80mm, while the other is a Sigma 70-300mm. Overall, are these considered good lenses? Is my 28-80mm good enough to use for landscape shots, or do I need to purchase a wide angle lense? If so, what's some good options? For large landscape shots, I will need to set my aperture high so that it will have a wider DOF. I was also planning to use 200 speed film. What should I have my shutter speed set at? If I use these settings, am I headed in the right direction? I know it is best to shoot in the morning, or late in the day. I also plan to have my tripod with me. Please let me know if there are some other things I should look out for, or if I need a different or better lenses. Thanks!
- Brandon Currey

ANSWER 1:
Brandon,
I think your lenses will be fine. Since you're shooting film, you don't have to be worried about the crop factor on digital, so 28mm should be fine for the landscapes. And you are covered on the zoom end for wildlife shots. You don't mention where in Colorado you will be visiting, but you will have numerous photo opportunities as Colorado is a beautiful state. If you don't already have one, I would suggest a circular polarizer filter. I shoot digital, but I have seen some images taken with Fuji Velvia, and they are truly amazing. It's expensive, I hear, but you might think about picking up a roll or two to try out. As for shutter speed, let the situation dictate - you may want to freeze the action in case of wildlife or soften the flow at a waterfall with a slow shutter and your tripod. Hope this helps, and enjoy your trip ... Tony S
- Anthony Soares

ANSWER 2:
Brandon,
To add to Tony's reply, a cable release would be nice to reduce camera shake. In Aperture Priority, you can set your aperture to, say, f/16, and let the camera set the shutter speed.
if you only take one speed of film, you'll be stuck - 200 might be OK for landscapes and waterfalls, but for low light or fast action, maybe 400 or 800.
Keep an eye on the weather: Some of the best color and cloud formations are right after a thunderstorm.
And ask around when you get there - the locals should know the best places. Don't forget to carry extra batteries, and plenty of film.
hth sam
- samuel smith

ANSWER 3:
I would recommend that you purchase a 28mm wide-angle lens. Yes, the zoom you have will cover that range but a prime will serve you better. First, primes are better than zooms, especially at the wide and long ends of the zoom. Secondly, most zooms do not have a distance scale, which makes it hard to make use of hyperfocal focusing. If you are not familiar with this term, you simply set your lens at its minimum aperture (f/16 or f/22, whatever it is) and set the infinity mark at that aperture on your distance scale. This will give you the greatest DOF possible. Naturally, to do this, you will have to manual focus. Very little will appear to be in focus when you look through the viewfinder, but it will be. When shooting landscapes, try to have something in the foreground. It will give you a more dramatic photo and will put the enormity of those things in the background in perspective. For film, I suggest Velvia, as mentioned above, if you are shooting slides. For negative film, try Kodak Ultra. It is available in both 100 and 400 speed. It is fine-grained and has really great colors. It is expensive, but worth it for what you are going to shoot.
- Kerry L. Walker

Read this Q&A at BetterPhoto.com:
http://www.betterphoto.com/forms/qnaDetail.asp?threadID=15728

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*****


NEW QUESTION 4: Legal Use of Photo in Portfolio and Web Site
What are the "rules(legal)" for using photographs in my portfolio or on my Web site? If it was my shoot, don't I have the right to use those photos for my business? For example: hanging in a studio, posting in portfolio on Web site, in a book portfolio ... basically however I want, with the exception of selling as stock or to a third party? Can I use my work in my advertising without compensation or permission from the subject?
- Kristie

ANSWER 1:
Every session you shoot should involve the client signing a contract granting you those permissions. If you're not shooting paying clients, you still need to get that. That's the legality.
You can post anything you want. However, without people agreeing, you could run into a problem at some point. I'm not sure what the damage would be other than to take the image down. It kind of depends on the situation.
- Jerry Frazier

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*****


NEW QUESTION 5: Wedding Photography: Doing It for a Friend
I have been recruited to shoot a wedding. I am not charging for this. I have a Canon 20D. I know that these will be mostly candid shots. Do I shoot in JPEG on auto due to the candid nature? Do I shoot some in RAW? Since I am not being paid, my friends are not too demanding. I want to do a nice job but also enjoy the wedding as a guest. Any thoughts?
- Justin Baer

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ANSWER 1:
Justin,
Are these friends of yours? Friends don't ask friends to take photos at weddings!
Friends do offer to pay you a token payment for such events ... at which point you may accept the payment or decline the payment, or decline it all.
As a friend, you could ask: Are the photos a wedding gift? Give them a nice album with the photos you take. Great gift ... that's what taking photos at a friend's wedding is ... a gift of memories.
With the Canon 20D, that is a fantastic gift. Digital is great for candid shots and setup photos. Not so great for speed shooting.
Good luck.
- Chris J. Browne

ANSWER 2:
Are you comfortable processing RAW images? RAW images will give you more latitude, but will require more processing.
If you shoot in JPEG, you can do some batch processing to adjust levels, and have a book of 4x6 proofs ready by the time they get back from the honeymoon.
Since you're not getting paid, you don't want to turn this into a huge project.
As for shooting, if you're most comfortable shooting on Auto, then do it.
- Chris A. Vedros

See Chris's Premium BetterPholio™

ANSWER 3:
If you know how to process RAW, it sounds like it's up to you how much time you want to invest in this. If you just want to get it done, shoot in JPEG. If you want to do the best job you can, shoot in RAW. Also consider what size memory card you have. If you have any less than 1 GB, you should probably shoot in JPEG, so you can fit them all on there.
Hope that helps.
- Nancy Grace Chen

See Nancy's Premium BetterPholio™

ANSWER 4:
Make sure your focal length matches your shutter speed (or more) or they will be out of focus. Focus on the eyes. The on camera flash is unreliable. Maybe the couple can get you a 550ex as a gift for you to shoot professionally at their wedding. Light-meter their faces directly, or you may get highlights that will throw off your picture.
- Justin C

ANSWER 5:
You said you wanted to do a "nice job", but also want to "enjoy the wedding as a guest". This will not happen. So, just plan on either being the photographer OR the guest, but you can't be both.
The fact that they are not paying you really sucks, because it's going to be an overwhelming amount of work. Maybe they'll tip you or something as a thank you.
Since you don't have experience with this, I suggest you shoot RAW. Use the software that came with your camera to process the images (DPP).
Get a 550EX or 580EX flash with a bracket. Get it. Rent it, borrow it, buy it. You will need it.
You probably should take about 15 gigs of cards for RAW shooting. When you get home, download them to your PC immediately, and then burn 2 DVDs or CDs of all the images, BEFORE YOU DO ANYTHING ELSE! Once you do that, go to sleep.
In the morning, begin processing the images by opening DPP. First, delete all the bad ones. This should be quick. Just look at it, and if it's bad, out of focus or whatever, eliminate it. Now you have your keepers. Now correct the WB (just click on something white in the image). You can process many at a time doing this. When you are done. Batch them all to JPEGs in a separate folder. Now you can go through them and decide which should be BW. Make a separate folder for those. Then you can batch process all those at once using PS.
When you're all done with that, you can go through and add contrast and sharpening to everything.
When finished, burn a DVD/CD for them and just give them that. Since it's free, don't spend any money on prints, unless you want to give them a few just for fun. I would probably give them one really nice 8x10 or something if they were good friends.
Cheers,
Jerry

- Jerry Frazier

Read this Q&A at BetterPhoto.com:
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*****


NEW QUESTION 6: Poses for Youth League Photos
I am shooting the girls youth league - individual shots and - need ideas about how to pose them. Thanks.
- Scott Zimmerman

ANSWER 1:
I saw a friend's senior pic who played softball. She was turned at a 45-degree angle to the left with her left hand (with the glove on) under her right elbow propping her arm up, holding a softball up around shoulder height. Does that make sense? Basically, it's one of those "arms folded" poses but instead, one hand is propped up holding the softball. I probably wouldn't do this unless they asked for it, but you could add a flame on top of the ball like it's on fire for a slightly different touch, assuming you're using digital and are familiar with the digital darkroom.
- Andrew Laverghetta

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ANSWER 2:
Hi Scott.
I find that shooting individual shots is more than just photography. It's more like cattle herding. Finding the next kid on the list is sometimes very time-consuming. They have a tendency to wander off or even go home without telling the coaches. For these reasons, I arrive early, check the sun direction and try to pose the subjects so I get maximum effect from my circular polarizer. Parents are not interested in seing their child's shoes, ankles, knees, waist ... they want to see the smiling face. Advertisers, however, do like to see the jersey so I shoot from the waist up, focusing on the eyes. I have them hold a bat in batting position, and I have a ball sitting on a homemade spike I stick in the ground where I like them to look. Before I shoot, I tell them to look at the ball as if it was coming toward them with bases loaded and the score tied. It seems to work well.
Hope this helps.
Regards
Gary

- Gary M. Berger

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*****


NEW QUESTION 7: Intellectual Property of Photographic Concept
Howdy y'all,
Is there a way to copyright, patent, or trademark an idea or concept (intellectual property) regarding photographs? For instance, I know you can copyright an individual photo, but what about a particular style such as Anne Geddes or William Wegman. Am I allowed to take pictures of my own Weimaraner Dog in an identical pose like that of a William Wegman photo and sell it? I guess what I'm really getting at is that I have a concept of my own, and want to market that in the same way Anne Geddes and William Wegman have done. I'm an amateur, and they are the only two professional photographers I know :-) .
Thanks in advance!

- Christopher Ficke

ANSWER 1:
You can't copyright an idea for a photo ... only the image.
- Gregory La Grange

Visit gregorylagrange.org - Gregory's Deluxe BetterPholio™

ANSWER 2:
Christopher,
As Gregory mentions, you cannot copyright the idea or concept for a photo, only the photo itself.
You also inquired about copying a Wegman photo and selling it. There are plenty of cases where this has been done and the infringer has lost in court. I went to Brooks Institute in the 1970s, and one of my friends during that time went on to a very successful photography career. About 10 years ago, maybe a little longer, he was hired by an ad agency to shoot an ad. It turns out, and unbeknownst to the photographer, he was copying almost exactly an image from another photographer's portfolio. There was a huge lawsuit, even written about in the major photo magazines, and the agency and the photographer lost.
So you cannot copyright an idea and you cannot copy to closely other photographer's work with the intention of making money. There is another photographer shooting in the similar style to Anne Geddes and making money. But that photographer is not copying the exact photos that Anne shoots, only a similar style and that is the big difference when it comes to infringement. Is it willful intent to infringe a copyrighted work for profit? If you duplicate Wegman's image, that is what you are doing.
As students of photography, we all learn from what others do - and, from there, we develop the ability to generate our own unique ideas.
Good Luck!
- 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
Lighting for Commercial Photography: Advanced
Stock Photography

ANSWER 3:
Thanks everyone for the great responses. That was exactly the answer I was looking for. Just to clarify a bit, my photographic idea was not to copy an Anne Geddes or William Wegman. I was just using that as an example. I have my own unique idea and wanted to see if I could keep others from "infringing" on my style.
Thanks again!
--Chris

- Christopher Ficke

ANSWER 4:
Cris,
If your concept or idea is original ... and your photos are good, a market for your work will surely emerge. As to those who will copy your idea, there's no way to prevent this ... especially if it proves to be profitable.
Legally, they can't re-produce your photos, but they can add or subtract just enough from the original concept to create their own version of your idea. Just remember that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.
- Bob Cammarata

Visit cammphoto.com - Bob's Deluxe BetterPholio™

Read this Q&A at BetterPhoto.com:
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*****


NEW QUESTION 8: Selling Your Photos: What Do I Charge?
I recently took some 400 photos at a ropes course. The owner of the course would like to buy all my photos on CD. How do I charge, or do I only charge for the cost of the CD and ask for acknowledgement when he uses the photos?
- Lola May

ANSWER 1:
Lola,
I'm not sure what a ropes course is, so I'm having trouble picturing the images in my mind. I would imagine the owner wants to use them for advertising. Do they want exclusive rights or royalty free? Don't sell yourself short, and make sure you retain the copyright to your photos. Even if you sold them 10$ apiece - which is dirt cheap for stock photography - that's a hefty sum. There are a lot of sites on the Internet where buyers can purchase high-quality images for under 3$ but I feel this is a bad thing that takes money out of the pockets of pro photogs. Hopefully, some of the pros will answer on this. I know I did not really answer your question. I would not charge less than 50$ each for high-quality images ... Tony S
- Anthony Soares

ANSWER 2:
Lola,
Pricing your work is very challenging these days. Tony is correct in his comments. But there is another way you need to look at this. You have 400 ropes course images. How unique are they? How easily could another photographer come in and duplicate them? You should consider these factors in your pricing. If an image is very unique, it will command top price. If is run-of-the-mill photography and easily shot, then they are worth much less. This is called 'valuing your work based on uniqueness' and then determining the price. Clients know this, and if you ask too much money, they often hire somebody cheaper with the idea that they get the photos for any use they wish. Another factor is, "Are these really stock photos?" And would they command stock prices? A stock photo is an image you create and then find markets to license it to. There are no restrictions with a marketable stock photo. In your case, I assume you are on the client's property. Are there any of the company signs in your photos? Do you have model releases? Depending on your answers, you may not really be able to sell these images anywhere else, and in that case, any money you get from the client is good money.
- 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
Lighting for Commercial Photography: Advanced
Stock Photography

ANSWER 3:
Lola,
Just a side thought after reading Charlie's post: Regarding releases, after you have come to terms on the price, you might offer a bit of a discount for a signed property release ... Tony S
- Anthony Soares

ANSWER 4:
WOW! You guys are a wealth of information. A ropes course is a program that clients go through to build teamwork and self-confidence, pushing themselves and others past their point of giving up. The owner wants to use the photos on a Web site, in his office, and for funding and grants. The owner has not mentioned rights but I will not give them up. Some of the pictures are unique, and others are common and other photographer may be able to duplicate them. I was on the client's property and there are company signs in the photos. No, I do not have model releases. I have looked at releases on the 'Net, but have finally settled on one. Thank you all so much for your information. You have been very helpful.
- Lola May

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NEW QUESTION 9: Compact Flash Card: Formatting
After shooting in the film-based arena for five years, I have finally jumped on the Digital band wagon. I have a Nikon D-100, and I purchased a 256MB card to start with. I think my camera manual says that the card has to be "formatted" first. The manual shows how to do this, but is this a function that must be done each time with a new card? I plan to get more cards, of course, but is there a limit to the number of times a card can be used?
Thanks in advance for any reply!!
- Richard Jackson

ANSWER 1:
Format it when you first use it. Format it each time you download/delete everything off it. Use them over and over. They should have a long life. But like any computerized thing, sometimes you may get one that needs to be replaced. And format with the camera, not the computer.
- Gregory La Grange

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ANSWER 2:
I formatted my 1 GB IBM micro drive card when I first bought it (for a Fuji S2), and have never reformatted it since. I have shot thousands of pictures on it with no problem. By the way, I would opt for a larger card rather than carry around several smaller cards as you mentioned. Prices have dropped so drastically that a 1 gig card today costs what a 256 did a couple of years ago. These cards should have long lives, and you should not have to worry about them for the normal life of your camera.
Michael H. Cothran
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- Michael H. Cothran

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NEW QUESTION 10: Photographing Animals: Catchlights in Eyes
When shooting animals, I try to avoid "dead eye" with no catchlights. Some photos, however, look great without them. Are catchlights essential? What about a terrific photo with good eye detail but no catchlights? Is it permissible to "Photoshop" a catchlight in post-processing?
- Frank Brow

ANSWER 1:
Dark eyes will look better with a catchlight than without. As long as the eye of the animal is in perfect focus, a catchlight is more of a bonus than an essential element.
When shooting in a controlled environment - a studio setup with pet portraits - try to avoid multiple catchlights if you are using several lights or strobes. These are almost always distracting to the viewer. (If Fido will sit still long enough, you can position the lights to avoid this.)
As far as using software to add a little sparkle later, that choice is yours. If it's a pet portrait, the client probably won't know (or care) as long as the photo looks good.
If the shot is to be judged in a competition - where technical merit is part of the judging criteria - you should disclose any post-productions.
- Bob Cammarata

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NEW QUESTION 11: Macro Photography: What Type of Lens?
Hi, I own a Fuji FinePix S2 Pro that takes the same lens that Nikon will take. I am looking into getting an AF macro lens for myself, my problem is that I don't quite understand the 1:1 or 1:5 ratios of the macros and their focal length, along with the fact that I'm a college student so the newest/fastest lens is definitely not in the budget. Any advice would be great, thanks
- Julie M. Cwik

ANSWER 1:
Nikon makes three true macro lenses (called "Micro" by Nikon) in autofocus: 60mm/2.8, 105mm/2.8, and a 200mm/4. Each will focus to 1:1, meaning that your subject will be the same size on "film" as it is in real life. Which one you buy will depend on your need, desire, and the depth of your wallet. None are cheap, but they're all top drawer. The longer the focal length the more expensive they get. These are the only three Nikon Micro lenses that will function completely with all the S2's electronics.
You can also use any of Nikon's older manual focus Micros (there's always a slew of them for sale on Ebay), as long as they are either Ai or Ais. These lenses will mount to your S2 and work, but will NOT activate the S2's meter, since they don't have the necessary contact points. You'd have to use a hand meter in this case.
Truth be told, AF is not really a good thing in macro work, as the lens often fumbles around trying to focus. You are usually better off focusing manually with these lenses while working in macro modes.
I own ALL the equipment above, including the S2, and can attest to their quality. I use 30-year-old Ai Micro's for all my commercial studio work. Their quality has never been improved upon, and I actually think the latest plastic AF versions do not perform as well.
The second alternative is to purchase a third party lens such as Sigma, Tamron, Tokina, etc. They all make similar focal length macros in a Nikon mount (that will also fit the S2, and function fully), and for about half the price of a true Nikon lens.
Your third alternative, and for something cheaper to start with, consider some close-up lenses that you can screw into the front of your existing lenses. Often, they come in groups of 3, and can be purchased very cheaply. Their quality is usually OK, albeit a far cry from a true macro lens. They will, however, get you into the world of macro photography while you save your pennies for a true macro/micro lens.
Good luck.
Michael H. Cothran
www.mhcphoto.net
- Michael H. Cothran

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PHOTOGRAPHY Q&A - CONTINUING FROM PREVIOUS NEWSLETTER
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CONTINUING QUESTION 1: Setting Color Temperature
I just purchased the Canon 20D and love it. I was looking through the menu and instruction manual and noticed it has a setting for adjusting color temperature. It is set at 5200k. What do I need to know about this to start shooting with this camera? It was not a feature on the Rebel that I have been using. Thank you to anyone who comments.
- Michelle Prince

ANSWER 1:
Hi Michelle,
This camera and many others allow you to adjust the color temperature for varied light situations. The Kelvin Temperature for daylight/outdoors is 5200-5500K for normal midday light. As the sun sets and the light becomes very warm, the Kelvin color temp changes dramatically. Your tungsten lamps in a home are 3200K, much more amber than daylight and Cool White Fluorescents are roughly 4000K.

Now with all that, how to use the camera normally: Leave your camera set at the 5200K when you are shooting outdoors. When the sun sets and warms up the light, leave it 5200K still, so that your pictures reflect that warm light.

When shooting indoors, set the camera to AWB (auto white balance), and it will adjust the color balance quite well and give you normal-looking color. There are also some presets for different situations, like fluorescents, that come with the camera, and I personally do not use those because my color has to be perfect in my commercial work, so I use a color meter.

It is always good to run some tests with these presets, and check your results to gain more understanding.
Have fun!
Charlie

- Charlie Borland

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ANSWER 2:
Charlie, I will go back to Michelle's question: How do you set the white balance? You said to leave it alone or use AWB, but you don't do that because your color has to be perfect. When is auto good enough and when isn't it? Does your color meter tell you what to set (temperature)in your camera or do you compensate for specific temperatures? Warmer doesn't mean higher temperature, does it? Warmer light is "cooler" (degrees K) than "cooler light" ... right? How about those mixed situations where one part is illuminated with sodium vapor while the other is fluorescent?
- Benjamin M. Trapnell

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ANSWER 3:
Benjamin,
To change your color balance setting, go to the top of the camera and above the LED are 4 small buttons. You want the one AF-WB (WB for White Balance). If you hold that down and rotate the speed dial on the rear of the camera and look in the LED, you will see the symbols for AWB, K, and the other presets. If you leave the camera on AWB when shooting in different lighting conditions, the camera does a very good job averaging the scene. If you have daylight coming through a window and a tungsten ceiling spots hitting the wall and a big cool white fluorescent fixture above, you have three different colored light sources.

Color shifts in any direction are not always acceptable to a client paying you to do precise work. If you look through the viewfinder and compose your scene, the color-correcting ability of the camera may be influenced more by one colored light source over another. A person with a green face is unacceptable. I hope someday that they further the color ability of these cameras where they actually tell you the Kelvin temp of the scene. A color meter will measure everything precisely and tell you the Kelvin temp and what filters you would put on the lens (film cameras) to correct for the color shift. You can correct the same shift by setting the Kelvin temp (from the color meter reading) in the camera. You again hold down the WB button and rotate the dial until K comes up. Then on the LCD, bring up the menu and rotate through the menu to COLOR TEMP and change that to the Kelvin temp reading the color meter gave you. Now if you are thinking that the camera does that, you are right, so it depends on the shot you are taking.

Look in my gallery at some of the corporate annual report images I have in there. I love to use colored gels to hide ugly industrial environments. I put a blue gel on one light and a green gel on another and point them at the background and light my subject - say, a worker - normally. Now if I used AWB, the camera would attempt to correct the blue and green, and I don't want that. So I color meter where my subject is and make necassary adjustments for the light that hits the worker and leave the blue green to go their way.

Now you could also do a similar approach by using custom white balance right where your subject is, but I don't because I already have the meter and it is faster. Warmer light is LOWER in temperature, with tungsten at 3200K, and cooler light is higher up in the 7000-10,000K. When you have sodiums and fluorescents combined, you have to pick one or the other or average them and hope for the best, and often it is not perfect. Hope this helps.
- Charlie Borland

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