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Monday, September 20, 2010
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Q&A 1: Photography for...
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Photographing Sunsets
Brenda Tharp is always struck by the difference between the sun setting and the post-sunset glow. She much prefers the post-sunset colors and mood. Click here to read her sunset photography tips and techniques, and to see a beautiful photo of the Oregon coast.

Featured Gallery
Alaska Fall
© - Phyllis Burchett

Welcome to the 491st issue of SnapShot!

The fall color season is coming right up. Instructor Jim Zuckerman is already thinking about it, and best yet, he shares his thoughts in an awesome new BetterPhoto Instructor Insights blog. Here's a preview: "You will be able to capture the rich, saturated colors in the leaves much better on overcast days when the light is soft and diffused." Read more about fall color photography... ... In this issue of SnapShot, don't miss the Photo Tip, in which Brenda Tharp discusses sunset photography - including the wonderful glow that occurs just after sundown. ... That's it for now. Have fun with your photography! †† Kerry Drager†† Newsletter Editor †† Where is Jim Miotke? Follow BetterPhoto's founder and president on Twitter - BetterPhotoJim - and in his blog:

Jim Miotke
Where Is Jim?

Updates From BetterPhoto

Check out these two awesome blogs: BetterPhotoJim and Team BetterPhoto. What an exciting goal that Ansel Adams had: Create a masterpiece every month! Now BetterPhoto is paying homage to this legendary photographer with our Masterpiece of the Month Membership. As a Masterpiece member, you'll receive monthly assignments and private newsletters, and enjoy great discussions. How cool is that!?! Learn more... One of the cool benefits of being a Masterpiece or Basic member, a student, or a Deluxe/Pro owner is access to the BetterPhoto Forum. Simply click the "Discussions/Q&A" tab in your Member Center.

Photo Q&A

1: Photography for Church Directory

I have an opportunity to do the photography for one of our local church's directories. Just wondering if anyone has done this before. Do you offer packages? The previous company did not charge either the church or the church members to do this but must have made their money by selling packages from the photos they took from the directory shots.
Any suggestions? Thanks!
- Barb Rathbun

Hi Barb:
I am also doing a church directory this October. I am just starting to sell my work so I decided not to offer any packages at this time. I just set up with Zenfolio to sell prints so they can go online and view / purchase from there (saves me lots of time).
I am not charging the church for my time. They will pay for the cost to print all directories. They already have the software in place to create a photo directory, so I will give them one photo of each family and they will print the directory and assemble how they wish. If you prefer to do the work, there is software out there in which you can create the directory / print yourself. You can import a CSV file into that software from the church database if they give the file in a certain format.
If you can't afford to give your time away, then don't. Set the price / hours and negotiate with them. Don't feel you have to do it just because someone else did. The reason I did not charge is because it is my church and because I'm brand new to all this and I feel I have a lot to learn yet ... though John Siskin's course is helping me with that. He's a great teacher and so willing to help you out if you need help with lighting questions. I highly recommend his courses.
Have fun :)

- Pamela R. Frost

Thanks Pam!!
I have had one recurring problem with non-profits generally: If you donít charge them, they donít respect your time. For instance, I volunteered to do work for a local non-profit. I arrived to do the work, but they werenít ready. People hadnít been called for the shoot. They asked me if I wanted to stuff envelopes while I waited. I charged another non-profit - much less than a normal fee - and they had their act totally together. Non-profits get a lot of free labor, but they donít always respect that and they donít always use that labor effectively. You can always donate a fee back to the group.

- John H. Siskin

See John Siskin's Basic BetterPholio™:

Take an Online PhotoCourse™ with John Siskin:
4-Week Short Course: An Introduction to Photographic Lighting
4-Week Short Course: Getting Started in Commercial Photography
4-Week Short Course: Portrait Photography Lighting on Location and in the Studio

You're welcome, John, and good points.
Barb, what you can do is schedule out the times in writing and have sign-ups prior to the dates, and hand out appointment cards as reminders. The church secretary may be able to help you with email reminders too depending on the church. Also let them know how many volunteers you would need to help assist that day or days.
Hope that helps
Pam :)

- Pamela R. Frost

Thanks, both of you. I think sign-ups prior to the date and also reminder cards are a great idea as well as e-mail for those whose addresses we have. I know it's tricky with non-profits and a kick-back to them is as good idea as well, John.
I have taken one of John's courses on studio lighting and learned a lot from it. He even called me about light placement when I didn't understand one of the concepts. (You're a dedicated teacher, John).

- Barb Rathbun

Thanks Barb,
I try to make the classes as personal as possible and to make them fit the students' schedule. Online learning is great.

- John H. Siskin

See John Siskin's Basic BetterPholio™:

Take an Online PhotoCourse™ with John Siskin:
4-Week Short Course: An Introduction to Photographic Lighting
4-Week Short Course: Getting Started in Commercial Photography
4-Week Short Course: Portrait Photography Lighting on Location and in the Studio
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2: Good User-Friendly Editing Software?

I am looking for new editing software. Anyone have any suggestions on a reasonably priced user-friendly software program? I would like a lot of options but cannot afford some of the higher-priced ones I have seen. Any help would be appreciated. Thank you all so much, and I am so glad to be back! Hope to see you all in the gallery and I'll definitely be visiting yours! Many Blessings, Jenny
- Jennifer A. Lambert

Your best bet is probably the latest Photoshop Elements. It usually has a lot of the more popular things included. I was recently given the Corel Paintshop Photo Pro X3. It retails for under $100 and has a lot of cool stuff included also.

- Carolyn Fletcher

Carolyn's suggestion is good, Jennifer. However, you might also want to look into the FREE photo editing programs like Picasa (from Google) and GIMP. You did not mention your skill level in digital post-processing, but if you are just starting out, I would suggest to check the free ones too before you start spending the bucks on more advanced software like PS Elements. Good luck!


- Usman Bajwa

You can try to start with free software, but the complexity there will be that there is simply a lot more support for software you will purchase ... and, really, Adobe in my 20 years of experience is the way to go. Photoshop Elements is a powerful package that can do more than the manufacturer even suggests. Best to start there, rather than getting Photoshop for $700+.
I have to say, however, I think my course Photoshop 101 here on BP is far more likely to get you started with confidence than any book - even mine!

- Richard Lynch

See Richard Lynch's Basic BetterPholio™:

Take an Online PhotoCourse™ with Richard Lynch:
4-Week Short Course: Awesome Digital Projects: Panorama, HDR, B&W, and Toning
4-Week Short Course: Correct and Enhance Your Images
4-Week Short Course: From Monitor to Print: Photoshop Color Workflow
4-Week Short Course: Photoshop 101: The Photoshop Essentials Primer
Leveraging Layers: Photoshop's Most Powerful Tool
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