March 2009

SO first let me apologize for not posting in several weeks. Between my job that pays the bills and a busy home life, my poor little blog has felt a little neglected. And I have had this guilty feeling every time I used a computer. But going forward I will be posting again on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. Today, I wanted to do a big mind dump of all the really cool articles that I have been reading over the past several weeks.

I hope you enjoy…

Photography, and the Tolerance for Courageous Sucking – Merlin Mann writes about being able to know you suck and that you will continue to suck, but over time all that sucking will start to get better. You just have to keep at it.

Build a Panoramic Tripod Head for $10 – For all the DIYer’s or people trying to save a buck in this economy, here is a really awesome guide to building a $1,000 Panoramic Tripod Head on the cheap.

Limits and Creativity – Ever wanted to do something but told yourself “my camera can’t do that” or “they are professional and I am not” or how about “I can’t do that because….” Sometimes what separates the few from the many is they don’t put limits on their creativity. Dustin Wax wrote a really good article about getting over the negative at

Top Ten Annoying Things That Photographers Say to Each Other – Plain and simply don’t say these lines to another photographer.

Backing Up Your Stuff – Anyone who knows me will tell you I backup everything. Whether you fancy yourself as a photographer or not, you must backup your pictures. One thing that people always try to save in a fire is their pictures. In this day and age, it is really easy to have several copies. I will be writing about my backup process and steps later.

Tony Robbins: Why we do what we do, and how we can do it better – Tony Robbins is an American self-help writer and professional speaker for over 30 years. He became well known through his infomercials and bestselling self-help books, Unlimited Power: The New Science Of Personal Achievement and Awaken The Giant Within. (Wikipedia) This video is about 23 minutes but I highly recommend listening to it while you are surfing the web.


Cloudy DayWhat is a fake picture? Some would say doing anything to the picture after it is taken makes it fake. Others think you can push as many pixels and that is fine. I fall somewhere in the middle. I do believe that some degree of correction or assistants is need to most pictures. But changing the color of a flower to match your couch might fall more into the art realm than photography.

Where ever you fall some degree of modification slash enhancement takes most pictures from being forgettable to WOW. Scott Bourne from This Week In Photography wrote a great post on how to make a picture better in under 90 seconds. Now quick heads up he uses Aperture a Mac only photo organizing/light touch up program in his article. But as a Lightroom user I was able to take many things away from his tutorial. Even if you want to be as naturalist, like someone who does not use deodorant, it is always learn something new.

Adding Pop To Your Images via {}


Your lens. You want to pay the most attention to to your lenses out of all of your gear. One can have the best camera on the market that can take pictures in pure darkness but with crappy lenses you might as well have a paper weight. Plus when you upgrade your camera if you have really nice glass(lenses) that is one less thing to worry about buying.

Gizmodo wrote up a great article about why your lenses really make your pictures better. With all the talk about mega pixels and ISO the lens is still the eye to the world for your camera.

Why Lenses Are the Real Key to Stunning Photos via {Gizmodo}


Here is a video on how lenses are made. I think it pretty cool to see how they are made.

Have you ever been in a rut with your photography? How about life in general?These are questions any photographer or person living has faced before.

Photographer Zack Arias posted a guest video blog on about these questions. It is a very powerful and personal video about his struggle with trying to stay fresh and motivated with his work. I think any person who is serious about their photography should watch.

So you have a DSLR, more than likely it came with a kit lens, probably something like a 3.5 – 5.6 18 to 70mm zoom lens. Now you are ready to go hunting and take those award winning pictures. But for some reason, your pictures don’t look as great as you would like. What went wrong? It is your lens.

Gary Voth wrote a very good article on his blog Gary Voth Photography about the forgotten 50mm lens. Back in the days of film the kit lens that came with your new camera was the 50mm. In the article Gary explains why the kit zoom lens are not ideal for people who bought their DSLR to take pictures of their kids. Gary’s article is not just for beginners but also for the seasoned amateur who just need a refresher or a reason to buy a new lens.

“Beyond their sometimes dubious optical performance, my major criticism of these lenses is their slow speed. Many of the world’s most evocative and best known images were made under natural light with fast lenses and film. Creating such images is nearly impossible with “slow” zoom lenses, which are harder to focus and inadequate for use indoors without flash.”

Why You Should Ditch That Zoom for a Classic 50mm “Normal” Lens via []

ZoeyCan you take great portraits like the celebrity photographers? You probably don’t have a fancy camera, ring lighting, $3,000 worth of soft boxes or your own studio. But even with a $150 point and shoot camera you can take great wall hanging portraits with the help of Darren Rouse from the Digital Photography School.

The Digital Photography School, (DPS), has 10 great tips on how to improve your portraits. Writer Derren Rouse explains why thinking outside of box will give you the wow factor in your portraits. He suggests changing your prospective, eye contact, composition and many more.

“Most portraits are taken with the camera at (or around) the eye level of the subject. While this is good common sense – completely changing the angle that you shoot from can give your portrait a real WOW factor.”

10 Ways to Take Stunning Portraits [via Digital Photography School] is your one stop photography related blog. It is my aim to provide photography related content to fellow shutter bugs. I am an amateur photographer who is learning about this craft. All the articles that I post on this site are ones that I read and think that everyone should read.

My format for this blog is to post an new article Monday, Wednesday and Friday. On Fridays I will post a video related to photography.

Please feel free to email me any articles that you find and think others should read.

Ultimately I want to help “close the creative gap” for myself and others. The creative gap is what you want your work to be and what it really is. This can be writing, video, audio, drawing, photography or whatever. And I hope to close the gap of what I want my pictures to look like at what they really are. This blog along with the vast amount of information out there will help but ultiately it is about getting off our butts and taking pictures.