Monday, May 24, 2010

Quick Hit Monday: Rockin' It In NYC; Time For Video; My Head Is In The Clouds; and More

Good Morning Everybody,

We got into New York City late Saturday,  settled into our hotel, grabbed a quick snack and relaxed. I'll tell you, it's just what the doctor ordered.

DAZ BH Sunday was a Great day at B&H Photo and Video. That”s LaDawn, me, and my daughter, Elizabeth, standing among the crowds of B&H customers – the place was packed on Sunday. We had a full house and the program went off without a hitch.

Every time I give a program, I try to weave a few new things into the presentation - new images, a different take on a lighting concept, whatever. It just makes the presentation more fun to give and I think the audience enjoys as well. They sure did yesterday at 420 9th Avenue.

We are up here In the city this week for a little business but a little R&R. So before I get too long winded, let's get right to Quick Hit Monday. Here we go...

So What Have You Done Lately With Your Video Enabled DSLR?

It seems the new video DSLR features that started showing up on the latest Nikons and Canons have not been taken lightly by the video cognoscenti. Those who had the foresight to see and understand the possibilities of these new video DSLR capabilities jumped right on board. The onboard video capabilities of the new Canon camera is a HUGH initiative with the companies these days.

Video DSLR Look at what's happening out there - intro to the Tonight Show is shot with the Canon 5D Mark II, parts of the recently new Terminator movie also shot with the 5D Mark II. Now what were rumors are now the truth. The recently seen House finale was shot COMPLETELY with the Canon 5D Mark II. You can catch a few clips of the show right here. But, there are too many photographers that own these video enabled cameras that are sitting on their hands and NOT EVEN TRYING these video capabilities out.

Folks, it's all new to all of us. Most of us really trying to get a grip on this new camera functionality.  And we need to get our heads around it. It can be the biggest "differentiator" for our businesses! It behooves each of us to to embrace these possibilities if we truly want to embrace our future success in this exciting field of photography.

Sorry, end of rant #27. Just do me a favor, check out the Doctor House clips right here to see what video pros are doing with the same gear many of us own.

A Sensible ??? Approach To On Line Storage

You know, most photographers don't even consider on-line storage as a reasonable solution for our businesses. Why? Because we take too many pictures, and nearly all of them in RAW mode. So, what's the problem? Way too much data to upload.  Even over the fastest internet connections it would take forever, right?

That's all true of course, except when we take a different approach to back-up. Here is my suggestion/solution. Download your flash cards to your computer, back the data up in at least two hard drive locations, and then burn to DVDs. At my studio, we are even looking at the new Blu-Ray solutions since the Blu-ray disks themselves are dropping in price.

Cloud Computr LR This is all well and good, but it still takes lots of time and storage real estate to complete, and is quite a cumbersome solution. Let’s see if we can create a unique storage solution for the MOST important client images and maybe even create a completely new product for our client - “insurance” that their image files will be completely safe forever.

I recently noticed a new service offered by for photographers. Phanfare [link] has a really interesting proposition for photographers. How would you feel if you could safely store your image data in the "cloud" for only $199/year?

First of all, what do I mean by storing your data in the "cloud"? Here is the lowdown. Amazon has been offering their S3 storage solution for the last few years. I even jumped on board over two years ago to try it out. There have been lots of rudimentary solutions to get our data up to the Amazon servers, so I never really pressured it further.

Phanfare Now Phanfare comes along and makes it really easy to get your images stored safely on the Amazon servers - in the "cloud" as they say. I had a conversation with the president of the company, Andrew Erlichson, last week. He gave me a complete tour of Phanfare and it looks pretty exciting.

I've opened my account and want to run Phanfare through it's paces. Here is my first take of the service. All of us photographers deliver some kind of finished image product to our clients. We tweak their favorite images making them look great and then deliver the final result. For me, it's a beautiful album of images.

To get to that finished album, we fine tuned the images to their pristine beauty and then design the album in LumaPix:Fotofusion. LumaPix outputs the page designs as high res JPEGs, TIFFs, or even PSDs. We simply print out these pages designs and then send the pages to Zookbinders for binding.

DAZNOTE: We have a super good deal on LumaPix software and some fantastic add-ons over at our Digital Resource Center right here.

OK, here is my plan. Instead of sending EVERYTHING up to the "cloud", why not just send the clients final retouched selections and the album page JPEGs to the "cloud". Total data upload would not be that large or take that long. It may just be the perfect solution for long term storage of the "best of the best" client images.

Over all these many years of wedding photography, people have been concerned about the long term stability and fading of their images. Just look at your parent's/grandparents photographs and wedding album and you'll see what I mean. Heck, photographers today have an image stability problem if they are backing up their images on cheap CDs and DVDs. The good news is that these images are never going to fade when stored on-line.

Photos onWebThat being said, we could easily offer our clients piece of mind with regard to the long term stability of their images very easily with Phanfare's storage solution. Does that piece of mind, let's call it "Image Insurance" have a value to the client? I think it might.

What is that value? I think that's what needs to be determined. What do you think? I'd like to get your take on it. We are offered added insurance on nearly everything electronic we buy these days - just make a purchase at any Best Buy. You get my drift.

Is it time we offer "Image Insurance" to OUR clients too? I'm going to give Phanfare a thorough going over and will report back on their services for photographers. They offer much more than just a simple storage solution. Ill keep you posted.

A Few More Educational Resources You Might Want To Check Out.

Learning LoRes Never have I witnessed such an explosion of education resources on-line like we have available to us today. Sure, you've got DPT, Scott Kelby, David Hobby, and so many others who offer a tremendous amount of content and information everyday!

But the list doesn't stop there. The manufactures also want your eyes and ears to take a peak at their products and services. And, to get you in their doors, many have been developing solid content sights for photographers.

Here are just a few that I think are doing a great job.

Canon Digital Learning Center [link]

Nikon Digital Learning Center [link]

DataColor Learning Center [link]

F.J. Westcott [link]

Nik Software Learning Center [link]

B&H Insights blog (new) [link]

Lexjet’s Blog [link] – great resource for inkjet printing.

A Few Things Before I Go

Dave Cross Moves and Updates A Great Blog

Dave Cross2 Hey gang, I just found out that Photoshop Guru and fellow blogging buddy, Dave Cross just moved and revamped his blog. You can find Dave’s new location right here. It looks really great. Just jump right in. Dave has ton’s of info posted.  High fives to Dave!

Meet Me At KPPA June 20, 2010

Hey gang, I’ve mentioned it previously, but let me do it again.  I am extremely involved in our state photographers association (VP) and that puts me in the inner circle when it comes to the association’s meeting planning.

KPPA PPSS I have to tell you that we have a dynamite 2 day program for only $109 coming up on June 20 and 21. It’s called KPPA PhotoProExpo Summer School. We have Tim Priest, a phenomenal wedding photographer coming in for a presentation.  We also have Beth Forrester presenting a great program on shooting high school seniors. Add to that the fact that we have several hands on shoot-outs schedules with some great photogs (I’m blushing – me included).

Kentucky PPA also has planned a special presentation scheduled to show you all the new features of CS5 and Lightroom 3! So much information and opportunity for a very reasonable cost – YOU DON’T WANT TO MISS– check it out right here and plan to join me at our KPPA Summer School.


Hey gang, that’s it for for today.  We are getting ready to head on out and soak up a little NYC today.  I’ll plan to see everybody here for another very fine Technique Tuesday tomorrow. You’re going to love it.  See ya’ then, David


  1. David, I was wondering when you would address DSLR video. As an event photographer I see was to incorporate video into my work, to help attract customers to my photos. I don't, as yet, see a way to make any money from it directly.

    But I did get a Canon 7D and I am currently trying to learn the in's and out's of it so that I can incorporate it into my workflow.

    I hope you will have future comments and articles along this line.


  2. I've been using Mozy for online backups for 2 years now... 4.95/month and it is unlimited storage as long as the drive your data is on resides on a "home" OS, like xp/vista. I used to have a server at my house, but have downgraded to vista for just this reason. 2, two-terabyte drives, RAID 10, and it all goes to mozy overnight... just another option.

  3. David, it was wonderful meeting you, your lovely wife and daughter. I loved the program. Thanks!

  4. Hi Dave, I'm just an amature but I truly love photography. Landscaps mostly but since my wife is active with her Filipino Nures Association, I have been their unoffical photographer. I took the opptunity to lean from the expereance of different conditions. I enjoyed it much. I have been using Phanfare for the last five years and can say that they are a very good site to store picutres on. They have a very good album format selections and can add music to your albums. They have my vote for one of the best photo storing and viewing sites anywhere. Just my 5 cents. Roberto Medrano

  5. David,

    Good observation regarding data volume. Amazon S3 actually seems to have a solution for that. When I talked to them about this last year at a trade show they said you could send them a hard drive and they'll upload your data for you and ship it back.

    Requires one more hard drive, of course, but it's an option worth considering and if it works well then one could store all of one's data, not just selected images.

    But culling is still recommended - for lots of reasons, not just space savings :)