Friday, November 12, 2010

It's Friday, The Request Line Is Now Open

Good Morning Everybody,

Heading Home San Fran We left California at noon and landed safe and sound back in Kentucky last evening about 7:30p.m. and were on our home turf in less than an hour. I went right to work charging batteries and pulling the gear together for tomorrow's wedding to be sure I had everything during our brief hometown layover.

We've repacked the bags and are heading to Detroit in just an hour. It’s not much time home before we head out again but the wedding celebration weekend should be tremendous. Next week slows down a bit and we'll catch our breath then.

The Request Line Is Open

Request Line I mentioned yesterday that today I was looking for a little input from our DPT readers on a few upcoming projects. Here is the deal. I recently had a meeting with Matt Kloskowski, Director of Education for Kelby Media, and all around super-nice guy about topics for a series of upcoming Kelby Training videos.

We are planning to get together in early 2011 and produce a few more "David Ziser" training videos. I couldn't be more excited. I'm thrilled with the feedback my current six training videos received on Kelby Training making them some of the most popular on-line.

Matt was looking for topics for the next series of training videos and though I have several topics in mind, I'd like to hear from you guys and girls with your suggestions.

Here are a few of my ideas:

1 - Composition Made Easy: Learning To See Differently

CompositionIn this video I plan to show five easy, repeatable techniques to compose your images for for maximum impact. To many times we find ourselves in similar shooting situations months later and just aren't able to produce the results we produced months earlier.

What's going on? What do we need to do, or more importantly, what do we need to see to produce results consistently? This video will give you your visual roadmap to more exciting images.

2 - Photographing Couples: Showing The Love

Engaged CouplePhotographing couples is more that just taking a couple to a park and shooting away. What do you need to do to make your images capture the feelings between the couple? It's a combination of many things - great lighting, sensitive camera technique, and romantic directing of the couple.

This video will show you how to do just that. The result will be a collection of images your clients will fall in love with. And, you will have a great time shooting.

3 - Photographing With Wide Angle Lenses: The Wider The Better

Wide Angle LensesWide angle lenses can bring a dramatic look to your photographs  when used properly. But, they can also cause some nasty distortion to the subject if we are not careful. Wide angle lenses are still a powerful tool in our photographic arsenal that allow us to create some very exciting images.

4 - Getting Your Best Photographs In Dramatic Locations: and the Not So Dramatic Locations

Dramatic LocationsSure, great locations make for great photographs. This training  session is not necessarily about wedding photography. It's about creating the dramatic portrait too. I'll show you how to create an exciting image in some awesome locations but I'll also show you how by using the same visual techniques you can create great images in not so dramatic locations too.

Anyway, that gives you and idea of what I'm thinking about. What topics would you like me to discuss in my upcoming series of training videos? How do you feel about the titles I've suggested here?

I sure would like to get your input. Why not take a few minutes and give me your feedback in the "Comments section" below.


Hey everybody, that's it for me today. We head to Detroit in just a few minutes so I've got to get moving.

Have a great weekend and I'll see you next week.

Adios, David


  1. I would like to hear from Ladawn. From a designers point of view what shots do you wish you saw more. What are you must have shots for an album. Some tips for that little voice we have in the back of our heads telling us to not forget these shots.

  2. While not a suggestion per se, I would like to support your idea #2 on capturing the emotion and the relationship between a couple.

  3. I would be very interested in #2. I find it difficult capturing the essence of the couple's feelings without them conscience about the lens. Subtle directing without overly posing is one skill I would like to develop. Also #1 would be interesting as in sometimes I can't get the same result out of a shot I did before.

    Overall though all 4 ideas of yours I would tune in to.

  4. David, I want to see all of them!. But here is the sequence I would like to see, as you cannot do them all at once.
    First - Photographing Couples: Showing The Love
    Second - Composition Made Easy: Learning To See Differently
    Third - Getting Your Best Photographs In Dramatic Locations: and the Not So Dramatic Locations
    Fourth - Photographing With Wide Angle Lenses: The Wider The Better

  5. David,
    Love these topics. I'm especially keen on the first two. Can't wait to see these sessions. Thanks so much for sharing so much with us all.

  6. I'd like to see a session aimed at posing, brides, grooms, couples and groups.

  7. Great wide angle of the Schuster Center! Great topics to discuss. I've watched some of your training videos and I really learned much about lighting portraits.

  8. Hi David,
    I'm interested in any educational video you prepare. Of the four you're seeking feedback on, I'm really interested in learning more about how you get Couple Love and Dramatic. Thanks!
    Olympia, WA

  9. I'd love to see them all! Each one seems to be a great idea!

  10. David, We really enjoyed your Boston stop for Captured By the Light and learned a great deal. I personally would like to hear from LaDawn as well, a tutorial of sorts on how to most effectively work as a wife and business partner to achieve the greatest results. Maybe a run-down on how your workflow is managed between the two of you. Thanks!

  11. There are many of us who are new to wedding photography that do not have the advantages of multiple lenses, additional lighting equipment, and extra assistants who want to learn how to take better wedding pictures. I would like to see you shoot a wedding or photo shoot with a new wedding photographer so we "newbies" can make best use of our limited equipment and often less than ideal wedding locations.

  12. I'd like to see the session #2 - Photographing Couples: Showing The Love.It's kind of challenging to take great pictures showing the love between the couple when they are aware of the camera.

  13. #2 is definitely the one I would like to see. For me the whole point of being a photographer is photographing "the moment" and sometimes it's hard to capture the unique emotion between couples.

    Btw, I had the opportunity to go to "Capturing the Light" in Sacramento last week and it was beyond amazing. I learned sooo much!

  14. David, 1st, THANKS for the new videos (I still watch the old VCR tapes I have of yours). I'd love for you to address a situation I deal with often in the south...heavier brides and grooms. How best to flatter them?
    Thanks again!

  15. Hi David, I love your idea for shooting couples. I have been attempting to utilise the loop lighting pattern, but having difficulty setting it up correctly for couples as they generally their facial axis point in different directions - any suggestions?

    Also I have noticed that through your book "captured by the light" you don't cover very much on shooting outdoors in full sunset, only in partial sunlight or night-time. If you can cover how you work in full sunlight I would sure appreciate it.

  16. Hi David, I would love to see you go through posing a sequence of images. For example, with the Bride and Groom, taking us through a sequence of 20 or 30 poses and show us how you go from one pose to the next. Or the Bride alone or the Groom alone.

  17. What about options when things go bad: rain, windy,winter shots,chilly days,poor lighting,uninteresting scenery.

  18. I would like to see a video about how the back end of your studio works. Mounting prints and framing. Do you sell custom sized frames, assemble your own?

  19. David,

    Great posts as always! A number of folks have mentioned groups and I would like to add my vote to that. For a Kelby Training video or even a post on your wonderful blog.

    With the holidays coming I'm sure a number of folks have been asked to do a family group portrait. I am not a portrait photographer and would welcome some pointers from a master such as yourself.

    Thank you for all you do!