Category Archives: Flash & Strobe Lighting

My article in Outdoor Photographer Magazine

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I am thrilled to see the September issue of Outdoor Photographer and my article: Lighting Nature which is based on my eBook: OUTDOOR FLASH PHOTOGRAPHY. In May they asked me to write this piece on how to use a flash in nature photography and I was of course, thrilled and honored to contribute to the magazine. 
 
You have to buy the issue to read the article but here is a link to a Photo Tip based on the same article if you want to learn about flash photography outdoors here.
 
If you want to see my eBook go here.
 
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Studio Portrait of a Lovely Lady

I recently photographed my friend Kim and her husband and kids in the studio. This is the first image I processed of Kim herself.

This is what could be called a white on white which is a subject that is very light in tone on a white background. This would be her blonde hair and white blouse on a white background. Here’s the lighting diagram:

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I Photographed Rooster Cogburn

Recently, I wrote about stumbling upon the Lost Dutchman miner, of the legendary Lost Dutchman mine, while wandering the Arizona desert photographing and described how he posed for me in a photograph.

After that, I continued across Arizona and New Mexico searching for more great landscapes and flower displays when as luck would have it, I again stumbled on another well know western figure: U.S. Marshal Rooster Cogburn.

In case you don’t know who that is; he is the infamous Marshall who reportedly shot 64 bad guys. He is from Arkansas but his Marshall duties have taken him around the west hunting for the usual desperado’s.

His most well-known manhunt; was that of murderer Tom Chaney who had killed the father of Mattie Ross and was on the run. So Cogburn went after him hoping to capture and bring him back to Texas for trial.

As we drove from New Mexico into West Texas, we stopped in Sierra Blanca to gas-up and decided to get a drink. Having never been there, we found a small cantina and went on in. After 5 minutes I heard a loud ruckus and there was some fat old guy drunk at the bar.

After watching for a minute I realized who it was: Rooster Cogburn.  I could not believe it but told my wife let’s just watch. For an hour he was there bellowing and boasting before sitting at the table next to us.

To make a long story short, we struck up a conversation and I eventually asked him if I could photograph him on the side of the cantina building. He grinned and agreed, but pulled out his 6-gun and said if the pictures were bad he’d shoot me.

I promised they would be very flattering.

So we went out back and I set up two flash units with wireless triggers to add some light on him. I purposely chose the shaded side of the building and then the flash units to add light rather than fight the sun with fill flash.

He was swaying a bit so I used a shutter speed of 1/125th at f/5.6 and hoped there would be no blur. I thought the picture looked pretty good and mailed him one to some address in Mexico. Not sure if he got it.

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How to Extend the Range of Your Flash

Flash is such a great tool for all photographers, indoors and out. While most of the imagery I shoot using flash is fairly close to the camera, there is occasionally a subject much further from the camera and flash where the light from the flash just does not get there.

Flashes all have a set range where they can send enough light for proper exposure, but due to the inverse square law, that light reaches a distance where the light falls off. Think or throwing a ball! For a while the ball travels at speed for a certain distance before beginning to drop as that speed slows down.

Keeping all this in mind is important when photographing. Just how far can the subject be before the light won’t reach? It varies on many factors such as how powerful the flash is. The more powerful the further light goes. A Canon 580EXII has a greater range than the (more…)

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12 Tips for Getting Started in Professional Photography

You love photography and want to photograph full time by launching a photography business. Maybe you are unemployed or wish to supplement your retirement income or simply wanting to earn money doing what you love.

For those with jobs you may not want to quit the day job until your business is launched and earning you an income and enough income allowing you can quit that day job. Maybe you are unemployed and if so you can get started right away but be careful if your financial resources are limited.

So how do you get started? I have compiled these ideas into the 12 most important steps I believe are crucial to finding success as a professional photographer in today’s markets. (more…)

Posted in Architecture Photography, Corporate Photography, Flash & Strobe Lighting, Lifestyle Photography, Outdoor Adventure Photography, Portrait Photography, Seminars & Workshops, Special Effects, Strobe Lighting | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on 12 Tips for Getting Started in Professional Photography