A month in Mongolia with an iPad photo workflow

September 19, 2013 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Features 

This summer, for some reason, a friend and I drove a tiny Fiat Panda from London to Mongolia. Though I have a 13″ MacBook Air, I decided to take my iPad with me on the trip instead of a “real” computer. I also took a good amount of photography gear, which meant that the iPad had to support a fairly full photo workflow. This article details how I made it work, and what I found I could and couldn’t do. The good news is that, if you manage your expectations, and grab the right apps, you can run an effective post-production workflow directly from your iPad.

Shooting on the Road, from Gear to Workflow

July 17, 2012 by · 6 Comments
Filed under: Features 

Better gear won’t necessarily make you a better photographer, but having the wrong gear can certainly make it more difficult to get the shots you want. In this 3-hour Lynda.com course you’ll see my entire thought process as I equip and prepare for three different kinds of shoots. Through examples of heavyweight, mid weight, and lightweight shoots, you’ll see how I tackle the problems of choosing shooting gear, power, storage, and post-production equipment. You’ll also see how I strategize methods for carrying all this stuff. Discussing everything from tripods to bags and batteries, this course is ideal for anyone who shoots while traveling, and wants a better plan for selecting the right gear. Click here to get started watching now.

Turning Any Bag Into A Camera Bag

June 18, 2012 by · 12 Comments
Filed under: Reviews 

Hi. My name is Ben and I’m a bag addict. It’s true, I have a problem. For years, I was convinced that there was a single, perfect camera bag out there in the world somewhere. So, over the years, I have amassed an embarrassing assortment of bags. A while ago, I came to realize that there is no single camera bag that’s appropriate for every situation, which only exacerbated my problem, because now I have a perfect justification for owning still more bags. Alas, the discovery of Mountainsmith Kit Cube has made the whole situation even worse, because with the Kit Cube, I can turn any bag into a camera bag. This means my bag fetish is no longer constrained to just camera bags!

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iPhoto for iOS

April 6, 2012 by · 14 Comments
Filed under: Reviews 

It’s taken a while, but Apple has finally crafted a version of iPhoto for iOS. Of course, there are already lots of other image editing apps available for both the iPhone and iPad, so where does iPhoto fit in? This detailed review takes a look at iPhoto from the perspective of the more serious, even professional, shooter.

Photoshop Touch 1.0

April 3, 2012 by · 7 Comments
Filed under: Reviews 

iPad-toting Photoshop users finally have an actual version of Photoshop for their tablets. Photoshop Touch offers layers-based compositing, masking and retouching tools, and color correction, all wrapped up in a touch-based interface. The question, of course, is what exactly it gets you in the way of a tablet-based post-production workflow. In this detailed review, I take a look at the app from the point-of-view of the serious, working photographer.

The iPad, the HyperDrive, and the Traveling Photographer

July 28, 2011 by · 9 Comments
Filed under: Features 

Like a lot of photographers, I like gear. Lots of gear. Sometimes I think that I like gear because buying new gear is easier than trying to take a good picture. But still, I buy more. But when it comes time to actually travel somewhere, all that gear presents a bit of a quandary. The sad fact is: while I like gear, I don’t like carrying it. When traveling, I used to carry a rather full kit – lots of lenses, flashes, anything I might possibly need. But these days, even for extended travel, I tend to go pretty stripped down. Usually just two lenses, no flash, possibly a lightweight tripod. On a recent 3-week trip to Turkey, I decided to go even more bare, and travelled with only a small backpack as my only luggage – both for clothes, and camera gear. Needless to say, this presented a bit of an issue in terms of gear choice.

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What Will You Shoot On Your Summer Vacation

July 16, 2010 by · 1 Comment
Filed under: Features 

We’re well into summer now, and as you head out on vacation, you’re probably packing your camera. Or, if you’re like me, you’re packing four or five camera. Whether you’re just getting started in photography, or you’ve been shooting for a long time and have a closet full of gear, planning what to take, and what to plan for can be complicated. In this article, I offer some tips and advice on how to plan your summer vacation shooting.

Florence, 2009 – Tuscan Digital Photo Workshop

October 20, 2009 by · 5 Comments
Filed under: Galleries 

In August I had the great good fortune to spend the month in Florence, teaching a three-week photo workshop to eight delightful students. Held at the Santa Reparata International School of the Arts, this workshop was held alongside a number of other workshops including book arts, Solarplate printing, painting, and more. With the extended class time, we were able to cover a lot of ground, and with Florence and the surrounding country just outside the door we had plenty of shooting opportunities.

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Should You Go On An African Safari?

April 22, 2009 by · 9 Comments
Filed under: Galleries 

If you’re looking for a fun, interesting vacation option that also offers good photo opportunities, then you might want to consider an African safari. I was fortunate enough to go on a few different safaris last November, and it was definitely an experience I won’t forget. However, before you try it, you might want to know a little more about what you’re getting into, photo-wise, to better decide if it’s the right excursion for you, and to properly prepare.

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Death Valley – 2008

February 2, 2009 by · 6 Comments
Filed under: Galleries 
Death Valley

Every year, I try to spend as much time as I can in Death Valley. To some, this may sound a strange destination to pine for, but returning visitors to this web site might have already noticed my predisposition to Death Valley’s beautiful, unique extremes. In 2008, I only managed one week-long trip, and it was far earlier than I’d ever been before. Spending the first week of February in Death Valley showed that it can be as uncomfortably cold as it can be brutally hot. Unfortunately, I have not had a chance to sort through the images until now, one year later.

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New law for flying with camera batteries

January 3, 2008 by · 2 Comments
Filed under: General 

SLR Battery

For those of you who travel by air with your cameras, be aware that as of January 1, 2008, it’s no longer legal to put lithium ion batteries in checked baggage. From now on, all spare lithium ion batteries must be kept in carry-on bags, with the terminals covered. REVISED: The US Department of Transportation has clarified its rules. Small lithium-ion batteries – like the types that are used in laptop computers and cameras are exempt from the new rules becuase they contain less than 8 grams of lithium. So, you should be able to travel normally, even after the new restrictions.

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Khayelitsha Township – South Africa

December 16, 2007 by · 4 Comments
Filed under: Galleries 

Khayelitsha

In September of 2007 I had the good fortune to assist my friend Steve Simon on a shoot in South Africa. Last year, Steve published an exceptional book on AIDS in Africa, and this year he wanted to return to Africa to photograph grandmothers. In addition to its other troubles, Africa has been ravaged by AIDS, resulting in the loss of entire generations. It very often, then, falls to the gransmothers in the community to raise the children and maintain the social structure.

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Gear for the Road

October 3, 2007 by · 1 Comment
Filed under: Features 

Because different types of shoots require different types of gear – long lenses for an event shoot, wide lenses for landscape, etc. – figuring out how to pack your camera bag for a particular assignment or event can be tricky. But lens and camera selection is just one thing. You’ll also want to consider some other important factors.

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Death Valley 2007

April 30, 2007 by · 4 Comments
Filed under: Galleries 
Death Valley

What most people think of when they think of Death Valley is heat that leads to, well…death. With world-record heat recorded at several points in the valley, this is not an unreasonable concern, and so most people tend to visit the park in the winter and spring. I did this myself in April of 2006, and you can see the results of that excursion here. I had a great time last year and so went back this year in March and April. But Spring can be a very tricky time in Death Valley. In March I encountered afternoons in the mid-90s, while in April, I wasn’t sure if my sleeping bag was going to be warm enough, and many locations – even at lower altitude – were uncomfortably cold.

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Oklahoma, June 2006

July 10, 2006 by · 14 Comments
Filed under: Galleries 

When you’re racing across I-40 at 70 miles per hour, it’s easy enough to write off Oklahoma as nothing but a flat wasteland. If you take yourself off the interstate, though, and spend a little time exploring, you’ll find an incredibly varied landscape. From densely-wooded forests in the east to cactus-laden mountains in the west, Oklahoma sports a surprising array of terrains.

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Death Valley

May 14, 2006 by · 15 Comments
Filed under: Galleries 

While Yosemite may be the "crown jewel" of the National Park Service, personally, I’ll take Death Valley any day. Undeveloped, unpopulated, and unbelievably beautiful, Death Valley’s odd geography – valleys 200 feet below sea level, bordered by 11,000 foot peaks – makes for striking vistas and strange phenomena. This gallery of 30 images was shot in April of 2006 as I spent four days tramping around the park.

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On Tour With Don Byron

June 21, 2004 by · 5 Comments
Filed under: Galleries 
[Updated 12/11/2004]

Repeatedly voted Best Jazz Clarinetist by the readers of Downbeat Magazine, Don Byron fuses fierce musicianship with astonishing intellectual curiosity to create some of the most interesting music being performed today. Included here are photos from tours and performances covering the last three years.

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