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 Tuesday, April 18, 2017
With a brand new Canon EOS M6 (a great little camera) in my possession, it is time to set up the camera for use. Following are the 30 steps I took to make a fresh-out-of-the-box M6 ready for use.
 
  1. Open the box, find the battery, place it in the charger and plug it in.
  2. While the battery is charging, unpack the other items you want from the box. This is a good time to install the neck strap.
  3. Download and install the Canon Solution Disk software on your computer to get support for the latest camera(s). Canon Digital Photo Pro (DPP), EOS Utility, Photostitch and Lens Registration Utility are the options I manually include in the install.
  4. Insert the battery (after charging completes) and power the camera on.
  5. The date, time and time zone setup screen will show at the first startup. Use the Rear Control dial and Set button to update this information.
  6. Insert a memory card (don't forget to format the card via the tools menu option before taking pictures).
  7. Set the camera's mode to Av, Tv or M (some modes provide only a small subset of available menu options).
  8. Scroll through all of the menu tabs to configure the camera as follows:
  9. Shooting Menu, Tab 1: Image quality: Use top dial to set RAW to "RAW" and Rear Control dial to set JPEG to "-"
  10. Shooting Menu, Tab 1: Shooting information display: Screen info/toggle settings: Update #1 to select only Grid display and Electronic level (all options selected for #2), uncheck #3 and #4 (I may alter these settings later)
  11. Shooting Menu, Tab 1: Shooting information display: VF info/toggle settings: Uncheck #1, update #2 to select only Grid display and Electronic level, check all options for #3 (again, I may alter these settings later)
  12. Shooting Menu, Tab 1: Shooting information display: Histogram display: RGB
  13. Shooting Menu, Tab 2: Image review: Off (without a review display being shown and cleared, the viewfinder becomes ready-for-shooting faster)
  14. Shooting Menu, Tab 3: Continuous AF: Off (increases battery life)
  15. Shooting Menu, Tab 4: MF Peaking Settings: Peaking: On
  16. Shooting Menu, Tab 4: Lens aberration correction: disable all (I correct lens aberrations during post processing if warranted, though enabling CA correction is usually a good idea and if shooting in JPG mode, consider enabling other options as well.)
  17. Shooting Menu, Tab 5: Auto Lighting Optimizer: Off (again, those shooting in JPG mode might want to explore the results of this option)
  18. Shooting Menu, Tab 6: Picture Style: Neutral with Sharpness = 1 (Note: the low contrast "Neutral" picture style provides a histogram on the back of the camera that most-accurately shows me blown highlights and blocked shadows on the camera LCD. I usually change the Picture Style to "Standard" in DPP after capture. If shooting in JPG mode, selecting "Standard" is probably a better option.)
  19. Shooting Menu, Tab 6: Long exp. noise reduction: Auto
  20. Shooting Menu, Tab 6: High speed NR: Off (or Low) (Noise reduction is destructive to images details - I prefer to add NR sparingly in post. Select "Low" if shooting in JPG format).
  21. Tools Menu, Tab 3: Beep: Off
  22. Tools Menu, Tab 3: Hints & Tips: Off
  23. Tools Menu, Tab 4: Custom shooting mode (C1, C2): Auto update set: Enable (Custom shooting modes are great – see Configuring Custom Shooting Modes for more information)
  24. Custom Functions Menu, Tab 1: C.Fn II: Others: Set M.Fn button to ISO (I may make more changes here after acclimating to this camera)
  25. My Menu: Add the first tab; Register the following options for Tab 1: Long exposure noise reduction, Format, Date/Time/Zone (great for monitoring what time it is), AEB (found back up near the top of the list)
  26. To get to the Playback Menu, take a picture, playback the picture and while it is displayed, press the Menu button.
  27. Playback Menu, Tab 4: Highlight Alert: Enable
  28. Playback Menu, Tab 4: Auto Rotate: Off (always uses full LCD for display)
  29. Playback Menu, Tab 5: * resize: Enable
  30. Playback Menu, Tab 5: Magnify (approx.): Actual size (zooms to 100% pixel level, ideal for checking sharpness)
I of course make other menu and setting changes based on current shooting scenarios, but this list covers my initial camera setup process.
 
If you intend to mirror my RAW image capture workflow, this configuration would likely be ideal for you. While my setup is optimal for me, use your judgement to alter this list for your own needs and preferences.
 
If you can't remember your own menu setup parameters, keeping an up-to-date list such as this one is a good idea. Anytime your camera goes in for a service visit, the camera will be returned in a reset-to-factory state (unless you request otherwise). Your list will ensure that you do not miss an important setting when putting the camera back into service.
 
More Information
 
Canon EOS M6
 
The Canon EOS M6 is in stock at B&H | Amazon | Adorama.
Posted to: Canon News
Post Date: 4/18/2017 9:23:41 AM CT   Posted By: Bryan
From the Canon Digital Learning Center:
Choosing a lens to photograph the upcoming total solar eclipse in August takes a lot more consideration than the camera body to be used because the camera is simply a light-tight box that records the image produced by the lens.
...
Choosing a lens to photograph the sun or moon depends on how large of a sun or moon disk you want. The size of the disk is controlled by two things: your DSLR’s sensor size and the focal length of your lens.
Read the entire article on the Canon Digital Learning Center.
 
B&H carries the gear you'll need to photograph the solar eclipse safely (checkout will be available at 9:00 PM ET tonight).
Post Date: 4/18/2017 5:37:49 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
From Sigma:
 
Sigma 500mm f/4 DG OS HSM Sports Firmware v.1.01:
 
  • It has corrected the phenomenon that 3D-tracking does not work when it is attached with TELE CONVERTER TC-1401 on a Nikon DSLR.
* For this update, it requires the firmware of the SIGMA USB DOCK for NIKON to be Ver.1.01 or later.
* Before updating the firmware of the 500mm F4 DG OS HSM | Sports for NIKON, Please ensure SIGMA Optimization Pro has been updated to Ver1.4.1 or later for Windows, or Ver1.4.0 or later for Macintosh.

 


Sigma USB Dock Firmware v.1.03
 
  • Compatible with SIGMA 100-400mm F5-6.3 DG OS HSM C017.


SIGMA Optimization Pro Download
 
B&H carries the Sigma 500mm f/4 DG OS HSM Sports Lens and USB Dock and has the Sigma 100-400mm f/5-6.3 DG OS HSM Contemporary Lens available for preorder.
 Monday, April 17, 2017
Roger Cicala of LensRentals has created a "Random Photo Marketing Generator" to help camera gear manufacturers sell their products. The following are a couple of samples that were generated when I tried the tool:
 
Sample #1
Using space-age technology including multiple floating elements and the industry’s most accurate autofocus system, this lens can take your professional performance to new achievements. See the world with a dramatic perspective you never dreamed was possible. Capture life in a way you’ve always wished you could. Designed with the sports photographer in mind, our newest lens provides the edge-to-edge performance needed to take your photography to profitability. Like all of our products, this lens is in a class of its own.
Sample #2
We joyfully announce the world’s first lens combining all-metal construction with fully computerized assembly, creating a lens that will be treasured by cinematographers and collectors alike. Capture life in a way lesser beings have always wished they could. We have created a game-changing new standard in photography that will amazingly improve your images. We are pleased to offer the world’s finest wide-angle lens, featuring 4 really, really low dispersion elements, 2 aspheric elements, and our new anti-glare coatings providing unparalleled flare resistance while providing amazing resolution. See your surroundings with a remarkable perspective you never knew was possible.
We expect Canon, Nikon, Sony, Tamron, Sigma & Zeiss will be slimming down their marketing departments in the not-so-distant future in favor of the free online tool.
Post Date: 4/17/2017 2:16:26 PM CT   Posted By: Sean
Those looking to invest in a 400mm telephoto lens have a several options available for consideration. One such option available is the Canon EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS II USM Lens. And while the telephoto zoom is certainly a versatile option, opting for a 400mm prime lens over the zoom alternative will typically either a) give you a wider maximum aperture at that particular focal length or b) save you some cash (but unfortunately, those benefits seem to be mutually exclusive).
 
Before we get started, it's important to note that I wouldn't necessarily consider wide-open image quality to be a differentiating factor among the 400mm prime lenses in this comparison. While there are certainly differences, all perform very well. With that in mind, let's take a look at the notable benefits/drawbacks associated with each of the 400mm prime candidates.
 
Canon EF 400mm f 2.8 L IS II USM Lens

Canon EF 400mm f/2.8L IS II USM Lens
 
The Canon EF 400 f/2.8L IS II USM is the biggest, heaviest and priciest 400mm prime option. However, there's another "-est" descriptor that justifies this lens' price tag for many professional photographers – "widest." The 400L IS II's f/2.8 maximum aperture is 2-stops wider than most zoom lenses including the 400mm focal length, and 1-stop wider than the formidable EF 400mm DO IS II model. This lens is unparalleled when action stopping shutter speeds are necessary, especially in locations where the available light is less than abundant. Of course, the background blur at f/2.8 is noticeably stronger than it is at f/4 or f/5.6, with the benefit of stronger subject isolation. As you might expect, this lens is built for the needs of professionals with weather sealing and excellent AF performance.
 
Speaking of AF, a 3-position focus limiter switch allows focusing distances to be limited to a specific distance range - or to be unlimited: 8.85' - 23' (2.7m - 7m), 23' (7m) - ∞, 8.85' (2.7m) - ∞. Limiting the focus distance range can improve focus lock times and reduce focus hunting. Autofocus Stop buttons near the objective lens allow autofocus to be temporarily stopped. The Autofocus Stop feature makes it easy to obtain focus lock, turn off autofocus and recompose for a framing that places the active focus point(s) off of the subject.
 
The 400L IS II features a 4-stop IS (image stabilization) system with normal, panning and tracking modes available (Modes 1, 2 & 3 respectively). And while I mentioned image quality wasn't necessarily a differentiating factor in this comparison, the 400 f/2.8L IS II edges out the other two in most regards.
 
As noted, a high price isn't the only compromise one must accept to gain a wide, f/2.8 aperture at this focal length; consequently, this lens is neither small nor light. With the hood installed, the 400L IS II weighs in at 143.7 oz (4070g) with and is 7.68 x 13.8" (195.1 x 350.5mm) with the hood reversed for storage. While this lens can be used handheld, most will likely need a solid tripod or, at the very least, a monopod for comfortable medium-to-long-term use. Support/stabilizing gear necessary for long-term use will of course add to the size and weight storage/transport requirements when traveling with the lens.
 
If price is no object and small size and weight are not priorities, this is the ultimate 400mm option.
 
Canon EF 400mm f/4.0 DO IS II USM Lens

Canon EF 400mm f/4 DO IS II USM Lens
 
It's not often that a lens measuring 6.32 x 9.45” (160.45 x 240.13mm) and weighing in at 80 oz (2265g) (with hood) can be considered small and lightweight, but... everything is relative. Compared to its massive f/2.8 big brother, the Canon EF 400mm f/4 DO IS II USM Lens' size and weight are quite manageable considering its focal length and f/4 max. aperture, allowing for much longer periods of handheld use before fatigue takes its toll. This lens' diffractive optics elements allow for a very compact design that sports and wildlife photographers will especially appreciate.
 
The 400 DO IS II features a 3-position focus limiter switch with the following settings: 10.8' - 26.2' (3.3m - 8m), 26.2' - 8 (8m - ∞) and 10.8' - ∞ (3.3m - ∞). Autofocus Stop buttons are also included near the objective lens and allow autofocus to be temporarily stopped. Like the 400 f/2.8L IS II, the 400 DO IS II is weather sealed and features a 3-Mode, 4-stop IS system.
 
While an f/4 maximum aperture may not be considered "wide," the moderately-wide max. aperture combined with this lens' IS system makes for a very versatile tool that's reasonably sized for handheld shooting. Bird, wildlife and sports photographers will often forgo the f/2.8 maximum aperture to enjoy the smaller size, weight and price benefits associated with the f/4 DO IS II option.
 
Canon EF 400mm f 5.6L USM Lens

Canon EF 400mm f/5.6L USM Lens
 
Representing the lowest tier in Canon's 400mm primes in size, weight, max. aperture and price is the Canon EF 400mm f/5.6L USM. Note that I didn't list "image quality" in the preceding list as the 400 f/5.6L is no slouch from an image quality perspective. That a lens designed nearly 25 years ago can perform compete so well with the 400L IS II (released only 6 years ago) is impressive, to say the least.
 
The most alluring aspects of the 400 f/5.6L, aside from the focal length shared by the other lenses in this comparison, are its small size, light weight and comparatively low price. The 400 f/5.6L measures 3.54 x 10.44” (90.04 x 265.17mm) (with hood unextended) and weighs in at only 47.7 oz (1351g). While the 400 DO IS II is shorter with its hood reversed, the 400 f/5.6L's diameter is significantly smaller and it weighs 32.3 oz (915.7g) less than the DO II model, making it significantly easier to travel with and use handheld for long periods of time.
 
On the downside, image stabilization is not a feature of this lens and it is only partially weather sealed (a lens mount gasket is not present, but the switches and focusing ring have moderate dust and moisture resistance). The lack of IS means that notably higher shutter speeds (up to 4-stops greater) will need to be utilized to negate camera shake compared to the other lenses mentioned above.
 
And speaking of the sealed switches, this lens only has two: an autofocus/manual focus switch and a focus limiter switch with settings of 11.48' (3.5m) - ∞ and 27.89' (8.5m) - ∞.
 
Without IS and a wider maximum aperture, the f/5.6 model's high image quality combined with its low price will represent the primary reasons why photographers choose it over one of the other 400mm prime options as well as the EF 100-400 f/4.5-5.6L IS II USM (which features the same max. aperture at 400mm).
 
Size Comparison Images
 
While I mentioned the sizes of the lenses detailed above, the comparison images below will put those numbers into relative context. The first image (also displayed atop this post) shows the lenses in their ready-for-the-gear-bag form with hoods reversed (or not extended).
 
Canon 400mm Prime Lens Comparison Hoods Reversed

And here's a look at the lenses with their hoods extended.
 
Canon 400mm Prime Lens Comparison Hoods Extended

Summary
 
As I mentioned in the introductory paragraph, while there are certainly small differences in image quality (including sharpness, vignetting, flare and [less so] distortion), most will not consider IQ to be a differentiating factor between the 400mm prime candidates listed above. Instead, the significant differences in price found in the available choices directly correlates to the max. apertures available, the inclusion of image stabilization and (to some extent) the amount of weather sealing featured in the lens' design. Ultimately, your max. aperture needs, size/weight requirements and budget limitations will be the most important factors in determining which of these lenses is the ideal addition for your kit.
 
Purchase Links
 
Canon EF 400mm f/2.8L IS II USM Lens – B&H | Amazon | Adorama
Canon EF 400mm f/4 DO IS II USM Lens – B&H | Amazon | Adorama
Canon EF 400mm f/5.6L USM Lens – B&H | Amazon | Adorama
 
Rental Links
 
Canon EF 400mm f/2.8L IS II USM Lens – LensRentals | LensProToGo
Canon EF 400mm f/4 DO IS II USM Lens – LensRentals | LensProToGo
Canon EF 400mm f/5.6L USM Lens – LensRentals | LensProToGo
Posted to: Canon News
Post Date: 4/17/2017 8:59:46 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
 Sunday, April 16, 2017
B&H has the E-Image 2-Stage Aluminum Tripod with GH03 Head available for $169.00 with free shipping. Regularly $249.00.
 
Product Highlights
 
  • Supports Up to 11 Pounds
  • 75mm Ball/Bowl
  • GA752 2-Stage Legs with Mono-Lock Design
  • 26–61" Tripod Legs Height Range
  • Easy Lock Baseplate
  • Fixed Counterbalance
  • Variable Fluid Pan & Tilt Drag
  • 1/4"-20 Threaded Accessory Socket
  • Padded Bag with Shoulder Strap
Post Date: 4/16/2017 6:16:34 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
 Friday, April 14, 2017
From the Professional Photographers of America:
 
Time to Act: Contact Your Representative Today!
 
There's a bill in the House of Representatives that needs our attention now!
 
H.R. 1695 allows the position of Register of Copyrights to become a Presidential Appointee, picked from a list of recommendations from the Senate.* This is positive for all photographers, ensuring that someone with ample knowledge of I.P. and the Copyright world will lead the U.S. Copyright Office in an unbiased manner as it begins to undergo the modernization process. This bi-partisan bill will help guarantee that the Copyright Office will be able to serve all creative artists the way it was designed to.
 
Please take 30 seconds to ask your representative to support HR 1695.
 
Send a Letter to Congress
 
Additional Info
 
Note: And while you're at it, you may want to send a second letter to your representative expressing support for Net Neutrality. [Sean]
 
* In PPA's original publication, they mentioned that the list of recommendations would be provided by the "Judiciary." However, my understaning of the resolution is that the recommendation list would be provided by the Senate. [Sean]
Post Date: 4/14/2017 2:40:38 PM CT   Posted By: Sean
From the TheImagingAlliance:
By Jackie Augustine
 
Premium drones drive steady sales, while lower cost drones fly off shelves during the holidays
 
Port Washington, NY, April 10, 2017 – According to global information provider, The NPD Group, U.S. dollar sales of drones more than doubled in the 12 months ending February 2017, with a 117 percent increase year-over-year. While premium drones (priced $300+) fueled revenue growth, increased distribution and assortment during the holiday season helped drive unit demand for drones priced between $50- $100.
 
During the first two months of 2017, drones with a price tag over $300 drove 84 percent of dollar sales and nearly 40 percent of unit sales. According to NPD’s Store-Level Enabled Retail Tracking data, in that time period, drones sold for $1,000+ saw the highest rate of sales, which identifies the fastest turning products, while drones sold between $300 and $500 had the second highest rate. When comparing items sold in the $300-$500 price range, there is a clear consumer demand for premium features. Drones with auto pilot capabilities sold nearly five times more quickly than drones without, while drones that feature follow mode functionality, which programs the drone to follow the user, sold 19x more quickly than drones without (two months ending February 2017).
Read the entire article on the TheImagingAlliance.
 
Ready to pick up a drone for yourself? B&H carries a wide assortment of drones.
Category: Drone News
Post Date: 4/14/2017 11:06:47 AM CT   Posted By: Sean

 
From the Adobe Photoshop Lightroom YouTube Channel:
 
Lightroom tips and tricks in 60 seconds or less from longtime Lightroom team member Benjamin Warde.
 
B&H carries Adobe Photography Plan subscriptions.
Post Date: 4/14/2017 6:44:19 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
 Thursday, April 13, 2017
by Sean Setters
 
Are you curious to know how awesome your image is? Would you trust a computer algorithm to judge the merits your photo?
 
The developers at EveryPixel have created a tool to distinguish good stock photos from not-so-good ones.
 
From EveryPixel:
We are building a stock image search engine. And we want it to be the best search tool for stock image users ever. At the moment we can search across hundreds of millions of stock images and unfortunately not all of them are great. Far from it. And this is where our aesthetic detector comes in handy. There are two very important tasks it can accomplish:
 
1. Automatic Image Curation
Neural network would estimate a visual quality of every image and apply aesthetic score to every file. Later on this data would take part in the overall mix of ranking factors and help improve search results by bringing aesthetically better images to the first pages.
 
2. Bad Stock Image Terminator
There are lots and lots of unforgivingly bad stock photos. Neural network would detect photos with the lowest aesthetic score and literally weed them out from the search results.
For fun, I uploaded a few photos from my most recent portrait session. One of the images (seen atop this article) was rated very highly by the tool, while others from the same session were determined to have a much lower probability of awesomeness.
 
EveryPixel Neural Network Awesomeness Image Analyzer 2

EveryPixel Neural Network Awesomeness Image Analyzer 3

While there is certainly some entertainment value in uploading a few images to the tool to see how they score, the real beauty of this neural network analyzer is its ability to fairly accurately generate key words/tags for your images. Using the suggested tags when uploading images to your preferred social media platform may prove extremely beneficial in allowing your work to be found by those who should be most interested in seeing them.
Amazon has the Adobe Photoshop Elements 15 & Premiere Elements 15 available for $74.99. Regularly $124.99.
 
Note: This is a Gold Box Deal of the Day, but sometimes the deals expire before the end of the day. If interested in taking advantage of this deal, get it now while you can. [Sean]
 
Product Highlights
 
  • Turn frowns upside down Transform frowns into smiles, adjust squinting eyes and make other quick tweaks, so everyone in your photos looks their best.
  • Guided Edits for help along the way Photoshop Elements offers 45 Guided Edits that step you through to fantastic results.
  • Picture incredible text Get step-by-step help turning a photo into cool visual text and then adding an embossed look and drop shadows to really make it pop. Great for collages, scrapbook pages, cards, signs, and more.
  • System Requirement Note: Only compatible with 64-bit processors
Post Date: 4/13/2017 7:56:41 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
From Canon:
 
Firmware Version 1.0.4 incorporates the following fixes and improvements:
 
  • Fixes a phenomenon in which a red-colored area may appear at the bottom-center of a captured image when shooting in bulb mode or during a long exposure.
  • Fixes a phenomenon in which the autofocus may not respond when the autofocus is initiated via pressing the shutter button, the AF-ON button or the AE lock button when configured in the custom control menu.
  • Enhances the reliability of communications between the camera and SD card.
  • Fixes incorrect wording on the Finnish language menu screen.
Download: Canon EOS 5D Mark IV Firmware v.1.0.4
 
B&H carries the Canon EOS 5D Mark IV.
Posted to: Canon News
Post Date: 4/13/2017 7:42:41 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
by Sean Setters
 
Not long ago we posted a video where photographer Jordan Matter used shop window lights for downtown nighttime portraiture. I thought it'd be fun to try my hand at some nighttime portraits using whatever light that downtown Savannah, GA had to offer and see if there were any additional lessons I could learn along the way. I contacted a local model I've worked with on a few occasions, Hunter, and asked if she'd like to experiment with downtown portraiture; she readily agreed. The following are a few things I took away from the downtown session.
 
Trustees Theater Entrance Savannah,GA

1. Finding sufficiently bright shop window light can be tough, but alternative downtown lighting options may be available.
 
I typically rely on off-camera flash for portrait lighting, but I was determined not to on this occasion. My goal was to use whatever light I could find in downtown Savannah for creating the portraits. Knowing a thing or two about downtown Savannah, we chose Broughton Street as the most likely candidate for finding brightly lit shop windows.
 
Unfortunately, while there were some shop windows that were somewhat well lit, I wouldn't consider them sufficiently well lit for my preferred portrait exposure parameters. However, the lights in front of the Trustees Theater proved more than sufficient from a brightness perspective. And even though all of the lights were positioned overhead, the huge area that the lights occupied created a very soft light that proved very flattering for portraiture.
 
Hunter Downtown Nighttime Portrait 2

2. A very wide aperture and a relatively close subject may not be enough to completely eliminate background distractions.
 
While the Trustees Theater may have been perfect from an illumination standpoint, it proved problematic from another standpoint as it located next door to one of the most popular hangouts in Savannah, Leopold's Ice Cream shop. The theater's location combined with its proximity to a busy ice cream shop (with a long line of customers snaking out the door) meant that we had to pause numerous times so that nearby pedestrians could move out (or farther out) of the frame. However, it wasn't until I was reviewing the images later that I realized that the chairs outside Leopold's were a bit too distracting for my taste. It's true that I could have used an even wider aperture (I used an f/1.6 aperture in the image above), but... I'm not sure just how much that would have helped. Of course, choosing a different framing could have eliminated the distraction, but one of the points of using a wide aperture was to create enough blur to render background elements unrecognizable. No matter, care should always be taken to ensure that background elements do not detract from the main subject.
 
Hunter Downtown Nighttime Portrait 1

3. You will likely need a confident subject if shooting in populated areas.
 
If shooting along a busy street, you'll want to make sure your subject is confident enough to deal with the attention that he/she will inevitably garner. Thankfully, Hunter proved quite adept at dealing with the attention of passersby without missing a beat. However, a less confident subject may require scheduling similar downtown shoots during a less busy weekday evening and/or at a less popular location.
 
Hunter Downtown Nighttime Portrait 5

4. Always remember to us a white/color balance target.
 
I was actually on my way back to my parking space after the session when I realized I had forgotten to capture an image of the X-Rite ColorChecker Passport under the neon lights of the Trustees Theater entrance. Not wanting to turn around and walk the three blocks back to the theater, I reasoned that I could get the color balance "close enough" in post without it. However, being red-green colorblind and without any great color-neutral objects in the frame, color balance became nearly impossible for me. In fact, I had to return to the same location the following evening to take a picture if the color target in order to get a decent skin tone in the images.
 
Note that because the neon light of the theater entrance was a vastly different color than the lights illuminating the street and surroundings, the background light took on a noticeably reddish hue. And while that hue may not be what I had imagined when setting up the shoot, the important thing is that the skin tones have an appealing warmth to them and the hue even makes the background look a little more interesting to me.
 
You may not be colorblind like me, but shooting a color target can help automate the sometimes tedious process of color balancing. It's definitely made my life easier (when I remember to use it).
 
Hunter Downtown Nighttime Portrait 4

5. I won't be giving up my flashes anytime soon.
 
While I thoroughly enjoyed the convenience of this shoot, with the ability to simply set my exposure, position the subject and snap away, I felt more than a little "boxed-in" by having to limit myself to shooting in a single location and pointed in a single direction (the direction with the most interesting, street light illuminated background). A small off-camera flash setup consisting of two flashes, one (or two) foldable soft boxes, radio triggers and color gels would have allowed me to get similarly-lit results anywhere (or I could have used a single light - possibly with a reflector - as the main source and a rim/hair light behind the subject). This setup would have been more cumbersome overall, but it would have also provided more flexibility.
 
Final Thoughts
 
Education is the key to understanding what's possible. Experience teaches us how to deal with the unexpected, giving us the confidence to react and think on our feet. If you come across an idea that sparks your interest, grab your camera and try to replicate the results and/or put your unique spin on the concept. By doing this over and over again, you'll gain the experience needed not only to recognize but to make the most out of the opportunities that abound for the inspired photographer.
Post Date: 4/13/2017 6:48:54 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
B&H has the DJI Phantom 3 4K Quadcopter available for $599.00 with free expedited shipping. Regularly $799.00.
 
Product Highlights
 
  • 24 fps DCI 4K / 30 fps UHD 4K
  • Camera Takes 12MP Still Photos
  • Wi-Fi Extender with 3900' Range
  • DJI Go App for iOS / Android
  • Home and Course Lock Flight Modes
  • Follow Me / Waypoint Navigation
  • Point of Interest Orbit Mode
  • Vision Sensor for Indoor Flight
  • Up to 25 Minutes Flying Time
  • Mobile Device Holder Included
Post Date: 4/13/2017 6:44:55 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
B&H has the G-Technology G-RAID mini 1TB Dual-Drive Storage System available for $99.95 with free shipping. Regularly $199.95.
 
Product Highlights
 
  • G-RAID Dual-Drive Storage System
  • 1TB Storage Capacity
  • 2 x FireWire 800 Interfaces
  • 1 x USB 3.0 / 2.0 Interface
  • 16MB Cache per Drive
  • Preformatted HFS+ for Mac
  • Mac / Windows Compatible
Post Date: 4/13/2017 6:11:21 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
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