Category Archives: blog review

The 2011 Big List of Holiday Gift Lists for Photographers!

I posted the 4th Annual 20 Photography Gifts Under $100 a couple of weeks ago  – and today I wanted to pass along to you more holiday gift ideas for the Christmas lights for blog-3photographer on your list.  If I’ve missed your favorite collection of gift ideas (or if you have one of your own posted out on the web) – please – just let us know about it in the comments below.

So – in no particular order – here you go:

5 Biggest Flops on Camera 47

Now that I’ve been writing Camera 47 for a couple of years and have hit a few milestones – I’ve tried to reflect a bit on some of the most and  least popular posts from the blog.  Today I’m passing along some from the “least” list  – if not for anything else – maybe you can avoid similar mistakes.low res rodeo for biggest flops

So – in no particular order – here you go – the 5 Biggest Flops on Camera 47:

  1. Angry Birds.  I have to admit – I was really looking forward to hitting the submit button on this one.  To my caffeine-saturated eyes – this one looked like a winner.  In all reality – it sits here as one the largest flops on C47.  But, hey, why stop here – there’s still 4 more…
  2. Turkey Cutting Video.  This little video saved the turkey from its yearly shredding at our house.  Heck – I liked this video so much – I’ve posted it twice.  It’s received little to no attention both years.
  3. Sports Photography article.  Rodeo, rugby, ultimate frisbee.  It’s managed only a few clicks more than the turkey cutting video.
  4. 4 1/2 business books.  Heck, no one read this post.  Turkey cutting was more popular.
  5. Not regularly hitting the submit button.  And the reality of this one is that folks like an updated blog.  C47 has had a few dry spells.

And just to let you know – you might find the turkey cutting video posted again at Thanksgiving.  Seriously – it’s that good  🙂


Bits and Pieces from Around the Web

It’s been a bit quiet here on C47 lately – so – let’s get back into the swing of things with a roundup of stuff that’s popped up recently on my RSS feed that I think you might enjoy.

In no particular order:

  • Bill Fortney was Scott Kelby’s guest on his blog – and all I have to say is that Bill is the real deal.  I’ve been reading his blog Pilgrim’s Chronicles for the last couple of years – and it’s great.  Seriously – check it out.
  • Dave Sareem (Photography BB) and Corwin Hiebert (Creative Mix and Craft & Vision) are launching a brand new website aimed squarely at “creative freelancers, sole proprietors, and small business owners who want to live the dream!”  So – check out clamorate!  There’s even a pre-launch price break – but you have to hurry.
  • Beyond Megapixels gives us 3 simple tips to instantly improve our photography.  My favorite?  #3.
  • A new site – 500px – looks like it could be very cool.  I should probably get over there and get an account.  Check it out – and let us know what you think.
  • And rounding out the list today – Pixiq lists 50 must-read photography books.  The nice thing about lists that are “must read” – you know they’re inviting discussion – and this one is no different.  That said – there are some great books on the list.

Review: Vision is Better

ViB In continuing the reviews of the Craft & Vision titles – I’m jumping ahead to David duChemin’s Vision is Better.

This is the longest of the titles – weighing in at 100+ pages – and it’s simply a greatest hits collection of 50 Pixelated Image posts.  And even though it’s possible to read each and every one of the articles on the website for free – this is still one to consider.


Well – first – it’s pretty concise.  Instead of sifting through a 1000 or so posts for the gems – duChemin has done the heavy lifting for you.  Second – this tidy pdf package makes it portable to read on your favorite electronic device when you’re away from the web – say on a flight between PDX and SJC.  And, third, duChemin has added a great portfolio of images to accompany his articles.

The articles are mostly in reverse chronological order (but not entirely) – so – his newest articles are generally towards the front.  If you’ve been reading Pixelated Image for awhile – you’re bound to recognize a few of the posts – but I found those to be a nice review.

Bottom line: There’s a broad spectrum of articles here – and there’s something here for most.  As you can get all of these articles for free on the web – the decision to spend $5 is yours.

If you’re unfamiliar with duChemin’s writing – a few posts to checkout include:

10 Habits to Better Photos: #6 Read about Photography

roadside sign-1

As I was getting ready to post this Habits article  – I dug into the archives just to see exactly when it was that I last posted to this series.  And what did I find?  #5 was posted in October 2009.  5 months ago!

I frantically started looking for some clever and witty excuses – and I quickly tossed out a long list of them – including: (1) my dog ate my hard drive and (2) we haven’t had coffee in the house since early October and (3) my ukulele needed new strings.

And since none of those fabricated excuses are all that good – all I can say is that I’ll try to get #7 out before August.

So, without further introduction – here’s #6.


I read a lot about photography – and, well, I guess I write a bit about it, too.  But, from my experience, few things have the bang-for-buck photography education that reading offers – outside, of course, of just getting out there and taking photographs.

At last count – there’s about a bazillion photography books, magazines, and blogs out there – so, if you’re looking, finding material should be pretty easy.

As for books – where to start?  I have a few authors that I read quite a bit of – such as duChemin and Kelby.  And there are topic specific books by a few authors that I’ve targeted – such as those by Clark and McNally.  Fortunately, too, all four of these guys have blogs – and are willing to point you to more good authors.

Magazines?  My three mainstays are Outdoor Photography, Shutterbug, and Popular Photography.  A few of the UK-published titles are pretty good, too – but they tend to be expensive in North America – though occasionally I’ve found one at Costco for a reduced price.

Then there’s blogs.  At last count my RSS feed points to over 100 photography sites.  Not that long ago, over two posts, I listed 47 of them.  You can find them here and here – and there are plenty more good ones out there – so just dig around – you’ll find ‘em.

And the benefits?  Well – there are more than I list here – but 4 include:

  1. Learn something new.  Few of us know everything about photography.
  2. It helps me stay sharp.  I find it’s easy to let some information go stale after learning it – but with consistent reading – inevitably I’ll trip over it again.
  3. It’s pretty easy for me to get comfortable in my “style” – but with a diverse reading list –I get exposed to other genres and skills.
  4. Gear reviews!  A favorite for gear hounds.

Blog Bits: Friday 19 June 2009

I really ought to be more regular on Blog Bits… but until then – here are some notes on what I’ve been stumbling onto from around the web.

And –

Have a great weekend.

Blog Bits: more of what’s out there…

Lately it seems that I’ve been tripping over some pretty good stuff out there on the web – so, here’s some of it – in no particular order:

Free Photo Mag: PhotographyBB

If you happen to write a blog – you understand the value of spam filters.  And if you happen to write a blog – you understand that it’s important to periodically go through your spam folder “just in case”.  Well, this is one of those “just in case” moments.  Back in late February, it seems, Dave Seeram, Editor and Publisher of PhotographyBB, dropped me a friendly note asking me to pass along a press release to Camera47 readers.

And I just found it – two weeks later.  Rats.

So, I encourage you to keep reading and to check out his magazine.  Articles in the February issue include:

  • How to Get Your Photos Published
  • Understanding Histograms
  • Photography 101: Concert Photography
  • Lightroom’s Develop Module: Top Ten Tips!
  • The Industry Insider: an interview with Mark Goldstein of PhotographyBLOG

The magazine tips in at 50 pages and is well worth the price tag.  Links below – enjoy.

VANCOUVER, CANADA: PhotographyBB announced today, the release of the 13th edition of the PhotographyBB Magazine Online. The PhotographyBB Magazine Online, now into its second year of publication has grown into a leading resource for beginner to intermediate digital photographers. Each issue offers information such as digital photography techniques, DSLR camera function training, image post processing tutorials in Adobe® Photoshop™, and RAW processing in Photoshop Lightroom™.

issue13_coverThe February 2009 release features techniques on shooting concert photography along with issues to consider when shooting in concert environments, a photographic view of skiing in Italy, and an article for the aspiring pro-photographer entitled “How to Get Your Photos Published.”

Editor in Chief, Dave Seeram had these comments regarding this recent release:

“This issue marks a major milestone for PhotographyBB; our one year anniversary issue. Our team has worked so hard over the past 12 months with their informative and thoughtful contributions to the magazine, and the reader feedback has been overwhelmingly positive. It’s a pleasure to be able to provide a free resource to the digital photography community, and to guide those who are just getting started with digital photography. All of the authors are avid digital photography enthusiasts who have such different perspectives on issues concerning the digital photographer, that we end up with a great mix of articles with every release.”

By way of download in either PDF or ZIP formats, PhotographyBB continues its trend through the future of free downloadable magazine distribution. In a completely ad-free format, each issue contains informative and educational tutorials for amateur and intermediate level photographers.

PhotographyBB Online Magazine is available for free download through the PhotographyBB Website at:

PhotographyBB was founded in Oct, 2006, and is a division of PowerButton Central (2004). For more information, visit the PhotographyBB website at: by email at: or Twitter: PhotographyBB

Lightroom: Vignettes Post-Crop Tool

If you use Lightroom – Matt Kloskowski’s Photoshop Lightroom Killer Tips blog should be in your RSS crop edge effects-13 It’s filled with tips, tricks, videos, and some great presets.

Matt’s Friday entry had a video comparing both of Lightroom’s vignette tools.  The Lens Correction tool was introduced in LR1 and the Post-Crop tool introduced in LR2.  Matt makes the observation that it’s difficult to get a natural looking vignette with the new Post-Crop tool.

My experience has been the same – and, in turn, I mostly use Lens Correction.  But after reading Matt’s entry and the posted comments – it looks as if a lot of folks out there are seeing the same thing.  So, I thought I’d just share a couple of methods I stumbled onto (through some knob turning) to re-purpose the Post-Crop tool.  I don’t have clever names for either technique – so let’s just call one Frames and the other Corners (witty, eh?).

I generally prefer Frames over Corners – but I include both here for completeness.

Here are the slider settings to create Frames with Post-Crop:

  • Amount: –100
  • Mid Point: 0
  • Roundness: –88
  • Feather: 0

And for Corners:

  • Amount: –100
  • Mid Point: 88
  • Roundness: –50
  • Feather: 0

Hope that helps.

As for the cars, they were part of a vintage display at the 2007 Portland International Auto Show.

post crop edge effects-14

Blog Bits: Wednesday 11 February 2009

And welcome to Camera 47’s fiftieth post.

I have a few shoots on the stovetop right now – but until they’re ready to serve – thought I’d pass along some notes from around the web:

  • Check out the “New York Photography Blog” – some great B&W images from the country’s largest city by Dave Beckerman.
  • And while we’re talking B&W – the Ditigal Photography School blog talks about creating high contrast B&W in Lightroom.
  • For you folks on the fence between JPG and RAW – DPReview talks a bit about Raw Headroom.
  • David Bergman talks about how he made his 1,474MP image at the presidential inauguration.
  • David was using the recently released Gigapan imager.
  • For you outdoor folks – check out the just announced Timex WS4.
  • Another Lightroom tip for you pano folks – a clever printing method from the PhotoWalkPro blog.
  • And if you lose your camera – Photojojo reports on the “I Found Your Camera” blog.  Bottom line – someone out there might be trying to connect you with your misplaced gear.