Tuesday, September 21, 2010

California Coastal Cleanup Day - SATURDAY!

It's time for the 26th Annual Coastal Cleanup Day! This Saturday, September 25th from 9am - 12pm you've got the chance to participate in one of the 'largest garbage collection events in the world.' *Guinness Book of World Records 1993

Last year over 80,000 people volunteered their Saturday morning to take a walk on a beautiful beach and collect 1,300,000 pounds of debris. 14 MILLION pounds of debris have been collected since the cleanup's first day in 1985. 2009 Recap Report

There are a lot of sites that still need volunteers. You can find locations near you by clicking the links below. I'll be out on Stinson Beach in Marin if you'd like to join me! Many hands make light work so come spend a day on the beach helping out the oceans!!

California Coastal Commission
Marin County via the Bay Model
Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy

Monday, September 20, 2010

Advice to new Photographers

The most common question I hear asked at lectures is "My son/daughter/niece/nephew/third-cousin-once-removed wants to be a photographer. Do you have any advice for how to get started?". And most times the advice is "Don't quite your day job."... Care for more advice? Read on!

1. Shoot every day. Sounds like a no-brainer but people often forget that in order to capture a great image you need to be so familiar with your equipment that control comes by second nature. The camera should be an extension of your eye, not a bunch of knobs & buttons you need to think about setting every time you see something pretty.

2. Don't jump on the band wagon and buy all the latest & greatest equipment. Find a kit you like & stick with it. Upgrade as things break rather than when the camera company launches something new & more money will stay in your pocket.

3. Study everything you can get your hands on. Books by the masters, websites, magazines, billboards, calendars, greeting cards. Make a note of what you like then deconstruct the image for composition, light and technique. Challenge yourself to think how you would shoot those images differently.

4. Get a business degree. Images don't sell themselves and anyone who thinks they are going to be able to spend all day taking photos while someone else markets them is delusional. A solid business background will give you the tools you need to succeed.

5. Don't be afraid to ask. Ask for internships, ask for critiques, ask people to shoot with you. The worst they can say is no.

6. Don't let one person's opinion get you down. Art is subjective. No one liked pointillism or the Rite of Spring when they were first introduced. Now they are both classics because people were brave enough not to let criticism get them down.

7. Cull mercilessly and do it early. Keep your portfolio tight and clean and easy to navigate. It's no fun trying to sort through 100,000 images looking for a half remembered photograph.

8. Never stop learning.

-- Post From My iPhone

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Unending Bowl of Soup

It seems like I have an unending bowl of soup in front of me. The more progress I make with my "Great Cull of 2010", the more images I seem to discover.

To date I have eliminated 86,691 duplicate and substandard images from my image library. What is left is a healthy 10.7% of the original grouping. It's amazing how much easier it is to find the images I want, when I want them. I can't wait until I am finished... 23K left as of tonight.

And now I am off to dream of white sands and albatross, of soaring freely through blue skies to land on aqua seas far, far away from my computer screen. Tomorrow will be time enough to launch a fresh attack on this library of images.