September 21, 2011

Book Review: The Inspired Eye, Volume 3 by David duChemin

Are you in a photographic slump?  Are you having a hard time creating compelling photographs?  Or are you too busy calibrating your gear with printouts taped to the wall to actually get out and shoot?  If so, you need to read David duChemin's latest e-Book, The Inspired Eye 3.

David duChemin is a fantastic photographer (one of my idols) and a great writer.  He has published four print books and a handful of e-Books through Craft & Vision in the last four years.  All of them sticking with his motto, "Gear is good, Vision is better."  David is full of knowledge and isn't afraid to share it.  Trust me, take David up on his offer.

The Inspired Eye 3 is like sitting down with David for coffee at your local non-Starbucks cafe.  The location is small and intimate.  Magazines line the wall to your right, the coffee grinder buzzes along while people chat around the room and enjoy their drinks and scones.  For some reason, you decide to sit with your back towards the entrance.  You notice David's face wrapped with beautiful window light.  The scene is a Kodak Moment but you don't want to pull your camera out.  Nah!  What David has to say is far more important.  You know his thoughts are important because your surroundings go silent two minutes into the conversation.

David duChemin discusses the creative process and imagination of a photographer.  He offers guidance through the discussion of topics; including quantity, risk, play, trust, imitation, and solitude; which are directly correlated to imagination.
"... Imagination is not merely the children’s playground out of which we grow to maturity. The imagination is the place in which we begin to make real those things we generally call ideas." 
- David duChemin, The Inspired Eye 3
Instead of buying your typical Starbucks drink today, purchase The Inspired Eye 3.  You will learn a lot about the creative process and your photography will grow.  See more details below for purchasing The Inspired Eye 3 and all of David duChemin's other e-Books.

Pages from David duChemin's The Inspired Eye, Volume 3.

Craft & Vision e-Books retail for $5 and are instantly available for download in PDF format.  Purchase The Inspired Eye 3 before September 24, 2011 (midnight PST) and save $1 off with coupon code "EYETHREE4".  Better yet, buy five e-books or more from the Craft & Vision collection and save 20% off your entire purchase with code "EYETHREE20".

If you have not been following the links throughout this review, CLICK HERE to head over to the Craft & Vision collection.

September 17, 2011

Putin's New Personal Photographer

Yana Lapikova at work.  © The Associated Press

White House photographers are nothing new.  Political personal photographers aren't recent trends in Europe either, however there is one photographer catching the world's eye recently.  In June, Vladimir Putin, Russia's Prime Minister and "Chuck Norris", hired Yana Lapikova, 25, as his personal photographer.

So why is the world obsessed with Yana Lapikova?  Because she's a total babetron!  Lapikova is a former Miss Moscow contestant and has some sexy modeling under her belt.  The media is questioning Lapikova's credentials and claiming she doesn't have the experience needed to photograph Putin, who may be running for president in 2012.

September 13, 2011

On Assignment: San Jose Bomb Squad

San Jose Police investigate an explosive device found in a house of the 400 block of Sixth Street, San Jose, Calif., after serving a search warrant on Sept. 13, 2011.  Photo by Stan Olszewski.

San Jose Police investigate an explosive device found in a house of the 400 block of Sixth Street, San Jose, Calif., after serving a search warrant on Sept. 13, 2011.  The SJ Bomb Squad detonated the explosives around 7:15pm.

September 12, 2011

News: Craft & Vision - Photographer's Community

Click the image for more information on the Craft & Vision Photographer's Community.

David duChemin and the rest of his gremlins at Craft & Vision have done it again.  Not only do they regularly publish awesome photography eBooks, they have recently announced a photographer's community.

Now you may be thinking, How is this different than any other photography forum online?  Well for starters, you have to pay to join this community.  Before September 30, 2011, the promo price is $89/year.  But wait... there's more!

September 11, 2011

Sky Cowboys - Rebuilding the World Trade Center

"You need to have a very unique trait inside, to go running out on the iron," says Kevin Sabbagh, 24, a fifth-generation ironworker known as Woogie.  © Damon Winter/The New York Times

The New York Times has a beautiful article discussing the relationship between ironworkers and photographers.  I could go on describing the article but I don't want to waste more time.  Go on, read it!

While you're there, check out the multimedia video (amazing) and the slideshow for captions of the photos.

Faces of Ground Zero - Joe McNally

Joe McNally's "Faces of Ground Zero" is a remarkable series of portraits of people involved in World Trade Center attacks on September 11, 2001.

I was originally planning on posting a top 10 series of photos from 9/11.  I also wanted to find some nice multimedia pieces sharing stories and experiences from people who were at the World Trade Center and the Pentagon when the attacks occurred.

Instead, I found a remarkable project by Joe McNally, titled "Faces of Ground Zero."  McNally started making portraits of rescuers, uniformed workers, and families of victims, in a three week period following September 11th, 2001.  McNally returned to his original subjects in 2011 to follow up with their lives.

Not only does Faces of Ground Zero offer amazing stills, there is multimedia too!  McNally's subjects share their stories from 9/11.  Listening to their stories, in their own voices, produces a connection simple text cannot.  This was a great idea for Joe to tie these video pieces into his project.

Awesome work Joe!

John Baldassarre, Lieutenant, Ladder 9, Engine 33, NYFD. © Joe McNally

September 8, 2011

News: The Bookshelf has been Updated!

Websites to Bookmark has been added to the Bookshelf, a collection of photographers, websites, and books, which I find inspirational.

September 7, 2011

Your First DSLR Kit!

So you've finally decided to pony up for a nice camera and start snapping those amazing photos you've seen posted on Flickr, your favorite blogs, the local newspaper, and magazines.  I hate to break it to you, but owning a DSLR (Digital Single Lens Reflex camera) will NOT instantly allow you become a better photographer.

It won't.  If that's your plan, this is not the hobby for you.

A DSLR will allow you have the most control possible over your images.  It will also allow you to generate larger and more beautiful files.  And it will suck all of your money from you wallet.

September 4, 2011

NCAA Football: San Jose State at Stanford

Today I shot the NCAA Football season opener in the South Bay, California. The 7th ranked Stanford Cardinals put the hurt on San Jose State University at Stanford University in Palo Alto, Calif., winning 57-3.  Stanford's Andrew Luck (12) was top notch and is a quarterback to look out for during the 2011 season.