orthopedic pain management

Should I ditch photography School?

Recently on our pho­tog­ra­phy forum this ques­tion (To go or not to go to pho­tog­ra­phy school) was brought up by forum mem­ber kat. She won­dered whether it was worth it to take a pho­tog­ra­phy pro­gram at the uni­ver­sity level.

It’s a very inter­est­ing ques­tion and it brought me back to my own uni­ver­sity days and reminded me of some­thing a sta­tis­tics pro­fes­sor once told me. He said that the WORST thing you can do (ON AVERAGE for the aver­age per­son) for your life­time earn­ings is to go to uni­ver­sity. This is because while you are going into uni­ver­sity you are rack­ing up debt and not mak­ing money. Obvi­ously for pro­fes­sional degrees (account­ing, med­i­cine, law etc.) there is no other way, but pho­tog­ra­phy is dif­fer­ent. You can either go to pho­tog­ra­phy school or learn pho­tog­ra­phy by your­self, online, by tak­ing work­shops, appren­tic­ing etc.

As for myself, I did go to pho­tog­ra­phy school and com­pleted a 2.5 year pro­gram after uni­ver­sity in the mid 90’s. I don’t regret it one bit, I love knowl­edge and photo school trained my eye quite well.

How­ever — If I were in this posi­tion today would I do the same thing?.…Honestly, I doubt I would.

The world these days is dig­i­tal, and there’s SO much excel­lent online learn­ing that wasn’t there when I stud­ied, plus the dark­room work that was so impor­tant then, has been replaced by digital.

I really think I’d rec­om­mend work­shops and self-learning over a full on pro­gram that takes 2–3 years. Keep in mind that AFTER the 2–3 years nobody will be wait­ing to give you a job, you will have to hus­tle BIG TIME and mar­ket your­self‚ BIG TIME..or else, on aver­age you will fail.

Another sober­ing stat from back in the day is that 2 years AFTER grad­u­at­ing from pho­tog­ra­phy school, only 20–25% of the grad­u­ates will be work­ing pho­tog­ra­phers. That stat still seems accu­rate to me today based on what I‚ see.

So what do you think — Is pho­tog­ra­phy school a waste of time?

74 — Hyperfocal distance — How to use the hyperfocal distance

Pho­tog­ra­phy pod­cast #74 is all about the hyper­fo­cal dis­tance and how to use it in land­scape pho­tog­ra­phy. In a nut­shell, hyper­fo­cal dis­tance is the dis­tance you focus at to get greater depth of field when focus­ing on an object in the dis­tance. In this pod­cast we define what hyper­fo­cal dis­tance is and how to use it for both tra­di­tional (film) pho­tog­ra­phy and in dig­i­tal pho­tog­ra­phy with new DSLRs and lenses.‚ We also talk about when not to use the hyper­fo­cal dis­tance in land­scape photography.

Hyperfocal distance chart

Hyper­fo­cal dis­tance chart from dofmaster.com — used by per­mis­sion; thanks Don Flem­ing!‚ This beau­ti­ful appli­ca­tion from the dofmaster.com site clearly shows that by focus­ing at the hyper­fo­cal dis­tance you gain over 4 feet of sharp­ness toward the fore­ground when you use a 5omm lens at F-16 and focus at 27.1 feet instead of‚ where the object actu­ally is at 50 feet.. Try this test for your­self; shoot 1 shot the reg­u­lar way and 1 shot using the hyper­fo­cal dis­tance. This appli­ca­tion already lists the most com­mon dig­i­tal cam­eras and takes their crop fac­tors into account.

Landscape photography
Left image shot nor­mally while right image was shot at the hyper­fo­cal dis­tance. Even at this small size you can see that the right shot shows a bit more sharp­ness in the midground while the back­ground looks sim­i­lar in both shots. The effects are more notice­able when you print at larger sizes.

Links /resources men­tioned in this podcast:

Dofmaster’s awe­some depth of field cal­cu­la­tor that also cal­cu­lates hyper­fo­cal dis­tance
Dofmaster’s depth of field cal­cu­la­tor for free use with an iphone (need to con­nect to the Net — use this URL from an IPhone ONLYNOT from your com­puter)
Dofmaster’s sim­u­lated depth of field cal­cu­la­tor for free use with an Non-iphones (need to con­nect to the Net)
Dofmaster’s Itunes depth of field cal­cu­la­tor App for $1.99 (No Inter­net con­nec­tion required)
November’s ‘land­scapes in por­trait orientation’‚assignment on the Photography.ca forum
Please join the Photography.ca fan page on Face­book
My Face­book pro­file — Feel free to “friend” me — please just men­tion Photography.ca

My Twit­ter page — I will fol­low you if you fol­low me — Let’s con­nect — PLEASE email me and tell me who you are in case I don’t rec­i­p­ro­cate because I think you are a spam­mer.

If you are still lurk­ing on our forum,
feel free to join our friendly :) Pho­tog­ra­phy forum

Thanks to Kat, Glenn Euloth (Igua­nasan), Bambi and Alex Maxim who posted a blog com­ment about our last pod­cast. Thanks as always to every­one that sent com­ments by email about our last pod­cast. Although ALL com­ments are appre­ci­ated, com­ment­ing directly in this blog is pre­ferred. Thanks as well to all the new mem­bers of the bul­letin board.

If you are look­ing at this mate­r­ial on any other site except Photography.ca — Please hop on over to the Photography.ca blog and pod­cast and get this and other pho­tog­ra­phy info directly from the source. I Sub­scribe with iTunes I Sub­scribe via RSS feed I Sub­scribe with Google Reader I Sub­scribe for free to the Pho­tog­ra­phy pod­cast — Photography.ca and get all the posts/podcasts by Email
You can down­load this pho­tog­ra­phy pod­cast directly by click­ing the pre­ced­ing link or lis­ten to it almost imme­di­ately with the embed­ded player below.

Freeman Patterson exhibition — Montreal till Nov.15/09

If you live in or near Mon­treal and love artis­tic land­scape pho­tog­ra­phy you OWE it to your­self to take a drive to Dol­lard Des Ormeaux to see the Free­man Pat­ter­son pho­tog­ra­phy exhibition.

Sun­rise at Koker­boomk­loof — ‚© 2006 Free­man Patterson

This exhi­bi­tion is AWESOME. Free­man Pat­ter­son has been shoot­ing land­scapes around the world and teach­ing work­shops for many decades. I’ve been a major fan of his for a good twenty years and I con­sider him to be a mod­ern mas­ter land­scape pho­tog­ra­phy artist. Every­thing about this exhi­bi­tion screams qual­ity. The images them­selves are gor­geous and I spent a good sev­enty min­utes look­ing at each and every one. The com­po­si­tion of each pho­to­graph is very well thought out as you would expect. Free­man is a teacher and expert at visual design and you’ll note the atten­tion he has paid to the fore­ground midground and back­ground. There’s excit­ing stuff going on in all 3 of those zones.‚ But every­thing else in the pho­tographs work too; expo­sure, colour and the print­ing. Gor­geous print­ing on heavy water­colour paper that reveals great tonal­ity from pure white to deep black with excel­lent shadow detail in most prints.

Free­man exhibits about 18 large sized pho­tographs that are around 20 X 30 inches. All the prints are for sale in small lim­ited edi­tions. The Gallery is located in the Dol­lard Civic Cen­ter (across the street from Marche de L’Ouest) 12001, boule­vard De Sal­aberry, Dollard-des-Ormeaux, Qc. H9B 2A7 (Gen­eral Tel. # (514) 684‑1011).‚ Look for the LIBRARY, the gallery is in the base­ment of the library build­ing. Tues.-Wed. 12–4 PM, Thurs.-Fri. 2-5PM, Sat.-Sun. 1–4 PM and there are guided tours avail­able. The gallery is closed on Nov. 11th for remem­ber­ance day.

I have seen NO pub­lic­ity for this show…which is a trav­esty as this work is aching to be seen by pho­tog­ra­phy lovers. So take a drive to the West Island and you won’t be disappointed!

My new logos — Thanks a ton Sylvain Grand’Maison

I’ve been want­ing a new logo for my own per­sonal pho­tog­ra­phy for quite some time now. There’s just some­thing about ‘sign­ing your work’ that I feel is impor­tant. For me, a sig­na­ture pro­vides a sense of clo­sure. There are so many ways to tweak/modify/enhance a pho­to­graph that some­times you’re not sure if your ver­sion is the fin­ished ver­sion. A sig­na­ture allows you to say, OK enough now, I’m done with this image, let’s move on.

I’d like to thank Syl­vain Grand’Maison BIG TIME for the great work that he did for me. For those of you that don’t know Syl­vain, he has one of the most pop­u­lar French Pod­casts (even though he’s per­fectly bilin­gual) in Que­bec called le Que­bec en Bal­adod­if­fu­sion. He also helps busi­nesses and indi­vid­u­als get started in the social media space and works as a con­sul­tant in this regard. So why did I ask him to cre­ate my logos?  That’s because his back­ground is in graphic design and he still takes on the occa­sional graphic design gig.

So now I need YOUR help. I really dig both of these logos and I think I know which one I like best but I’d like some opin­ions. Which one of these above logos do you like bet­ter, the left one or the right one?

In choos­ing these logos Syl­vain pre­sented me with a bunch of dif­fer­ent choices on totally dif­fer­ent themes. Here is another design Syl­vain cre­ated. I love this one as well — it has a seri­ous Russ­ian feel. I’m not sure what I’ll use this red design for, but I do know what my next Face­book avatar will look like.

My new logos — Thanks a ton Sylvain Grand’Maison

I’ve been want­ing a new logo for my own per­sonal pho­tog­ra­phy for quite some time now. There’s just some­thing about ‘sign­ing your work’ that I feel is impor­tant. For me, a sig­na­ture pro­vides a sense of clo­sure. There are so many ways to tweak/modify/enhance a pho­to­graph that some­times you’re not sure if your ver­sion is the fin­ished ver­sion. A sig­na­ture allows you to say, OK enough now, I’m done with this image, let’s move on.

I’d like to thank Syl­vain Grand’Maison BIG TIME for the great work that he did for me. For those of you that don’t know Syl­vain, he has one of the most pop­u­lar French Pod­casts (even though he’s per­fectly bilin­gual) in Que­bec called le Que­bec en Bal­adod­if­fu­sion. He also helps busi­nesses and indi­vid­u­als get started in the social media space and works as a con­sul­tant in this regard. So why did I ask him to cre­ate my logos?‚ That’s because his back­ground is in graphic design and he still takes on the occa­sional graphic design gig.

So now I need YOUR help. I really dig both of these logos and I think I know which one I like best but I’d like some opin­ions. Which one of these above logos do you like bet­ter, the left one or the right one?

In choos­ing these logos Syl­vain pre­sented me with a bunch of dif­fer­ent choices on totally dif­fer­ent themes. Here is another design Syl­vain cre­ated. I love this one as well — it has a seri­ous Russ­ian feel. I’m not sure what I’ll use this red design for, but I do know what my next Face­book avatar will look like.

The city and the people working as one — NOT

Every pho­tog­ra­pher has sub­ject mat­ter that inter­ests them more than other sub­ject mat­ter. For me, what gets me going the most is fine art pho­tog­ra­phy and por­trai­ture. However.….every once in a while I’ll pull out my cam­era to shoot dif­fer­ent sub­ject mat­ter. Gotta pay those bills. This morn­ing how­ever I pulled out my cam­era because I was sim­ply pissed off at my city. Look at what they are doing with our recy­cling. Does THIS look like a recy­cling truck?

I love Mon­treal. I find the city VERY pro­gres­sive, tol­er­ant, fairly clean and great place to live. My wife and I love it here. We are com­mu­nity minded peo­ple who believe in the envi­ron­ment and we ALWAYS recy­cle as much as we can. We wash out con­tain­ers and bot­tles and sep­a­rate papers to make it easy for the recy­cling crew. We used to see our recy­cling going into a recy­cling truck, where it would get sorted on the spot. As far as I know, crunched up mixed recy­cling in a garbage truck is NOT recycling…it’s frig­gin’ garbage on its way to a landfill.

Does any­one know what is going on here? I mean as much as I love to do my part, I hate wast­ing my time, and I hate munic­i­pal bull­crap. If my recy­cling is going into a land­fill, then why am I wast­ing my frig­gin’ time?