Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Arkansas Senate Bill SB-79 assualt on photographer's rights vetoed

US Constitution, page one, courtesy of the US National ArchivesToday, Arkansas Governor Hutchinson vetoed the Arkansas Senate Bill SB-79, “The Personal Rights Protection Act,” which the Arkansas legislature had worked hard to pass.

The bill, which passed the Arkansas legislature last week was designed to protect the privacy and rights of Arkansas citizens, but unfortunately, in that effort, it would have effectively made street photography illegal for making or viewing, even from out of state via the Internet in the state of Arkansas, unless the photographer was able to obtain a written release from each and every person recognizable in each photo, with a few exceptions.

The bill, sponsored by friends of longtime Arkansas football coach Frank Broyles' family, in a far reaching, unfair way, would have, in my opinion, unconstitutionally expanded the definition of “commercial photography,” well beyond what has been settled law in the US for decades.

Friday, March 27, 2015

Filming location of I've been writing about the dangers of photography, videography and filming on, at or near railroad tracks for some time. In my recent article, “Update: Photographing near the railroad — Don't!!!” I included the example of the death of Sarah Jones, about what can and has gone wrong when people film on railroad tracks without the permission and cooperation of the railroad.

On February 20, 2014, during the filming of the movie “Midnight Rider” after two trains passed their filming location near Doctortown, GA, USA, the film crew setup to shoot a “dream sequence” on a railroad trestle over the Altamaha River.

Soon, a third train, which wasn't expected, came chugging across the bridge over the river connecting to the trestle. The crew had less than a minute to clear the trestle. It wasn't enough time, and as a result, second camera assistant, Sarah Jones, was killed by the train.

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

A giant in photographic gear innovation and invention has died: Paul C. Buff

Paul C. Buff - Image courtesy of Paul C. Buff Inc.Paul C. Buff, one of photography's greatest inventors and innovators passed away this week at the age of 78.

He lived through the depression era where his philosophy of life was formed. For decades Buff, an American, had been one of photography's most amazing lighting innovators, not only for photographers, but for filmmakers and videographers alike. Buff formed his company, Paul C. Buff, Inc. in 1980 as a research company.

Buff was a long time inventor and engineer. Some called him a visionary inventor. Prior to entering the photography lighting design and manufacturing world, he had been an audio recording studio owner, with many gold records. That business evolved into designing and manufacturing professional audio equipment. To this day Buff still remains widely recognized in the audio community for his savvy, innovation and success, especially with his high quality computerized recording console technologies. He worked with such music industry luminaries as Frank Zappa, Ray Dolby, The Beatles, Carol King and many others in the field.

Friday, March 20, 2015

Update: Photographing near the railroad — Don't!!!

Diesel locomotive, Amtrak's Auto Train
I've been writing about the problem of photographers and videographers, amateurs and professionals alike, working at, on or near railroad tracks and yards for a long time, without the permission and the cooperation of the railroad. Too often, they're putting themselves and others unwittingly in serious jeopardy by the way they are conducting themselves.

Just last September, you might have read my article, “Photographing trains…Stay off the Tracks!!!

Unfortunately, my articles, and those of colleagues haven't had enough of an effect. Photographers, videographers, and sometimes those being photographed or videod, continue to die needlessly while making images or videos at, on or near railroad tracks.

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Printing your travel photos: PPI vs. DPI

HP Z3200 Designjet Printer - Image courtesy of Hewlett PackardWhile these days, most travelers display their photos online instead of in the photo albums of the past, many travelers still print more than a few images to keep and show off their travel memories. Some even hang prints of their travels on the walls of their home.

Unfortunately, many travelers, like other photographers, are often confused about sizing their images for printing because countless photographers incorrectly use the terms, PPI (pixels per inch) and DPI (dots per inch) interchangeably.

PPI and DPI are not at all the same, and they are independent of each other.

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Six tips from Ansel Adams for making your travel photos

Tabular Iceberg Alley at Renland, off Sydkap, Scoresby Sund, Greenland with Silversea's Silver Explorer on the rightAnsel Adams, the great American photographer and environmentalist died more than 30 years ago, however, people viewing his work for the first time or even for the thousandth time still are wowed, often blown away by his images.

While known for his amazing landscape photographs, he was also a major innovator of systems and techniques. Along with Fred Archer, Adams developed the Zone System for determining optimal exposures. He worked as a long time consultant to Polaroid, and unknown to many, made thousands of photographs using the Polaroid system.

While Adams died in 1984, about a decade before the digital camera was generally commercially available, with the Apple QuickTake and the Kodak DC40, I believe he would have, at the least, seriously experimented with them and would have likely embraced their use.