Last Shoot of the Year

Get the Light Close – edit completed

Tomorrow is my last shoot of the year and is a studio shoot with three lovely ladies.

I am hoping to push my photography more this coming year, I have been playing it safe and the images are a little similar.

I am already start to short list ideas and models for the first three months and I look forward if not producing great images at least learning more and getting my skill up to the next level.

Merry Christmas

Leica Summicron 35mm

Once again Christmas come round again. Its been a very light year on the photography front. A bit of street photography and some corporate shoots, as well as a few studio shoots including my farewell shoot with the delightful Mrs B.

We had quite a day experimenting with different glasses, looks and lighting. I think a glasses project may be a focus for 2019.

The Night Before Christmas

On the Biking Blog “Ride it like you stole it!” which is sadly no more by Dave Dragon, there was a poem “The Biker’s Night Before Christmas”.

Crossing the Ford

I have posted this before but as this is my last post before Christmas I thought it was worth posting again.

“Twas the night before Christmas, and all through the pad,

There was nada happenin’, now that’s pretty bad.

The woodstove was hung up in that stocking routine,

In hopes that the Fat Boy would soon make the scene.

With our stomachs packed with tacos and beer,

My girl and I crashed on the couch for some cheer.

When out in the yard there arose such a racket,

I ran for the door and pulled on my jacket.

I saw a large bro’ on a ’56 Pan

Wearin’ black leathers, a cap, and boots (cool biker, man).

He hauled up the bars on that bikeful of sacks,

And that Pan hit the roof like it was running on tracks.

I couldn’t help gawking, the old guy had class.

But I had to go in — I was freezing my ass.

Down through the stovepipe he fell with a crash,

And out of the stove he came dragging his stash.

With a smile and some glee he passed out the loot,

A new jacket for her and some parts for my scoot.

He patted her fanny and shook my right hand,

Spun on his heel and up the stovepipe he ran.

From up on the roof came a great deal of thunder,

As that massive V-twin ripped the silence asunder.

With beard in the wind, he roared off in the night,

Shouting, “Have a cool Yule, and to all a good ride!”


Adobe Lightroom & Using Multiple Computers

Tethered Shooting in LightroomI have my photographs all in a single master Lightroom catalog not counting my yearly backup catalogues, and for me that works well.

My main computer is also my laptop and it’s getting on a bit now so I have started to think about either replacing it or supplementing it with a new desktop.

I’ll need to keep the laptop and would also like to use Lightroom on it too.

This brings up the issue of operating with two Lightroom catalogues and keeping work in sync.

After the Collingham show I decided to give a two catalogue two computer workflow ago.

I borrowed Caroline’s MacBookPro, logged in and created a blank Lightroom catalog, I then dragged and dropped my Lightroom settings folder into the Catalog folder from Dropbox where a script I have keeps it all in sync.

This then quickly and easily gave me a working environment just like my machine.

Now for the easy part, import the Collingham pictures and get editing.  I used my presets for an initial edit and gave them a quick rank, then selected my picks with the flag option.

Now to get them onto my main computer.

I exported all the photographs as a fresh catalog so as to preserve the original to the desktop folder on the laptop included raw files.

If I do adopt a two machine strategy I’ll create a shared area on the main desktop computer to put the files onto but for this test I just used AirDrop and dragged and dropped the exported folder to my main machine.

Now time to start work on my main machine.

First job was to launch Lightroom and import the catalogue and files, I now had everything up to date and in the master catalogue.  I then did a little editing on a couple of the picks.

Later that evening I picked up Caroline’s laptop and launched my Lightroom with the small catalogue just containing the Collingham pictures and reviewed them again.  I found a couple more picks and did a quick edit on them.

Now this was the interesting bit.  I had two Lightroom catalogues on two different computers, both with different edits.  Could Lightroom cope.

Once again I exported the Lightroom catalogue but this time only exported the database not any files, they were already on my main machine and if any metadata updates in the case of jpegs or dng’s had taken place the overwrite could loose me data (Note I sometimes shoot RAW + JPG but never just JPG).

Again I transferred the database over using airdrop, a very useful and fast way of transferring documents on a adhoc nature if your on the same local network.

Now for the import on my master catalogue, first job, backup my master catalogue, just in case it went horribly wrong.  Then for the import, how would it handle duplicate entries?

Dealing with duplicate files on importing another Catalogue
Dealing with duplicate files on importing another Catalogue

Well it turns out very well, as you can see above there is a tick box to preserve the duplicated files as a virtual copy.  Also my fear of overwriting the files and not exporting the actual files is not an issue as the database can also be imported at this point with the option to bring in Metadata and develop settings only and not the original files if you so wish.

iOS Differences

Since moving villages I no longer get a mobile phone signal at home. My current mobile phone contract is up next month and the excuse of not getting a signal at home plus the fact they will not unlock phones for free has pushed me away from my current provider.

So this month I had my phone unlocked and have been trying other networks.

As part of this testing I made a number of interesting discoveries.

Dependant on whose sim you have in and if you restore your phone from a backup or set up as new you get a few minor differences.

The first thing I spotted was the Cellular Menu became a Mobile Menu, also the options in here differed but not really surprising.  No the surprising thing was things like security options, on the old sim I only had auto lock from instant to 15 minutes, but when the phone was setup as new with the sim from another network it had options up to four hours!

I would have thought the functionality would have remained fairly constant.

Now that my testing has finished I have a few choices to make.  A review of the main UK networks was published this week, and the one I am on came top, but this network does not work at home and I still need to use my mobile at home.  The network that works best at home came worst and in my testing was worst for data.

With those results in mind I am not quite sure what I am going to do.  I could remember to put a divert on my mobile before heading home but what if I forget, and there is the cost.

I could just change networks and put up with a better service at home but poorer data elsewhere (though things are looking like changing in the coming year).  Or even go to two phone.  A basic mobile with my main number on it and the best data sim in my smart phone.

Not sure yet but I have till the next month to decide.

Photo Archive

Tintern AbbeyI know of a number of photographers who keep a photographic archive. This is not their backup, but a copy of their selects saved either onto a spare harddisk or in the cloud/internet.

The idea is that these are saved in a different format. Commonly used is JPeg but a growing number of photographers now use DNG.

So why not RAW or Tiff?

Well RAW is just that an unedited RAW file not your final image unless you also bundle into your archive the database for Adobe Lightroom or Apple Aperture.

RAW files are a proprietary format that may not be supported in the future.

TIFF is a good solution if you have the harddisk space, JPeg is smaller but lossy

I find the ideal compromise is DNG. Now this is a standard that Adobe control but it is open and the specification is well published so many program’s can read and view DNG’s.

So if you have a spare drive or a internet storage solution, save your favourite photos as Jpegs or in DNG. Just in case.

If it’s an old drive ask if you can store it at your parents or brother or sisters house. If you have more then one drive rotate them round.

Twitter @ Tweetdeck

I am not a huge tweeter but I do enjoy following a number of people on Twitter.

Most of this is done via the Twitter app on my iPhone and I occasionally tweet from my laptop direct via OS X.

Occasionally though I use Tweetdeck, I especially like being able to schedule a tweet.

I recently spotted this YouTube video on Tweetdeck and found it very useful, hope you do too.