Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Holiday Gift Ideas for Photographers and Photo Enthusiasts

If you are looking for some creative holiday gift ideas for your photography lovin’ friend, family or loved one, here are a few stocking stuffers for photo geeks that are sure to please: Personal Photography Book or a Gift Card (so they can make their own). 
If you really want to surprise your camera toting loved one, and you have the time to create and access their images (high res of course) you will most certainly bring a burst of joy to the recipient of this gift. Imagine their surprise as you present him or her with a printed photography book only to discover its their own work beautifully printed as a coffee table art book.  With Blurb, you’ll find all the tools you need to make your own photo book and you can count on bookstore-quality printing and binding with a range of choices from Hardcover photo books to Softcover paperbacks in an array of trim sizes.

If gaining access to their work is not possible – fret not; Blurb gift cards are a great way to give the gift of bookmaking to your favorite people. You can give a Blurb gift card to anyone, whether they’ve used Blurb or not, and let them take part in the fun of making their own book. The process is easy. Simply select a gift card in dollars, pounds, or euros at any of the increments and you’ll receive a unique code to pass on to the lucky recipient. You can either print out your gift card as a note to share, or you can send it in an email.

You’re a little fuzzy around 2, start feeling fine around 8, but at 11 you’re sharp, focused, and ready to party. The f-stop watch gets you. Aperture numbers mark off the hours on this understated timepiece. The zinc-alloy frame encircles a glass-encased dial, and a 9.25″ band sits comfortably on your wrist.

A quartz movement ensures accurate time-keeping, and a bright-red second hand is ready to help you time your manual exposures. Truly, ’tis a timely accessory for photo-making that any photographer would love.

Nikon or Canon Camera Lens Mugs - $24 – $30
The ultimate head-turner. Drink out of a lens! Clever Canon or Nikon Lens Mugs that look JUST LIKE your favorite lens. Be careful, they are so realistic you might have to use post-its just to remind yourself which is for coffee and which is for taking photos. The 24-105mm black lens has a realistic lens-cap lid with rubber-grip focus zoom rings. It even has an auto-focus switch that actually switches. The 70-200mm white lens has a liquid tight travel lid and a rubber-grip bottom to keep it from sliding on your dash. Both mug models are equipped with an easy to clean, heat preserving, stainless steel lining. 

Holiday Gifts for the Photo Lover in Your Life

It’s that time of the year again and holiday gift giving is just around the corner. Here are a few gift ideas for the photo enthusiasts in your life. Happy Shopping!

Flickr Pro Account – $24.95 for 1 year
Offer an upgrade to your photo friend or family member. With Flickr Pro, you get ad free browsing and sharing (yeah!), unlimited photo and video uploads and storage, unlimited bandwidth,  stats on your account, permanent archiving, free photo book and more!

Adobe Lightroom 3 Full Version: $99 – $299
Image makers will adore Adobe® Photoshop® Lightroom® 3. Software that helps you bring out the best in your photographs, whether you’re perfecting one image, searching for ten, processing hundreds, or organizing thousands. Create incredible images that move your audience. Experiment fearlessly with state-of-the-art nondestructive editing tools. Easily manage all your images. And showcase your work in elegant print layouts, slide shows, and web galleries, as well as on popular photo-sharing sites. All from within one fast, intuitive application.

A great holiday gift to add to your collection of outstanding art books. MARY ELLEN MARK has achieved worldwide visibility through her numerous books, exhibitions and editorial magazine work.  She has published sixteen books including Passport, Ward 81, Falkland Road, Mother Teresa’s Mission of Charity in Calcutta, The Photo Essay: Photographers at work, Streetwise, Mary Ellen Mark: 25 Years, Indian Circus, Portraits, a Cry for Help, Mary Ellen Mark: American Odyssey, Mary Ellen Mark 55, Photo Poche: Mary Ellen Mark, Twins, Exposure, Extraordinary Child, and Seen Behind the Scene.

FotoCare Gift Card
Some people are just too difficult to buy for so why not gift wrap the FotoCare Gift Card and let them shop for their perfect holiday gadget or accessory.

And now….the perfect gift for photo editing with increased precision and decreased wrist strain/fatigue. Intuos4 redefines the Intuos pen tablet experience, thanks to a new design and new features inspired by members of our professional creative community.  Both the tablet shape and surface have been completely re-engineered to enable ergonomic, consistent strokes, even over long periods of time.  Available in four different wide-formate sizes and a wireless mode, you can pick the perfect one to fit your specific working style and workflow needs.

The Jay Maisel Workshop is a unique photography experience. Participants should expect five solid days (from 9:00am-10:00pm) of shooting, discussing, eating, and breathing photography with Jay at his home – the historic 35,000 square foot former Germania bank building and the surrounding New York City neighborhoods of Manhattan’s lower east side. All meals are included and enrollment is limited to (10) people on a first come, first serve basis. The cost is $5,000.00. If you have any questions, please contact Jamie Smith, Workshop Producer, by email (, or by phone: (917) 647-5390.

Marshall HDMI Monitor 
The V-LCD50-HDMI 5″ monitor is packed with features found in more expensive models. This compact LED-backlit confidence monitor offers amazing picture performance and excellent viewing angles for users simply looking for a portable, yet versatile monitoring solution. The V-LCD50-HDMI offers standard features including a wide variety of formats and markers, 4 user-configurable front panel function buttons, RGB Check Field / Field Detect, RGB gain and bias control. Major features include Marshall’s industry leading FALSE COLOR and PEAKING Filters, along with Image Flip, Freeze Frame, and HDMI Auto Color Space and Ratio detect.

113 Design Company

113 Design Company is a full-service photographic facility with two 2,500 square feet private studios with 100 feet infinity walls, private 5,000 square feet rooftop, daylight with blackout capabilities, private dressing & make-up rooms, lounge and much more.  Located minutes from Manhattan, 113 Design Co. is the perfect place for your next photography or video production.

Not only have they turned their space into an incredible studio it can be transformed to meet any event need. 113 Design Company offers up to 10,000 square feet of flexible space available for fashion shows, trade shows, art galleries, exhibitions, fundraisers and other special events. Catering is also available on-site. The private facility is an amazing environment that can be dedicated and manipulated to fit any needs.

113 Design Company
930 Newark Ave. Loft #6
Jersey City, NJ 07306

Visit for more information or to book the studio today.

Alessandra Sanguinetti: The Adventures of Guille and Belinda

The Adventures of Guille and Belinda and the Enigmatic Meaning of their Dreams. This is the story or, more accurately, part of the story, of two young cousins named Guille and Belinda. In 1999, when they were 10 and 9 years old and living in a rural province of Buenos Aires, their paths crossed with photographer Alessandra Sanguinetti.

Drawn to the girls, whose evident affection for each other is somehow magnified by their mismatched physiques, Sanguinetti took pictures to “crystallize their rich yet fragile and unattended world”. As with her previous, much-acclaimed monograph “On the Sixth Day” [Nazraeli Press, 2006] this work is far more than straight documentary.

To witness the evolving relationship between Guille and Belinda is to be privy to a touching, entertaining and utterly captivating interaction. At the same time there is the subtle awareness of a second relationship, that of this delightful pair and their photographer.

“The Adventures of Guille and Belinda and the Enigmatic Meaning of their Dreams” follows the cousins for five years, from pre-teen to adolescent, as they play, dream and unwind their way through the secret enchantment that is childhood.

The iPad in Photography

Just how popular has the iPad become?  Apple holds 68% of the market share of tablets in the U.S. between the two generations of iPad.  The iPad 2 has sold over 9.3 million units in the few short months it has been on the market.  Software and app development for mobile computing is growing exponentially, and the potential for the tablet is being acknowledged by the photography industry.  Personal computing is seeing a shift from the laptop and desktop to the tablet, because how much power do you need to cruise facebook and watch cat videos?  When we’re not watchingMaru play with a giant box, here is how we use the iPad for photography.
1.  Portfolio

A screen might not ever be able to replace the beauty and detail of a good print, but it just isn’t feasible to carry a traditional portfolio around with you everywhere you go.  With an iPad (and the help of an app) you can carry thousands of images and different portfolios in the double digits.  I have about 10 different “portfolios” of images that I can swap in and out in a couple of seconds, tailoring my book to whomever I am showing work to.  One of our favorites is Padport for its level of customization and ability to play video.  There are a bunch of these available from the App Store, so poke around and read some reviews before making the leap, at an average of $5-$15 per app trying them all might be prohibitively expensive.

2. Keeping clients happy while shooting tethered
Before you get too excited, tethering directly to the iPad is not there yet.  Update: Yesterday Eye Fi rolled out an app that, in combination with their wireless memory cards, allows for tethering using an iPad without jailbreaking.  We haven’t played with it yet, but when we do it’ll be on the blog.  However, by using the latest version of programs such as Leaf Capture Remote Server, Capture One, and Phocus, the iPad can free up your digital tech to continue working on his monitor while clients can still view images at their own pace.  These programs allow you to view, rate, and zoom in on any picture from the shoot, as long as the computer you are tethering to and the iPad are on the same network (wifi is easiest).  LC Remote Server has the same functionalities as the other two, but does not have a rating system.  Both Phocus and Capture One also allow you to change aperture, iso, shutter speed, and remotely trigger the camera.  Capture Pilot’s camera control is $15, while Phocus integrates these capabilities in when shooting with a Hasselblad.
Leaf Capture Remote Server 2

Capture One’s Capture Pilot

Phocus for iPad

Phocus Camera Controls

3.  Sun Seeker
With the iPad 2 came a revolution in “augmented reality” that had only previously been seen on mobile phones, and on.  The Sun Seeker app uses the rear-facing camera to overlay the path of the sun (and moon) over the street in front of you.  There is also a built in compass as well as an overhead view with arrows indicating where the sun will be throughout the day.  The date can be changed in the app to show you the position of the sun on specific days throughout the season.

4. Photo Editing and snapshot camera
By using the Ipad Camera Connection Kit you can download images on your way back from a shoot or use the iPad as a backup.  Also, if you shoot RAW+Jpeg on an dslr you can use an app like Snapseed to start roughing up how you would like to retouch the images.  Also, the camera on the iPad is not dissimilar from your normal cell phone camera, making it ideal for quick photos.

5.  Photographer Entertainment

The Profoto Pro-B4 1000 Air

The Profoto Pro-B4 1000 Air!
Have you ever felt that you’ve need a faster and more sturdy battery pack out on a shoot? Well, you’re in luck as Profoto just announced their new Pro-B4 1000 Air on August 24th! This new battery pack is going to be the fastest on the market and don’t take our word for it!
Mark Rezzonico, Vice President from the MAC Group, said,
“Profoto’s new Pro-B4 1000 Air is the fastest, toughest and most versatile battery generator on the market today.” 

Quite a bold statement if you ask me!
What’s really got me excited, though, are those remarkable flash durations down to 1/25,000 of a second! Not to forget that this pack can give a burst of 30 flashes per second when set to a lower power setting, but also never making you wait more than a full second if you want the full power of the pack.
Since you’re always moving and in constant need of power from an on-the-go pack,  Profoto has managed to keep the charge time down to 45 minutes for a full charge on the battery. Of course, as with all Profoto stuff, the Pro-B4 1000 Air is built like a tank as it’s meant to withstand quite a beating in today’s fast-paced photo world.
If you want more info on this pack check out: or stop by in the fall to give it a look in our store.
Some Tech Specs:·
  • Extremely short flash durations – 1/25,000·
  • Exceptionally fast recycling – .99 seconds at full power – 30/fps at low power·
  • Full Power recharge in only 45 minutes·
  • 11 f/stop range – 1/10th f/stop control·
  • Full Profoto “Air” remote control
    More to follow…

How one Photographer Successfully Uses Social Media to Promote Her Work

Fotocare is pleased to present an exclusive interview with photographer and filmmaker, Gail Mooney. She is co-owner, along with her husband and partner, Thomas Kelly, of  Kelly/Mooney Productions an award-winning full service digital media production company, based in NJ, that services clients such as American Express, Pfizer, Coca-Cola, AT&T and GE to name a few.
I am working on a series of blog posts about how photographer’s can use social media as part of their marketing mix and was in the process of searching for good examples, when I stumbled upon an intriguing post about Gail about how she used Social Media as a means to successfully promote her film Opening Our Eyes. I was so impressed by Gail’s business savvy and case study I wanted to share this story right away. I hope you find this helpful when thinking about how your business can leverage Social Media to your benefit.
Hello Gail, can you tell us about yourself and how you got started in photography?
I had been studying architecture at Syracuse University and decided to take some time off to travel. I ended up traveling half way around the world, during a one year period of my life when I was 19 years old.  I realized on that trip what kind of a lifestyle I wanted to live – one that would allow me to travel and explore cultures.  I thought that becoming a photographer would be a means to that end.  It would also allow me to use my “tools” – in my case cameras and motion cameras to tell the type of stories that I felt needed to be told – to create awareness.

I recently ran across an article on ASMP’s blog about how you effectively used Social Media as a business tool. Could you tell our readers about this effort and why you think social media played a key role in this successful marketing initiative?
Yes, in that blog I provided a real case scenario where I used social media for a project that I was producing.  It was a personal project that would take my daughter and I around the world on a 99-day journey with the purpose of creating a feature length documentary.  The title of the film isOpening Our Eyes and it tells the stories of 11 different people, on six continents who are making a positive difference in the world.  We used social media throughout the making of the film:
  1. To find our subjects through Facebook, Twitter, blogs, emails etc.
  2. Building Relationships and Audiences: We set up a website and a blog where people followed us virtually on our 99-day adventure.  We were building an audience at the same time for our film and a place where people could find out more about our subjects and their causes.
  3. Fund Raising: When we returned from our trip we had over 150 hours of footage and over 4000 still image captures. I spent months going through all the video that I had shot with the Canon 5D Mark II, transcoding the files and laying down the first rough cut. I knew that I wanted to hire a professional editor for their skills and vision but I didn’t have the funds.  Our entire trip had been financed by airline miles, hotel rewards, American Express points and trades for gear and accommodations.  So, I put the project up on Kickstarter, a crowd funding site and raised a little over $10,000.

Would you attribute any business leads, activity or commissioned work as a result of this social media effort?
I can attribute quite a few business leads to social media.  As far as commissioned work, I find that I’d rather work on self initiated projects.  They are not only more gratifying, but can be more profitable as well.  So, I use social media as a networking portal to find partners for collaboration and/or funds.

What digital tools do you use to market your photography business? (such as social media, emails, website, blog, forums etc.) Which do you feel is the most important for your business?
All of the above.  I find my blog is perhaps the most important asset to my business because it creates a buzz in the community.  It’s also led to other opportunities like speaking gigs which I enjoy.

If you have a blog, how often do you post per week?
I actually have two blogs:

I try to blog at least two times a week.
Do you think the time and effort required to maintain an online digital presence is beneficial for your business? How much time would you say you apply to this a week?
Yes, it’s beneficial for business because it gets my name out there.  It’s branding.  I spend about 1 – 2 hours a day.
Do you use any social media tracking tools?
I look at stats on my website, blogs, Vimeo etc.
Given the example outlined above which seems to have met considerable success, have you done anything else using social media that you would say has been successful in marketing your company and its services?
Yes, I uploaded the trailer to my film on Vimeo and within two months time, it had been played in over 107 countries! That’s more than half the countries in the world.

Any tips for photographers that want to start or ramp up their social media efforts?
  1. Don’t (use the platform) to sell
  2. Provide valuable information
  3. Be authentic
Thank you Gail, I am sure many will find your business savvy inspirational! I wanted to end this interview by sharing this paragraph posted on Gail’s website about her film project:
Believe in your dream.  Lots of us have dreams but most of us don’t really believe in them.  I think that makes all the difference as far as making your dream a reality – the ability to believe that your dream will happen.  I have felt that this would happen from the first moment that I conceived the idea – I saw it – I heard it – This idea picked me – not the other way around”

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Phase One and Mamiya/Leaf Announce 645DF+

At the 2012 Photokina in Cologne, Germany, Phase One and Mamiya/Leaf announced their new 645DF+ and Schneider Kreuznach 28mm LS f/4.5 Aspherical lens. The 645DF+ will be able to support more than 50 digital backs as well as 80 lenses. Phase One has called this camera, “the world’s more versatile camera platform for high-end photography” and rightfully so! The  645DF+ can also be used with both a focal plane or leaf shutter lens, in fact, the 645DF+ is one of only a few cameras on the market that supports both focal plane and leaf shutter lenses. Foto Care will care the Mamiya brand name 645DF+ and we’re excited about some of its features and tech specs:
  • Excellent in shooting in low light or low contrast
  • Shoots up to 1/4,000th of a second
  • An enhanced auto-focus delivers accurately focused images fast
  • Syncs with strobes at 1/1,600th of a second with leaf-shutter lenses
  • Custom adjustment feature allows photographers to fine-tune the alignment of digital backs to the camera
  • The body is tough, primarily aircraft grade aluminum and magnesium
  • Camera includes a rechargeable Li-ion battery and charger at no extra cost, but you can buy a kit consisting of two batteries and a charger for $690. Shipping will start in October 2012.
The lens is rather fantastic as well. The 28mm LS f/4.5 Aspherical lens:
  • Offers a 102° field-of-view
  • Offers great sharpness,
  • Has minimum focusing distance of only 1.15 feet (35 cm)
  • Has fast flash synchronization capabilities up to 1/1600s
  • Is ideal for interior, landscape, architecture and cityscape photography
The Schneider Kreuznach 28 LS lens is priced at $5,990. The 645DF+ will also total around $5,990. Shipping begins in October 2012.

Hasselblad H5D

Introducing the Hasselblad H5D!

We recently shared the news that Hasselblad has introduced the H5D to its H Series at Photokina. The new Hasselblad H5D has a ton of new features, including:

  • New HCD 4.8/24mm lens
  • New macro converter
  • More accurate focusing with True Focus II
  • New immediate focus confirm
  • New print-ready JPG files
  • New compressed multi-shot Raw files for faster and smoother workflow
  • New camera configurator
  • Larger and more ergonomic buttons
  • Larger, easier to read display style
  • Updated graphics user interface
  • More programmable buttons
  • New and improved weather sealing
  • New and faster processors implementing Hasselblad image processing architecture

The H5D system will feature "a modernized design" and "a new electronic engine." The camera system will have larger, "more ergonomic buttons," and new sealing for improved weather proofing and will be available as 40, 50 and 60 megapixels models as well as 50 and 200 megapixel Multi-Shot. Hasselblad will also release the HCD 4.8/24mm lens, which is equivalent to a 17mm lens on a full-frame 35-mm format DSLR for the H series. A new Macro Converter for close-up photography will also be available. 

Peter Stig-Nielsen, Hasselblad's Director of Professional Camera Products said,

"Customers will immediately notice the new-look and improved ergonomics and this progressive system also brings upgraded performance on a number of levels. Hasselblad is a world-leader with an unmatched and comprehensive range of lenses. Now that line has been extended with the new wide angle HCD 4.8/24 mm lens, which offers the same performance as the HCD 28 mm and is the equivalent of a 17 mm on 35 mm DSLR format. Additionally, our new Macro Converter provides excellent close-up performance with the HC 50, HCD 28 and HC 35 lenses - negating the need for additional macro lens purchase."

Now Hasselblad brings users a tethered solution with the Lightroom® 4 tether plug-in so they can have:
  • Full camera control from Lightroom® 4
  • Capture options from both Lightroom® 4 and our H4D
  • Full remote camera control and capture from Phocus Mobile 2.0 through iPhone®, iPad® and iPod Touch®.
More information to come!