Speed Links for 11-21-2008

speedlinksThis last month has been a stressed and wonderful month for me. I am starting to build a house. This is cool for two reasons. The first, I’ll have access to some great industrial / construction / raw locations. 

The second reason why it is so cool is that I’ll get to build a studio in the basement. Yes – after forfeiting my rights to have any say about decorations, room sizes and kitchen appliances, I get the basement for a studio. A good deal if you ask me. The studio will double as kid’s space, but who cares. It is still a studio. It’ll take about 8 to 10 months to build the house, then, expect a studio post. And if you come by, expect some great pizza and cold beer. 

This got me thinking and I have a new site project brewing up that has allot to do with my plans for the studio, so stay tuned.

However, if I look at the coming month, I get (almost as) equally exited with "Something New" – A Photography Project here at DIYP. The project encouraged photographers to share equipment and to discuss it online. We also have some great prizes – some two-weeks body/lens rental courtesy of BorrowLenses.

I see this project as a great opportunity to learn and teach, to go Yellow (if you are red) to Red (if you’re yellow), to go back to point and shoot days or to try some high-end dSLR. It is also a great opportunity do some photography "things" together.You can use this thread to find partners.

Till any of those projects complete, here are some of my favorite readings for the last month  [Read more...]

Something New – A Photography Project

Something New - A Photography ProjectHere we go again with another project here at DIYP. This time the project has a really cool theme – sharing. In this project, I am going to ask you to pair up with a friend and share a photography experience. I am going to ask you to temporarily exchange a piece of gear and write a review about it. We also have an awesome sponsor for this one with a set of prizes to fit the theme. I am really exited about this one and I hope I can make my enthusiasm catch.

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RED camera system Wouldn’t it be cool if your shutter would go from 30 to 1/30000? Wouldn’t it be cool if your lens went from 14-400 (like your modem once did)? Wouldn’t it be cool if you could pick and choose the parts in your camera? Hey! You can!

Today, RED announced their two of their new systems:  Scarlet and Epic. Those are the two cameras which will enable you to do just that: Pick and choose the various parts of your system.

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DIY Ghetto-Fab Portable Backdrop Stand

DIY Ghetto-Fab Portable Backdrop Stand This backdrop holder by Edward Holtzman is one the fastest-to-assemble / cheap-to-build / quick-to-store / don’t-piss-wife-with-photo-junk projects I have seen.

Riding on the PVC wave, Ed created a three section foldable backdrop stand. The genius thing about it is the way Ed overcame the common problem of stabilizing the stand. And the really genius thing about it is that after you are done taking pictures, you can take the stand out to play football with your son.

There is no end to creativity – if you created a cool setup for your shot, and you want to share it with DIYP readers and post it on the site, drop me a note.

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PVC Backdrop/Light Stand

DIY Photography backdrop standI love nothing better than a good PVC construction. This is why I was so happy when David Turman sent in this great PVC stand. As any stand it can double as a light stand or a backdrop stand. You can use the stand to mount the cool backdrop you already made, or “just” your store bought backdrop. David is doesn’t talk much, but his picture by picture tutorial is priceless. David, the floor is yours.

Here is my version of a simple and durable PVC backdrop or Lighting Stand. All the pieces are cheap and readily available and assembly is easy. I bought all the pieces at my local Lowe’s for about $11.00, so you can do 2 for about 20 bucks not counting the uprights. You might save even more if you buy a multi-pack of the PVC fittings.

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An Ode To My Power Supply Unit + Setup Shot

An Ode To My Power Supply Unit There comes a time at any man’s life, where he enters their workroom oh-my-god-kids-what-is-going-on-room and something smelled funny.

Smells metallic. Burning. My socks on fire? No…. What is it? Smelling my way towards the source, I found it to be my computer. Or more precisely, my four years old power supply’s fan has decided to die on me. A dying fan means that the computer is heating up, which means that blue screens of death will pop in any second now.

I quickly went to the nearest computer store and bought myself a new unit with two fans. I figured if one will die the other one will still be there. Total cost – 65 Dollars. Definitely worth it.

Just before I throw the little guy to the little recycle bin in the sky, I wanted to say good buy in an appropriate, nice way. After all it did give me power for four years.

Loosing my power supply got me thinking that I need better backup to my pictures than the external hard drive I am currently using. After all my pictures are stored on my personal computer. If you have an idea, please post it in the comments section. I also went to reread some of the great stuff Brian has to say about backing pictures up.

So aside from the ode, there is also a setup shot and some explanations after the jump.

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Holding a Nuclear Reactor – A Balloon Shot Anatomy

Holding a Nuclear Reactor - A Balloon Shot Anatomy One of the things I like best is High Speed Photography, it is an art that combines a hard technical challenge, along with an opportunity to have an artistic say. We’ve featured a few DIY articles about DIYing it, but nothing beats dedicated controllers.

This is why I was really happy to play a bit with the Universal Photo Timer – a heaven for High Speed Photographers. I’ll write a review about it soon. (I know – the name says timer, but it is actually way more then just a timer) Till then, I’d like to share a High Speed shot I did, and with it the process of polishing a picture (or some aspects of it) till it is good. I will also discuss about what’s missing from the final image.
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Holding Onto Bouncy Emergent Toddler Moments

Baby's Growth Stages Captured in PhotographyWelcome to the forth and last installment of Baby’s Growth Stages Captured in Photography by Shannon Kietzman from My Baby Photos.

Now that your child has reached the toddler stage, there are so many exciting moments for you to capture on film! By now, your little one is moving around quite easily and is getting into everything he or she can find. For that reason, there are six broad categories of photographs for you to cover once your child reaches this stage. These include:

  • On Your Feet
  • Curiosity is King
  • The Great, Big World
  • Family Bonding Time
  • Capturing Innocence
  • Embarrassing Moments

With each of these special moments captured in your child’s photo album, you will have plenty of cherished memories to share as your child grows older.

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Exploring Small Strobes: Why Use Speedlights Off Camera

Exploring Small StrobesWelcome to this multi-part series of articles on Exploring Small Strobes by Yanik Chauvin from Yanik’s Photo School.

In part 1 on Exploring Small strobes, I looked at why using flash guns instead of the built-in flash and studio strobes. Today, I’ll be going through the importance of using your speedlight off camera.

So, we already know that direct flash from your built-in flash gives unflattering results, to say the least. Using your speedlight in the same way won’t change much. I did mention that you can redirect the light by rotating the head of your flash gun and bouncing the light off ceilings and walls but you’re still very limited in your creativity. So what’s a photographer to do? I’ll tell you. Get that speedlight off your camera to unleash its full potential!

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