Quick Tip: Cheap and Easy Cable Organizers

If you are like me, your work station has about 50 cables gong in and out of various ports, USB card readers, portable drives, scanners, iPhone/Android, headset, microphone and probably a few others that I failed to mention.

The folks at @HDSLRnow just shared a quick and easy tip on organizing all those cables using paper binders. Their specific implementation involves a small wooden bar, but I found it was just as useful to place the binders on the edge of desk.

[DIY Camera Cable Organizervia @HDSLRnow] [Read more...]

10 Travel Photography Essentials

There’s nothing quite like a vacation, road trip, adventure, or combination of the three to get your creative juices flowing. Sometimes hitting the road is exactly what you need to get yourself out a creative rut. New surroundings– especially if they are outside your comfort zone– have a way of injecting your photography with the shot of adrenalin it’s been missing. When you’re planning these excursions, though, there are certain essentials you need to pack– items designed to protect your gear and images, while making sure that your shot of adrenalin isn’t wasted.


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Photos Of Lights Powered By Fruits

Over the years, we shared quite a few ways to power your lights, but nothing we shared was as inspiring as this Back To Light series by Caleb Charland (interviewed here).

Photos Of Lights Powered By Fruits

Caleb Wires fruits and vegetables in a way similar to the classic electricity-from-potato weekend experiment, only he uses arrays of eatery and visually appealing light fixtures. He then takes a pictures of the power created.

Once the photo was taken, Caleb recycles the fruits by composting them or feeding them to the animals in the forests around his house. [Read more...]

DIY Project: Battery Charger / USB Connector Center

Continuing our obsession with better battery management, we would like to share a post by photographer Julian Eichhoff. Looks like Julian not only cracked the system for battery charging, but managed to build a whole portable uber-photographer-power-and-data-james-bond-case.

I own several cameras and every camera requires its own battery type. In total I need four different chargers for my batteries. In addition to that every camera/device needs another USB connector. Every time I need to charge a battery or download files I am recabling. I was sick of that for a long time, now I have built a solution to end the cable madness. What I have done is basically taking a wooden box and installing the chargers, a 7-port USB 3.0 hub and a harddrive docking station inside using velcro. It’s nothing fancy but it is practical. Long story short, here is the result:
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Quick Tip – Use a Power Bar While Traveling Abroad

The awesome Benjamin Von Wong is here on a visit and we gave my new video setup a quick run.

Since Ben comes from Canada all his devices has weird Canadian no good plugs. The solution, use one all-in-one pongs adapter and a “bought at home country” power bar. This configuration has a small foot print and can be reused around the world.

(Side note: expect more videos here, one of the first ones will be on how to create that “white” look on a budget). [Read more...]

Bullets Out / Batteries In

Bullets Out / Batteries InWeapon stores are a cool place for photogs to hang out in, not necessarily because photographers use firearms (though we are constantly treated as terrorists), but because photogs share some of the same concerns of hunters.

Readers Michael Page just spotted that bullet cases or (“Ammo” boxes) can be used to store batteries on long trips where you have no chargers. Or when you need lots of batteries to stay dry.

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The External Flash Power That Will Last Till Hell Freezes

The External Flash Power That Will Last Till Hell FreezesUPDATE: IanW has a good point in the comments that flashes can go thermal on you. He is right. Pop to hard and too fast and you will overheat. “Fire a flash too frequently with this setup and you will destroy it due
to overheating, unless it’s got a thermal cutout (most don’t).

UPDATE 2: if you’re gonna do this, make sure you’re doing this on a 6V flash, i.e. 4 AA batteries. This will fry your flash if it is a 3V flash (2 AAs)

We write quite a bit about portable strobes. If you’ve been around for a while you may remember an older version of those strobes. The Sunpak family. While I have not used them myself (too young, sorry), those behemoth shoot at a staggering GN of 48 (meters) and have the look and feel to support it. That makes them ideal for sun swamped on location lighting. The nice thing is that they are old enough to be bought at ridiculously low prices second hand.

The following post about portable power source for small flashes (and Sunpak 611 in particular) is written by John Hagar (blog). [Read more...]

The Best Invention Since The Invention Of The Power Cord

The Best Invention Since The Invention Of The Power CordThe following guest post about the best invention since the invention of the power cord (and saving space while traveling) is made by Simon Williams of Simon James Williams Photography.

You’ve been looking for something that will change your photography forever, something you’ve never quite been able to put your finger on, the “Zen” some people say that you have been looking for.

You have the best camera that your wife (or husband) will allow – in fact you’ve got more mega-pixels at your disposal that the Hubble space telescope. You are in more debt than the Lehman Brothers website designer because of it. [Read more...]

Empower Yourself On Location (Or Two Portable Power Packs)

Portable Battery for StrobeI used to love a good what do you get when you cross jokes. I still do. What do you get when you cross a battery with a pure sine inverter? Read on to find out.

As you probably know, I am a big fan of small flashes. (*cough* Strobist *cough), but sometimes small flashes just don’t have the juice to light up a scene. It may be a big place that needs tons of power or a huge light sucking modifier that eats up all the light from your strobe. (Try using the SB 900 on the westcott 2.15 meters octabank, that would be an interesting strobe challenge). So I do have one big 400WS flash. (Ok, just before you hit me with the “you call 400WS big?? ppffffhhh!”, I’d say that it was big enough for me when I bought it, and it was I could afford.

So anyway, if you are in a studio this is no biggy. Plug the flash to the wall socket, dial up the power and you are good to go. But what if you are outside the studio. On the beach, park, moon? [Image by andyarmstrong]

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More Power To Your Flash – External SLA Battery Flash Mod

More Power To Your Flash - External SLA Battery FlashIf you’ve been shooting with a flash for a while, I’m sure you had some battery problem or another at least once. Like when one of four batteries goes bad and quickly discharges the other three. Or when it’s cold and the batteries don’t hold their charge so well anymore. Wouldn’t it be nice if you could have a more reliable source of power? One that virtually lasts for ever (well, not forever, but for a darn long time). This is probably on the wish list of anyone who is shooting off shoe and don’t care much about weight, but do care about recycling time and number of pops that can be squeezed in a session.

Konstantin Sirotkin describes how to make a Flash mod that will allow you to connect your flash to an external power source.
Yes this is an external power source, no mater how bomb-like it looks.

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