Best battery holder ever

I shoot quite a bit, most weeks I shoot 5-10 sessions. I also shoot a little of everything, from weddings, portraits, even some commercial work. This kind of schedule has me shooting on location quite frequently, and I tend to shoot a lot of strobist style lighting. Small light-weight speed-lights, minimal gear, etc. etc. I say “minimal” but that still means carrying a lot of gear. And a lot of batteries. I spent several years, trying to keep good batteries separated from the spent ones, and they would almost always get mixed up before then of a shoot.  I tried the little plastic cases, but they would eventually pop open and spill batteries inside the camera bag. Here is a simple DIY project that will solve that problem. Pick up some simple elastic webbing at any craft store ( I found it in Wal-mart) and use a stapler to make slots for the batteries to fit in to. If batteries are in the elastic holders, they are good. when I have used the batteries they go in one of the compartments in my bag. I always know which batteries are good and which batteries are...

Battery Replacement for MacbookPro

  A few weeks ago, my laptop battery started failing.  In the past, this is really more of an inconvenience than a problem, I would just go to the local battery store and purchase a new battery and snap it on. Done. The last computer I purchased was a 2.7 GHz Intel Core i7 (mid 2011) MacBook Pro 13 inch. The battery is not user replaceable.  Apple charges $129 to change the battery out in my MBP, that is not too bad, but there is no apple store with-in a 4 hour drive of where I live. I simply cannot be with out a computer for a week or two if I had to send it off…. So, after a little research, I found a battery for $109. If you are brave enough to crack the back panel of your precious MBP, keep reading. The process to change the battery is very simple.   Completely shut down and turn off the computer. Unplug any chargers. Turn the computer over, there are 10 screws that hold the back case on. Use a #0 Phillips screwdriver to remove them. 3 of the screws are a little longer, keep track of where those go. Remove back case The battery is located on the bottom right corner. Located the pin connector, with a small plastic “Spudger” (a spudger is a small plastic pry tool, here are the details: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spudger) I did not have a “spudger”, so I used a small flat tipped screwdriver, just make sure that you do not bridge the contacts on the battery with a metal screwdriver. That would be...

Everyday Carry

The best camera is the one you have with you. I am sure that you have heard that statement before. Usually that argument is made to justify the use of a small point and shoot or camera phone. I tried really, really hard to like my camera phone. I even had a phone with Zeiss optics and an 8 megapixel sensor…. I just never could get behind the (much) reduced image quality and the lack of depth of field. I mean, I really tried hard to like the camera phone. Tried android, iOS, and even windows phone, Instagram or not…. Did’t really matter, the horrible colors, heavy noise and artifacts and other undesirable elements just made it intolerable for me. The real reason for me comes down to prints. I know, I know. I must be a little old fashioned, but the is something special about a big print. Camera-phones just don’t make good prints. IMHO. Here is a little background: I was primarily a wedding/portrait photographer. I try to use available light where I can. I started of shooting a 35mm film camera, i had a 28/2.8, a 50/1.4, and a 100/2. i spent 3 years learning on that set up and it was good. i found i really could shoot most anything i wanted. Then, I discovered auto-focus zooms. At one point a 24-300 was one of my go-to lenses (looking back, what the hell was I thinking). Fast-forward a few years, I am still using zooms, I am shooting professionally now, so the 24-300 went away. I am shooting 24-70/2.8 and 70-200/2.8 at this point. A...

incremental improvements

A brief discussion of incremental improvements   Image Quality. Us photographers are just obsessed with IQ. I admit to pixel peeping at 400% on a 24-inch monitor. I am sure that you have done it before, admit it. I started my journey with a 35mm camera and the skills to process my own negatives and prints. Ever since that time, I have been trying to squeeze the most from my modest collection of cameras and lenses. I have seen the transformation that digital has brought to our industry. And, the thing that most people forget is it is all based on incremental improvements.  I can look back at images that I shot a year ago, and I usually think they are still pretty good – images that I am still proud off…. If I start going further back in my catalog… well, then things start to change. I look back at older portfolios and think to myself.” What the hell was I thinking!” Most of it is just terrible. I realize that these little incremental improvements, that we can’t even see as we grow in our art from are the reason. There have been very few “ Aha Moments” for me. One of them understood the relationship between aperture/shutter speed/iso. Almost everything else that I have learned was a slow and continual learning, I would learn a new technique that would build on the techniques that I knew already. Followed by, practice to generate the muscle memory that gives me the ability to operate the camera without even thinking about it. I tend to operate in “clicks” rather than stops....