Friday, March 28, 2008

New Model: Jacqueline

I ended up taking a different approach with these - not everybody's going to like them, and that's OK. Anyway, check 'em out, here's Jacqueline.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

More on price increases

More Monterey Bay Aquarium fun. Click on it to see it a bit bigger - blogger doesn't do a great job of shrinking these down.

So I have some actual numbers on this now. Remember for my current collectors out there, this is good news - it means your prints are worth more. And for the rest of you, this is like knowing a stock will increase two weeks in advance. Cool, huh? This is part of a larger plan for 2008, but these are the first steps.

March 31st - change platinum prints on eBay store to match website ($125)

April 10th - new pricing for eBay store and website.

Lab Prints:
8x10 $29.95
11x14 $59.95
16x20 $124.95

Cyanotype: $100
Platinum: $150
Cyanotype Over Platinum: $250

Auction prices on eBay will still start somewhat lower (example: $24.95 for 8x10s) but as usual will be limited by eBay rules and me guessing what will sell there.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008


Click to see it bigger - at the Monterey Bay Aquarium yesterday. It's always nice to visit when I get a chance and I was sort-of-kind-of in the area and I'm a member so it was free to pop in for a bit. The only problem was that I didn't realize what a big spring break destination it is for families with kids, but that's OK, it was still fun even if it was crowded.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

New Pictures: Mouse Outdoors

OK, I'm finally catching up with my editing - here's Mouse outdoors. I'm hoping to get my last set done around the end of the week but no promises.

Monday, March 24, 2008

Price Increases

I haven't figured out all the details yet, but it's clear in 2008 I'm going to need to move a bit away from the affordable/volume end of things to a little closer to a normal market value, especially with the alt process prints (platinum, cyanotype). I'll do things in a staged fashion with lots of warning, but step 1 is basically to bring platinum print prices on eBay in line with what's on the website. Right now it's $125 on the website and $100 on eBay for various reasons that I don't think really make sense anymore. So step one is that on March 31st I'm going to change any platinum prints on eBay from $100 to $125.

(The Mouse set should be done this week - I've been swamped and have had trouble finding time to edit it, which gets us back to the first paragraph).

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

New Model: Theresa

I decided to edit the clothed shoots first since those don't take very long. I've uploaded the shots of Theresa. I also did the shots of Ashley - that was a more informal shoot and I'm not going to put up a whole set but you can see a couple of shots of her on my clothed portrait page in the red top.

This is basically going to be an ongoing backburner project - do some clothed shoots and if I have time at the end of a nude shoot and the model has a cute outfit try that as well. That way I can update that page with some recent work and see if I get any kind of a response.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

New Model: Mouse

I have the Mouse studio pictures up. Outdoor pictures in a few days - there's more of them, and I have to do my taxes before looking at them!

Saturday, March 15, 2008


It's really interesting how you get variations within a species from place to place. The flamingos I shot in the Galapagos Islands a couple of years ago have some very subtle differences versus the famous Wild Flamingos of San Francisco. See if you can spot them in these two photos.

Friday, March 14, 2008


It's so nice to actually get a chance to see the pictures I took two weeks ago. I'm doing the studio portion of the shoot with Mouse first - it's pretty short (sort of a break between two outdoor segments) and as it turns out I kind of blew the lighting for part of it so it's even shorter than it should be. But there's enough in there to make a stand-alone set even if it is rather short, and I'd rather not mix outdoor and studio. Hopefully I can convince Mouse to come back into the studio and I can do things properly!

Post Shoot Notes: Jacqueline

OK, I just finished my sixth shoot in two weeks. The portrait shoots are already edited and I mailed their prints today, but that still leaves a whole bunch of pictures to edit, so expect a variety of new pictures showing up here over the next couple of weeks.

That's Jacqueline - the second 4'9" model I've shot with (she's the same height as Kamela). I thought this was the last shot of the shoot when I pulled it for this blog, but sometimes they copy over from the cards in a funny order and it's about 20 from the end. Oh, well.

Happy Pi Day! (check post date and time)


... well, you get the idea

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Google Checkout Update

Well, it's pretty easy if you are in two scenarios. One is if you're doing a purchase of a single item. The other is if you use some commercial shopping cart system and just want to add it as a payment option. Unfortunately they expect shopping cart orders to come over in a big lump - you can't do what I'm doing now which is to add a bunch of add to cart buttons and they'll maintain the cart for you.

On the plus side they handle coupons and multiple shipping options, which would let me remove my "international shipping upgrade" kludge.

Anyway, to support it I'd have to switch to a commercial shopping cart system. My hosting account actually supports this, but it's probably more than I want to deal with at the moment. Which is a shame, because if they just allowed something parallel to what PayPal allowed I could have it up and running tonight.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Post Shoot Notes: Ashley

Ashley's just starting out with modeling, and she was willing to humor me with a test shoot. I was testing my battery unit (A Vagabond II) for my studio strobes.

There's a couple of reasons why it's nice to be able to run studio strobes off of a battery (basically a car battery with an inverter) - power failure, shooting at a portrait client's house and not having to worry about power, and being able to use a studio strobe outdoors. Like say, the beach.

In this case we were just at a little local park for a quick test. The more dramatic one uses a honeycomb grid - which basically directs the light into a spotlight - the shadows are a little wacky but point being it does work and it can overpower the background such that you don't even see it, which is an interesting option. The less dramatic one uses a brolly box (basically a backed umbrella) just filling in the shadows a bit and letting the background go a bit dark.

The battery definitely works - recycle time on one light's about the same as if it's plugged in. With two lights it takes twice as long, etc. It's good for some large number of flashes - I didn't take nearly enough shots to get near running the battery down. It's a nice little unit. The big problem with the dramatic lighting is it's all in the angles and you can't see what's happening at all in daylight, although obviously shooting digital helps to adjust the model's angle. It's probably going to take a couple of tries to nail it, but that's pretty much how it goes with anything new.

Once I get to that point in my editing backlog I'll edit the best couple of shots for her portfolio and most likely put one or two on my portrait site but there won't be any kind of a set or anything - there's not really a whole shoot or anything like that.

Monday, March 10, 2008

Little Updates

That's CK in the studio, for anybody who hasn't seen them yet.

I'm done with my two portrait shoots for the most part (just a bit of follow through, like ordering and mailing prints). I don't usually spend a lot of time talking about my portrait work, because it's kind of unfair to talk about how great these women are and then say you can't see them, but one of the tradeoffs is that it cuts into the time I can be going through the model shoots so it's relevant at the moment since I'm a bit backed up with two shoots in the can but not edited.

I have a tentative informal clothed shoot for Tuesday which is partially to test out some gear, and a nude shoot Friday. That means I do have a couple of days this week to start catching up on my editing backlog, make some alternative process prints, photograph some alternative process prints I've made but not listed for sale yet, etc. but it might very well be next week until a lot of new shots show up although once that starts there should be quite a few new images in short order. Keep in mind there's always a lot of ongoing stuff like packaging up prints to mail, going to the post office, etc. so even though an activity I mention doesn't take all day, it's easier to take up the "extra" time in the day that's not taken by ongoing tasks.

I did do one little experiment - I was curious about how PayPal subscriptions work, so I set up a little button that will let people donate $5/month to the website. I put it next to the little donate button on the right hand sidebar and I'll put a copy below. You can cancel at any time through the PayPal side. If you do this you get nothing except a warm glow in your heart - if you want goodies, just buy a print, they're not that expensive - this is more for people who get enjoyment out of the 6,000 or so free pictures on this website and wouldn't mind kicking in a few bucks but would rather spread it out rather than buy a print, or their wife will kick their butt if they bring home a picture of a naked woman, or whatever.

The other thing I'm trying to do is check out Google Checkout as an alternative to PayPal. It might be nice to give people options, especially since some people absolutely hate PayPal. But it takes a couple of days to get verified to take money so I started that process in the hope that it will be done by the time I have time to look into it more. I'll report back either way - even if I don't use it - if I find it's too hard to integrate or has some weird catch I'll let everybody know what I think.

Friday, March 07, 2008

Post Shoot Notes: Theresa

When I decided to do some clothed shoots to update the little clothed section on my portfolio site the first person I thought of was Theresa. I've admired her work/look for a long time, and we have friends in common but had never met. She was kind enough to let me shoot her today, as you can see here.

As usual, it's just one that looked good from the thumbnails, but you get the idea. I took a silly number of pictures of her - I was having fun - so I'm sure there's a bunch of gems in there that I'll find when I get a chance to look through them.

I'm not sure when I'll get to editing the full set - my queue is now two shoots deep, and I have two portrait shoots and two model shoots scheduled in the next week and might not get any chance to edit anything other than the portrait work (which always takes first priority) for a while.

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Post Shot Notes: Raelyn Mouse

So one of those is the light at sunrise, and the other is just early morning. You can see the buttery color of the true sunrise light.

Raelyn Mouse was very kind with her time and I picked her up from public transit at 6:15am (Lord knows what time she had to leave to pull that off) and dropped her off at about noon. It was a strange inefficient mix of indoors and outdoors because I had to work around the schedule of an auto repair guy - long story, I might tell it later if I can find a way to make it interesting but I think it's mostly just ranty.

As usual, just grabbed a couple of shots while everything copied from the cards, but you get the idea.

Sunday, March 02, 2008

New Pictures: CK in the Studio

Whew - It was a hard set to go through. Lots of great shots, and in particular the film came out really well and I shot more than normal (about a quarter of the final shots were film).

The picture here is probably the second most popular thing the portrait clients ask for - it's a nice shot for the curvier gals, and it's the sort of thing you can hang in the living room and if anybody asks... "Me? Why no, what gave you that idea?"

Anyway, check 'em out.

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