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Messages - awinphoto

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46
Software & Accessories / Re: software for designing wedding albums
« on: October 18, 2013, 01:55:48 PM »
Indesign is a big program to learn, especially like any adobe product like photoshop.  It is the industry standard, along side with Quark when it comes to creating catalogs, flyers, brochures, books, etc...  You will have create everything from scratch assuming you dont have a template to jump off of...  You can create some awesome albums with indesign, but learning how to do it isn't as intuitive. Good luck with your endeavors. 

47
Canon General / Re: PPA and Insurance
« on: October 14, 2013, 01:23:48 PM »
I just looked... is this equipment insurance or health insurance...  I was looking for health/medical insurance... it appears this is equipment insurance.
I'm sorry, I'm still in my Monday morning fog  :-[.  I misread your post, but in terms of health insurance, I'm guessing PPA will probably do what the MLA (Modern Language Association) and other creative groups have done and drop their health insurance due to Obamacare.  If you're reasonably young and healthy, your best bet is a high deductible plan with riders for Rx and a handful of office visits.  That keeps your premium low, but is what's called catastrophic insurance, which means that if you get really sick or injured, you'll have to cough up $4k or whatever your deductible is to cover the bills.  I did this when I was younger with the theory that I and my family could scrounge up the money should I fall of a ladder or something.  Humana and United generally offer pretty good plans.

Otherwise, you'll have to take your chances on the new exchange.  Just be sure not to buy the really cheap plans from unheard of companies.  There's a company out of Texas called UICI that has changed it's name 10x and operates 100 shell companies.  They are the scourge of the insurance industry (I have 10 years in this world) and have had the unfortunate luck of having to deal with them for my wife's claims.  If you've ever seen The Rainmaker, they are the real Great Benefit.  Go with a brand company, Blue Cross, Cigna, Humana, United, and you'll have the same lousy insurance as the rest of us, but you won't get totally screwed.

Thanks for your input =)

48
Canon General / Re: PPA and Insurance
« on: October 14, 2013, 11:55:18 AM »
It's been a few years since I looked into this, but the best deal I found was to join the North American Nature Photographers Association (NANPA) and buy insurance through Chubb (Rand Insurance is the broker).  You don't have to shoot nature photos to join or anything, but that's who the majority of members are in the association.  I've had two fairly small claims with them and they were extremely easy to deal with and processed my check quickly.

Membership is $100/year (NANPA) and the annual rate is $0.0245 per dollar of insurance.  It was the best deal I could find, but in my case, I didn't need the PPA benefits or professional liability insurance.  If I remember, PPA is $250/yr or more and their insurance was more like $0.04 / per dollar of insurance.  The only thing you don't want to do is go through your homeowners policy.  That's a guaranteed way to lose your money as they will instantly deny any claims they suspect are "commercial use".  Here are the links:
http://www.nanpa.org/equipment_insurance.php
http://www.randinsurance.com/Site/581886336/Nanpa.asp


I just looked... is this equipment insurance or health insurance...  I was looking for health/medical insurance... it appears this is equipment insurance. 

49
Canon General / Re: PPA and Insurance
« on: October 14, 2013, 11:53:11 AM »
It's been a few years since I looked into this, but the best deal I found was to join the North American Nature Photographers Association (NANPA) and buy insurance through Chubb (Rand Insurance is the broker).  You don't have to shoot nature photos to join or anything, but that's who the majority of members are in the association.  I've had two fairly small claims with them and they were extremely easy to deal with and processed my check quickly.

Membership is $100/year (NANPA) and the annual rate is $0.0245 per dollar of insurance.  It was the best deal I could find, but in my case, I didn't need the PPA benefits or professional liability insurance.  If I remember, PPA is $250/yr or more and their insurance was more like $0.04 / per dollar of insurance.  The only thing you don't want to do is go through your homeowners policy.  That's a guaranteed way to lose your money as they will instantly deny any claims they suspect are "commercial use".  Here are the links:
http://www.nanpa.org/equipment_insurance.php
http://www.randinsurance.com/Site/581886336/Nanpa.asp


Thanks for responding...  PPA yearly for active photographers are $323, 273 if you dont want indemnification insurance... a healthy charge since I would JUST be interested in the insurance, especially if i was to find out that it wasn't that great to begin with.  I've never heard of NANPA, but i will definitely look them up.  Is it actual insurance or one of those saving plans or set-ups where you pay up front and get reimbursed?  If it was just me it would be one thing, but i do have a wife and kids so i want to make sure they are taken care of.  =)  Thanks for your input!

50
Canon General / PPA and Insurance
« on: October 14, 2013, 10:21:41 AM »
Ok.... So here's my conundrum...  I work with a large agency doing professional photography, as well as portrait photography on the side... I currently work around 60-80 hours a week and it's very taxing... i currently get my insurance and benefits from the agency i'm with.  I was approached by another individual to start our own agency...  potentially a lot more money, freedom, and get to do what i like to do when I want to do it, and no more 60-80 hours a week working... sounds great right?  Well while all the logistics is fairly reasonable and we are ironing everything out, the one thing that could be a big monkey wrench is healthcare, especially with the new obamacare rules and regs.  so... we were looking at options and from what we can see from the "marketplace" the insurances are outrageous in premiums, no where near what we are paying now, but what can we do.   We saw that as a benefit of the PPA, professional photographers of america, they have access to a broker who does insurance.  Has anyone used them?  Are they cheaper than other options?  Although i shoot professionally, i've never seen a need or a desire to join the PPA as i find that it's mostly pomp and circumstance and gladhanding and such.  I find selling a picture more rewarding than winning an award from some competition judged by people i dont know using rules that may be questionable with agendas up the wazoo... BUT... if their insurance is worth the cost of yearly membership and such, maybe it could be an option.  Have any of you guys tried this out?  I would be interested in hearing your opinions.  Thanks

51
Canon General / Re: Irritating photography advice
« on: October 07, 2013, 04:28:10 PM »
The 1DX is an unnecessary upgrade from the 5D III no matter WHAT you shoot

 for me that is true...  or should I say for me that is true for the wife.

Your wife shouldn't know the difference between a 350D + battery grip and a 1Dx  ;)

( Oh why Oh why did Canon paint the 70-300 L white ?? ).  :(

but the wife WOULD know the difference in $$$ and $$$$ lol

52
Canon General / Re: Irritating photography advice
« on: October 07, 2013, 04:26:51 PM »
The 1DX is an unnecessary upgrade from the 5D III no matter WHAT you shoot

 for me that is true...  or should I say for me that is true for the wife.

hahaha a happy wife, a happy life =)

53
Canon General / Re: Irritating photography advice
« on: October 07, 2013, 11:36:01 AM »
Or the other extreme, you NEED 2.8 lenses or faster to be taken seriously... or even better yet, you need all prime lenses. 

54
Nice job... I loved your panning/sliding shots... 

55
Third Party Manufacturers / Re: NEW TOY :)
« on: September 27, 2013, 05:15:24 PM »
Man that reminds me of my first film camera =)  enjoy

56
EOS Bodies - For Stills / Re: RAW or JPEG
« on: September 27, 2013, 10:35:29 AM »
This is the last i'm going to mention this topic on this forum at least...  Yes, i'm not arguing Raws are the ideal digital negative way to go in most situations.  Yes, hard drives are cheap(er), albeit the hard drives that serve my purpose are typically in the 150+ range, and those usually have to go through some convincing to my wife and business partner that they are necessary, and frankly, a lot of it would go to waste.  Yes lightroom is great, although I hardly ever use it... I grew up a photoshop guy, and I do plan on purchasing that special adobe has now with the photoshop/lightroom, but other than large wedding jobs, it is unknown how often honestly i'd use it.  I reserve the right to retract that statement in 6 months but at this point, it is what it is.  90% of my personal pictures if not more typically go into iphoto and stay there as it's more convenient for me, works with my apple tv, and is easy to email/transfer/manage.  A byproduct is that iphoto, at least my version, doesn't support raw, but thats typically fine with me as most of my personal images dont need it and i'm not going to waste any more time on them that isn't needed. 

That's not to come off as elitist or bragging or even incompetency, but frankly with my business, i literally work over 60 hours a week, sometimes closer to 80 hours a week busting my ass, taking photos, processing, delivering, consulting, presenting, etc...  Time for me is sacred.  I work at least 40 hours a week shooting products and catalog photography for companies to post on their websites and once a month to publish a catalog.  Most images, even for catalog, at 5-6 inches tall, downscaled, heavily photoshoped,clipped, and gasp, shot with an aps-c 50D camera they provide.  Before they used me, their previous photographers literally took the photos on the ground on their carpet with a point and shoot nokin, i mean nikon, and looked hideous.  I built them a studio and took them from point and shoot cameras to DSLR's... i'm always trying to convince them to go full frame, but they are not willing to spend the money let alone pay my fee's to use my gear.  Extra detail, it doesn't matter when it's downresed and clipped and shoved on the internet in srgb at 640 pixels wide.  Even the catalogs, it all would be wasted anyways when it's commercial web-printed in cmyk with no spot colors since they once again, wont pay for spot colors.  Hell with cmyk blues are purple, neons are shot, and gamut becomes a huge problem anyway.  What almost all of you are missing is yeah, all that detail would look awesome printed on a nice 16x20 on a wall or other digital display, but really in most commercial cases, it doesn't matter and gets wasted. 

Now, when i shoot models and know there's a possibility they will buy the image as a 30x45 or something big like that, I want every ounce of detail i can get... They are printed at my lab on photo paper with high quality inks... The moral of the story, yes, I could go through the work of the RAW files... sometimes they are warranted and sometimes they are worth it... sometimes they would be wasted and wasting my time and would have minimal impact on final output in which i proudly have literally changed the industry standard in imagery in the photo matter I am shooting.  So yeah... thanks but I know what i'm doing. 

57
Software & Accessories / Re: How big do you print?
« on: September 27, 2013, 10:11:30 AM »
Does tradeshow booth murals count?  Approx 20 feet on the long side albeit usually printed at 100-150 dpi? 

58
EOS Bodies - For Stills / Re: RAW or JPEG
« on: September 26, 2013, 01:27:51 PM »
I find it hard to understand people who enjoy photography as a hobby or job and spend a lot of money on equipment, endlessly pontificating the "colours and contrast" of a specific lens, but don't embrace that RAW gives you the capability to mimic any of them, jpeg doesn't. As for computer time, in the time it takes to upload your images to your computer it can create identical jpegs to the ones your camera can make. There doesn't need to be any additional time spent when using RAW over jpeg.

This is the point very few people understand...  I shoot professionally.  I know down to a science how long it takes to go through each card, saving each card, processing and culling the raws, time it takes my computer to process 100% of my raws so i can compare side by side and I know that there is a complete different time table from Raw to Jpeg.  I know when I need it and when I dont.  I embrace Raws when I need and when I dont.  I know many professional photographers who shoot just raw, and I know equally if not more who shoot jpegs.  I know turnaround times are vital.  In an industry of additional people trying to be "pros", speed, quality and competency are separating factors.  When I can get away with it, I will shoot jpeg as it gives me a tad speed advantage from shoot to delivery, and typically at that time i'm shooting for delivery.  I'm getting it right in camera.  But if i get repeating work from that client because i'm faster than everyone else, i'm not going to apologize for that.  I know my tools and know what I need to get my job done the most efficiently.  Sometimes that's Raw, sometimes thats jpeg

59
EOS Bodies - For Stills / Re: RAW or JPEG
« on: September 26, 2013, 01:15:33 PM »
Sometimes no matter how hard you try, you can't set the camera properly for jpegs...

Fo example, an animal runs across a partially treed field. you have about 10 seconds to get your picture and the animal is alternating betwwen sunlight and shade... what you set white balance for?

Your totally overthinking it...  Ok... sunlight WB is approx 5500-6000 kelvin and shade is about 6500-8000 kelvin depending on strength of clouds and or shade and other contaminating light and that is just a difference of adding or subtracting some yellow/red if needed at all.  AWB or daylight and if your exposure is dead on, a little color adjust is super super easy in photoshop/lightroom, takes less than 5 seconds.  It's not like going from sun to incandescent lights or florescents or etc... 

60
EOS Bodies - For Stills / Re: RAW or JPEG
« on: September 26, 2013, 01:03:02 PM »
When one of my students of photography asks me if should learn and practice RAW processing in Lightroom, I reply that it is only useful in the future if he feel "limited" by the possibilities of correction JPEG. I make sure they learn and practice extensively diaphragm aperture settings, shutter speed, and manual ISO. ;) Only when they are able to consciously choose every setting on the camera, they should start with RAW and Lightroom. I still see many professional photographers shooting in "Green rectangle" because after doing the photos, Lightroom saves your mistakes. :-[ I do not claim that all users of Lightroom think this way, but surely there are many who do. :o

Green rectangle is jpeg only on most cameras. It is an idiot/foolproof mode and completely different from P mode.
This is the point, brother. There is no good camera for those who do not know how to use properly. :( It would not make much difference if they use Program mode, Aperture priority mode, Speed priority mode. :-[ There is no camera that is foolproof. ;)

Dont tell that to Joe Buissink who shoots jpeg and P mode during multi thousand dollar weddings...  skill trumps all =)

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