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Junior Lifeguards

Junior Lifeguards "Junior Lifeguards" at San Clemente Beach, CA. Photo by Derrick Story. Click on image for larger version.

These junior lifeguards are lining up for a run on the beach in San Clemente, CA. I love the kid with the shades near the front of the pack.


The Digital Story on Facebook -- discussion, outstanding images from the TDS community, and inside information. Join our celebration of great photography!


Olympus announced today that the Olympus E-PL3 will be available in September 2011 for $699.99 (with redesigned 14-42mm zoom lens).

They also add a new accessory to its PEN Micro Four Thirds system family today with the introduction of the compact VF-3 Electronic Viewfinder. Priced at $179.99, the VF-3 attaches to any Olympus PEN model with an accessory port, as well as the Olympus XZ-1, for eye-level convenience.

I have the VF-2 viewfinder, and I love it...

Also, News About the Olympus E-P3

New 14-42mm Kit Lens

Touchscreen Photography Moves Beyond iPhone with Olympus E-P3

Olympus PEN E-P3 with 12mm f/2.0 Prime Lens


The Digital Story on Facebook -- discussion, outstanding images from the TDS community, and inside information. Join our celebration of great photography!


Bee in Cactus Flower

Bee in Cactus Flower Bee in Cactus Flower: Mission San Juan Capistrano. Photo by Derrick Story. Click on image for larger version.

This bee climbed into the cactus flower and disappeared in a pool of pollen. After a few minutes, he emerged, seemingly intoxicated. I captured him in his euphoric state with a Canon 60D, 15-85mm E-FS zoom, and a polarizer filter.

Google+ has great appeal for many photographers, and causes concern with others. After a few weeks of testing, I give my first impression on this latest social networking effort from Google. I also talk about balancing photography with community when traveling. How do you get your shots while still maintaing harmony with family and friends? And finally, SizzlPix is looking for an Evangelist. Are you the right person for the job? All this and more in this week's podcast.

Listen to the Podcast

You can also download the podcast here (31 minutes). Or better yet, subscribe to the podcast in iTunes. You can support this podcast by purchasing the TDS iPhone App for only $2.99 from the Apple App Store.

Monthly Photo Assignment

Smoke is the July 2011 Photo Assignment. You can read more about how to submit on our Member Participation page. Deadline for entry is July 31, 2011.

TDS Nov. Aperture Workshop

I'm considering adding an Aperture Workshop on Nov. 12th and 13th. If you want your name on the reserve list, or just more information, drop me a line.

More Ways to Participate

Want to share photos and talk with other members in our virtual camera club? Check out our Flickr Public Group. And from those images, I choose the TDS Member Photo of the Day.

Podcast Sponsors

Red River Paper -- The $7.99 Sample Kit is back! And with free shipping.

Make Your Photos Sizzle with Color! -- SizzlPix is like High Definition TV for your photography.

Need a New Photo Bag? Check out the Lowepro Specialty Store on The Digital Story and use discount code LP20 to saven 20% at check out.




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Kite on Doheny State Beach, CA

Doheny State Beach "Kite on Doheny State Beach" by Derrick Story. Click on image for higher quality version. Canon 60D, EF-S 15-85mm zoom, and polarizer.

When I first saw this kite dancing above the beach, I zoomed in and tried to capture a close-up with the clouds. After a few frames, I decided to zoom out for a longer view. It was by far the more interesting shot.

Just goes to show that what you initially think is going to be the best shot, isn't always.


The Digital Story on Facebook -- discussion, outstanding images from the TDS community, and inside information. Join our celebration of great photography!


aperture_network_vault.jpg

I've always used external hard drives to store my Aperture 3 Vaults. And even though I work with a referenced library these days instead of a managed library, I still use the vault to back up my image adjustments, ratings, and metadata. If my computer ever fails, I want to be able to restore my work as well as my master files.

But as I experimented more with personal cloud computing, I started thinking that it would be nice to have a copy of my vault on one of those network drives that has RAID1 mirroring. So I tried it.

On my local area network, I selected the Iomega ix2 storage drive that contained two 2TB hard drives that were set up to mirror one another. I opened Aperture and selected "Add Vault" from the gear menu at the bottom of the Library pane. In the dialog box that followed, I was able to choose the Iomega ix2 from the "Shared" drives. I initiated the process for creating a new Vault... and Aperture began backing up to it.

Even though my master Raw files are not contained in the Aperture library, the back up of my previews and work is still about 50 GBs. The building of the Vault for this went slowly, taking overnight to complete the job.

Subsequent updates to the Vault have gone much faster since Aperture uses incremental archiving -- it only backs up new data or data that has changed. It's still not as fast as a connected hard drive. But, I usually just work on other things during the few minutes it takes to refresh the Vault.

With this new set-up, I find that I'm running the Vault more often because it's more convenient. I doubt that I'll ever try this over the Cloud, but over my local area network, all seems well.

More Aperture Tips and Techniques

My next Aperture Workshop is Nov, 12-13, 2011 in Santa Rosa, CA. Write me if you're interested in attending.

To learn more about Aperture 3, check out my Aperture 3 Essential Training on Lynda.com. Also, take a look at our Aperture 3 Learning Center. Tons of free content about how to get the most out of Aperture.


The Digital Story on Facebook -- discussion, outstanding images from the TDS community, and inside information. Join our celebration of great photography!


An exercise in persistence

The third gallery of TDS Member Photo of the Day images is now complete and ready for viewing. Each photo includes commentary by me discussing why I think the image is inspiring.

Each day, a new shot is featured at our community that gathers around the TDS Facebook Fan page. If you want to learn more about being a part of this terrific photography endeavor, check out the article, Why You'll Like TDS on Facebook.

Something new too... Flickr has added a Lightbox feature for viewing galleries. I highly recommend trying it for this one. You can let it autoplay, or click forward and backward manually. It's a stylish way to present these beautiful images.

Featured photo, "An exercise in persistence" by TDS Member Lynn D. Rosentrater. Click on the image to learn more about Lynn and her work.


The Digital Story on Facebook -- discussion, outstanding images from the TDS community, and inside information. Join our celebration of great photography!


Apple's latest version of the MacBook Air combines good specification and excellent portability, making it an ideal machine for mobile photographers.

MacBook Air 13

One of the key new features is the Intel HD Graphics 3000 processor with 384MB of DDR3 SDRAM that's shared with main memory. Combined with the 1.7GHz dual-core Intel Core i5 and 4 GBS of RAM, these laptops can run Photoshop, Lightroom, Aperture, and Final Cut X. I've been using all of those apps on my existing MacBook Air that's a year old, and performance has been terrific. It will be even better on the 2011 models.

Another improvement over last year's release is the backlit keyboard. I do miss having it on my existing model, and am happy that the latest version brings back that popular feature. Up the road, I'm sure Thunderbolt will be highly useful for photographers and video pros as high speed storage using this technology comes down in price. In the meantime, you still have two USB 2.0 connectors, one on each side. The MacBook Air plays friendly with external displays, so it's easy to plug into a large monitor when you return home.

As with last year's model, I still recommend the 13" model that includes the SD card slot. I find that feature extremely handy. Plus the additional screen real estate is a plus in Aperture and Final Cut Pro X. Battery life is estimated at 7 hours for the 13" vs 5 hours for the 11".

You can get the 13" with 256 GBs of Flash storage for $1,599 at the Apple Store. You'll be pleased with how well it fits in many of your camera backpacks, and the performance is solid.


The Digital Story on Facebook -- discussion, outstanding images from the TDS community, and inside information. Join our celebration of great photography!


PhotoToaster for iPad

phototoaster.jpg

I've been impressed with image editing on the iPad. For some reason, it seems more fun than on a regular computer. This is definitely the case with my latest favorite, PhotoToaster by East Coast Pixels.

Even on my first generation iPad, the performance is snappy. You have the option of working with presets, as shown in the image below, or using adjustment sliders. I've been doing both.

You have all of the expected adjustments, plus a handful of effects, and other goodies including vignettes, blur, and even borders. There's a shuffle button that randomly chooses a preset. Maybe I'm easily entertained, but sometimes I just hit the shuffle for a while to watch all the different versions of my image. All changes are reversable, and if you want to see your original image, just tap and hold.

phototoaster_editing.png

Once you've finished, you can save your image to Tumblr, Facebook, email, or your photo library.

PhotoToaster is on sale for $1.99 right now. Lots of fun, and quite powerful.

Epson R2000 Printer

The Epson Stylus Photo R2000 is a sophisticated photo printer that accommodates sheets up to 13" x 19", accepts roll paper, and even has a DVD print adapter. The 8-cartridge unit uses Epson UltraChrome Hi-Gloss 2 pigment ink and includes a Gloss Optimizer that produces a lovely finishing touch on luster and gloss papers. WiFi connectivity is included, and it's very easy to add this printer to your local network. And the best part is, that you can get the R2000 for $399. In this podcast, I take you on a hands-on tour of the Epson.

Our friends at Red River Paper have also published an excellent review of the R2000 that I recommend reading if you're interested in this unit.

Listen to the Podcast

You can also download the podcast here (24 minutes). Or better yet, subscribe to the podcast in iTunes. You can support this podcast by purchasing the TDS iPhone App for only $2.99 from the Apple App Store.

Monthly Photo Assignment

Smoke is the July 2011 Photo Assignment. You can read more about how to submit on our Member Participation page. Deadline for entry is July 31, 2011.

TDS Nov. Aperture Workshop

I'm considering adding an Aperture Workshop on Nov. 12th and 13th. If you want your name on the reserve list, or just more information, drop me a line.

More Ways to Participate

Want to share photos and talk with other members in our virtual camera club? Check out our Flickr Public Group. And from those images, I choose the TDS Member Photo of the Day.

Podcast Sponsors

Red River Paper -- The $7.99 Sample Kit is back! And with free shipping.

Make Your Photos Sizzle with Color! -- SizzlPix is like High Definition TV for your photography.

Need a New Photo Bag? Check out the Lowepro Specialty Store on The Digital Story and use discount code LP20 to saven 20% at check out.




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