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John Nack has posted a few useful reminders about Photoshop CS4 for users who haven't found this info yet. Most of the tips are workarounds for tweaks to the application that may be frustrating folks, such as changes to keyboard shortcuts or what appears to be mysteriously missing features. Plus he has tips for drag and drop layers, trackpad annoyances, and more.

If you're a CS4 user, then be sure to check out this post. It could save you a headache or two.


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Learn what photographers need to know to organize and edit their images with Photoshop CS4. Take a look at The Photoshop CS4 Companion for Photographers. It fits in your laptop bag and is very easy on your wallet.


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Facebook is a popular social network that many people use to share photos with friends and family. iPhoto shines at organizing and editing pictures. With its latest release, iPhoto '09, Apple built Facebook connectivity right into their consumer photography application. Now you can organize your images in iPhoto, then click a button and publish them on Facebook.

As you would imagine, there more to this partnership than initially meets the eye. In my latest Lynda.com title, iPhoto '09: 10 Things to Know About Facebook, I show you the 10 things you need to know to publish efficiently on Facebook with iPhoto. You'll learn:

  1. Connecting iPhoto with your Facebook account
  2. Making iPhoto Faces work with Facebook
  3. Choosing and uploading iPhoto images
  4. Learning more about Facebook photo albums
  5. Making image edits to Facebook pictures via iPhoto
  6. Making metadata changes to Facebook pictures via iPhoto
  7. Downloading Facebook changes to your iPhoto library
  8. Downloading existing Facebook photo albums to iPhoto
  9. Searching for photos on Facebook
  10. Things to be wary of on Facebook

You can learn more by visiting the iPhoto '09: 10 Things to Know About Facebook home page.


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A Look Inside Shutterfly for iPhone

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As a regular Shutterfly user, I was happy to see they've released Shutterfly for iPhone. The free software makes it easy to view all of your albums on the venerable photo sharing/printing service, and you can upload images from your iPhone to Shutterfly. I like that it's a two-way service, but I think the strength of this application is how nicely it lets you carry years of image making around in your pocket.

When you launch the app and log in to your account, you can view albums, take a picture, or upload an existing photo. If you push an image up to Shutterfly, it creates a new album in your My Albums section called iPhone Pictures. All subsequent iPhone images are stored there.

Once your pictures are stored on Shutterfly's service, there they stay. On April 11, 2009, Shutterly members received a letter from Jeffrey Housenbold, President & CEO. He noted that as a member, you receive free, secure, storage and your pictures will not be deleted. This is true. I've been a member of the free service since 2002, and all of my albums are still online there, safe and sound.

This leads to the strength of the Shutterfly for iPhone app. You can access and show off all of that work. Your images display beautifully on iPhone's high resolution screen, in either horizontal or vertical mode. You can shake or swipe to move from one picture to another. In my case, this allows me to share years of work by simply tapping on my iPhone screen.

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If you're already a Shutterfly customer with content on their servers, I think you'll enjoy the new access you have to your work. Also, new users can build a robust online storage, sharing, and printing workflow with these tools. For uploading lots of pictures, using your computer and Shutterfly's other tools are the better way to go. But for viewing and sending up the occasional snapshot, the Shutterfly for iPhone app is terrific.

More iPhone App Reviews

Cropulater Brings Picture Cropping to the iPhone

Panorama 2.1 for the iPhone

FotoTimer Provides Self-Timer for the iPhone

HP iPrint App Makes Printing Easy from iPhone or iPod touch

True Photo App for iPhone: CameraBag

"Exposure" (Now "Darkslide") Puts Flickr on Your iPhone


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Closing of Virgin and Thriving of Apple

I was struck by irony as I photographed the closing of Virgin Records in San Francisco. The once megastore of music with its flashing lights and state of the art individual listening stations is now an empty shell. Just a few months ago, you could buy any CD imaginable, then choose from a variety of accessories to go with it: posters, clothing, music players. On Friday nights, it was a great place to just hang out.

Now, as they liquidate the fixtures in Virgin, across the street there's standing room only in the Apple Store. For $79 you can buy a 4 GB iPod, connect it to your computer, and fill it up with music. An entire CD library can be clipped to your shirt. The device is so light that you wouldn't know it was there, save the earbuds humming in your ears.

It's one thing to contemplate how quickly times have changed as you listen to music through tiny headphones. It's another to see it happen with your very own eyes.

Photo by Derrick Story. Captured with a Canon 5D Mark II, 24-105 mm f/4 zoom at 24mm. ISO 200, 1/250th at f/11. Image was processed in Adobe Camera Raw. Used Jobo photoGPS for geodata.

More Signs of the Times Stories

Redwood Empire Food Bank

The Closing of Gottschalks Department Stores


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I'm getting ready to work on a big Flickr project, and I'd love to hear about your favorite features and your best tips. What do you like best about Flickr? Do you use any tools with it, such as plug-ins for uploading? Have you learned any helpful techniques that you're willing to share with others?

If you have answers for any of these, please post a comment below (only hit the Post button once, it takes a couple minutes to process), or chime in on the discussion page of The Digital Story Public Group. I've already set up a thread there. You can also send you thoughts directly to me, if you're more comfortable with that. Contact information is on our Submissions page.

I hope you share your thoughts... (and thanks!)


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Right click to copy geodata in iPhoto 8.0.2

One of my favorite new features in iPhoto 8.0.2 is the ability to copy geodata from one image in your library and paste it to another. The process is easy, but it isn't necessarily intuitive. Here's how it works.

First, select a photo that has the location data that you want by clicking on it once. Then, right-click or CTRL-click on it and choose Copy from the contextual popup menu. Then, go directly to the image that you want to add the data to, right-click on it, and choose Paste Location from the contextual popup menu. You can confirm the success of this by choosing Get Info (click on the little "i" in the corner of the photo), or by looking at the extended metadata for the image (Option - CMD - I) -- you should see Latitude, Longitude, and Place information.

Paste Location Data in Image

Don't Forget About Smart Albums

You can create Smart Albums to sort images that have geodata from those that don't. Just go to File > New Smart Album, and choose "Photo - is not - Tagged with GPS" as your conditions. This will create a Smart Album with all of your untagged images. Then, if you want a companion album with tagged photos, just create a new Smart Album with "Photo - is - Tagged with GPS". Now you can easily copy location data from tagged images and apply to untagged ones.

See My Other Posts on Geotagging

Macworld Magazine Article (by me): "Geotag your photos on-the-go"

A Quick Primer on Geotagging

"Introduction to Geotagging" - Digital Photography Podcast 165

Testing the Eye-Fi Explore Card at Home

Geotagging a Journey with photoGPS, iPhoto, and Flickr

iPhoto '09 as Your Geotagging Tool?

First Look at Jobo photoGPS Device and Software

Update to Geotagging Workflow, Including Jobo photoGPS

Finding a Reasonable Geotagging Workflow


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Karen and Ethan Portrait

One of my favorite techniques for quick outdoor portraits is what I call "Spot Meter Plus Backlight." The set up is simple. Put the sun behind the subject with a clean background. Then adjust your metering pattern to spot meter, take a reading off the subject, and fire away. You'll get nice highlights in the hair, good separation between the subject and background, plus you can work quickly and from any distance.

For this quick portrait of Karen and Ethan, I used a Canon 5D Mark II, 70-200mm f/2.8 zoom, and that's it. The aperture was set to f/4, shutter speed 1/350th, and ISO 200. I had the lens extended all the way out to 200mm. I processed the image in Aperture with final touches in Photoshop CS4.


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Wondering which of the new offerings might be best for you: the Nikon D-5000 or the Canon EOS Rebel T1i? Well, Cameratown has just published their Nikon D-5000 vs. Canon EOS Rebel T1i Feature Comparison Chart. How does HD video capture stack up? Resolution? LCD display? Burst rate? The chart reveals all.


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Now Available! The Digital Photography Companion. The official guide for The Digital Story Virtual Camera Club.

  • 25 handy and informative tables for quick reference.
  • Metadata listings for every photo in the book
  • Dedicated chapter on making printing easy.
  • Photo management software guide.
  • Many, many inside tips gleaned from years of experience.
  • Comprehensive (214 pages), yet fits easily in camera bag.

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Here's a nifty article about four tools that capture location data while you shoot. All of these devices cost less than $200, yet provide decent geotagging. In the piece, Geotag your photos on-the-go, I cover the Nikon P6000 camera, Eye-Fi Explore, the PhotoTrackr, and the photoGPS. It's a quick read with a good overview of these devices.

See My Other Posts on Geotagging

A Quick Primer on Geotagging

"Introduction to Geotagging" - Digital Photography Podcast 165

Testing the Eye-Fi Explore Card at Home

Geotagging a Journey with photoGPS, iPhoto, and Flickr

iPhoto '09 as Your Geotagging Tool?

First Look at Jobo photoGPS Device and Software

Update to Geotagging Workflow, Including Jobo photoGPS

Finding a Reasonable Geotagging Workflow


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When Max and Zach invited me to a "behind the scenes" tour with their mom at the Redwood Empire Food Bank in Santa Rosa, I jumped at the opportunity to learn more about one of my favorite non-profits in Sonoma County, CA. The boys had raised $135.80, and wanted to hand it over personally to Miriam Hodgman, the Food Drive & Event Coordinator for the organization.

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What I learned during my visit is that this food bank provides assistance to more than 60,000 hungry people a month, distributing over 10 million pounds of food a year. Forty-two percent of the funding comes from individuals like Max and Zach.

One program that caught my eye is called "3 Squares." For less than $4, the food bank can provide 12 meals for a family of four. The boxed meal includes all of the ingredients for entrees such as Black Bean Chili or Spanish Rice with Vegetables. I was struck by the fact that so little money could make such a big difference.

If you're looking for a way to help others who may be struggling right now, consider contacting your local food bank. They are experts at bringing together resources from businesses, individuals, and charities to provide immediate relief to hungry people. There are no qualifications required to receive help. If someone is hungry, they will receive food.

You can learn more by visiting the Redwood Empire Food Bank web site. There's lots of good educational information there.

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Photos from top to bottom: Top-The 3 Squares program with boxed meals ready to deliver. Middle-Max applies a label to a 3 Squares box. Bottom-One of the many areas of the Food Bank where supplies are organized. Pictures by Derrick Story, captured with a Canon 5D Mark II.

More Signs of the Times Stories

The Closing of Gottschalks Department Stores


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