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I was thinking about last week's podcast during a morning shoot on Las Vegas Blvd., and how reflections could be used creatively.

IMG_0310-1024.jpg "Las Vegas Reflection" - Canon G5X Mark II - Photo by Derrick Story.

It began when I spotted a group of buildings across the street reflected in a store window. I thought the elements worked well together, creating an interesting juxtaposition of shape and color. This motivated me to seek out more compositions.

Woman with Yellow Hair "Woman with Yellow Hair" - Canon G5X Mark II - Photo by Derrick Story.

One of the things that I talked about in the podcast was how two worlds could be captured at once using reflections. In the "Woman with Yellow Hair" image, we have the one group going in the doors while a shadowy stranger approaches in the reflection. They work nice together, and I think all of the elements are more interesting as a group than just any single person.

Then there are more active reflections, where I have both versions of the subject in the same frame.

Man in Red Shirt "Man in Red Shirt" - Canon G5X Mark II - Photo by Derrick Story.

In the "Man with Red Shirt" photo, it appears that he is admiring himself in the glass. I think he's merely watching the street below, but I don't know for sure... and that interests me. Plus we have the other group visible in the glass but not in reality.

And finally, I combine two "mistakes" in the "Tourist Pointing" photograph. I have the reflection of the man in the white shirt, and just his physical hand on the right edge, adding "off-framing" to the mix. Viewers may or may not spot his hand, and that's part of the fun.

Tourist Pointing "Tourist Pointing" - Canon G5X Mark II - Photo by Derrick Story.

I captured a variety of images that hot morning in Las Vegas, many of which I like. And the reflections series definitely added some variety to the mix.

You can share your thoughts at the TDS Facebook page, where I'll post this story for discussion.

Canon's new premium compact, the G5X Mark II, now has RAW support from Adobe thanks to Lightroom 2.4. Since I'm shooting with the camera in Las Vegas, what better place to try out the new .CR3 files? And while we're at it, let's revisit the newish PhotoMerge that was added to Lightroom (CC) earlier this year. I'll start with the RAW files.

.CR3 RAW Decoding with Lightroom 2.4

New York, Las Vegas Canon G5X II with single RAW file processed in Lightroom 2.4. Photo by Derrick Story

Overall, I thought the .CR3 RAW files were moderately responsive in Lightroom 2.4. Shadows opened up reasonably well. I could recover highlights, although I was wanting for more recovery for many of my shots. Color and sharpness were very good. Overall, a thumbs-up rating.

IMG_0139-1024.jpg Canon G5X II with single RAW file processed in Lightroom 2.4. Photo by Derrick Story

I'm looking forward to comparing Capture One's decoding of the .CR3 files once it releases its RAW update. As I look at the Lightroom versions, I feel like there is a little "pop" missing with this tandem. I could be wrong. Time will tell when I have something to compare it to.

Bottom line, however, if you're already a Lightroom user and have been considering the Canon G5X Mark II, then the coast is clear. The RAW decoding is solid.

Photo Merge with .CR3 Files in Lightroom 2.4

Earlier this year, Adobe added HDR merging to its Creative Cloud version of Lightroom. I had worked with it previously, but I felt that these .CR3 files in Las Vegas would be perfect for further research. I was right. This was fun.

NYNY Restaurants HDR NYNY Restaurants - Canon G5X II with three RAW files processed in Lightroom 2.4. Photo by Derrick Story

The Canon G5X II doesn't have an HDR mode per se (HDR Backlight doesn't count for me), but it does have the traditional Canon Auto Exposure Bracketing (AEB). So I set the self-timer to 2 seconds, and set AEB to -1.7, 0, +1.7 and captured my .CR3 source files while exploring the interiors of some of my favorite hotels.

I then tapped Photo Merge in Lightroom 2.4 (Photo > Photo Merge > HDR Merge) and let the software do its thing. The result was a great looking DNG file that I could further edit in Lightroom if I wished.

Before the Party Begins Before the Party Begins - Canon G5X II with three RAW files processed in Lightroom 2.4. Photo by Derrick Story

From earlier testing with the G5X II, I had already felt that the Jpegs produced by the 20MP 1" Stacked CMOS sensor and DIGIC 8 processor were definitely street photography worthy.

But now, with RAW processing available in Lightroom and tapping Photo Merge as well, I can squeeze a lot of quality out of this compact if I just slow down a bit and use good technique. I still have another day here on location. I'll see what I can get next with it. But to this point, the Lightroom 2.4/Canon G5X II dynamic duo are getting the job done.

You can share your thoughts at the TDS Facebook page, where I'll post this story for discussion.

This is The Digital Story Podcast #701, August 20, 2019. Today's theme is "The Art of Mistakes and Miscalculations." I'm Derrick Story.

Opening Monologue

Mistakes are sometimes in the eye of the beholder. An off-center subject may be viewed by one person as poor composition and seen as dynamic by another. After visiting the exhibition, Don't! Photography and the Art of Mistakes at SF MOMA, I have 5 techniques that can be dazzling to some folks and head-scratching to others. Tune in and see which camp you fall in to.

The Art of Mistakes and Miscalculations

I want to start by reading you the opening text to the exhibit at SF MOMA, because I think it frames this conversation well.

In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, proscriptive texts by self-proclaimed photography experts proliferated in amateur manuals and periodicals. The next generation saw the rise of photographers who challenged these rules and strictures.

Pairing modernist images by artists including Man Ray, Florence Henri, and Lisette Model with historical documents, this exhibition examines the shifting definitions of "good" and "bad" photography, while considering how tastes evolved during this transformative period for the medium.

BTW: This show runs through Dec. 1. So if you're in San Francisco, I highly recommend visiting MOMA and seeing it for yourself.

So here are five of these "mistakes" that could turn into real works of art.

5 Techniques that Could be Wonderful

  • Off-Framing - In the early days of photography, tripods were required because of the low sensitivity of photo medium. Compositions tended to squared up and realistic. But as film speeds increased and handheld photography became more common, so did composing mistakes and victories. One of my favorites is the 1956 image, "Little Man, Stepping Off a Cable Car" by Dorothea Lang.
  • Reflections - Shop windows, for example, can be perplexing for photographers. If you shoot straight on, you see yourself in the picture. From an angle, the surrounding environment appears in the shot. Many books recommended avoiding this situation all together. That is until more adventurous photographers began to integrate these reflections into their shots showing dual realities at once.
  • Motion Blur - Standard advice to prevent motion blur was to use faster film, adequate lighting, and increase the shutter speed. But later artists discovered that blur could actually convey motion or indicate speed. And to even get more creative, a blurred moving face could convey an emotional state.
  • Distortion - Photographers were instructed to not position an arm, hand, or leg closer to the lens than the other parts of the body because distortion would elongate or enlarge that body part. But then more adventurous artists discovered that they could create abstractions, similar to modern art techniques, that departed from making photographs always look realistic.
  • Lens Flare - Photographers were cautioned about pointing their lenses in the direction of strong light sources, such as a bright lamp or the sun, because it increased the chances of lens flare. But because of its unpredictable nature, art photographers embraced the technique and were eager to see how the effects of flare impacted their compositions.

Photography is an ever-evolving medium. And the rules are seldom adhered to for very long. And to be honest, sometimes images that feature these "mistakes" are far more interesting than the "perfect" ones.

New Course Offering: Podcast Skills

A course on podcasting has been the number 1 request for new workshop topics. And after some time thinking about the best way to make this happen, I've come up with a one day skills course that you can attend from home, or wherever you have an Internet connection.

This one day event will cover the following topics:

  • Recording Hardware
  • Editing Software
  • Concept and Creation
  • Essential Storytelling Techniques
  • Show Notes
  • Syndication and RSS Feeds
  • Getting Your Show on Apple Podcasts, Google Play Music, Stitcher, and More
  • Adding Music to Your Show (and Where to Get It)
  • Editing Workflow
  • Promoting Your Podcast
  • The Ins and Outs of Advertising and Sponsorships

The topics will be divided into modules and presented live, and they will be recorded as movies as well. Each participant will receive the catalog of HD movies from the day as part of their tuition.

The course will include insider tips, best practice techniques, and multiple Q&A sessions. Each participant is also entitled to one follow up one-on-one session after the workshop to address questions unique to his or her goals.

The live course, set of recorded videos, and the follow up one-on-one session costs only $249. Inner Circle Members get a 10 percent discount on tuition.

The first two course dates are scheduled for October 12 and November 9, 2019. Participation is limited to 10 people per course, first come, first served. Registration is open now at How Do You Listen to Your Podcasts?. Pop over and let us know if you're a Spotify, Overcast, Apple Podcasts, or fan of some other platform for listening to your shows. Plus, it's fun to see what others are saying.

moma-1024.jpg

Alfred Stieglitz: 5 Random Don'ts

From the SF MOMA exhibit: Don't! Photography and the Art of Mistakes.

  • Don't believe you must be a pictorial photographer... Bad pictorial photography, like bad "art painting," is a crime.
  • Don't plagiarize if you can help it. It can't give you any real pleasure to know yourself akin to a thief.
  • Don't believe you became an artist the instant you received a gift Kodak on Christmas morning.
  • Don't believe that experts are born. They are the results of hard work.
  • Don't go through life with your eyes closed, even though you may have chosen photography as your vocation. The machine may see for you, but its eye is dead. Your eye should furnish it with life. But don't believe that all open eyes see. Seeing needs practice - just like photography itself.

PS: Don't believe I claim any originality for the above random remarks.

From Photographic Topics 7, January 1909.

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Updates and Such

Inner Circle Members: A big thanks to those who support our podcast and our efforts!

B&H and Amazon tiles on www.thedigitalstory. If you click on them first, you're helping to support this podcast. And speaking of supporting this show, and big thanks to our Patreon Inner Circle members:

And finally, be sure to visit our friends at Red River Paper for all of your inkjet supply needs.

See you next week!

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 - Keep up with the world of inkjet printing, and win free paper, by liking Red River Paper on Facebook.

Portfoliobox - Your PortfolioBox site is the best way to show off your best images.

The Nimbleosity Report

Do you want to keep up with the best content from The Digital Story and The Nimble Photographer? Sign up for The Nimbleosity Report, and receive highlights twice-a-month in a single page newsletter. Be a part of our community!

Want to Comment on this Post?

You can share your thoughts at the TDS Facebook page, where I'll post this story for discussion.

When photographing people in motion, I prefer to have the action coming toward me, not moving away. I think it makes for a more dynamic image. Here's an example.

IMGP9157-Kunde-Move-In-1024.jpg Moving In - The more exciting shot is the movers coming up the stairs toward me, not me at the bottom having them go out of the frame. Photo by Derrick Story.

Another technique that I use to get people shots when they are in a group is to position myself so they are "walking through me" and I photograph them during this process. (This is helpful for tours and other situations like that.) Also, the idea of having a photographer standing there taking pictures usually causes a few reactions and smiles along the way.

IMGP9204-PET-Welcome-1024.jpg

Of course the trick to all of this is you being comfortable enough to position yourself front and center in the action. Generally speaking, photo subjects are fine with this. You will get reactions such as people covering their face or giving you an odd look. But it's all part of the mix. And if you're there in an official capacity, this technique is even easier.

Give this a try yourself. Try these shots from both angles, and see which one is more interesting to you.

You can share your thoughts at the TDS Facebook page, where I'll post this story for discussion.

Students at Santa Rosa Junior College are preparing to return to class, so I've been on campus capturing images for the PR Dept. The weather is hot and the light is harsh. So I've been leaning on fill flash to help me tame the contrast.

IMGP8783-SRJC-08-14-19-1024.jpg Fill flash outdoors to help tame contrasty light. Photo by Derrick Story.

My preferred strobe is the Metz mecablitz 26 AF-2 Flash ($129) that's available for practically every brand of camera. It's compact, versatile, and works seamlessly with my Pentax and Olympus bodies.

The nice thing about fill flash is that you can let the gear do all of the calculations for you. In this environment, I put the camera in program mode and set the flash to TTL. The two units work together to provide me with a balanced exposure.

The results are typically very good. And for any type of environmental portrait in harsh lighting, the subjects benefit greatly from this technique.

Indoors, I often position the flash in the up position (bounce lighting), then rubber band a white business card behind the head. This creates a nice little diffused light source that's more pleasing for skin tones in flatter light.

IMGP8814-SRJC-08-14-19-1024.jpg Fill flash indoors to augment existing light. Photo by Derrick Story.

The Metz mecablitz is smaller than my iPhone, so I can carry it in my pocket. Or better yet, just leave it on the camera.

IMG_3857.jpg Metz flash mounted on a Pentax KP. So compact, but quite powerful.

Either way, if you have to come away with good portraits in bad lighting, fill flash can save the day.

You can share your thoughts at the TDS Facebook page, where I'll post this story for discussion.

This is The Digital Story Podcast #700, August 13, 2019. Today's theme is "Street Photography with the Canon G5X Mark II." I'm Derrick Story.

Opening Monologue

The Canon G5X Mark II is compact enough to fit in your pants pocket, but it pairs a 24-120mm zoom lens with a 20.2 MP 1" Stacked CMOS Sensor. That's a lot of imaging potential in a small package. And it seemed to me worthy of serious street photography. So I headed off to South San Francisco to see what it could do. I share my findings on today's TDS Photography Podcast.

Street Photography with the Canon G5X Mark II

Canon-G5X-Front-1024.jpg

You may be wondering why my first inclination for the Canon G5X was for street photography. Well, the answer came within minutes of my exploration of South San Francisco with the camera.

I was photographing a fabulous neon blue hotel sign downtown when a middle-aged man came storming out the front door calling to me, "What are you doing? What are you doing!"

I lowered the camera and turned to him, "I'm taking pictures of that sign."

"Why are you doing that?" he asked with way too much intensity.

"Because I like the way it looks," I responded. "I'm just having fun. Look," I said holding the diminutive Canon G5X up to his face. "Just having fun."

"Well, OK," he said begrudgingly and went back inside.

We have come to the point where we can't take a picture of a hotel sign on a public street without an inquiry as to our intentions. And one of the reasonable lines of defenses against this unreasonable behavior is a small camera that looks like something only a tourist would carry.

That's why I thought the G5X was a good choice for the day. And as it turns out, I was right.

After a week of steady shooting with the Canon, there are five features that I think are worth discussing for those interested in a compact camera for travel, street photography, and family outings. Let's dig deeper.

S. SF Ex Phone Booth

5 Noteworthy Features on the Canon G5X Mark II

  • Electronic 2,360,000 dot Viewfinder and Tilting 3" 1,040,000 dot LCD - The popup viewfinder works well for both left and right eye photographers. Once popped up, the eyepiece pulls outward providing plenty of viewing distance. This adjustable diopter is a great touch, and the image is outstanding. The tilting LCD is wonderful for street photography when you want to get low or high angles. This tandem really makes this a versatile, easy to use camera.
  • Front Control Ring for More Precise Zooming - The adjustable ring around the lens can be programmed as a step zoom with click stops for 24mm, 28mm, 35mm, 50mm, 85mm, 100mm, and 120mm. Since I'm already familiar with those focal lengths, I found this far more useful than just randomly pushing a rocker switch in one direction or the other to adjust the zoom.
  • Easy to Use Exposure Compensation Ring - If you enable Exposure Simulation, you can take full advantage of the easy to adjust exposure compensation ring that provides real time visual feedback as your rotate it with your thumb.
  • Relatively Fast f/1.8 - 2.8 Zoom lens - Not only is the zoom range good - 24mm to 120mm - so is the maximum aperture ranging from f/1.8 - 2.8. This makes it easier to capture images in a variety of lighting environments without having to jack up the ISO.
  • Versatile Charging Options - In-camera battery charging, from a power bank, outlet, or computer, is possible via the USB port. And unlike many other cameras that allow for USB charging, Canon also includes the standalone charger in the box. So you have both options available.

Stanford Mall Shopping

I do have a few nits as well. The battery indicator is less than accurate. It may show half charge available one minute, then suddenly shut down the next. The back panel controls are too easy to accidentally change during the shooting process. And I would love to have a custom function button or two.

But overall, I really like the Canon G5X Mark II ($899). The imaging pipeline produces excellent shots, there's a bounty of useful features, and the body is truly compact. It's a winner!

The B&H Deal of the Week

Panasonic Lumix G 25mm f/1.7 ASPH. Lens with UV Filter for Micro Four Thirds

The Panasonic Lumix G 25mm f/1.7 lens is on sale for $147.99 - that's $100 off.

One UHR (Ultra-High Refractive Index) element pairs with two aspherical elements to reduce spherical aberrations and distortions for consistent edge-to-edge sharpness and illumination. A Nano Surface Coating has been applied, too, and helps to reduce flare and ghosting for increased contrast and color fidelity. The optical construction also helps to realize a compact overall form factor, measuring just 2"-long and weighing 4.4 oz. Benefitting both stills and video capture, this lens also incorporates a stepping motor for smooth, quiet autofocus performance that is compatible with Lumix cameras' high-speed contrast-detection focusing systems.

Great for both Panasonic and Olympus MFT cameras, especially at this price!

74 Samsung officially unveils 108MP ISOCELL Bright HMX mobile camera sensor

You can read the entire article here. Here's the scoop:

The ISOCELL Bright HMX is the first mobile sensor to feature a 1/1.33" size, according to Samsung, which says its Tetracell tech enables the HMX to 'imitate big-pixel sensors' for better quality 27MP images.

The 1/1.33" format equates to around 9.6 x 7.2mm, which is around 40% smaller than a 1"-type sensor, but nearly 3 times larger than the 1/2.5"-type chips in the many of smartphones. The Tetracell design, much like Sony's 'Quad Bayer' technology, places four pixels under each color of its color filter, making it easy to combine pixels to give better performance at 1/4 resolution, but also means additional processing needs to be done to attempt to replicate what a standard Bayer sensor would capture, if it had 108 megapixels.

New Course Offering: Podcast Skills

A course on podcasting has been the number one request for new workshop topics. And after some time thinking about the best way to make this happen, I've come up with a one day skills course that you can attend from home, or wherever you have an Internet connection.

This event will cover the following topics:

  • Recording Hardware
  • Editing Software
  • Concept and Creation
  • Essential Storytelling Techniques
  • Show Notes
  • Syndication and RSS Feeds
  • Getting Your Show on Apple Podcasts, Google Play Music, Stitcher, and More
  • Adding Music to Your Show (and Where to Get It)
  • Editing Workflow
  • Promoting Your Podcast
  • The Ins and Outs of Advertising and Sponsorships

The topics will be divided into modules and presented live, and they will be recorded as movies as well. Each participant will receive the catalog of HD movies from the day as part of their tuition.

The course will include insider tips, best practice techniques, and multiple Q&A sessions. Each participant is also entitled to one follow up one-on-one session after the workshop to address questions unique to his or her goals.

The live course, set of recorded videos, and the follow up one-on-one session costs only $249. Inner Circle Members get a 10 percent discount on tuition.

The first two course dates are scheduled for October 12 and November 9, 2019. Participation is limited to 10 people per course, first come, first served. Registration is open now at www.thenimblephotographer.com. Click on the 2019 Workshops tab.

Updates and Such

Inner Circle Members: A big thanks to those who support our podcast and our efforts!

B&H and Amazon tiles on www.thedigitalstory. If you click on them first, you're helping to support this podcast. And speaking of supporting this show, and big thanks to our Patreon Inner Circle members:

And finally, be sure to visit our friends at Red River Paper for all of your inkjet supply needs.

See you next week!

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 - Keep up with the world of inkjet printing, and win free paper, by liking Red River Paper on Facebook.

Portfoliobox - Your PortfolioBox site is the best way to show off your best images.

The Nimbleosity Report

Do you want to keep up with the best content from The Digital Story and The Nimble Photographer? Sign up for The Nimbleosity Report, and receive highlights twice-a-month in a single page newsletter. Be a part of our community!

Want to Comment on this Post?

You can share your thoughts at the TDS Facebook page, where I'll post this story for discussion.

Sometimes you can stand there in the city, on a bright, contrasty day, and not see a single thing to photograph. That's when you need to reach into your bag of tricks. And one of those techniques is working with frames.

Burlingame Train Station Burlingame Train Station - Canon G5X Mark II - Photo by Derrick Story.

Working with structures to create frames takes that contrasty light and actually makes it interesting. You can arrange those alternating bold tones into compelling patterns that can delight the viewer's eye if they take a moment to explore your composition.

Take your time to compose the image so that you're managing all of the elements artistically. Look for repetition of theme, darks and lights, and of course, proper placement of people.

These compositions are also fun to play with in post production, where you can further enhance the texture and lighting. Don't be afraid to push the envelope a bit. What started out as a terrible photo op can result in a compelling image.

So when the light gets hot, change gears, and go with it. You might be delighted by the results.

You can share your thoughts at the TDS Facebook page, where I'll post this story for discussion.

This is The Digital Story Podcast #699, August 6, 2019. Today's theme is "How to Defeat Routine." I'm Derrick Story.

Opening Monologue

My favorite definition of routine is by Merriam-Webster, which says "habitual or mechanical performance of an established procedure." As we do something over and over, our brains can take shortcuts because we're familiar with the sequence of steps, such as taking a picture. And this certainly can dampen our creativity. But today we will restore vitality to our photography in 5 easy steps.

How to Defeat Routine

Don't get me wrong. There are moments in my life when I like routine. Mornings are an example. I don't want to reinvent the first hour of my day. I want it to be as mindless as possible. Feed the cat, pour the coffee, check email - it's all I can handle before 6am.

I also like my first 30 minutes at work. Unpack my bag, once again feed the cat (a different one this time), make another cup of coffee, read the day's news, post online, have breakfast. I truly enjoy this. The joy of routine is that it's easy on the brain. I can gently work up to my day, and by 8:30am or so, be operating at full capacity.

But routine can work against us as well. It can dampen our enthusiasm for romance, stifle innovation, and dull our creativity.

As photographers, we work so hard to master the steps that lead to professional image making. We learn about exposure, color, motion, composition, depth of field, focal length and more. These tools of the trade are important. But we often make a critical mistake once we're comfortable with them. Instead of springing headfirst into the creative unknown, we rely on our ability to make an image that's simply good enough.

Unlike our morning coffee, we must resist this urge to operate on autopilot. And here are five ways to to defeat routine.

5 Ways to Defeat Routine

highway-1080.jpg

  • Get in the Car and Go Somewhere - Most of us can set aside a day for a road trip. Make it happen. Go somewhere and experience a change of scenery. It's invigorating.
  • Try a New Lens - Whether you rent or buy, it makes little difference. But a new optic is a new way to see the world. Go wide, go long, run into the darkness with a wide aperture.
  • Work with New People - During my scouting trip, I had lunch in Eureka with Richard. He's a local, but he's attending our Humboldt Redwoods Workshop. Why? "Because I want to see this scenery through new eyes, the eyes of those attending the workshop." Working with new photographers is both amazing and invigorating.
  • Design a Photo Challenge - People love the assignments that I give them on our workshops. But you can create them for yourself as well. Challenge yourself to shoot with a new technique for the day, such as HDR. Often this opens up the passages for other creative perspectives.
  • Shoot in Manual Exposure Mode - Setting the exposure mode is at the beginning of most of our photo routines. So by disrupting the first step, you change the entire sequence, thereby forcing your brain to kick in to gear again.

Routine helps us conserve our energy to get through the day. But do not let it become the day, especially when we're making pictures. Fight back and surprise yourself with something fresh and new.

New Course Offering: Podcast Skills

A course on podcasting has been the number one request for new workshop topics. And after some time thinking about the best way to make this happen, I've come up with a one day skills course that you can attend from home, or wherever you have an Internet connection.

This event will cover the following topics:

  • Recording Hardware
  • Editing Software
  • Concept and Creation
  • Essential Storytelling Techniques
  • Show Notes
  • Syndication and RSS Feeds
  • Getting Your Show on Apple Podcasts, Google Play Music, Stitcher, and More
  • Adding Music to Your Show (and Where to Get It)
  • Editing Workflow
  • Promoting Your Podcast
  • The Ins and Outs of Advertising and Sponsorships

The topics will be divided into modules and presented live, and they will be recorded as movies as well. Each participant will receive the catalog of HD movies from the day as part of their tuition.

The course will include insider tips, best practice techniques, and multiple Q&A sessions. Each participant is also entitled to one follow up one-on-one session after the workshop to address questions unique to his or her goals.

The live course, set of recorded videos, and the follow up one-on-one session costs only $249. Inner Circle Members get a 10 percent discount on tuition.

The first two course dates are scheduled for October 12 and November 9, 2019. Participation is limited to 10 people per course, first come, first served. Registration is open now at www.thenimblephotographer.com. Click on the 2019 Workshops tab.

New Nimble Interview: Chuck Leavell, Keyboardist for the Rolling Stones

An interview with musician Chuck Leavell, whose journey began with Allman Brothers Band, and who is currently touring with the Rolling Stones on their No Filter tour. In this conversation, Chuck talks about the Stones, Eric Clapton's unplugged album, his work as a writer, and his definition of success.

The entire conversation is terrific. I think you will enjoy what Chuck has to say. To ensure that you don't miss any of the podcasts, I recommend that you subscribe to The Nimble Photographer Podcast on Apple Podcast, Stitcher, Google Play, or wherever you tune in.

Sony Cyber-shot RX100 VII: What you need to know

You can read the entire article here. Here's the scoop:

The Sony Cyber-shot RX100 VII is, as the name suggests, the seventh completely new model in the company's pocketable large sensor zoom compact series. Like 2018's Mark VI, the VII is a 1" sensor pocket superzoom, with a lens that stretches from a wide-angle of 24mm equiv up to the telephoto realms of 200mm equiv at the long end.

Like its predecessor, it features a stacked CMOS sensor with DRAM storage built into the chip itself, allowing it to buffer the data it so quickly reads out from its sensor. But the main thing the latest camera brings is updated autofocus capability and usability, which could prove to be bigger steps forward than it might sound.

The Sony Cyber-shot RX100 VII is available for preorder for $1,198 and should ship by the end of the month.

Updates and Such

Inner Circle Members: A big thanks to those who support our podcast and our efforts!

B&H and Amazon tiles on www.thedigitalstory. If you click on them first, you're helping to support this podcast. And speaking of supporting this show, and big thanks to our Patreon Inner Circle members:

And finally, be sure to visit our friends at Red River Paper for all of your inkjet supply needs.

See you next week!

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 - Keep up with the world of inkjet printing, and win free paper, by liking Red River Paper on Facebook.

Portfoliobox - Your PortfolioBox site is the best way to show off your best images.

The Nimbleosity Report

Do you want to keep up with the best content from The Digital Story and The Nimble Photographer? Sign up for The Nimbleosity Report, and receive highlights twice-a-month in a single page newsletter. Be a part of our community!

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You can share your thoughts at the TDS Facebook page, where I'll post this story for discussion.

I think many of us are searching for that iconic portrait when hitting the streets with our cameras - and for good reason. A compelling image of a single subject can be very powerful. But I've also discovered that group interaction brings its own intrigue to the day's collection of photos. And once you start looking for it, there seem to be endless possibilities.

Hoppy-Days-1024.jpg "Hoppy Days" - These four guys were enjoying a beer and each other's company on a weekday after work. Photo by Derrick Story.

The key to group photography is capturing more than one frame. I've noticed that subtle changes in body position have a big impact on the effectiveness of the image.

In the Hoppy Days shot, for example, the two guys in the center are interacting with each other, while the two on the outside are otherwise engaged. Of the series, this worked best compositionally. I also like the different position of the feet as you work from one side to the other. And this is one of the aspects of group photography that I really enjoy, which is the slight variation of theme, in this instance shoes, that's captured in the photos.

Since I've added group compositions to my radar, I've found that I come home with a more interesting, varied set of pictures. See what you think the next time you hit the streets with your camera.

You can share your thoughts at the TDS Facebook page, where I'll post this story for discussion.

Setting your camera on the ground and using the articulated LCD screen to compose provides two benefits for landscape photography.

Redwood Opening Ground level view of redwood tree opening. Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark II. Photo by Derrick Story.

First, it often provides a more dynamic perspective. Compare the top image, which was captured at ground level, to the image below, which was shot at normal standing height.

See Through Redwood.jpg Standing height view of redwood tree opening. Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark II. Photo by Derrick Story.

In many ways, these feel like two completely different shots. I'm not saying that the ground level image will be the best every time. But you have to admit, this is a "two for one" opportunity.

The second benefit is that setting the camera on the ground provides more stability during exposure. This is particularly helpful if the shutter speed is a big longish because you're trying to maximize depth of field by stopping down the aperture.

I watched people take a picture of this scene while I was scouting for my upcoming TDS Humboldt Redwoods workshop. Not one of them shot at ground level. So I guess a third benefit is that your stuff will look different than everyone else's.

You can share your thoughts at the TDS Facebook page, where I'll post this story for discussion.