Mac Lightroom Users: How to Stop Photo application on Mac from Opening

Author:  Christina Heinle

If you’re you’re a Mac and Lightroom user, you’ll understand the frustration of importing your photos into Lightroom and having the native Mac photo program automatically opening too.

To stop the Mac Photo program to stop automatically opening follow these simple steps.

  1. With or without Lightroom open, insert your SD or Compact card into the computer/card reader.
  2. If the message comes up about the Cloud, click Not Now.  Otherwise continue to the import screen.
  3. UNCHECK “Open Photos for this device”
  4. Quit Photo program (Ctrl Q)

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That’s it.  Next time you go to import your photos, the Mac Photo program will not open.

Christina Heinle is a trip leader for Arizona Highways Photo Workshops.

Maximize your next automobile portrait

Author: Hal Tretbar

Photographing automobiles can be as challenging as taking a pleasing person portrait or shooting a stunning landscape. Location of the shoot is very important but overall it’s still about lighting, composition and technique.

Why are you taking the photo? Is it just to save a memory of the rare Ferrari at a car show? It might be showing your buddy on the race track. Is it because you just waxed your ‘baby’?  Or will you need a series of images to illustrate a story. The result should speak for itself.

We have been in Tucson for a long time and I have been able to find some great locations for car photography. I like an area that doesn’t have distracting elements such as buildings in the background. Usually the light is best early or late in the day so keep that in mind.

The most common angle for an auto image is a three quarters front view with either a slightly high aspect or low enough to show some light under the car. But I usually take side and rear views if possible. I also take both slight telephoto and mild wide angles to see which proportion looks the best.

Several years ago I had an assignment to photograph a rare Porsche for a story in Excellence Magazine, the national magazine about Porsches.

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© Hal Tretbar

Jill Davis-Curtis from Tucson owned a unusual German adaptation of a 1982 Porsche 930 Turbo called a Porsche Evex. The magazine did an extended story about the Evex with five of my images. Here are three that were shot over a weekend with perfect overcast light. They show the importance of location. I used a Nikon D80 for all.

A.     I was looking for locations when I spotted this yellow and purple wall on a furniture store. The store gave me permission to photograph and moved several parked cars. The Art Editor had asked for an ‘artsy’ image so I lay on the ground and shot with a wide angle of 27 mm for distortion. I lined up the purple line to meet the bottom of the windshield and kept the yellow bricks perpendicular on the left edge.

I used manual focus at f 16 to ensure depth of field. ISO was 640 with color balance set on ‘cloudy weather’ to warm up the overcast. The editors like it so much that they gave it a two page spread to introduce the seven page article.

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© Hal Tretbar

B.   The next morning was still overcast. We used a strip of limited access highway for a driving session. Jill drove with the lights on at about 20 mph. I shot from the back of a Honda van with the rear door up. The camera settings were ISO 200, f. 18 and shutter priority of 1/30th second to blur the background. The lens was set on vibration reduction at 85 mm to keep the car sharp.

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© Hal Tretbar

C.  I had arranged for a location shoot at the Franklin Automobile Museum, one of Tucson’s unknown jewels. Here is the contrast of two air cooled cars- a 1931 Franklin model 153 Coupe and a 1982 Porsche Evex. I used a ladder to set the composition. The Franklin was lined up so you can see the spare tire and the trunk line meets the intersection of Jill and the roof. I had a Nikon SB 600 flash on the camera to light the wheels and Jill’s color coordinated outfit.

Here are the stories from behind the scenes of some of my favorite Porsche portraits.

Porsche4

© Hal Tretbar

My wife, Dorothy and I had recently picked up our first Porsche at the Zuffenhausen factory in 1959. We wanted a nice setting for a formal portrait of our Guards Red 356 A. We found the perfect spot by driving on this little path below a typical Bavarian Castle. I angled the car so we looking down slightly with a front view. It was shot with a Rolleiflex on 120 Agfacolor negative film and converted to black and white.

Porsche5

© Hal Tretbar

I wanted a moonlit image of my 1987 911 Carrera Targa. The best view was from the Babad-Do’ag turnout part way up the Mt. Lemmon Highway with the full moon shining over the Rincon Mountains. Nikon D80 with a 55-200 Nikkor at 55mm (85 mm full frame equivalent) on a tripod. 3 seconds at f. 6.3 with ISO 640 and flash fill. I used Photoshop to even out the light on the foreground. Note the back lighting from the moonlight.

Porsche6

© Hal Tretbar

I wanted to show that my 2008 Cayenne S with Martini Racing Stripes was not just a highway vehicle. Dorothy and I were in Gardner Canyon with great late afternoon stormy clouds. I put the Cayenne on top of a small hill to show the ‘s curve’ trail leading into the tantalizing distance. I made sure the roof was not above the skyline. Nikon D600 with 28-85 lens at 38mm. ISO 400 and 1/640th second at f 13.

I recently worked with pro automobile photographer Mike Maez. Mike takes many of the images you see in the catalogs put out by Gooding and Co. Auctions. He photographs as many as 30 cars before the 3 or 4 national auctions a year. He was in town to photograph a white Porsche 356 Pre A Speedster that has been restored by local expert Chuck Croteau. It will be auctioned at Scottsdale in January 2016. It is expected to bring between $300,000 and $400,000.

Porsche7

© Hal Tretbar

We were looking for a place where we could shoot the Speedster with a background of stormy clouds over the Catalina Mountains. We finally found it after driving around the Alvernon and River Road area for awhile. The location is a closely guarded photographers secret. Nikon D600 with 24-85 lens at 36mm. ISO 250, 1/800th second at f 14 using the spot meter on the bright car.

So the next time you want to shoot an automobile portrait put some thought into it. You will enjoy the result a whole lot more.

Hal Tretbar, volunteer for Arizona Highways Photo Workshops.
hctbar450@aol.com

Photo Wall Calendars

Author: Amy Novotny

With the new year and holidays approaching, wall calendars can be a great way to display various types of photography. They can serve as gifts to friends and family or can be a way for amateur photographers to begin selling his or her work. At times, a printed and fully frame photograph can be too expensive for a client, but a calendar provides a more inexpensive option to enjoying a photographer’s images and supporting an artist.calendars

Many websites provide tools for creating a calendar online that can then be printed through the website’s printing service. Some more well known options include shutterfly.com, snapfish.com, bayphoto.com and mpix.com. With these websites, the user creates an account and uses the website’s online software and templates to add photos to each page of the calendar. Designs can be selected for the background with some customization allowed. Prices for these calendars generally range between $10-20 per calendar depending on the size and quantity ordered. Purchase of individual calendars are on the higher end of that range but orders of 50-100 calendars can lead to the lower unit costs.

Another option for those looking to minimize calendar cost is a printing site called slategroup.com. This company provides a calendar template that can be downloaded into a photo editing software such as Adobe Photoshop. The design of the calendar is completely dependent the user’s ability to navigate and implement skills in Photoshop or another software. The price is closer to $6 per calendar of the same dimensions if 100 calendars are ordered. If the user does not own a photo editing software or is unfamiliar with how to use it, design services can be purchased through the company at a reasonable rate. Here is an example of a calendar made through this website. The customer service was excellent and readily available to help.

Many website options are available depending on the needs of the person designing the calendar, the abilities of the artist, and the purpose of the calendar.

Amy Novotny is a Volunteer Trip Leader with Arizona Highways Photo Workshops. Twitter: @amynovotnyaz; www.amysimpressions.com

Top 5 Tips to Sharper Pictures

Author: David Huffman

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As a Trip Leader for AHPW, I see our students master new ways to improve their pictures with each click.  Our classroom workshops emphasize the settings, camera features and techniques to improve your pictures and give you more control.  And our field workshops help you put all that knowledge into practice.

I’m constantly reminded that there are multiple ways to improve the sharpness of your photos.  Here are my Top 5 Tips to Sharper Pictures.

1.  Lower ISO’s produce sharper images.  Your camera sensor was designed to deliver its absolute best image quality at the “base ISO” which is probably ISO 64 or ISO 100.  Any higher ISO setting uses electronics to increase the “gain” in the signal and introduces small amounts of image degradation.  So stay low for sharper pictures.

2.  Smaller camera lens apertures produce sharper images, to a point.  As the aperture changes from wide open to a middle range (about f/8 to f/11) most lenses improve in sharpness especially in the edges and corners of the image.  You will also see that the depth of field increases, bringing more of the subject in focus both behind and in front of the primary focus plane, or point.  So experiment with smaller apertures to see which of your lenses improve in sharpness.
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3.  Higher shutter speeds improve sharpness because you will reduce the effect of hand-holding camera shake.  A general rule is to use a shutter speed no slower than 1/focal length of the lens.   For example, if you use a 50mm lens, the minimum shutter speed to hand hold is 1/50th of a second.  Of course, using a tripod is the best way to reduce camera shake.

4.  Your camera and/or lens may offer VR Vibration Reduction, also called IS Image Stabilization.  These small moving lens parts act like a gyro to steady the image.  It’s important to experiment with your own combination of lens and camera body at a variety of shutter speeds to see which shutter speeds are your minimum.   When you mount your camera to a tripod, be sure to turn off the VR so you don’t introduce unwanted vibration to the setup.

5.  Lens focus is possibly the most important contributor to sharp pictures.  Don’t assume that autofocus is always best.  Turn AF on and off and compare your images.  Experiment with different AF settings including single shot and continuous with a variety of still and moving subjects.  And practice often, because you will see your results improve due to your familiarity with your equipment.

I’ve included a few images from our recent Slot Canyons Photo Workshop.  All images were taken on tripod, and most with a 2-second shutter delay and mirror up to reduce camera movement.  These images were from a 36MP camera and have been printed up to 60 inches wide with no apparent loss of sharpness.   Full frame image sensor cameras and top-of-the-line glass will maximize the image quality, too, but only if you have already mastered the basics.
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David Huffman is a APHW Trip Leader, Instructor and Author.  Visit his images and information at:  www.HuffmanPhotoArt.com.