It is truly a blessing and a wonderful feeling to wake up each day doing the things you truly love to do. It is also amazing that those things create for you the lifestyle of your choosing. For me it is travel photography.
Early in life I discovered my love for art. Sketching in pencil, pen, ink, and charcoal. Later in life I was introduced to analog photograph. I became obsessed. But, because of the cost of film and printing, I had to abandon this love.
Now that I am retired I have returned to my passion. I am fascinated by this new era of digital imagery. Thus, the creation of Digital Age Professionals.
We first, had to consider who our potential customers were going to be. Secondly, we had to identify the problems DAP could solve for these customers. After, this we had to establish a location for our potential customers to visit.
Working from the digital format, our first step involved building our web site. Our website is our digital home (real estate). We have made our home as delightful as possible.
As with any home we expect guest. Guest come in two distinct forms, invited, and uninvited. I don’t know about you but certain close friends are allowed to drop by anytime. Of course, the option of admittance is entirely at my discretion 🙂
Then there are those uninvited guest. That you really have to consider if they are worthy for admittance. However, with our business home we want everybody interested in our product or services to stop by at any and all times!
Marketing, is where my problems began! I quickly realized that even though I had a web site, no one was stopping by. I became very lonely. In this instance lonely equates too low income. I had to quickly learn to market my product to those who are interested in my problem solving capabilities.
Thanks to Six Figure Mentors and AWeber I have now developed superior marketing skills and capabilities. Not only for me, but to other business owners who have marketing problems.
Marketing is the most important part of our business development. Without customers there is no business.
Choosing A Niche
Even though my problems began with marketing, choosing my niche quickly became my largest problem. I am writing this post for all new marketeers who are wrestling with this very same problem.
Affiliate marketing got me started, then I soon realized that I had to develop marketing plans that were concentrated on a particular speciality according to my personal desire. This is where the rubber meets the road.
I spent months trying to get this right. I now understand that many marketeers struggle with this problem. Thankfully my love for photography led me to my perfect niche.
By the way, what I have learned from all of this, is that finding the proper niche is an evolutionary process. Don’t get hung up, let your heart lead you to the lifestyle you desire.
Most digital marketing journeys begin with many unanswered questions, mine was no different. I had to first wrap my head around what digital marketing is, how it works, and of course the profit potential.
Recent retirement, quickly reveled the need for additional income. Not wishing to continue to conform and comply with the natural flow, I had no desire to work for anyone. The natural question became apparent; What can I do?
Spiritual awareness revealed to me that being the unique individual that we all are, we were born to create. We are to use our unique gifts, talents, and ideals to provide for the collectiveness of the universe.
Further contemplation led me to my love for photography and art. After years of running an inherited family business and working for others within the workforce, I now finally have the opportunity to pursue my passion for photography.
With the question of what to do finally answered, how to make this a reality became my focus. How could I create a digital photography business? The how began with an intense investigation of the overall digital photography industry.
That investigation very quickly exposed, and initiated a huge need for support, direction and instruction. I lacked the technology as well as the knowledge.
Understanding that the driving force for any business is customers. All business must address customer needs and problems. Bottom line customer acquisition is the key. I had to find potential customers, to present my artistic creations.
Start Up Problems
As a budding entrepreneur you must address a unique set of problems relevant to your particular niche. Ironically, you must solve your start up problems in order to create an entity to address your customer needs.
There are many obstacles that must be addressed when starting any business. The main ones being:
Start Up Capital
The good news is; digital start ups are a little less daunting than traditional brick and mortar companies. And, a lot less expensive!
As I searched for the things needed to get up and going, I was bombarded with countless get rich sachems. Stay Clear! ….. Investigate Thoroughly!
“The strength of the effort determines the outcome”
After countless hours I found a company named The Six Figure Mentors. My affiliation with SFM is the cornerstone of my company. Uniquely, this company addressed not one but all of my start up concerns, issues, and problems.
Via this affiliation I was led to AWeber email marketing company which augmented my customer acquisition efforts initiated by SFM. Although a digital marketing plan can be created without the concept of email marketing, I found it in my best interest to add this concept to my marketing efforts. Email marketing has become the foundation to my marketing strategy.
The technical platforms, training/coaching, learning modules, mentorship, and support from both companies are second to none. This partnership is the solid foundation for my ever expanding digital world.
In addition, marketing their products provides the economic base needed to grow your business regardless to your particular product/service or niche. Their pre developed sales funnel gave me the beginning cash flow necessary to build on.
Do yourself a favor and check them out. Do your own investigation. Simply follow the links and banners on this page.
Please be aware and understand who you are. You must understand the Divine Creation you are. You must understand that you were created by the Divine(God) to create for the universe.
“Simply Become Who You Are”
Throughout my life experiences it seemed the happiness was only an illusion. It was not until I realized the true nature of my being that I could experience the state happiness I now experience.
So create that which you are intended to create. Give of your Gifts and Talents! “DO What You DO”
We all get frustrated in our work sometimes. Often, that dissatisfaction stems from a lack of clarity in our purpose and our actions. But what if you could learn how to focus on the right actions, for the right reasons, and in the right order? What if you could start moving forward in your business with a clearer, more defined objective?
Debbie Peterson is a certified trainer and master practitioner in neurolinguistic programming through the Association of Integrative Psychology. She’s also a nationally recognized speaker and the author of “Clarity: How Smart Professionals Create Career Success on Their Terms.” In her book, coaching, and speaking engagements Peterson asserts that even the most confused entrepreneurs can achieve clarity by taking a few basic steps in their approach to work. It starts by focusing on five key elements:
Move away from thoughts like Why is this happening to me? and think about what you want to do to improve your situation.
1. Mindset. Focus on the things you want rather than the things you don’t want. It takes time to change your mindset, but it’s possible with consistent daily effort. The process begins with how you start your day. When you wake up in the morning, do you focus on everything that could go wrong, or do you focus on opportunities? Move away from thoughts like Why is this happening to me? and think about what you want to do to improve your situation. This is an empowering process of taking control of your thoughts and your future.
2. Passion. What do you want and why? Do you have clarity in the direction of your business? What is the overall goal for your business? Knowing the answers to these questions is important because it helps you tell your mind what you want to find.
3. Planning. Get your plans out of your head and onto paper. Write it down; sketch is out. Set SMART goals (specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, time-based) and plan out ways you will gain better clarity in your work.
4. People. Who can help you reach your goals? You need a support network, people who understand you and raise you up. Fill your inner circle with people who can help you get what you want. If you feel like you need to figure it out all by yourself, you’ll get stuck. Remember the proverb: If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.
5. Performance. What gets in the way of your success—fear of failure, time management, other people? Think about whether you have control or influence over those things. This is important because success comes by choice, not by chance. Are you putting your time and energy into what you want or into the obstacles that are blocking your progress? You get to choose, so choose wisely.
PRIORITIZE TO THRIVE
Once you’ve organized your process around the five keys to clarity, Peterson recommends getting specific about the work you’re doing and the order in which you’re doing it. She suggests making a career bucket list. Write down all the things you want to do in your business, then divvy them into A, B, and C buckets:
A is critical.
B is important.
C is interesting but can wait.
“The key here is to divide them equally, so you’re forced to prioritize rather than dumping everything into the critical bucket,” says Peterson. Within each bucket, prioritize again. List each task in order of importance so you have A1, A2, A3, etc. When you’re done, you’ll have an ordered list of tasks you can tackle one after another rather than drowning in endless, cluttered lists.
You can use the bucket list exercise across many areas in your business, from to-do lists to long-term strategic plans. Peterson goes through this process weekly for her regular to-do list and at longer intervals (every few months) for long-term planning.
THE POWER OF THREE
When you run through the bucket list exercise, you’ll have an orderly list organized by importance. Next, think about the three things you can do every day to help you achieve your A1 goal. Then move on to the A2 goal and the three things you can do to accomplish that. “Every single day you are focusing on what’s most important for your business, and you’re making an agreement with yourself to move toward that goal,” says Peterson. This process helps alleviate the all-or-nothing thinking that overwhelms people. Instead of looking at everything you must do and getting overwhelmed, divide your workload into prioritized lists and give yourself the ability to tackle them one at a time.
8 STEPS TO FOCUS YOUR BRAIN
1. Recognize your brain’s limits. Prevent overload by eliminating as many distractions as you can.
2. Stop trying to multitask. You can’t do more than one thing at a time. It takes time for your brain to switch between two things.
3. Write a to-do list. Relieve your mental load by putting tasks and worries on paper instead of letting yourself ruminate.
4. Identify motivators. When you’re avoiding a task, think about the benefits of getting it done to stop procrastinating.
5. Zone out with exercise. Physical activity can increase dopamine, which drives your brain, but let your mind wander to recharge your concentration.
6. Cut the clutter. A messy environment commands your brain’s attention, making it more challenging to focus.
7. Seek some quiet. Research shows that auditory distractions can be disruptive to a brain that’s trying to focus.
8. Tip up a coffee, tea, or caffeinated soda. There’s a reason caffeine is the most widely consumed drug in the world. It works.
Clarity comes from within. Unfortunately, a lot of us look elsewhere when assessing success, and this can confuse the process. To reach a state of clarity in your work, figure out what works for you, and determine your own model of success instead of measuring yourself by what others find important. Peterson recommends taking three steps to establish your own measuring stick:
1. Understand your core business values. What does your business stand for? Determine your core values, then build an experience around what you want to create. Ask yourself how you want to feel throughout the day and what experiences you want to have within your business. Think about times when you felt motivated, when there was a natural flow to your work. That was an experience. Identify those times and work to build more of them into your work.
2. Run your own race. We all get caught up comparing ourselves to everything else we see. But what does success mean to you? Pause to truly consider this question. Then write down the answer and make it one of your goals. Otherwise, you’ll just be chasing others’ (often unattainable) visions of success.
3. Partner with the right people. Your ideal partners will fall into two camps: the people who surround you and the people who support you. The people who surround you are the folks who make up your inner circle. However, not everyone who is with us is for us. Sometimes you need to evaluate your inner circle and make sure you’re surrounded by people who believe in you. The people who support you are individuals who are trying to create something similar to what you’re trying to create. Tap into the experience and motivation of others who are on the same path. When like-minded people come together and focus on each one in turn, action is sparked. You can tap into the momentum of the group and hold each other accountable.
CONTINUING THE JOURNEY
Clarity is a journey, not a destination. This is a rinse-and-repeat system designed to help people continue down the path toward clarity while reaching important milestones along the way. Every time there’s a challenge or a new step in your business, Peterson recommends going back to the five keys to clarity:
Consider your mindset.
Figure out what you really want (your passion).
Make a plan.
Find the people who can help you.
Focus on your performance.
Going back to this process, again and again, helps provide context; it defines who you are as a businessperson and what you want to achieve. When you do that, the markers start lining up, and the path forward becomes clear. You start making your own answers to questions that previously befuddled you.
“Having clarity helps you rebound and reach your potential,” says Peterson. “And you have far more potential than you realize.”
Before I figured out how to change, every day of my life felt like I was losing bits and pieces of myself.
I had all these dreams, but I kept procrastinating.
I felt my future slipping through my fingers. And still, I couldn’t bring myself to do a damn thing about it — couldn’t save my own freaking life.
I felt pathetic.
But, eventually, I stopped. Just like that.
Step 1 — Decide to Change Your Life
Great advice, Ayo.
I’m sorry, but it’s the answer. It’s that simple.
I decided I was done being a loser, and then with a seemingly infinite number of baby steps, I’ve made it to the point where I am today.
You see people in the gym every single year who make it past the New Year’s resolution threshold and create a life-long habit.
Why? Because they decided to.
The distinction between wanting to do something and deciding to do it is so subtle, but it makes a world of difference.
How can you bring yourself to decide? Some of my favorite techniques are:
Future extrapolation — I always think about what my life will be like years from now if I don’t decide to do that thing I know I need to do. What will your future look like if you don’t decide to make that move you know, deep down, you need to make? Use that negativity to your advantage.
Get pissed — Inspiration is light and fluffy, but negativity cuts deep. So when I’m on the fence, feel scared, and find myself hesitating, I beat myself up until I do it. I don’t automatically make the tough decisions I need to make right away, just because I’m a self-help writer. Like I said, it’s hard to bring yourself to do the things you need to do. Sometimes, it takes a ton of repetition.
Positive Visualization — Positive visualization can and does work, but I put it last because you can easily fall into the trap of having a never-ending daydream about the person you can become. Be careful with this one, but yes, do take time to actively and vividly picture what a better life would look like. This only works when combined with the work, though.
Step 2 — Do the Work
Wow, what an amazing pep talk here Ayo! Do the work! Such sage advice!
As cliche as it sounds…one step at a time my friend.
What are you trying to do with your life?
What do you want to change?
Ok, first you decide. Then, you do the teeniest tiniest steps consecutively until you get momentum. That’s it. This little mini-empire I have started with writing one blog post.
If you want to get in shape, you have to go to the gym for the first time.
If you want to be a writer, you have to write one thing — could be 10 minutes worth of writing, but you have to do it.
If you want to start a business, you have to do whatever the teeniest tiniest step is…maybe googling “How to Start an Online Business” is step one. Then maybe you find a list of businesses you could start.
Then you find a guide on how to start that specific type of business. Maybe the guide has 17 steps to it. Do step 1 on day 1[….] step 17 on day 17. Break it down into the smallest chunks you need.
“How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time.”
You kill procrastination by creating a system. Your system has rituals and practices you force yourself to do at first, but become second nature over time.
Reverse engineer your goals to what you need to do now. Create an environment that helps you get to work as soon as possible.
Put your gym clothes in the car so you don’t have to stop home to change after work. Leave your phone in another room while you work on your blog posts. Batch tasks. Throw your Xbox in the trash. Use tiny checklists and cross them off.
When you feel like hesitating, take a deep breath, and count down from five. Once you reach one, you have to start the task. I used to do this in the mornings when I needed to wake up early to write.
Eventually your systems create momentum and all of a sudden your entire life has changed.
A COLLECTION OF OUR QUOTES OF THE WEEK FROM THE PAST YEAR
1. “Work until you no longer have to introduce yourself” – Unknown
2. “When I was 5 years old, my mother always told me that happiness was the key to life. When I went to school, they asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up. I wrote down ‘happy’. They told me I didn’t understand the assignment, and I told them they didn’t understand life.” –John Lennon
3. “Either write something worth reading or do something worth writing.” –Benjamin Franklin
4. “Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—I took the one less traveled by, And that has made all the difference.” –Robert Frost
5. “Build your own dreams, or someone else will hire you to build theirs.” –Farrah Gray
6. “Here’s to the crazy ones. The misfits. The rebels. The troublemakers. The round pegs in the square holes. The ones who see things differently. They’re not fond of rules. And they have no respect for the status quo. You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify or vilify them. About the only thing you can’t do is ignore them. Because they change things. They push the human race forward. And while some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius. Because the people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world, are the ones who do.” – Steve Jobs
7. “My mission in life is not merely to survive, but to thrive; and to do so with some passion, some compassion, some humor, and some style.” – Maya Angelou
8. “Winning isn’t everything, but wanting to win is.” –Vince Lombardi
9. “Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle. As with all matters of the heart, you’ll know when you find it.” – Steve Jobs
10. “Strive not to be a success, but rather to be of value.” –Albert Einstein
11. “Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life.” –Steve Jobs
12. If you’re offered a seat on a rocket ship, don’t ask what seat! Just get on. –Sheryl Sandberg
13. “I’ve missed more than 9000 shots in my career. I’ve lost almost 300 games. 26 times I’ve been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed. I’ve failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed.” –Michael Jordan
14. “Start where you are. Use what you have. Do what you can.” –Arthur Ashe
15. “Certain things catch your eye, but pursue only those that capture the heart.” – Ancient Indian Proverb
16. “The only person you are destined to become is the person you decide to be.” –Ralph Waldo Emerson
17. “The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is now.” –Chinese Proverb
18. “The best revenge is massive success.” –Frank Sinatra
19. “Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away.” –Maya Angelou
20. “There is only one way to avoid criticism: do nothing, say nothing, and be nothing.” –Aristotle
21. “Everything you’ve ever wanted is on the other side of fear.” –George Addair
22. “How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world.” –Anne Frank
23. “The person who says it cannot be done should not interrupt the person who is doing it.” –Chinese Proverb
24. Education costs money. But then so does ignorance. –Sir Claus Moser
25. “I have learned over the years that when one’s mind is made up, this diminishes fear.” –Rosa Parks
26. “Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.” –Martin Luther King Jr.
27. “The question isn’t who is going to let me; it’s who is going to stop me.” –Ayn Rand
28. “No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.” – Eleanor Roosevelt
29. “When everything seems to be going against you, remember that the airplane takes off against the wind, not with it.” –Henry Ford
30. “Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it is time to pause and reflect.” – Mark Twain
31. “Great minds discuss ideas; average minds discuss events; small minds discuss people.” – Eleanor Roosevelt
32. “Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever.” – Mahatma Gandhi
33. “Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do.” – Mark Twain
34. “It is our choices, that show what we truly are, far more than our abilities.” – J. K Rowling
35. “Take up one idea. Make that one idea your life – think of it, dream of it, live on that idea. Let the brain, muscles, nerves, every part of your body, be full of that idea, and just leave every other idea alone. This is the way to success.” – Swami Vivekananda
36. “If you don’t design your own life plan, chances are you’ll fall into someone else’s plan. And guess what they have planned for you? Not much.” – Jim Rohn
37. “You can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future. You have to trust in something – your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever. This approach has never let me down, and it has made all the difference in my life.” – Steve Jobs
38. “The most common way people give up their power is by thinking they don’t have any.” —Alice Walker
39. “If you hear a voice within you say “you cannot paint,” then by all means paint and that voice will be silenced.” —Vincent Van Gogh
40. “I have been impressed with the urgency of doing. Knowing is not enough; we must apply. Being willing is not enough; we must do.” —Leonardo da Vinci
41. “Limitations live only in our minds. But if we use our imaginations, our possibilities become limitless.” —Jamie Paolinetti
42. “We can’t help everyone, but everyone can help someone.” —Ronald Reagan
43. “Nothing will work unless you do.” —Maya Angelou
44. “The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step.” – Lao Tzu
45. “Tough times never last, but tough people do” – Dr. Robert Schuller
46. ““Don’t count the days, make the days count.” – Muhammad Ali
47. “Never give up on a dream just because of the time it will take to accomplish it. The time will pass anyway.” – Earl Nightingale
48. “Someday is not a day of the week.” – Denise Brennan-Nelson
49. “Obsessed is just a word the lazy use to describe the dedicated” – Russell Warren
50. “Even if you are on the right track, you’ll get run over if you just sit there.” – Will Rogers
51. “If everything seems under control, you’re just not going fast enough.” – Mario Andretti
52. “Failure is the condiment that gives success its flavor.” – Truman Capote
In the age of social media, a clear understanding of your rights as a photographer is crucial to receiving the credit you deserve. But with so much information out there, you might find yourself asking:
What laws are in place to protect photographers like me?
What do I do if someone uses my photo without permission?
How long do photographers have ownership of their images?
Copyright law in the United States prohibits the unauthorized copying of a “work of authorship.” In 1988, the following amendment was added to address visual works including photography:
“Pictorial, graphic, and sculptural works” include two-dimensional and three-dimensional works of fine, graphic, and applied art, photographs, prints and art reproductions, maps, globes, charts, diagrams, models, and technical drawings, including architectural plans. Such works shall include works of artistic craftsmanship insofar as their form but not their mechanical or utilitarian aspects are concerned; the design of a useful article, as defined in this section, shall be considered a pictorial, graphic or sculptural work only if, and only to the extent that, such design incorporates pictorial, graphic, or sculptural features that can be identified separately from, and are capable of existing independently of, the utilitarian aspects of the article.”
Phew. That’s a mouthful of legalese! So what does it mean in English? Basically, copyright law says that when you take a photograph, you become the copyright owner of the image created. This means you hold exclusive rights to:
Reproduce the photograph
Display the image in a public space
Distribute the photo
Create derivatives of the image
Seems straightforward, no? But what’s considered a “derivative?”
A “new version” of a work that is already copyrighted falls under the term of a “derivative” work. Special re-edits of movies, art reproductions, and literary translations all qualify as derivatives. A film based on a book or play is another common example.
In the realm of photography, any time someone creates a photograph that is a copy or “substantially similar” to another copyrighted work, they are potentially infringing upon the original owner’s rights.
By comparing and evaluating a derivative work to the original, a court of law can determine if any copyright laws have been violated. In other words, a photographer who went to great lengths to recreate an original work’s composition, lighting, and other creative elements would be more likely to be found guilty of copyright infringement than a photographer who simply takes pictures of subjects that already exist in other photos (i.e., monuments, nature). This means many different photographers can take photos of, say, the Golden Gate Bridge without infringing on each other’s artistic rights.
In addition to looking out for your own rights, you as a photographer need to be aware of ways you may unknowingly infringe upon another artist’s rights. The last thing you want to do is misuse another creative’s work!
Take for example Mercedes Benz’s 2018 ad campaign featuring the company’s new vehicle “barreling through Detroit’s boho Eastern Market district past commercial buildings painted with vibrant murals.” Cool concept, no doubt. But the artists who created those murals that contributed so much color and atmosphere to the campaign were never asked permission to use their work, let alone credited:
“While Mercedes sought municipal permission to make beautiful shots of its vehicles on public city streets, it did not seek the muralists’ permission to make and post images of their works on Instagram. Copyright infringement? Mercedes thought not. The muralists—James Lewis, Jeff Soto, Maxx Gramajo, and Daniel Bombardier—thought otherwise.”
It shows the importance of being aware of how others’ work appears in your photographs
It serves as an example of how your work may be misused
The exception to copyright law is when the reproduction of a photograph or visual work is deemed “fair use.” The next section digs deeper into this term.
Fair use is an exception when it comes to copyright law. Journalism, critiques, research, and teaching materials are examples of specific types of writing that allow the reproduction of copyright-protected works without the permission of the “author”.
For example, if you exhibit your photography in a gallery, an art publication generally does not need permission to reproduce your image if they’re using it as part of a critique. Or, conversely, a newspaper may publish photographs of works and use them as part of an article. Both of these are examples of copyrighted work being used under “fair use” guidelines.
When considering whether a reproduction of a work is fair use, the U.S. Copyright Act says “the factors to be considered shall include whether:
The use is of commercial nature or if it is for nonprofit education purposes
The copyrighted work is highly creative or if it is fact-based
Part of the entire original work was reproduced or just a part of it
The reproduction reduces the value of the original work or has no effect
One important thing to keep in mind is that social media marketing’s use of images very rarely falls under “fair use.” If your photographic work is being used without your permission, check out the resources from PPA below for help determining if you need to take further action.
Remember: If a company uses one of your images in their marketing—on social media or otherwise—without your approval, they are violating your rights as a creator. So, what do you do if you suspect your work of being used without your permission? PPA has resources to help you understand copyright law, and even a Copyright Infringement Tool to leave no question in your mind whether or not your rights as a creator have been violated.
In my beginning attempts to enjoy this particular niche within the scope of “urban architectural street photography”(my terminology), I quickly realized that you must keep your head on a swivel.
Keep an EYE out for perspectives that just jump out at you. They are everywhere, left, right, UP, and down. By the way; when they jump out at you, please UNDERSTAND, it came from “with-in.”
This caught MY eye. The foliage seems to envelop the buildings in the background. Not only creating a natural frame but, also adding to the feeling of depth.
I absolutely Love the color contrast in this shot. Looks like October to me, this was actually taken on Christmas Eve 2021.
I shoot around water often, and the reflections always suck me in. Be careful, they will get you too!
I have always been taught to use and follow lines. Which ones should I follow?
When I returned to the hotel, downloaded, and began to sort, I realized immediately that CONTRAST identified with my Spirit. Light, Color, and Geometrical contrast is what made this shoot unique to me.
When I continued to sort through, I realized that the sky was very flat. Actually, this is one of the first things I noticed when I began my stroll. I remember thinking, that “I will just add clouds during post-processing” Which is simple enough to do.
So I added clouds to a few shots and realized that “I” liked the contrast between the structures and a blue sky. The results speak for themselves.
I thoroughly enjoyed my stroll downtown ” H Town”. When you get to a place in life where you truly enjoy what you do; it truly brings your Being (YOU) to “Heaven On Earth”. I am truly GRATEFUL!
Every picture tells a story and I’m passionate about telling stories and sharing my travel experiences through my landscape and travel photography websites.
Quite often, people ask me about what kind of camera gear I use to capture my images. Back in the 1970s, I started out shooting with a simple Olympus film camera. I am a photographer that doesn’t rely on a lot of fancy technical gear. There’s a lot of people that think that if you don’t have the perfect camera, the latest gear, or the best accessories, then you’re not ready to be an effective travel photographer. But, it’s not the tools that make the photographer. Tools simply help you to bring your ideas to life. If it’s my iPhone that’s in my pocket when I see the perfect shot – then that’s what I shoot with.
Having had the privilege of working with Canon Canada for 14 years, I’ve had a chance to meet and work with some incredible photographers. Their stories and experiences have changed the way I look at things. I’ve also had the privilege of trying out a lot of different types of travel photography equipment. Listed below are some ideas I’d like to share.
Travel Photography Cameras
So, what makes the best camera for travel photography? This is a complicated and constantly-evolving question to answer, but it’s probably a camera that allows you to capture great-quality images and doesn’t weigh a ton. Camera manufacturers are always changing their line-up with the latest and greatest features, but the things to look for in a good travel camera is image quality, long battery life, size and weight, simple to use, and that doesn’t cost a fortune. The most important thing about a travel camera is that it doesn’t get in your way of enjoying the adventure and at the same time delivers stunning images. The best travel camera for you is going to be very dependent on your needs and situation.
Fine Art Black & White Photography
I’ve gone through a number of camera bodies throughout the years but, for now, have settled on the Canon EOS 6D full-frame DSLR camera. I have investigated and tried mirrorless cameras, but because the weight wasn’t significantly less, I’ve stuck with what works for me and gets me great photos. The Canon 6D is one of the lightest weight DSLR cameras (1.7 pounds with the battery). The camera battery gives me decent life (if I’m not using GPS). The processor delivers enhanced noise reduction and exceptional processing speed, all in a compact body. Because if it’s compact size, it fits into my hand like a glove.
Camera Lenses for Travel Photography
Whilst it would be wonderful to have a large range of lenses to take with you on trips, the reality of travel is that you can only carry so much before you feel like a weighed-down camel. It’s better to try and focus on getting a smaller number of lenses that work well in a wide variety of situations. I personally use three lenses 99% of the time. When we consider travel photography, we capture landscapes, portraits, street scenes, architecture, and so on — all of these subjects require different lenses to be properly framed.
So, let’s look at a few lenses.
The “Do It All” Camera LensThe 24-70mm lens or 24-105mm lens is enormously versatile. The 24-105mm lens is the one I use mostly because of its versatility. It gives me a wide-angle to nearly telephoto range and allows me to capture large landscapes, close-up portraits, and everything else in between without having to change lenses. It’s a good size and doesn’t weigh a lot.
My Canon EF 24–105mm F/4L is II USM camera lens is a great general-purpose lens and was a great value when I purchased it with my 6D DSLR kit. If I could only take one lens while I’m hiking or biking, this is the one. AT 24mm, it is especially valuable for landscape photography and for capturing images in tight places. The 105mm focal length on the long end is really useful for a wide range of subjects, including portraits.
The Ultra Wide Zoom LensThe 16-35mm lens or something close to it is the ultimate go-to lens for a travel photographer looking to capture landscapes, cityscapes, or even internal building spaces. Not all wide-angle lenses are the same, so you need to do a little research. You want to make sure it creates sharp, beautiful images with little to no barrel distortion or fish-eye effect. Some lenses are better at this than others.I love my Canon 16-35 F/4L IS wide-angle lens and it has been popular with many landscape photographers. It’s an extremely sharp ultra-wide-angle zoom lens, delivering prime-grade image sharpness right into full-frame corners. A stellar-performing image stabilization system makes this lens a great lens. I can use it at the top of a windy mountain and shoot incredible quality, deep depth of field imagery without the use of a tripod. I had the Canon 11-24mm F/4L fisheye lens out in the field many times, but it was heavier and necessitated me carrying a larger camera bag.
The Telephoto LensHaving a good quality telephoto lens in your travel kit is a big plus for landscape photography. Sometimes you just need that tighter close-up shot to get more detailed photos. I would recommend a 70-200mm telephoto zoom lens because of its versatility. You can get a little longer, like a 100-400mm, but it adds weight and costs a lot more. The 70-200mm f/2.8L is what I use, but it’s also the heaviest lens in my kit.
I use Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II USM telephoto lens for my travel photography. This lens gives me an impressive image quality and focuses accurately very fast. It has a 4-stop image stabilization, weather sealing, and has become one of my favorite and most-used lenses. I love the image stabilization on this lens which helps me to obtain sharp images even while I’m hand-holding the camera.
So, for travel photography, it’s better to try and focus on getting a smaller number of lenses that work well in a wide variety of situations. That way, you are more likely to take them with you and use them.
Camera Bags for Travel Photography
There are a lot of camera bags on the market today and so many options to choose from. It can get a bit confusing trying to figure out which one is the best bag for travel photography. Unfortunately, there is no one-size-fits-all solution, so you must do your research. Being a travel photographer means you have to look at not only size; but also… do you need one that’s completely waterproof, crush-proof, designed for climbing rocks as well as hiking? If you are swimming through the Zion Park Narrows – then that’s a completely different story.
The following are some questions to ask yourself:
Do I want the bag to be multi-functional so it can act as both a camera bag and a day pack?
Do I want to carry a laptop computer or tablet in the bag?
Do I need a trolley strap included so you can attach it to rolling luggage?
Camera backpacks are one of the most popular options for carrying around your gear, but you may also consider a shoulder bag. Sling bags that have one strap offer quick and easy access to a camera. Holster cases are designed to be used with a camera and a single lens if you want a lightweight option for biking. Spending money on the right bag to protect your gear is cheaper in the long run. So which bag is the best bag for you?
I think it’s best to take your gear to the store and try out a bunch of camera bags – that’s what I did. So, here’s what I use:
My Lowepro Classified 160 AW shoulder bag is great for one camera plus three lenses and goes with me everywhere. Plus, the bag is easy to store in overhead bins on a flight.
The Alta Access 28X shoulder bag is what I pull out when I have a few extra lenses to haul around. The bag effortlessly carries a professional gear kit which consists of my Canon 6D DSLR, 4-5 lenses (up to 70-200mm), a flash, and a multitude of accessories. It also is no problem to store in overhead bins on a flight.
I also use a Lowepro holster bag when I’m biking. It provides good protection in a small package for my camera and attached lens.
Other Useful Travel Photography Accessories
I highly recommend carrying a lightweight carbon fiber photography tripod. I love my Sirui T-025SK carbon fiber travel tripod. It’s super lightweight and folds up into a 12-inch length. It’s maybe not the sturdiest of tripods, but it’s so much easier to carry around when hiking and biking.
I also carry a circular polarizer filter which helps to reduce reflections and glare by filtering out light that has become polarized due to reflection from a non-metallic surface. It cuts down on certain types of light in a way that can benefit your images.
6 to 10 Stop ND filters can be really useful for landscape photography when you want to slow down your shutter speed to capture creative landscape photos.
Not Just Camera Gear
Besides camera gear, it is also important for travel photographers to dress properly to handle cold and stormy weather. When I’m out and about and the temperatures start falling, there’s nothing better than a great winter jacket. I love my Eider Men’s Lillehammer III Jacket with underarm air vents in case it gets really hot. Good, waterproof hiking boots and thick wool socks are critical. I have owned a pair of Guardo boots for about one year and love them. They’re stylish, comfy, warm, and have a super grip on slippery surfaces. I find that if you don’t want to get sick, keep your head, chest, and feet warm. This merino wool t-shirt is top quality and offers great warmth.
Travel photography isn’t just about making photographs; it’s about choosing a life of curiosity, exploration, and wonder… immersing yourself in the world around you. If you want to be an effective travel photographer, it is important to carry the right photography equipment and know how to use it. I hope you find these tips useful to get started. Do you have any questions? If so feel free to ask them in the comments below:
Having had the privilege of working with Canon Canada for 14 years, I’ve had a chance to meet & work with some incredible photographers and printing experts. Their stories and experiences have changed the way I look at things. Photography isn’t just about making photographs; it’s about choosing a life of curiosity, exploration, wonder, and immersing yourself in the world around you. Follow our adventures at – www.photographyadventures.ca and get your FREE e-book today – “5 Truly Amazing Places to Visit Before it’s too late!
Do you enjoy taking photos but find yourself buried in unprocessed images? This article is for you! I’m going to give you my top 10 photo editing tips for speeding up your workflow.
I do most of my post-processing in Adobe Lightroom. But the basic principles apply regardless of the editing software you use.
The goal is to get from import to export efficiently. Don’t lose your photographic mojo or let your favourite photography gather digital dust.
10. Fix Your Images In-Camera to Save Time
Often, you will take a photo knowing that you’ll have to fix something later in post-processing.
But if you can fix it now in-camera, you don’t have to fix it later. With a quick spin of a dial, you can change the exposure. Zoom in for a tighter crop. Straighten that horizon line. It’s better than fussing with straightening it later in post-processing. Especially if you have to adjust 100 horizon lines individually.
You can make adjustments later. But why wait until tomorrow for something that you can do today?
Save on post-processing time by slowing down in the field and looking at the scene. You’ll probably need to take fewer shots to get the one you want.
The closer the in-camera image is to your final image, the less post-processing you have to do.
9. Use Import & Export Tools
Set up your editing software to do things automatically. Lightroom’s import and export tools are a great place to start.
On import, you can add global keywords and metadata like titles and copyright information. Keywording is a pain, but you can’t find your images unless you keyword. By taking a few seconds to apply keywords on import, you will save a lot of time later.
You can even add a develop preset which applies your favourite settings to the imports. You can tweak settings later, but lay the foundation of your post-processing edits on import.
When you’ve finished working, you also have export tools. You can rename images and apply output sharpening. Lightroom makes the changes automatically. You don’t have to think about it.
8. Have a System to Find Your Images Faster
I’ve wasted a lot of time looking for images. If I only had a few, I could probably remember where I put them. But after 1,000 (or 100,000), I need a system for storing images.
Put files in a place where you can find them later. It doesn’t matter what your system is, it’s having the system that’s important. An example of this might be Photographs>Wedding>2018.07.15 – Scott & Wendy.
Speeding up your workflow isn’t just about faster post-processing. It’s about having images at your fingertips when you need them.
7. Edit Only the Best Images
Photographers who fly through post-processing aren’t spending time on each and every photo. They only work on the best of the best.
This means having an effective culling strategy. Culling means deleting photos that didn’t work and targeting ones that did.
Rank your favourites with hearts, colors, flags, or stars. I go through my images quickly to make an initial selection. Then I do it again, narrowing down my favourites. My top shots get more stars. You don’t have to use my system but have a system.
I’m only going to post-process my favourites. I’ve been burned too often. I’ve post-processed an image only to find better light or composition on the next image.
To make this process faster, use a tool like Photo Mechanic. This is a program designed specifically to speed up the culling process.
Post-processing only the best of the best will greatly speed up your workflow.
6. Eliminate Keystrokes
Photo adjustments can be highly repetitious. Use any keyboard shortcuts offered by your post-processing program.
If you are able to do with one keystroke that would normally take two, you’ve saved yourself time and energy. It might not seem like a lot but think of all those thousands of photos in your catalogue. A one-second keystroke becomes a lot when multiplied by a 1000 or 100,000.
For instance, use Lightroom’s Auto-Advance function. To activate this, place a checkmark next to Photo>Auto-Advance. When you add a flag or star during culling, Lightroom automatically advances to the next image. This saves you hundreds of keystrokes each time you cull images.
There are many Lightroom shortcuts. “X” for reject. “D” to switch to the Develop Module. “V” to convert to black and white. Here’s a complete list of Lightroom shortcuts.
5. Use Presets and Auto For Quick Adjustments
It’s quicker to tweak adjustments than apply them from scratch. Start post-processing by using auto options or presets.
The auto-icon usually looks like a magic wand. The software analyzes your image and makes changes. You can check to see what settings Lightroom recommends by clicking the auto button in the Basic panel. If you don’t like the results, you can always undo the changes.
I like a lot of the settings Lightroom suggests, but others I tweak. I tend to like a lot more contrast than Lightroom suggests.
Presets or filters apply a look to your photography with one click. You can download filters or make your own. In Lightroom, you can save favourite settings as a preset. To do this, click the “+” next to the Presets panel in the Develop module. Select Create Preset.
In Photoshop, I save a series of commands as an action.
Saving settings as a preset means that I can apply these with one click.
4. Use Batch-Editing
You may often photograph a series of photos in the same scene or with the same subject. They will have similar lighting and camera settings. There’s no need to post-process each image separately. Instead, batch edit.
Batch editing means post-processing more than one photo at a time.
There are a couple of ways you can do this in Lightroom. You can copy and paste the settings or use the Sync button.
Start by editing one photo.
To copy your settings, select the image you’ve edited and go to Edit>Copy (Ctrl or ⌘C). A dialogue box will appear asking which settings you want to copy. You can check all or individual settings. Then select an unedited image and paste the settings Edit>Paste (Ctrl or ⌘V).
To sync settings, select all similar photos starting with the photo you’ve edited. Click the Sync button in the Develop module. That’s it! Your settings will be applied to all of the photos. It doesn’t matter if you selected two or two hundred.
3. Streamline Your Editing Process
Once you start editing images, have a system. It doesn’t matter what that system looks like – just that you do the same adjustments in the same order.
Some photographers go straight down the Develop Module panel in Lightroom. They fix the Basic settings first, then move down the list. Skip over the settings that don’t apply to your photographic style.
My first change is composition. I crop the image. There’s nothing worse than removing dust spots, straightening lines, and adding a vignette – only to then crop out my hard work. After cropping, I move onto contrast, highlights, shadows, color, and details.
Decide on the settings that you care about most and make changes in the same order. If you often have to go back to readjust a setting, change the order. For instance, adding dehaze often darkens the image. This means I have to readjust exposure. The more you can automate your editing, the faster you will be.
2. Edit on the Go
I have found myself sitting on a plane, train, or bus home from a session, itching to start post-production. Put that time to work.
Set up a mobile post-processing workspace on a laptop or mobile device. This won’t necessarily replace your primary workspace, but you can get started editing. By the time you’re home, you can have your images imported into Lightroom, added keywords, and started culling.
1. Be Decisive
When I think about the things that slow down my workflow, I have to admit that most of the time it’s me.
There are a thousand ways to edit a digital image. I am at my most efficient in post-processing when I’m decisive. I waste time when I vacillate between possibilities. There’s no harm in trying a few different ways of post-processing an image. But then I need to make a choice.
It’s easier if I only have two choices in front of me. This photo or that? This white balance or that?
There is no right way of post-processing an image. It only matters that you like it.
There you go. My top ten photo editing tips to speed up your workflow. This article is more about streamlining how you deal with your images than on how to edit photos. Spending more time at the beginning of the process will stop time being wasted later on.
I use these tips when it comes to my work, and it took a while for the process to become streamlined. Find your own way and share your tips in the comments below.
Jenn Mishra is a fine art travel and landscape photographer based in the St. Louis metro area. Jenn is an active photographic educator and has been invited to speak at conferences such as Out of Chicago. Her photos have been featured in a number of solo exhibitions. Her studio is Wits End Photography. You can see more of Jenn’s photo at http://www.jennifermishra.com or visit her Instagram @jennatwitsendMore By Jenn Mishra >
Take a moment and think of what you want, and how you are going to get it. Regardless of what it is that you want, It will take MONEY to get there!
“A feast is made for laughter, and wine maketh merry: but Money answereth all things”..Ecclesiastes 10:19 (yes, check your bible, it’s there)
Money can’t buy you happiness, but if you are going to be happy you Will Need Money. Looking at people who have acquired great Wealth, I have recognized they basically have three things in common:
1. Multiple streams of income
2. Residual Income
3. Unlimited, continous, never ending income
Networking marketing (ie..Pyramid) has always gotten a bad rep. Let’s take a closer look;
# Low start-up cost
# Turn-Key (everything needed to get started built in price)
# Low monthly business expenses
# The opportunity to Franchise(without franchise cost)multiple sources of income (travel commissions, direct sales commissions, rep overrides)
# Never-ending residual income (make money once, and receive it continually)
# Worldwide market
This being said I consider myself as being a very astute Entrepreneur who utilizes the tool of NETWORK MARKETING to acquire wealth. The Network Marketing tools I use are; PlanNet Marketing (continuous never-ending residual income), and InteleTravel (travel sales commissions)
Direct Sales Commission
The PlanNet Marketing Rep who sells the InteleTravel home-based Independent Travel Agency (“ITA”) business earns a direct sales commission. When you, as a PlanNet Marketing Rep, sell the InteleTravel Independent Travel Agency business (an ITA sale) for $179.95 and $39.95 monthly, you are paid a Direct Sales Commission of $50.00. There is no limit to the number of $50.00 Direct Sales Commissions you may earn.
Build a Rep Organization and Earn Override Commission
The PlanNet Marketing Rep, in addition to selling the InteleTravel business opportunity, may also choose to build a Rep organization and earn override commissions on Reps in their organization who do the same.
PlanNet Marketing offers the Rep who chooses to build a team and Rep organization, financial freedom and flexibility in achieving that goal. As a team-building Rep, you are provided with an online, feature-rich Virtual Office, complete with all of the marketing and sale tools and support that you need to grow your business. When you enroll someone as a PlanNet Marketing Rep (initial fee $19.95 and $19.95 monthly*) and they make an ITA sale, you, as their Sponsor, are paid a 50% Match ($25.00) on their ITA sales. There is no limit to the number of 50% Match Commissions ($25.00) you may earn. And that’s just the start!
As you continue to enroll Reps, and they, in turn, do the same, your team grows and so does your earning potential. As your business grows, you become eligible for increased levels of earning. Click here for our exceptional compensation plan and explore the many benefits available to you as a PlanNet Marketing Rep.
PlanNet Marketing is committed to your success. We want you to live life the way YOU want to live it, to achieve financial security on your terms, and to improve your life and the lives of others.