Coming Soon…. Before/After Videos

Coming soon… I will be presenting a FREE bi-weekly video series called Before/After (catchy, huh?). I will be sharing my desktop in a video post-processing images from start to finish using Lightroom, Photoshop, Nik Suite and Perfect Suite. You’ll get a sense of workflow and learn from watching me process the image as I describe my steps. These images will come from you guys. You can send in an image and I’ll select one to process. Subscribe to my blog using the “Recieve My Posts by Email” box to get notification on when the first Before/After video is posted!

Unlimited Space for your iPad, iPhone & More

A very common question that I get, and one that I’ve been searching a solution to, is how to increase the space on the iPad without buying a new one.  Well, I’ve finally found an answer and it is a good one….

Okay, so I own the new iPad.  I bought the 32-gig version thinking that would be plenty of space.  Was I wrong!  Between the magazine subscriptions, e-books, teaching material and photographs, not to mention videos, I’m long out of space.  I thought about selling mine and getting the larger hard drive but that’s another $300 investment.  Along comes this great discovery.  Maxell (remember that name mix-tape lovers of yore) has released the AirStash.  This amazing device is about the size of two flash drives, takes removable SD cards up to 32-gigs and connects to any device wireless with its own wi-fi connection.  I just got mine yesterday.  They cost about $115 from B&H and is well worth the money for unlimited space.  I tried it last night and I was able to stream video from it to my iPad with no issues.  You can stream to up to 3 devices at one time.  Document sharing is easy.  Picture storage a breeze.  An you can change out the SD card as you like.  Importing photos directly to the device is great for on the road backup.   It also has a USB port for charging and transferring files from your computer.  Please use this link to buy it if you are interested:   Maxell AirStash


Nik Collection by Google Update

The good news is that Google has now announced that you can purchase the full Nik Collection for only $149.   Previously, the entire suite was over twice that.  The newly dubbed “Nik Collection by Google” will now work with Photoshop, Lightroom and Aperture.   The update is free to anybody who already owns the plugins.  From what I can tell, if you already own as little as one plugin, you get the entire suite for free.

For those of you who have the Lightroom plugin, you will experience some issues when you try to open one of the plugins.   I can only account for Windows but I’m guessing the same will be on Macs.  Google has now created a new Google folder under the Programs folder.  In there, you will see a folder called Nik Collection.  This is now where your plugins reside.   Here’s how you can fix it:

Go into Preferences – External editing.  Under presets, you should see each NIK plugin listed.  If you do follow these steps for each Nik Plugin:

  1. Click on the preset you want to change (do this for each one)
  2. Click Choose and navigate to the Program Files/Google/Nik Collection/(preset name)
  3. For 64-bit Windows, go to the 64-bit folder within each plugin (for some, there are only 32-bit versions so use those) and click on the application file (with orange and blue Nik logo next to it) and click OPEN
  4. For 32-bit Windows, click on the Application file (simply named the plugin with a orange and blue Nik log next to it) and click OPEN
  5. You will now see the name of the plugin with (edited) showing
  6. Reopen the dropdown and click UPDATE PRESET

This will redirect your existing external edits to the new locations.

If you don’t have each of your plugins showing in the preferences tab under the Additional External Editor dropdown, go through these steps to add them.  This will allow you to right click an image and edit in your plugins easily.

  1. Go to Choose under the preset drop down
  2. Follow steps 2-4 above
  4. Name it NIK (Preset Name)
  5. If you use NIK in front of it, it will keep all the Nik plugins together because the right click list will be alphabetical.

Hope this helps.  Let me know if you have any questions.

Lightroom Preferences

Not trying is the same as losing…

DP Magazine is having a Black & White photo contest. I was very excited because I just took an image that I’m quite proud of in Vancouver. Trembling with delectation, I spun my browser towards the contest site when I was greeted with a $25.00 entry fee. Now, I think to myself, this is just a fund raiser for the magazine. I already subscribe so why should I donate $25 to the magazine. My wife said to just do it and see what happens. I did nothing. Then over dinner with some friends, both of whom are photographers, we discussed the contest. Gretchen, a wise and wonderful friend, said “If you don’t enter, you’ve already lost.” Wow, was I dining with Yoda? If I don’t enter, I’ve already lost… therefore, to be a winner, I had to bite the proverbial bullet and submit my photos. Win or lose, I still win, right? Well, if I win, I win. If I lose, I still lose but if I never tried in the first place, I’d never know and for sure would lose. So, dear reader, enter I did. Now you get out there and do it. Show your work. Enter contests, Print your images and show them around. Because if they languor on hour hard drive, well, you lose.

Lightroom Tip of the Week

I just read about this one.  Quick and awesomely time-saving.  If there are things you do to EVERY image when processing your photos, there’s an easy way to change the DEVELOP defaults.  There are a few things I always do, such as lens correction, a bit of clarity and sharpening.  Open a fresh RAW file and then just make the Develop adjustments you always do.  Then go to the tool bar at the top and click on Develop-Save as Default Setttings.  Now, every photo will already have these changes upon import.  You can always change them during your post-processing.  But, every slider I don’t have to touch is a bit of time savings.

Lightroom Tip of the Week

When you are working with your adjustment brush, it can be difficult to see exactly what you are doing.  There are two great ways to see what areas you are affecting by your brush.  First, hit the “O” key for OVERLAY.  This will highlight the areas of your brushing with a red overlay.  You can leave it on to brush on more or use the eraser to modify the area that you’ve brushed.   Each time you use your adjustment brush, it creates a small black dot with a white frame.  This is your control point.  Hover your cursor over each point to see the overlay for that particular adjustment.  Hope this helps!  If it does, like my blog on Facebook!

Hover over the control point or use your “O” key to see the overlay showing the area of that particular adjustment.


Took a weekend to celebrate my wife’s birthday in Vancouver, BC with our friends Chris and Gretchen.  In spite of torrential rains, crazy winds and low visibility, we managed to get some fun shots.  Unfortunately, my wife Mary ended Saturday evening by breaking her foot.  Of course, Sunday was the only day where the weather was absolutely beautiful.  We managed to get in some shooting so all was not lost.  I’m presenting a few of my here.