To grow our photography businesses, we make images that serve specific, narrow functions. For example, our wedding photography needs to attract and satisfy a specific demographic with a certain look in order to allow us to charge a particular price and create a consistent brand. Our commercial photography needs to assist clients in generating specific feedback from their customers that are in line with business goals. Even though my photography offered me creative expression, it was being undermined by a mechanistic approach that treated photography as a utility. I realized my photography needed to participate in something.  My photography lacked a community and I needed to have an outlet where my photography could give and serve.

I thought this personal crisis was more widely shared among photographers, so I was a little surprised to find out that so few professional photographers have volunteered their time to serve their local chapter of the Boys and Girls Club. I cannot speak broadly about philanthropic photography, but my goal here is to highlight why the Boys and Girls Club is one of the best organizations for your consideration.

With over 4,100 club affiliations spread across America, the Boys and Girls Club is likely the most conveniently located nonprofit organization that you could serve. I called my county-level organization for the first time, two years ago, and was met with gratitude and opportunities to photograph almost immediately. When I said I wanted to offer service on a continuing basis, they were justifiably skeptical. Pro photographers are known to serve local nonprofits infrequently and only when they need to create an inflated tax writeoff.

By offering my photography at the county level, I was able to work with the administration team and became involved with multiple Clubs. That is a great strategy. If you volunteer exclusively at an individual Club, they will appreciate your service and your images will be put to good use, but there may not be enough opportunities to sustain your service for multiple occasions.

Most people think that the Boys and Girls Club is just afterschool care: a place where children go to hang out or do homework until for their parents finish their long hours working.

Yes, there is homework, and academic mentoring available, but you'll be pleasantly surprised to see that the Boys and Girls Club is filled with broad opportunities. This will give your photographs variety and you'll see yourself as photographing the life of the Club rather than repetitive stock moments.

In fact, many Clubs offer genuine outlets for play: like summer camp and networked computer gaming. And in our case, we've created a strong relationship the the Carolina Hurricanes hockey team, where professional athletes frequently mentor and play with our kids.

"The Club" or "teen centers" are Clubs that cater specifically to teenagers. I teach photography at my local teen center, and if teaching photography is your passion, many teen centers will welcome you with open arms.

Jay, for example, is one of my photography students. He doesn't own a camera, but with a little networking, we got him a media pass to photograph alongside professional photographers at a Duke University Football game.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b6lARirchro

The Boys and Girls Club has an internal, nationwide photography competition for it's Club members, sponsored by Sony. And this year, Jay entered and won 1st place in two categories at our local level. We're hoping he'll win again at the regional and national level.

Some teenagers like to be expressive and playful in front of the camera, so if you're interested in practicing your commercial photography techniques with teens you're mentoring, some of them will be happy to model for you. This is also valuable if you become involved in teaching photography because your teenage photography students will frequently want to photograph other teens.

Since the Boys and Girls Club is a nonprofit, they fundraise and need donations. But that means they need to schedule events for donors and create an atmosphere of celebration for successful contributions. This creates opportunities to provide event coverage photography.

Internal to the Club organization is a structure created to allow youth to overcome a classic leadership phobia at these events: public speaking.

I hope these experiences and photographs I've shared have encouraged you to find a nonprofit organization worth serving. The Boys and Girls Club, in particular, is both locally available and historically underserved by the photographic community. If you decide to serve a local nonprofit on a continuing basis, the life of the organization will unfold in front of your lens. You'll experience a satisfaction that will sustain you through the routine affairs of operating your photography business.

You can see more of Shaun’s work at ShaunKing.com, and follow him on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.

Today over on the KelbyOne blog, Julio posted a link to a free clip from our class with sports photography legend Peter Read Miller called “What Makes a Great Sports Photo”. Even though I did the class with Peter (I was just the host), I just watched this clip and in it, Peter shares a slideshow of his works, andâ¦wellâ¦ya just gotta see it â” totally worth it.

Peter’s slideshow is simply amazing, and you’ll recognize a bunch of the images because they were covers of Sports Illustrated magazine. Here’s the link to watch this clip above (you don’t have to be a KelbyOne subscriber to see it â” just scroll down a few posts and you’ll see it).

Today we’re taping our first episode of “The Lightroom Show”
In other news: RC and I are taping our first episode of our new weekly podcast called “The Lightroom Show” where we share Lightroom tips, tricks, tutorials, and techniques (all based on reader questions and suggestions over at our site LightroomKillerTips.com). The new show should go online next week and I’ll share the link then (it’ll be part of KelbyTV.com), but in the meantime, thanks to everybody who submitted questions and ideas. We’re psyched!

http://youtu.be/zHT9_I5L59Y

Yes, that’s Mia on “The Grid”
Last week on “The Grid,” we had our own Mia McCormick as our special pop-in guest on “The Grid” to talk about a cool gadget for the iPhone she picked up at ImagingUSA in Nashville, and Mia kind of stole the show. We did talk a lot about Lightroom, but also took a look at what was new at ImagingUSA and all sorts of stuff. A really fun episode (I’ve embedded it above if you want to check it out).

That’s it from here. Off to tape our first “The Lightroom Show” episode!

Best,

-Scott

P.S. Thanks to all the photographers who came to our headquarters yesterday for an in-house “test run” of my brand-new live tour, “Shoot Like a Pro: RELOADED.” Such a great crowd to present to (and the first time we got to use our new in-house theater) and thanks for all your feedback in helping me make the official first tour stop in Salt Lake City totally rock! 

 

http://youtu.be/zTutBlXvtDs

A few weeks back when we had Jared Polin (Fro Knows Photo) as our in-studio guest on “The Grid,” Jared asked if we could do an interview earlier that day (for his “RAW Talk podcast”), and he’d have his crew set up cameras in my office and we’d just go for it, and I guess I went for it with some very candid answers.

I’ve gotten a lot of great feedback on the interview and I have to say Jared did a great job by not asking the standard ol’ questions. He kind of let the interview go wherever we took it, and we took it down some streets I haven’t been down in interviews before, which I think is really cool.

Anyway, I’ve embedded the video above so you can watch it right here. My thanks to Jared for the opportunity and for coming down and being our guest on “The Grid.”

Today, I'm spending the entire day with a test-group of folks who will see the first draft of my all new "Shoot Like a Pro: Reloaded" tour. These fine, wonderful photographers will share all sorts of valuable feedback on my presentation so that when I launch the tour in Salt Lake City in April, it will be totally rockin' right out of the gate. Plus, I'm excited that I'll be teaching in our own brand new, in-house theater in front of a live audience (super psyched about that).

Hope you all have an awesome Monday!

Best,

-Scott

 

Hi Gang: Lot’s of new stuff today:

Above: Here’s the Canon EOS 5DS model.

Above: Here’s the 5Ds R model.

 

Canon Announces a Full Frame 50.6-megapixel high-resolution DSLR

There are actually two versions : the Canon EOS 5DS and the 5DS R [“with the sensor’s low-pass filter rendered neutral. By cancelling the effect of the filter, the 50.6MP sensor is enabled to deliver an even higher resolution with more intricate details.”]. These are the highest resolution DSLRs out there (well, they’re not quite out-there yet â”  B&H’s page on the cameras says “expected availability” is around June).

The prices are pretty amazingly low for that high a resolution camera: The 5DS is $3,699 and the 5Ds R is $3,899.

Here’s a list of the specs (from Canon):

> Newly designed 50.6 Megapixel full-frame CMOS helps deliver ultra-high resolution images for large-scale printing and extensive, creative cropping, while Dual DIGIC 6 Image Processors enable spectacular image quality and processing speed.

> EOS Scene Detection System features a 150,000-pixel RGB+IR Metering Sensor for excellent precision.

> 61-Point High Density Reticular AF including up to 41 cross-type AF points and EOS iTR allows for high precision autofocus.

> Advanced mirror control mechanism and new user-selectable shutter release time lag helps suppress camera vibration for reducing image shake.

> Anti-flicker helps compensate for flickering light sources and provides consistent exposure and color during continuous shooting.

> Built-in intervalometer and bulb timer helps deliver expanded creativity.

> 1.3x and 1.6x crop shooting adds superb flexibility, while still delivering high resolution images required for demanding applications.

> Intelligent Viewfinder II with approximately 100% viewfinder coverage.

> Full HD 30p movie capability and Time Lapse Movie function, which takes still photographs at set intervals and combines them into a Full HD movie file.

> High-speed continuous shooting up to 5.0 fps allows you to capture fast action.

> 3.2-inch ClearView II LCD monitor, 170° viewing angle, 1,040,000-dot VGA, reflection resistance with multi coating and high-transparency materials for bright and clear viewing.

> Customizable Quick Control Screen allows you to quickly change frequently used camera settings and functions.

> Support for USB 3.0.

I haven’t had a chance to take this baby out for a spin yet, so at this point I can’t tell you much more than the specs you see above. With those crazy-high megapixel specs normally usually only seen on Medium Format cameras, it looks like the camera will be aimed at the serious landscape photographer, commercial photographers, and portrait photographers that need to make really, really large prints. So basically, the medium format crowd, but at prices that are around $25,000 less (I know resolution alone doesn’t make a medium format camera, a medium format camera, but it’s a good place to start).

You can read the official press releases here.

Canon Announces new 11-24mm zoom lens for Full Frame bodies
OK, this one I am totally drooling over. I already contacted Canon begging to do a field test on it, and if this puppy is as sharp or sharper than my Canon 16-35mm, this will be the next lens I’m buying. I’ve been dying to go wider than 16 with a zoom without going all the way to a fisheye (I already have the 8-15mm fish), so this lens is so right up my alley. Can’t wait (here’s the link to Canon’s press-release).

In Other Friday News: My New Lightroom Tethering and Lightroom Mobile Online Class is Now Available
This new class just went live, and I take you through how to set-up to shoot tethered directly into Lightroom (including how to troubleshoot when things get wonky), and I take you through how to incorporate Lightroom Mobile into your portrait photography workflow. If you’re a KelbyOne subscriber, you can check it out right here.

If you’re not a KelbyOne subscriber, it’s time to get on board (you’ll super-dig it). Here’s the link with details on how to become a member and get access to all our huge library of online training classes on Photoshop, Lightroom and Photography.

OK, it’s after midnight, I’m hitting the sack.

Hope you guys have an awesome weekend!

Best,

-Scott

 

New Classes at KelbyOne
It’s Fashion Month at KelbyOne.com and we have a lot of great classes on Fashion Photography from instructors like Lindsay Adler, Lou Freeman, and Joel Grimes! High Fashion Photography on a Budget by Lindsay Adler is a brand NEW class that will be releasing today. In this class, Lindsay shows you how to get the same looks that you might see in magazines or designer ads, but without breaking the bank.

Also, Dan Hughes from MacPhun Software stopped by and created a class called Dynamic Black & White Images Made Easy featuring Tonality Pro. Dan shows how to start with built-in presets, layer multiple presets together, apply custom settings, and a number of tips and tricks to help you get the most out of this innovative software.

Keep an eye out on KelbyOne.com for both of these new classes today!

KelbyOne Live
Want to learn from Scott Kelby or Joel Grimes live in person? Check out these seminar tour dates to see if they’re coming to a city near you!

Shoot Like A Pro Tour with Scott Kelby
Mar 9 – Sacramento, CA

The Photographers Creative Revolution Tour with Joel Grimes
Feb 23 – Indianapolis, IN
Feb 25 – Atlanta, GA
Feb 27 – Arlington, TX
Mar 25 – Washington, DC
Mar 27 – Minneapolis, MN
Apr 17 – New York, NY
Apr 22 – San Antonio, TX
Apr 24 – Houston, TX

Leave a comment for your chance to win a free ticket to one of these events!

Last Week’s Winner
Lightroom 5 Book for Photographers
– Georgia M. Higgins

If that’s you, we’ll be in touch soon. Have a great Thursday!


On the field pre-game

Last Sunday I shot my 39th Super Bowl.  I know that sounds like a lot of Super Sundays, but it pales in comparison to photographers Mickie Palmer, Tony Tomsic, John Biever and Walter Iooss, -each of whom came into last Sunday's game having photographed all 48 of the previous Super Bowls.   (For more of their stories check out Neil Leifer's cool new film Keepers of the Streak on ESPN.)

My first Super Bowl was 9 (I'll spare you the roman numerals).  It was supposed to be played in the brand new Louisiana Superdome-the historic first indoor Super Bowl.  Unfortunately the â˜dome was not completed in time and I found myself shooting in rusty old Tulane stadium with the game-time temperature hovering in the 40's and a steady rain coming down.


New England's Ron Gronkowski makes a touchdown catch in the second quarter - Canon EOS 1DX, Canon EF 400mm f/2.8 IS Series II lens, f/2.8 @ 1/1600, ISO 2000.

Leading up to Sunday, Phoenix had a pretty rainy week. Fortunately for all of us, the photographers, the players, and the fans, the sun came out on game day. In fact the weather was so good that they opened the roof to the University of Phoenix Stadium (aka "the big toaster"). While it lacks the grandeur of AT& T Stadium in Dallas, the U of P is a pretty good place to shoot with its roomy sidelines and good light.


“The flyover" - Canon EOS 1DX, Canon EF 8-15mm f/4 lens @ 15mm, f/4 @ 1/8000, ISO 1600.

Most of my winning images have come from shooting on the sidelines, so let me take a moment to explain the setup here. Sideline space at any game is precious, but especially at the Super Bowl. There are several hundred credentialed field photographers and at least as many TV, video, and NFL Films personnel all sharing the same space on the field. Most of the crowding happened in the corners of the end zones. The end zone space was at a real premium due to the fact that there were at least 10 television cameras in permanent positions in either end zone. Crossing an end zone was a little like running an obstacle course requiring stepping up and over photographers, assistants and film runners, then back down to your knees for a few feet to duck under a camera, then up again, then down again. To avoid the gymnastics routine, I decided to shoot almost exclusively from the Patriots side of the field.


Seattle's defense gets a piece of New England running back LaGarrette Blount - Canon EOS 1DX, Canon EF  400mm f/2.8 IS Series II lens, f/2.8 @ 1/1600, ISO 2000.

Locations aside, my gear selection is just as important because there isn't a do-over opportunity to run back into your car to grab that extra lens or accessory. So what gear did I use for the game? My go-to sports action camera has been the Canon EOS 1DX since it was introduced in 2012. On Sunday I used three of them to capture the game. My backup was my new favorite lightweight action camera, the Canon 7D Mark II. With a burst speed of 10 fps and incredibly fast auto-focus, the 7D2 makes a great companion to the 1DX.


My gear packed for the game

My long lens for the game was the EF 400 f/2.8 IS Series II exclusively. I went with this lens over my beloved EF 200-400 f/4 because if you add the Canon EF 1.4x Extender to a 400mm, it will give you a 560mm f/4, while the 200-400mm built in extender will drop it to f/5.6.  The extra focal length is a big help with shooting at a crowded game like Sunday's. And although the light at the beginning of the game was sufficient to shoot f/5.6 at ISO 4000, it soon started dropping as the sky darkened.


Seattle's Marshawn Lynch runs after a catch in the fourth quarter - Canon EOS 1DX, Canon EF 400mm f/2.8 IS Series II lens, f/2.8 @ 1/1250, ISO 2000.

My exposure for most of the game was set to 1/1600 @ f/2.8 at 2000 ISO. When I shot at f/4 with my 70-200 zoom or with the extender on the 400, I cranked the ISO up to 4000. My physical set-up was the 400mm with the EOS 1DX set on a monopod, and one 1DX with a 24-70 on a short strap and the other 1DX with a 70-200 on a longer strap below it both around my neck. This is my favorite set-up for accessibility, although it does eventually take a toll on my neck.

Leading up to the Super Bowl this year, a number of my Twitter followers asked me how would I approach shooting the "biggest game of the year"? My answer: "Hopefully not any differently than I did any other game I shot this season." After my first Super Bowl I had a conversation with Dave Boss of NFL properties.  Dave was a friend and mentor, a multi-talented artistic genius who founded NFL Creative Services. I told him how disappointed I was with my photos from the game, how I thought they should be somehow better. Dave made the point that the Super Bowl is, at the end of the day, a football game. The teams will play 60 minutes, or more if you are lucky. Passes are thrown, tackles are made, touchdowns are scored, balls are fumbled and field goals are made, or missed. Players will play with intensity and brilliance and sometimes they make mistakes that will stay with them a lifetime.


New England's Tom Brady drops back to pass - Canon EOS 1DX, Canon EF 70-200mm f/4 IS lens, f/4 @ 1/1250, ISO 2000.  The low angle was achieved by shooting from ground level using the Canon Angle finder C.

When I am not shooting from the sidelines, I teach workshops around the country to aspiring sports photographers or photographers looking to build on their craft and I always tell them the same bit of advice Dave gave to me:  "As a photographer, your job is to cover the action that takes place on the field and not to be distracted by the hype, the hoopla, and the shear tsunami of bullsh*t that goes on around this game."

Sunday's game was a fantastic NFL football game. From the comfort of your home, there is a lot that you don't see of what photographers have to go through on the field. Here's what you missed:

– A two-hour bus journey to the game including mysterious waiting around and being transferred to other buses.

– A thorough security check. I get the importance of heighted security during an event like this, but it took some folks up to an hour to go through and lay their gear out on the ground to be sniffed by bomb dogs (I'm glad I left my doggie bones at home!).

– The chaos during the Katy Perry half-time show. Photographers who were trying to shoot Ms. Perry were moved from spot to spot and moved again and again until it was nearly impossible to shoot anything except the very end when she flew above the field.

– The double chaos during the last few moments of the game. In an effort to keep photographers off the field at the end of the game, the NFL places hundreds of security personnel shoulder-to-shoulder on the sidelines. Did you see at the end of the game where some photographers almost reach the line of scrimmage with 18 seconds left on the clock? Yeah those photographers probably ended up missing the most important shots of the game. After so many years, you'd think they'd figure it out.

– The worst trophy presentation (visually speaking) since they started doing them on the field (as opposed to the locker room). The presentation was aimed away from everyone except for a stand of television cameras and the background of LED advertising boards when usually it's the darkened stands with showers of confetti.


New England DB Brandon Browner tires unsuccessfully to break up a Russell Wilson pass to Seahawk WR Jermaine Kearse - Canon EOS 1DX, Canon EF 400mm f/2.8 IS Series II lens, f/2.8 @ 1/1600, ISO 2000.

The chaos, and waiting aside, being on the sidelines is definitely worth it. This past Sunday's game had the Super Bowl's usual series of difficulties and distractions, but unlike so many of these games, it was, I think, one of the most exciting Super Bowls ever. It was a great 39th for me and it left me looking forward to next year's game in San Francisco.


The rarest moment of NFL action-a happy Bill Bellichick - Canon EOS 1DX, Canon EF 400mm f/2.8 IS Series II lens, f/2.8 @ 1/1250, ISO 2000.

You can see more of Peter’s work at PeterReadMiller.com, pick up his book On Sports Photography, and follow him on Twitter and Facebook for updates on his latest shoots and workshops.

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