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    Wednesday
    Dec032014

    The Holidays are upon us. Send out those Christmas Cards, don't Facebook, Email or Text them.

    Each year many of my friends say they are going to get that family photo and make a Christmas card to send out to friends and family and well, not many actually come through with it. Instead they Facebook a card, text a message or email a file which all gets forgotten. It's time to start sending cards to are friends and family. Hey even if it's only one it's better than nothing. Have you sent your cards out this week? 

    There are so many places that a card can be made online. Costco, Sam's Club, Walgreens, RiteAid, Duane reade and CVS to name a few. Also you have your local pro labs, just google that keyword and you will find them. It can all be online and you can then go pick up or have them shipped but i would say pick up to send them out now. Hint, hint. 

    Last Dec 2013 "The Economist" posted an article on the Christmas card decline in sales. Here is small part of that article. 

    "STAFF at Regent Group, a small stationery firm in Shipley, West Yorkshire, may not have a very merry Christmas. In mid-October their employer, which produces greeting cards, announced “a significant number” of redundancies following the loss of its largest customer to administration. Half the workers at the site may lose their jobs. One of the reasons: the lack of Christmas cheer.

    "The traditional Christmas is declining," believes Dame Hilary Blume, the director of the Charities Advisory Trust, a trade group that set up Card Aid, a charitable campaign that gives a portion of revenue from card sales to charity. One of the main traditions of Christmas—sending paper cards—appears to be on the wane. That is bad news for the greeting card industry which makes 10% of its sales over the festive season. Analysts IBISWorld forecast an annual 2.5% contraction of the sector in the next five years."

    Send out a card today you will make someone very happy. It's personal and shows you took the time. I would send you all a card but I don't know your address but if you send me your address I will so send to joseph@proimagesphoto.com. 

    Here are 57 ways to Say Merry Christmas. 

     

    • USA and Canada - The “Land of the Free” and the “Land of the Maple Leaf” share their “Merry Christmas” with the rest of the English-speaking nations and communities all over the world.
    • Hawaii - Hawaii may not really be a country, but it has its own distinct Christmasgreeting, which is “Mele Kalikimaka ame Hauoli Makahiki Hou!”
    • Navajo - American Indians welcome the Christmas spirit by saying “Merry Keshmish!”
    • Mexico and the other American Spanish-speaking countries - Since these countries were colonized by Spain for a long time, their primary language is Spanish rather than English. So they greet with a warm “Feliz Navidad” instead of a “Merry Christmas.”
    • Brazil - From the grand carnivals of Brazil, people celebrate Christmas with a “Boas Festas e Feliz Ano Novo.”
    • Argentina - Argentine’s meet the 25th of December by saying “Felices Pasquas Y Felices ano Nuevo.”
    • Chile - Just like the most part of Latin America, they say “Feliz Navidad.”
    • United Kingdom - The English language originated from this country so naturally they say “Merry Christmas!”
    • Wales - The Welsh have their own Christmas greeting - “Nadolig Llawen!”
    • France - The French language makes words sound as smooth as silk. Take the case of their Christmas greeting, “Joyeux Noel!” It’s so exquisite. (How about learning counting in French? see how to count in French)
    • Italy - Italians are known for their luxury, which is typified in their majestic sounding Christmas greeting - “Buone Feste Natalizie!”
    • Spain - Spain, the majestic conqueror of old; their Christmas greeting, “Feliz Navidad,” is almost as popular as the English “Merry Christmas!”
    • Germany - Such firmness and splendor can be heard in the way Germans say “Froehliche Weihnachten und ein glueckliches Neues Jahr!”
    • Pennsylvania (German) - German mixed with local culture brings out this jolly greeting - “En frehlicher Grischtdaag un en hallich Nei Yaahr!”
    • Portugal - A simple greeting is all the Portuguese need to celebrate Christmas. It states “Boas Festas.”
    • Hungary - Hungarians meet Santa with a little “Kellemes kara’csonyi u”nnepeket e’s boldog u’j e’vet” for some pleasantries.
    • Sweden - The Swedes are a race with pride and a fine Christmas greeting, which is “God Jul and (Och) Ett Gott Nytt Ar!”
    • Iceland - “Gle[eth]ileg jol gott og fars!,” is a warm greeting from a cool country.
    • Serbia - “Hristos se rodi” is a good starter for the Christmas cheer.
    • Lithuania - Embrace the Yuletide season the Lithuanian way. “Linksmu Kaledu Macedonian: Sreken Bozhik!”
    • Latvia - Sprinkle some Latvian flavor to Christmas by saying “Prieci’gus Ziemsve’tkus un Laimi’gu Jauno Gadu!”
    • Ireland - The Irish, being a fun loving populace, knows how to celebrate Christmas the right way. They start it with a simple “Nollaig Shona Dhuit, or Nodlaig mhaith chugnat” then end things with a bang and a barrel of laughs.
    • Bulgaria - If you meet a Bulgarian, just say “Tchestita Koleda; Tchestito Rojdestvo Hristovo!” He or she will then make you feel the warmth of Christmas.
    • Norway - There is no excuse for anyone to not greet Norwegians during Christmas. They actually have two versions of the greeting - “God Jul” and “Gledelig Jul.”
    • Greece - A land of beauty and culture normally has an elegant Christmas greeting. Such is the case with Greece and its version of “Merry Christmas,” which is “Kala Christouyenna!”
    • Slovakia - In Slovakia, a Christmas celebration is not complete without saying “Vesele Vianoce. A stastlivy Novy Rok!”
    • Poland - Endear the Polish by greeting them “Wesolych Swiat Bozego Narodzenia or Boze Narodzenie!”
    • Malta - Let your tongue play a little when you say “LL Milied Lt-tajjeb!” with glee.
    • Finland - “Goal!” is prevalent in Finnish ice hockey as “Hauskaa joulua ja onnellista uutta vuotta!” is a staple for Finnish Christmas celebrations.
    • Yugoslavia - Join the Christmas merriment in Yugoslavia. Tell the people “Cestitamo Bozic!” and they will greet you “Merry Christmas!”
    • Gaelic - The Gaels sound eloquent with their Christmas greeting, which goes “Nollaig chridheil agus Bliadhna mhath ùr!”
    • Breton - Breton families toss to one another a “Nedeleg laouen na bloavezh mat” greeting every Christmas.
    • China - There may be five million people in China, but there are only a few ways to say “Merry Christmas!” - “Kung His Hsin Nien bing Chu Shen Tan (Mandarin),” and “Gun Tso Sun Tan’Gung Haw Sun (Cantonese).
    • Japan - From the Land of the Rising Sun, people say “Shinnen omedeto. Merii Kurisumasu” every Christmas.
    • Korea - Koreans celebrate Christmas with a wide grin and a “Sung Tan Chuk Ha!”
    • Thailand - Buddhism may be the predominant faith in Thailand, but they still acknowledge Christmas as a celebration. In place of “Merry Christmas!,” Thais say “Sawadee Pee Mai!”
    • Philippines - When Filipinos are not in the mood to speak in English, “Merry Christmas!” becomes a meek and warm “Maligayang Pasko!”
    • Malaysia - Malaysians are known to say “Selamat Hari Natal” to locals and tourists every Christmas.
    • Indonesia - You will know it’s Christmas in Indonesia when you start hearing people say “Selamat Hari Natal!”
    • India - Indians, despite of their strong attachment to Hinduism, acknowledge Christmas by saying “Baradin ki shubh kamnaaye!”
    • Sri Lanka - Just like India, Sri Lankans are strong Hindu believers. Though, that does not stop them from acknowledging a significant event like Christmas. Their official Christmas greeting is “Subha nath thalak Vewa. Subha Aluth Awrudhak Vewa!”
    • Sri Lanka (Tamil) - The Tamils are passionate about their beliefs, including how they revere other faiths like Christianity. They acknowledge Christmas with this greeting “Nathar Puthu Varuda Valthukkal!”
    • Russia - A powerful nation embraces Christmas with an equally powerful greeting - “Pozdrevlyayu s prazdnikom Rozhdestva is Novim Godom!”
    • Turkey - Christmas is recognized in Turkey, since Jesus is a known prophet in Islam. The nation’s official greeting is “Noeliniz Ve Yeni Yiliniz Kutlu Olsun!”
    • Ukraine - The Christmas season is celebrated with greetings of “Srozhdestvom Kristovym” or “Zrizdvom hrystovym” in Ukraine.
    • Vietnam - Through the lavish Christmas celebrations, you’ll hear people say “Chuc Mung Giang Sinh” to each other.
    • Papua New Guinea - The folks in Papua New Guinea welcome late December with a joyous “Bikpela hamamas blong dispela Krismas na Nupela yia i go long yu!”
    • Romania - Sometimes the shortest statements mean pretty significant things. In the case of Romania, their Christmas greeting comes as a short but festive “Craciun Fericit.”
    • Iraq - Iraqis don’t say “Merry Christmas,” they instead state ” Idah Saidan Wa Sanah Jadidah.”
    • Saudi Arabia - Saudi Arabia is a kingdom, which means lavish celebrations are held there. If you hear someone say “Milad Majid,” you’re probably attending a Christmas feast.
    • Samoa - Samoans are peace loving people. Naturally, their Christmas greeting, which is “La Maunia Le Kilisimasi Ma Le Tausaga Fou,” has a serene feel to it.
    • Afrikaander - The significance of Christmas has reached some of Africa’s main tribes. Afrikaanders greet the Christian holiday “Een Plesierige Kerfees!”
    • Eritrean Tribe - If a tribesman greets you “Rehus-Beal-Ledeats,” tell him “Merry Christmas to you too.”
    • Afrikaans - This African group greets other folks by saying “Geseënde Kersfees.”
    • Ethiopia - “Melkin Yelidet Beaal” is the way Ethiopians pay tribute to a flying man wearing a red coat on a sleigh.
    • Latin - Latin is a language used during the ancient times. Remarkably, people during that era were already celebrating Christmas. They greeted each other “Natale hilare et Annum Faustum!” every 25th of December.
    • Hebrew - “Mo’adim Lesimkha. Chena tova” is “Merry Christmas’” in Hebrew.

    If you want to add to this please comment.

    So start sending out those Christmas Cards! 

     

     

     

     

    Thursday
    Nov202014

    Creating a Blurry Background in Photography

    You've seen the photos, the ones that have the subject in the foreground that really stands out and your eye goes to the sharpest point of the image, this is called "shallow depth of field". This can be created easily using your camera that has aperture control.   A shallow depth of field is a subject in focus and the background blurry. You can also reverse it like the photo below of the speaker. With that said here are some tips to make it happen.

     Put distance between the subject and the background

    The size of your aperture is what changes the depth of field. So the larger the opening for each, the smaller your subject is focused. Lower aperture numbers like f/2 to 4 works the best. CHIME 2014 Conference ©proimagesphoto 2014

    Zoom Lenses

    Long lenses are great for subjective focusing and can really bring out the subject. Using lower aperture numbers are still highly suggested but you can get away up to 5.6 depending the distance from the subject. So remember zoom lenses in the range starting at 100 and up are the best. The photo below of Diana Nyad is a great example. Notice the crowd blurred. Your eyes are drawn to Diana. Also look at the photo of the man. The focal length was around 300mm. 

    The photos were taken at the beautiful JW Marriott San Antonio Hill Country Resort & Spa

    Follow me on twitter @proimagesphoto. You never know you may just learn a new way to improve your image.

    Diana Nyad is a American Author, Journalist, Motivational Speaker and Long Distance Swimmer

    Tuesday
    Aug122014

    Protect your Images when posting on Social Media Sites

    Posting photos online is distributing information on the internet. If you think that a photo isn't going to tell a stranger anything about you, think again. A picture is truly worth a thousand words. You’re never going to know what someone is going to get out of a picture of you and your friends at the beach, park or location. They could do some research and figure out where that place is located and then continue to look into your pictures until they determine where you live. As with what you write online, you should follow the rule of leaving any pictures you wouldn’t want your mother to see away from prying eyes on your hard drive. Now this is not to scare you but to educate you on what is becoming more increasingly a transparent social society. 

    The measures you take to safeguard your images depend on the site you’re posting your images on. Common sense tells us that if you don’t want people to see a certain picture, you could just not post it, but a lot of people fail to take the people who might be looking at their photos into consideration. Each site has different ways you can protect your images. When you’re dealing with social networking sites, it’s best to determine who you want to give permission to and who should be excluded. You could also make sure everything on your profile is private to people who aren’t your friends, which can safeguard against bad guys getting many other types of information. 

    You will find that many people leave pictures of themselves or their family members out of the equation. This initiative only stops at the profile of the person who had the foresight to not show their face to the world. You always run the risk of having family members post several images that you would’ve rather left private.  On Facebook, people can even be alerted of these images if you’re tagged as being in them. Posting pictures should be a private affair. The world doesn’t need to know when and where you posted images of your last vacation. If you want your pictures to stay private, you should encourage family members to follow your lead and not post pictures of themselves or other family members. 

    A photo collage software program can do a lot towards making the task of creating a photo collage easier, but none of these programs can save you from yourself. You need to show discretion when you’re posting photos or written information on the internet. Since information flies at such a rapid pace and there are so many people lurking in cyberspace, you never know who’s going to take your pictures and run with them. If you’re not sure whether you should post something online, the best option is to not do it. You’re not going to want to deal with the damage that comes from having to save your reputation or livelihood. 

    If you would like some suggestions to help you contact me at info@proimagesphoto.com

    Wednesday
    Feb122014

    Using Depth of Field to be more creative in your photography!

    So you have a camera and just point and shoot. Getting tired of it well let's consider another way to get some great shots. If you have a camera that allows you to control your aperture then this quick tip is for you. You may have been taking photos like this already but not know it. Depth of Field is a way controlling what you want in focus and what you want out of focus. 

    For starters look at your dial on top of your camera and put it on manual. We don't need any program mode for this. The focal length and the subject difference is important. 

    Tuesday
    Jan142014

    Digital Photography Workflow instructions for every photographer.

    Maybe you received a camera for Christmas or maybe you have one sitting around. It could be a point and shoot, Digital DSLR or your iphone or android phone. It doesn't matter what does matter is that you have a good workflow to be able to remember what photos you took and where you took them. Let's start with getting setup. You first need some hardware and a cloud base account.

    External Hard Drives:

    You cannot ever get enough space so don't hold back. What you need to keep in mind is what brand that is realiable because after all your images are important and losing them is not acceptable. I like LACIE but there are so many to choose from so google or go to cnet.com to get reviews. You know Costco has a Western Digital external dekstop hardrive that has 2 terabytes (that's 2000 gigs) and the price was $99.00. This should be plenty, unless you shoot video then go bigger. Why External? Well first you don't want to use your computers internal hard becuase that slows down your computer and software. Keeping off your computer is safer.

    THE CLOUD:

    Many of you may know it and many may not so here it is in laymen's terms. Think of it as a big filing cabinet or an exerternal hard drive in cyberspace. There are quite a few to choose from. I use Dropbox but that's me. Depending on your budget and your speed of your interenet will dertermine the right one. Click here to see the lastest top 10. Read carefully and choose wisely.

    Now lets get to the workflow of downloading your files and the right way (at least my right way!) of managing your digital images.Many devices can connect directly to your laptop or desktop. To be sure refer to the owners manual of your camera and if you don't have one then google it and you will find one online.

    CONNECT YOUR CAMERA TO DESKTOP OR LAPTOP OR USE A CARD READER.

    Many cameras have mini usb ports that allow you to connect to your computer or laptop but you can also use a card reader. Make sure you have a full charge batttery if you are using your camera to connect.

    IMPORTING YOUR PHOTOS

    There are many ways to import your photos but here is my way and you can either use this or create a better solution and let me know what you did. We can always learn from each other. There are times i connect directly to the laptop and other times I use a card reader. I usually use Adobe Bridge and Lightroom or Aperture at this time and this is good because most that read this will ike this way. It's a bit easier. So I open Adobe Bridge or already have it open when I connect to my laptop or use a card reader. In Adobe Bridge I already created a few metadata templates. The metadata templates are in Bridge and allow you to create catorgies. For instance I shoot Convention Photography so I have a template that has been made with all my copyright info and keywords like Speakers, Tradeshow, General Session ect. I can edit the templates on the fly to add addtional info like location of the assignment, Name of the client ect. Once this is done i import the images and the metadata template I choose is assigned to be written into each image I import as well as new file name which you should always do. You can also setup where the images will be saved and in this case this is to your external drive. You can also import a copy to your cloud drive file as well. So now you have 2 sets.

    The reason for Keywords is simple, when you open Adobe Bridge you can put a keyword in and the photos will populate for you. It really makes your life eaiser and your production workload lighter. So this is it for now but I will add more in my next blog. Any questions suggestions let me know. Oh here is a photo I of workflow.