How Do You Prep Photo Gear for Vacation?

I’m a mostly-serious amateur photographer. That means I really enjoy photography and am constantly trying to improve my technique. I read a lot of books, magazines, and blogs. I also view lots of examples on photo sites and take plenty of shots on vacation – experimenting with technique. It also means that I haven’t quite gotten serious enough to shoot other than vacations. I know I would do better by shooting every day or at least every weekend, but, the fact is, I don’t.

What this all means is that I spend time at the beginning of every vacation trying to remember the tips, tricks and techniques I learned the last time. It also means I spend time reading my camera manual to remember what the heck all of those buttons and dials are for!

Before my next trip, I wanted to change this approach. I figured I would start months in advance to reacquaint myself with photography. I’m starting by reviewing the camera manual and tips I’ve learned. I figured I would think about the different shooting scenarios I expect and create some simple checklists to make sure the camera was set the way I needed it before I start shooting. Then, I can focus (ha! get it? focus! sorry) on the good stuff – lighting, composition, not falling of the cliff into the ocean, and so forth.

So, after that long-winded explanation, I’m seeking your help. What do you do to prepare your gear (and your head) before vacation?

Apple update brings RAW support for 6 new cameras – but not mine!

Dammit Apple! What have you got against Fuji’s very popular line of point-and-shoot cameras that have RAW capability? The Fuji FinePix F550EXR (and others in the series) is a great camera with tons of ease of use features, plus loads of manual controls. It makes a great second camera to go with a high-end DSLR. So, why can’t you support it, Apple?

Apple update brings RAW support for 6 new cameras

A Great Mac Tool for Digital Photographers (or Anyone Who Needs to Update Attributes!)

Since moving to the Mac, one of the things I’ve missed is a way to easily update the EXIF date for my digital photos. Photoshop won’t let me do it, nor will the Finder. If you think this isn’t a big deal, consider these problems:

  • Ever forget to set the time on your camera?
  • Have you modified photos and then find that iPhoto shows the out of order?
  • Do you have software that doesn’t read EXIF date but you want to sort by the date the picture was taken?

If you said yes to any of these, the you need A Better Finder Attributes. This software provides a number of different ways to update your files that Finder should have had. You can even set the changes you want to make and create a ‘droplet’ so you can just drag the files to the app and have them updated automatically.

Of course, there’s much more to it than changing EXIF date and file dates. You can modify a good number of attributes that normally require you to create some pretty ugly terminal command lines.

Plus, the developer is quite responsive to support requests.

Check it out today!

Sunset at Bandon



Since we had spent so much time hiking along the coast, it was only natural that we developed a craving for seafood. Our evening quest was to find a seafood restaurant that also provided a good sunset view. We found just the spot in Bandon, Oregon. We pulled into Bandon at the perfect sunset photo time. While hunting for the best seafood restaurant, I discovered a small pier that presented a great setting for pictures. We then found the Wheelhouse Restaurant where we had some yummy clam chowder and dungeness crab sautee.