News from Rod Barbee Photography
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November 2012 Rod Barbee Photography Newsletter
Greetings
Wow. It's been quite a week so far, hasn't it? I certainly hope that if you're on the East Coast or have friends or relatives there that everybody is safe and warm and dry.
If you're so inclined, you can donate to the Red Cross for Hurricane Sandy storm relief here.
Focus Tune Auto-Focus Calibration Software
 
You may have heard of the Lens-Align system for fine tuning the autofocus on those cameras that have autofocus fine-tuning. It's basically a target with a ruler. You photograph it and analyze the results to see if your lens has front or back-focus problems. You can then apply an adjustment in the camera to compensate.
It's kind of a trial and error proposition where you apply the adjustment and then take another photo and analyze it. Lather. Rinse. Repeat.
So now, Michael Tapes, the maker of Lens Align, has come out with Focus Tune, software that will make this process a lot easier. One of the ways you can use it is to first take a series of pictures, adjusting the AF fine tuning for each picture. Load the pictures into the computer, launch Focus Tune and have it analyze the pictures for sharpness. It then produces a graph showing you which setting produced the sharpest image. Sweet.
Beyond that, you can also use the software to compare the accuracy of your various focus points, compare different aperture settings for sharpness, and more. Essentially, it's kind of a lens testing kit.
And you don't even need to own Lens Align to use this. You can download a target and use that instead.
I just got the software and I haven't made any shots to load into yet, but when I do, I'll report back. In the mean time, check it out at the Focus Tune site. You'll find a demo video, a link to download a demo of the software along with some sample data to play with, and a forum.
Additional Workshops Posted
 
As I mentioned a couple of weeks ago, I've been posting additional workshops. In fact, I just posted a trip to a new location (well, new for me): Michigan's Upper Peninsula. I'll be co-leading a fall color trip to this gorgeous location next year with my friend David Muse.
I've also posted a pair of workshops I'll be leading with Kim Hoshal: Grand Teton National Park and Bandon, on the Oregon Coast
All three of the above workshops are in the fall. There are still a few details to work out in each but I wanted to get them posted to help out with any plans you may be making.
Also be sure to note the workshop discounts I've posted on my workshops page. There are discounts for signing up before the end of this year as well as discounts for multiple workshops.
And keep a look out, I'll most likely be posting another trip or two soon, including the Willamette Valley Winery tour.
TTG CE2 Publisher
 
If you've visited my website, and you probably have if you're reading this, what you'll see is a site that was almost entirely created within Lightroom using plug-ins from The Turning Gate (the only exceptions are the Newsletter archives and a few articles).
Lately I've been beta testing the new Publisher plug-in from The Turning Gate. This plug-in will allow you to use Lightroom's Publishing Service to update your galleries without the need of exporting from the Web module each time. Pretty cool. It also means using templates that you get to create. And using templates means shared resources. Make a change to the template and that change is reflected in every single gallery you have that uses that template. Now that's cool.
I've written more about the Publisher on my blog.
Photograph the World
 
And in case you missed my little mid-October catch-up mini-newsletter (my, that's a lot of hyphens), be sure to check out Don Mammoser's new Photograph the World Newsletter. If you've got some worldly travel plans in your future, there's a good chance Don's been there before you and has already done all the scouting. So click on over to his new site and see what he has to offer.
Looking ahead to 2014
 
Yes, I'm already planning for 2014. But only because there's at least one big trip in the planning stages: Patagonia. Don Mammoser and I are beginning to plan a trip to Patagonia for April of 2014. I don't know yet what the price will be as we're just starting this process but I wanted to let all you long-term planners know. If this trip is something you'd be interested in, send me an email or reply to this newsletter and I'll put you on the list and keep you in the loop.
I'll most likely have another summer Iceland trip on the schedule as well, so if that is of interest to you, let me know about that as well. And maybe even Greenland.
Happy Halloween (and Thanksgiving too)
 
So I don't have any new or exciting or dangerous adventures to share with you. Bailey and I continue our walks in the woods without incident. Occasionally we'll see some cougar scat, but fortunately, no cougar. It already scatted.
But speaking of cats, have you every tried to make a Halloween costume for your cat? Me neither. But then again, I haven't had a cat for nearly 20 years. So if I tried to make a costume for my cats it would either mean I'm very disturbed or that I had zombie cats. I'm not sure if that's a win-win or a lose-lose.
Anyway, one of my favorite comedic writers has just the thing for a cat costume. If you're easily offended by "salty" language you might not want to click here. But really, you should. It nearly made me snort coffee through my nose.
And I know this valuable tip is kind of late for Halloween, seeing it's either happening right now or has already passed you by. Just think of it as an early 2013 Halloween present.

And to all of you in the northeastern US, again, I hope everyone is safe and that you and yours have come through the storm intact. It's been amazing and frightening and awe inspiring to watch what's been happening on the other side of the country. Makes me grateful for the climate here in the Pacific Northwest. Sure we have the occasional earthquake or volcanic eruption or Gore-Tex outbreak. But really, we've got it pretty good compared to some parts of the country.
So please everybody, no matter where you are, stay safe.

 

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Rod Barbee Photography | 172 Robin Lane | Port Ludlow | WA | 98365