News from Rod Barbee Photography
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December 2012 Rod Barbee Photography Newsletter
Greetings
So the year is coming to an end. It's been an up and down year and I had to cancel several workshops. But on the other metaphorically ring-bedazzled hand, I got to go to Iceland! And several of you went with me. I really liked Iceland and am looking forward to my next chance to go back.
Other neat things happened, like Nikon coming out with the D800 with its monstrous 36 Megapixels. I hate that camera. I hate it because I want one. Not that I need 36 Mpixels, I have no idea what I'd need files that big for; but because it's full frame, it has low noise at high ISO, it takes HD video, and it's new and shiny, I want one. But I'll need to fill a few more workshops before the UPS guy brings one of those to my doorstep.
Lightroom 4 came out this year, making an already great program even more enjoyable to use. I still haven't used the Book Module to create a book but it's on the list of things to try.

And for the new year, I've already begun working on a new book project that I'm hoping to get done in the next three to four months. It may be released as an ebook or I may go the traditional route. Either way, I've had this idea crawling around my brain like a lost mouse in a maze for the last three years so it's about time to find that cheese.
Air display for your iPad (or Android)
 
I couldn't work with just one display. In fact, trying to work with Photoshop on my laptop turns me into a tightly wound ball of irritation.
And sometimes I even wish I had a third display for my pc at home. Wouldn't it be great if my iPad could act as another display? Turns out there's an app for that. Several in fact. The one I ended up getting, Avatron's Air Display, is also the most highly rated. It works over an existing network, or you can use your laptop to create an ad-hoc network. So no wires needed. After you've installed the app on your device and the software on your computer, it's just a matter of activating the app on the iPad and then clicking on the Air Display icon in either the menu bar on the Mac or the system tray in Windows. Select the device from the list and you're done. You can arrange the displays any way you want even above your prime display. The app itself contains all the connection instructions.

So how well does it work? I think it works great. There's a little bit of a drag lag when you move windows from your main display to the iPad, but once it's moved things work fast.
Air Display works with iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch, and Android.
There's more. Air Display also works computer to computer. So if you want to turn your laptop screen into an extension of your desktop, Avatron has a utility for that as well. As of now, I believe you can only connect one Air Display device to a computer at a time. But I read on their support forum that support for multiple devices is on the to-do list. So theoretically, one day I might be able to use both my laptop and iPad as extra displays, in addition to the two connected to my pc. I could surround myself with displays.

One month left for Early Bird discounts
 
Have you seen the big list of workshops and tours I've posted for next year? If not, get yourself over to my workshops page and take a peek. I've got some of my old faithful trips like Olympic and Palouse, and I've added some new trips like Michigan's Upper Peninsula in Autumn and Grand Teton National Park. And then there's Iceland, my new best friend, with both winter and summer trips.

And remember, if you register for a workshop before the end of the year you'll get an early bird discount of $50 for each workshop. See my workshops page for the full details.

Big news from The Turning Gate
 
The Turning Gate has released its Lightroom Publishing Services plug-in. This plug-in is going to revolutionize the way I post and update my image galleries. I've blogged about it here, so I won't repeat much other than to say that the Publisher is awesome. Chocolate chip cookie awesome.
Oregon Pinot Noir awesome.
Free Holiday Shipping From Think Tank
 
Our friends at Think Tank Photo have just announced that for the first time in their history they are offering free FedEx Ground Shipping on all of their gear. This special holiday offer runs through December 31, 2012. And, just in time for the holidays, Think Tank is releasing a whole new slate of gear, including the Airport Navigator, the photography industry's first rolling pilot's case, the Glass Limo, the photo industry's slimmest profile backpack for carrying "Big Glass," such as a 600mm f/4, and the CityWalker messenger bag series. In addition to the free shipping, as you are a friend of mine you will also receive a free gift with any purchase over $50. To partake of this special offer, click here.
Oregon Coast Memories now on Kindle!
 
My latest book, Oregon Coast Memories, is now available as a Kindle book for $9.99. Just a couple of weeks ago it was at $1.50. Go figure. I should have told y'all about it then I guess but I needed fodder for the newsletter. Curses!.
The hard cover edition is still my favorite, but this one looks pretty good on the iPad.

If you'd like an autographed copy of the real hold-it-in-your-hands-and-turn-the-pages book, you can get one of those from me here.

Big Lightroom e-book
 
You know those big heavy $40+ books on Lightroom? Well here's one in e-book form for half the cost.
The folks at Craft&Vison have just released Lightroom 4 Unmasked by Piet Van den Eynde. At 312 spreads, this ebook contains high-resolution screen shots, detailed instructions on Lightroom's features, tips, case studies, and more. These case studies represent real-world use of Lightroom and help make it all make more sense.
The book also covers various plug-ins available for Lightroom including a few that I myself am using, including the aforementioned plug-ins from The Turning Gate.
I really like the ebook format for reference and text books like this. It's searchable and contains hyperlinks to vendor and other sites.
So click on over and take a look. There's a downloadable Table of Contents for you to look at before you decide to buy.
Lightroom Preferences: Store Presets with Catalog
 
Ever wonder what this innocuous little setting does? Well, it does a lot. And it's a big deal. And you really need to understand how it works. If you're not sure about what this setting does, take a look at this great explanation.
And if you've never visited the Lightroom Forums, it's a great place for accurate and timely answers to your Lightroom questions. It's hosted by Victoria Bampton, she of the indispensible Lightroom Missing FAQ books.

The only thing I'd add to this excellent explanation is that you need to remember to include your Lightroom presets folder in any routine backups you do. Lightroom's backup utility DOES NOT backup this all important folder. You can do this automatically with programs like Genie Backup, Norton Ghost, Acronis, or others. Or you can simply copy and paste the entire folder to a back up location.

Happy and safe holidays
 
Well that's a wrap on the 2012 newsletter season (unless I think of something earthshatteringly important between now and the 2013 opener that I know you just can't live without).

Be sure to keep an eye on my blog. I'm trying to add content almost daily. And by daily I mean I usually think about it daily. I actually add insightful and relevant material--well--moderately useful material anyway--every week or so.
Ok. So maybe it's not every week. Stop judging me!
But I did just recently add my focus blending tutorial. So there's that. I bet you're now feeling just a tad guilty about judging me aren't you? You should really sign up for a workshop to alleviate that crushing guilt.
Speaking of which (workshops, not guilt) I hope to see many of you next year at one or more of my workshops or tours (they make awesome Christmas presents).
Until next time, Happy Holidays everyone!
 

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