In Episode 7 of the Improve Photography Podcast, Jim and Dustin answer listener questions about undue reliance on the LCD screen on your camera, getting started in stock photography, and much more
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Guide to Episode 7
[1:30] A listener asks how to manage batteries for speedlights and flash transmitters/receivers
Most photographers prefer to use rechargeable batteries so that you don't have to constantly buy new batteries; however, Jim and Dustin say that they prefer to simply use one-time-use batteries because then you never have to worry about showing up to a shoot and recognizing that you forgot to charge your batteries.
Jim says that if you do, however, choose to use rechargeable batteries for your speedlights, then he recommends Sanyo Eneloop batteries because they last much much longer in speedlights than most rechargeable batteries do.
[4:30] A listener asks what business model he should choose for starting a photography business as a newer photographer
Jim and Dustin agree that they think it's great that the listener has the confidence to start a business even as a newer photographer. They caution, however, that it would be irresponsible to shoot a wedding or similar one-time-only event as a newer photographer because you could mess up and wind up with a lawsuit on your hands. The recommend doing something like senior portraits, family pictures, etc because then you can redo the shoot if there is a major mistake. Jim says to save the weddings and other riskier shoots for when you're more experienced.
Dustin mentions that you shouldn't be too closed-minded when choosing a photography business model. Portraits aren't the only way to earn money in photography. Consider stock photography, product photography, corporate photography, architecture, etc.
[9:45] A funny listener asks how to photograph carrots
The listener sent in the question as a joke. Jim shares a joke of his own: Why did the carrot blush? Because he saw the salad dressing.
[11:00] A listener asks what photography magazines Dustin and Jim recommend
Jim likes Popular photography for general photography tips, and Outdoor photographer for landscape photography tips.
Dustin likes Light It! Magazine on the iPad. They agree that it has good content in the magazine, but the ads seem unbearable in their opinion.
Jim recommends Scott Kelby's personal blog for sports photography tips, and Dustin suggests Sports Illustrated for getting inspired for sports photography.
[15:30] When is it possible to know when you're chimping too much?
Dustin explains that “chimping” is photography lingo for looking at the back of your camera's LCD screen too often, and when you do, saying “oooh, aaaah” like a monkey as you see your photos.
Dustin says not to worry too much about it, but if it becomes a problem you should learn your camera buttons and settings better so that you don't worry so much about your settings.
[24:00] Dustin and Jim teach about getting started in Stock Photography
Stock photography means taking generic photos that can be purchased and downloaded by companies around the world for their own advertisements and illustrations. Jim says that each stock photo is usually only worth $1 per photo per month, but if you get enough photos on a stock site, you could be making thousands of dollars a month in passive income.
They suggest that you go to istockphoto.com to get started. You'll need to create an account and pass a short, easy test to be admitted as a photographer. Then, you upload your best photos and the photos will be available for sale if they are approved. Stock photographers must capture PERFECT image quality in order for a photo to be admitted into the catalog. That means low ISO shooting, very little post-processing, etc.
[40:00] Plugs of the Week
Jim recommends taking a look at newer mirrorless cameras. He says that he wasn't ever interested in mirrorless cameras because they were smaller than a DSLR, but still too big to fit in his pocket, so he wasn't sure why you wouldn't just hold a DSLR. However, Jim has realized that mirrorless cameras have other really nice benefits. For example, without the worry of a mirror, the cameras can have crazy fast frame rates. Also, manufacturers are more willing to try new things like wifi connectivity and app-installable operating systems.
Dustin recommends Keynote Topic. It's an iPhone app that allows you to make animated gifs right in your phone. Cool!
[46:00] Prizes for reviews
The winner of the prize this week was VVSSMM! If that's you, email us at prize AT improvephotography.com to get your free online class!
You can enter to win a free online photography class from Jim and Dustin by going to the Improve Photography Podcast in iTunes and writing a one or two sentence review. Jim says he really appreciates those who have been nice enough to write reviews as it helps spread the show to others.