Digital Innovations

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Joe Farace Posted: Aug 24, 2011 Published: Jul 01, 2011 4 comments
As a student at the Maryland Institute College of Art, I attended a class on color and my very first assignment was landscape photography. I wasn’t then or am I now a serious landscape photographer, but as a serious student I developed a set of personal guiding principles on the “what” and “how” of photographing landscapes that I still follow today. These four principles are not cast in concrete and are presented here only as guidelines for your own explorations in landscape photography.
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Joe Farace Posted: Jul 13, 2011 Published: Jun 01, 2011 1 comments
As I write this, the temperature outside my office window is -11˚. It’s at times like this when my thoughts go to my favorite (warm) place to kick back and relax. Acapulco is different from other Mexican resorts because it’s a city with a wonderful history first and a resort second, and then there’s that old Hollywood connection. You can see some of my Acapulco photos in the self-published book Acapulco, Paradise of the Americas (www.blurb.com/my/book/detail/196617) with text by my friend Don Bain. For examples of my travel photography, you can preview the first 15 pages and see why I love Acapulco so much. If you would like a copy, I’ve removed all markups from the softbound edition so Shutterbug readers and their friends can purchase it for just the cost of production and shipping.
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Joe Farace Posted: Jun 22, 2011 Published: May 01, 2011 88 comments
This month I’ll celebrate one of those “milestone” birthdays that everyone talks about and here in the Pixel Palace things are definitely looking up. Digital MD’s (www.digitalmd.net) Kevin Elliott repaired all of the Windows-related problems on the Boot Camp partition on my iMac and by the time you read this I’ll have installed Windows 7. Then I’ll be ready to test all of those $29 just-as-good-as-Photoshop Windows-only products that I’ve passed on as of late. There’s no news from Yahoo! about getting my Flickr account fixed but I don’t expect any and I am just too lazy to create a new account and upload all those photos—again. You can see what’s there at www.flickr.com/photos/joefarace or better yet visit my SmugMug page (http://farace.smugmug.com/) to see how my photo-a-day project is progressing and lots more.
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Joe Farace Posted: Apr 01, 2011 7 comments

“Human mechanisms are made by human hands, Robin. None of them is infallible.”—Adam West as Batman

What’s in your utility belt? This month, I’ll introduce you to some useful Mac OS and Windows imaging software that will enhance productivity, increase your creativity, and often costs just a few bucks. To add some spice I’ve included a few useful hardware accessories that will make life in...

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Joe Farace Posted: Mar 01, 2011 10 comments

“Computers = Ticket to Hell.”—from an old Alien Skin Software T-shirt

I’ve always been an ambidextrous computer user, having a Windows system on my left and a Mac OS computer on my right. That Windows computer handles Internet surfing for Web Profiles and e-mail. It’s also where I test the $29 “just as good as Photoshop but Windows-only” imaging...

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Barry Tanenbaum Posted: Feb 01, 2011 1 comments

Here’s the thing: the dogs aren’t fighting; they’re playing.

When they run, jump, growl, and tussle in canine versions of tag, wrestling, and catch me if you can, it often looks like fighting. It can make people uneasy.

Michael Crouser took these photographs, which have been selected from his book, Dog Run, over a two-year...

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Joe Farace Posted: Feb 01, 2011 4 comments

“…everything looks better in black and white.”—Paul Simon, Concert in the Park

Proving that you can, in fact, change your tune, Paul Simon altered the lyrics of his 1973 hit song Kodachrome from the original “…everything looks worse in black and white.” When he performed the song at a concert in Central Park on August 15, 1991 everything looked...

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Joe Farace Posted: Jan 01, 2011 0 comments

“It’s just another New Year’s Eve. Let’s make it the best.”—Barry Manilow

OK, I admit it. I like Barry Manilow’s music. Heck, I even like Ray Stevens’s song “I Need Your Help, Barry Manilow” and am amazed you can’t buy it on iTunes. So what’s your New Year’s resolution? Quit smoking? (I did that 30 years ago.)...

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Joe Farace Posted: Dec 01, 2010 0 comments

“One of the nice things about Christmas is that you can make people forget the past with a present.”—Anonymous

It was a dark and stormy night…(continued from last month). Western Digital (www.wdc.com) asked me to return my recalcitrant network drive to them and, after taking a look, declared it DOA. Every cloud has a...

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Joe Farace Posted: Nov 01, 2010 3 comments

“All power corrupts, but we need the electricity”—Anonymous

It was a dark and stormy night… Mary and I were watching a DVD when the house was hit with a massive power surge. For a second I wondered about my computers but quickly forgot about them until turning them on a few days later. My Mac Pro and peripherals that are connected to a hefty APC (

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Joe Farace Posted: Oct 01, 2010 2 comments

“How many photographers does it take to change a light bulb? Fifty. One to change the bulb, and 49 to say, “I could have done that!”—Anonymous

I wanted to kick off this month’s column with an old trick that gets better every year: green screen photography. Lighting considerations are extremely critical when shooting against a green or blue background. Your...

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Joe Farace Posted: Sep 01, 2010 1 comments

“I don’t have a photograph, but you can have my footprints. They’re upstairs in my socks.”—Groucho Marx

Recently I saw an impressive demonstration of Samsung’s (www.samsung.com/us/learningresources3D) three-dimensional television and while not inexpensive, it was far less than...

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Joe Farace Posted: Aug 01, 2010 0 comments

“Cleverness is like a lens with a very sharp focus. Wisdom is more like a wide-angle lens.”—Edward de Bono

Old news now, but when I started writing this month’s column I’d just purchased an Apple iPad, which may turn out to be a flop like the original Newton—don’t laugh, I had one of those, too—or a runaway success like the iPod. So far, the...

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Joe Farace Posted: Jul 01, 2010 0 comments

“Thanks to the Interstate Highway System, it is now possible to travel from coast to coast without seeing anything.”—Charles Kuralt

The most important secret I can share with you about travel photography is that you should not buy a new camera or lens just before leaving for Kathmandu, Machu Picchu, or even Boise. The next most essential...

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Joe Farace Posted: Jun 01, 2010 0 comments

“Mickey Mouse is, to me, a symbol of independence. He was a means to an end.”
—Walt Disney

When I was a kid I watched Disneyland being built on Walt Disney’s TV show of the same name and so Anaheim, the location of this year’s PMA (Photo Marketing Association) Show, has always held a special place in my heart. Yet during this trip, I never saw Sleeping...

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