Monday, December 22, 2008

Flash Palette just reduced their pricing !!!!!!!!!

Many ask me what we use for the flash portions on our website
we use FP templates, but calling Flash Palette tools templates is like calling a Cadillac Escalad (sp)
a truck !

Click here to go to their site !


Portrait Retouching in LightRoom version 2

an excellent how to article
click here
and Merry Christmas to ya all !


Sunday, December 14, 2008

just for fun

I saw this on another blog and thought it was neat. Things I have done are bolded.

1. Started your own blog (Duh)
2. Slept under the stars
3. Played in a band
4. Visited Hawaii
5. Watched a meteor shower
6. Given more than you can afford to charity
7. Been to Disneyworld
8. Climbed a mountain (several including Half Dome)
9. Held a praying mantis
10. Sang a solo
11. Bungee jumped
12. Visited Paris
13. Watched a lightning storm at sea
14. Taught yourself an art from scratch (photography)
15. Adopted a child
16. Had food poisoning
17. Walked to the top of the Statue of Liberty
18. Grown your own vegetables
19. Seen the Mona Lisa in France
20. Slept on an overnight train
21. Had a pillow fight
22. Hitch hiked (just once and a long time ago, don't tell my mom)
23. Taken a sick day when you’re not ill
24. Built a snow fort
25. Held a lamb
26. Gone skinny dipping
27. Run a marathon
28. Ridden in a gondola in Venice
29. Seen a total eclipse
30. Watched a sunrise or sunset
31. Hit a home run
32. Been on a cruise
33. Seen Niagara Falls in person
34. Visited the birthplace of your ancestors
35. Seen an Amish community
36. Taught yourself a new language (does international morse code count?)
37. Had enough money to be truly satisfied (it doesn’t take much)
38. Seen the Leaning Tower of Pisa in person
39. Gone rock climbing (on a rock wall)
40. Seen Michelangelo’s David
41. Sung karaoke (yes but they were not happy I tried)
42. Seen Old Faithful geyser erupt
43. Bought a stranger a meal at a restaurant
44. Visited Africa
45. Walked on a beach by moonlight
46. Been transported in an ambulance
47. Had your portrait painted
48. Gone deep sea fishing
49. Seen the Sistine Chapel in person
50. Been to the top of the Eiffel Tower in Paris
51. Gone scuba diving or snorkeling (snorkeling but I am not good at it)
52. Kissed in the rain
53. Played in the mud
54. Gone to a drive-in theater
55. Been in a movie
56. Visited the Great Wall of China
57. Started a business
58. Taken a martial arts class
59. Visited Russia
60. Served at a soup kitchen
61. Sold Girl Scout Cookies
62. Gone whale watching
63. Got flowers for no reason
64. Donated blood, platelets or plasma
65. Gone sky diving
66. Visited a Nazi Concentration Camp
67. Bounced a check (yes it was an accident and I don't make a habit of it)
68. Flown in a helicopter
69. Saved a favorite childhood toy
70. Visited the Lincoln Memorial
71. Eaten Caviar
72. Pieced a quilt
73. Stood in Times Square
74. Toured the Everglades
75. Been fired from a job
76. Seen the Changing of the Guards in London
77. Broken a bone (while sky diving)
78. Been on a speeding motorcycle
79. Seen the Grand Canyon in person
80. Published a book
81. Visited the Vatican
82. Bought a brand new car
83. Walked in Jerusalem
84. Had your picture in the newspaper
85. Read the entire Bible
86. Visited the White House
87. Killed and prepared an animal for eating (Does Fish count and Froglegs count then yes)

88. Had chickenpox
89. Saved someone’s life (with use of CPR)
90. Sat on a jury
91. Met someone famous
92. Joined a book club
93. Lost a loved one, more than once
94. Had a baby (don't tink so I'm wrong sex !)
95. Seen the Alamo in person
96. Swam in the Great Salt Lake
97. Been involved in a law suit

99. Been stung by a bee
100. Seen Mount Rushmore in person
101. Learned to play an instrument

Give it a try, post to your blog, and comment here, or if you don’t blog (why not?)

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Painting with light

Painting with light is actually a term used for paint with flash of a large object when there is little or no ambient light.

A car or any other large object that needs more than just the ambient light is a good example of something that we might want to "paint with light"

Here are two images one with the existing light no flash added and one where we walked around the car and flash was used multiple times, the subject in the one we used to paint was playing in front of our camera and is a good example that we used a long shutter speed (aprox 30 seconds)
ISO was 50

There is no flash mounted at the camera, we simply walk around the object and fire the hand held flash unit multiple times, as in multiple brush strokes with paint, but in this case light !
Therefore the term paint with light.


Friday, October 31, 2008

Wow, I was reminded I have not posted here in some time....

It is true I have been very busy working
both on my own customer projects and shooting for Neal Cowen,
mainly as his location/school photographer.

While this has been fun and profitable
it has kept me from many other projects

Which brings me to my simple tip(s)
Batch actions and tools that save time

What we do to save time when working on images......

1) stay out of PhotoShop unless you need to do art work with layers
2) use actions whenever possible while in PhotoShop to save time
3) find DAM (digital asset management) tools that help you get things done faster

A few DAM tool recommendations......

LightRoom by Adobe (By far the best method to help you stay out of PhotoShop)
Thumbs Plus from
ACDSee from

Gotta run I will try and come back with more tips soon
and remember you are welcome to email or post questions right here !


Monday, July 21, 2008

Marie Moyers is looking for someone to share studio space with

Reply to her here

here is here original request.......

Hi Steve

Would you tell me if you know of a photographer who has a studio (not in their home), maybe just starting out or maybe does not have lots of equipment. I am wanting to share studio time and RENT with them.

Thank you

Here is a link to her website

Why I love LightRoom (LR)

It (LightRoom) allows me to work quickly and efficiently even with hundreds of images

what used to takes us days in PS and Bridge we now do in one morning or afternoon with LightRoom (LR)
Creative choices abound with Presets, in fact Presets is just one of the awesome things about LR

With One single raw file I created the two images here, in less time than it takes to type this one single sentence !


Today make this smart choice and Join the Pro4Um

Do it today and save 20%

The Pro4Um if you have no idea what it is, you need to learn and embrace it !
Yes I know there are many on line Forums for photography today, but value is what sets the Pro4Um apart from the rest.

"It is that valuable, in fact it is much greater value than anything else you can do to enhance your career" Steve Lott
Well…here we are, the last day of the Pro4uM Yearly Sale. Thank you so much for being a part of the Pro4uM. I really do appreciate all of your support, giving, and participation. Really and truly, YOU make the Pro4uM what it is…a giving Family of Professional Photographers.

The sale will continue through today, and then it will end. We will not be doing any other sales till July of next year.

As one final reminder, the sale is:

1 – Year Membership: $200 – Savings $49 or 20% off

The price gets better the more years you sign up for.
Kirk Voclain

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Adobe PhotoShop LightRoom Saturday September 6,2008

I will once again be teaching LightRoom at BPCC
this is a one day course thru community workforce (Non Credit)
Attendance is limited to the first 12 students
Contact Bossier Parish Community College
to enroll.

September 6 is a Saturday


Saturday, July 12, 2008

I love this man's vision !!!!!!

Click Here
Take 22 minutes to refresh your thinking about everything !
Like I have always said Passion makes a big difference

Thursday, July 10, 2008

I am very saddened to report the loss of a friend

Richard Lea
know to his Ham Radio friends as NZ5S
Passed away early this afternoon July 10, 2008

He was a consummate professional photographer, a dear friend,
and one that gave to all he met

I know in my heart he is now with God
but our community has lost one great person
He was 38 years old.

Prayers to his family

Steve Lott

Saturday, July 5, 2008

A great new LR Book by the Queen of LightRoom

This is a reference or FAQ e-book
written by a young lady that knows her stuff !
click here for details

cheers !

Friday, July 4, 2008

Canon 30D For Sale from a friend

- Canon 30D - $675 and Canon 430EX Flash - $140 ---- or $790 for both.

This camera is used by a professional as one of 3 cameras, it has been well taken care of.

If you want to see the photos that this camera has taken you can check them out at

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

HDR Tidbits (links, news, inspiration)

Happy Friday again. Everyone seems to be enjoying the HDR video so I thought I’d include a whole post about HDR stuff. First off, let’s start with some software:


There’s a few programs you can use for HDR.

1) Photoshop - I’m not a huge fan of Photoshop’s Merge to HDR

2) Photomatix - definitely my favorite. Oh yeah, NAPP members get a 20% discount. Here’s the link to the NAPP member website to get the code.

3) FDR Tools - Cool enough. I’ve tried it but I like Photomatix more. It just seems more intuitive to me personally.

4) Dynamic Photo HDR - This program looks like the best of all of them to me. The interface looks awesome. However, it’s PC only so I haven’t been able to try it out yet.


• I did a 2 part NAPP tutorial on the NAPP members website. One on Merge to HDR in Photoshop and another one on using Photomatix.

• I think HDR really shines for real estate and landscapes. Here’s a neat article on using HDR for real estate photography.

Stuck in Customs has a cool tutorial

• Ben Willmore is teaching a class on it at the upcoming Photoshop World in Las Vegas

• Another HDR tutorial I found on Flickr


Finally, here’s some inspirational links to some great HDR photography.

• The mother lode of all HDR inspiration over at Flickr’s HDR group.

Photomatix’s website has some really great examples of HDR. Check out Maciek Duczynski’s portfolio there for some amazing stuff.

As always, if you’ve got some related news, links, websites or tutorials let us know in the comments area. Have a great weekend!

View Original Article

Friday Vid. - Moving Between Laptop and Desktop

Happy Friday. This week I’ve got a video for you that answers the never ending question of how to move between a laptop and desktop with Lightroom. I’ve been asked this just about every time I teach Lightroom and it occurred to me that I haven’t really done a video to cover it. Fortunately it’s a lot simpler then it may seem and Adobe has given us an easy way to save out specific images or folders to move from one catalog to another (which by the way is really what is happening when you move from one computer to another). If you’ve had any experiences that are similar to what I show then let us know in the comments and if you’ve found any hiccups along the way, by all means let us know as well. So, watch the video. Enjoy it. Feel the thrill of moving freely between computers with no chains to hold you back :) Oh yeah, and enjoy your weekend.

Click here to watch the video. (22MB)

View Original Article

Presets - Summer Haze

Summer is in full swing, SPF 45 and lemonade are flowing, and that inspired my latest preset. Actually, summer has been in full swing here in Tampa, FL for about 6 weeks but hey, I love the heat so it’s all good for me. This week’s preset is named Summer Haze. I was working on some photos and I was trying to get across that summery, warm, hazy feeling and this is what came out of it. The preset adjusts the white balance, Vibrance, Saturation, and Split Toning sliders. I even tossed in a bit of a Tone Curve adjustment on it in the Shadows since the other settings seemed to muddy the photo up a bit, and I thought it needed some more blacks to bring back the contrast. It works great on fun-styled photos outdoors and even makes a pretty nifty wedding effect.

I hope you enjoy. Speaking of summer, I’m bailing out of work a couple hours early today to head to Busch Gardens. They have this “Summer Nights” things going on and it’s a lot more bearable later in the day. Hmmmmm… Summer Nights. Sounds like a good name for a preset :) Enjoy!

Click here to see a sample of the preset.

Click here to download Matt’s Summer Haze Preset

Click here to see a video on how to install presets.

View Original Article

Blogged with the Flock Browser

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Layers what the heck is it really ??????

I know I know and most of you do to
But all of us start some where and some of my recent students needed and basic on Layers
since I try and use this site to help my current students as well as many others

Here is a link to "About Layers" on the Adobe Website

I hope this helps some one, iow please add a comment when you find something useful
It often seems I am talking to myself here :)

Cheers !


Sunday, June 8, 2008

A very very simple but Time saving PhotoShop Tip


this simple keyboard command repeats the running of the last filter you used in PhotoShop
any filter !

cheers !

Sunday, June 1, 2008

I am teaching again this summer at BPCC

PhotoShop for photographers

it's a Three day course, 4 hours each day
June 17,18 and 19
Telephone 318-678-6016

You should know the tools palette and other basics
I will teach things that help the working photographer in PhotoShop
like opening closed eyes, head swaps, changing the color of a garment
Darkening blue sys while leaving the rest of the image nice and bright
HDR (High Def Resolution)
raw file processing
File safety and work flow so you can have a life again
and a bunch of Oh Wow one minute tips and tricks, many of which will be worth the time and money for this course.


Sunday, May 4, 2008

Dr. Eddy Shell went to be with God this past Friday

just in case you missed it in the paper Eddy Shell passed away Friday

He served at BPCC (Bossier Parish Community College) since 1967 and was a member of
SARA (Shreveport Amateur Radio Association)
as well as PPLA (Professional Photographers of Louisiana) and even a past president of PPLA
he was a fellow Ham radio operator and a friend.

Best Regards

Saturday, April 26, 2008

A new Battery unit for your flash....

Victor Green shared news about this item with me

BVSPulsar Battery Unit


Thursday, April 24, 2008

batteries for your flash units....

Last night at Bossier Parish Community College
during one of the classes that I teach
I started a discussion on batteries

Did you know that Ni cad batteries are 3 tenths of a volt less that regular alkaline
1.2 volt per cell for Ni Cad versus 1.5 volt per cell for alkaline
if the flash you use takes 4 cells then you are short 1.2 volts even with brand new freshly charged Ni Cads !

One of my students (Victor Green) did some research and shared this with me...............

Power source options for external flash units :

Most Canon external flash units run off four standard AA (LR6) alkaline cells, though one - the tiny and discontinued Canon 160E - used instead a small 2CR5 lithium battery of the type used by many EOS cameras. Here are some power source options for the AA type of flash.

Remember that all batteries can leak. If they do you?ll find your beloved flash unit full of a corrosive liquid that will damage or even destroy it. It?s wise to remove any cells from your flash if you aren?t planning on using it for some length of time - a few weeks or whatever.

Note also that some flash units can behave erratically when battery power is low. Normally weak batteries just result in long recycle times, but on the 430EZ at least low batteries can result in strange behaviour - the flash triggering randomly, the zoom motor buzzing at odd intervals, etc. So if your flash unit suddenly starts acting strangely try changing the batteries. This can also happen if the flash unit isn?t firmly seated in the hotshoe or if the contacts are dirty or corroded.

Standard AA non-alkaline (zinc carbon) cells.

- Pros: Available for next to nothing.

- Cons: Don?t last very long at all and can?t be recharged. They also have fairly high internal resistance and so it takes a few extra seconds for the flash unit to recharge between shots.

Standard AA alkaline cells.

- Pros: Alkalines are cheaply and readily available anywhere. They store a fair bit of power and let you go a reasonably long time between replacements.

- Cons: Last much longer than carbon zinc cells but otherwise have the same disadvantages. Recycle time to full power can range from 6-20 seconds, depending on how new the cells are.

Rechargeable nickel-cadmium (NiCad) cells.

- Pros: Relatively inexpensive, rechargeable hundreds of times. They have a fairly low internal resistance and so decrease the recycle time the flash unit will take to recharge to full power to 4-6 seconds. NiCads also have better cold-weather performance than alkalines - their performance suffers when the temperature drops below freezing, but not as badly.

- Cons: Don?t store as much juice as alkalines, so you have to switch batteries much more often. NiCad cells are also hazardous household waste (heavy metals) and should not be thrown into the regular garbage system. NiCad cells drain flat (?self-discharge?) within a few weeks after charging.

Lithium AA (FR6) cells.

- Pros: A fairly new development, these are lithium cells built to an AA shape. They store a lot of power, have long shelf lives, and recharge the flash at roughly the same rate as alkalines.

- Cons: Really expensive and not rechargeable. Steep death curves - they?ll work fine and then suddenly run out of power unexpectedly. Most importantly, only the latest Canon Speedlites can use them. Older models are not compatible with lithium AA cells owing to power issues, and might be damaged by them. The 540EZ and all EX series flash units can safely use lithium cells; all other flash units cannot.

Rechargeable nickel metal hydride (NiMH) cells.

-Pros: Affordable and rechargeable hundreds of times. Higher capacity (1600 mAH and up) cells have similar capacities to alkaline cells. Not as hazardous to the environment as NiCads. Have a similar recycle time to full charge as NiCads - around 4-6 seconds. Personally I think NiMHs are the best AA battery technology around when you factor in cost and performance issues.

- Cons: Require different chargers from commonly available NiCad chargers. Supposedly can self-discharge in a couple of weeks, but I?ve never had a problem with this.

External battery pack.

- Pros: High-power packs can decrease recycle time to a second or two, letting you shoot flash photos more rapidly. Store a lot of power and so mean you don?t have to change batteries as often.

- Cons: Large, bulky packs linked to the flash via coiled cords. High-power battery packs work only with a handful of high-end flash units with the necessary power socket. Third-party battery packs are required for use with other Canon flash units, but don?t have as rapid recycle times.

Some also use NiMH cells

Give your battery choice more than a glancing thought !


Tuesday, April 22, 2008

High Speed sync with Flash the Radio Popper way

above image was same equipment but flash needed to be closer in
however shutter speed was 1/1600
aperature was f 3.2
70-200mm Canon lens at focal length of 108mm

yesterday I got to use some new gear from
and just in time as it was a session that had to be done during noon day sun on a bright and sunny day

These radio control devices are unlike traditional radio control of flash they maintain the Canon (and Nikon) High speed flash capability

Equipment and settings
Canon 5D 50 ISO
Canon 550EX Flash Off Camera with a radiopopper receiver
controlled by Canon St-e2 with a radiopopper transmitter
Shutter speed 1/320 aperature at f 2.8
Bright and sunny day noon day image taken at 1:10 pm

Wednesday, April 16, 2008 enhances LightRoom slideshows !

click here to see their site

we use it to place slide shows on our website right from with LightRoom
yes With sound !!!!!!!


Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Adobe PhotoShop for Photographers from a Photographer

As requested many times over the past few years
I will be teaching a summer course at BPCC (Bossier Parish Community College)
On adobe PhotoShop
this will be three days four hours on each day
Date 17-19 of June
Sign ups are limited to 12 students
Call Bossier Parish Community College Community Education department
cost is under $100

cheers !


Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Adobe LightRoom Version 2.0 is out although in Beta

click here to read all about it

This is an exciting and valuable update even if it is still in beta


Monday, March 3, 2008

recent news on the FlashPalette (FP) website......

New member FP Team Steve Lott
Here is a little diddy, he is doing advanced video tutorials demos for flashpalettes sites along with new things coming out and we are so thrilled to have him on our Team. Congrats STEVE!!! I dubb thee our "Video Tutorial Dude" and he sure is smart!

To see all the awesome products Flashpallete offers click here

Most of their products are simple to use, but as a photographer I can understand we are a visual mind set
So a Few months ago I did a few informal How To movies of FP products
and now I have another Nick name "Video Tutorial Dude" :)

cheers !


Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Now selling floral blanket backgrounds direct to photographers

click to see the new store
New blankets and even baby poser covers being added weekly so check back
if you do not see what you want call Zo at 318-965-1055

Sunday, February 24, 2008

HDR High Data Range Imaging

click here to see a tutorial on HDR technique

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Dury's CF Card special but twin pack for under $30

two one Gig CF cards for under $30 click here for this limited time special

I have bought from Dury's numerous times
they are fast in shipping
and always professional service !


Friday, February 15, 2008

Casting call............

Date: February 15, 2008

Re: Open casting call

The BPCC Film Institute is holding an open casting call to choose talent for its summer film project titled "Anything For The Game" (written by Jonathan Posey).

Casting call:

Thursday, February 28, 2008 on the campus of

Building D – 3rd floor

6:00 – 9:00 pm

*At this initial call, the casting crew will be holding auditions for 9 principle characters including:

4 young males (age 16 and up), 3 young females (age 16 and up), 1 older male (30 - 40),

and 1 older female (30 -40).


Thursday, March 6, 2008

Building D – 3rd floor

6:00 – 9:00 pm

Sunday, February 10, 2008

This one is for Amanda

if your a proud new owner of a Nikon GPS enabled Camera like Amanda is
check this out Click here
"Where was I when I took that photo"
will no longer be a question when you add this equipment to your gear

Other Camera owners (non Nikon users such as myself) may find this helpful
click here


Friday, February 8, 2008

Export LR files by date

click here if you organize your sessions by dated folders like I do

Monday, February 4, 2008

Some times warm light is ruined if we WB too well

The above image with White Balance

The above image is
As captured without White Balance

Thursday, January 31, 2008

A Short Cut for switching Modules in LightRoom

Hold down Ctrl+Alt (Windows) or Command+Option (Mac OS) and press a number between 1 and 5 to switch to any of the five modules.


Monday, January 28, 2008

I just posted this on the Studio Blog.......

I don't cross post (post same thing on more than one Blog) very often
but decided to share another image of Marlie

Again this image just like the prior two posted here a few weeks ago,
this image was created with one Main light located far to our left (her right)
and much closer to her than I normally would place my Main light.

While the Main was at f 5.6 and 1/60th of a second,
there was very little Fill (measured at f 2.8 at 1/20th of a second) about Three stops difference between the Main and the Fill

I share the shutter speeds here because this was done with a continuous light source Not flash.
Camera was Canon 5D with a 24 - 70mm lens set at 45 mm focal length

Light was a WestCott SpiderLite with 5 Halogen Bulbs

Here's the image............

Friday, January 25, 2008

check out ppa mags Profit center !!!!!!

with such things as.........................

Pricing Portrait & Wedding Photography, part 1

Pricing considerations for portrait and wedding photographers.

The task of pricing photography is greatly simplified when you understand the relationship between what it costs to do business and how much to charge in order to be profitable..

An excellent view point !

Click here to read the whole article

a great article on

There are many kewel topics on Professional Photographer dot com
one is a 16 pages pdf file on Presentation and Packaging
click here to go right to it
or here to go to


Sunday, January 20, 2008

A couple of images with my new light & Light Box

above image converted to B&W with one of my tailored LR Presets

above image
WB adjusted in LR to the WB of an Expo Disc captured during the session

above image
As shot with no WB adjustment

The above image was captured with my new TD5 SpiderLight from WestCott
Exposure Data ISO 500 1/50 at f 3.5