Archive for May, 2009


Wednesday, May 27th, 2009

A kick in the donuts

Wednesday, May 27th, 2009

There’s a new Creative Lube podcast available on iTunes or you can get it here. This one is longer than usual and is a bit of a rant about you making your art.

Other creative thinking

Tuesday, May 26th, 2009

Lots of people have seen Harlan Ellison’s rant about paying for creative work (here, in case you’ve somehow missed it). Well, yesterday I was surfing about the TV and came in on the middle of a documentary about Mr. Ellison called Dreams with Sharp Teeth (on Sundance–here are some clips). I only saw about the last half, but I have set my DVR to record it when it repeats (Thurs. at 10 AM, at least here on the West Coast). I encourage you to watch it as well.

Ellison is at times a total ass (which he completely cops to) but he is also so very right in many of his ideas about creativity. Not just its valuation and the need to actually pay for all the creative you use (music, words, images, etc.), but also about the creative process itself. Even if you loathe his attitude, there is a lot to be gleaned from this film.

Creatives should expose themselves to other creatives as much as possible, I think. Different disciplines can foster new ways of thinking within your own. And seeing someone with the chutzpah of Mr. Ellison can help all of us to stand up a little taller and fight a little harder–which we all need to do in this creative/business environment.

Art of Photography show

Thursday, May 21st, 2009

Have you thought about submitting to this? It’s here in San Diego, but gets submissions from all over the world.

If you make it, we could meet! Not that I’m part of the prize, but if you came here for the opening, I’d love to get to know any of you in person. I’m sure we could find a bar someplace…


Fun and work

Wednesday, May 20th, 2009

Lots of self-employed people are lousy about taking time off, particularly when work is scarce. There is this overwhelming fear that you will miss potential income if you take a couple of days off.

Truth is, you might. Or you might not. Or you will, but you will get MORE out of taking the personal time and reconnecting with your spouse/partner/family/self. Money isn’t everything. But, of course, it is important.

So how to balance the two? The key word is balance. If you are not taking any time for yourself, time off, away from work and cell and email, etc., clearly that is not balance. If you are taking every other day off, I think most people would agree that’s too much the other way.

The French get 30 days off a year, guaranteed. I think that’s great, but probably unreasonable for Americans. How about half that? 15 days. That’s three weeks (5 working days per week). That seems reasonable, especially if you split it up. Take at least one week entirely off a year–that needs to be a non-negotiable written-in-stone company policy. Then take a day off here and there throughout the rest of the year.

You will find that if you stick to this plan, you will be more productive during your working time. And, when you come back from time off, your brain is refreshed so your creative work is better.

Now about the missed gigs–if you miss a call from a client, they will not hate you and never call you again…not unless they are total jerks. You should dump clients who think and treat you that way so that is no loss. The other clients will be there when you get back. Often, the project they called about will still need to be done when you get back, so you haven’t lost anything but the stress of sitting around waiting for the phone to ring! And you can use an impending vacation to connect with your regular clients who might be thinking about working with you–let them know ahead of time that you will be unavailable on certain dates so that they can schedule their shoots appropriately.

Truth is, most of the time you will not lose any work by taking a vacation. And the payoff for your health and creative spirit is of very great value to your business.


Monday, May 18th, 2009

After making an enormous stink about how Woody Allen had ruined his own image and so their use (without permission) couldn’t have harmed it, American Apparel has agreed to a hefty settlement. $5 million.

What have we learned from this kids? Don’t steal, misappropriate, or assume that something is in the public domain. Also, respect others’ personal images as well as their creative products.

Facebook page

Friday, May 15th, 2009

Catching up with the Social Media world, here’s another way to stay in touch. I hope we can start dialogues on the discussion page too.

Burns Auto Parts–Consultants’s Facebook Page
Burns Auto Parts--Consultants's Facebook Page
Promote Your Page Too

Busy photolicious week

Thursday, May 14th, 2009

After getting through my extremely academically heavy Monday and Tuesday, yesterday I had the pleasure of going to an APA-SD event about SEO and social marketing for photographers. This evening I get to see Judy Herrmann at ASMP-SD–woo hoo! And ASMP posted the last of my SB2 videos on their blog.

After being so deeply in the books for months and months, it’s been great to connect with people again and to get my head more firmly in the photo realm.

In the future I plan on being more active here on this blog, as well as in the community. I’ve missed being a full part of the dialogue and am happy to be back in it more.

IP Piracy in Latin America

Tuesday, May 12th, 2009

This guy is a professor at the law school I attend. I haven’t had a class with him yet, but I have had a few conversations with him. He’s terribly smart, funny, and rather like the Energizer Bunny.

What I didn’t know about him was his past life…as a photographer. Now I have to seek him out. Maybe I can take an independent study course with him focusing on photo IP. Hmmm…

Anyway, the article is about his work fighting IP piracy in Latin America. Lots of interesting facts, like the funding of terrorists via IP rip-offs.

So protect your IP and help defend liberty and democracy in a much more important way than you might ever have thought!

Adding video

Monday, May 11th, 2009

Heather Morton has a fabulous interview with Sylvain Dumais which all of you need to read. Don’t just look at the work (though that is worth seeing), but rather pay attention to what he is saying about the convergence of still and motion imagery.

He may be very right when he says that, in a few years, still-only photographers will be rare and struggling.

This is not a bad thing unless you choose to make it so. Your vision can transcend the still medium into motion, I’m betting. At the very least, exploring the possibilities will open up your mind to new ways of thinking creatively. The technology is not anywhere near as daunting as in the past.

If anything, the traditional technical videographers are going to be more threatened in this new world. Like when digital transformed still photography, the technicians without vision will be pushed out by the new breed who produce vision-based work.

I’m looking forward to seeing what a lot of you produce. This is an exciting time.