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Sunday, November 28, 2010

Six Simple Tips to Help Make Your Pet Shots Stand Out

Tip #1- Pet photography is about capturing the essence and the personality of an animal in a snapshot. To be successful at this you must try to depict a day of their life. Whats their most characteristic action? The best way of going about this is doing nothing. You must let the animal be themselves. That means, go to their level and visit their comfort zone. Use perspective and zoom to capture a degree of intimacy.

Tip #2- Be patient. The most rewarding images usually come after waiting for a long period of time. Not every minute is a good time for pet photography. Your pet may be napping, there could be bad lighting, etc. In that case,  I suggest going about your regular routine until you see an image worth capturing. But, you must still be aware of what your pet is doing if you want to still capture something that's "picture perfect."

Tip #3- Take lots of pictures. Try shots at different angles, magnification, perspectives, composition, etc. because you'll never know what shot will end up being the best. Also don't overlook details, framing very tightly can make for an interesting scene. Consider the usage of certain lens', depending on whether your aim is to compact the environment or open it you must shoot at different focal lengths.

Tip #4- Avoid using flash and other distracting equipment. The use of objects that are distressing to an animal can result in unnatural images.

Tip #5- Usually, action images make a photograph stand out. So go for an image where the pet is doing an activity that it usually does. If you need to, use toys and balls to start it off.

Tip #6- For truly colorful images of your pet you must get environmental. That means bring your pet to a place where they can interact. This leads to more fun, candid images.

...and one more for safe keeping...

Tip #7-  Don't be afraid to let your pet get close. The more intimate the animal is with your camera, the more intimate it is with your viewer.

For further reading visit:
Also if your interested in hiring a pet photographer or have questions on how to take your own, leave a comment or visit

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Black Friday- 5 Tips for Buying a Camera

The ever-changing and growing market for cameras can make shopping for one a tedious task. Here are some tips to help you narrow down the field:

Photograph copyright PhotoRepetto
1. How much are you willing to spend on a camera? How often are you going to use the camera? What are you using it for? (does it need to be durable? Do you need a water proof camera? Do you need rain protection equipment, etc.) What/who is going to be your subject? How serious are you, or the person your buying for about photography? Are you going to buy another camera when the next big thing comes out? Do you already have another camera? (What did you like about it? What didn't you like about it?) Are you planning to get another camera?
2. What features or capabilities do you want it to have? Is there a certain lens or built in flash that you would like to come with it? What memory cards are you going to use with it and does it work with the camera your considering? Is shutter lag an issue?
3. What brand do you like or was recommended to you? Is there a specific camera you heard a lot about? Are you looking for a point and shoot, a SLR, a DSLR, or a film camera?
4. Does the size of the camera matter? What about the weight?
5. How easy is the camera to use? Is the amount of control you have on the camera important?

I suggest you write down your answers to these questions on a piece of paper before you shop, and even do some online research before hand. Try to avoid electronic shops for camera shopping because they may have less options to buy and are less likely to be able to answer all your questions in comparison to a photography store. My recommendation: B&H

If your interested I currently use and highly recommend the Nikon D50 (pictured below). The Nikon D50 is one of my favorite cameras because its durable, its fast, and it produces high-quality images. If your interested you can purchase the camera or read about it by clicking below.
Nikon D50 6.1MP Digital SLR Camera with 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G ED AF-S DX Zoom Nikkor Lens

Fall Traditions: Cranberry Bogs

As the crisp cool fall air blows through the wetlands of New Jersey, it begins to paint the colorful fall foliage with it. In Chatsworth (a quaint little town and great escape from the city) this is their signal that summer is no more (at least until next year) and that it's time to start harvesting cranberries. The cranberry, one of the only fruits native to North America, was first farmed commercially in 1816. In preparation for the fall harvest, farmers grow the berries within a large dry ditch, one next to another, months before the cultivation. Then, as the fruits become ripe in the fall, the deep ditches are filled with water. To make the berries surface from under the water, large metal lawn mower-like devices spin their sharp rotors to shake the berries from their underwater vines. Workers then corral the berries into a small dense area using a yellow tube. To prep for the final step they place a conveyor belt device on the edge of the bog, and scoop the berries toward the belt, where they are delivered onto the top of awaiting trucks. To read more about the process of the cranberry bogs visit: Also if you're in the region, the Wading River is a fun boating trip through the stunted pine forests, that's great to do with your friends and family. Just be sure not to let your friends capsize in the "swift" waters.

Friday, November 26, 2010

21 Tips On Shooting for Clients

When it comes to preparation...
1. Make sure your client wants to do the project with you. Do what you need to do to convince them that you're right for them.
2. Go over your client's goals and wants. This means ask whether they want you to try different angles, locations, times, lenses, etc.
3. Make sure you have multiple ways of contacting your client.
4. Write a proposal/contract for your client so everything is clear for both of you.
5. Review/confirm everything the night before.

When it comes to equipment...
6. It's ideal if you have a tripod, flash and polarizing lens.
7. Always have a lens cleaner, lens covers/protectors, extra batteries and memory cards.
8. Bring all of your equipment on an assignment no matter what.
9. Prepare your equipment 24 hours in advance and have everything packed and ready to go at least 15 minutes in advance.

When it comes to the actual shoot...
10. Take as many pictures as you can. More images is something that can be fixed, less images is something that cannot.
11. Try different angles, lenses, lighting, etc.- your goal is to give your client options.
12. Be kind and courteous to your client, make conversation and do what they ask.
13. Make post processing as easy as you can you for yourself.
14. Immediately after the shoot, tell your client where and when they will be able to see/use the images.

When it comes to the time after the shoot...
15. Impress your clients and finalize their images quickly.
16. Before you edit an image, make a copy so you'll always have the original.
17. In post processing make sure all digital re-enhancements look realsitic.
18. Edit out the images that neither match what they want nor are artistic.
19. After the unneeded images are separated (never actually delete them) create a final copy for the client (whether its online or a physical CD) that matches what they asked for. Do they prefer more options? Do they only want the best of the best?
20. Ask your client if they need anything else. Do they want specific changes to a shot? Would they like another CD? Are they interested in seeing more shots? Are there any images that they would like to be printed for them?
21. Stay in contact with the client. Are they fully satisfied? Do they need you again?

Young Travel Photographer of the Year

Two of my entries, the four pictures from my Morocco and Guatemala portfolio, were chosen to go into the final round of this year's Young Photographer of the Year Award by a group of recognized photographic authorities. Out of over 25,000 entries I had two of my portfolios sent to the final judging round. For more information on the competition go to Here are my shortlisted images:




Thursday, November 25, 2010

The Battle of Fort Lee

A Revolutionary War era Fort Lee is nowadays hidden among apartment skyscrapers and the George Washington Bridge of New Jersey. Despite the constant changes of the neighborhoods that surround the old fort, on November 20th every year you can view a reenactment of the "turf war" of 1776. Hundreds of reenacters: British, Hessians, and Patriots bring along their muskets, bayonets, and cannons to fight over the two-story block house that's situated in the forests of the Palisades. Ironically, no battle ever occurred at the fort, but rather the patriots retreated from the thousands of invading troops of the British on that cold November. If you need to warm up, you should get there early for the chance to try some homemade British soup.

A Thanksgiving Ritual: Fox Hunting

On Thanksgiving Day millions of people congregate on the streets of Manhattan to watch Spongebob mop up the floors of Central Park West for the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade. But over at Peapack-Gladstone, New Jersey a more serene tradition occurs when an elite gathering of hundreds come together for an annual event that  started in the 1880's. The Essex Fox Hounds Organization has been keeping alive the fox hunting tradition ever since, organizing a unique spectacle every year. What happens is at the sound of a brass horn, dozens of fox hounds sprint out of their kennels and into the countryside, accompanied by a fleet of horseback riders dressed in colorful suits and top hats. The fox hounds run in erratic directions, in pursuit of foxes they may come across (but don't worry no fox is actually harmed), while the horseback riders try to manage the hounds. Spectators have the option of setting up shop at the starting point (where people often tailgate and socialize), or "road whipping," the process of tracking the hounds using their car. Although "road whipping" is like trying to find a needle in a hay stack, if you stumble across the group you're in for an amazing spectacle. If you're interested in fox hunting you can read more here:

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Biography and Contact Information

Chase Guttman is a talented and passionate, award-winning photographer having shot everything from landscapes to wildlife to portraits and events all around the world. Chase Guttman is also an affordable NYC assignment photographer, ready to fulfill your photographic wishes with his distinct style and attention to detail. He also runs this popular photography tips and guide blog, with weekly insights into photography that helps everyone from amateurs to pros better their photographic skill. Visit us at our website:

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