LOUPEDECK PLUS RAISES THE BAR ON LIGHTROOM WORKFLOW | TECH TUESDAY

Loupedeck Plus Raises the Bar on Lightroom Workflow | Tech Tuesday

When there’s a catalog of 3,000 photographs to be processed, being able to say something like “Loupedeck Plus raises the bar on Lightroom workflow” can be a game-changer. Even if it’s just a fraction of a second saved using a new tool and more refined workflow, this can add up to hours and hours of time saved over the course of a season. Especially when the tool, Loupedeck + in this case, works on all sides of the process. Early-in, Loupedeck + DOES seem that it WILL be a game-changer.Loupedeck Plus Raises the Bar on Lightroom WorkflowLike magic, Loupedeck + knows which of Lightroom’s module you’re working in. Its dials work intuitively and can have unique roles within each module.

I’m writing this post with under an hour’s experience with this editing console, and already am sold on its virtues. Yes, I have been a fan of my previous editing key setup, Palette. You can read about that at: Palette Gear For Post-processing Workflow. I still like the Palette keys, and the early very buggy Palette software has been improved greatly.

But I realize good ideas can be made greater, and such is the case with the Loupedeck + console. As a bonus, at $249USD, the Loupedeck investment is very reasonable. It costs less than the Palette system did when I initially purchased that system in 2015… by $50. That’s for the mid-scale Palette system I was using. It would be much less than a Palette system that would have all the features of the Loupedeck +.  Here’s the good thing: we now have even more choices. For sure, the Palette system allows more physical reconfiguration than does Loupedeck. For me, I am certain that the placement of each of the knobs I most use will become totally intuitive.

Unpacking The Loupedeck Plus

When the Loupedeck Plus arrived the quality of what’s inside the box was reflected by the really high-quality packaging. That of course doesn’t necessarily mean the hardware inside is going to be of equally-high quality. But, I can say in this case that it IS, and then some.

Loupedeck Plus Essential Features

After unpacking, there’s a simple quick-start ‘essential features’ overview. Download the User Guide (i’m going to recommend printing it now!) and the Loupedeck software (Mac and Windows). You’ll be forewarned to not plug in the USB cable until the Loupedeck software has been installed. A quick note: The user guide says setting up is as easy as 1-2-3. It lists these three steps: (1) Download the software, (2) Connect the USB, and (3) start editing!. My experience at (3) was that the Loupedeck was not responding. Rebooting, however, remedied this. So setting up, for me, was as easy as 1-2-3-4. Overall, very seamless and just a very few minutes to get to this point.

There are several user-programmable dials, knobs and pushbuttons. I immediately wanted to see what function was set for dial D2. I then wanted to program that dial to address “Noise Reduction”. A quick peek at page 17 sent me to > Lightroom > Help > Plug-in Extras > Update Develop Presets List. The rest was very intuitive.

Favorite Features of Loupedeck Plus

Already a favorite feature of mine are the simple four arrow keys in the lower right of the panel. In Library mode, navigating through in the grid view is very quick. I can sense substantial time savings already. Sure enough. these same keys and functions are on a standard keyboard. But, that keyboard’s not any longer in relative close proximity. Efficiency and ergonomics are all about having the frequently-used buttons, knobs, and dials in close reach. And, not too packed together. Loupedeck does this especially well. The large, smooth-running main control dial whisks through the grid or filmstrip at however fast you want to turn it.

There’s another cool thing I have found right away. Let’s say you’re culling in Library mode and come across an image you may want to pick as a keeper. That image, though would need some exposure adjustment. Turn the ‘exposure’ knob (others, too, if needed) on the Loupedeck. It responds exactly as would the associated controls while the Develop module, but Lightroom STAYS in Library mode. This is HUGE, as it saves having to step out into Develop and then back into Library to continue culling. I say this because I never adapted to using the Quick Develop modules in Library. I always preferred the more refined Develop module adjustments.

Loupedeck Plus Take-away

Loupedeck promises to have a plethora of useful features. Some of them, I suspect, are “hidden” and will manifest themselves over the course of time. I’m fortunate my photographer brother R.L.Caron (web site) in Florida has had his Loupedeck a couple of weeks longer than I have. Oh, and he’s a tech guru. I expect many of these tricks and tips will be contributed by him. So, stand by. Lots of great information will follow with future updates to this post.
loupedeck plus for lightroom

If you enjoyed this post, about how the Loupedeck Plus raises the bar on Lightroom workflow, please comment and share! Thank you!
Here’s the index to more Tech Tuesday topics of interest to photographers
This Tech Tuesday post is about how the Loupedeck Plus raises the bar on Lightroom workflow. Russ and Liz Caron, Maine wedding photographers, use Loupedeck Plus in their wedding photography business. Do you have questions, or recommendations for the Tech Tuesday series? Let us know in the comments! And don’t forget to share this post with your friends. Russell Caron is available for workshops, group instruction, or one-on-one mentoring. Call Russ at (207)233-4050, or email him at russ@wed-pix.com.
Tagged with: ,
Posted in Blog, Technical Tuesdays

SD/CF MEMORY CARD RATINGS AND SYMBOLS DEMYSTIFIED | TECH TUESDAY

SD/CF Memory Card Ratings and Symbols Demystified | Tech Tuesday

SD and CF memory card ratings and symbols demystified?! That looks and sounds complicated! But wait. Let’s take a look at what markings on my memory card are all about. It’s pretty simple, actually.

While at first glance this a really complex, the truth is that it all pretty much boils down to (besides the storage capacity [“size”] of the card) how fast the card will perform.
This article addresses only SD and CF card types, which are the vast majority of cards in use in digital cameras. For the sake of getting the basics out of the way, “SD” stands for Secure Digital for and “CF” is for Compact Flash. There are at least two other card types in less common uses, XQD and CFast (standing for CompactFast). Generally speaking, users of these more unique speciality cards are aware of their use and features. For more info on these, consult your favorite search engine.
SD card markings are more complicated than CF cards, so let’s get the harder part done first, shall we?

SD Cardsphoto of an SD card with guides to the card ratings and symbols by Maine wedding photographer Russell Caron at Russell Caron Wedding Photography

A. The card’s storage capacity. In megabytes (MB)

B. The read speed, in actual MB/s (megabytes per second).

It’s very important to note that the read speed is how fast your computer will read the data that has been written to your card and will always be faster than the write speed. With low-end cards, there can be a huge differential between read and write speed. With faster cards, the difference is still there but can far less.

C. SD card capacity classes, in capacity:

“SD” = up to 2GB
“SDHC” 4GB – 32GB
“SDXC” 32GB to 2TB.

D. Video speed class*

E. UHS Bus speed* I, II, or III. The higher the Roman numeral, the faster the card.

F. SD card speed classes:

C3 = slow card, low end use
C4-C6, middle speed
C10, highest performance.

G. UHS card write speed classes: (UHS = Ultra High Speed)

UHS1 class cards = minimum write speed of 10MB/s
UHS3 class cards = minimum write speed of 30MB/s

H. (You may or may not have this marking on your card)

The “600x” or “1000x” or ####x rating is based on the very outdated comparison of read speed to a 90’s vintage CD-ROM (if you even know what this is/was!). This number can, however, be used as a relative comparison, such as knowing/assuming (somewhat obviously) that a 1200x card can read twice as fast as a 600x card.
Some of these ratings are redundant, perhaps needlessly overly complicated, at least for the average user. For example, there are three different speed ratings, “Speed Class”, “UHS Speed Class”, and “Video Speed Class”. These ratings cover different ranges but as one increases the associated other ratings will increase, too. If you’re technically inclined, you can read more from the SD Association here.

As time goes on, it would not be surprising that new, even higher rating classes will be added to this list.

CF Cards

Photo of a SanDisk CF card with guides to the card ratings and symbols by Maine Wedding Photographer Russell Caron of Russell Caron Wedding Photography

A. The card’s storage capacity. In megabytes (MB)

B. The read speed, in actual MB/s (megabytes per second).

It’s very important to note that the read speed is how fast your computer will read the data that has been written to your card and will always be faster than the write speed.

C. UDMA (Ultra DMA mode).

The higher the rating here, the overall higher performance. These are ranges and will always coincide with read speed.

D. This is the minimum write speed of the card, in MB/second.

It’s important to note that this is the sustained write speed, vs. a peak speed.

E. (You may or may not have this marking on your card)

This is an increasingly outdated measure of read speed in MB/second, but it directly correlates to the “B” read speed rating. It’s purely mathematical: x/6.6666 = MB/s. Try it: on the pictured card, 1066/6.6666 = 160 which is indeed the same MB/s. It’s value may lie the most in comparing one card to another; a 1066x card will be twice as fast as, say, a 533x card. You get it.

If you enjoyed this post, about SD and CF memory card ratings and symbols, please comment and share! Thank you!
Here’s the index to more Technical Tuesdays topics of interest to photographers
This Tech Tuesday post is about demystifying SD and CF memory card ratings and symbols that Russ and Liz Caron, Maine wedding photographers, use in their wedding photography business. Do you have questions, or recommendations for the Tech Tuesday series? Let us know in the comments! And don’t forget to share this post with your friends. Russell Caron is available for workshops, group instruction, or one-on-one mentoring. Call Russ at (207)233-4050, or email him at russ@wed-pix.com.
Tagged with: , , ,
Posted in Blog, Technical Tuesdays

SPARKLER EXITS | 5 ESSENTIAL TIPS FOR SUCCESS | MAINE WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHERS

Sparkler Exits | 5 Essential Tips for Success | Maine Wedding Photographers

Sparkler send-offs, or sparkler exits, are a great way to involve your guests in some fun times, and get equally-great photos! A sparkler exit can create a fun, festive mood in photos. People find joy in being a part. And they just scream “celebration”!

We want to share with you are our five tips for creating great sparkler exits. These 5 essential sparkler exit tips will result in great photo ops. They’ll also result in great memories, fun, excitement, and perhaps most importantly, everyone’s safety!

5 Essential Tips for Beautiful Sparkler Exits:

Read more ›

Tagged with: ,
Posted in Blog

WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHY AWARD | MAINE WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHER | 1ST PLACE PPA NORTHEAST DISTRICT 2018

Wedding Photography Award | Maine Wedding Photographer | 1st Place PPA Northeast District 2018

When an unexpected package (that must’ve weighed about 5 pounds) arrives via FedEx, and it’s from the Professional Photographers of America…Hmmm? Notably, I know I didn’t order anything…?? As a result, like a kid on Christmas morning, I was beyond pleasantly surprised to open the box and find this beautiful wedge of a polished glass trophy. A wedding photography award for 1st place in the Northeast District 2018!!Wedding photography award for 1st place Northeast District 2018, to Maine wedding photographer Russell Caron of Russell Caron Wedding Photography

I didn’t even know to expect it!

A little background: I’ve long been an advocate of  taking part in professional image competition, for all the challenge and growth opportunities this affords. Having won the Maine Wedding Photographer of the Year award by the Maine Professional Photographers Association in 2016 and in 2017, I decided to focus my competition efforts the following year at the national level. In March, the Professional Photographers of America (PPA) held the Northeast District Competition. I was watching intently on line, and I did see my image being judged. (We’ll share the image later this year. At that time it will have run its course through the next step, the International Photographic Competition (IPC)).

I was super-pleased with the score the image received, as it assured the image will earn a “merit” in the IPC. That merit is the final one I need to have earn my Master Photographer degree from the PPA.

What wasn’t apparent to me then was that the image ended up as the highest scoring wedding image in all of the Northeast District Competition, thus earning that award (!). So, it was a most-wonderful, and most-unexpected surprise.

Here’s the list of award-winners that accompanied the trophy:

PPA photographic competition Northeast District category award winners

Go Maine!

Maine has some amazing photographers! First of all, congratulations to all the folks listed here, several of whom I know and that live in Maine. Consider for a moment the fact that the Northeast District includes several states. They are Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Rhode Island, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Ohio, and Michigan. There are 25 winning spots above, and 4 of them are from Maine. Loving crunching numbers, that converts to 16% of the winners coming from under 2% of the population! And this isn’t the first time I’ve seen numbers like that. Those numbers go to something like 36% of the winning slots come from under 4% of the population when you take Maine and New Hampshire together!

The Award Shelf

It’s a fine time to share what our award shelf looks like now! Of note, at least one of these awards is for a top wedding image taken by Liz, too!
Wedding photography award shelf of Maine wedding photographers at Russell Caron Wedding Photography

Maine Wedding Photography award winner, Russell Caron and his wife, partner, and co-shooter Liz Caron photograph weddings. Worth noting, that’s weddings only, from Boston to Bar Harbor and destinations worldwide. Experience a fun, easy going, professional wedding team, who capture all the important aspects of your wedding day. Let us tell you more about why choosing us as your wedding photographers could be one of the smartest choices you’ll make among your wedding day creatives. Contact us today for more information and our availability for your wedding!

 

Posted in Uncategorized

BAILEY ISLAND ENGAGEMENT SESSION | MAINE ENGAGEMENT PHOTOGRAPHERS

Bailey Island Engagement Session | Maine Engagement Photographers

We met with Trish and Darren a couple of weeks ago for their Bailey Island engagement session. We were waiting for the weather to warm up, which took longer than usual here in Maine this April.

Trish grew up in nearby Lisbon Falls, Maine, and remembers visiting Bailey Island as a child. Bailey island is a small village with restaurants, gift shop, and fishing fleets. It is a quintessential Maine fishing village. And a perfect place to have engagement photos taken. If you aren’t familiar with Bailey Island, it’s an island in Casco Bay that’s part of the town of Harpswell. We live in Brunswick so were more than happy with a Bailey Island engagement session! Plus, the bridge that connects Bailey Island to Harpswell is the world’s only cribstone bridge. How cool is that?

Trish and Darren, here from Boston, were fun and very easy to be around. We had a few laughs, as we always do, when we’re getting to know each other. While learning to work together as a precursor to wedding day isn’t mandatory, just an excellent idea. We’ve worked out the jitters, had fun, and set the tone for how we work well together. A win-win all around.

We’ll be meeting up with Trish and Darren very soon, at their Memorial Day weekend wedding at the Spruce Point Inn, in Boothbay. We can’t wait!!A couple kissing on the porch of the Bailey Island Library Hall, during their Bailey Island engagement sessionA couple walks along a beach on Bailey Island, Maine.Engagement session fun on Bailey Island, MaineLooking out over the water at Land's End, Bailey Island, Maine.A couple on the rocks at Land's End during a Bailey Island engagement sessionA high five after a job well done!

Comments and shares are awesome!! If you enjoyed Trish and Darren’s Bailey Island engagement session, please comment and/or share this post, thank you!!
Are you, or someone you know getting married in the next year? Maine wedding photographers, Russell and Liz Caron of Russell Caron Wedding Photography, would love to be part of your wedding day. While an engagement session isn’t required with our wedding photography packages, it gives us an opportunity to work together before your special day. The connection we build during an engagement session is invaluable, and a whole lot of fun! We had such a great time during our Kennebunkport Maine coast engagement session, imagine yourself doing the same! For more information, please contact us right away!
Tagged with: ,
Posted in Blog

CANON CAMERA CARE | CANON PROFESSIONAL SERVICES | MAINE WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHERS

Canon Camera Care | Canon Professional Services | Maine Wedding Photographers

Canon Camera care. As professional wedding photographers, we need to keep our cameras and gear in tip-top shape. We love how Canon Professional Services keeps us running! We have four complete camera systems, and triple that number of lenses. Eight flash units, terabytes worth of memory cards, two drone cameras, countless spare batteries, cases, stands, clamps… you get the idea!

This equipment is amazingly complex and even more amazingly rock-solid dependable. At the end of each season we are so appreciative of the tried-and-trusted service the Canon cameras and associated gear has given to us.Canon camera care with Canon Professional Services

 

Canon Professional Services Keep Our Maine Wedding Photography Business Running

A breakdown is usually our fault. We’re juggling equipment, shuffling it in and out of cases. Cameras and lenses swing at our sides, and can just as easily slam into a door frame if we’re in a hurry. I remember shooting a wedding in Italy once and being so taken with something I saw I swapped lenses on a camera body. Instead of the lens staying in my hand as I did this, however, it promptly smashed into the stone sidewalk. It still worked but needed some serious rehab upon returning home. Each year, dust can creep inside our cameras, even though they self-clean to a large extent. An annual clean, lube, and inspection is more than warranted for these ‘workhorses’. We leave our Canon camera care to the professionals!

Enter: Canon Professional Services (CPS). In our experience and opinion, no other manufacturer can even come close to this level of vital service. As a top-tier Platinum level member, we get to experience the best of the best service for camera repair available from any company, period.

Canon professional camera gear used by Maine professional photographers at Russell Caron Wedding Photography

 

Break something on a Sunday? Monday morning we place a call to CPS. Four minutes later in our inbox is a prepaid FedEx Express label. We keep the boxes from prior CPS shipments, and reusing these, in minutes we head to the FedEx dropbox. As early as Wednesday, or Thursday at the latest, that camera is at our doorstep at 8:45AM. All fixed, cleaned, lubricated, inspected, with a full diagnostic report including the all-important shutter count in hand. FedEx was paid for, with Platinum level coverage, both ways!

Canon camera gear packed by Canon CPS

Canon Professional Services Loaners

If, for any reason, that blazing turnaround time still leaves us without a needed piece of gear, CPS is FedEx Express shipping us a loaner of the same item to use, at no added cost, while the repair is completed. Someone was thinking of the end user here! Wow!

 

Canon Professional Services Equipment Evaluations

If all of this isn’t enough, Canon will loan us just about anything we wish to try out, in real life, on a real shoot. Wondering if that $14,000 200mm f/2 lens is all is made out to be? Is it really the next best thing, ever? We can find out without spending anything more than return shipping!

Please comment on our Canon camera care post, and share on social media!! Thank you 🙂

Maine Wedding Photographer, Russell Caron and his wife, partner, and co-shooter Liz Caron photograph weddings. And that’s weddings only, from Boston to Bar Harbor and destinations worldwide. Let us tell you more about why choosing us as your wedding photographers could be one of the very smartest choices you’ll make among your wedding day choices. Contact us today for more information and our availability for your wedding!
Tagged with: , , , ,
Posted in Blog