Merry Christmas!

Wishing everyone, everywhere, the Merriest of Christmases!

We are of to Mexico to work on a documentary project from the 26th till the 30th. So have a pleasant week and we’ll be back in the new year!

Best to you all!

Portfolio Printing

We are printing out a couple of new lifestyle portfolios this week. All of our portfolios are 11×17 landscape format and we use our favorite paper (Hahnemuhle). We have been printing on the Epson R2400 since the day they came out and really love the quality of the output. We usually put about 25-30 images in a portfolio with some business cards and promotional leave behinds in the back of the books. We are up to 14 portfolios right now which seems absolutely crazy given that so many people are content to look at web sites in lieu of traditional portfolios. But for some reason we always seem to run out! I remember when 4 portfolios was more than sufficient.

A Day of Corporate Portraits

Today we are off to shoot corporate portraits of all of the board members and executive staff of Wescom Credit Union. They are a Credit Union based here in Pasadena and have branches across Los Angeles County, Orange County, San Diego County and Ventura County.

We have been doing their annual reports for over a decade now and every time this year the board gets together for the holidays so it is the perfect time to get fresh portraits of everyone. There are enough of them that we do a two camera set-up and really crank them through.

In January and February we’ll shoot all of the lifestyle shots that go in the main body of the annual report. They usually consist of branches across the southland, as well as customers and employees. But for this rainy day in Pasadena we will be warm and dry at the Wescom headquarters shooting a ton of portraits.

Paper Chase Printing

Since we are so happy with all of the work they have done for us over the last year we are adding Paper Chase Printing to our Links. ->>>
We can highly recommend them. Especially for Photographers in Los Angeles who are looking to get good quality promotions printed at a very good price.

Thanks Paper Chase!

“Leave Behinds”

We just picked up some new “Leave Behinds” today. Little 5×7 Promotional Pieces that we put in the back of the portfolios for people to grab after they have looked at the book. Something that has a photo and all of our contact info on it.

Till now we had been using promo pieces that our management company (Lighthouse Imaging Group) had been printing out as mailers. But with entirely new portfolios the imagery on the old promos just didn’t represent what was in the books.

Our fabulous designer Annie Consoletti put this together for us and we had it printed over at Paper Chase Printing. They have been printing promos for Los Angeles Photographers for years, but I have only recently started to use them. I had always been very skeptical of their quality but have been quite pleased with the 4 or 5 projects I have dome with them so far. Also their pricing is great!

LA Photographer Promo - Dana Hursey Photography

If You Stick Around Long Enough, Someone Is Bound To Imitate You..

So I am heading into my 20th year in business. For the last 10, I have used a logo and logotype designed by Annie Consoletti (a great graphic designer!).

Here it is:
Los Angeles Photographer - Dana Hursey - Logo

About a month ago Annie called me and pointed me to a website of a guy who does photography, and branding, and web sites, and design, and….

But she was calling specifically about his photography page. He has a web site and for the branding and web design the site is consistent, but when you click on photography the design is different. She had been to the site several months ago, but in the last month, it had changed. While the design of the site is neither here-nor-there, Annie was a little miffed about the new logotype on the site.

Here it is:
California Photographers Copy of DHP Logotype

Granted, we don’t own a copyright on the design and certainly they are not exactly the same, but is is amusing to see the similarity. (Same Font, no spacing between words, alternating bold / light font to separate words ,exaggerated letter spacing.) And one does have to acknowledge that unintentional emulation happens all the time. We sent off a letter to the photographer/designer sharing with him that several people had mentioned the “similarity” to our branding, just as an fyi more than anything, but received no acknowledgement whatsoever.

So again you just have to laugh and appreciate the old adage “Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery”.

Blog Fix & Upgrade

We did an upgrade to the blog yesterday. Visually you should not notice any difference. But hopefully a nagging bug has been eliminated. In the past when people posted comments, as they clicked the submit (“Say It’) button, they would get an error message, despite the fact that the comment was posted just fine. This would quite often lead them to resubmit the comment a second time and would consequently lead to two copies of the same comment on articles. Well with the upgrade yesterday, it looks as if that little bug has been fixed. So comment away and know that we appreciate your input!

Professional Photographer’s Equipment

A question we get asked a fair amount is what kind of equipment do we have in our arsenal…
So we thought we’d put a list together that highlights the major stuff….

Small Format Digital Camera Systems

2 – Canon EOS 1 Ds Mk II – 16Megapixel Digital Cameras
Canon 35mm-350mm L Series Zoom Lens
Canon 85mm L Series Lens
Canon 16mm-35mm Zoom Lens
Canon 100mm Macro Lens
Canon 90mm Tilt Shift Lens
Canon 65mm 1x-5x Macro Lens

Lensbaby 2.0 – Soft Focus Lens

Leica M8 – 10 Megapixel Digital Camera
Leica 35mm Lens

Medium Format Digital Camera Systems

Hasselblad H3D-39II – 39 Megapixel Digital Camera
Hasselblad 80mm Lens
Hasselblad120mm Macro Lens
Hasselblad 28mm Wide Angle Lens
Hasselblad 50mm-110mm Zoom Lens

Large Format Film Camera Systems

4×5 / 5×7 Super Cambo View Camera
210mm Schneider Lens
121mm Schneider Super Angulon Lens
300mm Schneider Lens

Lighting Systems

2 – Profoto D4 Digital Strobe Packs (2400ws)
6 – Profoto Accute2/D4 Strobe Heads
Profoto Acute2 / D4 Ring Light
Profoto StickLight
Various Reflectors, Grids, SoftBoxes, Umbrellas, and Light Modifiers

Lumedyne 800ws Portable Strobe System

Canon Speedlite
Canon Ringlite

Sekonic L-358 Flash Meter

Pocket Wizard Radio Slave/Sync System


Foba Studio Stand
Gitzo Carbon Fiber Tripod
Manfrotto Monopod
Grip Kits, Expendables, etc.

Color Calibrated Computer Systems

Apple Mac Pro Computer- Quad Core 3GHz – 3TB HD – 8GB RAM – Dual Optical Drives
Apple 30″ Cinema Display
Apple G5 Computer – Dual 2GHz – .5TB HD – 2GB RAM – Optical Drive (Portable)
Apple 23″ Cinema Display (Portable)
Apple 15″ MacBook Pro 2.0GHz 2GB RAM Laptop (Location Computer)
2 – iMac 20″ Desktop Computers
3TB LaCie/G-Raid Back-up Disk Array
Imacon Flextight 848 Hi-End Film Scanner
Epson R2400 Printer (13″ wide)
Epson Pro7800 Printer (24″ wide)
Final Cut Pro Edit Bay w/ Beta SP, DV, VHS, DVD, Sony RGB Video Monitor, Sound Board, AJA Kona Board, After Effects Pro Bundle + more

This along with cases to hold everything and lots of little items in our grip cases, like extension cords, tools, tape, filters, batteries, make up the bulk of what we keep on hand. And of course we then rent additional equipment as needed by any specific job.

Linked In

Here is a quick little post to steer you to a networking web site called Linked In. A friend of mine invited me to join and as a result I was “found” by a creative director that I had once gone to school with. I consequently started to get in touch with others that were members and found that it is just a great and easy way to network.

Linked In is not industry specific and is a great place to connect with folks from all walks of business!

Check it out and link to me!

Happy Holidays!!

As we head once again into the holiday season, we are astounded at how fast another year has passed us by. We want to thank everyone who has been a part of making 2007 our best year ever. We are filled with anticipation about heading into what looks to be an even more exciting year! But before we rush into 2008, we want to stop, reflect, and appreciate where we are at and all that we have.

May your holidays be truly joyful, peaceful, relaxing, filled with love, laughter, friends, family, and all that you hold dear!
Image by Los Angeles Photographer Dana Hursey

Wedding Photographers

I have to say I really have to hand it to Wedding Photographers. I have done a hand-full of weddings (many years ago) and vowed never to do one again. So far so good! My brother got married back in September and although I was not the wedding photographer, I did bring my Leica to take a few casual shots. It was much easier and much more enjoyable to do, knowing that I was not the one responsible for getting “the shot”!

I was only recently able to sit down and go through what I shot and forward them off to my brother & sister-in-law. Although I must admit that I had immediately downloaded them right after the wedding and with a quick glance was not very thrilled with what I saw so.. going through them was not a high priority as I really didn’t think there was much there to be had.

I was pleasantly surprised once I did sit down with them, not because there was anything spectacular, but once I started to play with the raw images in Lightroom a bit there were a few that weren’t so bad.

It turns out that although I saw a few selects from the “official” photographer and thought they were quite stunning, those few images were evidently the cream of the crop. There were a few missed shots and some stuff that apparently wasn’t so great. I AM SO GLAD IT WAS NOT ME! Again reinforcing my desire to never do that again!

So to those of you who are out there shooting those weddings (and doing them well) .. Kudos To You!
Image by Los Angeles Photographer Dana Hursey
(one of my shots)

Pocket Wizards

Everyone knows about Pocket Wizards..Right? Well evidently not. I ran into another photographer a few days ago who was still using sync cords to trigger his strobe units. So I thought I would do a quick post on them to to share the joy with anyone out there who is not yet aware of these little guys.

Pocket Wizards are Radio Slaves/Syncs. They trigger your strobe units via radio signals rather than hard wiring your camera to the strobe packs via a sync cord. They allow for virtually infinite mobility and a lot less tripping over cords in the studio or on location. The transmitter will fit in any hot shoe or connect via pc cable. The receivers sit on the pack and connect via whatever proprietary cable your pack uses. Or as in the case of our Profoto D4 Strobe Packs, the receiver is built into the pack!

Also if you use Sekonic Light Meters they also have the capability of transmitting signals and can fire your strobes wirelessly as well!

As far as our strobe system is concerned we are completely wireless. Which is a huge benefit!!!

Help With Your Photography Career

In visiting the Adbase web site yesterday, I noticed that they were featuring a “success story” about a friend / colleague / mentor of mine – Rhoni Epstein. Consequently I thought it would be a great idea to pass her info along. Rhoni and her business partner Susan Baraz have a consulting business for Photographers called PhotoTherapy. I have worked with them in the past and sent both assistant and colleague their way. Whatever level you are at, they work with you to take your career to the next level. If you are looking for inspiration or a much needed kick in the butt… these are the ladies that can give it to you! We’re adding them to out link list! >>>

Finding Cold Call Contacts

The most common question I get when talking about doing cold calls is; “Where does one find the people to call?” This is actually an easy question to answer.

There are a variety of sources out there to find this information. Most of them require some sort of investment in the form of a subscription, but most are well worth it!

Here are a few that I have used:

The Workbook Phone Book
Although the basic services are free, you really need to pay the $75 annual subscription in order to get the full benefit of this directory. They list all of the Ad Agencies, Design Firms, Magazines, ect. with names, phone #’s, e mails and addresses and you can search by a variety of criteria. This is the source we currently use. Although I must say their server is painfully slow.

Another good one is AdBase
They have a tiered pricing structure but this is an extremely good resource!
If I were doing my own cold calling, this would be the one I would use.

Some others to consider are:
Agency Access

Feel free to share any others that you are aware of but any of these will give you more than enough phone #’s to keep your fingers busy!!