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Two Handy Dandy Upgrades

I've made some upgrades to my gear, and I have to say, it's been quite nice. Although not a necessity for sessions, it's helped me in terms of workflow-- especially in review of composition, lighting, and just basic review with model/client.

1. TetherTools

I debated about getting the TetherTools cable probably for a good two years. Past me wasn't really focused on photography then, so it didn't make a lot of practical sense to buy something that I wouldn't get maximum use. Well, I'm definitely relying on it more. A recent example is a shoot that I did with my sister, Cat in promotion of her t-shirts (and other gear). As I snapped away, the images would upload to my laptop so she could give feedback about certain poses, or how the t-shirt was fitted on the model, etc.

Behind-the-scenes image of Cat Vo T-shirt shoot with Kamryn, represented by Launch Models

The only (small) negative feedback is that sometimes the instant review could prove to be a distraction, especially if the monitor is angled towards the model. I don't blame them for wanting to see how they look, that's only natural. Anyway, the easy fix is to just turn it slightly away from the model so that they can focus on being in the moment.

2. SmartShooter 3

My second item is the tethering software, SmartShooter 3. I'll have to explain a bit why I paid for this, even though I have Adobe Lightroom. LR is great for cataloging, producing mass changes to multiple images, and also has tethering capabilities. I discovered (after buying the TetherTools cable) that FOR SOME REASON the images would save directly to my laptop, but did not exist on my camera's two SD cards. I was like, HOL' UP.

I hit the internet and discovered this was the norm. Nikon and Adobe Lightroom just don't work well together when it comes to tethering. This doesn't seem like a huge issue, but I have a history of laptop failures and I didn't want to take my chances of my images existing solely on my laptop, and not on my camera's SD cards. And so, I paid for the software to also make use of the TetherTools cable.

And if you're wondering about the discrepancy between the Dell and Mac laptop in the above images... remember how I told you about how I have a history with laptop failures? Well, I had to take my laptop in to the Geek Squad because bad tech stuff was happening to my poor Dell, and so I had to hijack my sister's Mac for a test shoot that was already scheduled in October.

The two items are good investments that I thought a long time about, especially with the cost of starting a business. I'm not the most tech-savvy individual, and so it's been quite a process discerning which items are worthy investments, and not just novelty. I would love to dedicate a separate post to the Flashpoint XPLOR 6000, which has also been a wonderful addition to my gear. My near-future goal is to buy better lenses, but that's definitely a lot more $$$ in comparison. So, those big ticket items will have to wait until I get me a big ticket client.

This is most likely my last post for 2018, since the holidays tend to get a little hectic. But oh, how I want to talk about my shoot with Christian! I've already shared some images on social media. I'll make that my first post of 2019.

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