PHOTOSHACK.COM: Blog en-us PHOTOGRAPHY(C)1993-2022 VIN WEATHERMON, PHOTOSHACK.COM (PHOTOSHACK.COM) Sun, 06 Nov 2022 22:48:00 GMT Sun, 06 Nov 2022 22:48:00 GMT PHOTOSHACK.COM: Blog 80 120 Back Alley and Santa Ana

I had to restore images from a hard drive that failed, and as I was looking things over I found this in my archives....

]]> (PHOTOSHACK.COM) landscape street street photography Sun, 06 Nov 2022 22:44:39 GMT
My Day Job has me going and that new S22 Ultra On top of having a serious "anterior cervical diskectomy with fusion" (neckbones fused together with plate and screws) I have been really bombed with work at the "IT related employment".  The days start before the sun is up and end when the sun goes down.  It is mentally exhausting, and I am depleted of photography talent until the weekends.  And with the neckbrace on full time I am not supposed to drive or do physical jarring activity.  I get that blasted pain in the neck off November 1st!!

I finally gave in and bought an upgrade from my Samsung Galaxy S9+, the new S22 Ultra.  I am not really seeing the feature, battery life, speed all that much of an improvement, but it is bigger and easier to look gorgeous.

Not yet getting the hang of the camera combos of three lenses but I look forward to digging into that some day.  I did note that they smartly made the RAW file and JPG combo available in "auto" mode.  The few macros I have taken were good but I did struggle with some of the focus.  The default settings are too saturated to my eye, but when you have the RAW file needn't worry.  The stylus is neat, but a bit hard to get out of its little missile silo at the bottom, mainly due to the very thin case I have over the phone.  It's white so I can see it in my darkened cave.

I have not bought any new camera gear, nor studio lighting/modifiers.  I am sure all that has evolved in the past few years with amazing LED panels and wild gadgetry.  That too takes time and money to burn so to say...let me know what you're doing now with your photography!



]]> (PHOTOSHACK.COM) galaxy s22 ultra neck photographer post-covid samsung surgery Fri, 21 Oct 2022 00:25:06 GMT
Do good photographs and passion for creating them make a living? I am like the countless thousands of passionate artistic people who loved creating imagery, loved getting the feedback for images that people enjoy, and it seems like that would always be a facet of my "self".

With the downturn of the photography market, pandemic, and now post pandemic recession, I am no longer as passionate about photography as I used to be.  Before all this, I would always have a decent camera within reach, wherever I went.  I was experimental when there weren't paying gigs, looking for images that would help get me in front of paying clients who loved the work I was producing.  Now, I don't go many places due to residual pandemic fears and the need to "work from home" at my day job in cybersecurity.  I may have a cellphone with me if I venture out, but I've not been to the great outdoors, Asia or Europe to take those wonderful travel photos I dreamt I'd be taking.

Once in awhile I break out my Leica Q2 and charge the forever depleted battery and then find myself trying to remember which buttons did what function (being a Canon guy for so long, it was not "by feel" like it was with my 5D MKIII or earlier models.) I feel a bit clumsy as I try to manually adjust ISO/shutter/aperture thru the menu...and then think " I no longer as good as I used to be??"   

I believe you have to practice, have your finger on the shutter every single day or you lose the natural part of being a photographer, making the camera settings adjustment almost by muscle memory.  

I fear if I don't get back to that state again, I may lose my passion for the work altogether.  I never thought I'd be THAT person.  I've always associated my love for that craft as being part of my persona....have I lost that?  I hope not, but then again it seems tough to justify all the hardware and Mac wants to be fed, but yet she hasn't been doing much retouching in the past 3 years.


]]> (PHOTOSHACK.COM) loss of faith pandemic passion self-awareness Fri, 12 Aug 2022 19:52:23 GMT
Political photography in a grueling 4 years New York Times - Doug Mills

I have done virtually zero portrait work in the past year, and I cannot imagine the stress level of being this photographer.

More Access, More Anxiety: The Job of Photographing Trump

In an interview, Doug Mills, a Times photographer in the Washington bureau, reflects on a relentless four years.



]]> (PHOTOSHACK.COM) photojournalism trump Sun, 24 Apr 2022 18:31:56 GMT
Reviving myself I have had a pretty "low photography" few years with the closure of my last studio location, and then "Covid" lockdowns.  While I was fortunate to have the day job to keep the bills paid, I was not in the mindset to "keep plugging away at photography".  I no longer wished to buy gear, backgrounds or lighting.  I no had the space to work on a variation of studio lighting/looks setup to test concepts, or bring aspiring actors and models to do portfolio work or "for art's sake".

I really wish I knew what would revive my photographic talents, to make me want to have that camera ready, to keep my love alive.

Has this happened to you?  And where you successful with your revival?

]]> (PHOTOSHACK.COM) photography self-help spirit support Sun, 24 Apr 2022 18:29:12 GMT
Well I have been what? Well my last post came at a time when I'd finally realized that my studio was failing financially.  A year later I had closed my doors.  

Here's a shot of the studio "grand opening a year later."  I miss that space and the old charm.  But I'm going to do artistic photography again I swear. PIC_20181004_165608843PIC_20181004_165608843

]]> (PHOTOSHACK.COM) Sun, 16 Jan 2022 23:36:09 GMT
Musings for today: the value of photography Having been a photographer hobbyist, freelancer, semi-professional and professional over the span of 40 years, I've come to confront a few realities.  I began my business underfunded in terms of cash and productive time.

1. It is investment in marketing and sales that matter overwhelmingly in the business, and that must have a 3 year minimum to succeed; thus cash or credit reserve must be 3 years operating costs including outside sales and marketing.   In the case of a small studio trying for the high end of the spectrum ($2000-$8000 sale) that means planning for a studio that costs $2500 per month to operate is $100k for 3 yrs, the staffing, sales/marketing, creatives, web marketing, PR, exhibition costs, etc. would be approximately $325k per year, so $975k for 3 years should have been my minimum investment.   

2. While being completely solo has its advantages, solo whilst being full time employed elsewhere has huge disadvantages; you can't meet new prospects while you are presenting to a room full of IT people.   Being engaged with a busy IT department doing big things keeps the living expenses paid at the expense of my most productive window of time on a daily basis (for me, 7-noon).  Organizing and selling a portrait session after a 10 hour day of IT is tough.  Really tough if you aren't a natural sales person.   And then, there's the actual photography, the thing I love to do...also done after an often grueling day.

Despite the shortcomings of cash and time, I still took a stab at it again, and have lost it all.   

What have I learned?  People with money can make money, and the rest of us work for them.  I just need one good lotto hit.


]]> (PHOTOSHACK.COM) Sun, 04 Nov 2018 02:54:56 GMT
Tooting My Own Horn Ok, maybe more like a sales broadcast, but I am excited by the positive reactions from my friends who've seen my first art piece, the portrait of Kirstin Ann! I can't wait to see how Kirstin likes it:-) I have a few more sessions to do, and then I'm ready to preview her with the rest of the world.  In the coming weeks I'll announce when we will have a mixer party and you can check out the portrait yourselves.  I've heard wine is good for salesmanship...or something....

The thing to know about this art piece is that you need to see it firsthand to get the "depth" of the image.  Digital photos don't cut it!


vin VINW0311-Edit-EditVINW0311-Edit-Edit




]]> (PHOTOSHACK.COM) Sat, 28 Jan 2017 04:08:09 GMT
Introducing: Renaissance Masterpiece Portraits by Vin Weathermon Vin Weathermon is proud to announce his highest quality artistic wall portrait, the Renaissance Masterpiece!  These fine art wall portraits are evocative of a time where painters captured the essence of their dignified subjects wearing their finest clothes, simply and beautifully.  Every detail is meticulously refined and beautified, with genuine oil brushed highlights creating realism and depth of a photograph, with the richness of a painting.

The whole experience is unique.   The portrait is usually a single person for the most dramatic effect, although more people can be included.   Formal wear is required to make this portrait, and hair and makeup for women/girls is provided. Optionally, we can provide formal wear.  

After the makeup session, your creation session will capture your most engaging and dramatic features.  These are not typically "smiling" portraits, but rather you are looking like you might just know a secret or two.

We hope you enjoy the Renaissance Masterpiece portrait for generations to come.

]]> (PHOTOSHACK.COM) photography portrait vin weathermon Mon, 12 Dec 2016 06:48:25 GMT
Sony RX100 MK IV Review

Bought the beautiful Sony RX100 MK IV.


Tried it out, enjoyed the results, but returned it today thanks to Focus Camera's return policy through Amazon.

I didn't get to play with the 4k video because I didn't have a fast enough video card but I'm sure it was fantastic.


  • Quality feel- this think feels substantial and has a beautiful finish that owners of the MK II, III would recognize. It felt like a quality piece of machined metal. Buttons were well located, and easy to understand.
  • Built-in flash in Auto - worked perfectly every time. Great skin tones with no fuss. Family photos? Easy peasy.
  • Small. I mean stick it in your pocket small. This camera could fit in my shirt pocket, albeit a bit heavy.
  • Fantastic low light images- 6400 was gorgeous. Didn't push too much in my testing, but I could see grain without nasty color shifting.
  • Fast - shot quite a bit at f2.8 and had lovely sharp areas with nice bokeh.
  • Good 24-70 zoom range; a pretty good walk about lens and it is a Zeiss, nice and sharp.
  • Excellent EVF, especially with the focus peaking and thin DOF.
  • DMF focus ring; in manual mode, the little ring around the lens was a focus ring (had to enable in the menu.) Super cool to dial in focus, and with movies and focus peaking it was killer.
  • 1080P video - was beautiful and the shake reduction made for smooth handheld video. I didn't play around with this much, but Sony makes pro video so this thing was better than I needed.
  • Selfie mode - ok I was not supposed to love this but I did. Very functional to flip the little viewfinder all the way up and press the shutter for a countdown. Screw that iPhone!
  • Large 20mp files; plenty to crop with
  • Autofocus- didn't try any sporting kind of thing but for my purposes it seemed very snappy with few false focus issues


  • Expensive. For nearly $1k it really made me think of how I could spend a few bucks more and get another 5D Mk III body on ebay. I have lenses already. I know; you can't compare the functionality, but if this camera was sub $600 I wouldn't think much about it.
  • No Lightroom Support - this is annoying as hell when you have a good established workflow for RAW files. They provide Capture One Express for Sony, which is ok, but I want my catalog altogether and that means ARW files, "negatives" with jpgs. It will come eventually, but that date has not been established.
  • No touch screen - normally not a big deal for me, except for the need to key in a bunch of settings which sucks big time for lovely long SSID or email addresses. Seems like setup requires way too many (see apps.)
  • Apps are kludgy- at least on my copy, getting them installed was a trial, you need to have an account which to me is pure crap anyway. Then there was the failed webpages that retries eventually worked, but ugh... sell the damn camera with all the apps installed, and update them for free without accounts. No need to make it horrific. Had troubles getting the phone to see the camera with NFC; the smart remote worked much better but the kinda spastic menu to get there was annoying to me. Would rather have the mode right there to connect to a phone (perhaps assigning a button to an app would serve that purpose?)
  • No flash shoe - they removed it on this model, and it is something that I was actually thinking I'd never use but found I wanted that external flash for macros, getting the DOF I wanted. So I couldn't buy an adapter to sync a strobe or use a Canon in manual mode. No flash sync port either.
  • Battery burns up quick- could be all the LCD viewing I was doing, but you would need to have a few extras for a day of shooting. You will be charging your battery via USB charger they supply, or your computer. It charges really quick, like an hour, but that's about how long it will shoot with heavy use; ok I'm exaggerating a bit but I get uncomfortable at 50% if I don't have a spare handy:-)

Anyway, if money were plentiful I'd keep this camera as it is a well engineered bit of gear; check out Amazon if you are looking to try it yourself

]]> (PHOTOSHACK.COM) RX100 product reviews reviews sony Tue, 28 Jul 2015 04:31:33 GMT
Mentoring: Studio Lighting and Post-Capture Treaments I am a passionate person who is in love with the art of producing great images, but did you know that I'm also a mentor for photographers?  In addition to being a member of the Digital Explorers of Orange County club, I also teach private sessions to aspiring artists who want to learn

- studio lighting techniques

- posing and composition

- digital workflow (including Lightroom culling, basic adjustments, minor retouching)

- advanced post-capture treatments in Photoshop, compositing and other creative elements

An example of this is with my good friend and photographer Mimosa Luong, 7 Delights Photography.  Incidentally, Mimosa sat for me during a lighting seminar wearing beautiful traditional Vietnamese formal gowns.  

IMG_6818IMG_6818 <<Mimosa

She brought over several friends to photograph, and was prepared to get 3-4 looks out of her session.   The theme that the gentleman wanted was along the lines of Kingsman (the movie.)   

Mimosa shot Tony and Stephen in various lighting scenarios.

Here's the raw shot of Tony doing the secret agent gun pose:  IMG_8090IMG_8090Tony the Kingsman Shot wide angle And with some photoshop composite work, here's what we came up with for a final image.  The work here was to layer mask Tony and drop in a background of cold steel. IMG_8090-EditIMG_8090-Edit

In this shot of Stephen, we were looking for a grad shot.


We really got crazy with this one...notice the "S" monogrammed on the wall?  This was layer masking, dropping in a background, and doing overlay blends of flames and the text for the monogram.


And in this raw shot with Tony we had a background of Rome setup which was a daylight shot as you see here:

IMG_8129IMG_8129 But I wanted I dropped in a layer with the blend mode multiply of some fireworks, and several adjustment layers.  Now it looks like night time!

IMG_8129-2IMG_8129-2 In this last raw shot, we took the same Rome background and flipped it to the unprinted side and took some casual photos.  He looks great!


But I thought that changing his handkerchief to blue and dropping in another background to complement those colors looked much better:


There are no limits to the looks one can achieve with a good combination of dramatic portrait lighting and digital treatments.


]]> (PHOTOSHACK.COM) art photography artist photo mentor photography Sun, 07 Jun 2015 22:03:34 GMT
Create Your Ultimate Headshot only $200 The "Ultimate Headshot" is key to your LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter or other social media profile shot.   Actors, models, and other personalities will appreciate a headshot that shows their uniqueness, their true personality coming through in a dynamic engaging image.

A headshot has to say a lot in just one image; strength, wit, intelligence, sincerity, FUN.   My unique studio approach will make your eyes sparkle, your face light up and will give you the best possible connection to your fans, future employer, casting director or agency.  Get your Ultimate Headshot today!

A portrait communicates important traits of the subject, and I love doing this in dramatic ways.


]]> (PHOTOSHACK.COM) Actor headshot actor actor portfolio facebook profile headshot headshot orange county headshot photography orange county instagram profile photo linkedin profile photo model profile photo twitter profile picture Wed, 01 Apr 2015 16:56:09 GMT
Mirrorless Cameras and the Demise of the SLR

I've been a loyal Canon shooter for 15 years now, starting with the AE-1 and Elan film SLR's, then moving through 10D, Rebel XTI, 1D, 1DS, EOS-M, 5D Mark II, and 5D Mark III (my current Canon.)   I've invested probably $50k in Canon over these years, and have been able to create beautiful photographs.   The lenses are excellent (the L series in particular) and the cameras are durable, reliable and easy to learn the various menus to get things done.   The repair depot is right down the street from me so when I drop my camera or lens, I'm able to get it fixed in a week.

The past few years I've seen a huge wave of "Four Thirds" and other mirrorless cameras stirring controversy; the compact size, ability to use other lenses with adapters, and now recently super fast autofocus and high sensitivity/low noise sensors are compelling me to look at making the shift away from my beloved Canon.   The slow pace Canon has with technology changes are really starting to impact their line up; the EOS-M which is three years old is their only mirrorless interchangeable lens camera, and it has no electronic viewfinder (not good for me.)

It wasn't until I saw the recent reviews and videos of the Sony A7S that I really got excited.   The camera is not a megapixel killer (12 megapixel when others are 24+) however the ability to have "native ISO 490K" with 15 stops of dynamic range changed my thinking.   I have been very unhappy with the noise in the shadows of my images, particularly in the studio where I am purposely shooting the extremes of the zones, highlights to shadows.   The little red speckles for no apparent reason just irk the hell out of me and require post work to get rid of them.   My initial testing of the Sony has blown me could not take a poorly exposed image with this camera.   Your shots in difficult lighting will yield detail in shadows and highlights!   Tha A7S is a full frame sensor camera, is pricey at $2500, but the flexibility of this tool is just incredible.

I know this is only the tip of the iceberg, and likely as not this technology will eventually make its way into Canon DSLR's if they buy Sony chips...but the ability to use Canon Lenses on Sony e-mounts with adapters has made it possible to use today's Sony without losing my investment in Canon lenses; a great thing when you think about all the other little bits like filters that fit Canon lenses, flash battery packs for Canon strobes (you can use them in Manual mode just fine.)  Another great thing:  focus peaking!   I have waited years for Magic Lantern to get the 5d MK III version of the firmware done (still waiting) so that I can better use the super fast lenses like the Canon 85mm f1.2 L; there is no good focus screen for the MK III so critical focusing is nearly impossible.   With the Sony A7S and electronic viewfinder with focus peaking turned on, you can get super fine focus accurately...something I just can't do with the Canon.

I have a mind to get the Sony A6000 as well; the fastest autofocus mirrorless out there, with whopping 24mp sensors....with a Canon 70-200mm lens, you really have an amazing sports camera.

5 Day B&W Challenge5 Day B&W ChallengeProving that there is always something to photograph: these piles of dirt looked unusual in the land by the Tustin airfield where they are building a million new high density housing complexes. DSC00258DSC00258 DSC00252DSC00252



]]> (PHOTOSHACK.COM) A7S Sony Thu, 06 Nov 2014 18:23:05 GMT
Rest In Peace George Mann My friend George Mann passed away today, ending his suffering at last. He was such a good guy, was generous and kind, and loved photography just like I do. He was a wonderful photographer/artist who mentored other photographers and models. I got to know him ten years or so ago, on OneModelPlace website forum. Turns out he ran the Photo Deviants of Orange County photography club that meets the second Saturday of the month at the Cowgirls Cafe Inc. Through his group I met some great friends and fellow photography enthusiasts. I am sad that George has left us, but am a better person for knowing him. Rest in Peace George...


]]> (PHOTOSHACK.COM) george mann Wed, 22 Oct 2014 00:36:04 GMT
Cora Kasperski - Fitness Champion

]]> (PHOTOSHACK.COM) Wed, 04 Jun 2014 04:49:25 GMT
Cora Kasperski Fitness Champion

]]> (PHOTOSHACK.COM) Wed, 04 Jun 2014 04:48:40 GMT
The Sunset at Back Bay _INW5800_INW5800

]]> (PHOTOSHACK.COM) Sat, 08 Feb 2014 06:28:12 GMT
Vows Renewed: The Arellanos

Family and friends came to see the Arellanos renew their vows.  There was lots of love and happiness for everyone!

]]> (PHOTOSHACK.COM) catholic christian marriage renewing vows vows Sat, 17 Aug 2013 22:08:48 GMT
Camera Review: Fuji X100S The Fuji X100S is a beautiful retro looking camera, with very high end features.  I was attracted to it since it looked very much like my first 35mm camera that my dad had bought when he was in Japan in the service.  The camera is a fixed lens 23mm f2.0 (very fast) and very sharp.  They do sell converters for even wider angle, and lens hoods, etc.  It does include a built-in flash which works extremely well.  In fact, if you just left this camera on auto mode, it would work nearly effortlessly in any grabshot, family outing kind of thing.  It is small, solid but not heavy.  The quality is evident when you look at the seams, the metal finish, and well placed buttons.   

What I liked most:

1.  Cool.   Just dang cool.

2.  The Velvia simulation mode.   Velvia reverse negative film makes gorgeous saturated slides that make landscapes look amazing.  I tried the camera out on my first day, and here's what I came up with in the Velvia simulation mode:

3. EFV viewfinder; this thing is nifty since you can pop a lever on the front and it will give you the electronic viewfinder, representing the exposure level you are about to capture as well as focus points and all the other good information.   If you are having trouble seeing (as in, your manual strobe will fire but until there there ain't much to focus on) you can use the eye sensored straight through the viewfinder.  It shows you exposure info, and where your autofocus point is.

4.  Rear display; this is a very high resolution display that can also be used as the third focus preview method.  It is not touch screen, but your 41 autofocus points are easily accessible with the command wheel.

5.  The 41 focus points!   Seriously, this is good stuff for a compact camera of any kind, and really works good here.

6. Panorama mode:  I didn't discover this feature until after my first day when I stitched vertical shots together to make the Newport Back Bay shot.   It works exceptionally well, and behaves much like the iphone style pano apps.

7.  High quality images, low light shooting.   Very good high ISO shots.  The APS-C sensor on this camera has some filtering removed so you are getting more sharpness than typical dslr implementations of this sensor size.  Stick that baby in auto and see how good your impromptu shots turn out!

8. Multiple exposure mode: really cool, and something that Canon just came out with finally on their dslr's.  Street scenes would be killer with this feature.


1. Wide shots; great for street scenes, great for landscapes.  Not as good for portraits.   The depth of field at the distance of 10 feet or so is quite large, even at f2.0.  So if you are all about headshots with creamy background and the subject popping out,  you will need to move in to about 4 feet...and that does not have the same "compressed distance" effect.  Most people would not care about this though...

2. Could use a reticulating screen.  Really, I do want to be able to do nice video with my photos, and having a waistlevel viewfinder or over the head monitor is pretty important to keep a steady shot and follow focus.

3. Does not autofocus video.  

4. Expect to be able to review the shot on the back screen by just clicking the review button; however if you are shooting in evf or optical viewfinder, you are reviewing in the EFV or you will have to hit the display button after going to optical viewfinder.  Not intuitive and even after about 50 shots I kept stumbling around to get to previews.   Purists would say "hey, you are a photographer you should not even need this" but I have bad eyes and getting critical focus takes work for me....missing a shot because I didn't check is just silly.


All in all, this camera would make a great travel camera, and will inevitably make people go "whoah...looks like a film camera!"   The film modes are wonderful, and if you could get by with a "normal" focal length (35mm equiv.) then this camera is top notch quality.   If money were no object, I'd keep this simply because it is gorgeous, functional and feels good to hold.


]]> (PHOTOSHACK.COM) camera camera review fuji fuji x100s x100s Thu, 18 Jul 2013 05:23:17 GMT
Old Chevy in Long Beach In the middle of a nice neighborhood near Belmont Shore, this old car caught my eye.  My nephew Trevor assisted me today with the portable flash system and we took photos of this old relic. A few neighbors were curious as to what we were doing (all the equipment) and told us that this car is owned by a guy around the corner. He knows exactly when to move it before it gets ticketed or towed away, and always moves it just in time in the middle of the night. Supposedly it still runs. Inside, it is filled with all kinds of junk.

]]> (PHOTOSHACK.COM) automobile car chevrolet chevy eccentric old car rust rusty Mon, 20 May 2013 13:19:35 GMT
Rusty Tractors Like Dinosaurs

The day was overcast and desolate mostly, with a constant breeze moving the things around that weren't made of steel, wood or rubber.  The Photo Deviants of Orange County naturally make field trips like this fun.   The land is very spread out at 58 acres.   I know I didn't see probably but half of these iron and wooden beasts.

]]> (PHOTOSHACK.COM) Tue, 07 May 2013 21:53:43 GMT
RAWArtist "Marvel" show April 21, 2013

RAWARTIST- Marvel from Vin Weathermon on Vimeo.

The show was a great success, although I was only presenting my fine art nude work and our Anime Photography work.   Lauren was awesome, and really made the booth pop (photos of the girl with the real live girl right there).

The setup was much more elaborate than any of the other booths as we had our own white balanced lighting and a projector hooked to an ipad and sound system to show "The Making of - Anime Portrait".   I had not counted on how difficult it was to actually hang the artwork on the chain link fences, but have a better idea of how to do that in the future if I ever have to do that again.

There were many people that stopped just short of the booth because they were afraid of looking too interested in nudity (an interesting phenomenon considering the show was an artistic show.)  But Lauren and I did our best to engage them, and have them take a pick of our portfolio cards and explained we do more than just nudies.

The other exhibitors were awesome, friendly and of course crazy-creative.  Makeup artist Rachalle Llanes worked so hard to get her models ready for the runway, which unfortunately was scheduled way too late in the production when about half of the people left, including most of my guests who didn't want to wait around an hour and a half to see it.   But it was COOL for sure...will post videos later.

Overall, a great back is sore from lifting, and my feet hurt from standing all day...but a good sore I guess!

IMG_6400 Rachelle Llanes at work

]]> (PHOTOSHACK.COM) fashion rawartist Mon, 22 Apr 2013 15:40:55 GMT
The Anime Portrait This idea comes from my daughter Lauren, who loved the videos by  Anastasiya Shpagina - Real Life Anime Girl  who does fantastic makeup to transform herself into an anime character.   Lauren wanted to try this herself, so we did a photoshoot. Makeup provided by Rachelle Llanes (


I thought the makeup and wardrobe really made the image; 2 hours of makeup included contacts (which Lauren could not wear because they made her eyes tear up constantly), airbrushing, and all kinds of stuff.  The photography was a 4 light setup, against a computer printed forest scene.

Here is a beginning of a video created by Frank Aragon, a gifted filmmaker, producer, actor and director.  Many thanks for making this beautiful movie..

vin sounds rough-Desktop from Steven Aragon on Vimeo.



]]> (PHOTOSHACK.COM) anastasiya anime Sat, 20 Apr 2013 15:06:17 GMT
RAWARTISTS.ORG showing April 21 Friends, I have a show opening at the RAWARTISTS.ORG event which is happening at the Shark Club in Costa Mesa.  There, you will see a collection of my fine art nude prints and products that I'm in the process of pulling together.   These are mostly never before seen images, at least in print, and should really be a nice addition to the show.

Please come and see the show;  website has details and a link to buy tickets.  Or, you can buy your tickets directly here.  They are only $15, and you are guaranteed to have a good time with all kinds of art from paintings to live music, dancers, and other performing artists in a cool club environment.

See you there!!!

]]> (PHOTOSHACK.COM) Tue, 02 Apr 2013 17:43:12 GMT
Photography Tip # 7: Choosing your studio lighting You've got your Canon, Nikon or whatever has a built-in flash perhaps, and maybe you have purchased a speedlight to go with it.  But you notice that the photos look pretty much the same, flat and casting unnatural shadows which pretty much "look like flash".  It's time to upgrade your studio lighting!

1.  On the cheap; you can extend the capabilities of your speedlight/s with a remote trigger.  There are tons of them out there now, radio slaves that are fired off by your camera hot shoe.  Sometimes they are even built into the speedlights themselves.   Mount the flash on a light stand, and you have off camera lighting to put shadows in a more pleasing place approximating sunlight.   Buy the extra umbrella hotshoe bracket for the flash and you can bounce that light into an umbrella or off the walls, ceilings.  This can be a very effective soft, broad light.   One of the problems with this setup is you will eventually run out of juice and your flash recycle times get very long; sometimes you get underexposed images if you are trying to do a stereotypical "oh yeah baby, make love to the camera" while popping of 10 frames per second.    You can increase the recycle times of your speedlights with external batteries like the Quantum packs; they replace the batteries with a fast recycle.  Beware though, this juice popping like crazy can actually melt your speedlight.  I've done it.   Quantum Flash for Canon

2. Invest in studio lighting with monolights or a pack setup.   I have been a huge fan of White Lightning monolights (Paul C. Buff) and their wireless trigger/controller/meter system.   The lights are powerful, sturdy and economical.   They are a US company with fantastic support.  I've had them replace at no charge parts like capacitors that wore out within three years.   Prompt and friendly...the best.   

You can start with a single monolight and work your way up to multiple lights.   If you start with one and learn to bounce light with reflectors and walls, you can really do wonderful lighting.   Complexity does not necessarily help.   If you have mastered one light and reflector, work your way into  a hairlight and fill light/background light.  Good thing is with the White Lightnings you can variably adjust any strobe remotely with their Commander; so you can buy three of the same lights and handle all of the typical lighting scenarios.   They also sell light stands and the modifiers that fit them.   They are a little more expensive than some of cheap JTL systems, but the quality is worth the extra price.   I have had my WL for almost 10 years and they have seen quite a bit of action!

The budget minded photographer might start with the Alien Bees line also by Paul C. Buff which are quite a bit cheaper.  I have the Ringflash and a AB1600; they are powerful and have the same features and control capabilities as the White Lightnings pretty much, but the housings are plastic.   They are still super functional and I've yet to break one.

The beauty dish is awesome and inexpensive, and the spot grids are a must to push bands or circles of light on the background, hair or side.   They fit both the White Lightnings and the Alien Bees.   Here is an example of a spot grid and a purple gel against gray seamless paper.

3.  Look at other light modifiers like Photoflex softboxes once you've got your basics down.

Learn these techniques and more with my "hands on" Photography Mentoring session.

]]> (PHOTOSHACK.COM) Irvine Portrait Paul C. Buff alienbees canon irvine family portrait irvine photographer irvine photography irvine photography class irvine photography lessons irvine photos irvine professional photographer irvine studio learn studio lighting monolights nikon olympus photography studio lighting professional photography lighting softboxes strobes studio lighting white-lightning Fri, 12 Oct 2012 13:00:00 GMT
Photography Tip #6: Understanding Manual Mode So you bought that high-tech DSLR and lenses, and have been shooting on the green "auto" the whole time while noticing that those shots just don't seem to look professional.   The sky is washed out, no longer blue but white.  The puppy you were zooming on with your telephoto does not look sharp and his background is just a distraction.  There's just something different about a professional image and all you know is that yours doesn't look like that even though you have the same camera.  Are you ready to do something about it?

Learn To Shoot Manual

Your cameras Auto features will attempt to guess what the "best" exposure is in a given situation; it will quickly size up the scene by varying degrees of exposure in the image, from the darkest shadows to the brightest highlights based on a set of rules the camera must follow.  The aperture, shutter speed and even sensor sensitivity is set before you've half-pressed the shutter to take that exposure.  Your next shot moments later starts that process anew but not necessarily using the same exact aperture/shutter/ISO of that perfect shot before it.  In that sense, Auto mode is very unpredictable.  

A photographer has to visualize what the photo should look like, and Auto mode does not know what your mind's eye wants to see so it picks "best effort".   It thinks (sort of) "well, I see lots of highlights in the majority of this image so I'll stop down to F16 and give it 1/125th /sec with ISO 160" or something like that.  But if it does that, you will have tons of depth of field, your background will be extremely detailed, and your image might appear underexposed.  Or it might suddenly do something else you don't intend.  So shooting manual gives you predictability; you are in control and you learn to predict the resulting look of the image.  Not all things look great "perfectly exposed".   Drama is often well placed shadows, and manual gives you the control you need to underexpose, overexpose and set the depth of field where you want it.  Auto can't do that!

Here are some manual tips:

1.  Shoot RAW if your camera allows this.  You do not have the same latitude with jpg files later and usually the camera is doing some level of color adjusting, de-noise and other stuff that you can't undo without destroying the file.   The awesome thing about digital versus film is it does not hurt to shoot and throw away.  Also, you can look at the data for the camera settings and learn what worked, what didn't and explain why the image may be blurry or overexposed.

2. Set to manual and refer to Tip #1 for hand holding shots or shooting moving targets

3. Use your camera's exposure meter.  This is a tool that gives you some confidence that you are in the "ballpark" even before you click the shutter.  Meter the "hot" (brightest areas" at your current settings and then meter the darkest areas.   What is the difference between the two?  Is it one stop, two stops or three?  Sometimes splitting the difference is the easiest way to capture what you can and then adjust in Lightroom or other tool later.  Refer to your camera's manual as to how to read your meter.

4. Since you are outdoors and are wanting to get the sky to be blue, try metering the sky of your scene which is the brightest.  adjust your aperture until the sky is dead center exposure and back it off one fstop. Remember if it falls below the speed needed to hand-hold (tipg #1 again) then you have to push that shutter speed back up and adjust your aperture.   Then meter your scene again on the sky and take your shot. You may find that now there are deep shadows on a person's face but a gorgeous blue sky.   This is the perfect time to turn on that flash to fill those shadows in.

5. Experiment with DOF (depth of field) and then exposure.  Setup your own lab with bottles and cans.   Find a wall or fence and set a series of bottles and cans a foot apart along the length of the wall (a table will do).  Start by shooting the can nearest the camera from about five feet away, with your fstop set to its smallest aperture (f22 is common, some lenses go as high as f64).  Meter and set the combination of shutter speed and aperture while increasing the aperture (smaller f-stop) between shots.  What you will notice is there is a distinct relationship between the aperture and the shutter speed.   Do another set only this time from the beginning adjust the shutter speed faster one click for each Do this until you have gotten to the largest aperture your lens has (f2.8 or whatever).   Now compare the images in your editing program.   What aperture made the most pleasing "blurry background"?  If it was overexposed, shoot it again at that aperture and adjust the shutter speed until it has a proper exposure.   Now you have your "sweet spot" for shooting at that distance, with that lens for that "look".  This experiment can be done with just about any scenario where you are able to tell exactly what is in sharp focus or not, including people.  Once you have figured out how the two settings reciprocate and how to expose for looks, i recommend you use a DOF calculator so you can plan your shots with different lenses easily.   You can even get an app for your smartphone so you can do this anywhere.   Check out 

6.  Don't give up.  You will get the hang of it the more you do it.   Resist the temptation to go back to Auto...master this first.  Then work your way up to TV (Time Value mode) and AV (Aperture Value mode).

7.  Experiment by deliberately underexposing; some of my best macro work is intentionally underexposed because it gives super saturated colors.   I'll have another tip for brightening up selective areas in Lightroom in another Tip.


Learn these techniques and more with my "hands on" Photography Mentoring session.

]]> (PHOTOSHACK.COM) Irvine Portrait aperture canon depth of field exposure irvine family portrait irvine photographer irvine photography irvine photography class irvine photography lessons irvine photos irvine professional photographer irvine studio manual mode mentor telephoto weathermon Thu, 11 Oct 2012 13:00:00 GMT
Photography Tip #5: Preparing Backgrounds for Portraits Studio portraiture is more difficult in some ways than doing outdoors because you have to prepare the background (depending on the materials) as well as lighting it.  There are full set backgrounds costing thousands, computer printed canvas costing many hundreds, seamless paper, and a variety of cloth backgrounds.  For this tip, we'll cover just seamless and dyed muslin.

Seamless Paper

Seamless paper comes in any color you can imagine and is supported by background stands and a rod.  Often sold in 5 and 10 foot lengths, they are shipped and stored in tubes to keep them from damage.  This is often used in studios in combination with gels to create the look needed, as with this gray seamless lit with a red gel.  

Seamless gets worn quickly, so you must be prepared to cut off the area that is stood upon every few uses.  You have to let out enough paper to cover the entire shooting area in the foreground, and you have to be careful doing it or it will unroll in a rush and make awful creases and wrinkles.   Once you pull enough out to handle the set, you need to tape the paper down to the floor, at least at each end corner so that your subjects don't trip on them.  Although seamless can be used to give professional looks, it is also difficult to store and change from one color to the next.   You will need to store the 107" or 53" rolls of paper on end to avoid making the paper "settle" and go flat on one side; that will ruin the smooth look you are after and create a Photoshop retouching mess.  

You can order seamless paper from Adorama and B&H Photo.

Muslins for Backgrounds

An economical and versatile background is dyed muslin.  Dyed muslin is much less expensive than painted muslin, canvas or computer printed backgrounds,  yet the looks you can achieve are limited only by your creativity.  For just starting out, try for something like muted grays and blues; this way you can easily gel that for any color you can imagine. You can hang it on a background stand, bunch it in the middle or use spot grids on the lights to create drama.  You can mix multiple muslins or other fabrics to add depth to the set.

Here are a few sources of muslin backdrops:

The Backdrop Outlet

Owens Originals

There are the higher end Denny Manufacturing backgrounds but they are more expensive.  


When you light a background, it can show wrinkles and patterns that are unwanted and distracting which leaves you with lots of Photoshop clean up later.  So if you are going for a look that is muted, and the main focus is the subject, you want the muslin to hang smooth and appear to be a "painted canvas".   Here is an example of distracting creases and wrinkles:

These wrinkles are annoying mostly because the aperture had to be f8 in order to keep the three faces in sharp focus; unfortunately the depth of field didn't blow out the background enough to hide them...a photoshop nightmare.  Below is an example of a brown muslin background with a blue gel, shot at f5.6.  The background is about five feet from the subject.

Note that if you are using black muslin for low key or white muslin for high key, keeping wrinkles off isn't a problem because you are either keeping the light off the background or you are over-exposing for clean whites...more on that in another Tip.

Making Your Muslin Wrinkle Free

To keep your muslin smooth, you will want to hang your muslin on a lightstand and clamp it on four to six points to stretch it as smooth as possible.  

Using heavy spring clamps to make muslin taut If the muslin is not wide enough to reach both sides of the light stand, clamp to one side and the double up on clamps to reach the edge..these clamps available at any hardware store are super strong.

Then you will want to steam the muslin smooth which frankly is a pain in the keister, but made easier with the use of an industrial garment steamer by Jiffy Steamers.  They put out a really good blast of steam and it is almost like ironing the background.  This one is probably 40 years old and still works like a champ.   You can prop the steamer on a stepladder so you can reach all the way to the top using the metal hook to gain extra reach.  You will sweat when you are done.  Think of it as a free spa facial.


Once you've stretched your muslin taut and removed the wrinkles, you are ready to light it.  More on lighting in another Tip!!


Learn these techniques and more with my "hands on" Photography Mentoring session.

]]> (PHOTOSHACK.COM) Irvine Portrait adorama backdrop backdropoutlet background bhphoto dyed muslin irvine family portrait irvine photographer irvine photography class irvine photography lessons irvine photos irvine professional photographer irvine studio irvine' muslin photography photography" portrait seamless paper weathermon Wed, 10 Oct 2012 13:00:00 GMT
Photography Tip #4: Glamour photography with ringlighting A ringlight is pretty much what it sounds like:  a strobe or a hotlight that is in a ring around the lens of the camera, which produces shadowless flat lighting on the face as well as some other effects used in beauty and glamour photography.  Often this helps fill in wrinkles and gives the face a glow, while really lighting the eyes on closeups.

The "style" of ringlighting is often to see the even shadow that completely surrounds the subject if the subject is near a background.  That effect is demonstrated here, with the model being about a foot away from the backdrop.   This approach means that you really want that backdrop as part of the image along with that signature shadow.

This image was shot using the Alienbees Ringlight (available from Paul C. Buff and mounted on the Canon 5D Mark II.  This type of lighting is purely manual; you set the strobe for its intended power output and set your camera to manual.  In this case, set at 1/125th of a second at f5.6, at 70mm (using the EF 24-105mm lens).   To do this you need a flash meter, in my case the old trusty Luna Pro so you can set the proper exposure.  My intention with the above image was to blow out the background a little bit but I probably could have opened up to f2.8 if I kept the eyes in focus.  You can see that it creates a perfectly even shadow around her body.

This is the ABR800.  There are many cheap ringlights that are sold for $80-100, but they do not put out enough light to do the job for shooting people; they really only are able to light macro shots up close.  This baby puts out lots of watts.

1/160th second at f13, ISO 125, 80mm with ABR800 Ringlight

In this shot, you can see how the ringlight places the highlight right in the center of the pupil; you can see this telltale ring on many beauty photographs in magazines as it diminishes flaws and larger pores with no shadows.   To accomplish this I had to set up a scaffold atop the model, and place all the fabric, hair pieces, ornamental flowers and drape on the floor.  In this case I actually used both a ringlight and a softbox to the left of the model to throw the shadow to the right to add a little more dimension.

With a battery pack and inverter, you can power the 110V ringlight anywhere.

Learn these techniques and more with my "hands on" Photography Mentoring session.


]]> (PHOTOSHACK.COM) ABR800 Irvine Portrait Paul C. Buff alienbees beauty photography glamour irvine family portrait irvine photographer irvine photography irvine photography class irvine photography lessons irvine photos irvine professional photographer irvine studio learn photography hands on model photography photography mentoring photography tips portrait ringlight soft lighting tips vin weathermon weathermon Tue, 09 Oct 2012 13:00:00 GMT
Photography Tip #3: Tricks for Macro Photography For today's tip, I want to share what I've learned about shooting macros.    Macros are amazing because I am surprised at what I find whenever I'm shooting.  You cannot see every detail at the time of capture, but when you see it on a big screen or printed large you find things you never imagined.   Look at the little fish stamped onto the watchpiece.  I didn't see it when I was composing the shot...

1.  Maintain sharpness your eye sees by knowing the plane you are shooting, especially hand held shots.

What many people find when they attempt to shoot tiny stuff is they are unhappy with the sharpness of the image.  It looks kinda ok in a little part of the image, the rest is just uninterestingly blurry.  

The trick here is to imagine that your lens and sensor of the camera is always looking for a flat surface to shoot; if that means you have to turn the angle of the camera around to do this, you do it until you have the broadest surface area of the object or bug or whatever parallel to the lens center. In this way, even if you are shooting a shallow depth of field (like with a 100mm macro, anything less than f11 is pretty shallow) you will have the majority of the flat surface in sharp focus.  

2. Increase your depth of field for more sharpness

Now the rule of thumb I describe in Tip #1 applies here; ideally you are shooting with a stationary object on a tripod, and then it doesn't matter how long the shutter speed takes, you can crank the aperture down to its smallest (in the above image, shot at 30th second at f32, using the EF100mm f2.8 lens at ISO125) and you will get all the depth of field you need.  It becomes less critical if you are "off" the plane a bit at that point because everything is sharp.

Here are some examples of really shallow depth of field.  The first grasshopper shot works only because the majority of the body is parallel to the lens.  You can see that the antennae behind it goes to blurry mush.  If I had shot this head on, all you would see is maybe its eyes and mouth.

The above ant swarm shot was a super shallow depth of field, and all you are seeing is the tops of the bodies, just barely enough sharpness before the ground turns to mush.  Frankly I was lucky because this was done at 1/60th of a second at F2.8 using a 50mm compact macro lens at ISO 100.  It was a grab shot or I'd have cranked up the ISO and dialed the aperture down to f8 and likely 100th of a second to keep the movement of the ants from blurring them out.

The above shot is at f2.8 (very shallow) using the 100m Macro lens, ISO320, 1/200th second.   If this wasn't higher ISO, this shot would not have been possible hand held.

When you have mastered this with daylight, you can head on to using strobes for your macro shooting. 

A macro shooting setup with gooseneck to move the flash anywhere needed.  Canon 100mm 2.8 macro lens, using the remote speedlight controller (IR) on a tripod.  With the Quantum battery setup.

Learn these techniques and more with my "hands on" Photography Mentoring session.

]]> (PHOTOSHACK.COM) Irvine Portrait irvine family portrait irvine photographer irvine photography irvine photography class irvine photography lessons irvine photos irvine professional photographer irvine studio learn photography hands on macro photography mentoring photography tips tips vin weathermon weathermon Mon, 08 Oct 2012 13:00:00 GMT
Photography Tip #2: Use Your Building Like A Softbox A softbox is used by photographers to spread the beams of light in many directions.  The bigger the softbox, the more "sun like" they appear to be. Having a softbox under, to the right and left shooting a person's face really lights up the eyes and adds depth to the image.

1. Use any big, flat reflective surface like a softbox

So you don't have a softbox or strobes, how can you get that look?  The idea is to make a nice, big light source, the bigger the better.  But what if you just want to take your camera in daylight?  Use your building to your advantage on a sunny day.  You find a large reflective wall to bounce light back in to the eyes.   If you can set your aperture to be pretty wide open (like f5.6 or so) and you position your subject so that the sun reflects off of the building.   A light colored garage door works too.   

2.  Provide shade from direct sunlight

Another surprisingly effective trick is to open your garage door (sunny day of course) and set up a background of some sort behind the subject, camera pointed from the outside into the garage, with the background behind the subject (again, f5.6 to blur that out really good).   I took a set of blinds and hung them up a few feet behind Jake using a background stand (but you can hang from the garage ceiling easily.) The protection of the garage keeps the direct sun from hitting the subject, but the street and driveway apron outside makes a big soft reflector which really makes  the eyes sparkle.  This is especially useful at high noon, when you can't find the angle of the sun to hit the building to bounce off of.

Here is an example of the garage technique!


I have even used the reflected light from a glass window to push light into the face of a subject.   If you can see it with your eyes, you can photograph it!

Learn these techniques and more with my "hands on" Photography Mentoring session.

]]> (PHOTOSHACK.COM) Irvine Portrait Portrait irvine family portrait irvine photographer irvine photography irvine photography class irvine photography lessons irvine photos irvine professional photographer irvine studio learn photography hands on photography mentoring photography tips soft lighting tips vin weathermon weathermon Fri, 05 Oct 2012 13:00:00 GMT
Photography Tips #1: Sharp Hand-held Photos Thought I'd share a series of tips that photographers can use to improve their photography; here's Tip #1:

1.  Improve sharpness of your images by setting correct shutter speed when you are HAND HOLDING your camera (the most convenient way to shoot).

Using the focal length of the lens you are shooting with as a guide, for example a 50mm fixed lens, set your camera's shutter speed to exceed that number.  

So, a 50mm lens must have a shutter speed of 1/60th of a second or greater.   Shooting at a focal length of 200 for a 70-200m telephoto, you should shoot at a minimum 1/250th of a second.  400mm?  1/400 -1/500th of a second.

Shooting moving subjects, like sports?  Kick that up a to at least 1/400th of a second if you are trying to freeze motion.

One easy way to do this is to use your TV mode (Time Value);  set it to the appropriate shutter speed and the aperture will be handled automatically for you.


Even if you have an image stabilizing lens, your moving subjects will still cause blur unless you can freeze them.   Sometimes the blur helps show motion and that may be desired however so just the focal length equivalent will work fine.  

Below is an example of a long exposure (2 seconds) to create motion.

Learn these techniques and more with my "hands on" Photography Mentoring session.

]]> (PHOTOSHACK.COM) Irvine Portrait irvine family portrait irvine photographer irvine photography irvine photography class irvine photography lessons irvine photos irvine professional photographer irvine studio learn photography hands on photography mentoring photography tips tips vin weathermon Thu, 04 Oct 2012 14:24:41 GMT
Learn How To Photograph Stuff with Vin

If you have a decent SLR and lenses, and you really want to make your images "pop" off the page (or computer), then you may want to have some one on one photography mentoring by yours truly.

What we do is find out what kind of photography you are most interested in from the list below, then we setup a shoot so you can learn hands-on and be guaranteed some great photography for your portfolio.

Areas I Mentor in:

  • Portraiture (studio)
  • Boudoir/Glamour (studio)
  • Macro (studio or outdoors)
  • Still life (studio or outdoors)
  • Babies (studio or home)
  • Landscape/Long Exposure

The cost of the mentoring depends on how much time we need, what expenses may be involved with the session such as model, hair and makeup, and travel required.   But an example of a model shoot would be something like this:

1 Hour set design and lighting

1 Hour studio photography

1 Makeup session

1 Hour of photo editing and enhancement in Lightroom

$300 for my work mentoring

$50 for the model

$50 for the makeup

$400 total for a complete series of professionally studio photographs in high resolution, all images.   

I provide the studio lighting, backgrounds, camera (if needed) wireless triggers, instruction all along the way.   I guarantee you will love the results, learn a ton in the process, and be inspired to go off and create art on your own with your new found knowledge!

If this sounds good to you, contact me and let's chat!

]]> (PHOTOSHACK.COM) Irvine Portrait Irvine photography irvine family portrait irvine photographer irvine photography irvine photography class irvine photography lessons irvine photos irvine professional photographer irvine studio learn to photograph photography instruction photography mentor weathermon Wed, 03 Oct 2012 03:09:02 GMT
Frame Of Mind - Culture and Nature Learned by Youth through Photography

I find this project inspiring!   Have a look at the videos, you will smile when you see these kids grasp the importance of understanding and protecting their natural environment in Haiti, which has been decimated by deforestation.   The people who are involved are the coolest ever, and using photography to explore and capture beauty is always a good thing in my book.

Please give them your support and generous donations.



]]> (PHOTOSHACK.COM) Fri, 14 Sep 2012 16:04:14 GMT
Beach Landscapes on Long Exposure - How To by Vin Weathermon  

I love the sunrise or sunset at the beach; the quality of light, the chance of color, the richness of color.

I became a bit bored with typical shots so I thought I'd play with doing long exposures..after all, that IS what a tripod is for, right?

To properly expose and keep detail you have to keep the camera perfectly still, shoot at the higher range of your fstop, lowest film speed, and filter the light before it gets to your sensor with a neutral density filter, and use a bulb or intervalometer.

The effect is ethereal...

1. Tripod, sandbag to add weight, with sturdy tripod head.

2. ND filters to fit your lens of choice (in my case 77mm with my 70-200mm IS lens) You will need to get to at least 8 stops in bright daylight. I have a FADER HD variable filter so I can just move that around to my liking. But if you stack them, you can get cheaper filters and just add them.

3. Set camera to bulb setting, and set Aperture to F22 (not the top of the range, but up there)

4. Set ISO to 50 if possible, or lowest

5. Connect a wireless trigger (got one on Amazon for $40, has an intervalometer too).

6. Set your shot to include some static things; when the waves go to mush you want to have some sharp contrast. Try to keep lens flare off the surface of the ND filter (color shifting happens).

7. Trigger off the Bulb for 30 or more seconds. Increase the time to get proper exposure.

8. If you are overexposed, crank the fstop to its highest (smallest aperture)

and try again.

One thing for sure you are going to have fewer throw away images because you have to sit and hold the shutter every time, you make them count.

Overall, much fun shooting these and I'm looking forward to more beach scenes...maybe even rivers!


Scenic Scenic Scenic Scenic  Landscapes by Vin Weathermon @vinweathermon

]]> (PHOTOSHACK.COM) landscape photography weathermon Wed, 25 Jul 2012 03:40:26 GMT
Photography should be cheap or free these days Got a phone call last night (one of the very few these days) from someone who asked if I did headshots for business. I said I sure do, and costs around $100. He thought that price was outrageous given that everyone has an iPhone these days. I told him that does not mean he will get a very good photograph, and that I don't do passport photos, and asked if he had seen my work (he didn't answer). Then he says he was just trying to find out if he could get a cheaper price than Target. I told him he absolutely should go to Target, just before I hung up on him, spluttering to himself.

Now I know I was probably just tired from the prior 10 hours of work, and probably should have spent some time educating him on why my portrait was worth more than the Target store. Maybe I would have turned him around, but in the end, I just didn't want his business. I just couldn't see spending 20 minutes talking him into something he was probably expecting to pay $20 for.

Yes, I could take a very fine headshot with an iPhone. But most people could not. So what makes an image valuable enough to pay for the time and skill to produce it?

]]> (PHOTOSHACK.COM) Sat, 23 Jun 2012 15:51:39 GMT
Why PAY for photography when your iPhone is awesome?  

If you're no stranger to the digital cameras everywhere you'll wonder why anyone would PAY for photography when all the new cell phone pictures are fantastic.  My answer is simple:  I want to capture a NEW dimension of my clients than they've seen before, an heirloom time-slice that makes my clients feel just a bit differently about themselves then before we started.      

Try doing that with no experience, training or professional gear....I know I couldn't do it!!


Vin Weathermon



14252 Culver Drive, STE A776

Irvine, California  92604

]]> (PHOTOSHACK.COM) Tue, 19 Jun 2012 02:28:13 GMT
Hire Me Please!!! In case I haven't made a good case for why you should commission me to do your portrait, let me expand my case further:

1. I can only do limited sessions in a given year; I am not doing volume so every portrait I do is "special" to me.   Therefore, the creation will be special to you too.

2. I spend much time and love on the photographs because I enjoy the outcome as much as you do.   Your photographs are unique and personal.

3. I could really use the work.  A steady stream of work would mean I could continue to do more of what I love.   Wouldn't you like that for me?

4. It's not that expensive.  $200 to create the images, and you pay whatever product costs from the website when you order.   Pretty affordable when you consider the portrait will probably hang on your wall for generations to come!

Why not hire me!


]]> (PHOTOSHACK.COM) Thu, 14 Jun 2012 13:28:47 GMT
Raindrop sno globes put these sno globe scenes in the droplets

]]> (PHOTOSHACK.COM) raindrops Sun, 06 May 2012 04:04:18 GMT
Raindrops on Gina's Yellow Rose

Gina told me that her rose looked like it was sprinkled with diamonds.  I agree!

]]> (PHOTOSHACK.COM) drops rose spring rain water yellow Fri, 27 Apr 2012 04:02:53 GMT
More filthy things In my quest for the perfect Photo Deviants of OC "Filth" theme, I've photographed a few more filthy things and pulled some from my archives.


Stalls are clean IMG_0287 Outrooted

]]> (PHOTOSHACK.COM) dirt dirty filth old Sun, 08 Apr 2012 15:32:56 GMT
AllMedia2012 at Irvine Fine Arts Center - Juried Exhibit

The Irvine Fine Arts Center presents All Media 2012, an annual juried exhibition open to Southern California artists. This show features two and three-dimensional art, including painting, drawing, sculpture, photography, printmaking, book arts, ceramics, digital media, and more.

To receive a prospectus, please sign-up on our PARTICIPATE IN JURIED EXHIBITIONS
You will only receive notifications of juried exhibitions

]]> (PHOTOSHACK.COM) exhibit juried vin weathermon Thu, 22 Mar 2012 02:28:53 GMT
Filth Images that evoke the word "Filth".


]]> (PHOTOSHACK.COM) filth weathermon Sat, 17 Mar 2012 21:47:08 GMT
Silhouette Sunset Sunset Rock, Sequoia Nat'l Forest

]]> (PHOTOSHACK.COM) Mon, 27 Feb 2012 04:51:10 GMT
MaynardRothchild - Editor I've done a website for a friend, Maynard Rothchild.   His video editing is awesome!


]]> (PHOTOSHACK.COM) Tue, 21 Feb 2012 02:44:54 GMT
Photodeviants Meetup Wildlife The Gorilla mom was suckling her baby boy.  You see a whole range of "human" expression on these faces. 

Wildlife Majestic giraffes charge across the desert plains...actually I used a sepia filter.

This little dude was staring off in all directions, king of the heap.  Elsewhere tons of these guys were jamming all over the place at high speed.

Wildlife This cat was sleepy and I managed to get him before he went and flopped down beside two lady 

]]> (PHOTOSHACK.COM) animals weathermon zoo Mon, 20 Feb 2012 06:45:33 GMT