Posts by Larry

Are You Ready To Smile??

$$$ SMILE! $$$ How do you put a price on a kid’s smile?  How about $240??? IT’S BACK! In April, we will once again be participating in Celebration of Smiles – an event organized by PPA Charities.  Those of you who participated last year will certainly remember it.  If you missed it, you need to mark your calendars for April 26 right now! THE CAUSE  The event benefits an organization called Operation Smile.  Started in 1982, this organization is dedicated to treating children who are suffering with cleft lips, cleft palates and other facial deformities.  In 1996, they were the first recipient of the Conrad Hilton Humanitarian Prize in recognition of their contributions to alleviate human suffering.  Last year, medical volunteers provided free surgeries for 9,221 children – both international and local.  I think this is truly amazing. As a professional photographer, I make my living off smiles – so this charity was clearly something I wanted to get involved with.  My wife found out about the program at a photography convention last year and we have been big fans ever since. THE EVENT It costs $240 for Operation Smile to repair one child’s smile, so the Professional Photographers of
Read More

A Year From Now

The Quote “A year from now, you will wish you had started today.”      –Karen Lamb Think about that for a second. Really let it sink in. The Plan If you are like me, you probably have a ton of plans.  A million things you plan on doing at some point.  The problem we all run into is that they never seem to work their way to the top of the To-Do list.  When I came across this quote a while back, it really spoke to me.   Its the whole ” A long journey begins with a single step” thing…. the hardest part is starting. For example, I love to play guitar- but I rarely pick it up and practice.  I’ve often thought about dedicating just 15 minutes EVERY day to a quick practice.  I wonder- if I had started doing this a year ago, how much better would I be today?  Man- I wish I had started a year ago!!!  So why didn’t I?  That’s the question.   I think the biggest obstacle we face is that life is geared toward putting out fires.  Whatever your job is, you probably don’t have the luxury to pick and
Read More

Fun In Mexico

Wanna Get Away? Everyone can use a good, relaxing vacation every so often.  Of course, we all need to learn things also.  How about combining BOTH into one fun-filled weekend?  If you are a photographer – from an enthusiast, all the way to a pro- you won’t want to miss this!  I’ve teamed up with the folks at Legacy Travel to offer an educational getaway for a few lucky shutterbugs.  If you know me, you know that two of my passions are travel and teaching photography.  If you want to get better at photography, this is going to be a no-brainer. The Plan We will spend a few days in Mexico at El Dorado Royale, a spa resort- voted one of the top 100 hotels in the world. THE WORLD!!! In addition to beautiful scenery and all inclusive dining, I will personally take the group on a few photo excursions and teach you how to take better vacation photos.  We will photograph in the jungle, on the beach- even in an underground cave!  Trust me, you will come back with images that will cause quite a stir on Facebook!!! Equipment It doesn’t matter if you have a high-end DSLR or
Read More

Review: Olloclip for the iPhone5

If you are like me, your iPhone is with you all the time – like 24/7.  Even though I make my living with a DSLR, I still take the vast majority of my “snapshot” pics with my phone.  Its just easier because it is always with me- and the image quality isn’t bad!  The one issue I always have with the iPhone, is the lens.  It will zoom in a little bit, but you can’t make it wider… until now. The Olloclip I was first introduced to the Olloclip a couple of years ago when I bought one for my iphone 4.  It is basically a small lens that attaches to your iphone, giving it either a wide angle, fisheye or macro lens option.  The optics are very nice and it opens up a whole new world of iphone photography.  When you combine this lens with your favorite app- like Snapseed or Instagram- the sky is the limit! Here is a sample photograph taken with my iPhone 5- just to give you a reference point for comparison.       Next we will look at a shot taken from the exact same distance, but using the Olloclip wide angle lens.
Read More

Checking out the Iowa Photographers

Off To Iowa I just got back from a fantastic week in Iowa, hanging out with the Iowa Professional Photographers Association. I spent the first few days serving as a juror in the North Central District print competition.  The North Central District is made up of 10 states and part of Canada.  The best photographers from those areas sent their best images to be judged by yours truly and his PPA Juror buddies. It was a great chance to work with some top-notch judges and we had the pleasure of judging some incredible images. It was a mentally draining couple of days, but the fun didn’t stop there.  Instead of heading home after the judging ended on Saturday, I stayed around to put on a program Sunday evening.  Actually, there were TWO programs!  The first was on the do’s and don’ts of print competition and the second was on optimizing the home studio. Speaking We had a packed room for both programs and I got some very positive feedback from everyone afterwards.  How anyone can sit through 6 hours of me talking in one evening is beyond me, but they did it.  Its always fun to speak to a packed
Read More

And The Winner Is…

FACEOFF FINALS The results are in and the people have spoken.  Just a few weeks ago, we started out with 16 great profile pics and each week we narrowed it by half. Yesterday the polls closed for the final round.  The winner will walk away with an iTunes gift card and the bragging rights of being the 2013 Twitter FaceOff Champion. First off, a big congratulations to our finalists @JeremyCowart and @Michrod. WHO WON? So who has the best Twitter profile picture? The people have spoken! The winner -with a whopping 88% of the votes- is…   Congrats Michelle!  Wear your crown proudly! THANK YOU A sincere thanks to everyone who took the time to vote over the past few weeks.  It wouldn’t have been the same without you!  Also- keep an eye out for interesting profile pics so we can make sure they are entered in next year’s competition!    
Read More

Twitter Face-Off Finals

And Then There Were Two… There are tons of great Twitter profile pics out there – and tons of eggs.  A couple of weeks ago, I set out to find the person with the BEST Twitter profile pic.   Some were nominated by friends and fans, others I just stumbled across during my usual Twitter travels.  They have been battling it out every week. Thanks to everyone who has voted along the way and helped us make it this far. We started out with 16 great Twitter profile photos and have narrowed the list down to the final two. Unfortunately, only one can walk away with the crown – so who will it be? The Finalists It comes down to @JeremyCowart and @Michrod.   Both are pretty dang good profile pics.  It is really going to come down to personal preference on this one. Please take a good look at both profile pics and vote for the winner.  Then, leave a quick comment and let me know WHY you chose it. I’d love to hear your thoughts! Let The Final Voting Begin! Polls close Tuesday night, so please vote now! *****   <a href=”http://larry236.polldaddy.com/s/twitter-face-off-finals”>Take Our Survey!</a>
Read More

Twitter Face-Off: Semi-Finals

And Then There Were Four… Congrats to the final four competitors in the 2013 Twitter Face-Off.  We searched the internet for the best of the best and they’ve been battling it out for the past two weeks. Clearly, all four of these folks have fantastic profile portraits.  The big question remains, who has the BEST one? Meet The Finalists I thought I’d give you a little more info on each contestant and a link to their Twitter page.  They are all definitely worth a follow. @Swonderlin Sr. Mgr @momofactor specializing in social media for direct sellers, Host Tweetheart TV, named #TwitterPowerhouse by Huffington Post, ’12 Chevy SXSW Video Host Austin, TX · stephaniewonderlin.com   @JeremyCowart Family Man. Photographer. Artist. Humanitarian. App Creator. Teacher. Founder of @OKDOTHIS and @Help_Portrait. I’m bad with directions. · http://www.jeremycowart.com     @Michrod Radio Personality in Dallas, TX on 96.3 KSCS. Opinions are my own, a fiery Texan! http://facebook.com/MichelleOnTheRadio … Worldwide! · http://michelle.kscs.com     @JosephCristina Professional Photographer, Studio Owner, Inventor, Speaker, Internationally Published Photography & Cinematography • Co-Host DigitalPhotographyCafe.com West Palm Beach, FL · http://alluremm.com   Semi-Final Matchups Ok, its time to figure out which two make it to the finals.  For this matchup, we will pit photographer vs photographer in one match and Texan vs Texan in the other. I know,
Read More

Imaging Excellence

Road Trip This week, I travelled to Atlanta, Georgia to attend the Professional Photographers of America’s national convention- ImagingUSA. I had a great time catching up with old photographer friends and sitting in on some great photography seminars. Imaging Excellence   The high point for me was receiving the Imaging Excellence Award from PPA.  I’ve always been an active participant in photographic competitions and the IE award is one of the top achievements you can reach for.  Every year, the best of the best images are accepted into the PPA Loan Collection and included in the prestigious PPA Loan Book.   Getting an image in the Loan Book is no easy task, but I’ve been fortunate enough to get a few of my images included. The Imaging Excellence Award is given to photographers who have managed to get thirteen of their images accepted into the Loan Collection.  It took a while to achieve, but I ended up with three Loan images this year- which pushed me to the magical 13!  It was truly an honor to be given such an exciting award and sharing the stage with some of the top photographers in the industry. Night At The Aquarium After the awards
Read More

Twitter FaceOff: Round 2

The Votes Are In! Round one is in the past and we are ready to start up Round Two! First off, I want to congratulate the eight winners. There were some really close races, but these three managed to pull out the victory. Round One Victors: @breenickels @Invoker @jeremycowart @josephcristina @michrod @sheshotout @swonderlin @TheLBsta Way to go! However, there is no time to rest on your laurels… its time for another round of eliminations. We’ve got some really tough matchups this week – so every point will count. Be sure to share with your friends and make sure your favorite survives to round two. So WHO has the best Twitter profile pic??? Ready to vote?  You have until Sunday night (1/27/13) at 10pm CST – so don’t delay. Cast your vote now! **** Take Our Survey!
Read More