Thursday, May 22, 2014

A recap and tour of my humble little photo office

Hey folks! Wow what a crazy busy season its become. With pretty much no free days all month my editing has been piling up like crazy. Apart from the usual weddings, preweddings and family shoots I've also been doing quite a few diving shoots out in the Kerama islands and will stay on Aka island for 3 days on a photo assignment next week. Also coming up next week is my first Paintball photo shoot, that should be interesting! Last week I had the rare opportunity to take a tour of the fighter jets on Kadena US air base and got to sit in the cockpit of an F-15! That was unreal and I felt like a little kid all over again. They wouldn't let me take my cameras or even phone for that matter along on that excursion but my guide was nice enough to take a few snaps of me playing around with all the controls inside and around the jet.

My Youtube channel has been growing steadily with just shy of 800 subscribers now and continuing to grow faster the more videos I upload. Not that I've had much time recently to spend on video editing or making new photography tutorial videos but I try to regularly get up just a basic video even if its just filmed with the Gopro as often as I can.

I was asked by a couple of commenters if I would make a tour video of my office here where I run fotoShisa Photography so I quickly whipped around with the Gopro in hand and went over the tools and toys I use and a few other bits here in my messy little office. You can check it out below if you like to geek out on gear or just see the kind of workspace I spend a lot of time in.

One more very cool project I'll be shooting in a couple of months is going to involve a military bomb suit and C4 explosives!! So stay tuned for that. 

Thanks for dropping by!

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Newly aquired photo plug-in's and album software

In this shot I used OnOne's Perfect Effects to give 
a radial blur to the clouds
Thought I would share with you some software I've bought and one I got for free and you can too (maybe for a limited time)

So right now On One software is giving away their Perfect Effects 8 plug in for Lightroom and Photoshop. The app can also be used as a standalone program if you like to edit things that way as well.
In the past I mostly only use the plug ins from Nik software and they are awesome but On One has some other cool features worth checking out, especially considering its free right now!

You can get it from their site here.

Here's a few images from a recent all day Prewedding shoot I did where I played around with some of the effects in Perfect Effects 8.
used the vignette lens blur to send attention to the center. 

 I tried out some texture in this one to give some interest 
to an otherwise dull sky

 I used a warm glow on this one 
 this was a pretty low contrast shot so I used tonal contrast to bring out shadows
to reveal detail in the rock and moss
here I went a little wild and stacked a texture with vignetting to get 
this result

 in this shot I tried out the Tilt Shift lens blur

 the original background came out quite green in this shot
so I used the hew/saturation brush to warm the background
and finally in this one I used a circular lens blur again
just to help direct attention into the center of the image

Like any filters the key is to not go overboard which is very easy to do with these kinds of plug-in's. 
Its fine to experiment but overcooking images or using effects on too many images is never a good thing. Same goes for fisheye lenses or lensbaby etc.. Too much of a good thing... as they say.

Anyway I think its a really cool app to get and best of all its free! 

The other two programs I recently picked up are Portrait Professional which I've played around with the trial version a few years back and finally decided to pull the trigger on it as right now they have it for %50 off plus they are giving away a code to get a further 10% discount on that making it very cheap. Not that I shoot that many close up portraits at all but it could be handy to have in the tool bag all the same. 

And finally one I'm really excited about is a new album designing program called Smart Albums by Pixellu. This is not a cheap one at $300 but from the reviews and videos I've seen it really helps to speed up and make the task of album designing a breeze. So finally I've started adding the option to order Photo books and albums to my wedding and full day Prewedding photo packages. 
I'll do a more indepth review of this app once I've got a chance to use it for a bit. 

So there we are, just a little round up of some new apps I wanted to share and hopefully they will help you to speed up your workflow and make life easier for you too!

Monday, May 05, 2014

Representing Spider Holster in magazine ad

Just wanted to share a page from this months issue of Behind the shutter magazine where I was found in an ad for Spider Holster for whom Im an ambassador for. One of my online photographer friends pointed it out to me and sent me a link to the page. Its still a trip everytime I see myself in publication but I'm happy to be representing a great product like Spider Holster!

For those that don't know Spider Holster is the belt Im wearing in the image. It allows you to do away with rubbish camera straps that are always getting in the way and slipping off the shoulder. Spider makes it comfortable to wear your camera(s) all day long and access them super quick and easily.

For anyone who wants to try out the Spider you can order them from the States or here in Asia.

For my friends in Japan/Asia check out and use my offer code PeteFreeShip to get free shipping!

And for my US friends check out and use the offer code Leong20 to get 20% off your order!

You wont regret it!

If you haven't seen it already check out my review of the Spider Holster dual camera pro system in the video below.