thefrenchguy photography: Blog en-us (C) thefrenchguy photography [email protected] (thefrenchguy photography) Mon, 16 Mar 2020 07:04:00 GMT Mon, 16 Mar 2020 07:04:00 GMT thefrenchguy photography: Blog 120 115 The Digital Era - Intangible Memories The internet and the digital camera have both completely changed the way people, see, manage and cherish souvenirs. Either photos from a memorable trip, family gathering and special events, millions of images are taken every day and a very small percentage is printed.

Digital images are intangibles, they have no substance and depend 100% on a device to be viewed. These are totally machine dependent, worst technology dependent; this means short live. A recent study shows that in average a digital image, over a one year period, is viewed less than 5 seconds in average while a print that is hanging on a wall or a shelf is viewed for 40 - 60 minutes. The generation Z was born in the digital age, the all free media sharing of images, music and movies. Every minute of their live they have an electronic device attached to their body so they can text, do face time and take a lot of photos. This is the most photographed generation with the least printed images.

In a recent publication by the International Photographic Association shows that over 7 trillion images are taken in a year. 20 years ago that number was about 15 millions. The world is flooded with images of all kind and all quality.  People are losing millions of images every day, that’s technology at work. What has been lost is that it’s not the quantity but the quality of the image that has value. By quality I mean, the moment, the canvas that is hanging on the wall when the entire family was together which is rare these days because family members are living in different states or country.

I recently did a family photo session where the entire family was together for the first time, in a long time, including the grand parents whose health was deteriorating quickly. A few months after the session, the grandfather passed away. Here what one of the family member wrote: Family reunion, family photography, family souvenirsLast Family ReunionPhoto taken a few weeks before the grand-father passed away The beach pictures that you took are the only pictures of the entire family that we have. It’s such a special memory now. I am so glad that we got the large canvas. It now hangs prominently in our home and is a great reminder of a great man. Had you not been so accommodating and thoughtful of their issues and conditions in working with us, we would have never been able to capture that moment.” Bert M.

It takes only one photograph to change the world. It takes only one moment, a precious one that most often people realize its full value long after the fact. Just look at the family photos that are in your parents or grandparents album somewhere and you will have this warm feeling. Only a printed photograph can do that because it’s tangible and can be read by human, you don’t need a device. It’s tangible,  it preserved memories for ever.

Jean-Marie Cote

Thefrenchguy photography

[email protected] (thefrenchguy photography) Canvas Digital Assests Digital Files Family Family Memories Intangiles Preserving Memories Share, Preserve & Relive Fri, 10 Jun 2016 14:31:37 GMT
The Digital Lab: From RAW to Preserved Memories The Digital Lab - Case study: family beach photography.

The question that my clients often ask is: Can I get my photos now that you have done the photo session? In this new digital world people are used to instant gratification and are satisfied with the photos as they are coming out of the camera or their smart phone. Not me.

In my profession, we don't take photos, we make fine crafted images only. What does that mean? It means that there are a lot of steps and hours involved in this process. This will be explained later in this blog. For one, photos are taken in RAW mode which is also known as "digital negative". In layman's term this is the equivalent of the film era where once you have taken a series of photos they are on the negatives rolled inside a cassette that is light tight and they need to be developed by a professional lab first. Most people are taking photos in JPEG mode which is equivalent of using a Polaroid film which is instantly developed after the photo is taken. It's like a final product, you get what you get.

The digital negative needs to be develop in the digital lab (computer) and then processed to deliver the best quality of color and true to reality. This does not happen automatically, the photographer has to do the work. Casual photographers take photos in JPEG mode and they are done. Professional photographers are achieving a much higher quality of images for a few reasons: the equipment is one factor but not the most important one, the expertise and the knowledge are key in this process (1).

Here how it works: when taking photos of a family on the beach, the photographer will constantly adjust the settings of his camera to match the conditions to get the optimal result and quality for each images. During a photo session, 300 to 500 images can be taken. Why? People are moving, expression in their face is changing, not everyone is on the same page all the time. But when taking several consecutive images of a group, chances are that one will turn out better than the rest. There are posed photos, there are action shots, there are changes in the light, settings and overall conditions that affect the outcome.

After the photo session, the photographer will review all the images and select in the first pass the best images, some will be very similar, he will reject the bad ones (someone with closed eyes for example). Next he will do a second pass comparing similar images and will pick the best of the set: people look, appearance, posture & gesture, smile, light and focus.

These "picked" digital negative files will then be post-processed (like the negative in the lab) to fix its contents, adjust the color and overall look of the images. Once the work in the digital lab is completed these images will then be shared with the client as "proof". The client is then asked to select the best of the best from these proof images. In general 50 to 75 images might be submitted for a beach family photo shoot. Other photo sessions can be very different. The client may choose 5 to 10 that they want to make an investment as large prints on paper, canvas or metal for example (2).

Then the photographer will do a final review of these images and perfect them, finesse them to make sure that the prints will be "finely crafted images" before sending them to the lab for printing or in-house printing. At that point when it comes to people, the corrections are basic, not Hollywood style like it is done for fashion photography or portrait. Beach photography is about authenticity, casual and familiar look, not beauty look (3).

What does all that mean in terms of time? Here are what the photographer does for a photo session on the beach: a) prepare equipment, camera(s), lenses, lights and accessories b) go to the location, meet client and takes photos, c) work in the digital lab to prepare the proofs, d) work with client to define the order, e) place the order and receive products, f) perform quality control and deliver products to client.

A 90 minutes photo session translates in  6 to 8 hours of work in total. That's the added value of a professional photographer, that's why our images are far better than the casual photographer, they are unique and extremely valuable to the client. You are making a serious investment in preserving memories, it's our responsibility to make it worthwhile.


Additional information (note):

(1) - Equipment and expertise: a race car driver can take a curve at 150 mph while you can barely do it at 50. Even if you have the same car, you know that you cannot take the curve at that speed, you don’t have the skills to do it. Same in photography: you can have a very fancy and expensive camera but that does not mean you will make great photos.

(2) - There a three ways to enjoy photos from your photo session: Sharing - having digital files that you can post on social media to share with family and friends; Reliving: viewing the images on your smart phone, computer or tablet; Preserving: having a beautiful large scale image on your wall that you can see every day. This framed portrait will give you this fuzzy feeling about the warm memories of the time together with your spouse and children.

(3) - Face retouching is a "sensitive" and delicate topic. Retouching Hollywood style means that all the little defects in your skin are removed, your face is glowing with perfection. All wrinkles, shadows and strong lines are soften. This process called "airbrush" takes a lot of skill and expertise to do it right and it also takes a lot of time and energy. This is not your typical post-processing, it's something special, it's costly too. This work is always done with a lot of communication and exchange with the client to ensure that the "airbrush" is done correctly, to the client liking, which is unique for each individual.


Jean-Marie Cote

Thefrenchguy photography 2015

[email protected] (thefrenchguy photography) Beach Photography Family Family Memories Post-processing Preserving Reliving Sharing Sat, 28 Mar 2015 18:43:02 GMT
Our New Studio in HHI Our new studio is now open and in full operation

Our studio, located on Hunter Road near the Airport of Hilton Head Island, with its 1200 sq. ft of floor space that is shared with my partner and wife Donna who is a very accomplished collage artist and fine art photographer. The studio is equipped with a small work shop and a nice matting and framing area for all our customers custom framing needs.

One section is totally dedicated to photography work. From individual to small group or family portrait in a relaxing, warm atmosphere where it is fun to be in front and behind the camera. Portrait session are available by appointment only. Please call 843-422-8122 for more information or email us at [email protected].

Photography and computer classes will be offered shortly that will address several people needs when it comes to using modern technology. These classes will be for the very beginner to the more advance photographer. Private session will also be offered for clients with specific and individual needs for learning. Do not hesitate to contact us for more information and to pre-register for these classes.

Next spring we will be offering something unique: practice your French while learning photography. Have you taken French speaking lessons in the past but never had a chance to really practice. Or have you spoken French in the past but lost most of it out of practice. Do you enjoy taking photos but finding that these new digital cameras are much more complex that you thought? Then this is for you. The emphasis will be on practicing French under the theme "Learning Photography". Your instructor, Jean-Marie Cote, thefrenchguy, is a native from Quebec Canada and French is his primary language. But don't worry, when needed, a few English words will be used to make your learning experience pleasant and enjoyable. Stay tune, more to come in a very special blog on this topic.

StudioLight set-upLight and White background for portrait session Studio Light set-upPortrait Photo SessionReady for an executive portrait session with an important personality of the Island StudioStudio overviewStudio Photography , framing area and art studio in the back Studio Framing AreaMatting and Framing AreaCustom Framing

[email protected] (thefrenchguy photography) Frame Framing Matting Pocket Wizzard Portrait Profoto Studio Thefrenchguy Sun, 24 Aug 2014 01:27:42 GMT