Category: Product Reviews

Microstock Analytics – Deep Dive into your sales

In previous posts I have reviewed the use of Microstockr Pro for monitoring your sales and how I used it to find images that were selling well but missing from one of the main agencies. There is an alternative application on the market that promises far more detail about your portfolio and so I decided to investigate Microstock Analytics in more detail. This is a far more complex system aimed at really understanding which shots are selling and why, whereas...

StockSubmitter – an elegant replacement for StockUploader

As many readers know I have been using StockUploader for 3 or 4 years and it has always served me well. However, it has not been publicly available for at least 12 months and will be totally unavailable at the end of the year. So what should new stock photographers do? The answer has also become more complex for me because of the need to identify and prioritize the first seven keywords to fit in with Adobe Stock’s process and...

Sensor cleaning problems with Sony A7r II

I noticed a relatively prominent sensor spot on some of my images after my last field trip – one of the potential issues with mirrorless cameras is that there is nothing between the lens opening and the sensor and so changing lenses is always going to have the risk of introducing dust. Anyway, I used my trusty Visible Dust Arctic Butterfly which works by using static in the fine brush strands to pick up the dust from the sensor, but...

My Canon Gear on sale!

I’ve put my Canon gear up for sale, but if anyone wants to buy directly from me, please get in touch via sales at backyardsilver.com. The macro lens has already been sold so I still have: Canon 16-35mm F4 L IS USM lens with hood: $895 Canon 1.6x Extender II with lens caps: $255

Using Canon speedlite flash on Sony A7R

I have four Canon flashes (three 550EX and one 580EX) as well as the Canon ST-E2 infra-red controller. With my change of camera outfit from Canon to Sony, the next question is whether I can effectively use these flash guns with the Sony? There is a great article by Tim Ford, where he concludes that an optical flash adapter is the best way of getting the highest sync speeds, but he is using the 580EX II – mine are the...

Move from Canon to Sony after 10 years…

I’ve finally decided to give my back a rest and move to a slightly smaller camera kit, hopefully without sacrificing quality along the way! As a result, all my Canon stuff will be going and making room for a new Sony A7R ii body plus 16-35mm F4, 24-70mm F4 and 70-200mm F4 Sony lenses. I decided to go this way rather than buy a lens adapter and use my Canon lenses partly for convenience and weight and partly because those...

Building a new Photography PC – lessons learned!

After a great set of earnings in August (OK, perhaps that isn’t altogether true…), I decided the time was right to build a new computer for my photography. My current PC was bought refurbished in 2010 and although I added more memory, it was increasingly slow when I wanted to move between the panels in Lightroom and even loading an image for editing seemed to take a few seconds. Frustrating! I saw this article by a fellow photographer Nasim Mansurov...

Sony RX10 – perfect for travel stock photography?

As I’ve probably mentioned before, my main camera kit is a Canon 5D Mk3, with the 24-105mm F4, 16-35mm F4 and 70-200mm F4 lenses. I also normally carry a 1.4x converter and 50mm F1.4 lens as well. All in all, quite a load on my back, but I like the flexibility that I can get with the lenses and the high quality of the results, even at higher ISOs and if I need to crop. The trip to Equatorial Guinea...

Black Friday – Photographing Food Magazines on Sale

I reviewed this earlier in the year – I really enjoyed reading each of the issues of Taylor Mathis’ Photographing Food series. I haven’t seen his videos (to be honest I don’t like watching instructional videos much), but I thought the separate eBooks were interesting and thought provoking, but expensive. I noticed that Taylor has a special Black Friday sale on his site with 55% off – Friday through Monday. If you are interested in having a relaxing read and...

Update on the Gold”n”Blue filter

A few months back I wrote about my experience with the Singh-Ray Gold’n’Blue polarizing filter. Some people rightly made the point that it was expensive and the use of filters in Photoshop (or plugins) could do the same. I’m not so sure and recently used it in my trip to Tampa and surrounding area. On the boiling hot and humid day that is a Florida summer, I tend to minimize the equipment I carry and so I put my new...