ALEX BUNTIN PHOTOGRAPHY: Blog en-us (C) Alex Buntin (ALEX BUNTIN PHOTOGRAPHY) Fri, 10 Jul 2015 19:04:00 GMT Fri, 10 Jul 2015 19:04:00 GMT ALEX BUNTIN PHOTOGRAPHY: Blog 120 96 Lightroom 101: Episode 1: How Lightroom Works Adobe Lightroom is a wonderful piece of software for photographers. Many new users, unfortunately, don't understand the way Lightroom works before they get started using it. The result is, later down the road, they accidentally lose data they thought they were backing up, or they end up with a jumbled mess of photographs spread out all over their computer, external drives, etc. The solution to those problems? Watch this video before you get started! As always, feel free to contact me with questions, comments, and suggestions for future videos.

(ALEX BUNTIN PHOTOGRAPHY) Adobe Lightroom does how lightroom photography software tutorials videos vidoes work works Sun, 01 Mar 2015 17:21:48 GMT
Lightroom 101: Episode 0: What is Adobe Lightroom? Viewers: Click here to sign up for a free 30 day trial of Adobe Lightroom! 

So, you're a new photographer (or you just switched to digital) and you've been hearing Adobe Lightroom mentioned a lot lately. All your photographer buddies have it, and you want to know what the heck it is and if you need to buy it, too. Sound about right? Well, you came to the right place! 

In this video, I show you what Lightroom is during a quick tour of the software and I give you the information you need to decide if it's a good solution for your needs. Please feel free to send me your questions, comments, and suggestions for future tutorials. Enjoy!

(ALEX BUNTIN PHOTOGRAPHY) 101 adobe introduction is lightroom software to tour tutorial video what Sun, 01 Mar 2015 16:30:52 GMT
Best Photoshop Settings for Highest Quality Edits

This article will walk you through how to set up Adobe Photoshop to get the highest quality files and the highest quality photo edits.

First let’s talk about our settings in Photoshop; specifically, the color settings.  To adjust color settings in Photoshop, go to Edit -> Color Settings.  When the dialogue box pops up, click the ‘More Options‘ button on the right to display all of your options.  Make a note of your original settings (or save them as a preset by clicking the ‘save’ button on the right) in case you’d like to revert to them later.  Next, change your settings to match these, paying special attention to the highlighted areas.  (Note:  Wondering about Color Space?  I won’t get into the details of what a ‘color space’ is, suffice for now to say that ProPhoto RGB gives us more to work with than sRGB or Adobe RGB while we edit our photos in Photoshop.  Screens and printers, however, cannot use this color space effectively, so before we print or upload, we’ll need to convert our images to sRGB).

color settings

Now any time you open a file in Photoshop (File -> Open) that isn’t already in the ProPhoto RGB color space, Photoshop will bring up a dialogue box asking you what to do, which will look like this:


Select “covert document’s colors to the workshop space” and click “OK.”

Your document will open up and you’re ready to work!  Make sure you do all of your work on separate layers (to create a new layer, go to Layer -> New Layer).  This ensures your background layer is preserved it’s original state, so you can go back to it later if necessary.  Keeping your work on separate layers allows for greater flexibility in your workflow and is always a good idea if you have enough storage space on your hard drives.  In this example, the retouching was done on many layers, but then all of the retouching layers were merged together into one layer to reduce the file size of the final master file.  The original layer remains untouched, as always.  The downside of merging your retouching layers into one layer is that you can’t go back later and make little tweaks to each adjustment or retouch layer.  The only upside is that your files will be smaller.  When possible, it’s better to preserve all of the separate layers in your mater files.

separate layers

If saving file space is a concern, and you are okay with the flexibility tradeoff of merging layers, go ahead merge them.  To merge layers together, shift click or control click to select multiple layers, and then go to Layer -> Merge Layers in the menu (shortcut: Cntrl/command + E).

When you’re done with all of your retouching, it’s time to save your master file.  Go to File -> Save As.  First select the location where you’d like to save your master file, and then select the file type.  Save your master file as Photoshop file(.PSD) as shown in this example: save as

Now we’ll create a copy of that master file that we can use to make derivatives.  Go to File -> Save As and save another copy of your mater file so we can use it risk-free.  Give this file another name or an extension you’ll recognize later, and so it saves as a separate file from the ‘original’ Master file.  We simply need an exact ‘copy’ of our Master so we can use it to safely make other files from.

Good.  Now that your Master file is safe and sound and we’re working on a copy, let’s use the master copy to create a JPEG file that we can upload to the internet, send via email, etc.  (Note:  It’s very important that you convert your color profile to sRBG before saving a JPEG intended for standard uses like the web, etc.  The ProPhoto color space we are working our Master files in is not suitable for normal purposes, so we must first convert to sRGB.  Remember:  Never skip step two!).

We’ll do this in 4 steps:  Flatten, Convert Color, Resize, Save.

1.  Go to Layer -> Flatten Image.  You’ll notice all of your layers merge into one layer.

2.  Go to Edit -> Convert to Profile.  In the “Destination Space” drop-down box, select “sRBG IEC61966-2.1″ and click “OK.”

3.  Go to File -> Automate -> Fit Image and enter 900 into both the width and height boxes.  This will resize your image, making sure that the longest side is no more than 900 pixels long (or whatever other value you enter into both the width and height boxes).  Note:  You can tick the “Don’t Enlarge” button to keep from accidentally upsizing a small file.

4.  Go to File -> Save As.  In the dialogue box that appears, select where you’d like to save your file, and then select “JPEG” (.jpg) as your file type, and click “Save.”

You’re done!  Go to File -> Close to close your master file copy.  Photoshop will ask you if you would like to save your changes.  Click “No.”

Want to speed up this process?  You can create an Action within Photoshop to do these steps for you automatically!  Stay tuned for a tutorial video on how to create your own Actions.

Also, as promised, stay tuned to the blog for an upcoming video tutorial on how to organize your photos and enhance your workflow using Adobe Bridge (bundled with Photoshop).


(ALEX BUNTIN PHOTOGRAPHY) adobe best editing photo photoshop retouching settings tips Mon, 12 Jan 2015 20:06:43 GMT
Glamor Model Photo Shoot: Hannah Orbik I recently decided to start making slideshows from my shoots and uploading them to YouTube as a bonus for my clients who want them. Here are some photos from my last couple of portfolio shoots with amateur model Hannah Orbik. You can find more photos of Hannah at


(ALEX BUNTIN PHOTOGRAPHY) glamor glamour model modeling photography portfolio portraits Mon, 12 Jan 2015 19:55:35 GMT
Facebook's New Terms: Why my best photos won't be on Facebook anymore You may have noticed people posting notices on their Facebook timelines in an attempt to protect themselves and their content from Facebook's new terms of service.  I brushed it off, at first, as another episode of Facebook updates policies and paranoid freak out, but it turns out there might be some merit to the concerns this time.  

After I suggested to my misguided friends that posting a paragraph on their timelines probably won't get them out of their legal contract with Facebook, I decided to find out what all their fuss was about this time. After reading the new terms for myself and growing a bit concerned at some of the language, I stumbled on this article from the American Society of Media Photographers (ASMP), which explained why professional photographers like myself ought to be concerned. It turns out that this time, Facebook's changes to their terms have actually directly affected us as professionals, especially those of us who license our work commercially (or hope to).  

Here is where the trouble lies; in the following excerpt from Facebook's Terms of Service:

"For content that is covered by intellectual property rights, like photos and videos (IP content), you specifically give us the following permission, subject to yourprivacy and application settings: you grant us a non-exclusive, transferable, sub-licensable, royalty-free, worldwide license to use any IP content that you post on or in connection with Facebook (IP License). This IP License ends when you delete your IP content or your account unless your content has been shared with others, and they have not deleted it."

What does that mean? Well, it means you have granted a license for Facebook to use your intellectual property however they want. While giving Facebook rights to our work might not bother some of us, the trouble comes when we want to sell an exclusive commercial license to an image later. As ASMP warns:

"...imagine that a client comes to you in a few months and wants to license an image from you for exclusive commercial use. If that image is posted on Facebook, you would not be able to offer exclusivity to that client because Facebook’s preexisting license to that image would be a conflict. If you were to go through with that agreement, you could be in breach of one contract or the other." 

The idea is; you grant Facebook a license to any image you post, which in effect means that you can not, by definition, "exclusively" license that image ever again.  As commercial photographers know, exclusive commercial licensing is usually the most lucrative use of an image. That is why, unfortunately, I am going to stop posting my best work on Facebook.  While I don't mind sharing my work with the world, I cannot afford to give up any future licensing rights to my work simply in order to share it.  

I understand that Facebook is not trying to steal my work. They aren't being malicious. They aren't trying to take money out of our pockets. My concern, however, is not their intent, it is their affect. This time, unfortunately, they really are potentially taking money out of our pockets.  

I tried to find out how to contact Facebook about these terms, but I couldn't find a way to contact support.  The best I could figure was send a message to Mark Zuckerberg. If you're on Facebook, send Mark a message and let him know how you feel about the new terms.  If you have a better way of contacting Facebook, please contact me and I will update this article.  


(ALEX BUNTIN PHOTOGRAPHY) artists commercial commercial licensing exclusive facebook intellectual intellectual property law legal musicians new facebook terms of photogaphy photographers professional property rights service terms terms of service Sun, 30 Nov 2014 13:49:00 GMT
Getting Started with Stock Photography What is stock photography?  


Stock photography refers to photography that has been created on speculation of later making a sale. The photographs are still marketed to buyers who need use of those photographs, typically for advertising and marketing purposes. These photographs are licensed based on one of two licensing models; royalty-free or rights-managed.

Stock photo by Alex Buntin

Stock Photo by Alex Buntin.



Royalty-Free vs. Rights-Managed


‘Royalty-free’ simply means that once the image is licensed, the licensee can use that image in an unlimited quantity and placement and for an unlimited term. In other words, the user has worldwide rights to that image for both physical and digital media, forever. You retain the copyright, but the licensee can pretty much do whatever they want with the image (as long as it isn’t pornographic or defamatory, usually).    


Rights-managed means that the terms of usage set with the licensee are specific. These terms are usually customized to fit the licensee’s needs. For example, you might license an image to be used only in a print brochure, at a specific size, in a run of less than 10,000. Any additional usage the licensee might require later would then need to be negotiated separately.  


The controversy surrounding microstock:


Is microstock a sustainable business model for photographers? Many photographers don’t think so. Clearly there are those who have made it work for them, but it’s the exception to make a full time income from microstock, not the rule. Many photographers believe that participating in the microstock industry undercuts the photography market in general. How do you feel about selling royalty-free rights to your images for as little as 10-20 cents each? What are some pros? What are some cons? What are some alternative options?  


The sustainable royalty-free stock movement


These agencies, sometimes called ‘midstock’ agencies, pay higher compensation to photographers, but still operate on the royalty-free model. These licenses tend to cost the buyer upwards of a couple hundred dollars (sometimes less for web-only licenses), and a high percentage of that fee goes to the photographer. Many photographers are choose to go only this route.  Others choose to put their less desirable image up for sale with microstock agencies, and put their higher quality images up for sale on higher paying sites or with traditional agencies. Two companies that fit this model are Stocksy and 500px Prime


Traditional stock agencies:


These agencies, sometimes called ‘macrostock’ agencies, are serious business. If you are an experienced photography with a vast, well-organized, and keyworded library of images, consider contacting a traditional agency. Examples are Getty Images and Alamy. More agencies can be found in the 2014 Photographer's Market. 


Marketing your own stock


Sites like and offer ways to license your work on a royalty-free commercial basis through your website.  They also allow you to set your own price for these licenses. The downside? You have to market your work yourself and drive traffic to your website, or nobody will know your images exist. So, you should be into marketing (or have someone on staff who is) if you are going to go this route.


Regardless of where you build a website, you can always show your work online and let potential buyers know that they need to contact you in order to get an estimate for licensing an image based on the specific usage they need. You can professional software tools like FotoQuote to generate an ‘industry standard’ rights managed usage license and demand top-dollar for your work


Your business, or your hobby?


A lot of photographers market their work in the microstock industry simply because they enjoy photography (or perhaps they are a professional) and they just want to make a few extra bucks on the side by uploading a few images here and there in their spare time. On the other end of the spectrum, some photographers earn a substantial with stock photography as their career focus. Where do you fall on this spectrum?  If you are interested in making stock photography part or all of your career, just like with any business, you should be very careful about tracking your expenses and income to enable you to better focus your resources and efforts as your business progresses.  


Videos to watch:

(ALEX BUNTIN PHOTOGRAPHY) agency alamy bigstock dreamstime fotolia getting started with stock photography getty istock istockphoto macrostock microstock microstock photography microstock photography debate photo shooting microstock shooting stock stock stock photography Mon, 10 Nov 2014 01:35:55 GMT
A Runner, A Face Full of Hair, and a Stylish Young Man I found myself with the day off on Wednesday this week and decided it would be fun to set up an impromtu photo shoot with whoever else was available on short notice. A couple of members from The Photo Guild of Lafayette, IN and myself along with models Adam and Kendra shot from 6p-sunset. We started at Second Level Studios and finished on the footbridge between Lafayette and West Lafayette. Here are a few of my favorites from the shoot...

Model Kendra Cox poses for The Photo Guild at Second Level Studios in Lafayette, IN.Model Kendra Cox poses for The Photo Guild at Second Level Studios in Lafayette, IN.                   



(ALEX BUNTIN PHOTOGRAPHY) club guild indiana lafayette learn lighting photo photographer photography portrait portraits strobist studio Sat, 16 Aug 2014 00:27:03 GMT
500px offers commercial licensing, treats photographers right. recently announced that it has enabled commercial licensing features on a new platform dubbed 500px Prime. The good news? Photographers wishing to license their images commercially can now do so via 500px Prime. 

The even better news?  Photographers will get 70% of licensing fees - as it should be. Originally, 500px announced that it would only offer 30% of commercial licensing fees to photographers, but after an outcry from would-be contributors, they switched the 30/70 split in favor of 500px to a 70/30 split in favor of photographers. Thanks for listening, 500px! 

The even even better news? 500px isn't engaging in what they call the 'race to the bottom,' that is, competing with other stock agencies on price alone. They acknowledge the damage that stock agencies undercutting photographers is doing to the industry, and they are aiming to help reverse it. Commercial royalty-free licenses are $250 per photo, which allows for fair compensation to contributing photographers.

Finally, a royalty-free stock contract I can live with!

Ready to submit your photos? Click here to read a list of 500px Prime's frequently asked questions, including how to submit your photos. If you already have an account with 500px and have photos uploaded that you'd like to submit, click here to go straight to where you can submit your uploaded photos, which looks like this...  

Until next time, Good Light, and Good Luck! Follow Alex Buntin on 500px

(ALEX BUNTIN PHOTOGRAPHY) 500px agencies agency contract contributing contributors fair licensing online photographers photography photos prime questions royalties royalty-free sell selling stock submitting sustainable Mon, 28 Jul 2014 23:08:36 GMT
August Headshot Special This August, Alex Buntin Photography of Lafayette, Indiana is offering 20% off all studio headshot sessions!

Image isn't everything, but let's face it, these days in the online world, where first impressions are made daily by a profile picture alone, having a great headshot has never been more important.  Headshots are a necessity for professionals of all types and a great one can give you a real edge on your competition and help communicate your brand and message to your clients.  

Ready to book?  Contact us to book your session today!

Got questions?  Click here for a list of frequently asked questions


Phone: (317)397-0306

Your headshot session can take place either in-studio here in Lafayette, or on-location wherever your needs require (or both!).  Have special needs or requests?  Questions? Ready to book?  Contact us now! We don't bite :) 


(ALEX BUNTIN PHOTOGRAPHY) coupons deal deals headshots indiana lafayette photographer photographer lafayette in portrait portrait photographer lafayette in portraits Tue, 22 Jul 2014 01:00:13 GMT