Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Site Issues

We are currently having some odd things happening with the site, including spam links being inserted in existing posts and posts being removed/shifted around. We’re working hard to figure out what caused it, to prevent any further issues, and to fix the problems that currently exist. Please bear with us… Thanks!

-Tucker, Andrew and Giacomo

Like us on Facebook!

We finally got around to making a Facebook page for our site! The 3 of us will continually update and check it and we hope it can be a place for people to feel comfortable commenting, contributing, critiquing, whatever… we just want to interact with our friends and those who read our blog and like our work. You can use the right-hand sidebar object to like us, or you head on over to TAG’s Facebook page to check it out!

I’ve got a bunch more material and a lot of it is half-processed but have no fear, many more updates are in the future! I spent my free time today working on the Facebook page but hopefully soon I’ll be able to put up some new content.

*All that time I spent adding captions to my picture? Down the drain… Facebook decided I didn’t need captions so it just deleted everything I’d done. The pictures are still there, but all of the links back to the site are gone. I’ll fix that ASAP but it is a pain to go and find each one…

The Forbidden City

Well the photos are getting few and far between but that just means everyone’s a little busier than they realize. Which can definitely be a good thing but it also means getting fresh content on T.A.G. is a little trickier. We’ve said before that we could always just line up a bunch of “meh” material and have it set to auto-post one a day for the next month but we decided a while back we’d rather work for longer periods of time on individual posts and try and keep the quality of work higher, even if it means long stretches of inactivity. SO… that being said, here’s the next image to come out of China. Ta-da, the Forbidden City.

Having visited the Forbidden City earlier in the week, we were on the fence over whether to go back… the weather was kind of clearing up but could we risk sneaking all of our documentary equipment past security again? We took a go-big-or-go-home stance and stripped down the camera package again to what felt like less than the bare minimum and made for the security checkpoint. Our efforts paid off and as we watched them roll our bag down the X-ray belt we knew we’d avoided complete disaster for the second time that week.

As you can see, this is a “clear” day…

I’m not sure what the awareness level is out there, but I for one had no appreciation for the horrible air quality in Beijing until we got off the plane had noticed we had a visibility of about 300 yards in the city. The pollution turns the air to absolute muck and poses a very obvious challenge for photography — how to take pictures of the place without making it look so nasty. HDR can only do so much, but on this particular occasion, I was so thankful to have legitimately good (good by Beijing standards) weather with discernible clouds instead of the omnipresent gray haze.

Amazing place, I really didn’t realize how big the compound is until I walked across it. There’s this famous courtyard of course but tons of gardens and surrounding courtyards to this one that lead to it… it’s a huge place and after sweating our way through it, we couldn’t say no to watermelon on a stick for about $0.14: Beijing, China.

Minor Site Updates and Progress

No image today, unfortunately, but I’ve been hard at work behind the scenes, adding a few more desktops to the new Desktop page, and doing some tweaks to the site. Most of the time I spent making changes to the Comments system. With close to 100 visitors a day, many of whom are unique but the majority of which are returning, it would be great to have some comments on our posts! I got a tip from some one who said it would be better if a name and email weren’t required to comment. I agree with this of course, and being rather new at this whole web thing still was unaware that I could change that so easily. So, for the time being, you no longer need to do ANYTHING except write your comment and it will appear! I say for the time being because I have no idea how this will affect spam. The site has received 20 comments that have been approved as legitimate people, and over 900 that have been automatically blocked as spam, which is sad, to say the least. We will see…. I am attempting to find the balance between making it easy for actual readers to post, and at the same time keeping the spam at bay. I have also re-labeled the link at the bottom of each post; it used to read “No Comments” which is rather confusing, as it was not obvious that to comment you needed to click this. Now it is much more descriptive. I will have a new HDR to post tomorrow; I have revamped the “What is HDR? A Quick Overview” page and have a new HDR to go with it. The new page will walk you briefly through the steps that I took to create it, showing before and after images, and be a bit more in depth than it was before. I think there are still  a few more I can dig up before I am really, truly out of material and will be “forced” to stop being lazy and get out there and shoot (which can only be a good thing.)

New material soon…

So with the first few weeks of school picking back up I honestly can’t think of a time when I’ve been busier than I am right now. This is good because it means new stuff is constantly happening and you never suffer from boredom (kind of a rare occurrence in LA but it has been rumored to crop up every once in a while). Lately my crew commitments to my colleagues’ various student films have eaten my weekends entirely and when I’m not squeezing 18 units out of 3 days of class I’m working an internship. Honestly, the only downside right now is that it’s really hard to find time to sit down and process images, not to mention going out and shooting new stuff. I understand we’ve been having steadily increasing traffic recently so I’m really going to make an effort to get some new material up in the next couple of days (or at least rework some older shots that deserve to be on the site but have yet to appear.) In the meantime, please check out the mind-numbingly amazing concept of HDR video that was recently demonstrated by SovietMontage…

Not Dead

I’m not dead, just disgustingly busy it seems. Haven’t been out to shoot in close to 3 weeks 🙁

But, park hopper on Sunday so I’m looking forward to my first attempt at some Disneyland magic, hopefully something akin to this little piece of gold.

Neat stuff right? Here’s hoping…

Need a Change of Venue…

I’ve been swamped. It’s tough to find time to go out and get good stuff from all over and lately all I’ve been able to do is pop over to the lot on my lunch break and squeeze off a few shots of random stuff. Hopefully this weekend will present some opportunities to branch out somewhere new or revisit an old favorite…

Site Changes

Soon we will have our own domain name! When this happens I will repost the site on Facebook etc so people can see. It will make everything better in terms of Google finding us, and plus, having our own domain is just cool especially since it is so cheap these days.

I am headed out of town for two days and probably won’t do too much shooting or updating during that time, and Giacomo is headed to Italy for 6 weeks or so… I’m sure he will get some fantastic stuff while there. Andrew I’m sure will continue to post from LA, and when I get back I hope to explore some new parts of Atlanta to put up on the site. And when I get back, I will decide which lens(es) I want to buy; the Canon 100mm f/2.8L macro, 85mm f/1.8, and 50mm f/1.2 are all options I am considering. For now, time to go pack 🙂

UPDATE – I had some time in the Albany airport so I messed around with a few things on the back end. Categories now appear as links as they should, and the site is a better size. Working on more changes to come.

Our Discovery of HDR Photography – Inspired by Trey Ratcliff

Hey everyone. We are three college students who got into photography in high school and have recently started experimenting with the HDR process. We were inspired by the awesome work on HDR pioneer Trey Ratcliff’s website, www.stuckincustoms.com . Trey has really brought HDR into the mainstream and caused many people, including ourselves, to consider the process one of the best ways to accurately show a scene. The three of us will regularly update this with our own unique High Dynamic Range images both ones that we have made in the past and ones we are in the process of creating. Be sure to check back frequently for fun shots and insights into our own worlds of photography, and if for some odd reason you have stumbled upon our budding website before looking at Trey’s, be SURE to head to Stuck In Customs for an engrossing visual treat.

Our site will improve greatly over a short period of time so be sure to check back. Thanks for stopping by and be sure to tell your friends about us if you like what you see!

-Tucker Bair, Andrew Stowe, and Giacomo Waller