It looks like my site was down for a day or two. My host was retiring a server and had to transfer me to one of their newer ones. It looks like they must have done some things by hand which resulted in my site CMS not being able to connect to the database. It was an easy fix, but I didn’t pay attention to which day they were doing the transfer (and didn’t verify it worked afterward).

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Editing Tip: Using a game controller to review and cull photos.

In this video I go over using a PS4 DualShock controller when reviewing and culling photos. It’s an ergonomic and quick way to go over large numbers of photos in your initial review process. In my case I use Adobe Bridge CS5, which has limited support for keyboard shortcuts.

You can use whatever controller you want as long as you have the ability to mimic keyboard inputs. The DS4Windows program I use has full macro support, which is great.

Here is how I have mine set up:
– D-pad
= The arrow keys on the keyboard so you can navigate through the photo list.

– top triggers
== no rating, 5 star rating
== CTRL+0 and CTRL+5

– top buttons
== left is -1 rating, right is +1 rating
== CTRL+, and CTRL+.

– triangle button
== show only 5 star rating in the photo list

– x button
== clear the photo list filter

– square button
== -1 thumbnail size

– circle button
== +1 thumbnail size

– the trackpad works as the PC mouse

Here are a few extras I added after making the video:
– left analog joystick up
== jumps to top of photo list
== home key

– left analog joystick down
== jumps to bottom of photo list
== end key

The PS4 controller drivers:

Adobe Bridge shortcut list:

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2015 Botanic Gardens Cosplay

I attended an event hosted by my convention/photographer/cosplayer friends “Cosplayer With A Camera” and Hikikomori Sama at the Chicago Botanic Gardens. They have had the event there for a number of years, but this might be the last. The garden has some pretty restrictive policies on photography, which makes things difficult for us. This year they tightened the policies even more and we had some aggressive staff on carts show up toward the end of the night. The garden itself is really large and beautiful, which is of course great for the pictures we take.

Here are a few highlight photos from the event:

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All I brought for the event was the Nikon D600 and 50mm f1.8g lens. It’s a nice combination that allows you do a decent amount without the extra bulk and hassles. Along with that, the overcast skies helped a lot with getting nice photos. Shade and uniform outdoor light are great for simple natural photos that don’t need much editing afterward.

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June Starved Rock Photoshoot

My friend and fellow photographer Kings Cosplay set up a photoshoot at Starved Rock State Park in Utica, IL. Though we had our fair share of issues such as part of the park flooding, we did manage to get a decent amount of time to take photos. Besides getting some photography in, I enjoyed the exercise and scenic views!

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I brought a pretty simple camera kit. The Nikon D600 along with a 28mm f1.8 and 70-210mm f4 lens. I also brought a single flash, but only used that for around 5 photos. My go-to for most of the event was the telephoto. I like the photos out of that ~$200 old used 1980s telephoto lens just as much as anything else. The lens is weirdly shaped, ugly, and with old school screw-drive AF, but does the job well.

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