Love me some Costco - great deals, yummy food, quality products. While shopping there with my daughters last weekend, I couldn't help but notice the great deal Costco has for Adobe's Photoshop Elements.
Most list the product for $139 (including Adobe), maybe as low as $99, but Costco has it for $79.99.
They only have it for Windows (didn't see a Mac version there), but so many of you are on PCs, and it's a great program to own. A must have piece of software for many photo enthusiasts wanting to get into Photoshop, but not interested in shelling out a ton for the full CS4 version -a version where they may only use a small percentage of the amazing functions available.
Let me start off by saying, I like Ashton Kutcher- enjoy 'Punked', like many of the movies he does, and think it's impressive to have the resumé he does at his age - nothing personal toward him.
And maybe he's making a lot of money for Nikon, but come on- what's with all the camera ads done by an actor who knows very little about photography? It would be like a fake doctor telling you what drugs to take. Or a lizard telling you what insurance to order, while tens of thousands of lizards sadly die every year, all without insurance.... a horrible but true fact.
I mean come on - all the women are following you 'cause you have that cool point-and-shoot? Yeah, right. I wish. If that was the case I would have been beatin' 'em off with a stick over the years (actually I got a pretty hot one for my wife, holding on to her for 16 years so maybe Ashton has a point). Hotties everywhere would have been chasing my rear all around Yosemite, the Grand Canyon, Southeast Asia, or Mexico.
"Hey Sean, whatcha got there? Ouuuu that's a big lens - do you know how to use it?" Yeah, I know how to use it- thanks for the compliments too- would you like me to teach you how to take great photos? Wait WAIT! What am I doing?! Back off because my wife opens a can of whoop-ass. Sorry, temporary man disease.
When it comes to lookin' pretty and acting, maybe you've got one on me Kutch. But when it comes to apertures and shutter speeds, flash and natural light, and just plain ol' having a killer eye to capture great shots, Ashton, you are out of your league my friend.
Sound like a jealous photographer? Not at all. He got where he got with hard work, and signed a probably lucrative contract to promote a product. I would have done the same thing. And that it's typical of Nikon to do this- to place no trust in their pros being able to sell their product, and instead grab a hip celeb and make some flashy ads. Shoot, I've used their gear since I was 11, believe in the product, been on the cover of the calendars, in their product guides (this year again), their Nikon World magazine, their trade shows, and so on, but they've never been nothing but rude and condescending to me. It's why I dropped my NPS membership (Nikon Professional Services) after 17 years - nothing but arrogant people who don't want to help their pros- all of this while Canon pros go on and on about how great Canon treats them and takes care of their needs.
As I said I would have done the same thing as A.K., but with a small difference. I've been published all over the world, captured images for hundreds of clients ranging from National Geographic to Timex, and proud to bring a solid portfolio to the table - a collection of images at 40 years of age I challenge any photographer to rival.
So here's my pitch to all the companies out there directly and indirectly involved in photography. Apple, Canon, Epson, Fuji, Kodak, Nikon, Minolta, Olympus, Promaster, Sigma, Tamron, and many many more - if you want a spokeman to promote your gear, if I were you I'd picked the Photoguru- but hell, don't even pick me - just pick someone with genuine clout in the industry.
Someone the pubic can say "Wow, that photographer knows how a capture amazing images - maybe they do know something I don't". And Ashton, I ain't got nuthin' but love for yah baby - and if you need to brush up on your photo-knowledge, I offer workshops every month.
Although I've never had the chance to own a German-made rangefinder Leica camera (always wanted to), I just wanted to share this dope Special Edition All-White Leica M8.
Sure it's around $8500 (ouch), the black and silver versions listing around $6500 (what a deal!) and the Safari camouflage version at ten grand, but at least you can tip your nose up as other peasant photographers capture images around you with their American and Japanese counterparts.
In all seriousness, Leica makes an amazing product, simple, clean, unassuming (I know, that's a bit ironic with the price tag, but most who aren't into photography don't realize the price or quality of it), and durable.
Made famous by photographers such as Henri Cartier Bresson and Diane Arbus, their lenses have been top-notch for years, and past models dating back to the 50s are always in demand (just type in Leicaon eBay and see for yourself).
If you just received your bail-out check or play shortstop for the Yankees, you can call Leica at 800-222-0118 in inquire about adding this cool 10.3 megapixel gem for your collection. Don't forget to go back to Congress when you need to buy a few lenses for it.
And when Leica sends me a free one, I'll test it out and add more info. :)