Michele Westmorlands Unique Tip on Packing Equipment for International Travel

Internationally recognized underwater photographer Michele Westmorland recently posted about here approach for packing her gear for international travel.

Who Needs a Pelican When You Have an Igloo?

I am often asked “How do I get all that equipment safely to location?” Diving adds an extra burden to the limits that are currently placed on those of us who travel to distant places. So here are a few tips that I have developed over the years to try and take a bit of the sting out it.

You know those shiny silver cases people often use to protect delicate camera equipment? Well, it’s unfortunate, but those branded cases such as Pelican are just too darned heavy and use up the precious pounds needed for the actual camera equipment. Another thing that bothers me about them is THEY SCREAM STEAL ME!

My solution for the past 15 or so years is a good old Igloo cooler. The 60 quart on wheels works fine but you do have to modify it a bit to secure it. By adding a little metal plate that has a loop on each side of cooler, zip ties can be used to secure the lid. The good news is that most people do not have a clue what is in the cooler and generally only ask if I have dead fish in it. I hope not!!! Is it pretty? Well, NO. But that is kind of the point.

Read moreMichele Westmorlands Unique Tip on Packing Equipment for International Travel

Some Breathaking Imagery by the Photographer Known As: ‘Volcanoman’

Brad Lewis is a photographer who lives on the edge; literally the edge of volcano’s where he captures some of the most amazing volcano images the world has seen.

For decades his imagery has graced the covers of some of the highest profile publications such as Life, Natural History, Geo, Natures Best, and appeared as well in National Geographic, Outside, Time, Newsweek, and many more.

I have seen his work published for years, and like many other photographers, wondered just how he captures his images in such seemingly dangerous conditions, so we decided to ask him.

Please tell us how you got started and how long you have been in the business.

Read moreSome Breathaking Imagery by the Photographer Known As: ‘Volcanoman’

The Seeds of Inspiration

Have you ever tried something, and it didn’t work?  Try a different idea, and not much success.

Not giving up, implement a third idea, the growth of which doesn’t occur?   What then, would inspire anyone to try again, to implement more ideas?

This past September along the hillside of our local state forest, the milkweed pods literally exploded in the late afternoon. Driven by the light westerly breeze, seeds were dispatched to commence their eventual germination.

In their own way, the successful seeds will ultimately provide the mechanism for change, allowing the monarch caterpillar to form its chrysalis, and then transform into the graceful monarch butterfly.

Read moreThe Seeds of Inspiration

Why You Should Always Get Paid Up Front

Have you ever had a client buy something from you and then not pay? If you have not then you are very lucky.

I got a call a two years ago from a small ‘one-person’ calendar publishing company who had seen my work around and needed some pictures for next years calendar.  We talked briefly about what he needed and he threw out some names of other photographers he had worked with, names I knew.

I sent him thumbnails and he picked two shots for the calendar and we settled on price.

I next sent him the two high resolution versions by ftp and followed two days later with an invoice.

A year and a half later I FINALLY got paid. Was I stupid by trusting a total stranger? Yep! These situations make me want to quit trusting the client and instead ask them to trust me. So I’ve changed my strategy, demanding as much as I can to get paid up front and here is how I handle it now.

Read moreWhy You Should Always Get Paid Up Front