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For the Love of Photography

chasejarvis_davewithgullsSeems like the more I listen, the more I hear people talking about the gear, the business of photography, the widgets. Let us not forget the simple love of photography.

I understand why there’s so much rhetoric in our industry about the business of photography and the gear and the gadgets. There is the common stereotype that most creative people aren’t good business people. There is fear. Gear is easier to talk about than vision. Exposures are exact, the camera dials have numbers. There is a ‘right’ answer to many of these questions.

But where is your love of pictures? Where are your actions that back this up?

Can you pick up a book of photographs and get lost in it?
Can you walk around with your iPhone or Android or your point and shoot or whatever and take 100 pictures knowing that they’ll never be for a client or a portfolio?
Do you love hunting for pictures?
Will you stay up late or get up early for pictures?
Do you sometimes ‘see’ life as a photograph?

It’s different for all of us, but when you can take a break from all the chatter, remind yourself–as often as you can–why you love photography.

Photo of the Day: Gorilla Loose in Telluride Colorado

chasejarvis_telluride

At its root, this blog is about photographs. So here’s one I snagged last night with my iPhone at sunset from the always-epic Telluride, Colorado. Anybody spot the gorilla face in the picture?

[btw, As I mention the gorilla face... Photo gear is good, but vision is better. TODAY starting at 11am Seattle time--and throughout the weekend--a must see. Join us LIVE for FREE over at www.creativeLIVE.com as we bring you a masters-series weekend with David Duchemin, award winning photographer and author of the best selling photo books Within the Frame and VisionMongers. How to "see" pictures and pursue your dreams in photography isn't just something you're born with - they are skills you can learn. Register here now for free, join us all weekend long!]

Come Watch: LIVE shoot with Sarah McLachlan TODAY

sarah mclachlan laws of illusionUPDATE: If you missed our Sarah McLachlan video shoot/performance there’s a re-broadcast of the internet feed here on YouTube. Check it!

First we kicked off chasejarvisLIVE, then creativeLIVE… so you figured out I really dig this LIVE thing. Well, today, I’m excited to share that I’ve also been working hard with a little coffee company down the street called Starbucks to help bring you StarbucksLIVE. To kick this off, I’m TODAY at 12 noon PDT (3pm NYC time) doing a LIVE photo/video shoot with multi-platinum, Grammy award-winning musician, Sarah McLachlan. Sarah will be performing live from a little nook inside the Starbucks headquarters here in Seattle, and we’ll have a few cameras and a few mics pointed at her.

WHAT YOU’LL SEE: In our typical style, the setting should be pretty relaxed. We’ve set up a baby grand piano, some basic lights and cameras and we’re going to make some great video images while Sarah plays from her new album, Laws of Illusion. Besides Sarah’s beautiful performance, the other thing you’ll see is me and my crew actually working. How bout that. This is the real deal. If you tune in a little early you’ll get to see us Continue Reading →

New iPhone Photos in My Portfolio: Be My Editor

I began posting portfolios of images shot with my iPhone more than two years ago now. And my love affair isn’t wearing off, it’s growing stronger. The best camera still is–and always will be–the one that’s with you.

I post iPhone snapshots everyday to my twitter, facebook, and www.thebestcamera.com, but I haven’t updated my iPhone portfolio page in quite some time.

Until yesterday.

I dug through a huge pile of images and completely refreshed the gallery with some new favorites. Scott and I are in a little disagreement as to which ones are hot and which ones are not. As such, I’d love some of your targeted feedback. Please visit my new iPhone portfolio page here and tell me in the comments below which image is your most favorite AND which is your least favorite image. We’ll did this crowd-sourced edit once before and it was really helpful. We’ll make some changes if a pattern emerges.

Since there’s work involved in your edit, I’ll give some shoutouts and send a signed book or three to some randomly selected people who are willing to lend a hand with editing thoughts. Thanks in advance for your time. Continue Reading →

Best Camera Thanks You. Big Big Bigtime.

I slept 4 hours in a 65 hour stretch.

…that was in the couple days before and after launching The Best Camera ecosystem. But I loved it, because working hard to create stuff feels good. It’s not everyday that you get an opportunity to launch a book, or an iPhone app, or an online community, let alone all three. The experience has been exciting, humbling, scary and energizing all at once, and I owe a huge debt of gratitude to you.

Thanks in large part to this community, in the first 24 hours after launch:
_Best Camera app debuted at #12 of all paid apps in the app store.
_The Best Camera Is The One That’s With You book, debuted at #172 of all titles on Amazon
_ www.thebestcamera.com saw 200,000 sets of eyes.

…And since that first 24 hours, it’s been getting better by the hour. Wow. I am humbled. And I Thank you thank you thank you.

Launch is fun, but it’s where we want to go with this thing now that’s important in the big picture.

Overall, I want to continue to celebrate pictures. I want to continue to grow thebestcamera.com and the visualizer in the app, into a seriously remarkable place for viewing pictures. I am blown away by what I see there everyday as you’ve been choosing www.thebestcamera.com in the sharing menu. There are currently hundreds of pictures being added there every hour. If you haven’t stared at that thing, and if you haven’t been voting from your phone (ie giving the thumb’s up) to images you like, the community has been missing your input. Give it a shot…[click the 'continue reading' link below]

For those of you who were rightly concerned about the Facebook captioning issue, apologies abound. It was an unintended hiccup that inserted a placeholder caption ‘uploaded with Chase Jarvis’ Best Camera’. We missed removing it during testing. You should know that we fixed it within 24 hours of launch and subsequently re-submitted the refreshed code to the app store for approval. Simple work arounds are listed in the FAQ’s.

For those who want to upload to Flickr: every Flickr account has an email addy for uploading. Send to that address from the share menu in the app. More elegant solutions soon ;)

Of course there are a million ways for us to improve what we’ve created, many of which we’re already aware. If you’ve got ideas or suggestions, I want them. I am listening. That said, please don’t put them in the comments below. We’re collecting your ideas via the submission form on the support page.

While we’re gathering feedback, I don’t want to look too far into the future or into the past. After all this ecosystem is still only 2.5 days old. What I’m really hoping for is that we focus on using this shiny new toy. Just like your mobile phone camera has one button and you can have lots of fun and discover what’s possible with that one button, I’d love for you to crank on our version 1.0 of Best Camera and see what you can make it do for you. Have fun with it.

For those in this community who have written me asking how you might help this app further succeed, the answer is pretty simple: 1. tell your friends online and in the real world; and 2. rank the app and write a (hopefully glowing ;) review in the iTunes app store. That’s in large part how other people in the world discover and buy apps.

And the same goes for the book….the initial rounds of The Best Camera Is The One That’s With You are beginning to arrive on your doorstep from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Borders. For those of you who sent email and asked to further help out…just like the app, please tell your friends and rate/review on Amazon, B&N;, Borders. Thank you thank you.

Lastly, wanted to remind you that on Monday, September 28, I’m choosing my favorite picture that’s been uploaded to www.thebestcamera.com and giving its creator a brand new, unlocked (yes unlocked) iPhone 3Gs loaded with the Best Camera app. I’ll ship it anywhere in the world. Hope to see your photos there this weekend.

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Best Camera: iPhone App + Book + Community

Today I’m really pumped to share with you the results of many months of hard work, a whole lotta fun, and–in many ways–a dream come true. It’s a trifecta of projects that I’ve just launched moments ago:

Introducing:

1. Best Camera = An iPhone photo app that allows you to shoot, add creative effects, and share your images more simply and powerfully than ever before. Virtually limitless creativity, and the ability to share photos directly from Best Camera to Facebook, Twitter, via email at a new iPhone photo sharing site, www.thebestcamera.com. I’ve poured all my experience into creating this app, and I’ve partnered with my ubersmart software developer friends, Ubermind, to bring you Best Camera. Read more and/or buy it from iTunes here.

2. The Best Camera Is The One That’s With You = A book of my iPhone photography from around the world. The first of its kind. It’s both a playful celebration of mobile photography and a serious artistic endeavor. It’s the production of my ideas and the way I see the world. It’s real and it’s RAW. I hope you dig it. Learn more and/or buy it here on preorder now – should be shipping this week.

3. www.thebestcamera.com = This is the hub of this ecosystem and a new photo community. It gives you the how-to videos for the app, the nuts and bolts of the book and is the support and feedback center. But most importantly, it’s a living, breathing feed of images from around the world created with Best Camera iPhone app. From within the app share your iPhone work here at the first photo community of its kind. Buy the app, login from your iPhone and join the revolution.

That’s right–you’re getting the picture–each of these elements is tied together with that goofy-but-strangely-sticky phrase I inadvertently coined rallied a while back, “The Best Camera Is The One That’s With You”. This is the first ecosystem–app, book, community–of its kind, and I’ve put a heckuva lot of work into creating it. I’m dying to know what you think.

A complete video tour, some informative links and a free, unlocked iPhone 3Gs after the jump… [click the 'continue reading' link below]

If you buy the app, book, or both and like what you see and experience, please consider doing the following things:

a. Tell your friends. Unlike my commercial photography, this is entirely a community-based endeavor and it depends on your patronage and good will to succeed. If you believe in this, please spread the word.

b. Rate the app and the book at iTunes and Amazon or wherever you purchase. Being in your favor is in large part an indicator of how good of a job I’ve done in creating this ecosystem, and it tells those who aren’t in your immediate network what you think. I want it to be fun and I want it to be good and I want it to evolve. Your feedback matters.

c. Participate in the community. Snapping photos everyday with my iPhone changed my life. I am more in touch creatively now than ever before. It’s contagious in the very best way, from professional artists to my 63-year-old mother. Take pictures and share them. It can change the world.

And here’s some fun that might get your attention: On Monday Sept 28th, I’m choosing my favorite image that’s been created using Best Camera and posted to www.thebestcamera.com , and I’m giving away a brand new, unlocked iPhone 3Gs, loaded with the Best Camera app. That’s right. I look at your pictures, I like one, and then give you an unlocked iPhone 3Gs loaded with my app. Can’t wait to see your photos.

Here’s a video tour of the iPhone app Best Camera:

Lastly, lots more details and behind the scenes to come this week. Until then, some helpful links:

[Buy Best Camera app via iTunes.]
[Buy The Best Camera Is The One That’s With You via Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or Borders.]
[Visit www.thebestcamera.com, the hub that tells you more about the app, the book, and the community.]
[Visit the new iPhone portfolio on my website, created entirely using Best Camera.]
[Big thanks to the gentlemen of Mad Rad for their track on the video. Buy their beats on iTunes here.]
[And of course a huge thank you to my development partner Ubermind, and my book publisher Pearson/Peachpit. You guys/gals rock.]


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Amazing Photo of The Moon with iPhone



[UPDATE: Martin has chimed in with more details and original photos...all info after the jump].

After reading the headline of this post and looking at the image, you’re probably waiting for the other shoe to drop. What’s the catch? Well, there isn’t one. Yes, my pal Martin Gisborne used only an iPhone 3Gs and a telescope to get this shot. He did some slight tweaking in Aperture, but no crazy-fancy space cameras, no Photoshop, no compositing, no gimmicks. Pretty impressive. The best camera is the one that’s with you.

[By contrast, last spring I was dorking around and also shot an image thru a telescope. My results were, er... let's say, less interesting. That image after the jump...]

Here’s my laughable shot:

Not nearly as powerful a telescope…

[And here's Martin's addendum, just cut and pasted from his email to me...Thanks Martin!]
…Here’s the scoop:

1) Exposure was simply controlled using tap to focus/expose.
2) The telescope was a modest 80mm William Optics Zenithstar II… only 545mm focal length. I used a 20mm Plossl eyepiece in a 2″ diagonal.
3) The iPhone was handheld – which was the most challenging part… getting the lens in alignment over the eyepiece without moving the scope.
4) The size of the moon in the frame came from using the 20mm eyepiece on the telescope.

This is the original frame from my iPhone… you can see that it’s not BAD exactly as it is:

This is the image cropped in Aperture:

This is the cropped image with Levels applied:

This is with Definition applied:

And, lastly, this is with Edge Sharpen applied, no external plug ins used:

[Thx again for the play by play, Martin.]

Get my every move: Follow Chase Jarvis on Twitter
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And My iPhone Goes to… (BTW, Check Out This Gallery)

Omar Shine, for this killer image here. Great composition, color, and story. Points for abstraction. Congrats Omar. Everyone please shower him with praise. Omar is from the great country of Canada, so it’ll be up north that I’m mailing my phone. (Omar, please contact me offline about getting it to you.)

IMPORTANT: in addition to Omar’s winning shot, there were 3500 images submitted in just a couple of days, with some absolutely stunning work therein. Seriously. As such, I have posted a gallery of my favorite one hundred images with photographer names on each. This gallery is REMARKABLE. Please pay a visit. A good chunk of this work stands up to a lot of the work I see in the industry, regardless of the the platform, mobile or otherwise. Pat yourselves on the back. And thanks for the fun.

[And btw, a personal aside: I found out my mom and dad entered some spoof images in the contest too. Scroll back thru the whole Facebook gallery of submissions if you want to see images of a strange goat tied to a car and a cactus shaped like a rabbit. my parents are funny and cooler'n hell...]
[Lastly, in case you missed it, this entry is the result of this earlier post.]

Who Wants My iPhone?

UPDATE: The winner has been chosen, check out the gallery of the top hundred or so entries.

I’m the proud owner of a new iPhone 3Gs. That said, I’ve got my last iPhone, this lovely black 16GB 3G (pictured here), that I’ll no longer be using. Don’t get me wrong…I love this little sucker. I’ve lugged it over 200,000 air miles, literally around the world, and it’s taken all the daily iPhone pics that you’ve seen on my Twitter feed and Facebook fan page. She’s still in tip-top shape. It’s dear to me, but it’s time for me to give it to you.

In exchange, I want to see your photos (in the spirit, we’ll limit it to mobile devices only…iphone or any other camera phone – honor system here…) posted to my Facebook fan page. You’ve got till 12 noon on Tuesday 6/23, my time (GMT -8). On Tuesday the give away will close, I’ll pick my favorite image from all those uploaded and I’ll give that person my beloved iPhone 3G. Announced Wednesday 6/24.

To participate, you’ve got to:
1. ‘Become a fan’ on my Facebook fan page. (NOT my personal page, but the FAN page. Follow that link…)
2. Under the “wall” tab in the ‘what’s on your mind’ window atop the page, write your name and a url if you’d like.
3. In that same window, directly below where you just wrote your name, click on the ‘add photos’ icon.
4. Upload your favorite mobile image. No limit to the number of entries. Anyone can enter, from anywhere in the world.
5. When you win, I’ll send you my iphone in the mail. Easy peasy.

[I'd love to see some community love here. Don't be a miser. Please share this. It's really about pictures and not about the phone. Also, if you've got time, visit the Fan gallery and click 'like' to any images that inspire you. This isn't part of the giveaway, but it seems like a nice way to look at some pretty pictures and maybe make somebody's day.]
[Lastly, images in my iPhone gallery, shot with the iphone in question, are here. Chk 'em.]


iPhone 3GS Is The Photographer’s iPhone

In case you haven’t heard the news, the best camera is the one that’s with you, like in your pocket right now. For yours truly and anybody else who can part with $200-$300, that will on June 19th be the newly announced iPhone 3GS. Looks like this will be an amazing little tool for those of us interested in taking pictures and shooting video when our dSLR’s are outta reach.

In case you missed it, here’s a brief recap of the hot new photo and video specs for the iPhone 3GS:

Photo:
- 3 megapixel camera
- low light capture modes
- autofocus
- autoexposure
- OR tap to focus, allowing focus and white balance adjustment on the fly
- auto macro lens (up to 10cm away)

Video:

- 30 frames per second VGA video
- auto focus
- auto white balance
- auto exposure

Other handy stuff for us photo/video geeks:

- 16 and 32 GB storage
- faster processor
- cut and paste multiple photos into email, etc
- multimedia messaging (send photos via sms/text)

I dunno about you, but I’m pumped. All that in your pocket – always. LOVE to hear your thoughts. For photos highlighting some of these features, plus some additional snazzy chatter hit ‘Continue Reading’ link below…

Here’s a highlight photo from the WWDC just moments ago of the “tap to focus” selective focus option:

Here’s a demo image of the auto macro setting in effect (to 10cm):

Here’s a demo image highlighting the low light capabilities:

Here’s a demo shot of video mode:

And here’s a shot of video sharing mode:

Hope all that makes things a little sweeter.

If you haven’t seen my iphone photo gallery before, please check it out here. I also post daily iPhone images to my twitter feed (@chasejarvis) and to my Facebook fan page. Love to see your avatar there and/or get any feedback.

Details on the other non-photo iPhone 3GS stuff here on Gizmodo. Big thanks to the Giz for the screengrabs and their play by play, live blogging the announcement.

iPhone Art Graces Cover of The New Yorker

So this time last month it was a still from the RED one camera featured on the cover of Esquire Magazine. Now it’s iPhone art on the cover of The New Yorker magazine. Yes, my friends, the future is upon us. The Matrix. And I love it.

Speaking about artist Jorge Colombo, abcnews.com reports:

“Using the Brushes application, one of thousands available for the iPhone and iPod touch, he has digitally painted dozens of New York scenes, including Grand Central Terminal, classic downtown delicatessens and the Empire State Building. This week one of his sketches will assume a spot coveted by artists in New York and all over the world: the cover of The New Yorker magazine.”

A made-for-morning-show-TV interview with Jorge here.

Well…told you it wasn’t getting any less interesting around here. So welcome to The Matrix…Now let’s just hope we’re all brighter than Neo and have a vocabulary beyond “whoa” to discuss what’s happening.

[If you're a noobie to this site, then you should know I've long been enamored with the iphone-as-damn-cool-camera and I send a daily iPhone image out into the world via my Twitter account (follow me) and my Facebook fan page (become a fan). My recently updated iPhone photo gallery is here. Check it. Now, just waiting for The New Yorker to call...and ever jealous of Jorge!]


Consequences of Social Media: ADCD Teaser #2

I’m giving a chat about creativity + social media at the Art Directors Club of Denver annual awards show. This 25-second teaser video highlights the consequences of social media.

This talk is open to the public, please tell your friends. Hope to see you there.

[Ok. So I'm having a little fun with this. In case you missed the earlier teaser video, check it out. In reality this one hurt a little more than the last one...]

Who: You + the Art Directors Club of Denver + the ASMP
What: Chase Jarvis keynote address
When: Friday, June 12, 6pm
Where: Denver, CO (Denver News Auditorium)
Details: www.adcd.com (more info coming soon)


[If you get this via RSS or email and can't see the video, click here.]

Consequences of Creativity: ADCD Teaser

I’m giving a chat about creativity on behalf of the Art Directors Club of Denver‘s annual awards show. This 45-second teaser video highlights the consequences of creativity.

This talk is open to the public, please tell your friends. Hope to see you there.

Who: You + ASMP + the Art Directors Club of Denver
What: Chase Jarvis keynote address
When: Friday, June 12, 6pm
Where: Denver, CO (Denver News Auditorium)
Details: www.adcd.com (more info coming soon)


[If you get this via RSS or email and can't see the video, click here.]

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