Monday, October 29, 2007

'Cleanliness is next to fastiness'

Scott Byer and Adam Jerugim of Adobe gave a lecture at Photoshop World this past September about optimizing your computer's performance when working with big files. Scott has posted the lecture notes on his blog Living Photoshop. There are guides for Mac and PC settings you can change and ways to test your system's speed. Most of our customers will spend hours of their day working with large files for big prints. This comprehensive guide could help you shave off some time in your work flow. Couldn't we all use some extra minutes in the day?

Photoshop World - Heavy Lifting:

I wanted to call out a couple of things that are currently buried in the speaker notes, and I'm not sure if I got them across appropriately. First, setting Photoshop's memory percentage to 100% only makes sense if you've got more than 4GB of RAM in the machine, and again, only if you haven't run into trouble running the filters you need that way, and are on CS3. We've improved our ability to back off in the case that the machine we're on starts to page every version. However, it's still important to watch that free RAM (or, in the case of Vista, the amount still being used for the system file cache). It's important that you watch what's going on on your system when pushing things to their limit. If you're regularly seeing free memory (or the amount of free memory + system cache on vista) go below 20MB, it's time to back off that memory percentage setting and try again.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Christine Taft gets the blue ribbon

Christine Taft was awarded 1st and 2nd place in the Arizona State Fair photography competition. They receive submissions from all over the state and limit entries to 4 photographs per category. For Christine to place 2 out of the 4 pictures she submitted, and beat out all the hundreds of other submissions, is a big accomplishment. She was awarded 1st place for her Calm of Fall image and 2nd place for Awakening to the Light. Congrats Christine!

You can go see Christine's prints at the Arizona State Fair Grounds at the Coliseum North Hall through November 4th (closed Mondays).

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

PMA 2008

You may not need much coaxing to go to Las Vegas, but if you are debating whether or not to make the trip in 2008 for the PMA (Photo Marketing Association) trade show this could help you make your decision. They have released their initial list of exhibitors and booth locations. There will be over 600 exhibitors attending. If you have any energy left after you are done, you might have time to hit the casinos. The 2008 PMA trade show will run from Jan 31 - Feb 2, 2008.

PMA '08 Exhibitor List Released: Digital Photography Review

The leading international conference and trade show, PMA 08 hosts retail entrepreneurial memory makers from around the world, including photo retailers, professional photographers, mass merchandisers, professional labs, custom picture framers, and scrapbook retailers. The PMA 08 International Convention features approximately 200 sessions, encouraging the discovery of more opportunities, professional development, and the inspiration to act on emerging trends. Further opportunities are found at the PMA 08 Trade Show, offering more picture-related products than any other event. PMA® members help people everywhere create, keep, display and share memories through pictures.

Friday, October 19, 2007

Bird on a Wire

Part of what makes what we do so fun is being able to work with such talented artists. We recently had the honor of meeting and working with Patrick Rummans for his latest art show. Patrick is a interesting fellow who has traveled the world and is now spending his time here in Arizona. He is originally from Montana and his latest show of avian photography will take him back to his home state. Although I did see the prints here before he sent them off for the show, and I know they look fantastic, I do wish I could be there for the opening. Good luck to you, Patrick! Thank you for letting us be a part of your artistic process.

All of the images from the show are also available for purchase on Patrick's gallery.

The show Bird on a Wire will be at the Lewistown Art Center in Lewistown, MT. From October 30th - November 30th. There will be an opening reception on November 4th.
I have always known that birds would be my passion in life. Even now, just holding a pigeon in my hands and breathing in the musky smell of its feathers takes me back to my childhood and the days when my relationship with birds was indelibly dyed into the fabric of who I would always be. I am completely and utterly smitten, and can never get my fill of them.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Rick D'Elia's Uganda Photo Exhibition

We recently worked with Rick D'Elia on some images for his upcoming show at the Zuva Gallery. The Zuva Gallery is dedicating their space to help bring community awareness to the recent events in Africa. They will have an ongoing series entitled "AFRICA: AS IT IS". Their first show will focus on Uganda.
On Thursday, Octover 18, 2007 at 7:00 pm, Zuva Gallery is opening an exhibition of 40 photographs from northern Uganda titled "The Human Tragedy of Northern Uganda". The photographs are on loan from the U.S. State Department and were commissioned by the U.S. Embassy in Kampala, Uganda. The exhibit will be on display in the Zuva Gallery Special Exhibition Space at el Pedregal Shops at The Boulders Resort (Upper Level, Suite L2/L4). The exhibit continues through October 31.

The evening reception will begin with a brief talk and slide show by photojournalist Rick D'Elia. D'Elia shot many of the images in the exhibition and has traveled to Uganda multiple times. In 2003 and 2004, D'Elia spent a year working in Uganda with The Monitor, the national independent daily newspaper. During that time he also worked with development organizations in Uganda to document the projects in health and education. D'Elia has earned a number of awards in Arizona photojournalism competitions as well as top placing in National competitions. Rick D'Elia's talk will be held in the Tohono Center (Upper Level) at el Pedregal Shops at The Boulders Resort.

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Maximize your in-store marketing efforts

Getting the customer to your store is one thing. Keeping their interest once they are there is another challenge. Using large graphics to express your marketing goal, whether it is to promote a sale or a new product you are introducing, can utilize your space to maximize your selling potential as well as help build your business brand. I found this article on, a site that offers a multitude of articles and videos that inform and inspire you to build a more successful business.

Maximize Your In-Store Marketing Efforts

While advertising can bring customers to a store, it can also work from within your store. Today many retailers realize how important in-store advertising can be to their bottom line.

Despite the drop among television viewers between 18-34, television advertising is still a 50+ billion dollar industry. Meanwhile, in-store advertising accounts for just over 15 billion dollars. This does not mean that retailers prefer advertising on television by a 3 to 1 ratio: It means that you can spend a lot less money advertising in your store. Moreover, you'll find that it can be highly effective.

...Of course, in-store advertising is most effective with a strategy. This means to first determine where to place racks, cubes, platforms, mannequins, and especially your well-designed signage in order to best display your merchandise. High-traffic areas -- doorways, cash registers, fitting rooms, for example -- should be your first consideration.

Other considerations when planning your in-store advertising include:
  • Creativity. Position your products in an interesting manner or on an original backdrop. Remember: You want to catch the eye of your customers as they pass your displays.
  • Lighting. Make sure all areas where advertising is present -- whether it's as a display or as signage -- are well lit and attractive.
  • Hands-on activities. Toy stores have displays where kids can play. Supermarkets have in-store samples. Tech stores let you test much of the merchandise. What can you do to tempt your customers?
  • Themes. Is it back-to-school time? Mothers' day? Thematic in-store advertising can focus around a specific season, holiday, or even a new trend or fashion.
  • Store layout. If your toys are in the back of the store, batteries should be as well. If women's clothing is located on the lower level, fashion accessories should be advertised and displayed en route to and from those escalators. Consider the layout of your location and how your customers get to the goodies that they seek. Then, advertise along the routes that they have to take, just as you see ads for hotels and restaurants along interstate highways.

Friday, October 05, 2007

Peter Lik photography

Peter Lik is a world renowned photographer who has over 9 galleries across the globe. I recently took a trip to Las Vegas, where he has 3 gallery locations. What is so striking about his work, besides his obvious talent, is the way that the images are presented. What may be hard to tell from the shots above are that many of his large panoramic images are printed on trans material and then traditionally matted and framed. The gallery has subdued lighting and the images glow bringing all the color and detail to life. You can't help but be drawn in to look at them. It was refreshing to see an artist use trans printing for their work and present them as finished framed pieces, so that you could imagine them fitting it to any decor or setting. It takes the art to another level. If you are ever in one of the cities where he has one of his many galleries you should make time to see it for yourself.

As a completely self-taught artist, master photographer Peter Lik started in Australia and soon expanded his vision worldwide. Huge panoramic photographs of landscapes showcase the brilliant colors and elegant, spiritual terrain in Nature. These images speak for themselves and leave the casual viewer breathless. The truly conscientious observer will experience fine art. When you come to Peter Lik Galleries, you will be able to experience a kind of natural lifestyle, accented with exotic high-end furniture and sculptures.