Video Pro Bono Program looking for Local Non-Profit


As you may know, our Video Department at Orange has grown this past year with the popularity of our Slo Mo Photo/Video Booth and event highlight reels. We are super excited about our savvy new videographers and video editors! With our expanding talent pool, we are thrilled to introduce our Video Pro Bono Project in line with our Social Photography Program(more…)

Camera Bags and Compact Flash – the value of customer service

genex2014_0046fRecently we had two awesome customer service experiences with two brands we have had a longstanding relationship with.  One is Think Tank Photo who produces camera bags and accessories, and the other is with Lexar Media. The first product we ever bought from Think Tank was the Airport Antidote camera bag.  It was right after the company started up and we heard about them when shooting for the San Francisco Chronicle since some of their folks had used the gear.  We eventually got some belt packs as well as other accessories from them, and have found their products to be almost bulletproof.  Of course eventually things can fail, and the zipper finally busted on the Antidote so we contacted them about fixing it.  Instead, they wowed us by reviewing the damage and offering up a replacement bag instead.  Since they are close by, we went up and visited their offices in person and exchanged the old bag for a new one.  They let us pick between two options since the original bag was no longer in production.  It was a really great customer service experience and will keep us as customers of theirs for sure!

Similarly, we have had pretty good luck with our storage media overall, but the Compact Flash cards we use get written and overwritten repeatedly and frequently.  Finally one of our cards broke down and we worked with Lexar online support to test the card.  Eventually they ruled that it was defective and we filled out some paperwork and they sent a replacement.  Easy!

Great customer service is something we pride ourselves on and when we experience it ourselves, we like to point it out and share our experience with others.

Congratulations Alexis Davis!


We photographed Alexis back in 2012 and she’s been on a tear since in the world of Mixed Martial Arts.  The above shot was during that shoot we did for her and we were excited to see that she’ll be facing off against Ronda Rousey at UFC 175 in Las Vegas.

Farewell Don!


This week we lost a dear friend in Don Anderson.  Don was a mentor at First Exposures which is how I first met him, but he had done so much before that as well.  He always brought positive energy to the classes and was a mentor to us mentors.  I always felt like Don was the mentor that I should be and his knowledge and excitement about photography was something that infected both mentor and mentee alike.

While he may be gone, he leaves a lasting impression and I feel fortunate to have known him.  The photo above is of Don with his mentee Martin.  His obituary is posted here: Donald R. Anderson 1936 – 2014

Rest in Peace, Don!

The Instagram Papers – social media and usage rights grabs


As photographers, you may have heard about the Instagram terms of service kerfuffle a while back, but it kind of died down and then it seemed like radio silence.  However, the real issue for all users is what the those TOS (Terms of Service) really are and how they impact all users of Instagram.

One thing we weren’t aware of was the fact that you can’t actually delete your account on Instagram which kind of seems bizarre.  But based on the TOS it does make sense from the Instagram/Facebook perspective.  Since they are allowed to do pretty much anything with your images, it makes sense that the wouldn’t want to delete accounts because that means that they would lose the images from the accounts.  Since they are allowed to sell and license any image posted to Instagram, why would they ever want to delete any assets they can make money off of?

Luckily ASMP (American Society of Media Photographers) has taken the lead on challenging this terrible TOS rights grab and is in discussions with Facebook (who owns Instagram).  You can follow what’s going on at the ASMP website at:


Happy Beer Week!


San Francisco Beer Week has been growing by leaps and bounds every year and we’ve been fortunate enough to have been to all of them and photographed a few events.  While we prefer to just drink and enjoy the amazing beer, food, and events, we thought we’d share our love of beer as a sort of Valentine’s Day post!  You can see all the photos we took so far during Beer Week in this gallery.

Jack from Lost CoastJack from Lost Coast (more…)

Rip-Tie velcro® straps to keep you organized

7574_RipTie_0027fI’m sure a bunch of people will have New Years resolutions to be more organized and as a photography studio we have a lot of things that get messy so we decided to get more velcro straps to attach to the many cords and such that we have as part of our photography gear.

We found Rip-Tie made custom ones and decided to order a batch and then realized they were right here in the San Francisco Bay Area in San Leandro so that was quite a plus to be able to support another local business. This week we dropped by and got to see some of the behind-the-scenes at Rip Tie and found out that the company was actually formed out of the same frustration that we had.

Founder and President Michael Fennell used to manage a video rental department at a local San Francisco photography equipment sales and rental shop.  He had to manage all the cords and cables and it was all quite messy and there weren’t really any good solutions so he came up with cable organizers using Velcro® straps and that’s what turned into Rip-Tie.

Their space in San Leandro has a bunch of custom machinery as well as some other old machines (some as old as 20-years old, that have been modified and maintained) like a Brother tacker.  But it’s the new machines that were built just for Rip-Tie that are the most impressive.  Fennell explained the evolution of the machines and how they were built, which was a lot of pretty nifty engineering that’s way beyond us :)

There are various areas where different parts of the manufacturing process happen including a shop where they fabricate what they need, a warehouse/shipping and receiving zone, kitchen, office and lots of open areas where the sewing, stamping and such happens.

We’re super excited to start using our straps to keep our cords and cables more organized and definitely would recommend them to other businesses as well.


Sideways Photo Booth Redux


You may have seen the sideways photo booth before, but we did one again last night and this one was a total blast!  The set was really nicely done by our client and made for a perfect illusion.  Above is a shot of our team doing test shots and if you are into selfies, this is the most epic selfie we’ve seen in a while :) 7504_Sideways_0365f (more…)

Star Trek Tricorder XPRIZE photo shoot

Tricorder XPRIZE

We had a blast recently doing a shoot for the Star Trek Tricorder XPRIZE competition.  We had some Star Trek fans at the studio to promote this awesome Qualcomm Tricorder XPRIZE and everyone was really into the shoot.  The prize itself is super awesome too: “A $10 million competition to bring healthcare to the palm of your hand,” as they state on the website.  We’d love to see this happen and a lot of the other initiatives that XPRIZE is doing are incredible too so check them out on their website!

We had a ton of help from our friend Jon Sung (above) to pull this together: “It helped immensely to have in Dallis a highly professional, organized producer who also spoke fluent Trek, so he could make specific requests about particular alien races and uniform looks. The evening’s photographer, Billy, was also a blast to work with!”

And that awesome Klingon?  That was Jesse MacKinnon who said “It was a long process, but putting on the Klingon makeup felt good. It felt natural. In fact, I got the strong urge to disembowel the nearest person I could!”

Star Trek Tricorder XPrize


Change is good: Peter Hurley The Art Behind the Headshot

Chances are if you are a portrait photographer you’ve seen or heard of Peter Hurley.  If you haven’t seen his  presentation at the Google + Photographers Conference, check it out on YouTube.  We purchased his tutorial on headshots and someone asked me why we needed it.  The truth is you can never stop learning, especially in the world of photography.  Change is inevitable and if you don’t adapt then you’ll fall behind.  Some people feel that this is disheartening but we love it.  Change to us is learning new things, seeing new ways to see, and as a creative professional, we feel like that is required to be on top of our game. (more…)


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Congratulations Alexis Davis!
Congratulations Alexis Davis!

We photographed Alexis back in 2012 and she’s been on a tear since in the world of Mixed Marti

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Happy Beer Week!
Happy Beer Week!

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San Francisco Green Business renewal
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