TWiP #192 – Lady Gaga’s Poker Face on Copyright

This week on TWiP:  Lady Gaga demands the rights to concert photographs, laser focusing to help with the dreaded focus hunting, and one New Yorker's quest to return a lost roll of film ends in Paris. Plus a special interview with Trey Ratcliff.

Hosts: Frederick Van Johnson, Rick Sammon, Tyler Ginter, and Catherine Hall


Tragedy in Japan
Though not directly camera related, the big news story this week was the earthquake and Tsunami in Japan. The guests this week discuss what strategies photographers might have to employ when going in to cover a situation where basic services such as electricity, telephone, and internet connections may not be available.

Lady Gaga – All Your Copyrights Is Belong to Me
Concert photographers often have to agree to some fairly strict restrictions when photographing popular artists. These limitations include such things as the length of time they are permitted to shoot, rules regarding the use of flash, and where they are allowed to shoot from. Lady Gaga takes things to another level requiring photographers to sign over their Copyright as revealed in a recent blog post by TBD photographer Jay Westcott.

DeluxGear Announces PinPoint Laser-Aided System to Assist with Auto Focusing
DeluxGear has released an attachment for dSLR cameras that emits  a laser beam to assist the auto-focus system and help eliminate the focus hunting issue that can occur in certain situations. Rick adds that if you're doing close up or macro photography you can use a ring light which will normally have modeling lights. He also uses a flashlight. Catherine wonders about mounting it on the bottom of the camera and wonders if the laser would obtrusive in certain situations.

New Yorker's Mysterious Photo Quest End in Paris
New York resident Todd Bieber, was cross country skiing when he happened upon a roll of film in the snow. He decided to develop the film and then shared the images online in an attempt to track down the photographer who took the images. After his posts went viral, he managed to locate the creators of the photographs in Paris and embarked on a journey to return the photographs to the owners. While there, Todd decided to leave behind his own roll of film in the hopes that someone would find it and embark on their own photography adventure.

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This week, Frederick sat down with Trey Ratcliff to catch up with the latest happenings in his world and discuss the business side of his popular website – Stuck in Customs. Trey is also active in the eBook space and recently launched Flatbooks where you can go to purchase some great photography eBooks.

A few weeks ago on Episode 187, a listener inquired about what to do with used photography equipment. Listener Dieter Zakas emailed us to let us know about a possible solution. “In the area of unwanted film cameras, several options abound. One option with which I'm familiar is to donate it to the Film Photography Podcast, a biweekly show about film photography out of New Jersey. Host Michael Raso and his cohost, Duane Polcou, give away film cameras to listeners of the podcast. Their website has a “Donate” button, which will allow listeners to offer various items (working cameras, film and even money) for distribution to lucky listeners. The show's website is, and their email address is

Tyler also adds that you can also donate unwanted photography equipment to

Question #1Flash Interfering with Video
Lalo Vargas writes: Hi guys, I'm a wedding videographer that recently moved to dslr. I'm noticing whenever Im on a wedding recording video on my 60D or 5d MarkII every time a photographer shoots his flash my dslrs make this white twitch. Flashes mess the video image. This is the only negative thing I´ve seen on this little camaras. Do any experts here know how to fix this problem? Can it be fixed?

Tyler: Unfortunately this isn't something that can be avoided so you'll just have to try and coordinate with the photographers and try to avoid filming when they are using flash if you don't want that flash in the scene.

Question #2 – Recording a Sunset
Sherwood411 asks: Will it hurt the sensor to record a sunset (sun in frame)?

Rick: The sensor should be fine. I would be more worried about damaging your eyes if you're looking at the sun through your camera so be sure to wear some protective eye wear. If you're shooting with a filter, I would remove it to help reduce the chance of getting a ghost image.

Question #3 – Lens Suggestion for Event Photography
I need your help. I've been asked by my relatives to shoot a birthday party at night in a few days that's going to have a Red Carpet style entry way. The Red Carpet photos I think I have that covered with my AlienBees and 28-135mm.
I need suggestions on what lens to rent for the candid shots as I walk around the event. I can't bounce flash because there is no ceiling (sky light roof) and the place is dark at night. What are your suggestions? What would you do? How would you photograph people on the dance floor. I'm thinking you would handle this like a wedding reception. Please help!

Catherine: If I could only pick one lens I would go with either the 24-70 or the 70-200. As far as lighting, since there isn't a ceiling, I would recommend having an assistant to help hold a big bounce card and bounce flash off the white side of the reflector.


Rick – Rogue Flash Benders

Catherine – Nik Software Silver Efex Pro 2.0 &  HDR Efex Pro

Tyler – GoPro HD Helmet Cam

Frederick – Instapaper & 100 Cameras in 1 iPhone app


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Rick Sammon – or

Catherine Hall – or

Frederick Van or


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Intro Music by Scott Cannizzaro

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  1. Great show, I’m glad I stumbled onto it.

    In reference to show #192

    I was just listening to the podcast and interview with Trey Ratcliff. He was talking about how “Legitimate companies don’t steal, you don’t have big companies out there stealing my stuff and using it for commercial purposes, it just doesn’t happen.” Then go on to talk about how illegitimate companies do. This may be the case for him, and it would be much more noticeable if big companies did steal his work, but I can think of two instance (one recently talked about on this podcast) where big “legitimate” companies did steal photographs for commercial purposes.

    Just a thought

    Have a great day and thanks for the pod casts!

  2. Following on from Catherine’s comments in the Japan Earthquake & Tsunami discussion about keeping a buffer between you and the tragedy:

    “[Margaret] Bourke-White was the first female war correspondent and the first woman to be allowed to work in combat zones during World War II.”

    “She arrived at Buchenwald, the notorious concentration camp, and later said, “Using a camera was almost a relief. It interposed a slight barrier between myself and the horror in front of me.””

    A longer quote continues:
    “I kept telling myself I would believe it when I had a chance to look at my own photographs but later when I developed the negatives I could not bring myself to look at the films.”

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