Monthly Archives: October 2009

The TSA’s War on TSA-Approved Locks.


Goldfinger teaching Bond a lesson....

When James Bond kept taking runs at Goldfinger, Gert Frobe (the wonderful German actor who embodied the Golden Guy) delivered these words of wisdom regarding his actions:

“Once is happenstance, twice is coincidence, but three times, Mr. Bond, is enemy action.”

So, that makes 6 times, what? I’ll tell you. It’s simply all-out war.

And that is how many times in a row that the TSA has opened one of my bags (secured with the TSA-approved Travel Sentry locks), inspected the contents, and then proceeded to toss the lock away (or resell it on EBay, or whatever the hell they do with the locks) and six times in a row that they’ve neglected to put in the required sheet of paper explaining that my bag has been searched, yada, yada, yada.

What are we to make of this?  Hit the jump to find out.

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Posted in Ironies, Legal Issues, Photo Gear, Travel, Workshops & Seminars

Attention DC-Area travel shooters…

Last call for any travel shooters in the Washington, DC area!

This Tuesday, I’ll be giving a three-hour program at the VisArts Center in Rockville, MD on the “trials and tribulations of a travel photographer.” It’s funny, it’s informative, and it’s only $25!

That works out to $8-something an hour for some primo edutainment—-that’s only about a buck over minimum wage in Maryland (hey, don’t blame me, somebody’s been trying to get that number up, but noooooo! That would be socialism).

Anyway, politics notwithstanding, it’s gonna be a great night and there are still places left at this price. By Monday, it’ll be scalper city—-why, Mick, Keith, and I have been known to draw $1 to $2 above the printed ticket price on the actual nights of our gigs!  Don’t be a chump! Gather some moss and pre-register for this event!

Posted in Events, Workshops & Seminars

Don’t Ask, I’ll Tell…


An in-camera jpeg. Photo © Bob Krist

I have to get it off my chest…I have to come out of the closet and confess something so shameful and so heinous that it will probably cost me dearly in terms of career, family, friends, and maybe even my ASMP membership. What is this horrible secret?

I shoot JPEG.

Wait, wait, before you click off in horror and disgust, I always shoot RAW too, always. But for the last six months or so, I’ve been shooting RAW +JPEG Fine, and about 80% of the time, I’ve just been using the out-of-the-closet, er, I mean, out-of-the-camera JPEGs. Hit the jump for details on how I found myself in this position—and how it is saving my sanity.

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Posted in Photo Gear, Photo Techniques

Gourmet: Going, going….Gone:-(

imagesimages-1Picture 1

November will be the last issue of this grand old foodie mag published by the good folks at Conde Nasty. In the 90’s (that is, last century), Gourmet was one of my best clients. Their jobs were like a rich dessert: you stayed at the best hotels, ate at the best restaurants, and were treated like a king by everyone from chefs to PR folks.

Irwin Glusker was the AD and he always made you look good in the spreads with big pictures and pages and pages per story.  Ah the good old days.

Then came the internet, and with it, the corporate lawyers who decided that locking up “content” was the way to go to preserve Gourmet and Conde Nasty. So, overnight, the contract went from what was then the normal “one time use” to the following, now famous, bit of legalese:

“For these considerations, you hereby grant Conde Nast the copyright to these photographs in this or any other medium, now in existence, or hereinafter developed, throughout the universe…..”

The galaxy wasn’t enough for these guys, noooooo, they had to lock up your work throughout the universe.  So just in case Gourmet launched an edition on say, the planet Rigel VII, they still wouldn’t have to pay you, the “content provider,” another nickel over the old “one-time use” Earth dayrate.

Set your phasers on stun, and hit the jump to find out how we handled those odious snippets of legalese. Continue reading »

Posted in Career issues, Ironies, Legal Issues

Last Tango in Buenos Aires


Photo by Bernardo Galmarini


Photo by Bernardo Galmarini


Well, my time in Buenos Aires is drawing to a close. I won’t be able to share any pictures from the assignment with you until National Geographic Traveler publishes the story (in February, I think). In the meantime, I have to share these behind the scenes shots.

The shot on the left was taken at the Feria de Mataderos, a street fair on the fringes of Buenos Aires. I was shooting the street dancing when a local lady grabbed me and pulled me out to dance. It’s a quick little two-step, called a zamba, that I was able to figure out fast, so I was able to keep up. It’s always a good idea to join in the fun, at least for a little while, to break the ice with the locals.

A couple of guys in gaucho getup came up to me after this number and called me “Meeester Fred Ah-Stare!” We had a good laugh and then they let me photograph them doing their thing during the rest of the afternoon. In fact, I got nods and smiles from many of the locals after my little two-step. There weren’t many foreign tourists at this event and I guess I stood out.

But being willing to make a bit of a fool of yourself is often a way to endear yourself to the locals and a great way to get some pictures…works for me at least!

The other picture, with the tango dancer Claudia in Caminito de Boca?

Well, there’s no photo lesson there. Claudia and her dance partner were modeling for me, and I just wanted a picture with a pretty young dancer to keep Peggy guessing.  Yes, we’ve been married 35 years, but she shouldn’t get too overconfident.

Actually, Bernardo said it looked more like a beautiful dancer sitting on Santa Claus’s lap than a sexy tango pose. Maybe that’s why Peggy is so confident….

So, when it comes to dancing, I ain’t quitting my day (and night) job…but I am entertaining several offers of seasonal employment from department stores and shopping malls!

Posted in Destinations, Travel