Monthly Archives: December 2009

Ken Rockwell shut me down…



Wow, I had no idea what it was like to be one of the popular kids….until Ken Rockwell put a link to one of my posts on his blog. I’m a fan of Ken’s analyses and advice, and apparently, so are thousands of other folks!

Because once that link appeared, this little blog was immediately swamped with a 400% increase in traffic, which caused my hosting company to shut down my site. I had a little shared server which was plenty to handle my normal traffic, but it just melted down at the onslaught of Rockwellian readership.

And all it took was the immediate payment of triple my normal yearly fee to get the bandwidth I needed to stay up. Oh fifteen minutes of fame…. nobody told me you’d be so costly!

All of this because I admitted to shooting (and occasionally even using) JPEGs along with my NEFs. It’s clear to me that file format and raw processor choice is only a slightly less controversial topic than global warming, health care, or Apple vs. PC (wait, wait, is there still even a question about that last one:-)

It’s clear that you guys love techie posts, like Don’t Ask, I’ll Tell and What’s in The Bag, and are not so much on “state of the biz” or “what I’ve been doing lately” posts. That’s cool.

In an effort to keep some of you coming back to visit now that I’ve actually got room at the inn, I’d like to point you to a couple of older techie posts that answer a lot of questions raised in the comments and emails generated by those other two posts.

First, the question of what else I pack and take besides the camera bag: check out this post and this one too. If you’re interested in audio gear for multimedia, take a look here.

I’ll have more tech posts coming up but I wanted to try to keep some of you guys here by pointing you backwards a month or so. Because, truthfully, most of what I’ve got coming for the next couple of weeks are witty think pieces (he says modestly!)….oh, and an audio slideshow featuring beautiful ballerinas…shot in NEF (but not in the raw)!

Posted in Ironies, Photo Gear, Photo Techniques, Technology

2010 Spirit of Place Calendar is here!

cSOP 2010 Cover2

photo © Bob Krist

We are expecting the just took delivery of our annual calendar, Spirit of Place. Finally! This is a calendar of worldwide travel photography that I produce every year as a promotional piece that goes to clients and friends.

This year, though, we’re doing two things differently.

First, the calendar is all black & white infrared images. Usually it’s all the bright, saturated color pix that you’d expect in a calendar. But I’ve been amassing a nice collection of worldwide imagery in black and white infrared, and since I’m the publisher, photo editor, and the main client for the project, I said screw conventional calendar wisdom, I like these B&W’s so let’s go with them! (It’s good to be the client…I’m not used to wielding this kind of power!)

Second, we ordered some extra for sale as a fundraiser for the Jonathan Krist Foundation. The calendar has become very popular over the years and folks are always asking buy extras for gifts etc, so this year we thought we’d oblige.

All proceeds (not just net proceeds) will go to the foundation and its projects; bringing much needed wells to African villages, and funding music programs in underserved American schools where music has been cut from the curriculum. These were two of my late son’s charitable activities as a student leader, and the foundation basically carries on that work.

We’re not set up for e-commerce on my website anymore, but if you’re interested in a copy ($25 includes shipping), drop me an email ( with your phone number and somebody from our vast organization will call to get your credit card info and address, or you can send a check for $25 made out to the Jonathan Krist Foundation to : 10 Old Mill Road, New Hope, PA 18938. Be sure to tell us where to send it.

CORRECTION: My CFO has just informed me that we haven’t been able to take credit cards for awhile now (shows how much I pay attention), since it was costing us more in maintenance fees than we were making in sales in our vast e-commerce operation. So the only option to get a calendar, alas, is to send a check to the foundation. Sorry about that!

Here’s the back cover:

Picture 3

photo © Bob Krist

Posted in Destinations, Travel

Take two tablets, but don’t call me in the morning…

I know, everybody’s just quivering about what Apple is going to do with the tablet. I love my Kindle 2 as much as the next guy (probably more—-I really adore that thing for travel), but leave it to the Brits to put the whole tablet thing in perspective and make it easier to swallow!

Watch the video above, and then tell me why it’s better than this, pound for pound, or in our case, dollar for dollar?

Yeah pen-touch interface…you go boy!

Posted in Career issues, Ironies, Technology

Yo, Guido! You goin’ down the shore??


Oh, my poor New Jersey; state of my birth, view out my back window. Getting slammed again by the mainstream media (MTV—yes, don’t kid yourself, it’s totally mainstream) in the form of yet another reality show depicting garden variety, Garden State stereotypes. First, it was the horrible harridans of Ho Ho Kus in Real Housewives of New Jersey.

Now, it’s Guidos and Guidettes going to the beach in Jersey Shore, premiering this week on MTV.

Already, there are anti-defamation groups calling for the show to be pulled. If those groups happen to be from Jersey themselves, you know they’re gonna make it happen because, um, they’ll know where the kids of the MTV execs go to private school and, well…..I’m just sayin’, is all.

Of course,  I can “just say” because I am a born and bred Jersey boy. We’ll slam our own state, thank you very much. We don’t need no metrosexual, Viacom suit who commutes to Manhattan from Park Slope to do it for us.

I’m not going to say that the Shore doesn’t have its fair share of Jersey stereotypes, but if you’d like a more balanced view of this fascinating, oft-maligned region, you couldn’t do better than picking up one of these:

DownTheShorestilllife copy

Photo © Bob Krist

Now, I don’t want to put any ideas in MTV’s head, but if they bought one of these fine volumes for everybody in the afflicted anti-defamation groups, wouldn’t that be a wonderful PR gesture (and, er, by “PR,” I mean public relations) during this holiday season?

In fact, they should probably buy a copy or two for every member of the cast and crew and anyone else even remotely associated with the production (and get some for those New Jersey housewives over on Bravo too, while you’re at it).

What’s that you say? Isn’t that my book? Why yes, as a matter of fact it is! Aren’t I blowing my own horn?

Naw, I’m just sayin’ is all…..

Posted in Destinations, Ironies, Travel

What’s In the Bag, Lately

Note: Hit the movie start button above to empty the bag!

I’ve been updating my Keynote presentations for next year’s series of National Geographic Traveler Photo Seminars (coming soon to a city near you!) that I present with my colleague and good buddy Ralph Lee Hopkins.  While working on the “what’s in the bag” section,  I came to the blinding realization that I’m pretty much using small, variable aperture zooms as my main glass for travel assignments these days.

This is something I swore I’d never do, because I loved my f/2.8 fixed aperture zooms as much as life itself. Of course, I am also the person who was quoted at a seminar presentation years ago as claiming that “I’ll switch to digital when they pry the Nikon F100 from my cold, dead hands….”

So the takeaway lessons?  Stuff happens, things change, small lenses get sharper, VR gets better, and sore backs get older. Oh, and also; I have a big mouth into which I insert my foot on a regular basis!

For a rundown of what I’ve been carrying for the last year, and what I wish I could add to it, hit the jump. Continue reading »

Posted in Ironies, Photo Gear, Travel