November 29, 2011

Contest Results

Sorry I didn’t update you sooner on the results of the photo contest! The winner was announced on November 14, and it’s not me. The gallery of the images submitted wasn’t posted until today, so I had no idea what the winning image was until now.

While I’m disappointed, the image that won is a different style than I like for my own work –  and it’s actually one of the gargoyles . My version was very popular among the voters who helped me pick, but I ruled it out because it was a temporary decoration. I think the other image would have won even if I submitted mine, as the instructor likes HDR images. I don’t care much for the majority of HDR images out there, though it really suits the gargoyle in this instance! (I’ll explain a bit more about HDR images when I post about how I edited one of the photos I submitted, and why RAW format is so amazing – but you can also read about the definition here.)

You can see all the submissions in the Tamron gallery – some great images from all different levels of experience!

Thanks to everyone who participated in my contest-within-a-contest!  I am looking for an easy way to offer greeting cards with my images, in particular the gargoyle, but currently my portfolio site only offers them in an unusual size/ratio (very tall/narrow), so it looks like it will have to be a different online storefront entirely.  I’ll be sure to update you when that happens!

October 31, 2011

Photo contest – voting results!

Thanks to everyone who voted! Wow it’s still going to be a hard decision 😛

First, there were some votes for photos that I said I wouldn’t enter – the red chair (95) and the infirmary gate (33). I appreciate the votes for those, in fact I really love the gate one myself. But as the red chair is the most commonly photographed cell in the whole place, and the gate was also a photo in the slideshow by the instructor, I just don’t feel that they would win. Though I may have taken the gate photo exactly the same without seeing a similar image first, it’s just not unique enough because of that.

The other images that I sadly had to disqualify are the gargoyles. I loooove me some gargoyles 😀 and I may end up getting some cards with the most popular image on them (2), but as they were a halloween decoration and not a permanent part, I feel that they have less of a chance of winning this contest.

There was a clear first place winner after removing those images from consideration – I counted votes for the color and black and white versions to be the same and images 24/25 got 5 votes total! The color one wins out with 4 votes:

I will be entering this image! And later this week, I’ll use it to show you the power of RAW format and how it really can benefit your images.  For the second, we have a tie among several images…



47:  OK, so this didn’t get any votes but it has my vote, so I’m still considering it! I really like the image, AND this was in an area that we didn’t have full access too, my timing was great that I could sneak in during a tour and get this shot. So, because I feel it’s a strong image that no one else probably got, I’m including it in the tie.


88:  One of the two votes for this image came from a professional who I consider to be the best in the state (at a minimum), and his reasoning is that it includes a human element with the boot.

I’m pretty much torn evenly between 47 and 88 at the moment, but that may change. I may have to just flip a coin….  I have to decide today and submit them for the contest, so I’ll let you know what I decide!

Thanks again to all who entered, I may do a random drawing even if I don’t win the contest, so stay tuned!

October 26, 2011

Eastern State Penitentiary Photos (And a contest!)

Just in time for Halloween (my favorite holiday!), I’d like to share some photos from a workshop this past weekend that I attended. Tamron and one of my local shops, Photozone offered this great opportunity to take photos all day long at Eastern State Penitentiary in Philadelphia PA!

Saturday was a two hour classroom setting seminar which went over the schedule for the next day, what to bring, and a presentation by Ken Hubbard from Tamron on what to expect at the Penitentiary and how to get the most out of our cameras.  Sunday, we boarded a bus before the crack of dawn (ouch!) and headed down to Philadelphia.  The day started with a private tour before the site was open to the public, and then we were free to shoot.

As an added bonus, Tamron had tables set up with their lenses and we could borrow any of them to shoot! I borrowed the 10-24 mm wide angle in the morning (worked amazing in the tight cells!) and the 60mm f2.0 macro in the afternoon.

(Tamron is offering a similar workshop a few times in November that goes to the Lakota Wolf Preserve! It just may be worth getting up that early (or earlier) once again… See their full event schedule here.)

When we got back to Photozone, there was a raffle with many prizes – I won a lens cleaning pen, but the first prize was a new tripod (Oh I could have used that, as mine broke that day! Not so bad that I couldn’t use it the rest of the day, but I definitely need to replace it).

But the more exciting contest – which has my competitive spirit going full force – is a photo contest!  Each participant can submit 2 photos from the workshop, and the instructor is going to choose a winner. The prize is a Tamron 70-300mm VC USD Di Lens!  I have a 1 in 23 chance of winning it, and I am DETERMINED!

This is where YOU come in! And to sweeten the deal, if I win, YOU WIN!  I need help choosing my two best images to submit. If the image you vote for wins the contest, I’ll be sending you a prize too!

Note: While I will count all votes and try to submit the two highest ranking images, I have a few that I probably wouldn’t submit.  This is because a few images I took (and really like) are similar to the instructor’s images in the slideshow during his presentation. I don’t know how that would affect the chances of winning, but I don’t feel that submitting a “copy” image (even if it’s my own take on it) is a good idea… The two images below are examples of this – the gate at the infirmary and probably the most popular photo from the site, the barbershop chair. If you want to try to talk me into considering them, go ahead, but this is the only reason I’ll overrule the votes.

OK so let’s get down to the nitty gritty details!


Go to the album of images either on

Vote for your TWO favorite images by leaving a comment (any comment) on the images. If you can’t choose two, you can just vote for one, but it lowers your chances! Do not vote on both sites, just go to the one most convenient for you.  If there’s a color image you think should be black & white, you can state that in your comment/vote.

You have until Friday October 28 at 12 noon (EST) to vote. Friday, I will count and determine the two winning images, and over the weekend I will refine these images further before submitting them to the contest by October 31.

If an image you voted for wins a new lens for me, YOU WIN! You will have your choice of either

  • A gift print of any image from the Penitentiary series, 8″ x 10″ or smaller (your choice of size)
  • A set of 5 greeting cards with any image from the Penitentiary series (all 5 will be the same image, blank inside)

If you have any questions or comments that aren’t votes, please leave them below!  Thanks, and I look forward to us BOTH winning! 😀

(Yes, I still have photos from Burning Man, our road trip, and my amazing class with Neil Van Niekerk to finish up and post. I had to work on these in a hurry to make the contest deadline! They are coming I promise!)


Edit to add: If you vote for a color or B&W image, and I send the same image but opposite of the one you voted for, I’ll still count your vote when it wins! 😀

August 18, 2011

Crazy Hazy Summer

I hope everyone is having a fantastic summer!  I am, despite the heat and humidity being worse than usual – but then I’m about to fix the humidity part of that equation by camping in the desert.  It’s been busy over here, as we just bought an RV for our trip to Burning Man, and will be doing a cross country drive to get it home after!

A few weeks ago I had an amazing day in NYC at a photography workshop run by Neil Van Niekerk – if you are serious about learning photography, I can’t recommend his books/blog/workshops enough!  I haven’t even had time to finish up with the photos from that day to post them, but I’ll get to it after our trip.

My bigger priority was a photoshoot with another photographer from one of my forums – so often the photographer in the family never has a shot of the whole family, so our forum started up a pay-it-forward photoshoot swap among volunteers.  I didn’t need photos of us, as we have plenty (from Neil!) from our wedding, but I was anxious to apply what I learned  so I offered up a photoshoot.  Marie and I pored over google maps and looked at geotagged photos to find this great location in Hook Mountain, NY.  It was quite a hike for a hot and humid day, and the kids were feeling it too, but I was really pleased to meet her wonderful family and give her a few new family photos to remember the summer!

When we couldn’t get any more posing out of them, they had some rock skipping lessons!

Thanks Marie, and also thank you to your beautiful family! It was great to spend some time together along the Hudson.

May 2, 2011

Dig Deep

This has nothing to do with photography (or does it? It could….) but on our other blogs, I have signed up to be an affiliate for a new e-product called “Digging Deep”. I would have gladly recommended this for free, I don’t help just anyone sell, only people and products that I strongly believe in and enjoyed for myself. I won’t be putting affiliate links in my sidebar here, but I will from time to time share the news and link to things like this on our other blogs.  If you are interested, click to read more! If not, I understand.  I promise, all affiliate links and ads here will be kept to a minimum! (The blog I link to is the dream project my husband and I are working on in the hopes of one day becoming Sustainable Nomads – feel free to check it out and follow if you are interested!)

April 27, 2011

Crediting Artists

This is a great poster for bloggers – while there’s an effort out there advocating giving proper CREDIT to any artist or photographer whose work you use, the proper and legal way is to actually get PERMISSION! Too often that step is ignored!

(This is my first time using the reblogging feature from wordpress, since I didn’t get permission from wabi wabi or the creators of the poster so I’m basically linking to the post – and I’m walking out the door – if things are wonky, I’ll fix it later!)

image credit: a visual guide. A short while ago, chelsea fuss featured this typographic poster to bring awareness to the issue of image crediting in the blogosphere. (The poster was created by designers pia jane bijkerk and erin loechner with fonts designed by yvette van boven.) It’s great to have something definitive in one handy rectangle of space to refer to. When I started this blog, inspired as I was by this new wave of image-heavy blogs, I just tried to follow suit when … Read More

via wabi wabi


On Wabi Wabi’s post, I left a comment similar to my statement above – that too often giving credit is assumed to be enough rather than asking permission, and it can still be theft even if you say who you stole it from!  Another reader commented that I was wrong, it’s not theft under the fair use act. I’m reposting my reply to him, as I feel strongly about this issue and it’s quite a muddy one!

Fair use is a widely debated topic, and I think that it isn’t always clear. I also think that blogging and sites such as tumblr are redefining fair use in ways that the law either is ignoring or will be changing to allow.

I admit, I’m not 100% sure about the blogging and fair use and I am not a lawyer – my knowledge is mostly from discussions among pro and aspiring pro photographers on forums (even there, not all will agree on how to interpret the law). But blogging does not always automatically comply with fair use and I have several sources to back that up.

I know that excerpts of work are allowed for reviews (IE, quotes from a book or a clip from a movie), but the work in it’s entirety would NOT be allowed, on any blog under any fair use law. How then, would showing a photographer’s image be allowed, when it’s the “entire body” of the work? (Assuming it’s a standalone image not a series.)

I feel that as a photographer, someone blogging my image full size without permission is not complying with fair use. If they took a photo of an art exhibition with my work in the background, it would be. cite:

If they blogged my image then discussed it, it would then be transformed and probably considered fair use.

As for suing about fair use? Sometimes you win sometimes you don’t.

I’m also reading another example – posting my image to critique it is probably allowed, but using my image to illustrate an article on a blog generating income? Different story.

Bottom line – sometimes it is theft, sometimes it’s not. Sometimes it’s pursued by the copyright holder, sometimes it’s ignored. Sometimes the courts side with you, sometimes against you. Simply providing credit to the photographer doesn’t keep you out of trouble. Even if the courts agree with you, you’ll have a lot of legal fees to deal with. As the poster says, asking permission is the RIGHT (legal!) thing to do! (Or stick with Creative Commons licensed work!)

April 18, 2011

What I’ve been up to

Scratching luck dragons behind the ear, and taking photos of mythological creatures

Playing with Instagram on my upgraded iphone! See my gallery here.  If you are on instagram, my user name is KatieGould.  I also tweet them, tumblr them, and put them on my personal facebook page! (My fan page is – come “like” me!)

Working on the new looks for Katie Gould Photography!  As you may know, this blog template and my zenfolio site were built quickly and haven’t had much time put into them.  My husband is working on the back end development stuff for a new look on the blog, I finally got a logo, and I’m working on choosing colors and other branding characteristics.  It’s so much fun!! 😀 Don’t get too excited, it will probably be a while before the “full” launch.  However as soon as my logo is revised for me, I’ll be starting to use it in watermarking.

What have you been up to?

February 17, 2011

Valentine’s Day Shoot

I had the pleasure of shooting two friends for some Valentine’s Day goodies for their husbands! Here’s a sample of some of the fun.  And if you ever need to rent a studio, I highly recommend Angel Studios in Philadelphia, where we shot these!

December 17, 2010

Holiday Baby

My beautiful friend is getting a special gift this Christmas – she’s due around New Year’s Eve! We had an awesome time taking photos this week.
The pendant in her hands is a special necklace that she wears daily – I have one as well, it’s from Cleu Camp at Burning Man!

November 11, 2010

Assateague Ponies