Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Kerby x3

Kerby x3

A quick triptych of our dog, Kerby, taken with the Tokina 12-24mm f/4 ultrawide zoom lens on my Nikon D700. Designed for APS-C crop-sensored cameras (like my old Nikon D50 and D200), the Tokina's image circle does not completely cover the 35mm sensor on my full-frame Nikon D700. Though severe vignetting occurs at the wide end (12mm), the image circle does widen to cover the D700's FX-sized sensor at 18mm and continues through to 24mm, meaning I can continue to enjoy this wonderful lens with my Nikon D700.

As my style has developed I've found myself less interested in the long telephoto lenses that I used when I first transitioned into digital photography, namely with the Olympus C-2100UZ (38mm-380mm f/2.8) and then the Panasonic DMC-FZ20 (36mm - 432mm f/2.8).

I'm much more interested in the resulting images that come from both engaging my subjects and including their surroundings by getting closer, even to the point of distortion.

Sheridan and Suzette
Sheridan and Suzette of Hip and Humble, SLC, UT

Christian, Wedding at Magnolia Plantation, Charleston, SC

Buckwheat Zydeco
Buckwheat Zydeco at the Snowbird 2008 Rock & Blues Festival, SLC, UT

Plus ultrawide lenses make for easy and fun self-portraits. :)

Moi, with a PB and hot pepper jelly sandwich

What's your favorite lens?

Monday, December 7, 2009

Interesting new online tool from Nikon, "NIKKOR Lenses Simulator"

Very interesting web-based tool that simulates shooting a scene with any Nikkor lens on either a DX or FX camera. Might come in handy for those moving from a crop-sensored body to full-frame.

NIKKOR Lenses Simulator

Friday, December 4, 2009

Live music: Eilen Jewell and Tim Easton

Eailer this year, when I was still living in the great Salt Lake City, UT, I covered UtahFM's 2009 Spring Fundraiser, which featured the dulcet-toned Eilen Jewell and her rockin' opener, Tim Easton.

Some of my favorite photos from the evening:

Tim Easton
Tim Easton

Eilen Jewell
Eilen Jewell

Johnny Sciascia
Johnny Sciascia

Eilen Jewell Band
Eilen Jewell Band

You can view more photos in this Flickr gallery or in the following slideshow:

The State Room
State Street
Salt Lake City, UT

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

What is the Internet's most ubiquitous stock photo?

My vote is for this one, I see this backpack-clad girl at least once a week, typically when I mistype a URL and end up on some domain squatter's landing page, for example

Clicking on the image will lead you to a quick and easy search with my new favorite "similar image search" tool, GazoPa from Hitachi (bye-bye TinEye!) reveals many web sites using this stock photo. That said, I was not able to find the source (Flickr, microstock sites like iStockPhoto, etc.) - anyone know where to find the original?

Do you have a contender for the Internet's most ubiquitous stock photo? Share it below!

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Found my photo used without permission

Found my photo used without permission


Unexpected hiking partners

Thanks to jakerome, who saw this Tuesday night, I found one of my photos being used on Toyota's new 4Runner web site without my permission.

For the record, I was never contacted for permission or licensing, the image is (and has been for some time) licensed All Rights Reserved and the way it's "protected" (weak as that is) on Flickr they had to have circumvented the protections (e.g. screen shot) to copy it.

Also I've had the following disclaimer on the photo for some time as well (I habitually do this with all of my popular Flickr photos):

This photo is licensed All Rights Reserved. If you wish to use/publish it contact Michael Calanan / Calanan Photography, LLC

On thing I have never done, but will begin to, is register my images with the US Copyright Office.

For those who might not be able to access the Flash page, the photo is the used at 230x150px, is not credited but does click through to the Flickr page.

I realise that I should seriously consider investing in retaining a lawyer but in the meantime I'd like to hear what others in similar situations have found to be successful.

Some folks half-jokingly suggesting that I send Toyota an invoice for licensing and usage - does that ever actually work?

Also some suggest Toyota is in the clear due to the fact that they link back to the original and one cited the case Kelly v. Arriba Soft:

Your thoughts?

Update #1 09:00 Mountain 04 Nov 2009

There are also discussions at:

And on Twitter via @calanan.

Update #2 09:45 Mountain 04 Nov 2009

Though I have not yet been contacted by Toyota directly, I just received a Twitter update from them stating:

"@calanan @Photo_John @stuartzero We're currently pulling the photos and will be in contact with each photography who was represented."

So much for the licensing/usage invoice I was drafting. :(

Update #3 10:30 Mountain 04 Nov 2009
Flickr jakerome / Twitter @jakerome has created two Flickr Galleries showing all the photos used in the 4Runner campaign:

Toyota, oh what a stealing! - Part 1
Toyota, oh what a stealing! - Part 2
Toyota, oh what a stealing! - Part 3

Update #4 11:00 Mountain 04 Nov 2009
Blogged at Brand's Anatomy: "The bigger the company, the bigger the blunder"

Update #5 13:15 Mountain 04 Nov 2009
There are apparently two separate 4Runner sites, the Flickr photos have only been removed from not from

Update #6 15:41 Mountain 04 Nov 2009
Still no contact from Toyota

Update #7 16:51 Mountain 04 Nov 2009
Another affected photographer, @dmourati speaks out, "Oh What a Feeling"

Update #8 18:20 Mountain 04 Nov 2009
Update from the Toyota Flickr account in Flickr: The Help Forum (still no direct contact from them):

"Toyota apologizes for pulling images from Flickr without photographer permission. Images from a handful of photographers appeared on a Toyota site for five days. We’re working quickly to reach out to the individual photographers involved. Until then, the images have been removed, and corrections have been made to the process of pulling images from Flickr."

Update #9 10:50 Mountain 05 Nov 2009
PDN (Photo District News) has picked up this story at PDNPulse

Update #10 13:45 Mountain 05 Nov 2009
Story picked up by

The Denver Egotist: Toyota Shamefully "Borrows" Image from Local Denver Photographer

CNET: Getty and Flickr deepen photo-licensing ties

Update #11 15:10 Mountain 05 Nov 2009
Another affected photographer, @SnorriGunnarsso speaks out, "Toyota stealing photos of Flickr"

Update #12 09:30 Mountain 06 Nov 2009
Blogged at Shuaism: "7 Lessons learned from Toyota’s 'borrowed' image follies"

Update #13 15:40 Mountain 06 Nov 2009
Blogged at BNET: "Toyota and Saatchi Used Images From Flickr Without Permission"

Update #14 16:50 Mountain 06 Nov 2009
New Flickr images are showing up on the Toyota 4Runner minisite

But not this version

Update #15 13:30 Mountain 07 Nov 2009

Blogged at Photo Attorney: "Protect Your Flickr Photos"

Update #16 17:30 Mountain 07 Nov 2009

Another great article on this issue Advertising Age: "User-Created Ads Create Rights Conundrum"

Update #17 11:10 Mountain 09 Nov 2009

Another blog post about this issue: A Photo Editor "The bigger the company, the bigger the blunder"

Update #18 10:10 Mountain 10 Nov 2009

Found more articles online:

iMediaConnection: "Toyota's social strategy lands it in hot water"

Adland: "Paris Hilton not amused by 'Vacant' billboard's truth in advertising + Toyotas flickr-pillaging"

Digital Wedding Forum: "Maybe Their Web Designer Did It"

D-Photo: "Billboard Not So Pretty..."

Update #19 08:00 Mountain 15 Nov 2009

Another article: Software Cinema: "More Corporate Thievery, This Time Toyota and Saatchi - Don't They Get The Photographer Needs To Be PAID?"

Update #20 16:00 Mountain 18 Nov 2009

Article by Joseph Pobereskin: "Eat at Joe's: Why Don't I Drive A Prius?"

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

The cutest kid in Denver

As my dear readers know, the Calanan family - and thus the Calanan Photography business - were recently relocated from Salt Lake City, UT to Denver, CO. After a delay to allow for some home improvements in our new (and first!) home the business has been rekindled in a Phoenix-like rise from the proverbial ashes with a family portrait session with the cutest kid in Denver.

Seeking out some Autumn color, we headed over to Denver's Cheesman Park where we found some wonderful foliage that we used both as a backdrop and as a prop for the young Miss F.

Some of my favorite shots from the outing:




Technical specs:

Nikon D700
Nikkor 50mm f/1.8
Nikkor 85mm f/1.8
Nikon SB-800 speedlight (for fill)
Westcott 45" white brolly (for diffusion)

More in this Flickr gallery.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Jolie Holland in Denver

This weekend we had the pleasure of seeing Jolie Holland and Grey Gersten (w/opener Matt Bauer) at The Walnut Room in Denver. We're long-time fans of Jolie (and The Be Good Tanyas) and it was a treat to finally see her perform. Likewise, this was our first trip to Denver's Walnut Room and we look forward to returning for more gigs.

Though I wasn't on assignment, I did haul the old Nikon D700 and Nikkor 85mm f/1.8 lens into the show - I just love this combination, especially for concerts - and took some snapshots as we rocked back and forth to the in my right hand, Great Divide Denver Pale Ale in my left. :)

Jolie Holland

Grey Gersten

Jolie Holland

Jolie's web site is

Some examples of her work, from ♫

"Damn Shame"
"Crazy Dreams"
"Old Fashioned Morphine"
"Springtime Can Kill You"
"I Wanna Die"

Finally, the full gallery and a slideshow:

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Kerby went to the salon

Kerbdog, after his haircut
Nikon D700, Nikkor 50mm f/1.8

Taken shortly after arriving home from his new doggy salon Oona's Dog Groom & Spa, which is staffed by very friendly and talented groomers.

"Will you put that thing down and PLAY with me already?!"
"Will you put that thing down and PLAY with me already?!"
Nikon D700, Tokina 12-24mm f/4

...and yes, I am available for pet portraits, thanks for asking. :)

.a is for animadvert.

.a is for animadvert., originally uploaded by calanan.

Colfax Ave
Denver, CO

Nikon D700
Nikkor 50mm f/1.8

[Part of my "Drive-By Shootings" taken-while-driving street photography series]

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Slightly less 'racially-inclusive' stock photo seen in the wild...

Remember the hullabaloo back in June about the Photoshopped image used on the City of Toronto's Summer Fun Guide? (Google search)

Here's an excerpt from an article in Canada's National Post:

City digitally adds black guy to Fun Guide cover to make it more ‘inclusive'

The smiling, ethnically diverse family featured on the cover of Toronto's latest edition of its summer Fun Guide was digitally altered to make the photo more "inclusive," which city officials say is in keeping with a policy to reflect diversity.

(Hover over the image below to see before-and-after versions)

The original image of the happy family above was a stock photo and it has now found its way into the hands of Qwest Communcation's art department. I just caught it in a rotating ad on Qwest's Residential user landing page:


Funny how some stock photos just seem to pop up over and over and over again. Have any examples of stock photos you've seen recycled in ads? Was your company negatively affected by the use of a recycled stock photo? Post your examples below, thanks!

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Filmy goodness

We took a vacation to Southern Utah (Moab, Dead Horse, Arches) and I brought along my vintage Yashica Mat 124 and some rolls of Fuji Pro 160S.

Yashica Mat 124 (1969)

I love that camera, love not only the images it creates but also the conversation it strikes when I'm carrying it.

Here are some of my favorite snaps from the trip:

Delicate Arch

Landscape Arch

Dead Horse Point Overlook

It's also a nice choice for portraits (though I am in the market for some closeup filters and a lens hood, anyone selling?):


Joe and Pete


More photos with this camera:

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Friday, September 11, 2009

From the archives: Greater Buffalo Red Cross September 11th Remembrance Vigil

Greater Buffalo Red Cross September 11th Remembrance Vigil

"...Beginning Thursday, September 7th at 3:30 p.m., 3,000 flags will be placed on the front lawn of the American Red Cross, each flag representing a person who lost their life during the 9-11 attacks. These flags will remain on display through September 13th."

1969 Yashica Mat 124
Kodak Portra 400 NC

Delaware Ave at Summer
Buffalo, NY


. .

A drive-by with a bonus PIA (photographer in action)

Colfax Ave
Denver, CO

Nikon D700
Nikkor 50mm f/1.8

[Part of my "Drive-By Shootings" street photography series]

Our dog is one strange beast.

Our dog is one strange beast., originally uploaded by calanan.

Colorado Blvd
Denver, CO

Nikon D700
Tokina 12-24mm f/4

Monday, August 31, 2009

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

We're going to miss these two...

We just found out that our close friends here in Denver are relocating to Germany. Bittersweet times indeed. We're going to miss 'em!

Mike and Kristen
Elitch Gardens
Denver, CO

Nikon D700
Nikkor 50mm f/1.8

Tuesday, August 18, 2009


View from the summit

Our friend Mike led us on a hike to a nearby mountain, James Peak near Alice, CO, which has now become the highest summit we've ever reached at 13,294 ft.


Round-Trip Length: 7 miles
Start - End Elevation: 10,385 – 13,294’
Elevation Change: +2,969’

Here's a full description from

It was a tough hike for us, despite living at a mile high we're still not used to altitudes over 11,000' but with frequent stops we were able to slowly ascent to the summit. Once there we were rewarded with sweeping views of the Rockies and could see far east back down to the plains (though not quite as a far as Niagara Falls!) and far north into the Rocky Mountain National Park. It was a fantastic experience and we're looking forward to hiking one the of famous "14ers" (summits over 14,000) soon.

Manray's rockstar photo

Manray and cairn

Mike-the-Vegan, Manray and Me

Descending St. Mary's Glacier

Full slideshow from the hike:

Monday, August 10, 2009


Some more photos of one my favorite subjects, Cam, taken when we first moved to Denver.

Nikon D700
Nikkor 50mm f/1.8
Tokina 12-24mm f/4