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Did you know about the upcoming What If Conference?! If not, be informed. This is about to be one of the best, most uplifting, positive, challenging business/photography related conferences available!

My amazing husband Justin has been invited to speak and attend as an innovator at the What If Conference January 23rd-26th. He's been invited to consult and share his thoughts, ideas, and experiences with those in attendance. Since Justin is both a photographer and a successful producer, he has much to impart and a unique background. There have been so many times in his career when he's had to think about the very question: WHAT IF?! What if he never took leaps of faith? What if he didn't follow his dreams in producing? What if he was too scared to face the unknown? What if he listened to what others thought about his passions? What if he let go of all his inhibitions, with a full face forward and let the amazing things life has to offer come his way? WHAT IF?

Ever since I've known Justin, he's had a "streak of luck". He always gets the best parking spot in a busy parking lot, he always seems to be meeting the right people he needs to for producing, and he always has a positive outlook on life because of it. In fact, anyone that knows him can say that he always happens to be in the right place at the right time to get exactly what he wants! I can vouch that this "lucky streak" is not luck at all, it's Justin creating that luck, being brave and basically barging his way into life's opportunities. Again, it's that "what if" in his mind that he is constantly living by and has brought him much success in life (that's how he won my heart over when we first met). 
Interested in attending this conference? There is still time to sign up and reserve your spot!!! Plus, this conference is ridiculously affordable! Click here for details!

I'm super excited for him to share all that he has learned over the past decade and the value of asking himself WHAT IF? Here is what the What If team has had to say about him:

Justin is the consummate business-creative. Working in two very competitive fields, and finding success in both, Justin knows first hand the value of hard work. He will be sharing tips and tricks for a successful CREATIVE BUSINESS, tools for building that business while maintaining your creativity, and how to stay the course when the going gets tough.

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Mr. Haack said:
Wow Amelia! Awesome writing about Justin and his What if approach. I have definitely seen him in action and it's awesome how he just goes after what he wants. Just got me so inspired to think more this way. I'm sure this will be a super rad conference for anyone who goes will take so much away from it.
(01.07.12 11:37 AM)
First said:
Wow! photos are really great.
(01.08.12 06:12 PM)
Shamim said:
very impressive ! love this post! keep up!
(07.27.12 04:27 AM)
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I am constantly receiving emails from fellow photographers (old and new) who want to know how I handle the post processing of my images. So I'm dedicating this entire post to just that! 

First, I want to express an opinion: A photo shouldn't just be shot, burned to a disc, then handed over to the client...if you're a digital photographer (and an artist at that), one must work on the images. Even if it's proofs being handed back to the client, never, I repeat, NEVER, give a client an untouched image! Would a painter hand over a paying client an almost blank canvas with just the pencil sketches? No. Especially when the paying client is expecting "art"! They hire you to do what they cannot do for themselves. We are artists, lets be respectful to our paying clients and deliver to them the amazing photos they are expecting out of us!

Okay, now that I'm done ranting I want to give credit to the amazing companies that make my life 100 times easier when it comes to the post processing of my images. These two companies are Fotofafa and TOTALLY RAD ACTIONS! I use both of these companies separately for two totally different purposes and I'll explain that below. I'm proud to be an affiliate for both of these companies, because as I rave about them constantly (they deserve it more than they know) they are "scratching my back" with beautiful images I can give to my clients and in return I get to share what they do, along with how awesome I truly believe they are for a small percentage return in my pocket.

Plus, I thought this would be the perfect time to share about these two companies because both Fotofafa and TOTALLY RAD ACTIONS! are running HUGE Black Friday sales, see below to take advantage of that as long as it lasts:

To redeem the discount for 15% off at TOTALLY RAD ACTIONS! type in the coupon code 1016BLACKFRIDAY (you don't want to miss out on the RadLab if you don't already have it). Their sale is only running for 24 hours only on 11/25/11!

To redeem the discounts and HUGE savings from Fotofafa during their Black Friday sale, be sure to type in the coupon code  LYON11. Their sale is currently running through Monday 11/28/11!

Working on images takes time, we all know that, and if not time-managed properly, post processing of images can take over your life, which will in turn make you abhor the job you once loved. I am a complete believer in outsourcing so that I can have more time to do the things that I love, like spending time with my family, going out on a date with my husband, or even at this time of year taking time off for the holidays.

After shooting a wedding with 3,000 plus images, I get to send all of my photos over to Fotofafa to cull down and process into beautifully proofed jpegs. They take each image and color correct to my preference, adjust the white balance, perfect my exposure, and even add contrast if I need them to.

Here are a few recent images I received back from Fotofafa along with my raw (in camera) image so you can see the before & after:

This image seemed a bit dull and I like how Fotofafa brought it to life.
tra_fotofafa001.jpgI love how they were able to bring out he details in the blacks and still keep the contrast up.
tra_fotofafa002.jpgEven the slightest adjustment in white-balance can make a huge difference.
Before I send all of my images over to Fotofafa, I like to go through and choose my favorites that will be featured on my blog, used for the slideshow, and ultimately used for my clients' wedding albums. Totally Rad Actions help me to "artistically edit" my favorite images and retouch them into a complete work of art.

Here are a few of my favorite recipes played on the following photos using Totally Rad Actions through their new RadLab...(which is seriously RAD and beyond easy to use!).

Recipe for black & white conversion using TRA within RadLab (note: all of my black and white images are always desaturated prior to the following steps):
1. Detroit reduced down to 50% and tone compression increased up to 130%
2. Grainstorm at 100%
3. Get Faded Neutral reduced down to 30%
4. Boutwell Magic Glasses reduced down to 50%

tra_fotofafa004.jpgHere is the color recipe I used for these next two images using the Totally Rad Actions within RadLab (the best part about Radlab is that it is very visual and you don't have to be a rocket scientist to use it):

1. Cool As A Cucumber reduced down to 50%
2. Get Faded Spring reduced down to 60%
3. The 600 reduced down to 50% with grain down to 15% and the defocus down to 0%
4. Boutwell Magic Glasses reduced down to 50%
Again, a HUGE shout-out to Fotofafa & Totally Rad Actions for making my life easier, especially during the holidays when I really want to get things done fast in order to have more time to myself and all the while still being able to deliver the quality images my clients deserve!
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Paco & Betty said:
We agree, we use and love both!
(11.23.11 01:49 PM)
Jonathan Connolly said:
Nice. Thank you for sharing the recipes! I recently got a order back from Fotofafa and they did such a great job!
(11.23.11 02:57 PM)
Mindy said:
I love when you post things like this!! Thank you for sharing!! :) Also, do you have an average number that you will "artistically edit" for clients, before sending them to Fotofafa? You artistically edit those and then when Fotofafa delivers the rest you are done? Sounds amazing! :) Thanks again! Your work is such an inspiration!
(11.23.11 08:38 PM)
Louis Blythe said:
Thanks for these. Great Comparisons!
(11.29.11 08:04 PM)
Emily said:
Hi Amelia, thank you for sharing! I was wondering if the client then receives all the fotofafa images on a disc and then the only ones you add your own artisitic touches to are the ones the client chooses to purchase in print and in their albums? Obviously, you additionally edit what comes back from fotofafa for your blog. I have been struggling with whether I edit them all with my own presets or if I color re-touch then only personally add my own touch to their chosen prints and album choices? Thanks so much for your help! You are a gem to help other photogs out!
(12.02.11 12:44 PM)
oddessyjain said:
Those images are really great.
(01.22.12 07:37 PM)
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