Action Camera! Compact and versatile!

While planning a trip to Belize, I realized I needed a camera that can go from the mountains to the beaches, so it needed to be waterproof, and fairly rugged.  I was already planning on taking my pocket shooter – but this trip had a lot of adventure tours; meaning that I would not want my expensive DSLR or Bridge camera along.   I needed something different.

I was considering the GoPro Hero Action Camera:

GoPro Hero 8 Bundle with accessories - available on Amazon

GoPro Hero 8 Bundle with accessories – available on Amazon

The GoPro is Ideal; can take pictures or movies, has an Waterproof case for underwater shots, and has numerous adapters for helmets, bikes, chest mount, and more!

Since I am always looking for the better way, I called my cousin Barry Shapiro, who does commercial  television and movie productions.  Barry said his crew was using GoPro’s and “cheap action cameras” because of their capability, size, versatility, and the fact that they are easily and cheaply replaceable.  I have to admit, this sounded really good, so I took his advice and bought

Campark 4K WiFi Action Camera Touch Screen, Web Cam,PC Camera 170° Wide Angle EIS Stabilization 30M Underwater 2 Batteries and Multiple Accessories Kit Compatible with GoPro
Campark 4K WiFi Action Camera Touch Screen, Web Cam,PC Camera 170° Wide Angle EIS Stabilization 30M Underwater 2 Batteries and Multiple Accessories Kit Compatible with GoPro – from Amazon

I liked this camera (there are lots of choices!) because it came with some basic accessories, two batteries, and could shoot at 16 megapixels.  Since it was well under a hundred dollars, I immediately decided to accessorize!

Neewer 44-in-1 Action Camera Accessory Kit, Compatible with GoPro Hero 4/5 Session, Hero 1/2/3/3+/4/5/6, SJ4000/5000, Nikon and Sony Sports Dv in Swimming Rowing Climbing Bike Riding Camping and More
Neewer 44-in-1 Action Camera Accessory Kit, Compatible with GoPro Hero 4/5 Session, Hero 1/2/3/3+/4/5/6, SJ4000/5000, Nikon and Sony Sports Dv in Swimming Rowing Climbing Bike Riding Camping and More – Available from Amazon

This gave me a carrying case, floating strap, chest, head, and arm mounts, and more.  I was like a kid in a candy store – and I had not yet spent $100!!!  My Cousin Barry told me all the guys on set use this action mount to put a camera almost anywhere – So I bought that too!  It is versatile and strong enough to hold my other cameras as well!

TOAZOE 11" Adjustable Robust Articulating Friction Magic Arm Clamp Holder Mounts Kit for DSLR/Mirrorless/Action Camera/Camcorder/LCD Monitor Video Vlog Rig w/Smartphone/iPhone/GoPro/Arlo etc
TOAZOE 11″ Adjustable Robust Articulating Friction Magic Arm Clamp Holder Mounts Kit for DSLR/Mirrorless/Action Camera/Camcorder/LCD Monitor Video Vlog Rig w/Smartphone/iPhone/GoPro/Arlo etc – Available from Amazon

But I didn’t stop there, I knew I also needed

32 MB microSD card (I bought 2)

Safety straps (to secure the camera in case you have it in a precarious position) (this set comes with caribiners)

FYI:  I bought everything from Amazon, because I am a Prime member and could get everything within a few days.  I also wanted to test out the equipment and understand it before the trip, and become familiar with it.  As for the pocket shooter I was taking, I have a waterproof case to transport it, so I could use it without having to dismount the Action cam.  The Pocket shooter (a Canon) has a long zoom and more settings than the Action cam – They complement each other well.

You can get everything from eBay as well; Here are some links:

eBay definitely has some great pricing, but double-check the delivery dates!

There are a lot of good videos on using action cameras – check YouTube because you will get some great ideas (like getting tether straps) and tips for underwater photography.

I will be adding some photos and more as I use this cute little camera – I can’t wait to take it on a trip, and tell you all about it!

 

 

What’s it like to work as a paparazzi?

By Alan Chenkin, Learned about celebrities reading magazines at the supermarket checkout
Being a Paparazzi is hours of boredom, moments of action (when a celebrity may be sighted, and photographed), and negotiation for fees for pictures. It is surveillance work, and requires some detective work, knowing people who can give you information on a specific star’s whereabouts, (and sometimes paying for the info). You also can be detested, Scorned, punched/threatened/assaulted, and jailed, if you are too aggressive. You also may be carrying expensive lenses and cameras, which can be subject to damage. If you are good, the reward is cash for your photos. You also have to know publicists, who may compel you to photograph their clients so they can get exposure in the tabloids.
How Paparazzi Work – How Stuff works
Oops! I'm the Paparazzi.
Paparazzi exist to feed the hunger of the press and the famous for more exposure – While I am sure many are professional and have some respect for the subjects, many are invasive and push the limits to get their pictures.  This can mean anything from an argument with a celebrity (or their bodyguards) to a fight that ends with someone arrested, or even loss of life (in the case of Princess Diana).
Reddit discussion– “If stalking is a crime,why are paparazzi tolerated?”
And now, Paparazzi need to be savvy with operating Drones!
Up and coming stars seek out the attention of Paparazzi to get more exposure and celebrity status.  If they are fortunate and become famous, they frequently “turn” on the paparazzi and deny them access, abandoning the resource they needed to get their fame.
So if I have not freaked you out, please hire me to train you as a world-class drone piloting, risk-taking Paparazzi at my famous photographer school. (Just joking, although a kickstarter for this may be fun).  Take a look at my Photography blog: The Good Shots.
Thanks for reading my blog! – Feel free to upvote, like, repost and share!
Edited and expanded from my answer on Quora.
 
 

Need a new pocket shooter? Check out this camera….

Contrary to popular belief, I don’t lug a lot of camera equipment around.  Not that I don’t want to, but casual camera work does not always require a DSLR and a bag or two of “must carry” equipment, like lights, backdrops, extra lenses, etc. etc.

My first pocket camera was a Nikon, and it was small (a big plus) but lacked resolution and zoom features.  It served me well until I gave it to my grandson, and he got a lot of use out of it.

Even though I have a great camera in my Google Pixel XL smartphone, I find the lenses and sensors on a small camera make for great pictures.  especially if you want to blow them up, or make extensive editing/cropping.

After the Nikon, I got a Canon SX600.  compact, fits in a shirt pocket, and decent battery life.  It did have wifi, but no bluetooth.  18x zoom, 3″ LCD screen, and 16MP resolution.  While it still is one of my favorites, I felt it was time for Bluetooth and more zoom.  (I love more Zoom)!

So I got myself a new SX730HS, like this:

The Canon SX 730 HS (specifications), Available on Amazon and eBay

The 40x optical zoom is awesome, especially for a camera of it’s size. With image stabilization (tip: use a tripod or rest it on a railing for steadying it at maximum zoom) it gets in really close.  With a 20.3 mega pixel image, Bluetooth, and wifi, you have a lot of bases covered.  It also has a feature called “image assist”, to keep your subject in focus as you zoom.  (Did I mention I like to zoom)?

The Unforgettable Photograph: 228 Ideas, Tips, and Secrets for Taking the Best Pictures of Your Life, from Amazon Books

The camera is a little bit larger than what I would have liked, it’s big for my pocket and I keep it in a LowePro Tahoe case from Amazon.  I also use a carabiner to clip it to my belt loop.  It fits nicely in a suit  jacket pocket or a coat.  I like to keep it handy, but don’t like it to be exposed to the elements or potential crooks.  The LowePro case has a pocket for spare batteries and an SD card or two.  This comes in real handy when your battery dies and you are taking some really promising shots.

I also strongly suggest you get a set of spare batteries and an extra charger so that you always have a fresh battery on hand, especially if you shoot movies.

SX730 batteries and chargers on Amazon

SX730 batteries and chargers on eBay

The Canon SX730 HS is a comfortable and efficient camera for all around snapshots, with the capability to wirelessly transmit your pictures to your smartphone, which will send them to the cloud.

I would feel very comfortable taking this camera on vacation, because of it’s size and features.  You can shoot on full automatic or use the shutter/aperture, and scene settings to your best advantage.  Not to mention movies.

Here is hoping you enjoy all the pictures you take!