Rolf Fehlbaum, the CEO of Vitra is the “Chair” man. Very modestly he explains the why and how of a manufacturing company which started with chairs from Eames and went on and on with an impressive campus with buildings by world famous architects and it’s own design museum.
“Jardin Extraordinaire” (‘The Extraordinary Garden’) collection by Jean Boggio for Franz is finished in a timeless color combination of black and white and features this seemingly simplistic tall chair. It’s when you look closer that you realize it’s anything but simple – the chair’s high back is a white panel with a complicated porcelain jungle design on its front side. With volumetric palm trees, lianas and flowers, the chair back looks like a fine piece of art and is sure to make your dining room feel extraordinary.
Originally trained as a gold and silversmith, French artist Jean Boggio is best known for his jewelry creations – a passion he had since 1984. Ready to explore new artistic perspectives, in 2005 the artist joined forces with the Taiwanese porcelain manufacturer Franz, the collaboration that let Mr. Boggio make his entry into the field of furniture. Together they created a modern collection under the new Jean Boggio for Franz brand.
Successful freelancers never say that they know too many people. On the flip side, failed freelancers say, “I didn’t have a strong enough network.” Which means “I sat at home and didn’t meet people”.
Looking back at the small successes I’ve had, they’ve all started with the people I’ve met. These real-life relationships, handshakes, dinners and conversations that have turned into friendships. Growing your network, making friends and then nurture those relationships, but to do this it takes time and effort.
How do I meet people?
Attend conferences and introduce myself. To start a conversation ask them questions; people generally like to talk about themselves.
Talk to people on Twitter. I actually reply back to tweets.
Realize your potential client will visit several competitor’s websites before they make contact. They’ll call the person they feel can deliver the product/design/photos that they expect and desire. Example: if you’re a photographer with web galleries of black & white wedding pictures but this potential client wants color pictures of their children your portfolio won’t appeal to them. They won’t be able to visualize you taking their children’s pictures.
The good news is you can use this filter to your advantage to target the kinds of clients you want. The client’s critical eye spans further than just your portfolio. They’ll evaluate how the copy on your site is written, how your site looks and even how you talk to them when they call. Everything you do will be judged and if done properly can use to filter your clients into the ones you want.
3. Be a Mediocre Jack of All Trades.
Most people do one thing very, very well. If you’re a designer, don’t be programmer. You’re a photographer don’t try to be a designer. Even if you’re picking up new skills, stop and find someone that is better than you. Hire them for your next project. Sure you’ll spend more money now but your final product will be better. Your portfolio will get better and your next clients will pay more. It’s a beautiful cycle of awesome.
This is the culmination of points 1, 2 and 3. If you meet people and build a network of friends in your industry then make your skill set strong by focusing on one thing and then target the ideal client you’ll be able to charge more for your time. Charge 15% more for your time than you think it’s worth. Most freelancers don’t have the confidence to set their rate at a place where they’re not scrapping the bottom of the barrel for clients. You are good enough to get the rate you deserve.
5. Lose Track of Your Money.
This is the most important point.
Let’s be honest saving money isn’t as fun as spending it. I love buying new things. It’s human nature to want to spend your cash. But every business will have a cash flow hiccup, a dry spell, a downtime.
Now if you’re thinking “I run a good business and do good, things like that won’t happen to me.” you’re wrong! A hiccup in cash flow can happen to anyone even if you’re running a great business. Just look at the businesses along the Gulf Coast and how the BP oil spill effected their businesses. These businesses were faced with an worse economy due to outside forces. The businesses that are surviving have cash saved. Don’t fool yourself, you will hit a dry spell and that cash reserve will save your butt. Keep 2-4 months of overhead in savings. You’ll thank me later.
Other mistakes that just suck
No backup of files, I lost 2 years of data from an external hard drive crash.
Not saving for tax time.
Working from home full-time. Find a coffee shop or coworking desk at least 2 days per week.
Aperture or stop. This is the adjustable hole through which light passes on its way from the subject, through the lens, to the film (or digital sensor). It blocks rays of light except those that form an inverted image by passing through that central point to a corresponding point in the opposite direction on the film.
f/ numbers are a ratio of the diameter of your aperture compared to your lens. Hence, a larger number is a smaller aperture.
Iris diaphragm or simply iris. is a series of overlapping thin metal blades that forms a central hole that is perfectly round wide open or a smaller polygonal hole (which may have curved edges).
Stopping down means to use a smaller, or (depending on context) a relatively small aperture (large f/ number).
Opening up means to use a larger, or (depending on context), a relatively large aperture (small f/ number).
Wide open means to use the largest aperture (smallest f/number).
Depth of field is the front-to-back area that appears fairly sharp. A smaller aperture increases depth of field and decreases the extent to which other objects are blurred. The precise distance of focus, and the noticeability of defocus depends on factors such as subject type, other sources of lack of sharpness, and viewing conditions.
A relatively large depth-of-field is called deep; a relatively small depth-of-field is called shallow.
Diffraction is the behavior of waves passing through small openings limiting the maximum sharpness of all lenses at smaller apertures. It becomes increasingly apparent past f/11 or so, making a great camera and lens no better than a so-so one.
Understand depth of field. There is only one distance at which an objects will be in perfect focus, but sharpness drops off gradually in front of and behind that distance.
If you want great background blur but do not have quite enough depth of field for your subject, focus on the part that will draw the most attention, often the eyes.
Using a longer focal length and a smaller aperture defocuses backgrounds just as well as a longer focal length.
So, if you want shallow depth of field, you can buy a super-fast lens (expensive), or zoom in (free) and set even a cheap smaller-aperture lens wide open.
Assume expensive or prime (non-zoom) lenses are best at f/8, cheap simple ones such as kit lenses are best at f/11, and cheap exotic ones such as superwides or lenses with wide or tele adapters are best at f/16. (With an adapter lens on a point and shoot, stop down as much as possible, perhaps by using the camera’s aperture-priority mode – look in its menus.)
Another practical purpose of depth of field is to set a small aperture and pre-focus the lens to the “hyperfocal distance” (the closest at which the depth of field extends to infinity to be ready to take a picture quickly with a manual-focus camera or a subject moving too fast or unpredictably for autofocus (in which case you’ll need a high shutter speed too).
Understand the interaction of aperture and instantaneous lighting (flash). A wide aperture increases maximum flash range. It also increases effective fill-flash range by reducing the time during which ambient light is allowed in. A small aperture may be needed to prevent overexposure in close-ups. Many cameras can adjust the balance of flash and ambient lighting with “flash exposure compensation”.
Nearly all lenses have lower contrast and are less sharp at their widest aperture, especially towards the corners of your image. This is especially true on point-and-shoot and cheaper lenses. Consequently, if you’re going to have detail in the corners of your pictures that you want to keep sharp, then you’ll want to use a smaller aperture. For flat subjects, f/8 is typically the sharpest aperture. For objects at varying distances a smaller aperture may be better for more depth of field.
Remember that you normally won’t see any of this through your viewfinder (or on your screen as you’re composing.
Zoom lenses can vary depending on how far in or out they are zoomed. Test for the above things at a few different zoom settings.
Diffraction makes almost every lens’s images softer at f/16 and smaller apertures, and conspicuously softer at f/22 and smaller.
Understand aperture-related special effects.
Bokeh, a Japanese word often used to refer to the appearance of out-of-focus areas, especially highlights because those appear as bright blobs. Much has been written about the details of those out-of-focus blobs, which are sometimes brighter in the middle and sometimes a little brighter at the edges, like donuts, or some combination of the two, but at least one author rarely notices it except in bokeh articles. Most importantly, out-of-focus blurs are:
Much larger and more diffuse at wider apertures.
Soft-edged at the widest aperture, due to the perfectly round hole (the edge of a lens, rather than an iris blade).
The shape of the diaphragm opening, when not at the widest aperture. This is most noticeable at wide apertures because they are large. This might be considered unattractive with a lens whose opening does not closely approximate a circle, such as a cheap lens with a five- or six-bladed diaphragm.
Sometimes half-moons rather than circular toward the sides of images at very wide apertures, probably due to one of the lens elements not being as huge as it would have to be to fully illuminate all parts of the image at that aperture, or weirdly extended due to “coma” at very wide apertures (which is pretty much only an issue when taking pictures of lights at night).
Catadioptric (mirror) lenses give donut-shaped bokeh.
Prominently donut-like with mirror-type tele lenses, due to a central obstruction.
Diffraction spikes forming sunstars. Very bright highlights, such as light bulbs at night or small specular reflections of sunlight, will be surrounded by “diffraction spikes” making “sunstars” at small apertures (they are formed by increased diffraction at the points of the polygonal hole formed by the iris). These will either have the same number of points as your lens has aperture blades (if you have an even number of them), due to overlapping of opposite-sides’ spikes, or twice as many (if you have an odd number of aperture blades). They are fainter and less noticeable with lenses with many, many aperture blades (generally odd lenses such as old Leicas).
Get out and shoot. Most importantly Control your depth of field. It’s as simple as this: a smaller aperture means more depth of field, a larger aperture means less. A larger aperture also means more background blur.
Use a small aperture to force more depth of field.
If you’re doing macro photography, for example, you might want to stop down far more than you would for a landscape. Insect photographers often go way down to f/16 or smaller, and have to nuke their subjects with lots of artificial lighting. Large apertures force backgrounds to be thrown out of focus; this is great for portraits, as in this shot made at f/2.
A shallow depth of field is great for portraits (much better than the silly automatic portrait scene modes), for example; use the largest aperture you have, lock your focus on the eyes, recompose and you’ll find the background is thrown out of focus and is, consequently, made less distracting.Remember that opening the aperture like this will cause faster shutter speeds to be chosen. In bright daylight, make sure you aren’t causing your camera to max out its fastest shutter speed (typically 1/4000 on digital SLRs). Keep your ISO low to avoid this.
Shoot for special effects. If you’re photographing lights at night, have adequate camera support, and want sunstars, use a small aperture. If you want large, perfectly rounded bokeh spots (albeit with some incomplete circles), use a wide-open aperture.
Shoot for fill-flash. Use a relatively large aperture and fast shutter speed if necessary to mix flash with daylight so the flash isn’t overwhelmed.
Shoot for optimum technical image quality. If depth of field is not of primary importance (which would generally be the case when pretty much everything in the picture is relatively far from the lens and will be in focus anyway), the shutter speed will be high enough to avoid blur from camera shake and the ISO setting will be low enough to avoid severe noise or other quality loss (which would generally be the case in daytime), you don’t need any aperture-related gimmicks, and any flash is powerful enough to balance with ambient light adequately, set the aperture that gives the best detail with the particular lens being used.
For Canon user, find your Depth of Field preview button:
Then turn the mode to AV mode:
Press and hold your Depth of Field button and move the dial as below:
While you move the dial left and right, look into your lens and check the moving parts in the lens. You will see the aperture diaphragm moving while you moving the dial. For best view, use 50mm F1.8.
AV Mode/A Mode
The best mode to study the behavior of the Aperture is to set the D-SLR mode to Aperture Priority mode (Av for Canon, A for Nikon). Aperture Priority mode enable the photographer to manipulate/control the Aperture’s opens with F-number value indicator at the LCD view. Setting to this mode is the best mode for outdoor shooting or shooting without flash. Most of photographer choose this mode when dealing with very limited time to shoot details of the event or moment.
To control your aperture in this mode, just set your camera to the AV mode/A mode, and move the dial to right to increase th F-value (small aperture) and left to lowering the F-value (wide aperture).
Observe the shutter speed (commonly at left of F-number). The shutter speed change automatically with the F-number that been manipulated. The changes of shutter speed is to balance the light enter to the sensor. When the aperture set to wide (for example, F1.8) the shutter speed will be speedup (for example 1/1000). The shutter speed speedup to control/balance the light that enter from the wide aperture that set earlier (remember, wide aperture, more light enter, shutter speed increase automatically to balance the amount of the light enter). So, in this case, the manipulated variable is the aperture, and the responding variable is shutter speed.
The relationship between the Aperture and Shutter Speed can be explain as below:
Clearly, the aperture vs shutter speed is directly proportional. But this condition only valid for certain assumption that need to take, such as ISO control, the ambient light condition, flash manipulating, etc.
(So, the introduction of theories of Aperture behaviors and controls that you just read it only to gain basic knowledge about the component of the aperture, so that you enable to thinks critically about how to control the light to the sensor and exposure of the image)