Malia Campbell Photography

Seattle Real Estate Photography by Malia Campbell

Archive for October 2009

Review: Wacom Intuos4

With HDR photography, real estate or otherwise, there tends to be a lot of post processing involved. I’m still pretty new to all of this (read: slow) so a typical house takes me about 20 minutes to shoot but up to two(ish) hours to post process. Photos that I want to use in my portfolio, however, take much longer. Much. Longer.  This swimming pool shot, for example, took me a little over two hours to process.  After that amount of time, working with a mouse, my wrists are sore and my hand is cramped into a painful mouse-claw.

I’ve worked with borrowed tablets before with great enthusiam before finally purchasing a Wacom Graphire Bluetooth tablet.  I really like the idea of a wireless tablet but in reality this tablet is not ideal for any kind of photo processing.  The Bluetooth connection has a delay which makes any detail work impossible.  After much thought I’ve concluded that the only thing this tablet can be used for is writing and even that would take a tremendous amount of effort to acclimate to.

That tablet was returned almost immediately and I went back to the mouse-claw with (not so) secret fantasies of the WacomIntuos3 tablet. This is the borrowed tablet I’d worked with in the past and, though tethered by a USB cable, I loved it. Around this time, though, I noticed a discussion in the PFRE group about tablets and there was mention of the Wacom Bamboo tablet, which can be purchased for around $100.  Shortly after this the Intuos4 tablet was released so I had a decision to make.  Do I get the bare bones, cheaper model and save a few bucks or do I invest in something a little nicer, a little sturdier and a little more expensive?

I had been working with another Seattle-based photographer who uses the Bamboo tablet and saw it in action and decided that if it was good enough for him, it would be good enough for me.  The $200 price difference could fund a batch of postcards or an upgrade in my website.

I headed down to Fry’s Electronics and discovered that they did not have the Bamboo tablet at the price they advertised but they had the Intuos4 at a price that I could swallow.  So with that super long introduction here are my thoughts on the Intuos4 tablet:

Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Malia Campbell Photography

October 27, 2009 at 7:38 pm

Posted in Reviews

Batch settings in Photomatix

This is probably pretty obvious but I just discovered it so maybe you don’t already know it…?

Oh and this was, like, my 50th attempt at recording this so toward the end I sort of… peter…


a little.

Don’t laugh.  Or if you do I don’t want to know about it.  Thanks in advance.

Written by Malia Campbell Photography

October 24, 2009 at 7:28 pm

Posted in HDR Tutorials, How To, Video


I’ve been to the Avedon exhibit at the SFMoMA twice now (and hopefully a few more times before it moves on) and have let myself become a bit obsessed with his work.

I’m completely in love with this photo:

The movement, the mood, the lighting… everything just works.  This is inspiring me to try some new things with my photography.  Stay tuned.

Written by Malia Campbell Photography

October 12, 2009 at 9:14 pm

Posted in Inspiration, Words

Photo of the Day


3 exposure HDR

Written by Malia Campbell Photography

October 12, 2009 at 5:11 pm

Posted in Photo of the Day

Speaking of Overnight Prints

overnight prints

Hey, speaking of Overnight Prints – they’re running a 50% off promotion on postcards!  Just use code: PCSOCT when ordering.

Written by Malia Campbell Photography

October 12, 2009 at 8:32 am

Posted in Words

New Postcards!


I just received my new postcards from and they look terrific!  Seen to the right is the front of my postcard, printed at 8.5″ x 5.5″ with a glossy finish.

As you may observe the colors online are a bit washed out.  That is my one and only challenge with Overnight Prints – the color control is a bit tricky – even in sRGB.  I discovered, on my first batch of postcards, the colors were a bit more saturated than I anticipated so this time I desaturated a bit – about 5% – and that was perfect.  Also, in the image below the red banner matches the red floor runner but in print the banner is much softer (more pink than red).  It’s enough of a difference that it’s not obvious I was trying to match the colors so I’m not terribly bothered by this but if those kinds of details are important to you be cautioned.  postcard-back-v3

Overnight Prints is efficient, priced right and deliver an excellent product.  They have several templates to choose from or you can upload your own design.  They offer user guides to help you with either process which makes it easy for anyone of any level.

Overnight Prints offers free glossy finish, above average customer service and, if you don’t mind a little “spam” enough freebies and discount codes to keep me as a loyal customer.  I also had business cards printed and they look amazing, as well!  For this price point, I can’t recommend a better company to print with.

With a little nudging from my “mentor” I decided to try something a little different with this group of cards and printed my rates on the back.  I reasoned that many agents may not realize how affordable good photography can be while on the flip side, hopefully this will deter agents who don’t value photography from wasting my (and their own) time.

Next step: a big “Stop and Drop.”  Wish me luck!

Written by Malia Campbell Photography

October 7, 2009 at 11:44 am

Film! Bah!

Every time I return from my local film lab I vow to never shoot film again!   It’s expensive to develop¹ and I’m not good enough at film to make the development worth the money.  Awhile ago I dibbed and received a full dark room kit – tubs, reels, enlargers (I have two now!), timers, etc – with the notion that I would do my own developing but in my teeny tiny² studio apartment there just isn’t space.  Or an area that I can seal off light leaks.

That said, I can’t seem to help myself.  Last Christmas I receive a Holga and have been obsessed with film since.  I’ve had several film cameras before but none as fun as the Holga.  Part of its charm is the mystery of what will be captured – light leaks, fuzzy focus, misfired shutters.  The not knowing is intoxicating. 

After the Holga I began really thinking about medium format.  I had a Yashica Mat 124-G a year or so ago but never really had the time to master it so sold it in a decluttering frenzy.  I’ve always kind of regretted that so I replaced it with a Bronica ETRS.  I bought the Bronny body with the prism finder for pretty cheap and had planned on buying the rest of the accessories (the film insert and lens) but then the economy hit and I found myself unemployed.

Tonight I dug up the body and rediscovered my obsession with this camera.  I’ve been reading owners manuals, surfing photos and watching YouTube videos, trying to learn how to use this camera.  I just bought, inexpensively from, a 120 and a 220 film insert so now all that’s left to purchase is the lens.  Seems like I can get basic lens for around $100-150 which seems about right. I’m not sure what lens to start with, though. My favorite lens for Gollum was my 50 mm (RIP Little Fifty) and the price for a 50 for the Bronny is just about right.

What do you think?  Do you have any experience with this type of camera?  Any suggestions? I’d love to hear them!

¹ Okay, that’s not quite true.  The development is pretty cheap.  $5.00 per roll, I think.  What’s expensive is having them scan the film.  Okay, that’s not true either.  Developing and scanning is pretty cheap.  What’s expensive is the CD they burn the scanned negatives onto.  $17.00 per roll of film!

² That’s another lie.  My place is almost 800 square feet.  The layout, though, is difficult.  There are no doors so it feels like a big, U-shaped studio apartment.

Written by Malia Campbell Photography

October 6, 2009 at 7:49 pm

Posted in Words

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