You've scouted the wedding location? Now the wedding day!


So in a previous post I gave my opinion that, yes, you should absolutely scout out a location of a wedding before the day of. The practice of which can get you more prepared for an event and comfortable in knowing the physical layout, lighting, flooring, where the bathrooms are, where to park, etc.

I try do this for a lot of my shoots, and recently had a wedding at a local hotel and having visited this venue before I felt this was extremely beneficial and had a more fluid and less stress filled shoot.

1. Stairs

Since I had remembered the main staircase I was able to know where to place myself, where the couple would be headed (the main reception area to camera left) and get some great images of the couple and their procession. 


2. Reception Room

Knowing the size and layout of the room used for the main reception area I was able to find out the location for the dance floor, the size of tables (to move around with equipment) where the kitchen doors are (you do not want to block the pathway of the staff) and finally I could see the ceilings are low enough that I can bounce flash off them if needed. (Walls in the above images would not be up as staff told me).

3. Outside

The area just outside of the main reception area there is a small patio and grassy are as shown in the previous post. 

This was good to have the layout of the cement vs the grassy area as the wedding had a fire dancer for an evening display of light and danger. Being aware of the small area in which the display would be I was able to position myself near the flame and not blocked by the audience. 


These and other shots throughout the night were in part captured with the knowledge that I had from a quick 10 minute trip before the event.

Do you normally scout of locations pick by clients beforehand? What is your method of preparation before a shoot? Share your thoughts below and as always.

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Summer is the time of flea markets - Looking back at 2016s

I love festivals, markets and other such events that are hosted only when the weather is good.

It's a great place to get knick knacks, inspiration for photo ideas, pick up an old camera or just people watch and grab a lime-aid or such other cool drinks for the heat.

This post is a selection of images from the last flea market in the 2016 season. 

Here's looking forward to the 2017 summer!

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YES You should scout out your next wedding venue - Searching the unknown.

Whenever accepting a new job, you always should ask a few questions.


One of the most important questions "Where will ______ be held?"


So, recently I met with an amazing couple to grab a coffee and discuss their upcoming wedding. After learning the facts such as how many guests, expectations of the bride, length of the event etc... These bits of info all really effect the other important bit of info on the location/venue.

They said that there was a ceremony at a neighborhood church, and then the reception at the mountain side Marriott Hotel in Salt Lake City. 

Now, having never been to these locations I always think it is a good idea to take 20 minutes and scout out these spaces before I show up and find myself unprepared.

-The Marriott-

(From Parking Lot)

Now, so far there is nothing crazy, you have to get in there, see the available area, but at least I know where to park now.

(Scan of the lobby)

(Opposite view just over the blacony)

Now, getting the layout of the overall hotel, I can tell there is a lot of window light and spaces that I can sneak the couple out for shots when I can. 

I can place them in chairs, with and without windows open.. etc As seen below. Getting some really nice portrait set ups.

Then, the venue/main area which is on the lower level of the hotel.

The entrance is just near the fore mentioned chairs and at the bottom of this staircase.

Entering the room I was told the dividers would be up, but the room is usually un-sectioned off and ready for large groups. Pictured below, you can see the divider and the general layout of the space (what is viewed here is onnly 1/3 of the overall space.

Now... The last thing to check out is the small patio area that should be available for shooting some portraits.

(*Note these images were taken if Feb. and the event is in April, so the presence of snow is not expected the day of.) 

So what?

What does this even do, scouting a location, finding out what to expect?

Ok, well I will break down what it means to me.

1. I now know where I can park...

2. I know how far I might need to unload lights, carry bags, where I can set and set up these this as well...

3. I need to bring lights! From this mini tour I have seen that while the lobby and open area of the lower floor have a good level of light, lots from windows. Then room itself, assigned for the event has zero windows and only (warm) lighting from the ceiling...

4. There are a bunch of spots to steal the couple away for some quick portraits... 

(I can use chairs, window light, brick wall outside, the tree line outside, the archway outside, the staircase shooting up at the couple... I can put them against a blank wall I can shoot down from the top level getting them and the pattern on the carpet.)


Basically, I now feel more prepped for this event, I feel excited about the opportunities and the shots I can get. I know where my equipment can be set up and have that out of my mind to focus on the tasks at hand. 

Now I can get the couple, my client... The best photos I can.

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Portrait of a band - WEATHERS - Salt Lake City @ The Comeplex

"We're already here, lets do it."

... That is something I say to myself or my clients on almost every shoot. 

Usually when you are getting some photos, portrait, group, family, whatever. You always have this feeling when you "have enough" or "have enough to work with", that is always a nice feeling, the I've done my job feeling.

But then you always have another idea, another location, and if you're client/subject is willing I always say ask, and ask if they have any ideas, try something new.

Always trying to keep this in mind, when I was at a concert, taking a portrait of the band Saint Motel (See blog post).

The supporting musical group WEATHERS was also there. I took the opportunity to offer to take their portrait as well.

My lights already set up, my settings dialed in. All I did was change the background and subject for a great effect.

Here are the two keepers from that 90 second shoot.

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Portrait of a band - Saint Motel - Salt Lake City @ The Complex

Recently I had the chance to take a portrait of one of the best new bands touring today.

Saint Motel right on the heels of the release of saintmotelevision [Explicit] they stop their tour to perform in Salt Lake City Utah at the downtown venue The Complex.

I was contacted by their representation to cover this show. Having had the privilege to shoot this group before and gotten to know it's members, I jumped at the chance to cover, really focusing on a group photo that was the focus of the event.

I arrived at the venue a tad early with my lights and gear and waited to be shown the available shooting space. The idea of outside was discussed, maybe even on the tour bus? But we eventually just decided on the green room for the shoot, super casual.

The green room consisted of a few couches and a small to medium sized room.

I grab my rental D1 kit from Pictureline in Salt Lake City. Open up the case and set up only one of the monolights due to the space. One with the softbox umbrella I brought along can definitely fill the room for a group of four.

Cameron of Weathers graciously being kicked out of the space for the photo.

With only a few minutes to shoot, I quickly decided that I would use the corner, have twomembers on each side and just have them place themselves as they are no stranger to being in front of the lens. I quickly took a few test shots, chimping at the preview and then adjusting to my taste to what I knew I could work with for a great portrait.

Members of the LA band Weathers offer the space to use and leave the room for a few minutes to shoot.

Way too bright, quickly need to bring the settings in a tad.

A tad too bright, I then bring the aperture in a bit to shut out some extra exposure.

A tad too bright, I then bring the aperture in a bit to shut out some extra exposure.

Just about right, a little highlight on the skin, still some shadows and blacks, a lot to work with.

So then the guys take their places, I said whatever they wanted, throwing a few ideas out about sitting on an arm or feet on the table. But really I knew they knew what to do, they sat as they saw fit, a/j was already dressed in a coat with an umbrella form being outside. Effortless.

After a few shots I really appreciate the comfort-ability level with the shoot. I wanted to get some great shots and also be quick and get out of their hair.

These are the two "keepers" that I wanted to share.

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Saint Motels "Move" -- See them live if you have the chance!

Love Not Hate - March for Peace in downtown SLC 11.19.16

People from Salt Lake City gather at the capitol to display their signs and their passion for spreading love over hate.

After some numbers had gathered, the group formed into a line, peacefully crossing the street and city, heading down the hill into downtown.

Making the rounds on downtown Salt Lake City. Chants of "Love is Louder than Hate!" and "We Choose Compassion!" Fill the streets.

Spreading love is an uphill affair.

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Shooting Tegan and Sara @ In The Venue, SLC

The downtown event host, In The Venue is the spot for this show from Tegan and Sara. The indie pop duo fresh off their 8th album.

I was there to take some photos.

Lines are already formed as I walked to the venue.

Wrapping all around the outside, fans brave the wind and rain to get in to the show.

Once indie you have to make your way in and out of the crowd, passing local radio booths, merch tables and bars.

I always need to get a few fan portraits. I grab some people that either look super interesting to me or they are they type that make eye contact with me and I will grab them for a quick portrait. Here are some of those.

Then it was that time for the opening act. Shura, an English singer/songwriter that tours with a supporting band.

Then the headliners. Tegan and Sara with their touring band as well.

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Part 2 of 3 - Swim Team Member Portraits @ J & Jeanné Wagner Jewish Community Center

Continuing with part 2 of this overall shoot experience...

After initial group portraits, parents eagerly wait in the sidelines for the next stage. individual portraits.

I start immediately after the group shot by moving my lighting set up to a more closed off corner just a few feet away (pictured below). With a nice green and pink floral background and soft light in the shadows of the building I line up the subjects for their portraits.

Metering for the background again, and allowing the quick and reliable TLL capabilities of the Profoto B2 kit I had the few brave young subjects step into my makeshift studio and make their experience fun.

As like the other group photographs taken this day, slight adjustments were made for exposure, warmth and adjusting the tone cure slightly for effect.

Stay Tuned!

For part 3 of three which will cover the giant group portrait of over fifty kids! As well as the remaining single portraits.

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Part 1 of 3 - Swim Team Photos @ J & Jeanné Wagner Jewish Community Center

This summer I had the opportunity to take some portraits of the youth swim teams at the IJ & Jeanné Wagner Jewish Community Center... 

I had a great experience and wanted to share some of my steps in preparing, capturing and editing these images.

Having taken portraits of various sizes of teams, families and concert goers, I took this opportunity to expand my skills in large group portraiture. This was a shoot that needed minutes of research as the size of the group and the location of the shoot were at the time unknown.

The area available to me being the community center pool area, I decided to both arrive early and I also used google earth to get some ideas as to where to place my subjects and my lighting set up.

Not knowing if the pool area would be totally crowded or chairs laid out all over. I thought that the best staging area would be the top of the pool's swim lanes (as highlighted in red). A straight line to arrange the subjects and with the pool as the background there was just enough space for my lighting set up and camera.

I arrived about 20 minutes early with the need to set up and get some last minute checks out of the way. I found myself with 4-5 feet of room for each group another 2-3 feet for lighting and tripod. I checked my batteries, set up lights and roughly composed my shot.

Set up was:

 1) Photoflex Reflective Umbrella 2) 71 inch shoot though umbrella from Neewer 3) Profoto B2 Location Kit (rental from local store Pictureline: Kit including Manfrotto lightstands, B2 heads) 4) Sandbags: *Must have especially when outdoors and with wind catching umbrellas near a pool.... 5) Lowpro Backpack of mine propped on the bigger lightstand for added weight on this stand with the massive modifier. 

Lastly with my camera (not pictured because I took the picture with it.) A Canon 6D with a Tamron 24-70 f/2.8 zoom lens.

Swim Teams' POV of the set up.

As shown in the EXIF data from the image below, I was in manual mode, had an aperture of f/6.3 for deep enough for focus on a small group at the focal length of 27mm while still having a reasonably fast shutter speed of  1/160. I arrived at these settings by metering for the sky behind the group allowing for the blues to be visible and highlights not blown out. Then letting the TTL capable Profoto B2 pop off as much light as needed to light my subjects.

*A helpful aspect of the shoot: Talking with the coaches before and during the shoot. I observed that the swim teams looked up to and followed instructions of their adult teachers very well. I was easily able to have the attention of the group and have them at ease (for a few minutes anyway). We took a bunch of shots rapid fire asking for both "serious" faces as well as a "crazy face" (as seen in final gallery). 

As for editing the images:

Below is a straight out of camera (SOOC) image. You can see that overall exposure is pretty decent, only a few tweak are necessary as well as a quick straightening and removal of two life guards that I had failed to account for while focused on my subjects.

Making a few basic changes such as a slight reduction in overall exposure, bringing down the highlights and whites to give details back and adjusting the tone curve to fit my tastes. With a dash of warmth to compensate for the early morning blue hue I have create what I think is a solid portrait of these kids that in my mind would hang on their parents walls for all eternity. 

With this similar formula repeated in a few of my "keepers" from the shoot, here are a few of the finals that were sent to the client for your viewing pleasure.

STAY TUNED for Part 2 and 3 of this overall JCC Swim Team Shoot.

Up Next: Solo Swim Team Member Portraits.

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Be sure to let me know your thoughts and of course...

Be sure to contact me at LOGAN@LMSORENSON.NET 

or at (801) 455-9957

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Hip Hop and Beat Box Competition - Downtown SLC

I recently was hired to take capture some of this locally arranged, locally performed. Hip Hop and Beat Box Competition. 

Video and photos of the event overall are posted below.


Thanks for looking!

If you are in need of Photography,

Be sure to let me know your thoughts and of course...

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or at (801) 455-9957

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Family Portraits - Locations, Lighting and Equipment

Taking family photos is always a different experience, out of a studio, in a new space with multiple variables. This blog post should serve as an example in some things that you might run into and have to adapt to as your shoot progresses.

One such instance was earlier this year. At a families home, they arranged the shoot to coincide with their newborns first birthday. There are many people around as they had me arrive and some of the next points are just some of the things you have to be aware of.

Equipment used:
Softbox 24" x 36" with Grid
Canon 600ex RT Speedlight
Heavyduty Saddlebag Sandbag
Yongnuo Transceiver of YN622 YN-622C (x2)
Tamron SP 24-70mm f/2.8 Di VC USD
Canon 6D

1. When shooting in a new location, or an uncontrolled location, you have to adapt and go with your best option.

Now with this particular house, there was a front yard and a back yard as options as the house is not well lit and has guests. With party supplies all over the back yard and a patio taking up most of the available space (marked in yellow) the only option seemed the front fence side corner of the property. (Marked in red). (Images via google maps)

2. Position and Lighting

I grabbed a light stand weighted down with the sandbag and set up my collapsible soft box, mounting in the trigger and speedlight.

Now that I have the scene set, I am using TTL through the Yongnuo controllers and the speedlight, metering off the subjects face and simply using the exposure lock button.

Which brings me to the third and final point.

3. Time, Location & Light Available  

The last thing and really sometimes the least important part of a client's shoot. Variables you cannot control i.e. clients schedule, the amount of time you have to shoot, location and what time of day, these are technically out of your control and just what you have to adapt to.

This particular shoot the variables included. 

Time of shoot 12-1pm, shooting around the babies nap time ending, limited space/background options, budget not including rental of larger lighting source, 10-15 minutes total shoot time in-between food preparation and entertaining guests.

With these factors you have to improvise and use previous experience to get the shots you were hired for.

Here are some of those images.

Thanks for looking!

Be sure to let me know your thoughts and of course.

Thanks for looking, if you are in need of Photography,

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Pie & Beer Day! 2016 - With KRCL at Beer Bar

If you're a Utahan or in Utah, there is only one way to appropriately celebrate July 24th.

Playing on the words of "Pioneer Day", the people of Utah and especially in Salt Lake City have avidly adopted the celebration in the best way. Eating and drinking copious amounts of Pie & Beer.

This year marks the 3rd Annual formal festivities from radio station KRCL. Partnering with Beer Bar in Salt Lake City and inviting a plethora of local breweries and eatery entities to take part in this glorious summer fest.

Images included show some set up, the crowd growing, people getting dunked in the tank. Generally everyone having a good time, please take a gander and be sure to make it next year.

All photos (C) Lmsorenson Photography, special thanks to KRCL and all the participants.

(Courtesy :

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Thanks for looking, if you are in need of Photography, be sure to contact me atLOGAN@LMSORENSON.NET or at (801)455-9957

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A bit of Scottish Fun - Sheaf Tossing

Being a regular at the Annual Utah Scottish Festival, I haven't actually been neglectful in my patron-ship of recent years.

This year I headed straight to the Sheaf Toss competition and braved the off and on rains to have some fun, walk around a bit and capture some shots. Please enjoy this modest peek at the Scottish Festival in Utah.

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Salt Lake Comic Con Media Team Website - Featuring Yours Truly

An addition to the shown featuring it hard working, talented media team members....

My face has made it among the listed professionals who help capture the event for everyone.

Check the page out here. (HERE)


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Musician Vincent Draper - An album listening party.

A friend of mine and local musician Vincent Draper recently held a listening party with some new music...

Now sometimes I feel a little spread thin, having to be on the other side of town, but I am a strong advocate for local music, and supporting efforts for people making quality, creative content of their own style. 

So I stopped in, in support of a friend and great musician.

Here are some images from my time there and be sure to check out his music at.

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Tamron 24-70 f/2.8 VC - Review

I recently upgraded one of my lenses, I decided to pick up the Tamron 24-70... Here are my thoughts...

Pretty useful for indoor, event shooting. Used with Canon 6D. Used for stills not video. Upgrade from Canon 24-105.
Pretty useful for indoor, event shooting. Used with Canon 6D. Used for stills not video. Upgrade from Canon 24-105.
I have used this lens for a few shoots now and I figured I would start a review and share my experiences and then update as I go and find out more.
As most people who have purchased this lens as a choice for budget constraints / the reputation that this particular lens has. It seems generally considered sharp, the VC is very useful and at a price that is manageable. Below are my thoughts on why I chose, what I like so far, and what I have found that is either a challenge or something wish were different.

Overview / Why Purchase:

I bought this as an upgrade for my Canon 24-105 f/4 IS and it is quite an upgrade indeed and although I do miss that little extra reach, the higher shutter speeds and lower ISO I can use now is very well worth it.
I use this and my now sold (Canon 24-105 f4) lens for event and indoor concert photography, I didn't consider a prime as a replacement. Before purchasing this lens, I considered the following: (Canon 24-70 f/2.8 version 1, Canon 24-70 f/2.8 ii, Sigma 24-105 f/4, Sigma 24-70 f/2.8) but ultimately decided on the Tamron for a few reasons.

- Price: Immediately the Canon Mark ii lens was struck from my list because of the cost and with the Mark i and Sigma's were then the only options.

- Aperture: The 2.8 aperture was also something that I could use very well indoors in low light, I figured I had an f/4 (really a T stop of almost f/5) and that extra light allowed would be very welcome... Goodbye Sigma 24-105 f/4

- Stabilization: The f/4 I had had IS and I credit that function to the only reason I have had luck getting my shots. This was almost a must for me, and since the Sigma 24-70 does not have Sigma 'OS' annd the Canon version 1 did not have 'IS' and the Tamron does have 'VC' ... Good bye to the others I guess.

*The icing on the cake was that this Tamron lens has a weather seal gasket on the EF mount.

The Good / What I like in addition to the price and aperture...

- Build quality is very good. On par I would say with the Canon 24-70 ii as I have rented that lens many times for use and I was very pleased with the robust, solid construction and smooth rings, lens hood feels good, metal mount.

- Overall sharpness (I say overall because there are some issue I will explain in the bad). After processing, this lens can be incredibly sharp. The issues straight from a raw file are that at 24-35mm-ish... There is some vignetting and sometimes the corners being softer than the center, and correction, the addition of some sharpening, we're all good.

- VC (image stabilization) is very useful. I am not one to shoot fast moving subjects or live performances at slower shutter speeds. But if I am taking a video clip or photo of still life or in some situations getting an image of people enjoying themselves at an event if moving slowly enough, those situations image stabilization is very useful and allows for that lower ISO for a cleaner image.

The bad / What I wish were different:
- Zoom/Focus rings: Honestly the one thing I noticed first was that the focus ring is closer to the mount and the zoom ring further, as well as the direction in which the ring turns to zoom in and out. Being a direct opposite to the canon lenses I have been used to. It was very jarring the first few shoots, I found myself always reaching for the focus ring to zoom and or grabbing the zoom ring and turning it the wrong way. Having long arms, I have found that I have to change how I move when zooming with this lens as holding it as I am used to my elbows raise to the sides getting to 70mm and I may have almost hit other people when not looking.

- Focus speed: Now I use this lens primarily on a Canon 6D (that camera not being the fastest or slowest with its focus system). I have found that in comparison to various other lenses, primes & zooms, wide and tele photo, this lens Is not the fastest. I would put it between the 24-105 Canon and 24-70 Canon ii but with the margin way far behind the latter. *Note: I use mostly sing point auto focus with the AF drive set to single shot with the (DOF preview button set to AI Servo) when needed. I found that the initial focus with single shot a tad slower, with AI Servo initiated, the focus remains relatively fast.

- Vignetting / Slight softness: Always a give and take with sacrifices and such, lenses aren’t perfect. This is a great lens with some issues that bother me, one being at 24 mm there is some pretty thick vignetting and by 35-40 less but still visible vignetting. Now really I don’t mind a little. I almost expect it and sometimes it does add character to an image, but with a wide shot it is a bit much and requires correcting. The other half of that is that areas affected by that vignetting are usually a little softer than the center, especially at f/2.8.
End: Really this lens is great. For the price, the value you get, the performance that is there I would definitely recommend it. That being said… If you have the money I would still get the Canon 24-70 f/2.8 ii and if you are not in dire need of that 2.8 or you really need that extra zoom, I would also recommend looking at the Sigma 24-105 f/4 Art.

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Photoshoot at Adobe - Art Installations at Adobe Systems.

On assignment at Adobe Systems in Lehi UT, curator Andrew Ehninger takes interviewer Mariah Mellus and I on a tour of the facilities newest additions of on site art installations.

After taking us through security at Adobe Systems, we start by taking a stroll down the main floor corridor. In this wonderfully lit, open, inviting hallway, I am reminded that I can take photos of most everything, just not current displays, offices, or screens as we pass down the corridor.

Further along the hallways of Adobe we come upon some of the art work. Mainly hung along entryways in various open walkways, we receive information of the pieces themselves  as well as more about the process of picking the artists.

Using the site Behance. (, curator Andrew Ehninger takes submissions, multitudes reviewed per week.

Using QR coded name plates, artist information is easily accessible via a quick smart phone scan or Google search.


We take the elevator to the top floor of Adobe. Upon exiting, we view a permanent installation of a metal track, extending the height of the building, down the stairwell. 

Adobe employees and visitors can collect a ball pit style toy at the bottom on their way up, and opt to use this functional structure as a track for the ball to travel to the bottom.


Now, moving from the the main stairwell in Adobe,  discussing the mediums used, inspirations and the goal of this exhibition as well view more works floor after floor.

Providing more information on the artists as well as talking about his own pieces on the walls, Andrew Ehninger and Mariah Mellus discuss his personal creative process.

Andrew Ehninger poses for a photo next to his own piece in the stairwell of the Adobe Systems building.

We continue down the stairs and view floor after floor of work.

Ending the tour, Andrew and Mariah take to the upper floor of the common area/cafeteria.


A relaxing area including pool tables, free soda fountains, tables, cafeteria and even a small workout area. With another large installation opposite of this view that spans the length of the nearby stair bank.

As the interview of curator Andrew Ehninger comes to a close, I take a few more atmospheric images showing the scale of this main, windowed, naturally lit slice of architecture. 

The entire Adobe building is a great aesthetic and was a treat to get a look around, and the artwork that hangs within its walls provides a refreshing, creative atmosphere for the staff and visitors at the same time giving the artists some much appreciated exposure and sale opportunity.

To read the full piece from writer Mariah Mellus, check out or click the link below.


To see the art for yourself, see the Adobe/Behance page for info on their events, and below is an included map to their main building in Lehi, UT.


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'How to' - Selling (Photography Gear) Online

I have experienced a fair amount in selling small electronics and photography equipment online and have some tips on making a good sale and avoiding pitfalls...

Recently I sold a camera lens I had grown out of. This item sold within a few hours. Using this recent sale as an example, here are a few suggestions when listing your gear or accessories on sites like Craigslist, classified ad sites or trade based web forums.

1. Always include good photos!

This may seem like common sense but I cannot tell you how often I see an ad where: there are not enough pictures uploaded, the pictures they have uploaded are blurry and/or not exposed well, or worse there are none at all. There is no excuse for skipping this essential step, especially if you are a photographer, you should have equipment around to make good images.  

Below are the actual images from my recent listing and pointers for what to include in yours.

- Make your main image/main thumbnail a great single view of the item(s), filling the frame with a clean background (if there are parts, other accessories, include them).

- Show multiple angles in your images, such as left, right, top, and bottom get up close. In the case of a lens, I show the glass element, the cap, the hood, the focus ring and switches.

- DO NOT neglect to show any nicks and dings in your images! If you are selling something that is used, it is probably not going to look perfect, that is totally ok and you should be upfront about any sort of damage both cosmetic and mechanical. Not divulging these things can a make buyer back out of the sale.

- DO show the good condition. If you are selling something and you have taken good care of it you will want to accentuate that. A "like new" lens will sell much faster than "good" one and serious buyers will definitely be taking this into their decision to choose yours. *The buyer of my lens was particularly pleased with the images and condition, mentioning multiple times that this was a big part of choosing mine over others listed at similar and lower price.

2. Filling in your ad.

(Examples below for Craigslist).

1. Select whether you want to use your email (Craigslist will forward messages to you using CL relay) or select to not use email.

2. Select if you would prefer phone calls and or text messages then enter a good number to reach you. This is in addition to or instead of email.

3. The title of your ad is very important, you should have accurate, to the point text. Leaving further details for the body of the post. *Most things on Craigslist are sold as used, if you have a new item be sure to include that condition in your title.

4. Put an appropriate price! Most sites will require you to put price before you can publish your ad but I would not recommend entering "$1" to fill this box. Two reasons not to do this are: If you are listing a lens and your price is $300. Someone searching for that lenses enters their budget of 200-400, this buyer might never see your ad, because $1 listings have been excluded from their search! The other reason is that you may discourage serious buyers who know what they are looking for and what they want to spend. They will not want to haggle with you and compete with other buyers. Unless you are listing on eBay.

5. You should be direct and accurate with the body of your ad. Include any number of the following: where/when you purchased, your good experience(s), your issues if any and your reasons for selling. Be sure to include exactly what is included in the sale such as: any box, paperwork, accessories, specify if there is something missing from your original purchase and just as in the images, scratches, dents and damage should always be in your description.

6. If your item has a certain Manufacturer or Model number, you can enter it for more specific searches.

*Bonus, checking the "Include more ads" will show buyers your other active Craigslist ads.

3. Beware of scams!

So your ad is now online. When you start to receive messages from potential buyers, some of them are bound to be scam artists. Here are some things to look out for.

In the image below you can see an actual text message thread between myself and a scam artist.

1. Scam text messages will usually ask if you still have the item for sale, while also copy/pasting the title of the ad and having sentences in the wrong order in an oddly structured manner.

2. With a response of "Yes I still have this item for sale" from you, they might now ask you for your price even if you have listed your price already. A real buyer might word their question differently, such as "Can you go any lower on the price?" or "Would you accept $280?". 

3. Then if you respond with your price, this is the point where scam artist will tell you that they are willing to pay your price. They may claim to live locally but will ask you to ship to an address outside of your state or country, making an excuse that they are out of town, in the military or otherwise unable for anything local. They will always attempt to convince you to accept a cashier's check/money order or PayPal as payment.

With accepting a cashiers check/money order, they will mail you a fraudulent check that if you try to deposit you will find there will be a hold on your account for days wherein no funds will arrive, the scam being they hope you have shipped the item to them before realizing you have no new funds.

Secondly, PayPal is normally a secure way to transfer money and pay online but with this particular email scam the perpetrator will offer to transfer you money but instead, they only send you a fabricated email that is intended to look as if it is from PayPal and that you should ship the item immediately. Here are some things to look for.

*Below is an example, an actual email from a scam artist that I told (for purposes of this post) I would accept PayPal as payment. Once they had my email address, they sent me this fake message.

1. Notice that the sending email address is suspicious. Using "" to fool you into thinking this is in fact from PayPal. A legitimate email would end in ""

2. This obstructive graphic has been inserted into the header of the email, this is just an image that they have googled and included in this email, PayPal does not include more than their logo in emails notifying account holders of payments.

3. While a legitimate PayPal email may include a logo similar to this, it will not include the phrase "powered by" that is a trademark only used for marking devices or websites that accept PayPal as payment, not for communication to users.

4. PayPal will never address you as your email address, they will instead use your full name or company name as they have in their records. Remember you have not given this scam artist your full name, just your email address.

5. PayPal will not include the use of colored text or all capital letters. Note the odd sentence structure used in trying to convince you to ship immediately to receive payment. Payment funds should be made to you immediately after they are transferred. PayPal does not impose a time limit or payment restriction based upon on shipments or tracking numbers.

6. Attempting to impose a sense of urgency, they demand a tracking number in order for you to receive your funds. (*Again note the incorrect sentence structure).

7. Emails from scam artists will included links to "Click here" to check your account. DO NOT. This may lead to you to any site of their choosing resulting in possible spyware and or viruses being installed on your computer. Instead choose to check your account by opening a new browser and entering in

8. PayPal account holders (at least in the US) should receive emails from PayPal ending in the address of their California headquarters and not a foreign address.

9. Bonus! There are so many graphics and images! This is an overzealous attempt to convince you that this email is legitimate.


Below I have included what you might expect to receive from PayPal in the event of a successful payment being deposited to your PayPal account. (*Black marks for my client's privacy).

1. Note the sending address ending in "" with the full name of the buyer included.

2. The date and time of your email/transaction will be listed in this top corner.

3. The seller's PayPal username will be included in multiple places throughout this email.

4. Transaction ID listed will match the records when you log into your account.

5. The amount transferred will be shown here, matching the amount in your account.

6. This area will contain any notes added by the buyer, normally including something such as "For camera lens".

7. There will be a link to check your account however, I personally always prefer to manually enter rather than use a link in any email. This is a good practice for any site/service that might have your financial information in their records.

8. While it is true that it may take minutes for your funds to show, it will always be available regardless of any shipment confirmation. 

9. The buyer's full name and shipping address should be provided here. 

10. PayPal headquarters address will be included here, located in California, US.

11. Unique email ID will be included here, you can verify this in your account as well.

Phew! ...

That is a lot of information, if you have more questions I would suggest checking out PayPal's own page on how to spot a scam...


4. Actually Making the Sale.

So you have avoided scams and found a real buyer. How do you facilitate the actual sale?

After some back and forth with the buyer, you have negotiated a price that is reasonable for both parties. You now have to decide a few things, when to meet, where to meet, drop off, or pick up?

Here are a few pointers for transacting a smooth sale.

a. I will always ask either if they have a specific day and time they want to meet, if they are        not sure, I will provide them with a few days and times that I am available that week and go from there.

b. Personally, I prefer to meet in a public place rather than in private. Coffee shops are usually my go to place but I will sometimes offer to drop off something if they are ok with that and are close by. This has been a good option for people who work different hours and they can just take a quick break to make the transaction.

 c. When you have agreed on a date and time I would suggest being a few minutes early grab a table or stay in the parking lot and give a friendly text message that you are there. Also give a quick description of your car, your outfit etc. to easily pick you out if it gets crowded. 

d. Depending on what you are selling, the buyer may want to inspect, test and even ask a few follow up questions, this is totally normal. Once they are satisfied they should provide you with their payment, make sure to count it and then thank them for their time and be on your way.

*Some buyers will even have you sign a bill of sale once you meet and the sale is just about final. Depending on what is being sold, this protects them in case they were accused of theft. Not every transaction will need this, but it is not uncommon.


You're done! You made your sale and now have a good experience to recreate with your future sales.

I hope this has been helpful and thank you for reading!

Thank you for your time, if you liked this content, please share an be sure to find me on

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Bernie in the City - SLC Campaign Office Opening

Salt Lake City and "Utah for Bernie Sanders" now have a place to call home in all things operations...

Bernie Sanders, Senator from Vermont, running for president now has a location in Salt Lake City, Utah for the grassroots campaign for the US Presidency 2016.

Here are images from the opening including campaign staff, volunteers and locals that came out to show support.

Thank you for your time, if you liked this content, please share an be sure to find me on...

INSTAGRAM       |       TWITTER       |       FACEBOOK     |          FLICKR

If you are in need of photography work, please contact me at...