We’re Not Gonna TAKE It!

We’re Not Gonna TAKE  It!

I’d be rich if I had a nickel every time someone asked, “Could you TAKE my picture?” The reason TAKE is in bold is because I take exception to that word with regards to photography. I much prefer the word MAKE vs. take. A photo is the final product. It’s much more accurate and appropriate to make a work of art as opposed to take a work of art. For instance, a sculptor doesn’t “take” a statue, he “makes” it. A designer doesn’t take a blueprint, he makes it. An oil painter doesn’t take a framed masterpiece, he makes it. So why is the word TAKE relegated to a photographer? To make a photograph implies it’s creative, deserves greater status, and it’s an art piece.

A photograph should be made. A composition gets thought out, therefore, the photo is made. Before the photographer presses the shutter, he or she needs to evaluate the arrangement of elements seen through the viewfinder. Is it chaotic? Are the elements orderly? If it’s chaotic, what can the photographer do to make the composition simpler? You make this happen and change the position from where you currently stand, not take this happen. To make this happen, get to a higher point, squat down to eliminate background distractions or move the subject to a different location. Do more than raise the camera to your eye and press the shutter. Think about where the subject should be placed to make the most dynamic composition.

We’re Not Gonna TAKE  It!

A photograph should be made. Thought should go into the lighting. The best light occurs at sunrise and sunset when the warm colored sun is low in the sky. It provides modeling, texture and intrigue to the subject. It may even need to be augmented using a flash. So be it. Make the picture, don’t simply take what’s given. If it’s noon, use a diffuser when you work with a small subject to soften the light—make the photo. Don’t just take it and accept the light for what it is. Photograph subjects in the shade. Use the shaded side of a building to provide soft light. Avoid bright highlights and deep shadows that cause unacceptable contrast ratios. Return at a different time of day—so be it. Make it happen!

A photograph should be made. Research the subjects you photograph. Some photographers go with the flow and take what they’re given. I’m a photographer who wants to return from a session maximizing my potential. I prefer to make it happen. If my travels bring me to an unfamiliar area, I research the best locations, the best time of day to be at each spot, the restrictions I may encounter, and other important details. Upon arrival, I apply the rules of good composition and light to make my images. Apply the same concepts to local outings. For instance, when does the light best strike the tallest buildings, when do the ducks that live on the local ponds give birth, what festivals are going on where I may get some great character images, or when does the biggest proliferation of wildflowers bloom? Learn, know and research the important details to make it happen.

We’re Not Gonna TAKE  It!

From now on, no longer go out and take pictures. Go into the field and make them. Think before you press the shutter. Do more than simply raise the camera to your eye and “click.” Process what can be done to make the scene in the viewfinder before you make the exposure. Go beyond the basics to bring your picture making to the next level.

Visit www.russburdenphotography.com for information about his nature photography tours and safari to Tanzania.

The post We’re Not Gonna TAKE It! appeared first on Outdoor Photographer.

LG plans to tackle the Note 8 with Australian V30 Plus release

While the regular LG V30 ended up passing us by Down Under, the LG V30 Plus, a much better version of the same phone, has now been confirmed for an Australian release in early November 2017.

Among the various improvements that LG V30 Plus can boast over the regular version are the inclusion of Quad DAC audio features and QuadPlay earbuds, as well as a larger storage capacity of 128GB, twice that of the 64GB capacity that came with the V30. 

It's got a 6-inch, 2:1 HDR/Dolby Vision-ready display, a Snapdragon 835 processor, 4GB of RAM, a 3,300mAh fast-charging battery and is IP68-certified against water and dust. It's also got a dual camera (13MP + 16MP) setup on its rear and a 5MP snapper on the front. 

Set for release early next month, the LG V30 Plus will be available from JB Hi-Fi for $1,199, putting the price of LG's premium flagship handset well below its flagship rivals, the Samsung Galaxy Note 8 ($1,499) and the Google Pixel 2 XL ($1,549) in Australia. 

  • Best phones in Australia 2017: the 10 top smartphones we've tested

Synology debuts VM-ready NAS solutions at GITEX

At GITEX Technology Week, popular NAS provider Synology unveiled two new NAS systems designed to provide robust storage and backup services, as well as function as an all-inclusive virtualization solution.

The Synology RackStation RS18017xs+ offers scalability of up to 180 drives, and is powered by an Intel Xeon D-15316 CPU and up to 128GB of DDR4 ECC RDIMM memory.

The system features robust snapshot replication as well as regular backup cycles through Synology’s own Hyper Backup software that bundles with the system. It also now integrates the Btrfs file system for enhanced security and reliability for mission-critical applications and storage.

New with the RS18017xs+ is the strong focus on virtualization. The system supports products from popular virtualization vendors such as VMware, Hyper-V, and Citrix to effectively run virtual machines from the system directly.

Synology FlashStation FS3017

Also unveiled at the show was the Synology FlashStation FS3017. This remarkable solution uses all-flash storage (as the name implies), making it perfect for environments that require ultra high performance and low latency.

The FS3017 is compatible with major SAS/SATA SSD brands, and can support up to 72 drives when coupled with a compatible Synology expansion unit. As with the RS18017xs+, the FS3017 is virtualization-ready, and offers the same reliability and failover solutions seen in Synology’s existing lineup of products.

Cyber Monday 2017: everything you need to know about this year’s UK deals

This year's Cyber Monday is certainly not to be missed for anyone who likes a tech bargain – which we assume is all of you. It's the traditional end of the biggest shopping weekend of the year, kicked off by the US Thanksgiving holiday and Black Friday, and leading through a weekend where crowds of keen shoppers hit the high street in the hunt for bargains.

The term "Cyber Monday" was coined more than a decade ago to encourage people to do more shopping online – web retailers offered more discounts, shoppers picked up more stuff, and the cycle has continued to get where we are today.

Last year was another record-breaker, according to the stats: the $3.45 billion that users spent online on Cyber Monday 2016 made it the biggest day in US ecommerce history, according to Adobe Digital Insights.

In the UK a quarter of all consumers were planning to pick up a discounted deal on Black Friday and Cyber Monday last year, and that strong interest shows no signs of abating just yet. Brace yourself for another busy day of online shopping this year.

When is Cyber Monday 2017?

First there's Thanksgiving on the Thursday, then there's Black Friday on the Friday, and then there's Cyber Monday. Cyber Monday 2017 will be on November 27.

Unlike Black Friday, where the focus is traditionally on high street stores as well as online retailers, Cyber Monday is more about shopping on the web. In fact the marketing term was first dreamt up as a way to get people to buy more of their stuff online, at a time when web shopping wasn't as familiar and as straightforward as it is now.

The whole weekend is seen as the last few days of major discounts before the run up to Christmas, and so people are often tempted to splurge the cash on gifts for themselves or friends and family – the total spending from last year was reportedly close to £6 billion in the UK (over both Cyber Monday and Black Friday).

Cyber Monday has become Cyber Monday because of good timing: shoppers are either clicking away back at work after a Thanksgiving break, or surfing the web during an extended holiday off the back of the weekend.

For the purposes of working out when Cyber Monday is scheduled to happen, remember that Thanksgiving always falls on the fourth Thursday in November in the States, and Cyber Monday then marks the end of that weekend. While the holiday isn't as widely celebrated over here in the UK, the same big shopping days now apply on both sides of the Atlantic.

Why Cyber Monday matters

Cyber Monday is a win-win for shoppers and retailers alike, driving a strong uptick in sales as the holiday shopping season starts, and giving all of us some very tempting offers at the same time. It's really no surprise that Cyber Monday continues to grow in scale every year.

And in the opinion of Dom Joseph, CEO of ad tech firm Captify: "What works very much in Cyber Monday's favour is that it is the last significant retail 'day' before Christmas, in which people have the opportunity to pick up a heavily discounted bargain."

Black Friday is an important influence as well as well, because without Black Friday there's no Cyber Monday. If you've missed out on the weekend sales or not had time to get online, then you've still got Cyber Monday to fall back on, with shoppers taking up the last opportunity to land a deal before December starts.

Cyber Monday just keeps getting bigger and bigger – or at least that's how it feels – and so many consumers now deliberately wait for the day (and Black Friday) to come around, saving their cash beforehand. That makes the battle between retailers even more competitive, which in turn should give us some very appealing deals to pick from.

Shopping on Cyber Monday 2017

All the usual benefits of online shopping apply to shopping on Cyber Monday 2017: you can do it from the comfort of your own home, you can compare dozens of products and prices in seconds, and you can purchase your goods almost instantly.

There's only one small downside, which is you might not get your gadgets immediately, but even so, with delivery times getting faster and faster and the risk of wasting your time queueing on the high street, many people would consider that a trade-off that's well worth it.

While a few Cyber Monday deals have some kind of time restriction on them, a lot are going to be running all day, stats from previous years show. You don't necessarily have to sneak out of the office to get your order in.

According to the experts, Cyber Monday also sees a broader range of deals across each individual retailer, so it's less about one-off discounts and more about lower prices across the board. That said, some stores will follow-up Black Friday discounts with further reductions on Cyber Monday if they still need to shift some stock.

The best Cyber Monday deals from last year

For the last few years we've been scouring the web on your behalf for the best Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals, helping you nab the best tech at the best prices. These were some of the highlights from Cyber Monday 2016.

Sony PS4 Pro

The PS4 Pro had only just arrived on the scene last year but retailers were still happy to knock a serious chunk of change off it – Amazon was knocking $60 off the console in the US, for example, one of several deals around.

Xbox One S

Sony's console wasn't the only one that online stores were happy to flog for a discount, because the Xbox One S featured in many a deal too: on Amazon you could pick up an Xbox One S and two games for less than £200.

Dell discounts

Dell was definitely getting into the spirit of Cyber Monday 2016, knocking a significant 12% off all of its laptops and computers (including one of our favorites) with the code SAVE12. Look for more of the same this year.

Gaming laptops

Speaking of laptop deals, Cyber Monday shoppers could get a bumper £200 knocked off the cost of the ASUS GL552VW 15.6 inch Gaming Laptop, down from £999.99 to just £799.99 during the course of the day.

iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus

Retailers weren't leaving Apple products out of their Cyber Monday 2017 discounts – certain models were being knocked down on contracts so there was no up front cost to pay, just the monthly contract price.

What to expect from Cyber Monday 2017

With each passing year, online retailers get savvier when it comes to planning their Black Friday and Cyber Monday campaigns, but shoppers are getting more discerning too – as we've said, it's already a win-win deal for both sides, but both sides are still continuing to try and get the best deals possible.

You can expect deals to be in place well before November as retailers and manufacturers get their ducks in a row, but they won't go live until the actual day of Cyber Monday. That said, some deals will carry over from Black Friday, and some might go live on Sunday, so it's a question of checking in as often as you can for discounts.

In recent years we've seen a pattern of sales and discounts continuing across the whole of December, so you can think of Cyber Monday as a starting gun for the Christmas sales – you don't necessarily have to panic if you miss out on Cyber Monday itself.

Sales were up 12.1% on Cyber Monday 2016 compared with the year before, IBM analysts say, and we're expecting another strong day of business in 2017. One trend to look for is more people buying from smartphones than on the desktop, making snapping up the bargains even more convenient.

Predicting the best Cyber Monday deals of 2017

Games consoles

Consoles are always primed for discounts come Black Friday and Cyber Monday, and 2017 should be no different. We're expecting to see some deals done on the PS4 Slim, the PS4 Pro, and maybe even Microsoft's Project Scorpio – if it's out in time. Whether or not the new Xbox is around for Cyber Monday 2017, the old ones could well be discounted too.


TV tech continues to advance rapidly, with 4K and HDR now becoming the norm – given that pace, and the fact that expensive new models get out of date quickly, Cyber Monday 2017 could be the perfect time for you to pick up some hefty discounts on a brand new flat screen for your living room. A number of stores will probably be running TV deals.

iPhone 8

It sounds like Apple is planning something very special indeed for the iPhone 8, and given that Apple products are always popular on Cyber Monday, we'd expect to see some decent offers for Cyber Monday 2017. Look for network operators reducing the up-front cost of Apple's new handset, and Apple itself dishing out gift cards and special offers for the day.

Samsung Galaxy S8

If you're not taken with Apple's line in smartphone handsets then you can always look out for a deal on the Samsung Galaxy S8 or the Samsung Galaxy S8 Plus. Again, the simple reasoning is that these are very popular products, and very expensive products, so any knock-down is going to have people rushing for the buy button on Cyber Monday 2017.

DSLR cameras

DSLR cameras are similar to big screen TVs in some ways – expensive bits of kit that people don't necessarily rush to replace very often. With a slew of new models already out this year and due to arrive before the end of 2017, Cyber Monday could be the perfect opportunity to save a few pounds or a few hundred pounds on that camera you want.

Cyber Monday 2017 FAQ: what it is, when it happens and where to get the best deals

What is Cyber Monday?

Cyber Monday is the first Monday after the Thanksgiving Thursday, marking the end of four straight days of eye-catching deals and the start of the holiday shopping season.

When is Cyber Monday 2017?

Cyber Monday 2017 will be Monday, November 27 this year, so get your credit and debit cards primed for the occasion.

So what's Black Friday 2017?

Black Friday is the Friday before Cyber Monday, just after Thanksgiving. The two days bookmark the weekend and are often pretty similar in terms of discounts.

Are Cyber Monday deals genuine?

Most of the time, yes, though keep your wits about you and make sure you're checking a reputable guide (such as this one) for some tips. Many deals have been planned and agreed in advance, though you will sometimes get stores announcing spontaneous discounts in response to market demand.

Where can I find the best Cyber Monday deals?

Here on TechRadar we'll be doing our very best to pick out the cream of the Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals for you, so you don’t have to refer to any other guide – stick with us and we'll bring you all the hits and some of the misses from the store sales.

How do I get the best Cyber Monday 2017 deals?

Try not to get too carried away with the thrill of bargain hunting and work out how much you have to spend in advance. Also, do your research online to find out how much goods were selling for before Cyber Monday – sometimes those discounts aren't quite as huge as they might appear.

There's nothing wrong with being spontaneous, as long as you can afford it, but the more planning you put in the better – then you can tell which sales are worth going for and which aren't (watch out for outdated tech that the stores are trying to shift. Finally, keep this page bookmarked for the weekend.

Can I get cashback on Cyber Monday deals?

Sometimes, yes. Your debit card or credit card may offer cashback on purchases, and sites such as Quidco often offer cashback for new customers of big-name online shops. It’s definitely worth looking into, not just for Black Friday but for any online shopping.

Am I protected when I buy on Cyber Monday?

Yes, as with any other day. In the UK, purchases made from a company online are covered by a wealth of consumer protection legislation, including the Consumer Contracts Regulations, which cover areas like delivery and returning faulty goods.

How can I stay safe on Cyber Monday?

Wherever there's a crowd, the scammers gather too, so stay safe out there. Make sure you're doing your browsing through a modern, updated browser on a modern, updated operating system with your security tools carefully configured, and avoid any sketchy-looking emails (or indeed Facebook posts) promising Cyber Monday deals that are too good to be true or lead to sites you've never heard of.