Hi there everyone! Hope all is well! I've finally returned from FotoFusion
where my "Glamour on the Beach" seminar not only sold-out, but was over-sold! In fact, Robert Farber, who himself was speaking at Fotofusion, made a special appearance at the beach event, suprising all of us. My lecture, the day before, received the highest attendance for the day (3rd day of the event), the room was packed like Photo Plus 2005.
The biggest fun of Fotofusion was not only networking, but making new friends. The event, primarily sponsored by Canon and Leica, did showcase some Olympus and Lexar Elite photographers, including myself, John Isaac and Eli Reed. While I'll continue to use my Olympus cameras, I'll use my newest Leica R-9 analog/digital hybrid camera system too. Yes, I inked a deal with Leica that allows me to continue using my Olympus cameras too. The R-9 is the only 35mm digital SLR that shoots either film or digital, the change is in the back and done fast! So look for new images from both of my camera systems in next upcoming books, projects, etc.
If you're going to PMA
, I'll be there as I'll be writing the daily Pro's Perspective
column, first time ever in the PMA Daily.
If you've e-mailed or PM'd me recently, bear with me, I just returned from FotoFusion in Florida, and tomorrow I fly out to Portland for work on books and my one-day Special Workshop
featuring five models, including two Playboy models and a soon to be published Playmate for 2006. I put in a day to give back, the rest of the time I'll be shooting on my books, my first book is already at the press, look for it soon! I'll stay till Feb. 2, as I photograph the Portland/Spurs game in Portland the night of Feb. 1st. I'll also be on business in Los Angeles, Feb. 5-9. Then off to do a workshop in Atlanta at Playboy Producer, Cynthia Kaye's studio Feb. 18 & 19th. So please bear with me as we're totally doing an overhaul on GG right now!
On Garage Glamour, well get ready--the first order of business is we'll be reducing to "free status" all the Premium Photographer
members who have not renewed or signed up for Lifetime status.
This is the way it will work:
1. We'll soon announce a URL where you can "renew" your Premium status or upgrade to Diamond or Lifetime status.
Lifetime status is the only available option for now where you don't have to wait on that Special URL, but when we make the special URL announcement for renewals of Premium members, the prices will go up
as our make-over of the GG site will now allow a bunch more new benefits for Lifetime members. So you can pay $99 now or up to $159 later, your choice. Pay now, never pay again, ever!
2. Our forum software will no longer be supported with future upgrades, patches, security fixes, etc., not our choice
, the software company's choice. That has caused me to seek out alternatives--this is a mandatory decision. We are working on a new version, much better, faster, but similar in appearance to what we have. It will use threads and flat, or both. Look for it soon and we'll give you a chance to try it out. You'll also be able to hoover your mouse over a post, without opening the post, and see the first few lines of the post!
3. Our portfolio system, will change--period--for the better. It will still integrate with the forum, but allow categories, send-card (think email of promo and comp cards) and more. I recommend you save all your portfolio images in a folder on your computer, just in case, we lose some data in the migration of the new system. If we do, you'll have to reload your images. Don't worry about the thumbnails, they are automatically generated, save only the larger photo. This is just a precaution. The new system will allow more images to upload too, depends on the membership type, of course, Lifetime members will get more.
Because of the big push for the latest anti-porn efforts, and to be in proper compliance, we will do like most sites have done already, all nude images are only veiwable by registered members, this adds another layer of keeping minors away from nude images.
3. The chat room. The chat room will change, it's awesome and runs better. When you login to the new forum system when the time comes, you will see the chat login button on the navigation bar.
4. Our navigation system--it sucks. I designed it, I'm to blame. We're moving to a better product already in use by Delta Airlines, Fedex, Best Buy and other top sites, that will not be image based as it is now.
5. Our front page--It will be a better content management system. New things to come.
6. Calendar--the new calendar will be part of the forum system, it rocks!
7. Links system--the new link system is part of the new forum system.
8. The contest, we will have a model's and photographer's contest, better system than before, it's coming, for now, until the new make-over launches, the monthly contest is OFF. When we resume, we'll make-up the month we've lost with more than one winner.
9. The PM system. The new system is based on your membership. The more you increase/upgrade your level, the more you get. Lifetime members will rock here! Plus you can PM more than one person at time on the same subject.
10. Posts, Lifetime members will have more flexibility with their posts. They will be able to start Polls and can delete or edit their posts.
11. Lifetime members, will get a first look at the new site, and the changes, soon--only Lifetime members. Their feedback will be taken, then we'll go live with the new version of GG. GG will be a new community, highly-polished.
Like when we changed the forum in 2002, some folks didn't like it, so I'm sure we'll have some naysayer's in this overhaul of GG. My apologies in advance, as we aim to please but know not all will be happy with the changes. We do know one thing, you'll get more, more images, better portfolio system, better forum system, better chat system and even bigger and better servers--soon to be super fast! We also know we have to change with the times, protect our site from minors, and move forward. We'll be adding as we go, from travel notifications to new model/photographer notifications in your area, to some super cool stuff. Even multimedia is coming.
For now, I'd highly recommend you upgrade to Lifetime status, link is above. Soon we'll provide a link for those that just want to renew to Premium, though I highly recommend lifetime status as the way to go.
I close by saying one thing, I launched and founded Garage Glamour in March 1999, it's been a long haul, this will be the best make-over yet, and I'm excited as I'm already working behind the scenes, barely getting any sleep, as we make the changes. I will ask a few long-time faithfull users of GG to beta test it at first, then the Lifetime members will have second stance.
Thanks, wishing everyone the best, rg sends!