the view from the new studio

Stephen Johnson Photography News, Events & Info December 2004

...Holiday Open House new date Dec. 17
Featured Print Offer
Workshop News
...New Workshop: Using Your Digital Camera
...Irish Workshop Pre-Announcement
HOPE Workshops
Upcoming Events
New Book Pre-order
Pacifica Land Trust Poster
The View from Here: Digital Image Ownership and Revenue
Please Visit Us
Newsletter Administration


Welcome to the December 2004 edition of the Stephen Johnson Photography Newsletter.

As always, we hope you enjoy this edition.


*Holiday Open House at Our New Studio
Holiday Open House and Gallery Opening Reception: Dec. 17 (changed from Dec. 10)

Please join us for a private reception at the new Stephen Johnson
Photography Gallery to celebrate the new space, a wider selection of images from Stephen's work in the National Parks and other landscapes.

Friday December 17, 2004. 6pm to 10pm

Music, Refreshments, Good Friends, Holiday Discounts
RSVP to Michelle at:

A public opening/Holiday Open House will follow on
Saturday December 18 from 12 to 5pm.

December 2004

Aspens in Snow
Mono Basin National Scenic Area, California. 1987.

11x14 Pigment Print on Rag paper

The first morning of my Mono Lake workshop in 1987 offered quite an autumn surprize, snow filling the basin and coating the golden aspens. We lost a few people to the snow closing Tioga Pass and keeping them from reaching the workshop, but the basin was remarkably beautiful.

We're offering an 11x14 inch print, matted to 16x20 and ready to frame for $195, framed for an additional $75. This print at this price is offered through December 31. We'll be taking orders until then, and shipping them out by January 15th.

About the Featured Print Program

Each month we offer a signed, original print, at a special price. This is a great opportunity to own a very affordable fine-art photograph. Orders are taken for a 30-day period, then printed and shipped within two weeks after the close. When it's over, it's over. These prints won't be available again at this price.


* Upcoming Workshops

How to Use Your Digital Camera
January 6, 2005, 7-10pm $45

A 3 hour seminar designed to help those with new digital cameras get up and running with digital camera basics and simple digital photography workflows.

* Fundamentals of Digital Photography
January 15-16, 2005
Stephen Johnson Photography Studios

* Death Valley in Winter
January 22-25, 2005 (currently full with waiting list)
with the Magical Digital Bus

* Death Valley in Winter - NEW Second Session
January 27-30, 2005
with the Magical Digital Bus

* Fine Art Digital Printing
Feb. 16-17, 2005
Stephen Johnson Photography Studios
Pacifica, California

* San Francisco Digitally
April 2005. Email for revised date arrangements:
Stephen Johnson Photography Studios

A two day digital photography workshop exploring some of San Francisco's most visually interesting areas. We'll spend time in the Presidio with its old forts and forests, downtown skyscraper cityscapes, the Palace of Fine Arts World's Fair remnants, Fort Point with its spectacular views of the Golden Gate Bridge, (and possibly the Marin Headlands) and the urban eden of Golden Gate Park. We will also take in the restored Cliff House and its historic Camera Obscura. Much time will be spent walking and looking, knowing we will be in the area for awhile, giving you the freedom to explore, but also keeping help nearby.

Our concentration will be on controlling your camera's operation to achieve your desired technical results, while building composition and visual skills to make the photograph what you want it to be.

The workshop will run from 9am to 5pm both days. You will be responsible for your own transportation, with parking areas and garages mapped. Lunch stops will also be pre-arranged but are not included in the fee. An optional Saturday night dinner at the wonderful Greens restaurant in Fort Mason will cap the first day.

Ireland’s Spectacular West Coast
June 25 – July 6, 2005
Cost: TBD
Seats limited to 12 students

Join Stephen Johnson and Anthony Hobbs for an unforgettable journey along the rustic West Coast of Ireland. This workshop will include hotel stays in several towns along our route from County Clare to Donegal. Along the way, participants will explore western Ireland's landscape with its lush greens, rocky islands and remote castles. 

If you are interested in joining the waiting list for this workshop, please email us at  We are limiting this workshop to 12 students. Photography instruction, transportation, lodging and some meals included. Airfare to and from Shannon will be participant's responsibility. Pricing and final itinerary will be announced in a subsequent newsletter.

* Check out our workshop web page for information on all of our workshops, including both our field and studio workshops.

with Stephen Johnson and the Magical Digital Bus

Hands On Photography Events are 5 day experiences, in beautiful settings, that are designed to give students the opportunity to work with Steve on a wide range of issues. We'll have plenty of time to work on everything from the technical and aesthetic challenges of composing and capturing meaningful images to overcoming the hurdles involved in producing great prints.

Where possible, The Magical Digital Bus provides us with the hands-on tools to work with our images, review our day's work, and produce fine-art prints. Temporary labs will be set up off-shore.

Workshop tuition includes a variety of equipment that participants get to keep, including a 200 gigabyte Maxtor hard drive, a Gretag Eye-One Display, and your choice of a high-end inkjet printer or Wacom Cintiq LCD Graphic Tablet. We'll provide catered food and bus service for the participants.

photo by Bruce Fraser

* Kauai Hawaii with Steve and Jay Maisel
February 6-12, 2005

* Yosemite in Winter
Feb 21-27, 2005

* Autumn in Yosemite
October 9-15, 2005
Email for information:

UPCOMING EVENTS with Stephen Johnson

The Digital Landscape
Palm Beach Workshop
March 14-18, 2005
Members: $995 • Non-members: $1045
Prerequisites: Imaging Overview or equivalent experience

Spend a week with digital photography pioneer Stephen Johnson exploring landscape and urban photography in the digital age. This workshop will blend field work, image processing, printing, and presentation into a week jam-packed with information and inspiration. Primary emphasis will be on empowering participants to get past technological hurdles and pursue their vision. Aesthetics and technology, workflow and results will be the goals for the week. Workshop time will roughly split 1/3 in the field, 2/3 in the digital lab.

Antarctica Workshop
November 30 — December 11, 2005

My friend Michael Reichmann of The Luminous Landscape has organized a Photography Workshop to Antarctica in December 2005. I will be teaching the workshop with Michael, my friends John Paul Caponigro, Jeff Schewe, Seth Resnick and Chris Sanderson. We will have the entire boat for our 10 day trek to the Antarctic Peninsula. The workshop filled with Michael's pre-announcement to his own list and so is listed here for information purposes or in case you want to be added to the waiting list.


Pre-order the winter publication of my fourth book "Stephen Johnson On Digital Photography" by McGraw Hill

Perspectives & Techniques from a Digital Photography Pioneer Exploring the Intersection of Art & Technology

This work traces the evolution of digital imaging from publishing to space exploration, explains the technology underlying the digital photo revolution, explores a personal history of involvement and influence, and uses the pages to suggest pathways through what Stephen considers the core of Photoshop for photographers in transition and rebirth into the digital realm. His personal insights, workflows and encouragement are central to this work, but the concentration on digital photography as photography and not computer science or trickery, makes this work pivotal. The sections on aesthetics, composition and ethics take stands and make concrete suggestions that are welcome in this age of anything goes and the assault on photographic truth.

Steve Johnson, one of the true visionaries of the digital photography era, offers us a technical tour de force and passionate artistic overview of the possibilities inherent in this new medium. On Digital Photography should be required reading for every aspiring photographic artist.

-Ted Orland, photographer & writer

"The hardest challenge to the digital author is to create a book that is not out of date by the time the ink is dry. Steve Johnson has broken through this barrier, creating the first book that address digital photography as a complete process, from digital's earliest beginnings, through today's technology knothole and ethical impact on our world. 12 on a scale of 10."

-Richard Newman, Education Coordinator, Calumet Photographic

To pre-order your signed copy, go to:


Great Blue Heron, San Pedro Creek Restoration Project

One day last March I saw this Great Blue Heron feeding in the mouth of San Pedro Creek, near the beach. In honor of the countless other waterfowl who now have their "watering-rights" restored, we've produced this handsome commemorative poster. It is available from us, or the Pacifica Land Trust.

The 18x24 inch full color poster is $20 (plus tax and shipping of $7.65, proceeds to benefit the Pacifica Land Trust and their continuing projects.

THE VIEW FROM HERE: Digital Image Ownership and Revenue

Copyright Automation

I would like to propose that companies with a vested interest in promoting digital imaging (those that are making income from the technology) help fund an Electronic Copyright Registration Service tied to the Library of Congress that could automate and streamline the copyright registration process for photographers.

This has been proposed many times, even implemented as test programs in different stages since 1997, but continues to be unavailable. Corporate funding and a new, well-designed effort might make a positive difference.

Such a feature could be built into an enabled computer with a web connection and an account that could be set up for identification and payment of registration fees. This might be able to be constructed so that government funding is not required for set up and so that it could be self-supporting once up and running.

A Secure Digital File Format

I would like to propose new secure file format that could be used for web, commerce and other distribution scenarios where file ownership is at risk. This format would require permissions for any action, and provide a clear path for ownership identity and allowed uses. It would like only be openable by software that respects its use restrictions. To enable some hacker security, the encoding itself would mutate and change with unique identity codes with variable encoding by artist preference.

Some of the features could include:
-provenance verification
-encryption keys
-copyright embedding
-electronic copyright registration
-no screen capture
-no save-as
-self-destruct timers after use period
-electronic commerce capbilties
-copy/print limiters

I am sincerely interested in my newsletter readers contributing ideas, feedback, encouragement and requirements for their image protection needs. email us at:

As always, to purchase original prints:

11x14 pigment on rag paper $450 from existing prints

Information on Stephen Johnson's Original Prints

With a New Eye: The Digital National Parks Project


Please come visit us at our gallery and see our original prints in person. The subtle detail of the prints and the beautiful texture of the fine art paper have to be seen to be understood. And while you're here, browse through our books, cards, posters, and specially priced prints.

We're happy to mail you a copy of our product catalog, just send a note to or call us at the number below.

We're located at:

Stephen Johnson Photography at the Sanchez Art Center
1220-C Linda Mar Boulevard, Creekside Suites, 5-7
Pacifica, CA 94044
(650) 355-7507

We're open by appointment. To find us, use our map online at:

Map to studio
Aerial View


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Last updated on December 7, 2004. Mail comments to:
Photographs and Text Copyright ©2004, Stephen Johnson. All Rights Reserved Worldwide.