Zaure + Aziz, a Bridal Session

I had the pleasure of photographing Zaure + Aziz’s bridal photographs. The couple was married in Uzbekistan and wanted to document their wedding attire here, in a relaxed, outdoor setting as well.

Congratulations and best wishes to this beautiful, loving couple. I deeply appreciate them wanting me to document this amazing time in their lives.

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All images were processed with Actions from the JD Beautiful World Collection. The actions most used in this series were from Foundations, Earthy and Vivid Tints, and the Matte + Haze set.

Thank you for taking the time to view, share and comment. Consider following me on Facebook, Google +. and/or joining the JD Beautiful World Community.

G+ Cheat Sheet for Shortcuts, Hot Keys and Formatting

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If you liked this post, please follow and +1 me on G+: http://www.google.com/+JessicaDrossinPhotography

Free Nostalgia Texture for the JD Beautiful World Community on G+

Submit a textured photograph to the JD Beautiful World Community on G+ on FRIDAYS. The way you use the texture can be subtle or wildly experimental, just make sure it integrates a JD Texture. If you don’t have a JD texture to play with or are looking for a new one to add to your collection, you can try this one:

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AddingTextures

Please add the hash tags #TGITextured and the name of the JD Texture used. The purpose of the group is to learn different techniques and to find inspiration from other fine-art photographers. Photos from the group pool will be featured on my blog as well as on my Facebook page.
If you’d like to watch an in depth video tutorial of how to add textures, please go here.

Making Google+ Circles Work For You

Intro

What Are Circles?

Circles are very important on Google+, as they let you group people together depending on your relationship with them. Even better – they will never know what Circle you’ve added them to! This allows you to make good decisions about how you share non-public posts.
You can use the Circles already provided by Google+ OR you can edit them or add your own! This way, people belonging to a Circle will see only the posts shared specifically with that Circle (or set to “Public”), without seeing any posts shared with people belonging to other Circles. (So if you set up Family and Friend circles, you can show pictures of your crazy weekend with your Friends but Granny won’t see them). You can select Public, a specific circle or multiple circles. You can also share posts with Communities you belong to.
What makes Circles so great? Well in addition to sharing ONLY with the group or groups of your choice, you can also organize what you see in your FEED by the groups of your choice, allowing you to prioritize who you pay attention to and quickly find content you want to see.

The First Step: Adding People

Circles would be useless if you had no people to share your posts with, so first of all let’s add some (more) contacts to your existing circles:
1. Open Google+, hover with your mouse over the top left corner to see the Google+ main menu and select People.

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2. You can browse the Suggestions provided and hover your mouse over the Add button to add people to your Circles (they may be notified you’ve added them to your Circles, but will never know what Circle they belong to). Additional people may be found by hitting the Find coworkers and Find classmates options.

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If you’d like to network with other new G+ users, simply go to this link where we are creating a networking Circle: https://plus.google.com/106956101499956726757/posts/PinmndKFUsK

Please Consider Adding Me to Your Circles:

G+ Personal Profile: http://plus.google.ctom/+JessicaDrossin/
G+ Business Page: http://plus.google.com/+JessicaDrossinPhotography/

The Second Step: Organizing Your Circles

Now that you’ve added some more people to your circles, it’s time to organize them. While in the People menu, hit Your circles on top of the page:

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With a simple drag & drop, you’ll be able to add any contact to a specific Circle (they are listed below):

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By hovering your mouse over a circle, you will be given the chance to: edit its name, share it or even delete it!

Quick Tips

To Create a New Circle, simply hit the + button on the left of the circles!
To Remove a Person from a Circle, click on the circle to open it, hover with your mouse over the person you would like to remove and hit the X on the upper right corner – it’s that simple!

A Few Other Things You May Want To Know

The default for Circles is that they are public. If you’d like to change this, you can for both your Business and Personal profiles. Simply to to the “About” settings, then go to “People” and select Edit.

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Simply uncheck or change the permissions to change the privacy settings of your circles.

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G+ is an open network. That means, people can add you, even if you don’t add them back. Now this is fine, if you create posts geared for your Circles, so that you are only sharing publicly things that are viewable to anyone. However, let’s say there is someone you DON’T want to see your Personal or Business profile. The beauty of G+ is that you can mute or block any would-be trolls, noisy neighbors or underhanded competitors! From either your personal OR business account (or both) you simply type the profile or page name into the search bar.

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Now, when you see this person’s profile, there is a little arrow button. If you click it, a drop down menu will appear, allowing you to block or mute the person.

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Google+ has a great Help Section that covers many of the questions you may have about it. This is the support link that covers the Circles topic, for instance: https://support.google.com/plus/answer/1047805?hl=en

Google+ Tips & Tricks – Part 1

G+ Tips & Tricks

Make your text bold

To write bold text, simply put one * before and one * after it.

Example:

*This is my text* will become: This is my text

This tip only applies to posts and comments. It won’t work with the description you add to your photos when they are open in full size (right above their EXIF details)

 

Make your text italicized

To write text in italics, simply put one _ before and one _ after it.

Example:

_This is my text_ will become: This is my text

This tip only applies to posts and comments. It won’t work with the description you add to your photos when they are open in full size (right above their EXIF details)

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What’s the difference between +1s and Followers

Both the +1 and the Follow buttons are important for a G+ Business page, but not in the same way. The +1 Button helps you build your reputation on the internet, which means that, unlike the Facebook Like Button, the +1 Button is important also for search results and for all Google products, and tells how many people recommend your business to others.
The Follow button, instead, allows your fans and clients to keep in touch with you, as they will automatically add you to their circles by following you, and therefore be able to view your posts in the future.

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How about you follow and +1 me on G+? 😉 http://www.google.com/+JessicaDrossinPhotography

 

What are Hashtags and how to use them

A Hashtag can be any word or phrase preceded by the # symbol, without any spaces among words. It helps people find posts on a particular topic, as when you click on a Hashtag, G+ automatically shows you all posts hashtagged like so. Hashtags are a GREAT way to help people to discover your work on G+, so use them wisely. (Example: More people will search for hashtags saying #NewbornPhotography than #Ilovedphotographingthisbaby)
You can put Hashtags anywhere within the text of your posts; they may also appear at the top of your post as related Hashtags.

A Few Examples:

Just attended my first #SkyDiving lesson – amazing!
I’ve just tried Jessica Drossin’s #JDBeautifulWorld #EditingTools and love them! (this is the kind of post I always look forward to reading!)
My husband and I have just celebrated our #Anniversary in #Venice – so very romantic!
…and so on!

 

Using a +

To respond to someone or tag them in a comment (they will be notified, calling their attention to your post) you simply ad a “+” and begin typing the person’s name. A drop down menu will appear and you can select the person you wish to tag.

If you wan to reply, flag, or delete a comment, simply hover over the comment’s upper right side and a little menu will appear offering basic options.

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View Activity on a Post

To see the detail on who is liking and sharing your posts, simply click on the little profile icons to the lower right of your post. The post box will flip around and show user detail. By hovering your mouse over the profile’s name, you can add them to circles if you have not done so already.

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How to Create a Google+ Business Page and Make It Look Pretty

So, you want to create your Google+ Business page? Great! You are in the right place. Just follow the easy steps below to start experiencing the wonders of Google+ and become part of its constantly growing community.

 

1. The first thing you’ll need to create a Google+ Business Page is to have a Google+ Personal Profile (which should go under your name). It is not possible to setup a Google+ Business Page without having a Google+ Personal Profile.
If you already have a Google+ Personal Profile, you can skip directly to the second step of this guide.
If you don’t have one, simply visit this link: https://plus.google.com/up/start/ while NOT signed in to any GOOGLE SERVICES and sign in using your Google Account. Google will help you create your Personal Profile (you can add a profile picture, a cover image and all information now, or leave this for later). Don’t have a Google Account either? Simply select “Create an account” right below the big red Sign In button and you’ll be guided through the creation of a Google Account first, and a Google+ Personal Profile right after that.
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2. While logged in to your Google Account (I will be using my Jessica Drossin – Assistant account as an example), simply click the round avatar on top right of the page, and select the blue View profile button, as shown here below:

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3. Your G+ Personal Profile page will open. Now, on the left side of the page, you should see a button that reads Profile, like this one:

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What you need to do is simply hover on it with your mouse, so that the menu below appears:

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Just click the Pages button.

4. On the page that opens, select the Create a page blue button on the right:

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5. You will be asked to pick a category for your G+ Business Page. From what I’ve found out searching on-line, I can tell you it doesn’t make a big difference which category you pick, as this choice is mainly connected to layout purposes (and all layouts are the same for all categories, with the exception of one of them). The ONLY CATEGORY which gives you a different layout is the Local Business or Place one, which should be chosen if you are, for instance, a local photographer. The G+ Business Pages for Local Businesses are designed to make sure people can locate you using your physical address; this is why only for this category you will be first asked to enter your location and phone number. All of the other categories do not require this information, nor make any differences in terms of the layout of the G+ Business Page.

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6. Once you’ve chosen your category (and entered your physical address and phone number, in case you chose the Local Business or Place category), you can now choose your page name (it can be modified anytime), link your website if you have one (you will be later asked to verify it) and decide if your page can be seen by people of all ages (or not). Once you are done entering this information, you simply need to accept the Pages Terms and click Continue. Your page is up and running, and ready to be customized!

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Page Customization

Now that you’re done creating your Google+ Business Page, you need to fill in any information that may interest your followers and prospective customers: this includes describing your business, entering your e-mail address, choosing a page profile photo/logo as well as a custom cover.
Jessica Drossin Photography provides beautiful easy-to-customize cover templates that you can use for your G+ Business Pages.
You can download them here, right below the preview:

Sample

After you’re finished with the cover picture, you may want to add to the About page all of your external links, so that your G+ page points to your Facebook business page, your Twitter, Your Pinterest, Your Flickr…

Now, you’re almost ready to add a few posts and share the link of your page. The last thing to setup is… the link of your page!
You certainly don’t want to share a link that it’s full of numbers and impossible to remember, so what you need to do is create your unique URL. Just make sure to choose it carefully, as once you have created it, it can’t be changed anymore!

In order to claim your desired URL, you need to add the link to your website to the About section. After doing that, it’s also mandatory that you verify that link (so that Google can be sure the business activity you are claiming the URL for is really yours). The process varies if you have added the website to Google Webmaster Tools (or not). It’s all explained very clearly by a Google Help section at this link: https://support.google.com/plus/answer/1713826?hl=en&ref_topic=3293784.
Once you are done and a checkmark has appeared next to your website link, you should see a blue button on top of your page that suggests you start claiming your unique URL.
This is how the button looks like for a G+ Personal Profile – the wording is almost identical for G+ Business Pages:

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Please note that this blue button may take a few days to appear, even though the checkmark already appears next to your website link on your G+ Business Page.
Once it appears, it’s very easy to create your unique URL. Make sure you read the Terms of Service first!
This is what appears when you click on a G+ Personal Profile – what appears on a G+ Business Page is almost identical:

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Other information that may be useful to edit your G+ Business Page can be found at this link: https://support.google.com/plus/answer/1727176?hl=en.

Last but not least: HAVE FUN!!!

Please also add my G+ Business Page to your circles: https://plus.google.com/+JessicaDrossinPhotography/