Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Another Fisheye Image

These images were taken at a recent wedding with the Nikon 10.5mm f 2.8 DX fisheye lens. The top image is the "non-corrected" version and the bottom image is the "rectilinearly-corrected" version.

Which do you like better? Click on each image to see a larger version.

The angle of view on with the 10.5mm DX lens is 180 degrees! Talk about wide!

"Where Is Your Camera?"

I’m often asked this question.

It seems just because I am a professional photographer, everyone thinks my camera should be with me everywhere I go. Now for some photographers that’s probably the case. But not me.

Why? Because I’m a WEDDING photographer! I’ve never been shopping and found a need to quickly take photographs of people who might be getting married in the produce aisle of my local grocery store! :)

But there are times you WILL see me with a camera. I have it with me at all of my daughter’s school events. I have it with me at most family gatherings as well. I usually have it with me at any special event my church is sponsoring. You get the idea. I use my camera just like you probably use your camera. (BTW, I could have said, "You get the picture," but that was too easy...)

I usually bring with me the same cameras that I use for weddings, but I do have a point and shoot digital camera besides my huge SLR cameras. I have a Fuji F10 which seems to be the Point & Shoot camera of choice for many professional photographers. Why? Because you can take very low light photos with it without using your flash. For the technically minded, it will easily shoot at ISO 800 and with just a little more noise at ISO 1600. And, it has a very low shutter lag (the time it takes to shoot a picture when you depress the shutter release button.) It’s got a large 2.5 inch LCD screen to use to frame your shots and review the ones you’ve just taken. Plus, it does great looking videos too. It’s very impressive for a P&S camera for under $300. A new version, the F11 will be out soon. It will add more manual controls to the camera, but will probably sell for around $400 initially (just my guess).

Actually, the Fuji F10 is my wife’s camera since I bought it for her. But guess who uses it most? Funny how that works out, huh? :)

Monday, November 28, 2005

Value... Can't Put A Price On It

"Wow... you're expensive!"

I've never heard that said to my face when meeting with potential clients. But I wonder how many are thinking that or saying that after I'm no longer in earshot. :)

Admittedly, I'm not the cheapest photographer out there. But for some reason, I do have a lot of clients. There's got to be a reason, right?

I've asked many of my past clients why they hired me. Many said "Great Value." Others said "Personality."

Great Value? AT MY PRICES?? :)

Apparently, after checking other photographers out, extrapolating the cost of all services offered, products given, and estimating future products needed, I actually came out cheaper than a lot of other photographers! I've heard this from many of my past clients.

What was reported back to me is that many photographers try to re-gain their lower initial cost by charging a lot for things on the back-end. Reprint prices are the number one thing mentioned. At $30-$80 per 8x10 print, it started to add up. Even the lowly 4x6 reprints were running in the $6-$12 range per print. Outrageous! Many of my clients who have their digital files given to them after the wedding get their reprints for as low as $0.16, not $6-$12 !!

When calculating the final cost of prints, albums, initial service prices, lower time spent at the wedding (some photographers offer 4 or 5 hour packages to "cover" a wedding) , I came out with the best value. And, they mentioned that I have a fast turn-around time to get prints back to the client (often around a month or so). Some others take several months to finish the work.

Here is a list of some things I offer to clients:

1. Choice of 250 prints or prints of "all"images shot at the wedding
2. Full wedding day coverage (often 8-10 hours or more at times...)
3. Low on-line reprint prices
4. Even lower reprint prices for the client for use in their albums
5. Option to receive all digital files in color and B&W so they can print their own images to save money
6. Album choices - also, not required
7. Experience since 1990
8. Constant contact with clients throughout the year via email, phone and Blog Site
9. Flexibility in handling requests in retouching images (if it's easy to do, I often don't charge extra for simple and reasonable requests.)
10. A pleasant deameanor - comes with the territory :)

Put that all together and I suppose THAT is the value my clients see in me and my services.

What's THAT worth to you?

Where Are The Harps?

It's been a while since I've been to a wedding that had harp music playing! I really miss it!

Now it's quite common to have violins, cellos, guitars, piano, organ, flute... but have you ever considered hiring a harpist for your wedding?

I recall being at a wedding in San Diego in which a harpist was hired to play music as guests were arriving. It was just beautiful. I could hear the guests all commenting how unusual it was and how much they enjoyed the music. It's definitely not a common thing to see or hear. The harp is so mellow... it really sets a wonderful mood.

You may be thinking that harps might not be loud enough for a large church. But today, harps can be amplified! I remember checking out some music equipment at a local Guitar Center music store and going into the sound reinforcement showroom. To my surprise, there was a harpist auditioning the latest PA system! I had been to many music stores in the past but never had I seen a harp at one of these stores! The sound of that harp through the latest Mackie speaker system was just amazing! It even got the attention of several of the local "heavy metal" musicians in the store. They just stopped looking at equipment and came in to just listen to her play! They were all very impressed. Now THAT is a major compliment, I'd say! If you can get compliments from these guys, you KNOW you are good! :)

So if you want something unique to set a mellow mood at your wedding, consider hiring a harpist! Just do a search for Harp+Chicago and you'll be sure to find some sites!

Thursday, November 24, 2005

Happy Thanksgiving

Wishing you all a very Happy Thanksgiving!


Wednesday, November 23, 2005

New Cameras for 2006 Weddings! Techno-babble to follow...

I have sold both of my Nikon D100 cameras (they went VERY fast... one in a about one hour and the other in less than 2 days) so next year all weddings will be shot with new cameras!

Two Nikon D200 cameras will be the replacements and the current Fuji S3 Pro will remain in service. It's going to be an awesome combination. I was a little sad to see the two D100's go as they had shot so many weddings and events over the past couple of years. But in digital, advancements in technology have made it necessary to have a constant upgrade policy for professional photographers who shoot digital.

The new D200's will increase speed in shooting as well as give the opportunity for a "cleaner" file. You'll be able to enlarge your photos without fear of pixelization and noise. Low-light capabilities of the new D200 is also vastly improved.

Nikon expects the D200 to be available in limited quantity by the end of December. As a Nikon Professional Services (NPS) member, Nikon has assured me that I will be among the first to receive one of these cameras. NPS membership is open only to full-time professional photographers. I'll take a few months to familarize myself with all the new functions before shooting the first wedding of the new 2006 season. And by the time of the first wedding, a second D200 will of course be purchased as well.

The photo below shows the D200 with the optional MB-D200 vertical grip / extra battery holder. Both of my cameras will be outfitted with this option (I had a similar setup with the older D100 / MB-D100 combo.)

Nikon pros have been waiting about 3 years for Nikon to introduce a camera worthy to replace the D100. Even with the newer "consumer" oriented D70, D70s and D50 cameras, many pros opted to keep shooting with the D100. Why? Better build quality, more reliability and the vertical grip option (not available from Nikon for the D70 and D50.) Eventually, third party vendors offered a solution for the vertical grip for the D70 and D70s cameras. Not as perfect as the Nikon version for the D100, but it works.

Why not shoot with the big Nikon D2x cameras? Well, for starters, they are just too heavy for wedding photographers to use! Every ounce adds up when you carry three cameras and professional lenses all day long at a wedding. The D200 is lighter, but is still built with a magnesium inner frame for strength. In addition, the file size of the D2x is huge, which means a longer time for post production Photoshop work. This added time to work with hundreds of files means a higher cost for weddings. The most logical and economical choice for weddings is obviously the D200 for those who use Nikon gear for weddings.

The excellent Fuji S3 Pro camera will remain for 2006 weddings. To date, this camera offers the best dynamic range of any digital camera on the market. Designed almost perfectly for wedding and portrait photographers, the S3 Pro creates images that are very hard to beat. Often said to have a "film-like" quality to its images, the S3 Pro has awesome color capabilites and the ability to produce very nice images even in very low light. So dark churches really create no problems for the S3 Pro. And very bright outdoor weddings will greatly benefit from the S3 Pro.

Another nice thing about the Fuji S3 Pro is that it uses all the lenses that fit Nikon cameras! Nikon's glass has a long-standing reputation for excellence and Fuji was very smart to use it. Actually, Nikon manufactures the S3 Pro camera for Fuji, so the qualilty of Nikon really runs just as deep in the Fuji professional cameras! The S3 Pro is based on a Nikon designed body that was essentially redesigned by Fuji engineers. The image sensor inside the S3 Pro is 100% Fuji and only available in Fuji cameras. It is this sensor that has gotten all the acclaim for having wide dynamic range which is a quality often attributed to film-based camera systems. This is why many have said the S3 Pro has the most film-like quality to its images.

The combination of the two D100 cameras and S3 Pro camera worked very well for me. The new D200 cameras with the S3 Pro will be just awesome for 2006! I can't wait for the new season to start so I can play with my new toys!

Monday, November 21, 2005

Fisheye Lenses

Fisheye lenses get their name from their ability to see an extremely wide angle of view (like the eye of a fish.)

The top image is a typical fisheye view. The lens used was a Nikon 10.5mm f2.8 DX which offers a 180 degree angle of view from side to side. The fisheye lens will make objects appear slightly unnatural due to its extremely wide view and often straight lines will look curved (see the intersection of the walls and the ceiling.)

But with Nikon's Capture software, the images can be rectilinearly corrected so that the image appears more normal (see the bottom picture.) This will lose some of the extreme wideness of view, but it's still much wider than your average wide angle lens.

Fisheye lenses are great for taking images of an entire room. There's nothing quite like a fisheye lens.

Thursday, November 17, 2005


There are many ways to photograph rings. A very classic way is shown here.

The rings are placed inside the bride's bouquet and then photographed with a "Macro" lens (Nikon calls it a "Micro" lens). The selective focus in this particular shot is right on the diamond engagement ring. Because of the shallow depth of field (DOF) view, the wedding bands are slightly "soft" in focus.

An alternative to this method of shooting rings is to allow the groom to simply "hold" the rings in his hand. This is a lot faster way to shoot and it can be done without a macro lens as well. It's a little more informal, but it works.

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

"I'm Having A Friend Shoot My Wedding"

I know that many potential clients are now reading my blog. So, this post is for them...

I was just reading a thread on one of the on-line wedding forums I frequent about the fact that many brides will try to save some money by having a "friend" shoot their weddings. This is a growing trend today because so many people are buying digital cameras and thinking they can offer professional services to their friends.

Here are my thoughts on this: Intentions might be good, but execution might be lacking.

Having a new camera doesn't automatically make a person a good photographer. Anyone can go out and buy a camera but that doesn't mean they know how to take a good photo. Even with automatic functions to help in exposure, creative vision is not automatic. Take a look at some images that really grab your attention. There's a difference between a snapshot and a professional shot. Most people can recognize that when they see it. Unfortunately, most people don't know how to shoot that themselves.

Shooting a wedding is much different than shooting a nice vacation photo. Here are some things to consider:

1. Does your friend know how to pose people?
2. Does your friend have the ability to take command of situations when needed?
3. Does your friend know what to expect during the ceremony and know how to position himself to get the best shots?
4. Can your friend work quickly and accurately under pressure?
5. How many weddings has your friend photographed?
6. How many weddings has your friend even attended?
7. Does your friend know how to create artistic-looking shots?
8. Does your friend have backup equipment in case something fails during the day?
9. Does your friend have top quality equipment or just consumer grade equipment?
10. What type of lenses will your friend use for shooting weddings? Can it handle low light situations? Will his camera handle low light situations? Does HE know how to compensate for low light situations?
11. Will the digital images taken be fully Photoshop corrected afterwards or just printed "as is?"
12. Does your friend carry a lot of memory cards so he can shoot at the largest resolution and size and still shoot a lot of photos before running out of memory? How many images will he take?
13. Is your friend insured to cover liability and errors and omissions? In other words, can he pay for the entire wedding to be recreated in case his images are lost or don't turn out?
14. Is your friend familiar with the traditions and regulations of the Church or Synagogue?
15. Are professional Wedding Albums available through your friend? You can't find these in stores.
16. Is your friend familar with how to put together a professional wedding album?
17. Does your friend know what shots to take at a wedding?
18. Does your friend know how to create a natural look when using a flash? Or will his photos have that harsh "flash" look with all the shadows behind the subject?
19. Does your friend know how to work with multiple light sources?
20. How many actual photographs has your friend taken over his lifetime? How many are shots of weddings?
21. Will your friend know how to work with the other vendors you hire for your wedding?
22. Do you want to risk your wedding to your friend's ability or inability to do a proper job?

Here's a final analogy to consider: If you had to have surgery done, would you let an intern do it to save 75% or would you rather have a professional surgeon do it? Same thing with weddings...

Monday, November 14, 2005

Wedding "Formals"

What are wedding "Formals?"

The traditional posed photographs that are taken right after the ceremony of the bridal couple, wedding party and family are called the "Formal" photographs. Even though many clients want a photojournalistic coverage today, most will agree that they need to have some posed photos taken at the wedding.These formal photos are often the pictures that they will put in a frame and place on their desk or even get some large prints made (like perhaps 16x20 or larger) and put them on their walls. Besides, their family expects to see these types of shots done regardless of whether they want photojournalistic coverage or traditional coverage.

I tend to photograph most weddings in a photojournalistic style, but I do offer a fair amount of posed photos as well. Remember, I have been doing this type of photography since 1990 and back then, posed photography was still very popular. But as a documentary photographer working in law enforcement, the photojournalistic style is really what I'm most used to doing the majority of the time. But a good posed photograph can be just as nice as a captured moment done photojournalistically.

To help move this process along, I recommend that a "photo helper" be assigned. This can be one or two people that know your family well. It is their job to gather the people together to get their photos taken. Since the photographer doesn't know all of your family members, it's impossible to know if someone is missing from a group shot. The photo helper's job is to make sure nobody is missing. If a list is created before the wedding of all the group photos you would like to have and then the list is given to the photo helper, that person can gather the next group of people together while another group is being photographed.

This saves a LOT of time. Since I shoot very quickly, the formal photos can move along at a rapid pace. This is important so that your guests are not left waiting forever while you are having these photos taken.

Thursday, November 10, 2005


After posting something on Hockey, I thought it would be interesting to post something on Soccer!

Last year, the Palatine Celtic Soccer Club allowed me to shoot over 40 of their games as well as their tournament. I like shooting sports on occasion to sharpen my reaction skills and there is nothing better than photographing a bunch of kids having fun!

Besides offering just typical photos of the kids playing on the field, I also offered fully Photoshopped versions. As you can see, the original actually has another person behind Kristen (which is not her real name by the way.) But I was able to remove the other person (whose face has been obscured to hide her identity) and other undesirable elements. Then, I Photoshopped other elements to create a “Magazine Cover” and a “Trading Card.”

To shoot soccer, you need to have a long zoom lens with a wide aperture so that the backgrounds blur out nicely. These shots were taken with a Nikon 80-200mm f2.8 lens (for weddings, I use a Nikon 70-200mm f2.8 VR lens which is well known for it’s superior image quality.) Shutter speeds should be as fast as possible. This one was taken at 1/2000 second. This speed will literally stop the spin on a ball even when kicked hard!

Monday, November 07, 2005

Murder / Suicide - Warning: Very Graphic Content

"It was the bloodiest crime scene I had ever been to."

Ah, I see I've caught your attention!

Adding the warning on the title and a comment like, "It was the bloodiest crime scene I had ever been to" is like a magnet just drawing you in, isn't it! :)

Well, it is true. It WAS the bloodiest crime scene I had ever been to. I had just finished a long day in school and at the San Diego Police Department where I was training for my career in law enforcement to work as an Evidence Technician.

My school load was about 21 credit hours per semester. Yes, it was a lot, but I wanted to finish the schooling as quickly as possible. So a typical day for me was to wake up around 6:30 AM and get to class by 8:00 AM. Classes would finish around 2:00 PM and then I'd drive to the police department near the downtown area of San Diego and work in the crime lab dusting prints and doing photography of evidence until about 5:30 PM. I'd then drive back to school in El Cajon, California and take a night class from 7:00 PM until about 9:30 PM (can't recall the actual time...)

Well, after a long day, I just got home and greeted my wife and just set down my school books and then I got a call from one of the Evidence Techs at the PD. "Russ... do you want to go to a homicide?" Hmmm.... long day, I'm tired, haven't even said more than a few words to my wife... so I answered, "Sure!" :) What a glutton for punishment, right? :)

I jumped in my car and headed off to the police department where I was to meet Georgina (yes, a female Evidence Tech, and one of our best too!) We have one hour to respond to any call outs. So, I had to hurry as it would take at least 25 minutes to drive back downtown from where I lived. Luckily we were headed near Miramar (near the Naval Airstation where the famed "Top Gun" training station was) and that wasn't too far away.

I had read a newspaper article about Georgina when I was at school. The San Diego Union newspaper did the article as a human interest story about this female evidence tech from Panama who had gone to the school while she was working as a meter maid (I hate that term) for the PD. She later got promoted to being an Evidence Tech and is currently one of the lab's supervisors! Without a doubt, Georgina was one of the nicest persons I have ever met in my life and was very inspirational to me as I wanted to be as good as her in this field. We remain friends to this day, but it's been a while since I've been in contact with her.

Any way, we drove in the crime scene van to the crime scene and were told what had happened. Early in the day, the mother of a young 5 year old boy had threated her son and husband with a knife and threaten to kill them both. The father ran out of the house and went to neighbors to ask for help. The police was called and the SWAT team was deployed. Why he ran out of the house without the boy, I'll never be able to figure out.

Now SWAT typically does not just go charging into a home with guns blasting away. They have to assess the situation and determine the best way to access the home. Often they will use mirrors and other things to see around corners. Any way, after entering the home and looking around with mirrors, they saw the body of a woman laying in the laundry room in a pool of blood. Beneath her was the body of the 5 year old boy she had apparently murdered before taking her own life. She had slit the boy's throat with a knife before doing the same to herself.

We were to find out later that she had a history of mental problems and that the boy had just finished celebrating his 5th birthday.

When we entered the scene, we made our way to the laundry room where we were greeted by several of the homicide detectives. Sure enough, I saw the bodies on the floor which had a massive amount of blood all over it. In addition, there was a huge blood spatter on the wall. It was the bloodiest mess I had ever seen. Georgina had put on her "homicide shoes" as she called them before we entered the scene. She told me that she wears these shoes for work because she didn't want blood all over her regular shoes. Now when she told me this in the van, I didnt' think much of it. But after seeing this scene, I understood.

She also put on plastic shoe covers (so did I) just so she could walk in the blood to get to the evidence and the bodies. Yes, it's not a clean job like some shows like CSI make it out to be. It's a real mess sometimes.

Well, Georgina systematically photographed the scene and documented the evidence found as well. As I was just interning at the time, I only observed. But I was very impressed at the way Georgina handled the evidence and was able to separate her emotions from the work. Georgina is a mother of two girls and I'm sure if you just thought about the people who laid on the ground in their own blood, it would be very difficult to work.

Later, I asked Georgina about how she was able to do the work without getting emotionally attached. She told me that it was very important to look at the bodies as just evidence and not people any more. If you looked at them as people, it would be very difficult to do this job. I fully understood and realized that this is what makes an evidence tech able to do this type of work.

I forgot to mention that Georgina said a prayer in the crime van before we enter the home. As we were both Christians and have a very strong belief in God, it was very nice to see that even in work like Law Enforcement that she asked God to give her the strength to do a good job and for the souls of the people who we were going to see when we went inside the house.

That day had a major impact on me. I got to see a real professional at work, I saw what was the bloodiest mess I had ever seen in my life and I got to see what horrible things people can do to others and themselves.

I left the crime scene at about 3:00 AM and Georgina was still working on the scene. I had one of the patrol officers drive me back to the station where I picked up my personal vehicle and drove home and then crawled into bed about 3:45 AM. I got up the next morning at 6:30 AM for classes and started my routine again.

Ah, those were the days! Oh... how did I do in school with 21 credit hours per semester? I graduated at the top of my class with a 3.94 out of 4.0 grade point average, received an award by the Administration of Justice Department for best student, got an accomodation by the Chief of Police for the work I did at the crime lab and was picked up by the DA's office in San Diego as an investigative technician. :)

Now I shoot weddings....

(Edit note: 12/04/05 - I recently heard that Georgina has since retired from SDPD, so I thought I'd update this post with this information.)

Thursday, November 03, 2005

Wedding Albums

Wow... wedding albums come in a huge variety of sizes, styles and prices. There are two major types available right now, matted albums and flush mount albums. The most common being the matted album.

Matted albums are just that... a mat is used to frame the prints on the page. These are the style of albums you've seen for many years. It's a classic style which utilize various sizes of prints: 4x5, 4x6, 5x7 and 8x10. You can fit up to four 4x6 prints on a page, two 5x7 prints or one 8x10 print. A typical 25 page matted album will hold up to (200) 4x6 prints. It's the most popular size album I have available.

Flush mount albums are the new "digital" coffee table book style of albums. They are often very dramatic looking because you can do full double page panorama prints which are actually glued onto the cardboard page making it look like it's printed right on the page itself. And, you can have other images placed on top of the main image creating a montage look. Just look at my post on Photo Montages and you'll get an idea of what a flush mount album might look like.

These albums are very cool, but they also cost a little more too.

Recently, I put together a new option of having two matted albums to house all of the prints I give my clients. One album is a 25 page Renaissance album which can hold up to (200) 4x6 prints and then the other album is a 25 page Renaissance album which will hold (50) 8x10 prints. It's amazing when you see two huge albums stacked one on top of the other! Talk about impressive.

The cost of these two albums with all the prints inside still comes out less expensive than a single 12 page flush mount album. Amazing!

I believe you actually get more for your money with matted albums but I do have the flush mounts available for those who prefer that style. The design costs and manufacturing costs of flush mount albums are things to consider if you opt for this type of album. They are definitely the more contemporary style of album, but it does cost a little more.

To see some albums, go to I've also created a new site for you to see catalog pages from the Renaissance Milano series of albums along with the various mat styles. Visit it at If you right click on the links you can download these to your hard drive. Otherwise you can just click on the links to see them with your web browser.

For those who are interested in seeing what an album that contains all 8x10 prints looks like, I have put together a sample 24 page (48 prints) Renaissance Leather album just for this purpose. It is a Matte-Black cover with a single 4x4 square cameo in the cover and has silver guilding on the page edges. Be sure to ask to see it at your album layout session! It's impressive.

Mondays and Thursdays

I'll be posting new and exciting entries on Mondays and Thursdays. So please check in on those days to see the latest posts! Of course, you are welcome here on any day of the week as well... :)

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Postings And Other Miscellaneous Things

Well, after much thought and advice from others, I think I'll be posting on here twice per week instead of daily going forward.

This is now "booking season" for me (as opposed to "wedding season") and it's getting rather busy. 2006 is going to be a great year it seems for me not just with new clients who have found me off the internet, but from many referrals from past clients as well. For that, I am very thankful and grateful.

Also, for those readers who are camera buffs, Nikon has finally announced the D200 camera! It's now official and is great news for my 2006 clients as I will be using this camera for your weddings. Not to worry for those who are getting married still in 2005... you haven't been forgotten. The Fuji S3 Pro that I use currently along with my D100 (just sold one today!) will easily handle your wedding. The S3 Pro at 12.3 MP, is a larger megapixel camera as well (for those who think more megapixels equate to better performance.) In reality, either camera will do just fine for weddings.

The D200 will be a 10.2 MP camera as opposed to the 6.1 MP D100 camera. This should improve on images that will be used for larger prints, but most likely will not mean much of anything for photos printed under 11x14 in size. For smaller prints I doubt you will be able to tell any difference in quality between the two cameras. But being up to date is still a good thing so I'll be purchasing a D200 well before the 2006 wedding season.

Nikon expects the D200 to be available on store shelves by the end of December. How exciting! Can't wait! :)

Things I've Done At Weddings

I've done SO MANY different things at weddings, it will amaze you.

Here's the list:

1. Vocalist - I've sung at many weddings in the past.
2. Guitarist - I've also played my guitar as an instrumentalist at weddings.
3. Guitarist / Vocalist (Receptions) - I've played many wedding receptions with my band.
4. Photographer - We all know this one...
5. Best Man - Been there, done that...
6. Usher - When I'm not best man, I get to be an usher...
7. Scripture Reader - Best job at the wedding...
8. Groom - yes... I'm married...
9. Driver - ok... I didn't get to drive a limo, but I have driven my own car with the Bride & Groom inside.

I figure if I get one of those internet licenses, maybe I can perform wedding ceremonies too! How cool would it be if I did this:

Usher people into the wedding, stand up with the other groomsmen, play my guitar as the bride enters the room, get up and read some scripture passages, sing a song or two, perform the ceremony, take the photos during the ceremony and reception, drive the happy couple around the block, and play with the band during the reception!

Now if only I could bake the cake, do the flower arrangements and cater the reception while coordinating everything too, I'd be a one-stop vendor! :)