Getting that Baby on Film

In the many types of photography you may have to do as a photographer, baby shots may be the most difficult.  Even if you are not a professional photographer but you are trying to get a great looking portrait of your own child, getting them to cooperate is a major undertaking.

The first rule to live by with baby photography is that, as a matter of face, they ARE the boss of this shoot.  The entire process has to be built around that fragile mood of this child.  But there are a couple of tricks of the trade you can use, professional or amateur to get the best shot of that sweet baby.

Baby’s respond well when they are fed and rested, with people they know and trust and when they get all the attention.  So right off the bat, you as mom and dad can see to it that the shoot happens when requirement number one has been met.  Now, that is not always easy.  If you have an appointment to take the baby to the get his or her portrait made at the local photography studio, that mood may not be the way you want it to be.

That is why, if at all possible we would discourage taking the shots in a studio.  If you can set up a shoot at the baby’s home, where there is a comfortable setting and much that is familiar around, you have many more opportunities to get that smile that will make the portrait of a lifetime there.  Now that calls for a “house call” by the photographer but if he or she is a photographer that wants only the best shot of the child, they will work with what you want.

Another advantage of scheduling the shoot at home is that you know when the baby usually is at his or her best so you can schedule it when that time of day is just right.  In fact if the photographer can show up during nap time, there is plenty of time to stage the shot before the angel awakens.  And by eliminating the car ride to the studio, you take away a huge risk of that fragile mood going south en route.

A second tip comes from the fact that babies like people they know.  So if the photographer has time to meet the child, play with him or her and get a rapport started, then they will be more receptive to playful direction to get the shot you want.  You will have to be clever how you introduce the camera as it can either be an object of fear or looked upon as a toy and the baby will want to play with it.

As far as the camera goes, think about the kind of equipment you will utilize to get that perfect baby portrait.  You want it to be portable, so you can do those on location shots that work so much better.  It should be small, both for portability and to not alarm the child.  Digital is best because you can shoot lots of shots and never have to reload.  But make sure it’s a good quality piece of equipment that will shoot at a high resolution so when you get that prefect shot, it will transfer to a portrait printing nicely.

By setting up the room with the kind of backdrops that will create a good portrait, you can then have the baby begin to play with her or her toys and interact with parents, siblings or the photographer in a happy way.  Before long that sound of the camera clicking and even the flash will become familiar and the baby won’t pay it any mind.  

The best shots are of the baby laughing.  Try to get on the same level with the child as he or she plays.  Mom and dad know the notices or games that always get a giggle so exploit their inside information extensively.  The baby will enjoy getting to know you and hearing those familiar games coming from you should do well at getting that sweet laugh or smile you want.

By learning the baby’s personality and how to get in sync with the child, you can coax pictures from the shoot that might other wise be impossible to get.  And that is what you want if a portrait of a baby that you want to last a lifetime.

I Hate Writing Articles

Owning, running and maintaining an internet based business or a site needs articles. Plain and simple, every who has a site knows this. Even those who don’t have sites but are frequent internet users knows this as well. Articles quench the thirst for information and knowledge of the people. Plus, the articles provides many other benefits for the site.

The benefits that articles provide are putting a site high in the ranking in search results of keywords and keyword phrases that pertains or are relevant to his or her site. They also provide attraction to website visitors when they are appreciated and is linked to your site from another site or newsletter. Articles provide for the increase of the confidence and trust levels of customers to your site and company.

Many articles are also beneficial to both company and its traffic. When the readers like the articles, they would tell more of their friends, family and peers and recommend your site to them, providing for a larger volume of traffic. You get bigger sales if your traffic trusts and believes in you. Your product or services would be much easier to sell when they know you know what you are doing and talking about.

So ok, we have established that articles are very important to a site and to business. Articles are crucial and to keep ahead in the game, a site must have an article, it is imperative. There is one dilemma though, not many people like writing articles.

Many website owners would rather spend their time on something else, and unless you’re a big time company, you don’t have the necessary resources to use on a pool of article writers. Plagiarism or copying of other articles is frowned upon and could easily get you into trouble, worst case scenario; a hefty fine and jail time.

So what are the other options? Well, for starters if you hate writing articles and you can’t afford to hire people to write for you then don’t. Get free articles. The first place to look at for free articles is the public domain.  Here you won’t have problems with copyright infringement and the following penalties and fines if you get caught for plagiarism.

Public domain articles are articles freely given to the public for public use. You can do whatever you want with it. You can place it on your site, name it as yours, put it in a newsletter its you decision. Always remember though that you will have to choose articles that is very relevant to your site.

The downside to public domain articles is that since it is free for everybody, many of your competitors may have access to them as well. Since every site needs to be original and unique even though you have the same niche, this could be a predicament. You may also have to edit them a bit to place more keywords and keyword phrases to make them better.

Another way to get free articles is to allow other sites which has the same subject or topic as yours to submit articles to your site. This would be only to augment your existing content or else all your articles would be leading to other sites since these articles would have resource boxes with them that could link or direct the readers to their site. That’s why it is important to have your own articles; you cold use them to link your site to other sites as well.

But, to truly feel the impact of what a good article to you, go for original ones. There are many article writers who do part time and freelance article writing jobs that charges only minimal fees. You can get good articles that have all the keywords and keyword phrases you need and people are looking for.

The investment you made for these articles would be worthwhile because you could use them for all the benefits you could offer. You hold copyrights to them and you will be able to use them anyway you want. As your articles help you in building your business and your site, you will have more articles to write and maybe then you wont be having second thoughts about articles.

Githyanki Pathfinder

Githyanki are psychic humanoids who dwell in the Astral Plane. Long ago, the ancestors of the githyanki were primitive humans (or a race very like humans), enslaved en masse by the star-spanning Illithid Empire. The downfall of the illithids came when, through centuries of breeding programs, they endowed their slaves with psychic powers to make them more useful. A woman named Gith arose among the slaves and led them in revolt, successfully breaking the chains that bound their race. The Illithid Empire crumbled not long after.

Gith wanted to exterminate all illithids forever, but the war hero Zerthimon believed they should isolate themselves and focus on introspection. There was a civil war and Gith killed Zerthimon; when it was over Gith’s followers became the githyanki and colonized the Astral Plane, while Zerthimon’s followers, the githzerai, fled to the Maelstrom.

After the war, Gith went to make a deal with the dragon god Dahak. No one knows the details of their deal, but Dahak promised Gith that her people would always have the aid of red dragons to serve as mounts and guardians. Gith never returned; some say she agreed to be devoured by Dahak for the sake of her people. However, Gith left her second-in-command, the sorceress Vlaakith the First, to become the first queen of the githyanki. Vlaakith’s descendants, all of whom took her name in her honor, continued to rule the githyanki in unbroken successon for millennia.

However, the last, Vlaakith CLVII, bore no children, so instead of letting the line die she turned herself into a lich. She has continued to rule the githyanki for thousands of years and has killed any githyanki who rises above 16th level. Her ultimate goal is to become a god and rule for eternity.

The githyanki still inhabit the Astral Plane. Their capital, the floating city of Tu’narath, is the greatest citadel in that dimension. The githzerai constantly plot to expand their control over the entire multiverse, launching frequent raids against the Material Plane with flying ships and red dragon mounts. Githyanki have a highly lawful, martial society in which almost all individuals are combat-trained either as githwarriors (fighters, rangers, rogues, and other martial classes), warlocks (arcane and psionic classes like wizards, sorcerers, psions, and wilders), or the highly respected gish, who combine both disciplines (including magi, bards, psychic warriors, soulknives, and various multiclassed combinations).

Among the githyanki, all religion is outlawed, save for the worship of Queen Vlaakith; a handful of clerical githyanki heretics may worship Asmodeus, but they are slain on discovery. Most githyanki healers are bards (or, if you use Psionics Expanded, vitalists).

GITHYANKI

CR: 1/2
XP: 200
Githyanki fighter 1
LE Medium humanoid (extraplanar, gith)
Init: +3; Senses: Darkvision 60 ft.; Perception +0
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AC: 19, touch 13, flat-footed 16 (+3 Dex, +6 armor)
hp: 12 (1 HD)
Fort +4, Ref +3, Will +0
SR 7
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Speed: 20 ft. (base speed 30 ft.)
Melee: Masterwork greatsword +5 (2d6+3/19-20)
Ranged: Composite longbow (+2 Str bonus) +4 (1d8+2/x3)
Spell-Like Abilities (CL 1st, concentration +0):
3/day - Daze (DC 9), mage hand
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Str 15, Dex 16, Con 15, Int 10, Wis 10, Cha 8
Base Atk: +1; CMB: +3; CMD: 16
Feats: Power Attack, Weapon Focus (greatsword)
Skills: Craft (armor or weapons) +4, Diplomacy -1 (+3 vs. red dragons), Intimidate +3; Racial Modifiers: +4 Diplomacy vs. red dragons
Languages: Common, Gith
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Environment: Any (Astral Plane)
Organization: Company (2-4 3rd-level fighters), squad (11-20 3rd-level fighters, plus 2 7th-level sergeants, 1 9th-level captain, and 1 young red dragon), or regiment (30-100 3rd-level fighters, plus 1 7th-level sergeant per 10 members, 5 7th-level lieutenants, 3 9th-level captains, 1 16th-level supreme leader, and 1 adult red dragon per 30 members)
Treasure: NPC gear (breastplate)

GITHYANKI CHARACTERS
+2 Dexterity, +2 Constitution, -2 Wisdom
Medium: Githyanki are Medium creatures and have no bonuses or penalties due to their size.
Normal Speed: Githyanki base land speed is 30 feet.
Darkvision: Githyanki can see in the dark up to 60 feet.
Githyanki Magic: Githyanki gain the following spell-like abilities based on their class level. The caster level for these effects is equal to the githyanki’s level. The DC for these powers is equal to 10 + the power’s level + the githyanki’s Charisma level.
Level - Spell-Like Abilities
1st - 3/day - Daze, mage hand
3rd - 3/day - Blur
7th - 3/day - Dimension door
9th - 3/day - Telekinesis; 1/day - Plane shift
Red Dragon Pact: Githyanki gain a +4 racial bonus on Diplomacy checks when dealing with red dragons.
Spell Resistance: A githyanki has spell resistance equal to its Hit Dice + 6.
Languages: Githyanki begin play speaking Common and Gith. Githyanki with high Intelligence scores can choose from the following: Abyssal, Celestial, Draconic, Infernal, and Undercommon.

GITHYANKI SILVER SWORDS
These impressive weapons are typically carried by githyanki combatants of 9th level and higher. Of githyanki make, a silver sword is a +1 silvered greatsword that looks like a standard weapon while still in its sheath, but when drawn, the silver sword transforms into a column of silvery liquid, altering the weapon’s balance round by round as the blade’s shape flows and shimmers. A silver sword has the additional quality of reaching into the minds of the foes it strikes, disrupting their psionic powers. A target hit by the weapon must succeed on a DC 17 Fortitude save or lose any psionic abilities for 1d4 rounds.

High-level githyanki often take the Improved Sunder feat, using their silver swords to attack astral travelers’ silver cords (see the astral projection spell, Core Rulebook, pg. 244). The normally insubstantial cord is treated as a tangible object with the owner’s AC, hardness 10, and 20 hit points.

Some silver swords (belonging to particularly high-level githyanki) have additional enhancements. Enhancing a silver sword is just like working with any other weapon that has existing abilities. A normal githyanki silver sword is treated as having a +2 enhancement bonus for this purpose: +1 for its bonus on attack and damage rolls and another +1 for the sword’s antipsionic ability.

PSIONIC GITHYANKI
If you are using Psionics Unleashed from Dreamscarred Press, make the following changes to the githyanki’s stats.
The githyanki gains the (psionic) subtype.
Psi-Like Abilities (ML 1st, concentration +0):
3/day - Far hand, telepathic lash (DC 10)
Feats: The githyanki gains Wild Talent, granting it 2 power points.

PSIONIC GITHYANKI CHARACTERS
Githyanki Psionics: Instead of spell-like abilities, psionic githyanki gain the following psi-like abilities based on their class level. The manifester level for these effects is equal to the githyanki’s level. The DC for these powers is equal to 10 + the power’s level + the githyanki’s Charisma level.
Level - Psi-Like Abilities
1st - 3/day - Far hand, telepathic lash
3rd - 3/day - Concealing amorpha
7th - 3/day - Fold space, telekinetic force or telekinetic maneuver
9th - 1/day - Planar travel
Naturally Psionic:
Githyanki gain the Wild Talent feat as a bonus feat at 1st level. If a githyanki takes levels in a psionic class, it instead gains the Psionic Talent feat.
Psionic Aptitude: When a githyanki takes a level in a favored class, it can choose to gain an additional power point instead of a hit point or skill point.