Hawaii Fusion Event | Shooting Professional Photos and Videos on an Entry Level Budget

First of all I want to preface this post with the magic word... FREE.


I often hear some of the same things when people see some of our (The Bui Brothers) work or the work of some of the other photographers currently producing great photo fusion videos...

"I could do it if I had nice cameras like yours!"

"On my budget it isn't possible."

"Video editing is complicated."

I don't blame people for thinking, feeling and voicing these things. Many of the recent technological advances have been so fast and sudden that people don't realize the quality of gear that is within their reach. They also have no idea how amazingly easy some of the recent video editing software releases have made things for the everyday person.

Photo fusion isn't even an everyday term yet (Lan and I recently had a discussion about what photo fusion is HERE). Many people have no idea what it is or what can be done with it. Here's an example of photofusion the way that The Bui Brothers present it... behind the scenes of the photo shoot of television and web celebrity (House, Dollhouse, Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog) Felicia Day:


I teamed up with SmugMug and decided to create a project to show everyone JUST how easy it is to create beautiful work... with some of the most affordable gear available. I'm going on a one week destination photo fusion trip to O'ahu, Hawaii... bringing a camera and lens combo that's less than $1,000 and a set of accessories and gear that is also just around $1,000 (in addition to some home-made DIY items!). The point will be to not only show what is possible with this entry-level gear, but to detail how I do all of the shoots that I'll be doing during the week.

I'll be announcing the gear list in a coming blog post, but we'll basically be doing a variety of photography and video shooting using a consumer DSLR, natural light, wirelessly triggered small flashes, affordable underwater equipment and a few accessories.

What you'll see:

  • DIY tutorials - Before the trip I'll be posting videos of the preparation for the event, including how I make a number of Do-It-Yourself items that I'll be using during the week for both photography and video.
  • Photography Tutorials - We have 4 photo shoots planned and will be shooting behind-the-scenes fusion videos of each one. These will look in detail at the wardrobe, the locations, the lighting and even some of the camera setting choices we make.
  • Photo Fusion Videos - We're going to produce a couple photo fusion videos just to share. We'll have behind-the-scenes videos of these as well.
  • Video editing screen capture tutorial - watch how I edit a photo fusion video from start to finish.
  • Videoblogs - We'll be videoblogging daily from O'ahu... personal videoblogs that will allow you to follow our short adventure. Hopefully they'll be funny and entertaining.
  • Live workshop in Honolulu - We're going to be giving a live workshop in Honolulu to a limited number of people, and some of what we do there will be recorded and shared. (more info HERE)


We have a tiny two-person team for the trip... which is being sponsored (along with the fantastic entry-level list of gear) by SmugMug. All of the media we post from the trip will also be hosted by them, which is a really easy way to show you how cool their services are. I'm mostly excited about the HD video streaming, which is fantastic.

  • Vu Bui - photographer - You can see some of my work at The Bui Brothers Blog. We shoot photos and videos for professionals, and we create behind-the-scenes videos of almost everything we do. You can follow me on Twitter: http://twitter.com/vubui
  • Tracie Cotta - model - Tracie is a model and makeup artist from Orange County. She was the makeup artist on many of our recent high-profile shoots (including the Felicia Day shoot in the video above). You can see her model mayhem gallery HERE. You can follow her on Twitter: http://twitter.com/traciecotta

A quick video of us talking about the event:


The event (I'm calling it a mini-tour, even though it's only to one island) will be from September 20th to September 26th. The videos will be posted during our stay and will continue afterwards as we get everything edited and completed.

We will be staying in Kailua on O'ahu in Hawaii. We'll be shooting at various locations on the island, starting at one of the most beautiful beaches in the world... Lanikai Beach.

View Larger Map

The live workshop will be held in Honolulu and details about it can be found at the Hawaii Photo Fusion Workshop announcement page.


Sign up to receive email updates from me about this tour, future workshops and the video tutorials to be released in the future.

You'll also have the first opportunity to download the final tutorial pack which will include some of our $50 video editing and blogging tutorial videos for free.




Live workshop in Honolulu - get details about the live workshop which will cover the basics of creating photo fusion videos... everything from video editing to photo lighting.

More photo fusion from The Bui Brothers -

  • iJustine - photo shoot at the Ritz Carlton in Laguna Niguel with behind the scenes video.
  • Veronica Belmont - photo shoot in the basement of the House of Shields bar in San Francisco with behind the scenes video.
  • Micah Lee - photo shoot in Old Town Orange with behind the scenes video.

Please feel free to contact me with any questions or comments at vu@vubui.com or you can use my contact form.

This event is brought to you by:

The Bui Brothers LogoSmug Mug Logo