Forum Login

What's New Archives          Jul 01, 2012 - Jan 01, 2013

Return to the What's New archives page.
Go to the current What's New page.


1 July, 2012 - Emotion - The Magic Element

What role does emotion play in your photography? In his newest essay, Emotion – The Magic Element,  William Neill shares his thoughts on this provocative subject.

 

 

Sales always slow down in the summer. We wanted to do something to motivate you to spend a bit, here on your favourite web site.

So, we're doing a give-away. Every order for one of our download videos – tutorials as well as Video Journals, entitles you to a chance to win a new Olympus O-MD E-M5 camera, one of the hottest cameras of the year.

This contest is open to anyone, anywhere in the world. All you need to do is purchase something. Come on. Don't just sit there – make a purchase and become eligable to win!


 




4 July, 2012 - Mt. Assiniboine - Geotagged

Miles Hecker's Geotagged travel essay for the month of July is titled Mt. Assiniboine – North America's Matterhorn.

 

     

"You and Jeff did it again!  A great series of videos.

I've watched the earlier Camera to Print series as well as the LR 2 & 3 videos and as usual, 
I learned new technique and ideas 
even though I've been behind a camera for 45 years.

Additionally, the rapport you two have is most engaging, enjoyable, and totally different than the sterile video tutorials from others (I'm afflicted with being a visual learner). 

Again, a great series of videos  that have helped me grow once again."

 




7 July, 2012 - The Making of Pilbara Storm

Peter Eastway is one of Australia's best known fine art landscape photographers. He is also a widely read author and educator.

In The Making of Pilbara Storm Peter shares with us his post-processing techniques for this remarkable photograph. 

  

Sales always slow down in the summer. We wanted to do something to motivate you to spend a bit, here on your favourite web site.

So, we're doing a give-away. Every order for one of our download videos – tutorials as well as Video Journals, entitles you to a chance to win a new Olympus O-MD E-M5 camera, one of the hottest cameras of the year.

This contest is open to anyone, anywhere in the world. All you need to do is purchase something. Come on. Don't just sit there – make a purchase and become eligable to win!




10 July, 2012 - Photographing Tuscany, A Unique Approach

Sometimes a photographic project becomes a passion, requiring specialized techniques and the development of unique tools.

One example of this can be found in Photography Tuscany – A Unique Approach, by Enrio Cinnali

 

     

"You and Jeff did it again!  A great series of videos.

I've watched the earlier Camera to Print series as well as the LR 2 & 3 videos and as usual, 
I learned new technique and ideas 
even though I've been behind a camera for 45 years.

Additionally, the rapport you two have is most engaging, enjoyable, and totally different than the sterile video tutorials from others (I'm afflicted with being a visual learner). 

Again, a great series of videos  that have helped me grow once again."


 




13 July, 2012 - Sony RX100 Review

The hottest high quality pocket camera of the second half of the 20th Century was the Rollei S35. Small size, great lens, and capable of top image quality.

Now, Sony with the RX100, which started shipping world-wide this month, seems to have stepped into the S35's shoes. The RX100 is with little argument the best digital pocket camera to date. All the right boxes have been checked. Inexpensive it's not, but it is pretty terriific.

  

Sales always slow down in the summer. We wanted to do something to motivate you to spend a bit, here on your favourite web site.

So, we're doing a give-away. Every order for one of our download videos – tutorials as well as Video Journals, entitles you to a chance to win a new Olympus O-MD E-M5 camera, one of the hottest cameras of the year.

This contest is open to anyone, anywhere in the world. All you need to do is purchase something. Come on. Don't just sit there – make a purchase and become eligible to win!

 




18 July, 2012 - Notes on Photographic Composition

Whenever I am asked about photographic composition, I tell my students to go to Art Galleries and Museums to look at the composition of artworks. We can learn as much or more by observation of others work as we do by following any rules.

Today, Mahesh Venkitachalam presents The Second Story - A Note on Photographic Composition in which he tells of his initial efforts to learn composition. 

 


   

 "Every time I go back to a module I had already seen, I learn additional things.  I have never seen tutorials that have the excellent mix of what the features are, 
how to use them, enough of the under-the-hood information 
and concepts so that I can utilize the features creatively and efficiently, 
and just enough humor to keep the motivation level high.  Wow!
"

 

 




July 21, 2012 - On a Personal Note

Dear Friends and Colleagues,

I'm writing to update you on some personal health developments that will affect my activities over the next several months.

In late June I was diagnosed with bladder cancer and am now recovering in hospital following a Radical Cystectomy.

Recovery will be a lengthy process, taking some 6-8 weeks. In the context of the web site, this means that during that period, while I will soon be able to continue my writing and editorial work, my ability to do new product reviews, teach, and attend pre-Photokina product preview events will be limited.

I still hope to attend Photokina in Cologne in mid-September and resume normal activity following that. Between now and then will be devoted to health recovery. Thanks in advance for your thoughts and best wishes. With 1.5 million monthly readers I obviously won't be able to  communicate as directly with everyone as I might wish. 

Cancer is scary, but it also can be beaten. Please make a donation to your local Cancer Society. 

Thanks,

Michael

Update




24 July, 2012 - Landscape Astrophotography

The night has always fascinated photographers. Night-time urban photography presents its own challenges. But with a bit of work, and some easy-to-master technique, combining landscape and astrophotography opens up a new world of possabilities.

Find out more in Landscape Astrophotography, by Manel Soria.

 

  

Sales always slow down in the summer. We wanted to do something to motivate you to spend a bit, here on your favourite web site.

So, we're doing a give-away. Every order for one of our download videos – tutorials as well as Video Journals, entitles you to a chance to win a new Olympus O-MD E-M5 camera, one of the hottest cameras of the year.

This contest is open to anyone, anywhere in the world. All you need to do is purchase something. Come on. Don't just sit there – make a purchase and become eligible to win!

 




30 July, 2012 - Why Personal Style is Important

Does your photography display a personal style? Our regular columnist Alain Briot looks at this question in his latest essay, Why Personal Style is Important.

Alain has a new training DVD on the way and this brief essay is a teaser for that.

 

   

 "Every time I go back to a module I had already seen, I learn additional things.  I have never seen tutorials that have the excellent mix of what the features are, 
how to use them, enough of the under-the-hood information 
and concepts so that I can utilize the features creatively and efficiently, 
and just enough humor to keep the motivation level high.  Wow!
"

 

 




4 August, 2012 - Industry Insights - From Past to Future

Companies are like people, they have personalities. Some are slow and methodical, other aggressive and adventurous. 

During my recent hospitalization I had lots of opportunity to ponder the state of the industry that I have been working in and following for the past several decades. Some observations on a few of the major industry players titled Industry Insights – From Past to Future is now online

   

Sales always slow down in the summer. We wanted to do something to motivate you to spend a bit, here on your favourite web site.

So, we're doing a give-away. Every order for one of our download videos – tutorials as well as Video Journals, entitles you to a chance to win a new Olympus O-MD E-M5 camera, one of the hottest cameras of the year.

This contest is open to anyone, anywhere in the world. All you need to do is purchase something. Come on. Don't just sit there – make a purchase and become eligible to win!





8 August, 2012 - Dynamic Patience

What role does patience play in your photography? Do you rush from one location to another? Do you contemplate and prepare, or do you count on chance?

In his new essay, Dynamic Patience – The Essential Photographic Skill, photographer Bors Vesterby shares with us some insights on these questions.


This Contest Ends in Just One Week!

   

Sales always slow down in the summer. We wanted to do something to motivate you to spend a bit, here on your favourite web site.

So, we're doing a give-away. Every order for one of our download videos – tutorials as well as Video Journals, entitles you to a chance to win a new Olympus O-MD E-M5 camera, one of the hottest cameras of the year.

This contest is open to anyone, anywhere in the world. All you need to do is purchase something. Come on. Don't just sit there – make a purchase and become eligible to win!

 




11 August, 2012 - Pimping Out the RX100

One thing that the amazing Sony RX100 needs to improve its handling is a grip. Richard Franiec makes some of the best small camera grips around, and I review his latest offering for the small Sony as well as another must-have accessory in Pimping Out Your RX100.


 This Contest Ends Next Week!

   

Sales always slow down in the summer. We wanted to do something to motivate you to spend a bit, here on your favourite web site.

So, we're doing a give-away. Every order for one of our download videos – tutorials as well as Video Journals, entitles you to a chance to win a new Olympus O-MD E-M5 camera, one of the hottest cameras of the year.

This contest is open to anyone, anywhere in the world. All you need to do is purchase something. Come on. Don't just sit there – make a purchase and become eligible to win!
 




14 August, 2012 - Tokina 300mm Mirror Lens for MFT - A Hands-On Review

Mirror lenses have been around since the 1950's. Some are better than others, but they never are really up to the quality of a good prime of comparable focal length, or even a decent zoom.

But their small size and comparative low cost keep them popular among some photographers, and their unique "drawing" ability appeals to some.

Lens maker Tokina had just released a 300mm F6.3 Macro Mirror lens for Micro Four Thirds, and I have just field tested this new lens on my Olympus OM-D E-M5. My review is now online.


 

 This Contest Ends August 15

   

Sales always slow down in the summer. We wanted to do something to motivate you to spend a bit, here on your favourite web site.

So, we're doing a give-away. Every order for one of our download videos – tutorials as well as Video Journals, entitles you to a chance to win a new Olympus O-MD E-M5 camera, one of the hottest cameras of the year.

This contest is open to anyone, anywhere in the world. All you need to do is purchase something. Come on. Don't just sit there – make a purchase and become eligible to win!

 




16 August, 2012 - Draw Winner Announced

The winner of our Summer Madness Giveaway has been announced. It is Patrick Eozenou of Washington DC. Contratulations Patrick. Your Olympus OM-D E-M5 camera body will be on its way to you this week.

 

   

 "Every time I go back to a module I had already seen, I learn additional things.  I have never seen tutorials that have the excellent mix of what the features are, 
how to use them, enough of the under-the-hood information 
and concepts so that I can utilize the features creatively and efficiently, 
and just enough humor to keep the motivation level high.  Wow!
"


 




18 July, 2012 - Improbable Leviathan - The Kebler Pass Aspen Grove, by Miles Hecker

Did you know that a grove of Aspen is a single organism? I didn't – at least not until I read Mile's Hecker's latest geotagged location essay Improbable Leviathan – The Kebler Pass Aspen Grove

     

"You and Jeff did it again!  A great series of videos.

I've watched the earlier Camera to Print series as well as the LR 2 & 3 videos and as usual, I learned
new technique and ideas even though I've been behind a camera for 45 years.

Additionally, the rapport you two have is most engaging, enjoyable, and totally different than the sterile video tutorials from others (I'm afflicted with being a visual learner). 

Again, a great series of videos that have helped me grow once again."

 

 




20 August, 2012 - Are Museums Destroying Art?

Many photographers find visiting art museums to be inspirational. But there is another type of photographer – trophy hunting tourists and school kids – who are destroying not just the pleasure of a museum visit, but likely also the art itself.

Find out more in Mark Dubovoy's most recent essay – Are Museums Destrying Art?

 

   

 "Every time I go back to a module I had already seen, I learn additional things.  I have never seen tutorials that have the excellent mix of what the features are, 
how to use them, enough of the under-the-hood information 
and concepts so that I can utilize the features creatively and efficiently, 
and just enough humor to keep the motivation level high.  Wow!
"


 




25 August, 2012 - Learning About Photography from Classical Music

Yes, I care as much about new gear and technology as you do. But, I also try to regularly publish essays on "photography" – you know, that thing we do with our shiny new toys to gives them purpose.

Today's essay by contributor Mark Schacter is titled Everything That's Important in Photography I Learned from Classical Music.

 

     

"You and Jeff did it again!  A great series of videos.

I've watched the earlier Camera to Print series as well as the LR 2 & 3 videos and as usual, I learned 
new technique and ideas even though I've been behind a camera for 45 years.

Additionally, the rapport you two have is most engaging, enjoyable, and totally different than the sterile video tutorials from others (I'm afflicted with being a visual learner). 

Again, a great series of videos that have helped me grow once again."


 




27 August, 2012 - Kimberely Photo Expedition Cruise

In June, 2013, together with Art Wolfe and Christian Fletcher, I will be leading a photo expedition cruise on the ship True North, up the wild Kimberley coast of western Australia.

Sponsored by Phase One as part of its highly regarded PODAS workshop series, this is an opportunity to join three of the world's preeminant photographic instructors for a week of shooting and mentoring. Every participant will be provided with an IQ160 medium format back, a Phase One camera, and an available selection of lenses for use during the trip.

This will almost certainly be the only photographic workshop that will be taught by Michael Reichmann in 2013, as I intended on focusing on several personal photographic projects in the new year.

Find Out More


New Camera Reviews in Process

For those hankering for some new camera review meat – don't dispare, Photokina is just around the corner and there will be lot's to satiate every appetite.

In the meantime I will this week begin reviewing two cameras that just started shipping; the Sigma DP2 and the Panasonic FZ200. These cameras are as different as one could imagine, intended to satisfy the interests and needs of two quite disparate photographic constituencies. But both are breakthroughs. Watch for my reports to find out why.


Update

Adobe has announced the availability of Lightroom 4.2 Release Candidate, along with ACR 7.2. Included is support for a number of new cameras, including, thank goodness, the Panasonic FZ200 which I have just started testing.

After a day working with Silkypix I thought that I'd either throw the computer through the window, return the camera, or have to shoot jpgs (perish the thought).

Not to put too fine a point on it, but camera makers that include Silkypix should all be sentenced to Dante's Fourth Circle of Hell. I can't think of any lesser punishment that would fit the crime. What are they thinking?! 




30 August, 2012 - From Tippy Boat to Gallery Piece

It's always interesting and informative to learn how a difficult or unique shot was made. Today's featured article, by Bors Vesterby, is titled From Tippy Boat to Gallery Piece. In it Bors describes how he shot what ended up as a gallery sized pano of an alligator, taken while on a trip to Northern Australia. Oh yes, he was shooting hand-held from a small boat.

    

 "Every time I go back to a module I had already seen, I learn additional things.  I have never seen tutorials that have the excellent mix of what the features are, 
how to use them, enough of the under-the-hood information 
and concepts so that I can utilize the features creatively and efficiently, 
and just enough humor to keep the motivation
level high.  Wow!"

 




1 September, 2012 - Misc. Items

Firstly - my best wishes for a safe and enjoyable Labour Day (end of summer) weekend.

We have two new advertisers as of today – PODAS is one; Phase One's unique series of photography workshops that are held around the world. As you likely know I sometimes am an instructor for PODAS workshops, my next one being an adventure cruise in Western Australia next summer. (Almost sold-out).

The second new advertiser is YES Watch, a company that designs watches specifically for photographers and cinematographers who need to know the exact timing – here today, or any date anywhere in the world, for sunrise, sunset, moonrise, moonset and more. I have one, and reviewed it on these pages a few years ago, and still wear it regularly. Cool product.

Adobe has announced that a number of their image editing products will be enhanced to handle Apple's Retina display. Great news.

I am working on my Sigma DP2 Merrill review and hope to publish it here early next week. You are in for quite a surprise.

Fred Miranda has just published one of the first reviews of the Canon 1D-X.




4 September, 2012 - Medium Format Image Quality from a sub-$1k Compact?

Is the headline above hyperbole, or am I just laying out some troll bait? Neither actually. That's why I put a question mark after it.

The new Sigma DP2 Merrill is destined to be one of the most polarizing cameras in a while. It is not without its flaws (none terribly serious if IQ is your primary need), but it also produces some of the highest resolution images that I've seen short of a top-of-the-line DSLR with a 1st rate prime lens attached, or from a medium format back.

What have I been smoking? Read my Sigma DP2 Merrill review and find out.

     

 "Every time I go back to a module I had already seen, I learn additional things.  I have never seen tutorials that have the excellent mix of what the features are, 
how to use them, enough of the under-the-hood information 
and concepts so that I can utilize the features creatively and efficiently, 
and just enough humor to keep the motivation
 level high.  Wow!"




6 September, 2012 - No Brain Numbing Announcements

It's a Photokina year. Every second September the world's photographic industry gathers in Cologne, Germany to announce and demonstrate its new wares – more new products in one month that at any other time in the preceeding 24 months. Some are important in the grand scheme of things, others less so.

My policy on this site has always been not to do new product announcements unless they actually involve a hands-on preview or review. There are a dozen or more web sites that do a fine job of reproducing press releases, so no loss there.

I won't be able to attend Photokina myself this year, but will have two intrepid reporters filing exclusive stories from the show floor once it opens. Again, not a stream of ho-humm PR flack announcements, but stories and insights into what some of the more interesting new products are all about, and what they might mean for photographers. Stay tuned.

 

     

"You and Jeff did it again!  A great series of videos.

I've watched the earlier Camera to Print series as well as the LR 2 & 3 videos and as usual, I learned 
new technique and ideas even though I've been behind a camera for 45 years.

Additionally, the rapport you two have is most engaging, enjoyable, and totally different than the sterile video tutorials from others (I'm afflicted with being a visual learner). 

Again, a great series of videos that have helped me grow once again."

 

 




7 September, 2012 - Epson 4900 Printer Accessories

Sometimes how you accessorize a piece of equipment is as important as the gear itself. But a printer? Well – covers and tables can be important, as Mark Segal helps us appreciate in Accessozing the Epson 4900.

     

 "Every time I go back to a module I had already seen, I learn additional things.  I have never seen tutorials that have the excellent mix of what the features are, 
how to use them, enough of the under-the-hood information 
and concepts so that I can utilize the features creatively and efficiently, 
and just enough humor to keep the motivation
 level high.  Wow!"

 




10 September, 2012 - Using Colour Harmonies. Part 1 of 9.

Back in 2001 I wrote an essay on Colour Theory which has proven to be very popular over the years. Today, our regular columinist Alain Briot begins a new nine-part series on a critical aspect of colour theory, Colour Harmonies. Watch for the whole series over the months head.

     

"You and Jeff did it again!  A great series of videos.

I've watched the earlier Camera to Print series as well as the LR 2 & 3 videos and as usual, I learned 
new technique and ideas even though I've been behind a camera for 45 years.

Additionally, the rapport you two have is most engaging, enjoyable, and totally different than the sterile video tutorials from others (I'm afflicted with being a visual learner). 

Again, a great series of videos that have helped me grow once again."


 




14 September, 2012 - Full Frame Wars, Part Deux

Two new moderately priced 24 Megapixel full frame cameras were launched in the past 48 hours by both Sony and Nikon. Rather then tell you about their details (any site can do that, right?) I'll try and tell you what they mean – in Full Frame Wars, Part Deux.

 

     

 "Every time I go back to a module I had already seen, I learn additional things.  I have never seen tutorials that have the excellent mix of what the features are, 
how to use them, enough of the under-the-hood information 
and concepts so that I can utilize the features creatively and efficiently, 
and just enough humor to keep the motivation
 level high.  Wow!"

 




16 September, 2012 - The Weakest Link in Printing

John Pannozzo is the President of ColorByte Software, one of the leading makers of printing RIPS. John is a friend, and we have known each other for many years and taught together at seminars. He is also one of the most knowledge people on the industry about inkjet printing. Oh yes – Colorbyte is also an advertiser on this site.

So, with that out of the way I invite you to read a new essay by John titled The Weakest Link. If you're a printer, I'm sure you'll find it fascinating.

 

     

"You and Jeff did it again!  A great series of videos.

I've watched the earlier Camera to Print series as well as the LR 2 & 3 videos and as usual, I learned 
new technique and ideas even though I've been behind a camera for 45 years.

Additionally, the rapport you two have is most engaging, enjoyable, and totally different than the sterile video tutorials from others (I'm afflicted with being a visual learner). 

Again, a great series of videos that have helped me grow once again."

 

 




17 September, 2012 - Photokina Week & Phase One First Look

This is Photokina week, in case you hadn't noticed; a once every two years trade show for the world's photographic industry. It officially opens Tuesday in Cologne, Germany, but today will see many major new product announcements.

For reasons of health I will not be at Photokina myself this time, but we have two reporters, Nick Devlin and William Ronald who will be filing regular reports. You'll find links to these and regular update notices on the site's Home Page as they appear.

Please be aware that unlike the big camera web sites we do not publish press releases. There are enough of those around. We will though give you our impressions of what we see (as well as what I am and have been testing here back home) as the week progresses.

I would like to make a particular mention though of the just-announced Canon 6D, that company's new 20 Megapixel full frame camera with a US list reportedly of $2,100, matching Nikon's D600 in terms of price, at least.

Last week I kidded Canon about Not Getting The Memo. Looks like they did finally get it, and that they decided to go for market share over margins after all.


 

UPDATE:

I had an opportunity to work with some new Phase One gear last week, a camera and two new Schneider LS lenses that were announced at Phase One's Photokina dealer meeting late today. Here is my First Impressions Report.

 

 




18 September, 2012 - Photokina Report - Leica Throws a Party

Leica threw a huge party and press reception last night, just before the doors to Photokina open. Nick Devlin and Edmund Ronald were there and provide us with their first Photokina show coverage.

Last updated – 22:00 hrs GMT, Sept. 17. 

 

     

 "Every time I go back to a module I had already seen, I learn additional things.  I have never seen tutorials that have the excellent mix of what the features are, 
how to use them, enough of the under-the-hood information 
and concepts so that I can utilize the features creatively and efficiently, 
and just enough humor to keep the motivation
 level high.  Wow!"

 




18 September, 2012 - Hasselblad's NEX Step

Laugh or cry, Hasselblad has just announced that it will OEM Sony NEX cameras and enhance them, writing..."...for the first time ever we are using carbon fiber, titanium, wood, leather and precious metals - including gold."

You can read about my thoughts on this here.


Nick Devlin has now added his thoughts and observations on the Hasselblad Lunar direct from the show floor.

Last updated 15:30 hrs GMT.

      

"You and Jeff did it again!  A great series of videos.

I've watched the earlier Camera to Print series as well as the LR 2 & 3 videos and as usual, I learned 
new technique and ideas even though I've been behind a camera for 45 years.

Additionally, the rapport you two have is most engaging, enjoyable, and totally different than the sterile video tutorials from others (I'm afflicted with being a visual learner). 

Again, a great series of videos that have helped me grow once again." 

 




19 September, 2012 - Zeiss' Resurgence, and More

Nick Devlin has updated our ongoing Photokina show coverage with a look at Zeiss and how they're staging a huge resurgance. Edmund Ronald also lets us know what he thinks of what Hasselblad is up to.

Sean Reid at ReidReviews (a subscription-based site) has just published a report from Cologne on the new Leica M.

Last updated 23:00 hrs, GMT, 18 Sept.




20 September, 2012 - Two New Photokina Reports: Fuji & Canon

Nick Devlin had a busy day on Wednesday at Photokina, including visits with Fuji and Canon. His detailed write-up, including a slide show of the Canon booth, is now online.

     

 "Every time I go back to a module I had already seen, I learn additional things.  I have never seen tutorials that have the excellent mix of what the features are, 
how to use them, enough of the under-the-hood information 
and concepts so that I can utilize the features creatively and efficiently, 
and just enough humor to keep the motivation
 level high.  Wow!"




20 September - Nikon D600 First Impressions + More Photokina Reports

In a move bound to please Nikon affecionados that company has gone from product announcement to shipping in less than about three weeks. Now that's good marketing. Also beats the forthcoming competition from Canon and Sony to retail by anywhere from two to three months.

I spent last week working with a production Nikon D600 and my First Impressions Report is now online. It's quite a camera and quite a strong value.


Nick Devlin continues his wandering the halls at Photokina and this morning gives us a video interview with a small speciality large format camera maker Shenhoa.

       

"You and Jeff did it again!  A great series of videos.

I've watched the earlier Camera to Print series as well as the LR 2 & 3 videos and as usual, I learned 
new technique and ideas even though I've been behind a camera for 45 years.

Additionally, the rapport you two have is most engaging, enjoyable, and totally different than the sterile video tutorials from others (I'm afflicted with being a visual learner). 

Again, a great series of videos that have helped me grow once again." 

 



21 September, 2012 - Alpa & Fotoman Updates from Photokina

Nick Devlin spent Thursday at Photokina interviewing Alpa and Fotoman. Alpa's 12FPS looks like a killer product.  

Photokina Show Coverage 




21 September, 2012 - New Lightroom 4 Tutorial Videos

Adobe today announced the release of a DNG FlatField plugin for Lightroom 4. This allows for lens cast correction.

We can now release new videos with Eric Chan & Jeff Schewe on the additional features of Lightroom 4.1 and 4.2.

Eric is Principal Scientist at Adobe and responsible for many of the new features of Lightroom 4 and Process 2012.

Three of these videos are available at no extra charge in the existing Advanced Tutorial for Lightroom 4 in zip files 31 & 32. Check out the new Table of Contents v.8

There is also a new add-on tutorial:

The Luminous Landscape Guide to Lightroom 4.x - Update with Eric Chan & Jeff Schewe

Now available in our Store for $9.95

This new tutorial features over two hours of content on

- The DNG Flat Field Plugin
- Chromatic Aberration & Defringe
- High Dynamic Range in 32 bit floating point
- A 1 hour+ Interview with Eric Chan


UPDATE: 16:00 hrs: 21 Sept.

More reports and video by Nick Devlin from the show floor at Photokina.

 

 




23 September, 2012 - Final Photokina Report

Photokina closed Saturday and our intrepid reporter, Nick Devlin has filed his final report, looking at offerings from Sony, Pentax and Panasonic among others.

Final Photokina Show Coverage 

 "Every time I go back to a module I had already seen, I learn additional things.  I have never seen tutorials that have the excellent mix of what the features are, 
how to use them, enough of the under-the-hood information 
and concepts so that I can utilize the features creatively and efficiently, 
and just enough humor to keep the motivation
 level high.  Wow!"

 




25 September, 2012 - Sigma DP1 Merrill Review & Open Letter to Sigma's CEO

When I started working with the Sigma DP2 Merrill I was floored by the image quality. It's a quirky camera that needs patience to use, but rewards with sensor and lens quality unmatched in the industry for its price and size.

It's sister camera, the DP1 Merrill, with an effective 28mm focal length lens, started to ship recently and I was very curious to learn if it could match the optical quality of its older sibling. My review is now online.

As remarkable as these cameras are when it comes to image quality, sadly Sigma's raw software is truely horrid. But, it's the only game in town unless and until Sigma starts working with the major software companies or adopts DNG export.

I have therefore written an open letter of concern to Sigma's CEO which is also part of my SD1M review.

        

"You and Jeff did it again!  A great series of videos.

I've watched the earlier Camera to Print series as well as the LR 2 & 3 videos and as usual, I learned 
new technique and ideas even though I've been behind a camera for 45 years.

Additionally, the rapport you two have is most engaging, enjoyable, and totally different than the sterile video tutorials from others (I'm afflicted with being a visual learner). 

Again, a great series of videos that have helped me grow once again." 

 

 




28 September, 2012 - I Said I Wouldn't Do It Again - But I Am!

Sorry – After just 24 hours the waitlist is now 4X over-subscribed,
and so we're not adding new names at the moment.

After leading my third photographic expedition to Antarctica I said publicly that I was done.  But what I didn't say was the reason why.

I love Antarctica. It's as close to visiting another planet as is possible. It's a life changing experience that only a very small number of people get to do, and a photographic challenge unlike any other.

But after six rough crossings sailing across the Drake Passage, the roughest ocean in the world, is not something I care to do again. Two and a half days of lying in my bunk drugged with anti-nausea pills is not only a rite of passage, but also just not worth it. For me anyhow.

But now there'a an alternative. There is a company that flys us from Chile directly to an Antarctic base, and to our ship. The flight takes 2 hours in a modern 4 engine commercial jet, instead of two and half stomach churning days at sea. 

So – In late January 2014, just 14 months from now I will be leading my fourth photographic expedition to Antarctica. I'm not ready to annnounce details yet, or take reservations. That'll come a couple of weeks from now. But since my last three expeditions sold out in a matter of days, I want to allow people a chance to get in place before the official announcement.

If you think you want to join this one week expedition to Antarctica (aboard a fantastic ship, one which I chartered for my last trip), with eveything included and some of the world's best photographic instructors, all you have to do is send me an email. I'll put your name on a waitlist and you will be given priority notification of the opening of booking. No obligation at this point.

Sorry – After just 24 hours the waitlist is now 4X over-subscribed,
and so we're not adding new names at the moment.

  

 "Every time I go back to a module I had already seen, I learn additional things.  I have never seen tutorials that have the excellent mix of what the features are, 
how to use them, enough of the under-the-hood information 
and concepts so that I can utilize the features creatively and efficiently, 
and just enough humor to keep the motivation
 level high.  Wow!"




30 September, 2012 - The Digital Negative Book

Jeff Schewe has just published an important new book titled The Digital Negative. I have created a brief review (more like a plug) for my friend's book. But, my bias aside, it really is that good, and it should find its way to your bookshelf tout suite.


Sony A99

I have started field testing the brand new Sony A99 full-frame 24MP camera. I will be shooting with it in Algonquin Park next week, and expect to have my review available some time the week after.

 

 "Every time I go back to a module I had already seen, I learn additional things.  I have never seen tutorials that have the excellent mix of what the features are, 
how to use them, enough of the under-the-hood information 
and concepts so that I can utilize the features creatively and efficiently, 
and just enough humor to keep the motivation
 level high.  Wow!"

 




4 October, 2012 - Using Color Harmonies in Photography

Our regular columnist Alain Briot continues with his tutorial series on Using Color Harmonies in Photography with an essay on Complimentary Color Harmony.

  

 "Every time I go back to a module I had already seen, I learn additional things.  I have never seen tutorials that have the excellent mix of what the features are, 
how to use them, enough of the under-the-hood information 
and concepts so that I can utilize the features creatively and efficiently, 
and just enough humor to keep the motivation
 level high.  Wow!"




8 October, 2012 - Sony Alpha A99 Field Test Report

This year the peak of Fall colour in Algonquin Park coincided with the arrival of a production Sony Alpha A99 camera for testing. I was able to spend several days working with the A99 in a range of weather and light conditions, along with a wide selection of Zeiss and G series lenses.

My field test report is now online.

         

"You and Jeff did it again!  A great series of videos.

I've watched the earlier Camera to Print series as well as the LR 2 & 3 videos and as usual, I learned 
new technique and ideas even though I've been behind a camera for 45 years.

Additionally, the rapport you two have is most engaging, enjoyable, and totally different than the sterile video tutorials from others (I'm afflicted with being a visual learner). 

Again, a great series of videos that have helped me grow once again." 




12 October, 2012 - The Needles District - The Road Less Travelled

Miles Hecker's Geotagged travel article for this month is titled The Road Less Traveled – The Needles Distrct. Been there, hope to go back.

Observant Home Page viewers will note that the new front page image was taken with the as-yet unreleased Panasonic Lumix GH3. I have been shooting with a press review sample and will continue for the next ten days or so. This is a pre-production camera, so it has it foibles. But so far I am extreemly impressed with the build, handling, and especially image quality, both stills and video. This may be the best hybrid camera yet.

 

  

 "Every time I go back to a module I had already seen, I learn additional things.  I have never seen tutorials that have the excellent mix of what the features are, 
how to use them, enough of the under-the-hood information 
and concepts so that I can utilize the features creatively and efficiently, 
and just enough humor to keep the motivation
 level high.  Wow!"

 




15 October, 2012 - Multistitch Review

Richard Sexton reviews Multistitch, a new product designed to allow medium format back users to create stitched images with 4X5 cameras.

 

  

 "Every time I go back to a module I had already seen, I learn additional things.  I have never seen tutorials that have the excellent mix of what the features are, 
how to use them, enough of the under-the-hood information 
and concepts so that I can utilize the features creatively and efficiently, 
and just enough humor to keep the motivation
 level high.  Wow!"

 




21 October, 2012 - Fuji X-E1 Review

Fuji continues on a roll with a new entry in its exciting X series of cameras, the X-E1 which Nick Devlin has been working with and testing for the past little while.

Nick's review is now online.

         

"You and Jeff did it again!  A great series of videos.

I've watched the earlier Camera to Print series as well as the LR 2 & 3 videos and as usual, I learned 
new technique and ideas even though I've been behind a camera for 45 years.

Additionally, the rapport you two have is most engaging, enjoyable, and totally different than the sterile video tutorials from others (I'm afflicted with being a visual learner). 

Again, a great series of videos that have helped me grow once again." 

 




26 October, 2012 - Panasonic GH3 Prelim Field Report

It's been two years to the month since I first reviewed the Panasonic GH2. Now it's the GH3's turn. This exciting new camera builds on the features and success of its predecessor. My premininary field report is now online.

  

 "Every time I go back to a module I had already seen, I learn additional things.  I have never seen tutorials that have the excellent mix of what the features are, 
how to use them, enough of the under-the-hood information 
and concepts so that I can utilize the features creatively and efficiently, 
and just enough humor to keep the motivation
 level high.  Wow!"




29 October, 2012 - JLM / Sigma DP1/2 Merrill Grip and Updates

There are a number of individuals who are CNC machinists as well as photographic enthusiast. John Milich is one such, and he has recently made available a terrific L bracket and grip for the Sigma DP1/2 Merrill cameras. I report on this here, and also provide links to new firmware for both cameras and also a much needed update to Sigma Photo Pro that just were released.

         

 

"Yes I downloaded the videos. THEY ARE AWESOME!!! I learned so much I think my brain is going to explode.

 

Now I need to get the LR4 video to see how much of Lightroom 4 I don’t know".

 




1 November, 2012 - A Gripping Tale

Yes, another short article about grips for small cameras. Sometimes it's the little things that count.

But the big news is that I will be opening my January 2014 Antarctic Expedition to public registration beginning on Saturday. Watch for the announcement.

  

 "Every time I go back to a module I had already seen, I learn additional things.  I have never seen tutorials that have the excellent mix of what the features are, 
how to use them, enough of the under-the-hood information 
and concepts so that I can utilize the features creatively and efficiently, 
and just enough humor to keep the motivation
 level high.  Wow!"




2 November, 2012 - Two Shows Worth Seeing

Photographer Steve Levinson's new show Outer Beauty opens at the ARTA Gallery in Toronto's Distillery District (14 Distillery Lane). November 7 - November 20, 2012.

The official opening reception - Friday, November 9, 2012 from 5:00 PM to 9:00 PM.


HBO will be broadcasting a four-part documentary series from award-winning filmmaker Michael Mann. Witness debuts this Monday, November 5th at 9:00p.m.ET/PT with Witness: Juarez. The film follows combat photographer Eros Hoagland as he explores Juarez, Mexico, the "murder capital of the world" where drug violence has left over 10,000 dead.

Presented in four parts – JuarezLibyaSouth Sudan and Rio – Witness focuses on three determined photojournalists: Eros Hoagland, who explores the gang- and drug-related violence in both Juarez, Mexico and Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; Michael Christopher Brown, who chronicles escalating ethnic tensions in the wake of Muammar Gaddafi’s ouster last year in Libya; and Véronique de Viguerie, who follows the “Arrow Boys” and their struggle against General Kony in South Sudan.

 

         

"Yes I downloaded the videos. THEY ARE AWESOME!!! I learned so much I think my brain is going to explode.

 

Now I need to get the LR4 video to see how much of Lightroom 4 I don’t know".

 




3 November, 2012 - Antarctica 2014 by Air

UPDATE

On Friday evening I posted a promotion for an Antarctic Workshop in January, 2014. The response has been so overwhelming over the past 36 hours that I believe that when the booking office re-opens on Monday morning the trip may well be sold out.

I have therefore closed accepting information and booking form requests. If there are any spaces left in a few days I'll repost here.

Sorry to disappoint.




6 November, 2012 - Gura Gear Bataflae Review

A camera bag is a camera bag – right? Well, actually, no. A good bag or backpack can make the difference between getting your gear to and around a location, comfortably and safely, or not.

Today, Nick Devlin gives us his review of the new Bataflae backpack from Gura Gear.


Antarctica by Air, January 2014 Update

As of Monday evening everyone who sent in their booking form has been registered by Antarctica XXI. If you have not heard back from them (not me) then you need to chase them down because that means that they did not receive your booking form and you do not yet have a berth.

If there are any spaces left I will re-open bookings on Wednesday. 

  

 "Every time I go back to a module I had already seen, I learn additional things.  I have never seen tutorials that have the excellent mix of what the features are, 
how to use them, enough of the under-the-hood information 
and concepts so that I can utilize the features creatively and efficiently, 

and just enough humor to keep the motivation level high.  Wow!" 

 




7 October, 2012 - Antartica by Air - A Few Berths Available

Sorry – but the January, 2014 Antarctica by Air Expediton now appears to be sold out.




12 November, 2012 - Colour Harmonies - Part #3 and #4

Our regular columnist, Alain Briot, continues his new nine part essay series with Installments #3 and #4 of Colour Harmonies.

 

         

"Yes I downloaded the videos. THEY ARE AWESOME!!! I learned so much I think my brain is going to explode.

 

Now I need to get the LR4 video to see how much of Lightroom 4 I don’t know".


 




17 November, 2012 - Atomos Ninja 2 Review

External video recorders are about more than improved image quality. Find out more in my review of the least expensive model that includes a monitor, the Atomos Ninja 2.


Sean Reid, at ReidReviews, does some of the most in-depth camera reviews of anyone online or in print. He has just published his look at the remarkable Sigma DP2 Merrill, which I raved about here a couple of months ago. If you're considering one of these Sean's review is compulsary reading. ReidReviews is a subscription site.

 

  

 "Every time I go back to a module I had already seen, I learn additional things.  I have never seen tutorials that have the excellent mix of what the features are, 
how to use them, enough of the under-the-hood information 
and concepts so that I can utilize the features creatively and efficiently, 
and just enough humor to keep the motivation level high.  Wow!" 

 

 




20 November, 2012 - Great Holiday Sale

It's here. Our -25% sale. Oh yes, and the holidays are almost here as well.

Everything in our online store that isn't already on sale is now -25% off until New Years. 

Happy Holidays! 




22 November, 2012 - Steptoe Butte - Above The Palouse

As part of his on-going Geotagged Photo Location series, our regular contributor Miles Hecker provides us today with advise on shooting at Steptoe Butte – The Top of the Palouse.

To all our friends in the USA who today are celebrating Thanksgiving, please accept our best wishes for safe travels and warm family times.

 Happy Holidays! 

 




26 November, 2012 - Sony 10-18mm f/4 E Lens Review

One of the weak areas in Sony's NEX camera line-up, both stills and video, has been the need for a high quality wide-angle zoom.

The Sony 10-18mm f/4 E has recently started shipping, and it turns out to be a pretty terrific optic, greatly addding to the overall versatility of the NEX system.

Mark Segal's field review is now online. 

Readers will recall our announcement of Mark Segal's ebook on scanning. LaserSoft Imaging has now published Mark's new Up-date Appendix freely available to the public here , which describes the operation of features added to SilverFast 8 since the book was published. You'll even learn how to create "woodblock print" effects in the scanning software!

 Happy Holidays! 

 




28 November, 2012 - A Few Antarctica Spaces

My January, 2014 Antarctica by Air Expediton sold out almost immediately when announced last month, but a few people who said they were joining have not paid their deposits, so their berths are now forfeit.

There is an opening for one male in a double cabin as well as one female in a shared cabin. There is also a double cabin available for either a couple or two individuals.

UPDATE: Sorry – Sold Out




30 November, 2012 - Video Journal #20 Now Available

It may be a bit late in coming, but Luminous Landscape Video Journal #20 is now ready for download.

This issue contains a visit and interview with preeminent photographer Art Wolfe, and a look at not only his work but also his gallery and home.

One of the few people to attempt the incredibly time consuming, exacting and expensive Carbon Pigment printing process is Mark Dubovoy. Issue #20 features an interview with Mark and a look at some of his original prints.

The travel segment this issue is on China, with a shoot along the Li River and in the incredible Yellow Mountains being featured.

 




3 December, 2012 - Cycling the World as a Photographer

Exploring the remote regions of the world can be a trip – literally. But what kind of trip very much depends on your mode of local transportation.

In today's new article, Cycling The Worlds as a Photographer, Nicholas Marino discusses the why and the how.

Happy Holidays! 




6 December, 2012 - Upcoming Reviews

This is a quick heads-up on some reviews that are planned for publication. First, we have the world's first review of the Alpa 12 FPS, by Mark Dubovoy. This will appear in the next few days, accompanied by a 13 minute video report done by Mark and California-based Alpa dealer Jim Taskett of Bear Images.

Coming in the weeks ahead is a review of the Canon SX50, which may well be the best Superzoom yet; certainly it has the longest zoom range available, at 50X, from 24 – 1,200mm equivalent.

I'll be reporting as well on the upcoming Sony SEL PX 18-200mm lens, the first servo zoom lens for E-mount – and yes, it will work on the FS700, and also on Sony's NEX stills cameras, since it has its own built-in zoom control in the event that your stills or video camera doesn't have a built-in rocker switch, as do the new Sony EA-50 and FS700 camcorders.

Also in the lens department I will be reviewing the SLR Magic Hyperprime 50mm f/0.95 lens in E-mount. The same lens is also available in MFT mount, and a somewhat different (and much more expensive version) in Leica M mount.

Finally, and likely not till I have had some weeks to really put it through its paces, is the Sony RX1, the world's first (large) pocket sized full-frame 24MP camera, with a built in Zeiss 35mm f/2 lens. I believe that this will be a significant camera, and likely to be something of a milestone, so I'm not going to rush this review. Look for it in January.

 

 




9 December, 2012 - Alpa 12 FPS Review

Alpa are well known in the medium format world as occupying the pinnacle of engineering excellence. With the Alpa 12 FPS (Focal Plane Shutter) they have created an accessory that fits virtually any Alpa 12 technical camera and which allows a huge variety of legacy lenses to be adapted.

Mark Dubovoy and Alpa dealer Jim Taskett of Bear Images in California have been testing a pre-production FPS unit and provide us with Mark's exclusive review, and their joint 13 minute-long video tour of this exciting new product.

Happy Holidays! 

 




11 December, 2012 - What We See and How We Photograph It

The science of human vision and photographic optics have always fascinated. Today, Charles S. Johnson Jr. provides us with an exclusive essay titled What We See, And How We Photograph It. I hope that you enjoy reading it as much as I have. 

Kevin Raber has written to say that he has just completed the latest PODAS workshop, this time in New Zealand. Looks like everyone had a great time. Kevin's PODAS Blog is found here.

I will be one of the instructors on Phase One's Western Australia PODAS this June, and can hardly wait.

Many of you who knew I was unwell over the past six month have written with your best wishes, and I want you to know how much that has meant to me.

I have updated On a Personal Note, just to say that I have been out of chemo for a few weeks now and am regaining my strength. We're off to our place in Mexico soon and greatly looking forward to the warmth and charm of living in San Miguel once again.




15 December, 2012 - DxOMark Camera Sensor Explained

One of the most quoted camera metrics these days is DxOMark Camera Sensor, a number and indeed a series of numbers for quantifying camera sensor performance. But many people don't really understand what the numbers signify.

With his second essay on the subject to appear on this site Peter van den Hamer gives us an in-depth look at how to interpret what DxOMark Camera Sensor means.

Happy Holidays! 




20 December, 2012 - Sony RX1 Review

Every now and then a camera comes along that both delights and amazes. More often than not such creatures are very expensive. Such a camera is the Sony RX1.

I have now been working for a while with the RX1 in both Toronto and San Miguel, and have just published my review.

 

 




22 December, 2012 - Nick Defends the Sigma DP2M on Youtube

Few technologies over the years have raised as much passion, pro and con, as Foveon sensors. Regular readers will know that I have (slowly) become a fan of the latest generation of Merrill sensors in the DP2M and DP1M Sigma cameras.

A few of my friends, including our regular contributor Nick Devlin, were knocked out by the image quality that these cameras are capable of (if not their actual cameraness) and bought a DP2M as soon as they saw large prints with their own eyes.

Now, Nick, on a recent trip to his native Calgary, Alberta, has joined Chris Niccolls of The Camera Store in producing a video report on their experiences shooting with these two Sigmas.

Keep your sense of humour, and enjoy.


Canon SX50 Bargain

I have been testing and shooting with the new Canon SX50 Superzoom for the past few weeks. My review will appear here in a week or so. I am mentioning it today because as I will be reporting soon, in my opinion this is the best Superzoom yet. A number of retailers are currently heavily discounting the SX50 between now and year's end. I've seen U.S. prices this week as low as $369, which if you're in the market for a camera with very decent image quality and a 24mm – 1,200mm lens is a hell of a bargain.


Happy Holidays! 

 




24 December, 2012 - The Synthesis of Chinese Landscape Painting and Photography

"Traditional Chinese Landscape Painting has endured for almost 1500 years, longer than any genre in Western culture. What perceptual qualities (that we can see for ourselves) lie behind this? How can we adopt these to the medium of digital photography? Looking at the visual structure of paintings began for us as a way to analyze what makes a an image “work,” and it has grown into a fascination with a very different way of seeing – that of the classical Chinese Landscape painters."

George DeWolfe and Lydia Goetze explore this subject in their new essay The Synthesis of Chinese Landscape Painting and Photography. 

 




26 December, 2012 - Our Holiday Sale Ends Next Week

All good things must come to an end, including our year-end sale. Want to purchase any of our tutorials or Video Journals? Want to save 25%?

If you wait till next week you just might wait too long. 

25% Off Sale
ends Tuesday night




27 December, 2012 � Cusco Peru Geotagged

Miles Hecker's last Geotagged Photo Location for the year is Cusco, Peru.

 

25% Off Sale 
ends Tuesday night

 




29 December, 2012 - The Best and Worst of 2012

Nobody is perfect, and certainly not camera makers. So who blew it this past year, and who deserves our kudos?

You'll find my own totally biased opinions in The Best and Worst of 2012.

25% Off Sale 
ends Tuesday night




Return to the What's New archives page.


Go to the current What's New page.