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Author Topic: LLVJ-19  (Read 18604 times)
DarkPenguin
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« Reply #40 on: December 17, 2009, 11:50:30 PM »
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Quote from: ErikKaffehr
Hi,

Those videos from Namibia are a couple years old. Michael ditched both the Hasselblad and the Canon meanwhile, for Phase One and Sony it seems.

Those videos are about Namibia and I guess that the country is still the same.

Best regards
Erik
I forgot about that until the lens fell apart on him.  I remember that being mentioned some time ago.
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ErikKaffehr
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« Reply #41 on: December 17, 2009, 11:52:43 PM »
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Hi,

I have feeling that Michael is a bit of gadget freak, so he sometimes is a bit overenthusiastic about some piece of equipment. Please note that he used the laptop on the hood of his car and not on his long walk in the forest.

As we have considerable freedom with manipulating color in Lightroom it may be an advantage to get the colors right before we start manipulating them. He could of course just shoot CCPP at the scene and processed it at home.

Best regards
Erik


Quote from: jenbenn
I do agree with you that a point of reference is valuable. I just dont get why one would take a light and compact Leica on a landscape shoot only to burden oneself with a laptop to check color accuracy on site. Anyways, I was just being provocative because I thought that the last chapter sounded too much like an advertisment, rather than a good technical review.
« Last Edit: December 18, 2009, 12:08:13 AM by ErikKaffehr » Logged

ckimmerle
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« Reply #42 on: December 18, 2009, 01:41:39 PM »
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Quote from: Schewe
(just wondering, if I'm an ass, what does that make you? Hey, just asking...inquiring minds want to know :~)


You seem quite sensitive for someone who likes to, on a regular basis, denigrate and insult others.
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"The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeing new landscapes, but in having new eyes." Marcel Proust

Chuck Kimmerle
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« Reply #43 on: December 18, 2009, 02:23:06 PM »
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Quote from: ckimmerle
You seem quite sensitive for someone who likes to, on a regular basis, denigrate and insult others.

Yeah, I'm a withering wall flower all right...

Whatever...

But I notice you didn't bother answering my question. It wasn't a rhetorical question.
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ckimmerle
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« Reply #44 on: December 18, 2009, 04:48:26 PM »
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Quote from: Schewe
But I notice you didn't bother answering my question. It wasn't a rhetorical question.

Live with it.
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"The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeing new landscapes, but in having new eyes." Marcel Proust

Chuck Kimmerle
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« Reply #45 on: December 18, 2009, 04:52:44 PM »
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Quote from: ckimmerle
Are you this much of an ass in person, or just online?


LOL.  that is funny.

But I met him in Boston,&

he just make people to enjoy their self and learn something,

so enjoy while you can, this year is almost gone for good.

getting mad over computer makes absolutely no sense at all.

Merry Christmas
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LeoGraet
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« Reply #46 on: January 29, 2010, 12:05:55 PM »
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Hi!

This is my first post to this forum, although I've read the LL website for a long time.
Let me start by saying that I really like the website! Michael, you and your fellows are doing a great job. Thank you very much!

In the past I always thought that the video journal wasn't worth the money - I just judged that from the short snippets I could see for free. (Man, I was wrong, terribly wrong...)
Then two things occured: I saw the tutorial "From camera to print" at a friend's house and I saw the word "Namibia" in the topic list for the new journal. There are a lot of wonderful places in this country, I've visited it this summer and I'd go back there right now if I had the time and the money!
The tutorial "From camera to print" is just awesome, Jeff is so funny, and the provided information is just lightyears above all "insights" from a lot of other "experts" that are around the worldwideweb.

So I decided to buy the LLVJ 19 and I like it a lot. Even though I haven't had the time to watch every part.

But, ahem, just two things I want to say that I didn't like too much. (Forgive me, I'm German, we tend to criticize just everything...)

1. The "SD" version of the journal is not what most people would call "standard definition video". It only has 360 lines in height, but even wikipedia doesn't mention resolutions below 480 lines for SD video. I understand that you want to sell the HD content... but in my opinion it would be fair either to go above at least 400 - 450 lines or to call it what it is: "640x360" and not "SD"!

2. The sections about Namibia are great. Just one thing I'd like to discuss is the part with the Himba people. I know there are a lot of arguments about "to pay or not to pay" and "to stage or not to stage" when it comes to photographing people and I'd like to add one more: In my opinion you shouldn't have staged the Himbas, I didn't like this part of the video. When I was in Namibia I felt that all the tourists and photographers with their money and their gifts help to destroy the last few communities of these tribes that have been living in peace for hundreds of years. I felt that this was one of a few situations where I didn't want to take any photographs at all when I saw these people on the streets begging for money. You know, it felt like all the photographers around me did this: Elephant - take photo! Leopard - take photo! Himba - take photo! Just like animals :-( I refused to visit one of the Himba villages as a tourist. Instead I gave money to an organsation that supports them with basic healthcare.
Obviously your group (your guide?) has chosen a different approach. A lot of photographers are attracted to do the same and go directly into the Himba villages. This way we are going to destroy what we photograph now. But is this the way we want it?

I hope I've found the right words for my criticism. If some sound wrong, please don't be too harsh with me, because I'm not a native speaker.

Again thank you for your website, Michael, and I hope to visit your gallery some time when I come to Canada again. (Have been to BC in 2006 and loved it.)

Best regards from Germany,
Leo
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Chris Sanderson
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« Reply #47 on: January 29, 2010, 12:35:10 PM »
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Thanks for your comments Leo. I have updated the SD product page of LLVJ-19 to detail the SD video as 640 x 360.
« Last Edit: January 29, 2010, 12:36:09 PM by Chris Sanderson » Logged

Christopher Sanderson
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Jeremy Payne
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« Reply #48 on: January 29, 2010, 12:46:49 PM »
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Quote from: Chris Sanderson
Thanks for your comments Leo. I have updated the SD product page of LLVJ-19 to detail the SD video as 640 x 360.
Chris ... one thing to check out if you are using h264 (I think you are) ... While you CAN encode at 640 x 360, I have heard because of the way h264 works, you are best off using a pixel dimension that is divisible by 16 ...

Like 640 x 352.

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michael
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« Reply #49 on: January 29, 2010, 01:34:14 PM »
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Leo,

Thank you for your comments.

We didn't "give" money to the Himba. We traded. We gave them maize, tobacco and sugar and they gave us their time and hospitality. The Himba are nomadic herders and have to trade to get the few things that they need and want that they can't grow or produce themselves.

They had a camp near our lodge and our guide, who knew the tribe and their language, was comfortable bringing us to them so that we could visit. This is quite a bit different than giving a tip to a street beggar so that you can take their photograph. These are very proud people, and we had a great visit with them, as you can see from the video. Everyone had fun.

What you didn't see much of in the video were the kids, who had a ball driving across the sands dunes in the Land Rovers. A unique experience for them, I'm sure.

Michael
« Last Edit: January 29, 2010, 01:35:51 PM by michael » Logged
LeoGraet
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« Reply #50 on: January 30, 2010, 05:49:43 AM »
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Quote from: michael
Leo,

Thank you for your comments.

We didn't "give" money to the Himba. We traded. We gave them maize, tobacco and sugar and they gave us their time and hospitality. The Himba are nomadic herders and have to trade to get the few things that they need and want that they can't grow or produce themselves.

They had a camp near our lodge and our guide, who knew the tribe and their language, was comfortable bringing us to them so that we could visit. This is quite a bit different than giving a tip to a street beggar so that you can take their photograph. These are very proud people, and we had a great visit with them, as you can see from the video. Everyone had fun.

What you didn't see much of in the video were the kids, who had a ball driving across the sands dunes in the Land Rovers. A unique experience for them, I'm sure.

Michael

Hi Michael,
thank you for taking the time to reply.

I do know quite a lot about the Himbas because I have a German friend who is married to a Himba woman.
He told me that even those "good" tourists who respect the Himba do have a heavy impact on the way they live. More and more tribes give up their nomadic lives to stay in one place (or at least one small area) to make sure the guides and the tourists can easily find them.
I realized from your video that you did everything to respect the Himbas. I also tried to do that when I was in Namibia. But I'm sad to say that I think you've seen a traditional way of living that is going to vanish very soon. Perhaps there is nothing we can do about it.
The tourists and photographers change their way of living just by visiting them. There are already "show-villages" that are completely staged for the tourists, but a lot of tourists say "I want to see a non-staged village" and hire a guide do lead them deep into Kaokoveld... We were told that there are all kinds of villages in between "totally staged" and "completely natural", but the number of the natural ones keeps lowering.

We visited the bushmen called "San" in the eastern part of Namibia (east of Etosha), and went to a completely staged village ("living museum"). The San there were like actors. We had a strange feeling about that. I'm still not sure if I think it's a good thing, although they now can afford health care and clean drinking water for everyone in their village...

We have also been to Katutura ("township", part of Windhoek). I haven't taken any pictures there, I wanted to talk to the people. Have you been there?

The question I ask myself over and over again is this: We have a responsibility for these people we photograph, but how can we act to be responsible and not to destroy their way of living?
I've traveled alot, but I still don't have an answer. (I also think there is more than just one simple finalanswer.)
I think you, Michael, have far more expirience with this than me, perhaps you can write an article about that? (Or do you have it written already and I haven't found it?) Or perhaps you can discuss that with one of your fellow travellers in the next issue of the VJ?

Best regards
Leo
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michael
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« Reply #51 on: January 30, 2010, 08:05:21 AM »
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It's an interesting point and a tough question.

The Himba village we visited was completely natural and unstaged. I doubt that they people there had seen whites or westerners more than a handful of times in their lives.

Here's a moral dilemma for you, which maybe helps illuminate the problem. You visit a village and find a child who is very ill, maybe close to death. You have a strong antibiotic with you which you know can cure the child in a few days. Do you administer it or not?

If you do you save the child. But, what about the next time someone gets sick in the village? They now know that there are solutions.

A few years ago I was in Tanzania. We visited a Masai village which was a complete fraud, with dances and curios for the tourists. I hated it. A disgusting sham. But the next day we were on a mountain hike and we hired some Masai teenagers as porters and guides. They were dressed in traditional garb (this is what they wore everyday) and looked to be from another time.

One of them spoke a bit of English, and after a long climb we took picture on top of the mountain and then asked him if he had any sort of mailing address, so that we could send him a print.

His reply was that they had no postal service, but we could send a JPG to his Hotmail account!!

It seems that he wants to go to university, and once a month he walks some 20km to the nearest village with an internet cafe to check his mail and stay connected to the outside world.

The overall issues are complex and therefore there is no one answer or right answer.

Michael
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LeoGraet
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« Reply #52 on: January 30, 2010, 09:37:20 AM »
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Quote from: michael
[...]
The Himba village we visited was completely natural and unstaged. I doubt that they people there had seen whites or westerners more than a handful of times in their lives.
[...]
A few years ago I was in Tanzania. We visited a Masai village which was a complete fraud, with dances and curios for the tourists. I hated it. A disgusting sham.
[...]
Michael
Michael,
the two parts of the quote show the problem I wanted to point out. The Masai village surely also was natural and unstaged years ago. But then somebody came and staged them to take photographs, and some kind of change began... Perhaps this now starts in the Himba village you've visited, and in a few years...?

I don't know a solution for this problem. Some say that small groups of respectful photographers are the scouts for mass-tourism! As a passionate travel photographer I'm not happy about this, but maybe it's true. Everybody likes to think of themselves as "good tourists" who never does anything to cause something wrong...

Conclusion for me is that I never ever ask people in foreign countries to stage up for a picture, because I think this might push them to turn away from their traditional lives. But that's just me, and the scene in the VJ when your group asked the Himba to walk on the dunes was the kick for me to write my message here on your forum. I wished you'd discuss this topic in an article or in the VJ, so that every follower of your great work can see that there's more about it than just go out and take pictures, but that every photographer is responsible. I think it's good to give people food for thought in these times when everybody walks around with Iphones and DSLRs taking photos of everybody and everything.

You made a good point with your "dilemma". Without health care a lot of children die within their first years (or even months). This is a sad truth for a lot of countries in Africa and the whole world. So the challenge is to provide health care without destroying the traditions. And where do we fit in as photographers? I think we firstly must come to foreign countries as human beings who want to get in contact with people and then secondly come as photographers. For me this sometimes implies to refrain from taking pictures.

Bottom line: Michael, I don't want to accuse you. I'd just like to see this topic deeply discussed when shootings of native people are shown.

Best regards
Leo
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« Reply #53 on: March 20, 2010, 04:52:47 AM »
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Quote from: LeoGraet
Michael,
the two parts of the quote show the problem I wanted to point out. The Masai village surely also was natural and unstaged years ago. But then somebody came and staged them to take photographs, and some kind of change began... Perhaps this now starts in the Himba village you've visited, and in a few years...?

I don't know a solution for this problem. Some say that small groups of respectful photographers are the scouts for mass-tourism! As a passionate travel photographer I'm not happy about this, but maybe it's true. Everybody likes to think of themselves as "good tourists" who never does anything to cause something wrong...

Conclusion for me is that I never ever ask people in foreign countries to stage up for a picture, because I think this might push them to turn away from their traditional lives. But that's just me, and the scene in the VJ when your group asked the Himba to walk on the dunes was the kick for me to write my message here on your forum. I wished you'd discuss this topic in an article or in the VJ, so that every follower of your great work can see that there's more about it than just go out and take pictures, but that every photographer is responsible. I think it's good to give people food for thought in these times when everybody walks around with Iphones and DSLRs taking photos of everybody and everything.

You made a good point with your "dilemma". Without health care a lot of children die within their first years (or even months). This is a sad truth for a lot of countries in Africa and the whole world. So the challenge is to provide health care without destroying the traditions. And where do we fit in as photographers? I think we firstly must come to foreign countries as human beings who want to get in contact with people and then secondly come as photographers. For me this sometimes implies to refrain from taking pictures.

Bottom line: Michael, I don't want to accuse you. I'd just like to see this topic deeply discussed when shootings of native people are shown.

Best regards
Leo
Leo, Michael,

A qoute made many many years ago during a television series (in the netherlands) on microscopes, i never forgot since: "once you observe a system, you influence that system". I believe that this in essence is the dilemma, and in the example of Michael strongly amplified, but nevertheless true in any situation where we "observe" by looking and then taking pictures, although in most cases may be not as dramatic as the masai village example.


Jan R. Smit

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