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1 January, 2010 - Happy New Year

I am currently on a vacation / shoot in Spain (The Canary Islands) until mid-January, with limited internet access. Updates and new articles will therefore appear here only intermittently over the next couple of weeks.

In the meantime, our best wishes to all readers for a healthy and prosperous 2010.




2 January, 2010 - A Tale of Two Papers

Most would agree that this is the Golden Age of printing papers. We have more types of papers than ever in history and most are quite excellent. A few  – not so much!

The first article of this new year is titled A Tale of Two Papers. In it I review two brand new papers, both just becoming available this month  – Canson Infinity Baryta Photographique and Hahnemuhle Baryta FB.

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"Video Journal 19, one of the best. Interesting and relevant topics, knowledgeable engaging guests, and a host that gently guides the conversation through terrain I want to explore. And more, it's beautifully shot in a clean, no tricks style that keeps the conversation in focus. Well done all! This one is worth twice the price".

– paul b. kramarchyk

Watch Free Video Previews of Each
Major Feature in This Issue




4 January, 2010 - Using QuadTone RIP (PC version) to Create Digital Negatives

There is a lot of interest among photographers exploring traditional as well as historic chemical printing processes in producing digital negatives.

Tim Gray,  who does Platinum printing and who reported on this here last year, now provides us with a tutorial on Using QuadTone RIP (PC version) to Create Digital Negatives.

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If you wern't too deep in your cups early on New Years eve you may have noticed that there was a full moon. From the deck of our rental house on the island of Gomera we watched a remarkable moonrise behind a massive cliff, with wind-raked clouds racing by. My last photograph (literally) of 2009 is now on the site's Home Page.

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8 January, 2010 - Thoughts on Ansel

Ansel Adams is an ikon for some, and an inspiration for others. Many people studied with him, either directly through his seminars, indirectly through his seminal training books, or simply though a close study and appreciation of his work.

Our newest columnist, the very fine photographer and teacher William Neill, had the good fortune of working with Ansel, and in his first column for us shares some thoughts on this best known of 20th Century photographers.

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"Video Journal 19, one of the best. Interesting and relevant topics, knowledgeable engaging guests, and a host that gently guides the conversation through terrain I want to explore. And more, it's beautifully shot in a clean, no tricks style that keeps the conversation in focus. Well done all! This one is worth twice the price".

– paul b. kramarchyk

Watch Free Video Previews of Each
Major Feature in This Issue




12 January, 2010 - Heresy - Handholding the Tilt / Shift Lens

Can one effectively hand hold a T/S lens? Common wisdom says not, but in a tutorial by Rob Porter, titled Heresy, we find out how.

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I have now begun my long treck back from La Gomera in the Canary Islands to Toronto. It's going to take two full days, first via a ferry to Tenerife, then planes to Madrid, then Newark, and finally Toronto.

I hear that there's snow at home, and a lot of it. Also that much of Europe has been blanketed.

Coming from two weeks in what may be the world's most benign climate it's hard to imagine it, but I guess I'll be shoveling it again soon enough – snow that is.

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When you're ready to really learn Lightroom, here's the most painless way to do so. Purchase and download our Lightroom 2 video tutorial and automatically receive a discount on our Lightroom 3 tutorial when it becomes available.


"I wanted to congratulate you on your LL guide to Lightroom 2 which I've just watched in a marathon single sitting while trying out the techniques demonstrated on a second monitor. Despite managing a database  of 40,000 images in Lightroom this is the first time I've really deeply understood this software. The tutorial was extremely thorough, clear and enlightening. I cant wait to incorporate this new knowledge into my daily work".




14 January, 2010 - Flying With Camera Gear Post 25 Dec, '09. What's Changed?

First we had to take laptops out of their bags. Then we took our shoes off. Then liquids needed to be in little plastic baggies. Now, after the Dec 25 aborted attack do we need to remove our underwear before boarding a plane and also refrain from peeing during the last hour of our flights? Will the indignities never end?

Not quite, but also things are a lot more stringent than they were just a few weeks ago.

I've just returned from a three week trip to Spain, and over the past few days have flown within Europe, from Europe to the U.S. and from the U.S. to Canada – all with camera gear.

Knowing I was traveling, a number of people have written asking about my experience and what if anything has changed.

You can read about this experience and also enjoy some of the images shot earlier this month in the Canary Islands in my latest essay – Flying with Camera Gear Post Dec 25, 2009 : What's Changed – What Hasn't?

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UPDATE:

If you live in Canada, and travel to the U.S. by air, read the following update to today's article on flying with camera gear.

This is simply outrageous, unnecessary, and unacceptable! What's next? Pre-boarding enemas?

UPDATE #2:

There is now some additional information available from CATSA on what items are permissable on Canada to U.S. flights. It can be found linked here.

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I just finished going through again your recent seminar series on Where the #%*! Are my Pictures? with you and Seth Resnick, and I must compliment you and Seth on producing a great seminar.  I never learned so much in so little time and I have started implementing some of the strategies presented already.  

Your interviewing style seems to bring out the best in your seminar partners presenting the content as a story with a logical end.  DAM is an intimidating subject, but after watching the seminars, I walked away with a total understanding and how (with Seth’s experience) to increase my workflow process.




18 January, 2010 - The Photographer Excludes

Photographic composition and the process that we go through in deciding how to frame and crop our images is endless fascinating. Our newest essay by Peter Cox is entitled The Photographer Excludes.

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IMPORTANT CANADIAN AIR TRAVEL UPDATE

Following last week's article on air travel for photographers I have been receiving regular updates from readers and government agencies about changing regulations regarding air travel, especially from Canada to the U.S.

Be aware that Transport Canada has just issued a new advisory in the form of a consumer awareness video which I urge everyone to view, as it contains vital information on the way in which you will be treated when you travel by air in Canada.

I urge all travelers to watch it immediately.

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Regular readers will have noted that I've been shooting extensively with the Leica M9 since its introduction some months ago. I continue to be impressed by its overall image quality.

But I have also been thinking a lot about the rangefinder camera's relevance in today's environment. Later this week I will publish an Open Letter to Leica, with my thoughts on the future of the M Series camera. Watch for it.

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The Photocrati Fund offers a $5,000 grants to non-professional photographers to undertake important humanitarian and environmental photography projects. Their stated goal is to identify outstanding, up-and-coming photographers and give them the resources necessary to pursue projects that will have a tangible and positive effect on the world.

I have no association with Photocrati but because this seems legit and worthwhile and this fund is similar to the Endowment Fund which we offered here a few years ago, I thought it worth drawing to your attention.

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"Video Journal 19, one of the best. Interesting and relevant topics, knowledgeable engaging guests, and a host that gently guides the conversation through terrain I want to explore. And more, it's beautifully shot in a clean, no tricks style that keeps the conversation in focus. Well done all! This one is worth twice the price".

– paul b. kramarchyk

 




20 January, 2010 - Sanity (a bit) Returns For Photographers Flying from Canada to U.S.

There's good news today for photographers and others that fly from Canada to the U.S. with carry-on on bags. As reported by the site Flying With FishTransport Canada and CATSA have removed their onerous and arbitrary restrictions on carry-on bags, in effect since the fortunately aborted Dec 25 incident.

You can read more about it here. This means that photographers can once again travel with their photographic equipment in approriate bags, such as the Think Airport Security; Pelican 1514; Mountainsmith Parallax; and Gura Gear Kiboko Bag. Weight, of course, is still an issue, but that's always been the case.

Maybe the efforts of sites such as this in recent days, as well as industry associations and individuals who have been putting pressure on the bureacrats in Ottawa, had some small effect.




21 January, 2010 - An Open Letter to Leica Regarding a Future M10

After nearly 60 years, has the Leica M series camera finally reached its best before date? Is an optical rangefinder camera a valid holdover or an anachronism?

There's no doubt in my mind that with the Leica M9 that company has produced a digital version of the M that finally is what Leica afficionados have been waiting for. Image quality is nothing short of superb, and with full frame and no need for IR filters what more can we want?

In my Open Letter to Leica, published today for the first time, I look at the question of whether the Leica M9 is the end of that particular road, and if so what can be done to move it to the next generation of technology while not abandoning those things that make it unique among cameras.

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When you're ready to really learn Lightroom, here's the most painless way to do so. Purchase and download our Lightroom 2 video tutorial and automatically receive a discount on our Lightroom 3 tutorial when it becomes available.

"If a picture is worth a thousand words, a video must be worth a thousand pictures.
 
Just to let you know that I found your Lightroom Tutorial most helpful in understanding, not only which buttons to push, but the gestalt behind the program.  Especially helpful was the orgainzation.
 
All in all the best $40.00 I have spent recently".

– Jim Cassatt




24 January, 2010 - Another Perspective on the M Leica's Future

My Open Letter to Leica, published this past week, has as I expected it might, generated quite a bit of comment both on this site's forum and elsewhere online. A bit of browsing the discussions shows about an equal mix of those that think I'm apostate and those that agree with my suggestions. Fine. As long as Leica knows what some of us are looking for – mission accomplished.

My friend Mark Dubovoy, a well known photographer, teacher, and industry pundit, has also written some thoughts on the changes that he would like to see Leica consider for a next-generation camera, and his new essay is now online.

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Speaking of things Leica, Sean Reid has written Part 2 of his Leica S2 review, based on some weeks of using the new system in a Vermont winter. Sean was one of the other journalists invited by Leica to Germany last fall for a preview of the S2 and M9. Sean brings a different perspective than mine to the S2, as he is not normally a medium format digital user. Yet, I found his conclusions to be quit similar to mine in terms of that camera's strengths and weaknesses. Reid Reviews is a subscription web site.

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Wednesday will see the announcement of the much-anticipated Apple Tablet (iPad?). Few doubt that it will be a game-changing product in the way that the iPod and iPhone have been. But will it be a device that offers capabilities of use and interest to photographers? We'll know in a few days, and I expect to have some comments about it here not long afterward.

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"Video Journal 19, one of the best. Interesting and relevant topics, knowledgeable engaging guests, and a host that gently guides the conversation through terrain I want to explore. And more, it's beautifully shot in a clean, no tricks style that keeps the conversation in focus. Well done all! This one is worth twice the price".

– paul b. kramarchyk




26 January, 2010 - Thom Hogan Considers - What's Next For Leica?

Clearly Leica is a company whose products are well loved and respected by many. This is the only way to explain the large number of people that have written to me over the past few days with comments and suggestions on my recent Open Letter to Leica. We don't all agree on what we'd like to see next, but the fact that we care speaks volumes for the brand.

I was pleased to receive one yesterday from Thom Hogan, one of the most respected technical writers in the industry, and the leading independant authority on Nikon cameras.

With his permission I have now published his letter as an essay titled Thom Hogan Considers – What's Next For Leica?

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27 January, 2010 - What Will The Apple iPad Mean For Photographers?

What will it all mean? Clearly the Apple iPad will be a game-changing device for the publishing industry as well as consumers. For many it will be all the computer that they need, offering small size, low price, and simplicity of operation.

For others it will become their main tool for web surfing, email, as well as reading newspapers, books and magazines. It also looks to be a pretty decent game machine.

But what about for photographers? Are there features there for us? And more importantly, will the changes that the iPad makes to the publishing industry be as seismic as those created by the iPod and the iTunes Store?

I have just published a brief essay titled The Apple iPad – What it Means for Photographers. Some food for thought and hopefully some constructive debate, which I invite you to join on this site's discussion forum.




29 January, 2010 - Winter 2010 Cheer-Up Contest Announced

It's contest time again. Every once in a while we run a promotional contest to remind people that we publish several unique training videos, including The Luminous Landscape Guide to Camera Raw, From Camera to Print, our Guide to Asset Management, our Adobe Lightroom Tutorial, and nineteen different issues of our unique video magazine, The Luminous Landscape Video Journal.

The prices are reasonable, the content is terrific, and your purchases help support the existence of this site.

Our new contest offers ten chances to win a full boxed version of Adobe Lightroom 3, compliments of Adobe. Every purchase of one of our products, any product, is another chance to win. Purchases made thus far in January already count toward the contest.

There will be a new winner announced roughly every week for the next few months. One of them could be you.

Thanks for your support.




1 February, 2010 - Learning From The Best Images

How can we become better photographers? Craft and equipment have their roles, but seeing trumps everything else.

Today's new essay is by author and regular contributor George Barr, and is titled Learning From The Best Images – Yours, Mine, and History’s.

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Today's Home Page photograph is the last from a series shot on the island of La Gomera, Spain last month. I have now collected these on this page for those that might be interested, since several of them don't appear anywhere else on this site once they disappear from the Home Page.

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I am now on a private shoot for a few days in the desert in Southern California, with Chris Sanderson and Jeff Schewe. We are working on our next video tutorials, and this trip will provide both fresh images to work on and location discussions.

I'll be working with my Phase One DF camera and P65+ back, and also field testing the just-released Olympus E-P2. My report on this new small Micro-Four-Thirds Olympus will appear here later in the month.

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Readers who purchase our current Lightroom 2 tutorial
will be eligible for a discount on our future Lightroom 3
tutorial.

 




2 February, 2010 - Air Rage. Toronto Airport Is Broken

Toronto Pearson International Airport is broken and the fault lies with the GTAA. This may not be of interest to you unless you live in Canada's largest city and fly to the U.S., but if you do you need to read my latest essay titled Toronto / U.S. Travel Outrage.

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UPDATE

In the half day since Toronto / U.S. Travel Outrage was first published I have received more e-mail about it than anything else that I have ever written on this site in the past 11 years.

Thank you everyone for your thoughts, support and suggestions. Unfortunately because I am traveling in the U.S this week on a shoot (which is why this was all reported on in the first place), I am constrained in my ability to reply as I would like. So please accept this as my thanks for the communications.

I would also like to point out that I received a call from a senior representative of the GTAA and we spoke for about a half hour. He was very concerned as well as understanding, and indicated that he would be investigating all of the issues that were raised, and also would reply to them in due course. I believe that the GTAA is well aware of the problems that exists but in large measure finding solutions is difficult because the airport is subject to at least a half dozen government and administrative jurisdictions, and they don't all play nicely together, even in the face of consumer outrage.

That being the case, I have decided that I will not be flying to the U.S. out of Toronto Pearson until the current situation is fixed. Porter from the Island airport is one solution, as is driving to Buffalo, which also has  less expensive air fares. And, there's always simply accepting the fact that air travel has become a major pain in the butt, and simply isn't worth the hassle anymore except when absolutely necessary.




3 February, 2010 - New Cameras - Prices Drop

One good thing about the lousy economy, it's leading to reduced prices on cameras. Two that were just announced in anticipation of the PMA show  later this month are the Hasselblad H4D-40 at some U.S. $20,000 and the Olympus E-PL2 at about $600 – both very aggressively priced in their respective catagories.

I had preview comments (under NDA) on each of these in preparation, but since both products were leaked well in advance by other sites I've decided to save my breath. In any event, I am hoping to review them when they become available for testing. For the time being you can read about them on the major camera review sites.

What I am shooting with and field testing at the moment is the Olympus E-P2, which is turning out to be a much more enjoyable camera than I had anticipated. Look for a review soon.

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"Video Journal 19, one of the best. Interesting and relevant topics, knowledgeable engaging guests, and a host that gently guides the conversation through terrain I want to explore. And more, it's beautifully shot in a clean, no tricks style that keeps the conversation in focus. Well done all! This one is worth twice the price".

– paul b. kramarchyk




6 February, 2010 - A Question of White Balance

Many photographers obsess over proper white balance. But what is more important – accuracy or looking good? My take on this is found in our latest essay – A Question of White Balance.

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We're pleased to announce the first of ten winners in our Winter 2010 Cheer-Up Contest. This week's winner is Mirek Elsner, of Bellevue, WA. Congratulations Mirek.

There will be nine more winners in the weeks ahead. You could be one of them. Any purchase of one of our video tutorials or Video Journals is a qualifying entry. Find out more.

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Readers who purchase our current Lightroom 2 tutorial
will be eligible for a discount on our future Lightroom 3
tutorial.




10 February, 2010 - The Light Fantastic - Capturing the Inner Sense of the Scottish Landscape

Photography can be about literal record making or it can be about interpretation and emotion. In The Light Fantastic – Capturing the Inner Sense of the Scottish Landscape by Ted Leeming & Morag Paterson, we find a sophisticated visual and written examination of how and why to make images that stir the imagination.

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The past couple of days have seen the introduction of a number of new high-end products, including Version 3 of Apple's Aperture, a new Canon Rebel, and new lenses from Nikon. Since I don't usually publish press releases you may want to visit one of the major camera review sites that does to find out more about these.

More announcements are due over the next few days, leading up to the PMA show later this month.

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Photojournalist Peter Turnley has just returned from Haiti with a powerful photo essay, which is being hosted by The Online Photographer. Congratulations to publisher Mike Johnston for placing this online and especially to Peter for his excellent work.

If you have not already made a contribution to Haiti relief may I suggest that you do so though any of your local relief agencies, or via The American Red Cross.

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When you're ready to really learn Lightroom, here's the most painless way to do so. Purchase and download our Lightroom 2 video tutorial and automatically receive a discount on our Lightroom 3 tutorial when it becomes available.

You will also be automatically entered in our latest contest and win one of 10 weekly prizes.

"If a picture is worth a thousand words, a video must be worth a thousand pictures.
 
Just to let you know that I found your Lightroom Tutorial most helpful in understanding, not only which buttons to push, but the gestalt behind the program.  Especially helpful was the orgainzation.
 
All in all the best $40.00 I have spent recently".

– Jim Cassatt

 




13 February, 2010 - Olympus Pen E-P2 Field Review

The Micro Four-Thirds format continues to strengthen. Olympus is now shipping its updated E-P2, and I have just finished several weeks of field testing, including on a recent shoot in Joshua Tree National Park. My Olympus E-P2 Field Review is now online.

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Ironically, while Olympus decided to tone down the cosmetics of their MFT cameras, with the E-P2 styled in a more subdued black finish rather than the E-P1's white, Panasonic this week announced that their GF1, a direct competitor to the new E-P2, will be available in pink in certain markets. Yes, my friends, pink. I will say no more.

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I will be in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico, for the next two weeks. If any regular readers live there and would like to say "Hi," drop me a line.

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Readers who purchase our current Lightroom 2 tutorial
will be eligible for a discount on our future Lightroom 3
tutorial.

 




17 February, 2010 - Composing With Color

It's been far too long since we've had an essay by our regular columnist Alain Briot. The fault is mine.

Alain's latest is Part One of a new series titled Composing With Color.

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Readers who purchase our current Lightroom 2 tutorial
will be eligible for a discount on our future Lightroom 3
tutorial.




20 February, 2010 - Winners and Workshops

Today's winner in our Lightroom 3 Winter Cheer-Up Contest is Karin De Winter of Antwerp, Belgium. Congratulations Karin, and I must say a most appropriate name for this particular contest.

Who will be next week's winner? You can be if you purchase any of our download video tutorials or Video Journals. Each purchase made is another entry in the competition. There are a total of 10 prizes to be won. A new winner is announced approximately every week.

 

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Have you ever taken a photographic workshop? If you are passionate about photography this can be one of the best ways of improving your craft, inspiring your art and extending your community.

Our Workshops listing page contains a small group of some of the world's finest photographic educators. I can unreservedly recommend each of them because I have taught and worked with them each over the years. Two of them, Jay Maisel and Alain Briot, have also just announced new programs.

And, in response to many requests, I'll simply reiterate that I am taking 2010 off from tours and workshops, devoting my time to personal travel and projects. I still though am doing One-On-One sessions at my gallery / studio in Toronto.

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Readers who purchase our current Lightroom 2 tutorial
will be eligible for a discount on our future Lightroom 3
tutorial.




22 February, 2010 - PMA / Ho Hum : Capture One 5.1 Released

Well, the PMA show opened yesterday, what few new products that were not announced earlier in the month were introduced, and life goes on.

Since the photographic industry has become indistinguishable from the consumer electronics industry we have come to expect a rush of new products even six months, or less. But the world-wide recession of the past year combined with a slowing in the rate of change in the digital revolution, means that recent developments are more cosmetic and superficial than significant. In any event, it's also a Photokina year (Sept., 2010) and so we're likely to see the next round of significant product announcements then.

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Phase One has announced the release of Version 5.1 of their Capture One software. Though it would appear to be a dot release, it's much more than that, with significant new features, capabilities and camera support. Current C1 users can download a free update, and everyone else can download a free, fully functional, 30 day trial copy.

I am currently preparing a major multi-hour video tutorial on Capture One 5.1 along with Walter Borchenko, the world's leading expert on C1 software and training. Watch for it here this Spring.

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I have been spending most of the month of February, 2010 in San Miguel Allende, Mexico. I have now started a new page containing a few of the photographs resulting from this trip. These are also appearing on the Home Page from time to time. The San Miguel portfolio page will be updated periodically during February and March.

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"Video Journal 19, one of the best. Interesting and relevant topics, knowledgeable engaging guests, and a host that gently guides the conversation through terrain I want to explore. And more, it's beautifully shot in a clean, no tricks style that keeps the conversation in focus. Well done all! This one is worth twice the price".

– paul b. kramarchyk




26 February, 2010 - What is it About? - Deconstructing an Image

When I do portfolio reviews with students and I discuss an image of theirs that I don't feel has been successful, the question that I ask is – What is it about? This seemingly innocent question is, in my experience, one which causes any photographer to reflect on their own work in a way that is necessarily part of the creative process.

A new essay titled What is it About? – Deconstructing an Image uses today's Home Page photograph as an example of how this process is done.

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Phase One has just announced the continuation of  PODAS – the Phase One Digital Artist Series, workshops to be held around the world this year that you will want to learn more about. I'll have more to discuss about these in the weeks ahead.

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Leica Camera has announced that it will bring the latest and newest Leica products to major North American cities as part of the first-ever Leica North American Road Show. Leica’s product specialists will visit 26 cities over the course of 14 weeks; the road show will commence on March 18, 2010 in Miami, Florida and conclude on June 23, 2010 in Nashville, Tennessee.  The series is designed to enhance participants’ knowledge of and familiarity with the M and S Systems.

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Readers who purchase our current Lightroom 2 tutorial
will be eligible for a discount on our future Lightroom 3
tutorial.




3 March, 2010 - Preparation Comes First

How do you get ready to do your photography? Jack Graham shares his thoughts in an essay titled Preparation Comes First.

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Sean Reid at Reid Reveiws has just published a thorough review of the Canon 85/1.2 L II (including extensive comparisons with the Canon 85/1.8).  He also has a previous review that compares the Zeiss ZE 85/1.4 with the Canon 85/1.8, as well, so the whole trio of fast EOS mount 85s is now covered on the site. Reid Reviews is a subscription site.

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The winner of last week's Contest is Marc McDonald of Boulder, CO. Congratulations Mark! We'll be sending you a full boxed copy of Adobe Lightroom 3 as soon as it ships.

Who will be next week's winner? It could be you!

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Readers who purchase our current Lightroom 2 tutorial
will be eligible for a discount on our future Lightroom 3
tutorial.




6 March, 2010 - Hasselblad H3D 50 II Multishot Versus Phase One P65+ / 645AF

The air is thin at the top. Whether it's Ferrari vs Lamborghini, or, of interest to photographers – Hasselblad vs Phase One – the two remaining leaders of the medium format world.

Every now and then it's fun to pitch top contenders against each other, and when they are both kings of their respective hills, all the more so.

Today we have an exclusive review by our regular contributor Mark Dubovoy titled Hasselblad H3D 50 II Multishot  Versus Phase One P65+ / 645AF.

What makes this particularly interesting is that the 50II back from Hasselblad is a multi-shot, in theory a technology able to produce higher image quality than that from a Bayer array, as used in the Phase One P65+. But the Phase is a higher resolution back, so how will it all work out?

I'll bet you'll be surprised.

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As you may have read previously here I have no field workshops planned during 2010. This is a sabbatical year for me, focusing on other business and personal projects.

But there are some very fine teachers and trips available which I can recommend.

My friend David Burren has an Antarctic Photographic Expedition planned for this coming November. The initerary includes the Falkland Islands as well as South George Island.

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Art Wolfe needs no introduction to anyone interested in nature photography. His work is recognized around the world. What you may not know is that Art is also a very fine teacher, and does a large number of lectures and field workshops world-wide.

Click here for further information, including a list of cities in the U.S. and Canada where Art will be speaking in the next few months.

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7 March - The Dynamic Range Debate

Yesterday's review here by Mark Dubovoy titled Hasselblad H3D 50 II Multishot  Versus Phase One P65+ / 645AF generated some considerable discussion on this site's forum, particularly with regard to the issue of dynamic range. Though he found the Hasselblad and the Phase backs to be very similar in dynamic range, he also wrote "The dynamic range of a typical high-end professional 35 mm DSLR is around 7 F/stops. Medium Format cameras are closer to 13 F/stops of dynamic range," and the cat was among the pidgeons.

The issue seems to be contentious because different people use different definitions of dynamic range. As one person put it, "It's like comparing apples with cassaba melons."

I have therefore just added an Editor's Note to Mark's review with my observation on the subject. Hopefully it will clarify a debate that has been  murky for some time.

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Readers who purchase our current Lightroom 2 tutorial
will be eligible for a discount on our future Lightroom 3
tutorial.




11 March, 2010 - Composing With Color, Part II

Today's new tutorial, by our regular contributor Alain Briot, is titled Composing With Color, Part II.

"Video Journal 19, one of the best. Interesting and relevant topics, knowledgeable engaging guests, and a host that gently guides the conversation through terrain I want to explore. And more, it's beautifully shot in a clean, no tricks style that keeps the conversation in focus. Well done all! This one is worth twice the price".

– paul b. kramarchyk




15 March, 2010 - The Top Two Things You Can't Do On the Internet

Confused and frustrated by all the claims and counterclaims found on the Net about image quality, DSLR vs Medium Format, this bit of technology vs that bit of technology? Ya. Me too.

Today we have an essay titled The Top Two Things You Can't Do On the Internet written by one of the industry's most knowledgable sales executives.

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The winner of last week's Contest is Spyros Triantos of Richmond, MA. Congratulations Spyros! We'll be sending you a full boxed copy of Adobe Lightroom 3 as soon as it ships.

Who will be next week's winner? It could be you!

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UPDATE

Interested in the new Pentax 645D? This fascinating new cameras was shown in production form last week at the CP-Plus show in Yokohama, Japan, and our intrepid reporter Bernard LANGUILLIER was there. We'll have his observations as well as an exclusive interview about the camera with Pentax's Product Planning executive here tomorrow – and yes, the 645D will be eventually available outside of Japan.

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Readers who purchase our current Lightroom 2 tutorial
will be eligible for a discount on our future Lightroom 3
tutorial.




17 March, 2010 - Pentax 645D First Impressions and an Interview

Are you interested in the Pentax 645D? A lot of photographers are. With a weatherproof body, the ability to take all previous Pentax 645 lenses, and a 40MP Kodak CCD sensor without an AA filter, all at less than US $10,000, there's a lot to potentially like.

And, unlike Mamiya, with their similar but ill-fated ZD camera of several years ago, Pentax at least has some considerable digital expertise of their own because of their DSLRs.

Our colleague Bernard Languillier lives in Tokyo and today gives us his first impressions as well as an exclusive interview with Pentax Product Planning executive Yasuyuki Maekawa who shared some interesting information about the philosophy of the 645D and background behind some key design decisions.




21 March, 2010 - Two Viewing Options

Photographers who work slowly, using medium format, technical and view cameras, don't have the luxury of holding their camera up to the eye to preview composition. Some use simple plastic or cardboard viewing aids, while others use expensive auxiliary viewfinders.

A new iPhone app, called Viewfinder, just released yesterday, turns ones iPhone into a versatile device for previewing composition and lens selection. My review is now online.

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Another viewing option is the Hoodloup 3. I originally wrote this review in mid-2009, but somehow the draft was lost and was only discovered a short while ago. Though the product isn't new, it's still worth mentioning for those that haven't yet tried it.

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I wrote a couple of months ago about the revolution that the iPad and similar tablet devices hold in store for professional photography. This new video provides some compelling insights into the changes that are about to take place in our profession.

 ____________________

"Video Journal 19, one of the best. Interesting and relevant topics, knowledgeable engaging guests, and a host that gently guides the conversation through terrain I want to explore. And more, it's beautifully shot in a clean, no tricks style that keeps the conversation in focus. Well done all! This one is worth twice the price".

– paul b. kramarchyk




23 March, 2010 - Lightroom 3 Public Beta Two Released

Adobe has today released a second public beta of Lightroom 3. There's a lot that's been improved behind the scenes, and quite a few new features – and of course it's still free – at least until it ships as a commercial release some time later this year. You do not need a serial number or to have owned a previous version of Lightroom.

My colleague Ian Lyons has just published an in-depth preview of Beta Two, and since Ian knows the product just about as well as anyone I know, this is the place to go for a look at what's new in the download of Lightroom 3 Beta 2.

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This site is about the art and craft of photography, and I rarely if ever use it as a platform for social or political commentary. But I can't help but congratulate the U.S. on the passage of its historic national health care bill.

The U.S. now joins just about every other country in the developed world in having (at least the beginnings) of a national health care program for its citizens. This is a day of significance for the American people, and I for one am very pleased to finally see it come to pass.

____________________

Readers who purchase our current Lightroom 2 tutorial
will be eligible for a discount on our future Lightroom 3
tutorial.




25 March, 2010 - Worthwhile Workshops

http://www.luminous-landscape.com/workshops/podas.shtml

As regular readers know I am taking 2010 off from teaching field workshops – a sort of sabbatical year to concentrate on my own personal projects and travel.

But I am frequently asked about workshops and seminars that I can recommend. That's what my Workshops page is about. It provides links to those educators and companies with whom I am familiar, who I've personally worked with in the past, and who I can recommend with confidence.

Two new ones, which were announced today are the Phase One Digital Artists series (PODAS) and also Art Wolf's lecture series on The Art of Composition, taking place this year in major U.S. and Canadian cities.

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The new Canon 17mm tilt-shift lens is quite remarkable. I used it with the Hartblei Cam late last year, and was knocked out by its performance.

Sean Reid at Reid Reviews has recently published extensive reviews of the two new Canon tilt/shift lenses - the 17/4.0 L TS-E and 24/3.5 L TS-E II.  Reid Reviews is an independent review site which accepts no advertising but instead is subscription-based. Recommended.

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When you're ready to really learn Lightroom, here's the most painless way to do so. Purchase and download our Lightroom 2 video tutorial and automatically receive a discount on our Lightroom 3 tutorial when it becomes available.

You will also be automatically entered in our latest contest and win one of 10 weekly prizes.

"If a picture is worth a thousand words, a video must be worth a thousand pictures.
 
Just to let you know that I found your Lightroom Tutorial most helpful in understanding, not only which buttons to push, but the gestalt behind the program.  Especially helpful was the orgainzation.
 
All in all the best $40.00 I have spent recently".

– Jim Cassatt

 




31 March, 2010 - Arca Cube, Take 2

If you're a serious landscape photographer better lock up your Visa card before reading our latest review. It is titled Arca Cube - Take 2.

In my experience everyone that reads about the Cube says "Oh, ya, nice, but too expensive". Then when they see and handle one they say, "Why didn't you tell me about this before? Damn; I have to have one."

You've been warned.

____________________

If you've been looking for a 56MP medium format back that will fit almost any camera system, and which has the ability to rotate the sensor internally, have a look at the just-announced Leaf Aptus II 10-R.

____________________

The winner of this week's Lightroom 3 contest draw is Larry Rezka, Ontario, Canada. Congratulations Larry.

Maybe next week it'll be you.

____________________

"Video Journal 19, one of the best. Interesting and relevant topics, knowledgeable engaging guests, and a host that gently guides the conversation through terrain I want to explore. And more, it's beautifully shot in a clean, no tricks style that keeps the conversation in focus. Well done all! This one is worth twice the price".

– paul b. kramarchyk

 




7 April, 2010 - Constructing the Composition: Angkor Wat

Our new columnist, Art Wolfe, provides us today with an essay titled Constructing The Composition: Angor Wat.

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The Apple iPad arrived this weekend along with the Easter Bunny and chocolate eggs. Rabbits and eggs are pagan fertility symbols that have somehow become intertwined with the Christian holiday, but there was something of an appropriate irony in Apple choosing this particular weekend to launch the iPad, since it is in many ways a harbinger of things to come.

I've been becoming familiar with mine for the past few days and continue to believe that it's going to be a game-changer, especially for professional photographers, because of what it implies for the publishing industry. Print media will never be the same again.

There are also some new iPad specific apps that are either paticularly cool, or that may appeal to nature and landscape photographers, and one of these that I quite enjoy is Emerald Observatory.

Whether you're an astronomy buff, a time freak, or a photographer looking for information about sunrise and sunset times, as well as the moon's phase and position, Emerald Observatory will be the best $0.99 cents that you'll spend this week.

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14 April, 2010 - Imageprint 8 Review

It's been a while since I've had a review of the Imageprint RIP on this site. Two version ago, in fact. Now, Imageprint 8 is here, and contributor Markus Zuber has his exclusive review available.

____________________

Looking for your next great photographic adventure? How about a NAMIBIA PHOTOGRAPHIC SAFARI with John Paul Caponigro.

____________________

The great convergence is now starting to gather steam. Both Panasonic and Sony, two major forces in the broadcast as well as prosumer / consumer video fields, announced large sensor video cameras at the NAB show this week.


Panasonic AG-AF100

Panasonic's AG-AF100 is based on its Micro Four Thirds still camera format while Sony's as yet unnamed entry has a full 35mm sensor and and Alpha lens mount.

Let's hope that Panasonic's design engineers are better than their illustrators – because what they're showing above looks like a camcorder from 1975.


What both of these entries (due late 2010 / early 2011) bring to the market is cinema style depth of field because of their large sensors, something that current 1/4" , 1/3" and 1/2" video cameras can't offer.

One of the reasons that movie makers tolerate the horrendous ergonomics and woeful feature set of today's video DSLRs is the wonderfully shallow DOF which they offer. I believe that once this new generation of large sensor cameras become available over the next 6-12 months, the days of Combocams being used in professional production will be numbered.

Speaking of which, if you're a fan of the popular Fox TV series House, you might want to watch the season's finale episode on May 17 as it was shot entirely with a Canon 5D MKII.

And on the subject of Canon, with the Panasonic and Sony large sensor video camera announcements this week, Canon is left as the only major company in the field to not have announced an entry. Let's hope that they don't take as long as they did with their first solid state video camera offerings (3 years late), the just announced HPX 370/371.


Sony's 35mm Alpha Camcorder

Update:

FreshDV has an interview with the Pansonic product manager, shot on the floor at the NAB show. It provides insights into the new AF100 Micro Four Thirds video camera (delivery December – $6,000) and a better though still brief look at the camera's design.

 ____________________

"Video Journal 19, one of the best. Interesting and relevant topics, knowledgeable engaging guests, and a host that gently guides the conversation through terrain I want to explore. And more, it's beautifully shot in a clean, no tricks style that keeps the conversation in focus. Well done all! This one is worth twice the price".

– paul b. kramarchyk




19 April, 2010 - Photographing the Aurora

Have you ever photographed an aurora, or even seen one?

Mark Dubovoy travelled to Northern Canada a couple of months ago for just this purpose, and came away with shots of a quite spectacular display.

As a physicist by profession he can't resist explaing what causes the aurora, as well as how best to photograph one when you have the opportunity. His new tutorial is titled, naturally enough, Photographing The Aurora.

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Fancy a photographic workshop in Tasmania this coming December? If so consider this one being put on by my friend (and frequent contributor to this site) Nick Rains. Nick is the Editor of one of Australia's leading photographic magazines, and a very fine photographer and teacher.

____________________

"If a picture is worth a thousand words, a video must be worth a thousand pictures.
 
Just to let you know that I found your Lightroom Tutorial most helpful in understanding, not only which buttons to push, but the gestalt behind the program.  Especially helpful was the orgainzation.
 
All in all the best $40.00 I have spent recently".

– Jim Cassatt

 




23 April, 2010 - Ricoh GRX. Where Does It Fit?

Ricoh has always made fascinating if somewhat quirky cameras. Today, Sean Reid gives us his take on where the GRX-A12 fits in the current camera taxonomy.

Sean has also just published a comprehensive user review of the GRX-A12 on his subscription site, which I can highly recommend.

 ____________________

The most recent winner in our Lightroom 3 contest is Jenny Sampson of Berkeley, CA . Congratulations Jenny. She wins a boxed copy, once it ships, of LR3 worth $300.

How did she win? Simply by purchasing one of our tutorials or Video Journals. Find out more.

____________________

Readers who purchase our current Lightroom 2 tutorial
will be eligible for a discount on our future Lightroom 3
tutorial.

 

 




25 April, 2010 - Leica S2 Review Update : iPad Reads Raw Files

My friend, and well known Australian photographer, educator and magazine editor Nick Rains, has just completed his tests of the Leica S2.

Leica has also just announced a firmware upgrade for the S2, and Nick kindly provides us today with his brief impressions of the S2, what the firmware upgrade has accomplished, as well as what has been left unresolved.

 ____________________

Another friend, well known London photographer and lecturer Drew Gardner has just completed working with kids in the townships of South Africa, teaching them about photography. Drew asked if I would link to his blog, which I am more than happy to do, as this appears to be a very worthwhile undertaking.

 ____________________


A small number of iPad Camera Connection Kits (USB adaptors and SD card readers) became available over the past few days, and to everyone's amazement (at least mine) the iPad is able to read all raw camera files that the Mac (OSX / iPhoto / Aperture) can handle.

This is great news, and makes the iPad an ideal travel / storage / backup / review device for photographers working in the field.

The only bad news is that the main shipment of these adaptors won't be available for another couple of weeks.

____________________




28 April, 2010 - Canon X300 Printer Review

Canon has a new series of high-end photo printers on the market, called the X300 series. How do these stack up against the best from Epson and HP?

Scott Martin is widely experienced with all three brands, and today gives us his in-depth review of the new Canon printers and how they compare.

____________________

Care to see what else is coming in Lightroom 3 when it ships? Have a watch of this video from Lightroom Product Manager Tom Hogarty. I think you'll be both pleased and impressed.

____________________

"If a picture is worth a thousand words, a video must be worth a thousand pictures.
 
Just to let you know that I found your Lightroom Tutorial most helpful in understanding, not only which buttons to push, but the gestalt behind the program.  Especially helpful was the orgainzation.
 
All in all the best $40.00 I have spent recently".

– Jim Cassatt




1 May, 2010 - Panasonic TM700 Camcorder Review / Leica Accessories

Video DSLRs are hot. But camcorders keep improving as well, and for anyone looking to have a very high quality video camera for under $1,000, the new Panasonic TM700 has a lot to offer. Our in-depth review is now online.

____________________

Do you own a Leica M8 or M9? If so, Mark Dubovoy's latest suggestions on a few must-have accessories may be just what you're looking for.

____________________

"If a picture is worth a thousand words, a video must be worth a thousand pictures.
 
Just to let you know that I found your Lightroom Tutorial most helpful in understanding, not only which buttons to push, but the gestalt behind the program.  Especially helpful was the orgainzation.
 
All in all the best $40.00 I have spent recently".

– Jim Cassatt




6 May, 2010 - Canon Tilt-Shift Lens TS-E 24/3.5L Version II - A Review

The new Canon 24mm/TS has only been available for just a few months, but along with the 17mm/TS it is developing quite a reputation. Canon's wide angle lenses never were one of its strengths, but with these two lenses the game is newly afoot.

Today we have an exclusive review of the Canon Tilt-Shift Lens TS-E 24/3.5L Version II by Harold M. Merklinger, a respected scientist, and one of the world's authorities on lens movements.

____________________

It's been some months since I last hit the road with my camera, (so to speak), and so before I start suffering from withdrawal symptoms I'm heading off today to British Columbia and Washington State for about a week of shooting with a few friends, mostly in Olympic National Park.

I may be online and posting new content from time to time, but that will depend on my access to WiFi and our shooting schedule.

____________________

And finally, a friendly reminder that our ability to keep publishing this site is dependent on revenues from your purchases of our videos, the Video Journals as well as the training videos. This is our sole source of income.

Your support is greatly appreciated. Thank you.




9 May, 2010 - Photographing the Eyjafjallajokull Volcano in Iceland

The  Eyjafjallajökull Volcano in Iceland has certainly caught the world's attention, especially after disrupting air traffic in Europe for almost a week.

But as photographers we always want to consider the imaging opportunities inherent in any major natural event, and volcanoes are among the most visually exciting.

Today well known Irish landscape photographer Peter Cox provides us with his first-hand experience and suggestions in Photographing the Eyjafjallajökull Volcano in Iceland.

 ____________________

"Video Journal 19, one of the best. Interesting and relevant topics, knowledgeable engaging guests, and a host that gently guides the conversation through terrain I want to explore. And more, it's beautifully shot in a clean, no tricks style that keeps the conversation in focus. Well done all! This one is worth twice the price".

– paul b. kramarchyk




11 May, 2010 - Sony Announces NEX-5 and NEX-3 EVIL Cameras

Sony has joined Panasonic and Olympus in the EVIL camera markerplace with the announcement of their NEX-3 and NEX-5 cameras. I have more details on my preview page, along with some thoughts on where this fits into the scheme of things.

I also expect to have my hands-on field review of the Sony NEX-5 here before the end of the month.

 ____________________

DXO has announced DXO Optics Pro for both Windows (and this time Mac simultaniously). Several new cameras are supported, including the the Canon 550D and Sony Alpha DSLR-450. The Elite edition adds supports for the Canon EOS 1D Mark IV and Nikon D3s, along with a large number of new lens modules.

As the current leader in automated raw file lens correction it will be interesting to compare DXO Optics Pro to Adobe's new auto lens correction capabilities in both Camera Raw and Lightroom 3. I expect to have a comparative review once all are on the market at the same time.
 




19 May, 2010 - Sony HX5 Field Review

Sony has been on a bit of a roll recently when it comes to their smaller cameras. I've been shooting with their shirt-pocket-sized HX5 for the past couple of months and my field review is now online.

I have just returned from a week's shoot in Olympic National Park, and the site's Home Page now has another image from that trip. I worked mainly with the Phase One 645 DF camera, five lenses and a P65+ back. I'll be publishing an extensive portfolio from there, here online before too long.

____________________

"If a picture is worth a thousand words, a video must be worth a thousand pictures.
 
Just to let you know that I found your Lightroom Tutorial most helpful in understanding, not only which buttons to push, but the gestalt behind the program.  Especially helpful was the orgainzation.
 
All in all the best $40.00 I have spent recently".

– Jim Cassatt

 

 




23 May, 2010 - Changes at Lu-La

This week marks the eleventh anniversary of this site. There are a number of changes to report and a heads-up on some coming developments.

Mark Dubovoy and Chris Sanderson have joined Michael Reichmann, the site's founder, in becoming partners in The Luminous Landscape Inc. Mark is both a nuclear physicist and venture capitalist by profession, and is as well a very fine and widely exhibited and collected fine art landscape photographer by avocation. He is also a respected photographic educator and magazine author, and has been a regular contributor and reviewer for this site for several years.

Chris is, as many of you know, the producer / cameraman / editor of this site's numerous videos and tutorials, and has been with us since almost the beginning. Previously Chris enjoyed a 30 year career as an award winning professional film and video director.

____________________

I would like to announce that I will be closing my gallery / print studio in Toronto shortly. There are a couple of reasons for this, including the move of my studio to near Creemore, Ontario, where I will be working and teaching from now on during the summer months.

Beginning this winter I will also be spending several months each year in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico where I also expect to do teaching and workshops.

 ____________________

You can expect some more significant changes to Lu-La in the weeks ahead. No – we have not been bought by Google, Microsoft or any other conglomerate. We remain independent and are beholden to no one besides ourselves.

Rather, there are some exciting changes that we have been working on for almost a year now that will start to become visible by July. These will dramatically expand our content reach as well as our community involvement. Much more than a cosmetic make-over, I assure you.

I look forward to sharing these pages with you and continuing our adventure together in the photographic community in the years ahead.

Stay tuned. – Michael




25 May, 2010 - Sony NEX-5 First Impressions Review

The Sony NEX-5 is that company's entry into what I am now calling the MARVIL marketplace, a moniker that I just invented and which stands for Mirrorless Reflex Viewfinder Interchangeable Lens.

I've now been working with the NEX-5 for nearly two weeks. How does it stand up against the competition from Panasonic, Olympus and Samsung? Is the the MARVIL camera that we've been waiting for?

My first impressions review is now online.

 ____________________

"Video Journal 19, one of the best. Interesting and relevant topics, knowledgeable engaging guests, and a host that gently guides the conversation through terrain I want to explore. And more, it's beautifully shot in a clean, no tricks style that keeps the conversation in focus. Well done all! This one is worth twice the price".

– paul b. kramarchyk




27 May, 2010 - Reviewing Art Wolfe's New Seminar Series

Art Wolfe is possibly the best known nature and landscape photographer working today. He is also a friend, and a sometime shooting companion.

Art is in the midst of a North American speaking tour, The Art of Composition, and last week Trevor Peterson attended his NY talk and now has his review online here.

 ____________________

I spent a week doing a landscape shoot in Olympic National Park in Washington state earlier this month. I have now started a portfolio page which will be updated regularly as I post new images to the site's Home Page.

 ____________________

Sean Reid is one of the most prolific writers in the field on topics related to the products that serious photographers are interested in. On his subscription site, Reid Reviews, he has just published an in-depth look at six medium-fast rangefinder lenses for the Leica M9.




1 June, 2010 - The Best Noise Reduction Plug-In Yet!

The world is a lot less noisy than it used to be. The photographic world, that is.

In the days of film, ISO 400 was noisy in B&W, and in colour ISO 800 grain looked like golf balls. The early days of digital were not that much better.

But in recent years we've grown accustomed to ISO 400 as being almost noise free, and some pro cameras now allow shooting at over ISO 100,000.

But there are still a lot of times that noisy images need to be cleaned up, and a new king of the hill appears to have emerged, in the form of Topaz Labs DeNoise 4.1. Mark Segal's exclusive review is now online.

____________________




8 June, 2010 - Lightroom 3 Released

Adobe has today (finally) released Lightroom 3. You can download it from the Adobe on-line store for your country. It should also show up at retailers shortly as well.

Ian Lyons has his usual excellent summary online of what's new in LR3.

Jeff Schewe and I have just completed filming our exhaustive live video tutorial. It will run close to ten hours in length and will drill down into every aspect of how the program works, as well as illustrate best practices.  It will be the most detailed and in-depth tutorial on Lightroom 3 available. Look for it here in the weeks ahead.

Oh yes, and our multi-hour tutorial video on Capture One should become available here very soon as well.

 ____________________

"Video Journal 19, one of the best. Interesting and relevant topics, knowledgeable engaging guests, and a host that gently guides the conversation through terrain I want to explore. And more, it's beautifully shot in a clean, no tricks style that keeps the conversation in focus. Well done all! This one is worth twice the price".

– paul b. kramarchyk

 




9 June, 2010 - Photographing Waterfalls

After sunsets, waterfalls may be the most popular landscape subject. But, that doesn't mean that shooting them effectively is easy – far from it.

Today Mark Dubovoy gives us his thoughts on and techniques for compelling waterfall photography.




13 June, 2010 - Samsung EX-1 / TL500 Hands-On Review

So you think that Canon and Panasonic dominate the high-end pocket camera market? You'd be right, till now– but there's a new kid on the block, and he looks tough.

Samsung's just-released EX-1 (TL500 in some markets) is a very stong competitor to the Canon G11 and Panasonic LX3. Read my just published hands-on review of the Samsung EX-1 to find out how it stacks up.

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14 June, 2010 - Update on Profiling Issues With Apple Computers, Epson Printers & Photoshop

Mark Dubovoy has written an update to his posting on the problems of printing custom profiles with Apple computers, Epson printers and recent versions of Photoshop. Adobe appears to have a solution in the works.

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The much delayed RED Scarlet and Epic cameras have been delayed again. You can read more here.




16 June, 2010 - The Luminous Landscape Guide to Capture One 5 Pro

It's here – our five and a half hour long live video tutorial on Capture One 5 Pro. This is the world's first in-depth training on this remarkable raw image processing program – the choice of pros around the world.

Walter Borchenko is the world's undisputed expert on Capture One, and together with Michael Reichmann they explore virtually every feature of Capture One. It's like having the two of us sitting by your side.

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Rangefinder camera photographers might be interested in the "First Impressions" review of the new LEICA 35/1.4 M Summilux ASPH LENS that Sean Reid, of Reid Reviews, has just published. He's also now working on a review that compares this new lens to several other fast 35 mm lens options for the Leica M9.

Reid Reviews is an independent subscription site that accepts no advertising and is aimed directly at professional and serious amateur photographers.

____________________

Special: 10% Off Until July 1

Find out more about...

The Luminous Landscape Guide to Capture One Pro

...and watch our sample training video.




18 June, 2010 - The Panasonic GH1 Video Hack

The Panasonic GH1 has been a huge success for that company. I reviewed it here when the camera first appeared last July, and have been shooting with it regularly since. Next to the Leica M9 it's my favourite travel camera.

The GH1 has been constantly back-ordered since the beginning, and remains extremly popular, and even though there have been several follow-on models, the GH1 is still the lead Panasonic Four Thirds camera, particularly because of its video capability.

But, what Panasonic giveth, Panasonic taketh away. The GH1's 1080P/24 HD video mode is flawed, and while the camera shoots really excellent 720P, its full-HD mode suffers from a poorly implemented video codec.

As a consequence Canon with its 5D MKII and 7D has run away with the video DSLR marketplace, even though the GH1 is in many ways a superior camera, at least operationally.

But users are forever resourceful, and there is now a hack for the GH1's firmware that allows for proper 1080P/24 video of exceptional quality. You can read all about it in my latest article titled The Panasonic GH1 Video Hack.

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Rangefinder camera photographers might be interested in the "First Impressions" review of the new LEICA 35/1.4 M Summilux ASPH LENS that Sean Reid, of Reid Reviews, has just published. He's also now working on a review that compares this new lens to several other fast 35 mm lens options for the Leica M9. Reid Reviews is an independent subscription site that accepts no advertising.

____________________

Now Available

The Luminous Landscape Guide
to Capture One Pro

Special: 10% Off Until July 1

Find out more and watch our sample training video.




22 June, 2010 - Leica M9 as Landscape Camera - Six Months Later

About six months ago I write about using the Leica M9 as a landscape camera, and how when it comes to a trade-off between weight, bulk and image quality the M9 offers a great deal to compensate for the fact that it really wasn't designed for this application.

My friend and occasional shooting companion Jack Perkins was intrigued by what I'd written and decided to make the jump from medium format to the M9 for much the same reasons. Today he shares with us his thoughts on the transition in The Leica M9 as Landscape Camera – Six Months Later.

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Panasonic AG-AF100 Specs Revealed

Following recent developments in hacking the Panasonic GH1's video capability, which I wrote about here a few days ago, Panasonic has revealed a bit more about their upcoming Four Thirds pro video camera, the AG-AF100, seen below. (Coincidence? Could be).

The specs are mouthwatering for anyone looking for a large sensor HD camcorder.  You can read them in this download PDF.

With Sony promising a similar device based on the new NEX format it could well be that the days of the video DSLR are numbered. Not because of their image quality (which is remarkably good – with cinema style DOF), but because they are really such lousy video devices. Panasonic's AG-AF100 looks like it plans on bridging that gap. I can't wait.

____________________

Now Available

The Luminous Landscape Guide
to Capture One Pro

Special: 10% Off Until July 1

Find out more and watch our sample training video.




25 June, 2010 - Voigtlander Nokton 50mm f/1.1 - A Field Report By Nick Devlin

Back in the day – when ISO 400 was fast – high speed lenses were something to be lusted after. But now, with ISO 1600 delivering excellent quality, and some cameras capable of greater than ISO 100,000, they have lost their luster. Or have they?

For some the appeal of ultra-fast lenses is not so much their light gathering power, but rather their shallow depth of field. One of the fastest lenses currently available at affordable prices for the Leica M9 is the Voigtlander Nokton 50mm f/1.1.

Today Nick Devlin provides us with his field report on this lens, based on a shoot in Olympic National Park this past May.

____________________

JUST RELEASED

The Luminous Landscape Guide
to Capture One Pro

Special: 10% Off Until July 1

Find out more and watch our sample training video.

 




28 June, 2010 - Leica S2, First Impressions

The Leica S2 has been out for many months, and there have been a number of reviews (including my own First Impressions report from Germany last September).

Now my associate, Mark Dubovoy, has had a chance to use the S2, and to compare it with his current primary systemS, the Phase One DF with P65+, and also a Leica M9. How does the S2 shape up against the world's highest resolution digital back and also the S2's littler brother? Find out in Mark Dubovoy's Leica S2 – First Impressions.

____________________

NOW AVAILABLE

The Luminous Landscape Guide
to Capture One Pro

Thank´s for one of the best tutorials I´ve seen so far!
It´s much easier to listen and learn when there is an educated discussion going on
between two very knowledgeable guys!

Find out more and watch our sample training video.




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