Saturday, November 10, 2012

The dying of the light

The dying of the light may does not auger well for us poor mortals but it allows us to take very interesting photos. A prosaic place assumes surreal qualities that go a long way to make an interesting photos. here are a few shot in Venice a few years ago.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Archival scans / Sill life shots

Kodak Ecktachrome X

GAF Anscocolor 200

Kodak Kodachrome II

Kodak Ektachrome 200
All these slide scans from different films date back to the seventies. It is amazing how the color has held up. Only slight digital touch us was needed in order to bring back the colors to a semblance of the originals. Yet the glorious original colors are really gone. Too bad.

Great News

A Great Victory For Canadian Photographers

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November 7, 2012

OTTAWA, November 7, 2012: At last, Canadian photographers own their copyright.

The Canadian Association of Professional Image Creators (CAPIC) would like to congratulate all Canadian photographers in Canada on this important date and pivotal achievement in the photographic industry. As of today, Canadian photographers now officially own the copyright to all of their work whether the photograph is commissioned or not, thanks to the new Copyright law.

The principle of protecting photographers' ownership rights started 65 years ago by Henri Cartier-Bresson, who founded Magnum with Robert Capa and David Seymour. Magnum assured that a photographer's image belonged to the photographer and not to the commissioner of the work.

In Canada, all other artists have already owned the copyrights to their work and thanks to this new law, Canadian photographers, albeit the last in the industrialized world, now have all legal rights to their images.

CAPIC has been working towards this monumental achievement in Canada for more than 20 years through lobbying efforts and could not have achieved this truly important mission without the support of its members, who have contributed financially, morally and offered countless volunteer hours towards this major effort led by CAPIC National Copyright Chair, Andre Cornellier.

The Professional Photographers of Canada (PPOC) were a valuable partner in this achievement as well as the lobbying firm Temple Scott Associates for their work in Ottawa.

''I would like to thank the team that worked so patiently and for so long,'' commented Cornellier. ''Finally we have won a right due to us as artists. Thank you to Canadian photographers across the country for your support and patience and to André Amyot and Brian Boyle of PPOC for your work. It has been worth it.''

CAPIC will be providing more information on the direct effects of the law for Canadian photographers in the week to come as we celebrate this important Canadian achievement.

For more information:
André Cornellier
Copyright Chair
CAPIC, The Canadian Association of Professional Image Creators

Congratulations are in order

I realize that these congratulations are  bit tardy  due to Sandy et. al. But I must congratulate the President on his re election. BUT I  must also offer congratulations to the Nation for an un-eventual election free from recriminations and dissension. The people have spoken. It's time to resume life without all those annoying commercials and puerile  assertions by so called pundits. I keep politics out of this blog since they are inappropriate but this is a worthy exception.

Adobe news

Adobe has issued a 'release candidate' version of Lightroom 4.3 and Adobe Camera Raw 7.3, including support for 13 additional cameras. The Mac version of Lightroom features a Develop module that supports Apple's HiDPI mode that makes the interface easier to read on the 'Retina' panels used on recent Macs. The latest versions are available for download from the Adobe Labs website and, as the 'release candidate' tag denotes, are well tested but could benefit from some user feedback before finalized.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Vintage street photography

New York, in front of the old Plaza Hotel

Central Park, Sunday afternoon

New York, Fifth Avenue

New York, Central Park

New York, Fifth Avenue
Street photography has always been the holy grail of photography. That is it shows the photographer's ability to capture a moment in time. It naturally takes into account the whole concept of the decisive moment. It really is one of the more difficult areas of photography. Here are a few examples from my younger days when I was more dedicated to this type of work.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

No interestiong light, no interesting pictures

Erice, Sicily

Erice, Sicily

Erice, Sicily

Erice, Sicily

Salemi, Sicily

Salemi, Sicily
I hate to say it's the light stupid as I find this somewhat rude but it hits the spot. If photography captures nature just as is it becomes an unnecessary bore. One must create the shot by manipulating the image seen by the eye and pre visualizing it as the final photograph. Therefore, the more unusual the light, the more unreal, the better the photo gets.  Here are some example that I hope you like. All shot in Sicily with my trusted and capable Olympus E PL-2.

Old archival favorites, Quebec City

These are some of my favorite photos shot on slide film. It's a new series of posts highlighting some of the photos that I have deemed best. They are worth re posting, I believe.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Seasonal stuff

It's that time of the year when fall's splendor gives way to winter's dread leaving some vestigial traces of it's dying beauty. How ephemeral the seasons are.
BTW, I hope that your favorite candidates win.

Two new lenses from Canon

Progress marches on in the lens area. In this digital world it's the lenses that remain after the new and improved new cameras come out and the old cameras lose their value. So one should get the best that one can afford. Here are two great examples. They are not cheap but will hold their value for years.

Canon Adds Two New Lenses to Their EF Line-up

Canon_EF-24-70mm_F4L_IS-USM_550.jpgHold  the presses, Canon USA has just unveiled two new additions to their EF line of EOS dSLR lenses; both of which are claimed to be professional quality glass. First up is the EF 24-70mm f/4L IS USM, which boasts an appealing range when coupled with one of their full-frame EOS cameras; like the EOS-1D X, EOS 6D, EOS 5D Mark III, or the EOS 5D Mark II. On top of sporting the L label, this new unit also boasts their proven built-in Hybrid optical image stabilization system, a USM (Ultrasonic) AF motor, and macro abilities with a minimum focusing distance of 7.9-inches at 70mm. All for about $1499 USD.

Canon_EF-35mm-F2-IS-USM_550.jpgNext, they uncovered an new 35mm prime lens, the EF 35mm f/2 IS USM. This lens offers a classic focal view when matched to a full frame model, with a fast maximum aperture of f/2. It also untilizes Canon's OIS system, and their fast USM AF motor. This one is marketed as being compact and lightweight, while still offering superb image quality. You can snag the new 35mm lens for about $849 USD.

Both models are scheduled to hit dealer's shelves next month (December, 2012). See the official press release below for more details about both lenses.


Canon U.S.A. "Widens" Its offerings and "Zooms In" on Creative Optics With the introduction of TWO new Professional lenses

LAKE SUCCESS, N.Y., November 5, 2012 -- Canon U.S.A., Inc., a leader in digital imaging solutions, today announced two new additions to the Company's EF lens family, the new EF 24-70mm f/4L IS USM and EF 35mm f/2 IS USM lenses. Each of these two lenses features unique optical attributes for a variety of situations.  The new EF 24-70mm f/4L IS USM has macro shooting capabilities at the telephoto end and the EF 35mm f/2 IS USM adds Canon's proprietary Image Stabilization (IS) to this popular prime lens focal length.
"The lens is the window to creativity, providing the unique perspective and vantage that allows photographers to turn a scene into art. It is our pleasure to introduce two lenses that will enable a wide range of photographers in diverse disciplines to explore their creativity through these new options," said Yuichi Ishizuka, executive vice president and general manager, Imaging Technologies & Communications Group, Canon U.S.A.
Canon EF 24-70mm f/4L IS USM Lens
Featuring dynamic L-series optical performance in a compact, lightweight and durable design, the new EF 24-70mm f/4L IS USM lens is well suited for all levels of advanced photography on the go. The ideal companion to Canon's full-frame Digital SLR cameras such as the EOS 6D, the lens features a constant maximum aperture of f/4 throughout the entire zoom range with 15 lens elements in 12 groups including two aspherical and two UD lens elements and a 9-blade circular aperture diaphragm. The EF 24-70mm f/4L IS USM lens delivers gorgeous images with excellent detail at all focal lengths and includes a macro feature at the telephoto end with a 0.2m/7.9-inch minimum focusing distance and Canon's Hybrid IS system (with up to four stops of stabilization). The macro feature can be engaged through a switch on the lens barrel. In addition, the lens features inner focusing and a ring-type Ultrasonic Motor (USM) for quiet, fast autofocus, and has full-time mechanical manual focus that's enabled even during AF operation. Compact at only 93mm in length, with excellent dust and water resistance, the EF 24-70mm f/4L IS USM lens has a fluorine coating on the front and rear elements for easy maintenance and cleaning.
The EF 24-70mm f/4L IS USM lens is supplied with a lens pouch and reversible lens hood. It is expected to be available in December for an approximate retail price of $1,499.00.
Canon Standard Prime Lens with Optical Image Stabilizer: EF 35mm f/2 IS USM Lens
The successor to Canon's EF 35mm f/2, the EF 35mm f/2 IS USM lens is a compact and lightweight wide-angle prime lens that provides a high level of image quality and functionality. The optics and mechanical workings are designed to improve image quality in the lens's periphery and provide faster and quieter AF than its predecessor, as well as Optical IS and optional full-time manual focus, all in a durable lens body with a high-grade design. Featuring a circular aperture diaphragm and lens coatings optimized for minimal ghosting and flare, the EF 35mm f/2 IS USM lens achieves beautiful, soft backgrounds and amazing image quality.
The EF 35mm f/2 IS USM lens is expected to be available in December for an approximate retail price of $849.99.

About Canon U.S.A., Inc.                                                      
Canon U.S.A., Inc., is a leading provider of consumer, business-to-business, and industrial digital imaging solutions. With approximately $45.6 billion in global revenue, its parent company, Canon Inc. (NYSE:CAJ), ranks third overall in U.S. patents registered in 2011† and is one of Fortune Magazine's World's Most Admired Companies in 2012. In 2012, Canon U.S.A. has received the Readers' Choice Award for Service and Reliability in the digital camera and printer categories for the ninth consecutive year, and for camcorders for the past two years. Canon U.S.A. is committed to the highest level of customer satisfaction and loyalty, providing 100 percent U.S.-based consumer service and support for all of the products it distributes. Canon U.S.A. is dedicated to its Kyosei philosophy of social and environmental responsibility. To keep apprised of the latest news from Canon U.S.A., sign up for the Company's RSS news feed by visiting
†Based on weekly patent counts issued by United States Patent and Trademark Office.
All referenced product names, and other marks, are trademarks of their respective owners.
Availability, prices, and specifications of all products are subject to change without notice.  Actual prices are set by individual dealers and may vary.

Fall colors

This shot is from nearby Juniper Valley Park in Queens, NYC. You do not have to go far from home to capture something of interest.

Photoshop Competitor.

The number of competitors to Photo shop is staggering, I personally use Elements and Lightroom as I find them more than sufficient for my needs, As a matter of fact Lightroom is indispensable. This package appears to be economical and a very good buy if it performs as advertised. We shall see.

OnOne Introduces Perfect Photo Suite 7

Photo Suite.jpg OnOne has announced that Perfect Photo Suite 7 is now available; It includes a great deal of "Perfect" new software, isuch as Perfect B&W, Perfect Effects 4, Perfect Portrait 2, Perfect Layers 3 and Perfect Resize 7.5 Pro. Included you will get  FocalPoint 2 and an improved version of Perfect Mask 5.2.

If you're wondering about buying or upgrading to Photo Suite 7, you'll find plenty of video tutorials at OnOne U that take you through the new features and give you insight into just what you can do with the software suite. 

Perfect Photo Suite 7 is available for $299, and  those who have Perfect Photo Suite 6, Perfect Photo Suite 5.5, or Plug-In Suite 5 or earlier can get it up for $149. If you buy it up before November 15th you'll get Premium Preset Pak1 for free.

Too early for spring..not on your life..

It's never the wrong time to think about spring and after all, it's spring in the southern hemisphere. We who live in the north get quite north hemisphere centric at times. So just a few photos to take us back to those mild days of pure enchantment. These photos were shot at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden, a true wonder all by itself. It has something to offer in every season but in spring it truly shows off all it's wonders.

And please do not forget to vote

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Have a great week

External view of the castle this past June. It's a must photo stop for weddings.

More interior shots of the Castle

Looking out to the bay

Meeting and convention hall

 One of the exhibit halls

Exhibit all detail
Here's a few more shots of this truly amazing place. The interiors are truly magnificently re done.

Have a great Tuesday, may it take you where you want to go

Graphic shots

I use black and white seldom nowadays having been convinced that nature has colors and color is best. I realize that this is anathema to those who still shoot black and white especially the film shooters but I really have no time for such pseudo intellectual artsy nonsense. But at times, rendering a photo into a graphic will work best in black and white,

Here are some building in Castellammare awaiting gentrification and its concomitant  re structuring.