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Category Archives: Cameras

Technology Threatens Camera Manufacturers

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Joe Murphy Lens Adapters

Joe Murphy’s 3D printed lens adapters

I found an interesting article today. Photographer Joe Murphy has manufactured his own tilt-shift lens adapter using a 3D printer. I paid over $2,000 for my Canon 24mm tilt-shift lens. I doubt I would have done that if I were able to do what Joe Murphy did. Add to that, the designs are available for anyone to download and use for free.

This brings up issues I was discussing with a friend a few weeks back. 3D printing is very expensive now. When home printers first came into being, they were expensive too. It didn’t take long before the prices dropped to an affordable level. This will happen with 3D printers as well.

What does this mean? Well, there’s good news and bad news. The good news is that the average person will be able to manufacture equipment at home for a fraction of the cost of buying it from a large company. I can see this happening with all sorts of things: table ware such as plates and utensils, car parts, belts, and even camera equipment. Imagine you have the misfortune of breaking a piece of your expensive camera lens. No worries, just print a replacement part. Need to add a bottle holder for your gear bag? Whip one out in a flash and add it on. The possibilities are endless.

What’s the bad news?  Camera companies may lose sales because anyone will be able to copy their designs and print them out. Manufacturing jobs may shrink due to lost sales. Granted, the size of printing is limited to the size of the 3D printer, and the material may not be a good as that used by say, Canon, but technology will catch up in that regard too. The future looks quite intriguing.

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Great Deals on Think Tank Photo Bags

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Think Tank Photo Bag

Hi Photo Friends,

If you are in the market for a new photo gear bag, Think Tank, is offering some great special deals. In my opinion, they are the best gear bag company out there.

Click this link for free shipping.

Click this link for a rebate on the Airport 4-Sight bag.

Click this link to register in the drawing for a free Think Tank product.

Photojournalists Using Instagram

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Benjamin Lowy's iPhone image of the destruction of Superstorm Sandy. © Benjamin Lowy/reportage by Getty Images

Benjamin Lowy’s iPhone image of the destruction of Superstorm Sandy. © Benjamin Lowy/reportage by Getty Images

There’s a trend forming. Photojournalists are now using Instagram and their smart phones to report everything from deadly storms to war to professional sports.

This brings up many questions. Photojournalism has long been about integrity, honesty and clarity. Will the one-click editing filters and ability to manipulate the images make them less believable? Is our world so hungry for quick information that we are willing to sacrifice quality? Is the job of a photojournalist becoming extinct?

There’s an intriguing article in American Photo Magazine about this situation. It’s worth the read. Benjamin Lowy, one of the photojournalists I curated into my exhibit “Wide Angle View” at the Orange County Center for Contemporary Art in 2011, uses an iPhone. He is giving a talk at the Annenberg Space for Photography in Los Angeles on April 18, 2012. I am going and am very interested in what he has to say about the drastic changes in visual reporting.

Our world is speeding faster than ever. We need to keep up, but at what cost? I’d love to hear your thoughts on this.

Canon Is Developing 35mm CMOS Sensor For Video

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Canon is developing a new 35mm full frame CMOS sensor dedicated to video. It has 7 1/2 times more surface area than the current top-of-the-line Canon CMOS sensor. Read about the new capabilities, including low light improvements at this link.

New Mirrorless Camera From Canon, The EOS-M

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The New Canon EOS-M mirrorless camera.

Big news. Canon has announced its answer to the competition from other manufacturers of mirrorless cameras. It’s called the EOS-M. It boasts 18 MP, a 22 mm f/2 STM lens, a 3″ clear view LCD screen, Canon’s DIGIC 5 Image Processor, ultra-fast focusing is delivered via the Hybrid CMOS AF system. ISO’s from 100-12800 and expands to 25600. State of the art video, and much more are packed into this interchangeable lens camera.

Two M series lenses are available. The 22mm f/2 STM lens is included in this kit. The 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 can be purchased for USD $299.  The new EF-M mount on the this camera is able to use any Canon EF and EF-S lenses with the optional EF-EOS Mount Adapter.

18-55mm lens

Canon has a new Speedlight flash made for the EOS-M. This compact and lightweight flash has enough coverage for use with a 24mm lens.  It can act as a master for other flashes.

The EOS-M is available for pre-order now. Expected deliver date is October 15, 2012, and estimated price is $799 USD.

If you are looking for a compact interchangeable lens camera, Canon is your answer.

 

John Steinbeck Quote About Photography

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John Steinbeck

I hate cameras.  They are so much more sure than I am about everything. 

~John Steinbeck, February 27, 1902 – December 20, 1968

American author of Grapes of Wrath, Of Mice and Men, the Pearl, East of Eden, and more classics of the Great Depression era.

Quick Camera Tip #1: Using Your Camera’s Level Guide

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Example of an electronic level on a Canon PowerShot G1X

There are many times you need to have a shot exactly level. For instance, architectural shots or landscapes with a defined horizon line. Eyeballing is not very accurate.

How many times have you been excited to take some wonderful shots only to view them in your computer and finding they are off-balance? No problem, you may say, I’ll fix it in PhotoShop. Well, sure that can be done, but if you are like me and carefully compose your images, the PhotoShop fix will force you to cut off much of your image. You might lose an important element such as the person in the corner of the shot that anchored the whole image.

There’s a simple tool that guarantees you a perfectly level shot and it is very easy to use. If you own a newer model digital camera, you most likely have a built-in electronic level. You can use them when you hand hold your camera, or when placed on a tripod. All you have to do is line up the moving marker to the center point on your level bar.

Each camera has a different way to get to the electronic level. Look in your owner’s manual to find it and have it show up while you are shooting.

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