Page 1

News Tests Clubs

Exhibitions

Techniques

Interviews

Competitions

Reviews

Photography Produced by

Issue 48 11 Sept – 12 Oct

news

Celebrate 30 years of the DLR All aboard the DLR for a 12-hour photo marathon. Page 24

Your FREE newspaper packed with the latest news, views and stories from the world of photography

First tests

Lighting academy

Turn to page 38 for this month’s latest kit on test

All the latest kit is in our new series. Check it out on page 20

GET YOUR

FREE DIGITAL EDITION every month*

*at photographynews.co.uk

WIN!

A Samsung 128GB memory card

Enter the competition on page 48

The Nikon D850 has landed Nikon’s newest and much anticipated full-frame D850 is in the shops now. With the highest megapixel count yet seen on a Nikon, the D850 could be the ultimate camera for the quality conscious Nikon’s full-frame D850 is an awesome combination of high resolution, fast shooting speed and startlingly high ISO performance giving it a very broad appeal. At its heart is a new FX sensor, a backside illuminated (BSI) design which is optical low-pass filter-free, with a resolution of 45.7 megapixels, resulting in images measuring 8256x5504 pixels. This is the first time a BSI sensor has been used in a Nikon DSLR and together with the EXPEED 5 processor, it gives a native ISO range of 64 to 25,600 – expandable to ISO 32 and 102,400. Full-frame continuous shooting at 7fps is available; if you want more, add the optional MB-D18 Multi-power Battery Grip and you get up to 9fps. Shooting full-frame Raws, the D850’s large buffer allows continuous shooting of up to 51 shots – although not specified, this is probably with an XQD card. There are two card slots, one XQD and one SD. There is no SD card only option. The D850’s body price is £3499.99 and the MB-D18 is £369.99. nikon.co.uk For more details and a hands-on report, turn to page 3

A feast from Fujifilm Fujifilm has introduced the ultracompact X-E3 in its X Series mirrorless camera range. Despite its petite body form, this 24.3-megapixel APS-C camera has an impressive array of features including the option of viewfinder or touchscreen monitor operation, 4K video shooting and Bluetooth. See page 4 for more


Photography News | Issue 48 | photographynews.co.uk


3

Photography News | Issue 48 | photographynews.co.uk

News

The Nikon D850 has landed

Nikon was lagging behind rivals Canon and Sony in the high megapixel full-frame camera race so the D850 is an important launch for the brand and certainly one many Nikon devotees have been waiting for. With its impressive specification, the D850 is very likely to appeal to photographers of all genres and moviemakers. The FX-format 35.9x23.9mm sensor is the first backside illuminated sensor (BSI) found in a Nikon DSLR. This is a key factor in the D850’s excellent high ISO performance for such a high megapixel sensor with even the top native speed of ISO 25,600 capable of impressive quality. Resolution is maximised because the sensor is optical low-pass filter-free. The D850 can shoot at 7fps (9fps with the optional MB-D18 battery grip) and the large buffer enables a burst of 51 full-size Raws. The camera has two card slots, one SD and the other XQD. On occasions when you might want the editing flexibility of Raws but without going for full-size Raws, the

D850 gives the option of shooting Medium Raws (25.6 megapixels) and Small Raws (11.4 megapixels) – in these instances you get 12-bit lossless compressed files. The D850 has the option of an electronic shutter for silent shooting. This you get with live view and 6fps shooting and the files are still full-size Raws. In DX format for 8.6-megapixel files you get 30fps for three seconds. The 3.2in, 2359k dot monitor shows 100% of the image area and is tiltable for low-down or overhead shooting (in horizontal format). The D850’s AF system is the same as that found in the Nikon D5 flagship and features 153 selectable points of which 99 are cross-type and it has a sensitivity down to -4EV. The AF system also supports good performance with slower aperture lenses. You get 15 AF points with lenses of f/8 maximum aperture and 37 with lenses of f/5.6-8.

Specs

Add features such as weather sealing, an 180k pixel RGB metering sensor and excellent shooting capacity with around 1840 shots from the EN-EL15a battery and you have a formidable full-frame camera. The D850’s body price is £3499.99 and the MB-D18 grip is £369.99. A test will appear in the next PN. nikon.co.uk

“We are very happy with the D850 and the feedback we are getting from photographers who have already used it,” says Tim Carter, Nikon UK’s senior product manager (above). “It is a fantastic marriage of high resolution and high speed – you no longer have to choose between the two, and having all of that in a small form factor body makes the D850 a versatile camera for all types of photography.”

Hands on with Will Cheung At the London launch of the Nikon D850, which took place at Loft Studios, we got the chance to use the camera in four different scenarios that reflected the product’s potential markets. So there were set-ups for action, nature, weddings and low-light editorial shooting, each scenario overseen by Nikon ambassadors. For action it was Tom Miles, Richard Peters for nature, Ross Harvey for weddings and Amy Shore for low-light. We got to shoot with available light and with Profoto studio flash. The pictures shown here were taken on production cameras at the event and are straight out-of-the-camera fine quality JPEGs. Full size Raws were shot simultaneously, but no processing software was available at the time of writing and there was no time to test the camera’s Raw processing skills. I like shooting at high ISOs and I was keen to try the D850’s backside illuminated sensor (BSI) at its higher speeds so I shot plenty at ISO 6400, 12,800 and 25,600. Looking at the JPEG images on screen at 100% I am very impressed with the ISO 3200 and 6400 shots which exhibited minimal noise and any noise present had virtually no impact on fine details. With the Raws and some noise reduction in post-processing I am seeing great potential here. The same thing applies to the ISO 12,800 and 25,600 shots where detail still looks good, although here on my shots there is artefacting. However, that is no surprise – this is a high resolution sensor so you expect some payback.

Price £3499.99 body only Sensor 35.9x23.9mm FX format 45.7-megapixel BIS CMOS, EXPEED 5 image processor ISO range 64-25,600 native – expansion up to ISO 32 and 102,400 Shutter range 30secs to 1/8000sec, flash sync at 1/250sec Drive modes Continuous high at 7fps Metering system RGB sensor with 180k pixels Monitor 3.2in 2359k dots, tilting touch sensitive screen with 100% coverage Focusing Multi-CAM 20k AF sensor, 153 focus point, 99 cross type. Single point, 9, 25, 72 or 153 Video 3840x2160 (4K, UHD) Storage media 1x XQD, 1x SD Dimensions (wxhxd) 146x124x78.5mm Weight 1005g body, battery and card Contact nikon.co.uk

Back among the more typical ISO settings (the lowest I managed was 200), image quality was excellent with lots of fine detail, good tonal range and lively contrast. For the wedding shot here the camera was fitted with a 24-70mm f/2.8 lens. By window light, the exposure was 1/60sec at f/2.8, ISO 400. As you can see from the enlargement (bottom) of the top image, there’s plenty of detail and the skin tones were beautifully smooth. I did a continuous shooting sequence of the couple too. That is a lot of information to deal with and even though I was using a fairly fast 90MB/s Samsung Micro SD card the camera’s record LED stayed on for a while. Buy a D850 for continuous shooting and you will need very fast SD cards or better still XQD cards for the fastest performance. Press a DSLR’s shutter release button and you get the usual noise accompanying the reflex mirror and shutter opening/closing action. Well, not so on the D850 if you select the electronic quiet shutter. With this you get live view shooting and the shutter can be fired with the release as normal or by using touchscreen AF. Using a quiet shutter is disconcerting at first, but there is a clear benefit and the D850’s worked well, and that included the touch AF too. We will be fully testing the D850 in the next issue, but there is no doubt that based on this initial acquaintance the signs are very promising. How the AF and exposure fare in more real situations we will soon see, and already I am impressed with what the D850 is potentially capable of.


4

Photography News | Issue 48 | photographynews.co.uk

News

Busy Canon Canon has announced new arrivals in several product categories, including cameras, lenses and printers. In its premium L-series lens range we have three tilt-shift lenses and a portrait lens, namely the TS-E 50mm f/2.8L Macro, the 90mm f/2.8 Macro, the TS-E 135mm f/4L Macro and the EF 85mm f/1.4L IS USM. The EF 85mm f/1.4L IS USM has been created with people photography in mind. It features a 14 element in 10 group design, an electromagnetic diaphragm and wide f/1.4 aperture to produce a nice bokeh effect. Fast and accurate autofocusing can be achieved thanks to Canon’s renowned ultrasonic motor. The EF 85mm f/1.4L IS USM will be available from November with a suggested price of £1569.99. The TS-E 50mm and TS-E 90mm tilt-shift lenses replace the current TS-E 45mm f/2.8 and TS-E 90mm f/2.8 lens, while the TS-E 135mm f/4L Macro sees the introduction of

tilt-shift for a longer focal length. All three lenses have a suggested price of £2499.99 and will be available from November 2017. In its mirrorless camera range, Canon has added the EOS M100, replacing the EOS M10. This compact camera is ideal for vloggers who want to record videos and photos, and share them to their social channels; thanks to its flip-up screen you can also easily take selfies. Its design makes it small enough to fit in a pocket and it also features a touchscreen. For those who need a little help when shooting, the EOS M100 features on-screen guides. The EOS M100 will be available from October 2017 as body only for £449.99, or three kit options: the EOS M100 plus EF-M 15-45mm f/3.5-6.3 IS STM for £569.99; EOS M100 plus EF-M 15-45mm f/3.5-6.3 IS STM and EF-M 22mm f/2 STM for £699.99; or the EOS M100 plus EF-M 15-45mm f/3.56.3 IS STM and EF-M 55-200mm f/4.56.3 IS STM for £769.99.

News in brief

Finally, in its PIXMA range, Canon has announced four new printers: the PIXMA TS5150, TS6150, TS8150 and the TS9150. Each printer enables you to wirelessly print top quality prints and documents at home, and also offers double-sided printing. With built-in LCD screens you can easily adjust settings and select which images or documents you would like to print. canon.co.uk

A feast from Fujifilm Fujifilm has added an ultra-compact model to its range of mirrorless X Series cameras. Like its bigger brethren, the X-E3 features Fujifilm’s X-Trans CMOS III APS-C sensor and X-Processor Pro image processing engine for great image quality and impressive high ISO performance. The high-speed processing engine makes the camera very responsive, with a 0.4sec start-up time, shutter lag of a mere 0.05sec and 5fps live view shooting. AF is handled by a large phase-detection area with an improved algorithm for super-fast accurate AF – even with moving subjects. The compact body features an OLED viewfinder as well as a three-inch, 1040k dot monitor, which has touch functionality, including for focusing, shooting and image review. It is also the first X Series camera to use Bluetooth for power efficient image sharing possibilities. The X-E3 will be available from 28 September with a price of £849 body only, £1149 with the 23mm f/2 or £1249 with the 18-55mm f/2.8-4. An X-E3 metal hand grip costs £119 while a case is £74.99. Of course, the X-E3 is fully compatible with Fujifilm’s huge lens collection, which has grown by one with the announcement of the XF80mm f/2.8 LM OIS WR Macro. It is the first midtelephoto macro lens in the X Series system that offers life-size magnification. Its design features 16 elements in 12 groups, including one aspherical lens, one Super ED lens, and three ED lenses. Despite all that advanced, high-quality glass this lens is lightweight and handheld shooting is supported by Fujifilm’s optical mage stabiliser system, designed to supress shift shake and offers a 5EV benefit.

Autofocusing is handled by a linear motor for fast, silent operation while the provision of an innovative Floating Focus system and a Ball Slide system helps ensure great accuracy and high performance. The lens is also weather resistant, and the front and rear elements are fluorine coated in order to repel water and make surfaces less susceptible to pesky smudges. This lens will be available from November at a price of £1249. Fujifilm’s medium-format GFX system has also gained a new lens. The GF45mm f/2.8 R WR is the sixth lens in the range and is a compact lens with a really useful moderate wide-angle focal length – equivalent to 36mm in the 35mm format. The lens weighs in at just 490g, so makes a portable combination with the GFX body; the lens is dust and weather resistant, too, matching the camera. The GF45mm f/2.8 R WR will be available in November, priced at £1699. Finally, Fujifilm has news of software and firmware. Starting with software, available from late November, there is Fujifilm X Raw Studio, a Raw processing software that works when the camera is connected up to the computer via a USB cable. Firmware updates for the X-T2 and X-T20 will be available from late November and for the X-Pro2 and X100F from late December. A raft of improvements are on offer, including support for X Raw Studio and improved AF tracking. In the case of the X-Pro2 4K video will be possible; on the X-T20 it will be possible to use touch operation while the eye is to the viewfinder. fujifilm.eu/uk

400 GB SD card Western Digital has announced the world’s highest capacity Micro SD card. The SanDisk Ultra microSDXC UHS-1 card has a capacity pf 400GB. UK price is £224.99. WD also announced the SanDisk iXpand Base. Available in sizes from 32GB to 256GB and prices from £53.99 to £176.99, this handy and compact accessory will back up your iPhone images and data while recharging. The unit has a soft rubber top to place the phone onto and there is a wraparound groove to hold the Lightning cable. sandisk.com Sony support Sony pro camera users can enjoy a walk-in service at Fixation’s London base rather than sending faulty kit to Sony’s plant in Wales. Fixation is based at Unit C, 250 Kennington Lane, London SE11 5RD. fixationuk.com Hasselblad update The X1D-50c has had a firmware update, now giving an electronic shutter with a top 1/10,000sec speed and the ability to resize AF points. hasselblad.com Billy the tripod 3 Legged Thing has launched the Billy carbon-fibre tripod system. Weighing just 1.38kg, it is 3LT’s lightest-ever tripod but its design and top quality build means it can support 13 times its own weight. It features four section legs (one of which is detachable for use as a monopod), a working height of 1.65m and a minimum height of 100mm thanks to its removable and reversible centre column. 3leggedthing.com


Photography News | Issue 48 | photographynews.co.uk


6

Photography News | Issue 48 | photographynews.co.uk

News

Head to Liverpool for the biggest Digital Splash ever

Digital Splash is the fastest growing consumer photography show in the north of England and this year takes place on 7 and 8 October. When David Parkinson, managing director of award-winning independent retailer Wilkinson Cameras and mastermind behind Digital Splash, set out to create an inspiring show for photographers across the north, he was totally unaware of the huge success that would follow. “Our holistic approach is so much more than just selling cameras – our mission is to be with photographers every step of the way,” says David. “The show will have all the latest hardware on show with all the top brands exhibiting, with their own teams on hand for photographers to pick their brains. There’s the opportunity to try before you buy, which is crucial when making a significant investment.” Now in its eighth year, the show has grown substantially year on year – with more than 6200 visitors through the door last October. David’s

experienced and passionate team live and breathe photography all year round, with the Digital Splash show the culmination of a lot of planning, hard work and dedication. David continues: “The growth of the show has been phenomenal and the step up to our new Liverpool location has raised the event to yet another level and scale. The purposebuilt venue boasts the best show facilities available – with full highdefinition theatres, great exhibition space, easy access, parking and accommodation nearby. You can even get a decent coffee at a reasonable price! “Also, based in the heart of such a vibrant city, the location is a photographer’s dream, with a melting pot of spectacular architecture both old and new, street photography galore, plus endless urban landscapes and ‘big skies’ across the water.” digitalsplash.tv

Splash 2017 has an actionpacked line-up of great talks and workshops, walks and exhibitions. Here are some of the highlights: Paul Gallagher and Michael Pilkington of Aspect2i photography tours will be talking landscapes, black & white photography and sharing their top post-processing and printing tips. Jeff Ascough, Kate Hopewell Smith and Brent Kirkman will be talking all things weddings and portraits. Fujifilm X-Photographer Elke Vogelsang will share the secrets of her dog portraits. David Lindo, The Urban Birder, will be looking to the skies to share his inspiring photography with bird lovers. Astro whizz Alyn Wallace will take us stargazing with his amazing night sky images, explaining how to literally take photography to another level. Fujifilm X-Photographer Paul Sanders will look at how Mother Nature can often give you ‘what you need, rather than what you want’.

Where and when Digital Splash takes place at the Exhibition Centre Liverpool on 7 and 8 October. You can currently register for free entry, and tickets for seminars and photo walks are on sale now at digitalsplash.tv/ speakers/ Register for the show and Wilkinson Cameras will send you a voucher to enjoy 10% off any talk tickets purchased.

E-M10 MkIII

The latest addition to Olympus’s Micro Four Thirds collection is the E-M10 Mark III, due to go on sale from mid-September with a body price of £629.99. Go for the camera with the M.Zuiko Digital 14-42mm f/3.5-5.5II R standard zoom and it’s just £20 more. With typically stylish good looks, compact size and feature rich, the E-M10 Mark III is sure to find wide appeal, especially among those who want a high performing camera that is light and small. The upgrades from the Mark II to Mark III aren’t that great, but they are potentially significant. The 4/3in Live MOS sensor is the same in both cameras and boasts 16.1 megapixels, but in the Mark III it is now linked with Olympus’s latest image processor, the TruePic VIII. To help get the sharpest possible pictures with slower shutter speeds, the Mark III has 5-axis image stabilisation, a feature that has proved itself very effective on other Olympus cameras. There is also an Advanced Photo mode that helps photographers enjoy features such as Live Composite without having to venture into the camera’s menu. The autofocus system is worth a mention. It now features 121 AF points – up from 81 on the Mark  II – covering most of the image area so you can pinpoint focus on almost any part of a scene. There are the usual refinements of face and eye detection. Other notable features include: a top 8.6fps shooting speed, a mechanical shutter with a 60secs to 1/4000sec range, a silent electronic shutter of 30secs to 1/16,000sec, Wi-Fi and a range of Art filters. The E-M10 Mark III will be tested in Photography News as soon as samples permit. olympus.co.uk

Enjoy city life your picture showing an aspect of city (town or village) life. Only one image per entry is allowed and only UK residents can enter. Judging will be done by PN’s editor and the closing date is 11.59pm, 9 October 2017. For full terms and conditions please see photographynews.co.uk. The winner of last month’s contest for best coastline image was won by David Jenner. To enter (it’s free) visit photographynews. co.uk/win, click on the LumeJet competition and submit your entry.

© Will Cheung

Photography News has teamed up with expert photo printers LumeJet to bring you the chance of seeing your favourite photographs produced as a glorious L.Type prints. Win this free-toenter contest and you will have £200 to spend on L.Type prints from the LumeJet website. L.Type by LumeJet is the latest step in the company’s development and represents the culmination of over 15 years of research into silver halide. LumeJet has always been passionate about printing beautiful photography and now with L.Type, the fusion of classic analogue silver halide materials, cutting–edge digital print technology and super-accurate colour management enables the faithful replication of a photographic vision with hitherto unseen precision and sensitivity. To be in with the chance of winning £200 worth of L.Type prints all you have to do is enter


Photography News | Issue 48 | photographynews.co.uk


Photography News | Issue 48 | photographynews.co.uk


9

Photography News | Issue 48 | photographynews.co.uk

News

ThinkTank has it in the bag

Reliable storage from Samsung The Samsung Portable SSD T5 is the company’s very latest portable solid state drive. Four sizes are on offer. In blue you can choose between capacities of 250GB and 500GB at prices of £125.49 and £192.49 respectively. Opt for black and you can choose between capacities of 1TB and 2TB priced at £384.89 and £759.49 respectively.

All feature Samsung’s 64-layer V-NAND technology and offer impressive operating speeds, up to 540MB/s. Weighing just 51g and measuring 74x57.3x10.5mm, the SSD T5 is a very portable external hard drive and has the fast USB3.1 interface with backwards compatibility. samsung.com/T5

rotolight.com

snapperstuff.com

Laowa’s fast and wide Owners of Sony E-mount cameras will be interested in Laowa’s latest rectilinear ultrawide lens. The 15mm f/2 FE Zero-D is priced at £899 and its construction comprises 12 elements in nine groups with three extra low dispersion and two aspherical elements. This manual focus lens sports an impressively fast f/2 aperture, a 72mm accessory thread and is said to give very low distortion. Key benefits include its 500g low weight, close focusing down to 15cm and the option of a clicked or de-clicked aperture ring. ukdigital.co.uk

Get Professional Photo magazine SAVE

£1

Making a living with your camera sounds a dream job and if this is your ambition, then you need Professional Photo magazine. Issue 137 of the UK’s only monthly magazine for working and aspiring professionals is out now, offering insightful business and marketing advice from professionals and industry experts, gear reviews, lighting techniques and much more. Highlights in issue 137 include a hands-on report of Nikon’s newest (and very impressive) full-frame DSLR, the D850, a lighting masterclass from portrait photographer Tom Miles and a close look at the HMRC’s latest VAT changes. All this and more for just £4.75, and if you grab your copy from WHSmith, you can save £1 when you present this voucher.

To The Customer: Simply cut out this coupon and hand it to your WHSmith High Street retailer to claim your copy of Professional Photo for £3.75 instead of the usual £4.75. This coupon can be used as part payment for issue 136 or 137 of Professional Photo on sale between 17 August 2017 to 11 October 2017. Only one coupon can be used against each item purchased. No cash alternative is available. Not to be used in conjunction with any other offer. To the WHSmith Retailer: Please accept this voucher as part payment of one copy of Professional Photo on sale between 17 August 2017 to 11 October 2017. This voucher is worth £1 plus a 2p handling allowance. The offer is valid to the consumer up to 11 October 2017 and must be returned to your clearing house to arrive no later than 11 October 2017 (issue 136), 8 November (issue 137). As your shop belongs to a multiple group, please handle in the usual way. This voucher is not redeemable against any other item and is only valid in the UK.

Offer subject to availability and while stocks last

DO NOT MINT RETURN *This offer is subject to availability and is redeemable at WHSmith High Street Stores only. Excludes Outlet Stores, WHSmith Online, ‘Books by WHSmith’ at Selfridges, Harrods, Arnotts and Fenwicks stores, WHSmith ‘Local’ and all Travel Stores including those at airports, railways stations, motorway service stations, garden centres, hospitals and workplaces.

Rotolight has teamed up with Elinchrom to integrate its unique Skyport protocol across its product range, starting with the new NEO 2. This innovative high-speed flash sync and continuous LED lighting unit, which is designed for on-camera use, offers HSS up to 1/8000sec. Thanks to the collaboration with Elinchrom, the NEO 2 has an integrated Skyport 2.4GHz receiver so there is no need for an additional unit. Skyport enables wireless operation up to 200m and can control up to ten lights in four groups. It is compatible with most camera brands. The NEO 2 gives an amazing 85,000 full power flashes from one set of rechargeable AA batteries and is 85% brighter in continuous lighting mode compared with its predecessor. UK guide price is £249.99.

Another series to be upgraded is the popular StreetWalker backpacks. The V2.0 series features increased depth and dedicated tablet and smartphone pockets. The StreetWalker V2.0 costs £166, the Pro V2.0 is £194.99 and the HardDrive V2.0 is £223.99. These combine great capacity with comfort and practical usability, and suit urban as well as rural use. The family has also gained a new member, the Rolling Backpack V2.0 priced at £292. Drone owners aren’t neglected either, with four options: the Airport FPV Helipak at £199.99, Airport Helipak V2.0 at £199.99, Photo FPV Session at £149.99 and Airport TakeOff V2.0 at £359.99. Visit the SnapperStuff website or your local stockist (also found on the website) to check out all the new launches.

Cut out and take to your local WHSmith High Street store.

Rotolight and Elinchrom work together

Not a brand to do things by halves, photo bag specialist ThinkTank has announced a whole raft of new exciting products and range updates to image-makers of all levels and types. For shoulder use there are three bags in the Spectral range. The Spectral 8 is priced at £95, the Spectral 10 at £114 and the Spectral 15 at £133. Capacity wise, the 8 will take a DSLR and short zoom, while the 15 will hold a DSLR and several lenses. The 15 will also take a 15in laptop, while the others have tablet pockets. Another shoulder bag range, the Signature features two sizes, the 10 and the 13 priced at £244.99 and £269.99 respectively. Both are available in slate grey or dusty olive. ThinkTank’s TurnStyle sling bags have been upgraded to include a stabiliser strap. Three sizes of these V2.0 bags are on offer with 5 priced at £73, 10 at £82.99 and 20 at £97.99. All are available in charcoal or blue indigo.


10

Photography News | Issue 48 | photographynews.co.uk

News

Nice bins from Kenro

News in brief

A collection of six own-brand binoculars has been introduced by Kenro. There is something to suit all interests and each pair is competitively priced. The range starts with the ultra compact 10x25 KBNL101 priced at just £14.94 with the most expensive pair being the 10-30x60 zoom binos KNBL303 priced at £49.98. In between, are two pairs of opera glasses, the KNBL201 and 202, both priced at £25.98 and have a 3x25 range. Finally there are two standard pairs, the 10x50 KBNL301 at £34.98 and the 16x50 KNBL302 at £39.95.

Limited Pentax A limited edition silver version of the full-frame 36.4 megapixel Pentax K-1 has been announced. The kit is priced at £2149.99 and comes with the D-B26 battery grip, two D-L190 batteries and a metal hotshoe cover. It will be available from mid-September. Ricoh also launched the Theta V, a 360° camera, priced at £399.99 with availability from the end of September. ricoh.com

kenro.co.uk

© Tim Flach

A digital day with the RPS The RPS Digital Group is having its DI Expo event on 23 September so still time to book a place and all are welcome. The event is taking place at the Holiday Inn Birmingham Airport and is sponsored by several leading image brands including Epson, Fotospeed, Lee Filters and PermaJet. The event has learning as its core theme and during the day, which starts at 9am and finishes at 5pm, there will be five presentations from Paul Sanders (filters), David Clapp (architecture), Nick Turpin (street shooting), Gary Evans (high speed video) and Tim Flach (animal photography). There will also be practical studio portrait and flower photography sessions. There is also a chance to attend advisory sessions for the LRPS and ARPS distinctions but these need to be booked in advance. Tickets cost £35 for non RPS members, £30 to RPS members and £25 to RPS Digital image members.

Manfrotto get real Manfrotto has announced a dedicated range of products for creating virtual reality imagery. The 360° Virtual Reality range comprises bases, accessories and extension booms and priced from £29.95 to £634.95. Aimed at enthusiasts and pros the range of products mean you can tailor a set up to your particular needs and produce top quality creative results every time. The range of VR bases give stable support and are compact enough not to show in 360° shots, and the collection of accessories helps you take flawless shots while boom and arms help get you to the right position. A selection of 360° VR kits is available if you prefer convenience.

rps.org/digexpo

Manfrotto.co.uk

MindShift get Cross MindShift’s PhotoCross sling bags are designed to withstand the elements yet be comfortable to tote around all day long. Two sizes are on offer, the 10 and the 13, costing £110.26 and £124.75 respectively. Key features include weatherproof zips and materials,

waterproof bottom panel, pockets for tablets/laptops and tripod/ jacket carry straps. The PhotoCross 10 has a 7.5l volume and will take a full-frame DSLR with one or two lenses and a 10in tablet; or a mirrorless with three or five lenses with a tablet.

The bigger PhotoCross 13 has an 11l volume and will take a 13in laptop, plus a full-frame DSLR with up to three lenses. Both bags are available in carbon grey or orange ember. snapperstuff.com


Photography News | Issue 48 | photographynews.co.uk


12

Photography News | Issue 48 | photographynews.co.uk

Tell us your club’s latest news, email: clubnews@photography-news.co.uk

Clubs

Camera club news If your club has any news that you want to share with the rest of the world, this is the place for it. Your story might be about your club’s success in a contest, or a member’s personal achievements; it could be about a group outing you had recently or when the annual exhibition is on show. Any news is eligible for inclusion, so club publicity officers please take note of the submission guidelines and get your stories in

How to submit

Deadline for the next issue: 2 October 2017

We need words and pictures by 2 October 2017 for the next issue of Photography News, which will be available from 16 October 2017. Write your story in a Word document (400 words max). Please include contact details of the club, exhibition or event: website, meeting times, opening times, whatever is relevant. Images should be JPEGs, 2000 pixels on the longest dimension, any colour space, and image credits should be included. If the story is an exhibition or event, please send a picture from the exhibition (not the publicity poster) or one from the event. If it includes people, please identify them. Attach the Word document and JPEGs to an email and send to clubnews@photography-news.co.uk

© Martin Eves LRPS

On the streets Fareham & Porchester presents Damien Demolder and his talk Light and Life on the Streets. In it he explains his approach to street photography, and how he uses light and exposure to grab the attention of the viewer. The talk promises to be instructive as well as fun, and anyone attending will come away with plenty of new

concepts to think about, and a new way of looking at street photography. All are welcome at Portchester Parish Hall, Portchester PO16 9PY on 10 October at 7:30pm. The cost to non-members is £3. fpcc.org.uk © Damien Demolder

Heswall PS Heswall PS’s new season has restarted. The club, now in its 54th year, enjoys a varied syllabus including an excellent range of speakers and regular competitions. We also have a summer programme aimed at improving various skills, and we find that this is particularly beneficial for newer members.

Visitors and potential new members of all abilities can be assured of a warm welcome. Heswall meets on Friday evenings at St Peters Centre, Lower Heswall Village, Wirral CH60 0DZ. The admission fee includes light refreshments. heswallphotosoc.co.uk

New Suffolk club Captured Moments Photographic Club is a new club based in Hadleigh, Suffolk, started by Carl Leach. “At present we have eight members and I hope to grow it to about 10,” says Carl. “We meet once a month on a Thursday evening. We don’t charge unless our tutors require payment and then we split with whoever is there at the time.” The next meeting is at 7pm on 5 or 12 October, at Crabtrees, 66 High Street. For more details, contact Carl on capturedmomentsphotographicclub@outlook.com

© Chris Cartlidge

Cannock PS on the move share in the wealth of experience and expertise of current members, through friendly weekly meetings, workshops and social events arranged throughout the season. cannockps.co.uk © Ade North

Cannock PS’s new meeting place is at Norton Canes Community Centre, Brownhills Road, Norton Canes, Cannock WS11 9SF. Meetings are on Thursday from 8pm. The club is holding its 60th annual exhibition in November 2017 and to celebrate, the club is re-launching to take it forward and attract new members, with a new venue, new programme of events/presentations, a new logo, updated website and a new club chairman, Paul Reynolds. The club welcomes all enthusiastic photographers and has members from novice to advanced. The aim is to attract newcomers to


Photography News | Issue 48 | photographynews.co.uk

13

Clubs © Mike Newman

Sheffield on show Sheffield PS is holding its 13th Annual Perspectives Exhibition at the Winter Garden, Sheffield, from noon on 20 November to 2pm on 3 December 2017. The exhibition, the first of the Society’s season, will be opened by the Sheffield Lord Mayor, Councillor Anne Murphy. The exhibition allows up to 40 members the opportunity to display a selection of their work. This ensures that on display is a wide range of photographic styles spanning the whole breadth of contemporary photography. Subjects will include landscapes, portraits, wildlife, urban, macro and creative images from worldwide in both colour and black and white. Each member’s panel will include a short narrative about themselves, and their images.

Ebbw Vale’s annual exhibition in Cardiff Bay at the Assembly for Wales (Senedd) starts on 25 September. It is open 26 to 29 September and 2 to 4 October. The opening time is 9.30am, closing at 4.30pm. ebbwvalecameraclub.com

© Kevin Meredith

Ebbw Vale CC

Guildford PS member Veronica Barrett FRPS has been Highly Commended in the Macro Art Photo Project section of the renowned International Garden Photographer of the Year competition (IGPOTY). Veronica’s image, Declining Gracefully, is a beautifully atmospheric portrait of sweet peas that are just past their best. “I’m delighted to have been awarded a Highly Commended in the Macro Art section of the prestigious IGPOTY Competition 11,” says Veronica. “I always love looking at the entries in the winners’ galleries every year, several of whom are by my favourite flower photographers, and it is an honour to be up there with them this year. It is a very inspiring competition.” Adds Willie Jamieson, Guildford PS’s chairman: “We are delighted to see Veronica honoured by this award; she consistently produces beautiful, innovative images and is an inspiration to all our members.” guildfordphotosoc.org.uk vabphotos.com

Bedford CC Bedford CC kicks off its new season on 3 October with a review of the club’s events planned for the coming season. It is a good chance for prospective new members to learn more about Bedford CC and the first meeting is free. Meetings take place every Tuesday at 7.30pm, October through to April, at Scott Lower School, Bedford. Speakers visiting Bedford CC this season include wildlife photographer Tom Way, travel worker Kevin Gordon and Antony Penrose, who will speak about the legendary Lee Miller. bedfordcameraclub.co.uk

© Gavin Hoey

After a year off, Frome Wessex CC will once again be holding its popular Digital Photographic Salon. The Salon has become increasingly popular and prestigious, attracting over 4500 entries in 2015, and was one of the first to recognize the mobile phone camera market as a salon class. Classes will be Mobile Phone, Colour Open, Monochrome Open, Scapes, (Land, Sea, Air, City, Town, Macro), Nature Open and Creative Open. Medals, selectors’ ribbons and certificates will be awarded in each class, selected by the well-regarded and experienced Peter McCloskey, Judith Parry and Roger Parry.

sheffield-photographer.org.uk

© Veronica Barrett FRPS

© Phil Barber

Hot shots wanted

Success for Guildford PS member

Also included in the exhibition is a panel comprising historic images of Sheffield. The Winter Garden is open from 8am to 6pm each day for visitors to view the free exhibition, and club members will be on hand at lunchtimes each day (two hours on weekdays, four hours weekends) to give information about the Society or simply to chat about the images and aspects of photography. Sheffield PS has around 100 members and is one of the largest UK photographic societies, as well as being one of the world’s oldest, having been founded in 1864. The Society welcomes new members of all abilities, and offers a full programme of outings, lectures and activities.


Photography News | Issue 48 | photographynews.co.uk


Photography News | Issue 48 | photographynews.co.uk

15

Interview Profile

Bryn Griffiths

Bryn is a leading pro photographer and has the distinction of currently being the UK’s only Master QEP and one of just 51 across Europe. Find out what it all means here

Years in the photo industry? 33 years. Current location? UK (Midlands-ish). Last picture taken? Of my niece at dinner last night. When you were younger, what did you want to be when you grew up? Either an accountant or a photographer (I now know the world of accountancy wouldn’t have coped with me). Dogs or cats? I’d never really been a pet lover until I got married four years ago, and inherited my wife’s two lovely, mischievous cats (shhh, don’t tell her I like them). Toast or cereal? Toast. Email or phone call? Definitely phone call.

© Bryn Griffiths

a Hasselblad Master (Products) and now a Master QEP, too, so I’m extremely chuffed. My Master QEP has been five years in the making, from concept to execution, and everything all came together at the right time. To be one of only 51 current Masters across the whole of Europe is very exciting and rewarding for me. I had to present a body of 20 pieces of work that all fit together. They have to be perfect in every way – technically and creatively – and have the wow factor, and appeal to seven international judges that all have cultural differences. To give my submission extra gravitas, I commissioned music and poetry to accompany the imagery. I had been working on a couple of concepts for a while and two were emerging with the most potential. I did a shoot in Austria of its ballet company. Dancers are notoriously difficult to get just perfect and I was really pleased with how it had all worked out. In the end, though, it was my defining work and book I produced based on Chernobyl that won the day. I always work with the best people I can, so I will work with Hasselblad for cameras, Bron for lighting and LumeJet for printing. Part of the evaluation processes for the Master

QEP is the quality of printing of the work, and LumeJet offers its unique L-Type prints that are very empathetic to my style and portfolio. I was also using bold, graphical panels of colour and text for my submission, and that allowed me to take advantage of a key feature of LumeJet’s L-Type format, the combination of pinsharp text with ultra-high quality, full, continuous tone photography on the same page. The printing would have been impossible to reproduce to that standard via any other photographic print method. I am extremely grateful to all of the team at LumeJet, who have always supported me with a first-class product and service. I believe it made a difference. The distinction is another tool to have in the marketing/branding armoury, and past experience shows that it will manifest itself positively along the way. I will also now be asked to judge Master QEP Panels around Europe and speak at various conferences and so forth, so that will be great fun as well. For me this is very important, and I have always used this type of third-party endorsement to benefit my business. For example, if you tell people you are the best product photographer in the world, they won’t believe you. However, when

© Bryn Griffiths

© Bryn Griffiths

Images Bryn Griffiths is a leading pro photographer renowned for his advertising work, and he shoots lots of personal images, too.

© Bryn Griffiths

Biography

I have been an advertising and commercial photographer all my working life. My unique approach as an internationally acclaimed art director and photographer helps to ensure that my client campaigns stand out from a competitive crowd. I have a natural creativity that has enabled me to amass a powerful portfolio of photographs, each of which has strengthened an existing brand identity by creating a fresh and iconic new image. My work reinforces inherent brand values by approaching them differently – adding the magic with stunning campaigns that turns the ordinary into the extraordinary. I love working in the studio. There I can create fun and compelling imagery, such as splashing and exploding products, for example. I had won gold at the British Institute of Professional Photography (BIPP) awards. The FEP (Federation of European Professional Photographers) is composed of the national professional associations of 29 countries and represents over 50,000 pro photographers across Europe. I love challenges, so the next step for me was to compete at an international level. The FEP has three qualifications: the EP (European Photographer), the QEP (Qualified European Photographer) and the Master QEP. To date, only 51 photographers in Europe have gained the Master QEP distinction so I’m over the moon to have achieved it. It is my photographic career’s life-long ambition so I’m ecstatic; it was like finding the ‘Holy Grail’. When I do things, I like to do them to the best of my ability and this now completes my set of accomplishments. I have two Fellowships of the BIPP, plus I am

My Master QEP has been five years in the making, and everything all came together at the right time I won the Hasselblad Masters’ competition and told people that in Hasselblad’s opinion I was the best product photographer in the world, people started listening. That’s the power of these types of qualifications and awards. Looking ahead, I am in the early planning stages of a secret project for a large American space agency. I’ll keep you informed...

Contacts bryngriffithsphotography.com europeanphotographers.eu lumejet.com


Photography News | Issue 48 | photographynews.co.uk


Photography News | Issue 48 | photographynews.co.uk

17

Technique How to take better location portraits

Shoot out If you’re looking for a way to re-energise your portrait photography, try shooting on location. In this guide you’ll find solid advice for taking better indoor and outdoor portraits away from your home or studio, with help from portrait pro Paul McLachlan… Pictures by Paul McLachlan more about shooting great people pictures on location. “The creativity, storytelling and a sense of place that you can weave into an image make location portraits really special,” he told us, “but it’s also about clothing and props that add mood and drama. And with location work there’s the opportunity for far more varied poses than in a studio.”

© Paul McLachlan

Taking portraits is one of the biggest draws in photography; it’s the reason many of us picked up a camera for the first time. But simple setups can only take you so far. If you want to inject drama and a story into your portraits, try some location work. We caught up with Paul McLachlan of Pauls Events (pauls-events.uk) to find out

© Paul McLachlan

Ace your location portrait exposures

© Paul McLachlan

When working with natural light on location, you need to stay on your toes. Exposure settings will change with the light and you must be able to adapt. It’s very different from the consistency of working in a studio, where, says Paul, “multiple flashes give you control of every aspect, making shooting quick and easy.” On location, “the time of day and the changing level of available light requires careful positioning of the subject to take advantage of the best illumination and ensure shadows are balanced or filled.” Paul tends to use spot metering, taking a reading from a mid-tone area on the subject’s skin. In this way, the exposure for the subject should be perfect. Shooting in aperturepriority mode, spot metering is a great method for portrait exposures, but you need to watch where you meter from and your shutter speed. If the shutter speed falls too low, you can start to pick up camera shake; so increase the ISO to offset it. It’s also easy to meter on a part of the subject that’s not a mid tone; this will under or overexpose the picture, so check results on screen. If the subject moves to a brighter or dimmer location, or the light changes, you’ll need to spot meter again.

Images Metering can be tricky on location. As the sun moves or your subject changes posture or position, the meter reading can change. Use spot metering for an accurate exposure and if anything or anybody moves, take another reading – just to make sure!

Find better portrait locations

© Paul McLachlan

Part of the fun of location portraits is finding backdrops and scenes that work well with the human figure, whether indoors or out. Older houses are a real favourite of Paul’s and it’s there you’ll find some of the easiest and most effective framing devices for your subject. For many of his location workshops, Paul uses houses with “lots of big windows, door frames, unusual architectural features and furniture to pose on, like large mansions and manor houses.” These kinds of features set the subject off perfectly and to make the most of them, Paul advises taking test shots before the event: “seeing what works and in what format; landscape or portrait, as well as changing the shooting angle to above or below the subject.” It’s important, too, to make sure that the background isn’t dominating the subject, or

fighting for attention. To guard against this, Paul recommends “using the viewfinder very carefully, and scanning around the subject for anything in the frame that’s distracting; this could include bright colours or highlights.” Before you take the shot, check one last time around the very frame edges for anything that’s breaking the lines there. “Outside,” says Paul, “all sorts of objects and colours can be distracting, but changing your shooting position and focal length can solve these problems.” If your subject demands something simpler or you just need a break from more complex backgrounds, scan the area for plain walls; whether they’re papered, painted, stone or wood. They should be easy to find; you don’t need much for a head-and-shoulders portrait.

Get the best from your subject Posing can make or break the shot, says Paul, “natural, relaxed poses can look good but can get a bit boring, so it’s good to have some ideas and themes to use; you can use a smartphone gallery to help give your model ideas.” Beyond that, he says it’s important not to over-direct them. “It’s better to be free flowing and review the images with the model, discussing what works and what can be improved.” Another vital aspect, Paul says is “safety and not taking unnecessary risks. Always think through a risk assessment for your location, and how you would deal with any situation. On most location venues I ensure that I have public liability insurance, just in case of accidents.” But it’s not just health and safety. If you’re working in outdoor or unheated locations there are some basic comforts that’ll make things go easier. For this Paul advises taking warm coats for your subject to slip on between sequences. “Hot tea and lots of breaks are good, too – some models have been known to bring hot-water bottles!” You can offset a lot of problems by being fully prepared before the subject needs to start posing, he adds: “planning the locations, getting lighting set up in advance, doing test shots before the models arrive.” 


Photography News | Issue 48 | photographynews.co.uk


Photography News | Issue 48 | photographynews.co.uk

19

Technique © Paul McLachlan

Use flash creatively

Pick the right aperture

© Paul McLachlan

For his location portraits, Paul favours a pair of fast zoom lenses, and depending on the space available he alternates between his “workhorse 24-70mm f/2.8 and an old 80-200mm f/2.8; both being fast lenses, you don’t have to vary aperture when zooming, and both can be used to create blurred backgrounds if required.” The amount of blur you include in your location portraits depends on how much you want the background to be a part of the scene; wide apertures (low f/numbers) will give you the most blur, but as you close the aperture (higher f/numbers), more of the scene will come sharply into focus. The choice is yours, but if the subject’s surroundings are important to the narrative of the scene, as they often are when you’re shooting on location, there’s no point in blurring them out too much.

Master natural light on location © Paul McLachlan

In many ways flash is the most adaptable way to light your subject, letting you compensate for the available light with bursts of fill flash, beef up what’s there or set up your own look independent of what light’s naturally available. Flash is important, says Paul “for control and for consistent exposure and to balance light levels so that the highlights and shadows fit within the camera’s dynamic range – something that’s often difficult to achieve without it. What’s more, sometimes it’s just not possible to use natural light, even with high ISO settings, as there’s not enough natural illumination to sufficiently light the subject or provide the necessary drama.” In its most basic form, on-camera flash “can be used to soften shadows and to add nice catchlights.” When shooting with oncamera flash Paul uses diffusing modifiers and manually controls flash output to a low level to avoid it looking harsh; or you can use can flash exposure compensation in TTL or auto modes. Most of the time, Paul uses off-camera flash, “either mains powered or travel packs; the benefit is higher power and faster, more reliable recycle times. During workshops we use wireless triggers set for each group and light the portraits using flash meters, so results are consistent and easy to judge. With the light power set, it’s actually easy to adjust exposure settings for really creative images – that’s what we try to encourage on our courses. “Even if you’re unsure of using flash, there’s an easy and quick way to see the benefit; simply set up a monobloc flash and point it at a wall, room corner or ceiling. This will increase the overall light level in a diffused way, but you need to watch out for brightly coloured walls or ceilings as this will affect colour balance.”

© Paul McLachlan

Flash is important for control and for consistent exposure… Sometimes it’s just not possible to use natural light

Learn more at Pauls Events In these situations it may not be possible to correctly expose the subject and the background; you may have to make a choice between them, and if so, it should be the subject that exposure is biased towards (spot metering makes this easier). If you can, says Paul, try to “balance the lighting on the model and that which is outside or viewable in the background. In this case, calculate the exposure on the window or background first, so it’s not too overexposed and then use a simple white or silver reflector, angling it to bounce light back onto the subject.” Alternatively use fill-in flash; “just make sure it’s diffused by a shoot-through umbrella or bounced into a reflector to balance the natural light,” says Paul. A reflector is often the easiest solution. You may even find natural reflectors in your location, like light coloured walls, which will illuminate the subject if you can position them in the right place.

If you’ve been tempted to try some location portrait shooting or want to grow your skills further, check out Pauls Events. You’ll find a superb mix of glamour and fine-art nude photography workshops at exclusive locations in the UK. Events are tailored for beginner and experienced photographers, so you can use them as a learning exercise in lighting technique and working with models, or simply enjoy the benefits of the fantastic locations, lighting gear and beautiful subjects. One of the locations used, and featured on these pages, is Glynhir Mansion in beautiful rural Carmarthenshire. There you’ll find walled gardens, parkland and woods to shoot in, as well as rooms in the house itself, with lighting supplied and set up ready to go. Accommodation, breakfast and meals are included. © Paul McLachlan

Finding good light on location is often a matter of experience says Paul. As it’s one of the most important aspects of a location shoot, you need to spend as much time as possible looking for it. “In any event,” says Paul, “you’ll likely need to adjust the model’s pose and position, depending on how the light is falling.” The best, or at least the most, flattering results often come when the subject is turned away from the light, when it’s diffused and softened, or they’re in shade. Each of these things lowers contrast and reduces harsh highlights and shadows. Window lighting is a great example, especially when the window is north facing or covered by a simple voile which works as a diffuser. It’s one of Paul’s favourite ways to shoot portraits on location and something he emphasis on his courses: “window light is soft and natural, and produces lovely beauty and portrait images especially when it comes to lighting the eyes.”

Pauls Events Visit: pauls-events.uk Phone: 07930 462 906 Email: paulseventsuk@gmail.com


Photography News | Issue 48 | photographynews.co.uk

20

Technique Lighting Academy

Lighting academy

In the first of a new series on how you can make the most of lighting, we take a look at some the latest kit and the wonderful lighting opportunities that it all offers Words & pictures by Will Cheung With recent cameras offering the option of shooting at stratospheric ISO speeds (the Nikon D5 holds the current record of ISO 102,400 with the expansion option of ISO 3,280,000 equivalent), you may think that artificial lighting would be redundant. But nothing could be further from the truth as innovations in lighting have not just opened up more creative avenues to be explored, but has also made what a few photographers have been doing for years available to all. In this first of a new series of features, we take a close look at some of the hardware currently available and what we will be using over the coming lighting features in Photography News. Shoot on-camera We all tailor the lighting solution to the situation in front of us and on many occasions lighting needs no more than a speedlight slipped into the camera’s hotshoe. For events, awards, press work, presentations and even weddings, on-camera flash, perhaps with the addition of a modifier, is a very workable set-up. With the latest speedlight models you get a great deal of useful technology as well, all of it designed to not just make your life easier but also give great results. So, you get dedicated

Above When you need an on-camera lighting solution, Pixapro offers speedlights including the Li-ION580II shown here.

TTL flash metering, decent power levels and eco-friendly power solutions too. In Pixapro’s range there is the Li-ION580II TTL speedlight. It packs plenty of power with a GN of 60 (ISO 100, metres, at 200mm), a 20-200mm zoomhead and very fast recycling times thanks to its rechargeable Li-ion cell. Fully charged you can get 650 full-powered flash bursts with a recycling time of around 1.5secs. What’s more, that recycling time stays almost constant as you use the cell. Basically, you get a power delivery and capacity that is unrivalled by the very best AA cells, and rather than chew through pack after pack of AA batteries, all you do is recharge the cell so it is eco-friendly too. But the Li-ION580II is no one-trick pony and it offers many creative options. There is a built-in 2.4GHz receiver that is fully compatible with the Pixapro ST-IIIflash trigger system. It means the flashgun can be controlled off-camera wirelessly for convenient creative shooting. The Li-ION580II TTL flashgun costs £152.99 and that includes a- Li-ion battery. The strobist phenomenon means there are endless accessories and modifiers to make the most of this form of lighting whether in or outdoors. A two-head outfit would be a portable and very capable solution, but Pixapro has products that can add another string or two to your creative bow. On location It is true that battery-powered studio-type flash units have been around for many years but the battery was often heavy, big and had limited capacity. It is very different now and you get great portability and outstanding capacity with the latest Lithium-ion rechargeable cells. A new product in the Pixapro range is the PIKA200 portable flash. At first glance you might think it is a speedlight but while it is about the same size and has similar features like TTL flash, this is a lighting unit for off the camera shooting. Priced at £290, the PIKA 200 comes with a Li-ion battery and two interchangeable flashheads, a fresnal, non-zooming speedlight style unit and a bare bulb. Swapping heads takes seconds and means you fit the head for the occasion. When you want a more direct flash, go for the fresnal head or if you want to use a softbox the bare bulb head gives all round light output to avoid hot-spotting. Output is impressive too rated at 200Ws, which gives a GN of 52 (ISO 100/m) with the speedlight head and 60 with the bare bulb head while its Liion battery gives up to 500 full power manual flash bursts.

Above A blip of high speed sync flash can really help outdoor people shots. Below The innovative PIKA200 is a powerful off-camera lighting unit that features interchangeable heads as well as features such as high speed flash sync and TTL flash.


21

Photography News | Issue 48 | photographynews.co.uk

Technique High speed flash sync in practice This set of pictures was taken not to show that one unit is better than the other but to illustrate the potential benefit of having more power at your disposal, especially when using HSS outdoors and at longer light to subject distances. We used a Nikon D810 with 70-200mm f/2.8 zoom looking at the high speed sync output from a SB-900 Speedlight compared with a Pixapro CITI600. The distance from the Datacolor test chart was 3m. The camera was set to manual mode but TTL flash was used with a shutter speed of 1/8000sec with apertures as indicated – slower shutter speeds do have the benefit of more power. ISO was set to 200. These pictures have not adjusted in editing but left to show the differences in exposure. With the latitude of Raw there is clearly great potential for exposure and white-balance correction. The SB-900 does fine at f/4 but you can see the declining power issue from f/5.6 onwards. With the powerful CITI 600, you get a decent exposure at f/8.

Nikon SB-900, 1/8000sec at f/4

Nikon SB-900, 1/8000sec at f/5.6

Nikon SB-900, 1/8000sec at f/8

Pixapro CITI600, 1/8000sec at f/4

Pixapro CITI600, 1/8000sec at f/5.6

Pixapro CITI600, 1/8000sec at f/8

Images High speed flash sync has great potential for outdoor shooting and it is widely used by portrait and action photographers. The issue outdoors, though, is that flash has limited working range and even a powerful light can mean wide lens apertures, higher ISOs and eating through batteries. A powerful unit like the Pixipro CITI600 makes life easier.

The design concept is ingenious, but there is much more. You can shoot TTL or manual within an 8EV range, from full power down to 1/128th output, there is high speed sync up to 1/8000sec (of which more later) and has an integral 2.4GHz receiver so meshes in with Pixapro’s ST-III triggering system. The Pixapro CITI600 is just like the sort of monobloc flashhead that you will find in studios up and down the country. Here, though, the unit is battery-powered and you can get up to 600 full power flashes on a single charge. You’re very rarely going to be shooting at full power so with TTL and lower power settings you are likely to get a great many more flash bursts without having to recharge. Standard lighting modifiers such as brollies, softboxes and beauty dishes fit happily into this S-bayonet head and we will be demonstrating this in our forthcoming features. The TTL version of the CITI600 is on sale for £650 or go for the manual only option for £450. The CITI600 is rich with features too and these include second (or rear-curtain) sync, multi-flash mode, flash durations between 1/220sec to 1/10,000sec and consistent colour temperature performance through its power range. There is also high speed sync, a feature found on all the units discussed so far; so perhaps now is a good time to delve into that feature in a little more depth and look at what it can do for your picture-taking. Shoot high speed sync Being able to correctly synchronise flash at shutter speeds higher than usual used to be the province of owners of leaf shutter cameras which also had the benefit that the flashgun’s full power range was available. But most cameras do not have the option of a leaf shutter and use a focal plane shutter instead. However, with high speed sync (HSS) flash, being able to sync flash at all shutter speeds, even at 1/8000sec, is common and readily available assuming you have the right kit. This means that you can very effectively mix bright daylight and flash for eye-catching results. So, for example, if the day is bright and you want to shoot a portrait at f/2.8 for a nice blurred backdrop (and you don't have a ND filter handy) and the subject needs a burst of flash to fill in some of those heavy shadows, that is now easy with high speed sync.

Above and below The Pixapro CITI600 gives power, impressive battery capacity and a wide range of power levels and flash durations. And it’s easy to use.

It is worth taking a closer look at high speed sync because the term is often used generically and, as with most broad brush strokes, the finer details get muddled and there are a great many ifs and buts with different manufacturers tackling the issue in their own way. Let’s start simply. When a focal plane shutter fires, the sensor/film is exposed to light and when flash is used at the correct flash sync speed (mostly 1/125sec or 1/250sec) or slower the whole image frame is exposed at the same time. Fine, no problem with flash here. But as we venture into shutter speeds above the correct sync speed, normal flash means you get blank frames or partially blacked out shots. This is because a focal plane shutter has two curtains and to make an exposure, the first one (often called the front curtain) opens to reveal the sensor and the second one (the rear curtain) follows very soon thereafter to end the exposure.

The time gap between the first and second curtains doing their job depends on the set shutter speed. At the correct flash sync speed, the gap between the two is long enough to have the whole sensor unveiled at the same time. At faster shutter speeds, however, the delay between two curtains is much shorter so effectively there is a slit travelling across the sensor. At very fast shutter speeds, this slit is very thin which is how you achieve such short exposures. With a non-HSS set-up this means flash shots taken above the correct sync speed are failures. But use a compatible flashgun and set HSS (Canon, Sony) or Auto FP (Nikon) mode, now you can get correctly exposed shots at every shutter speed. What happens now is that the flashgun pulses very rapidly, so rapidly that you can‘t see it, which means that the sensor is picking up light as the very thin slit of the focal plane shutter traverses across it. The downside of this form of camera/ speedlight HSS is that the pulsing flashgun uses a lot of battery, the output level is low which limits working distance and the flash can get warm with the risk of overheating if you are shooting lots. However, we are now seeing the same approach in studio type flash units, ie. from Profoto and Pixapro. Elinchrom and trigger makers Pocket Wizard use timing to give HSS from a single burst of flash timing the exposure to record a burst of light as it gradually tails off. The Pixapro CITI600 and Pixapro PIKA200 discussed previously give HSS with the optional £45 PRO-STIII T 2.4GHz remote trigger, available for Canon, Fujifilm, Nikon, Olympus/Panasonic and Sony. The advantage of something like the CITI600/PIKA200 over a speedlight is power, both in output and in respect of battery life compared with a set of AAs in a speedlight. As mentioned earlier, a pulsing speedlight is limited in power but something like the CITI600 has 600Ws of output so you will have a greater working range and more options when it comes to aperture selection too. Check out the comparison pictures above. Over the coming issues, we will be exploring in greater depth what it is possible to achieve with this Pixapro kit both in and out of the studio.

On many occasions lighting needs no more than a speedlight slipped into the camera’s hotshoe

Above Pixapro offers a selection of radio triggers for wireless lighting control. Features include, depending on the model, an operating range of up to 100m, 32 groups and high speed flash sync.

The kit we used Essential Photo is a leading specialist in selling studio equipment to the photographic, film and video industries. Pixapro is its lighting brand and a full range of products is available from speedlights and portable flash through to mains heads and generators. Over the coming issues, we’ll be exploring the opportunities presented by the Pixapro kit discussed here. essentialphoto.co.uk


Photography News | Issue 48 | photographynews.co.uk


23

Photography News | Issue 48 | photographynews.co.uk

Advertisement feature

Light and Land celebrates at 25 The UK’s premier photographic tours and workshops brand will be celebrating its 25th anniversary in 2018. Photography News takes a closer look at the company with its founder, expert landscape photographer Charlie Waite © Justin Reznick

© Charlie Waite © Antony Spencer

Photographic tour companies are plentiful today but that wasn’t the case when world-renowned landscape photographer Charlie Waite, with fellow photographer Sue Bishop, set up Light and Land in 1993. Celebrating its 25th anniversary next year, Light and Land, with its programme of tours offering a wide variety of compelling photographic locations led by experts, has built an enviable reputation and is often the first port of call for photographers wanting to enjoy great locations with their cameras. “I never dreamed that it would have the longevity that it has had,” says Charlie, “and with the loyalty of our expert tutors and clients it has become the UK’s premier photography tour company. We have 93% of our customers rebooking. In fact, over 200 clients have travelled with us more than four times and one intrepid client has travelled with us over 50 times. “Our repeat booking rates speak for themselves, as do our reviews on TripAdvisor and Facebook. Being a small company we always listen to our customers, always offer 24/7 care and attention on tours and try to offer the highest levels of customer service possible. And of course, the incredible images our Light and Landers upload to our gallery makes it all so worthwhile!” Looking at Light and Land’s current line-up of products on its website reveals an exciting mix of tours and workshops at locations far and wide, but there are a considerable number of events happening around the UK, too. So if you want to hone your urban landscape skills in London, that is an available option, but your tastes might be more rural so North Norfolk, Snowdonia and the Orkney Islands are among the many locations for tours and workshops. Abroad, there are stunning locations to tempt photographers of all interests and experience levels. You can enjoy winter in Yellowstone National Park, go on safari to Botswana and aim your lens at the lovely architecture found on Santorini. The long list of locations features many old favourites, with new destinations regularly added to the portfolio. “Tuscany remains one of our most popular European tours, while Myanmar for somewhere

We aim to always use the best photographers in the business, who understand the methods of Light and Land, and always go to the best destinations further afield is always a sell-out, too,” says Charlie. “Recently, we’ve found that European destinations such as Albania and Macedonia are proving to be really popular for their unspoilt beauty.” Going to a wonderful location is one thing but to make the most of the opportunities and overcome any technical issues, you need tour leaders that have an intimate knowledge of the location and have the photographic skills to help clients get the most from their adventure. That’s not an issue with Light and Land, as Charlie explains. “We aim to always use the best photographers in the business, who understand the methods of Light and Land, and always go to the best destinations in the world. A lot have worked with us for many years and one leader has just clocked up his 100th tour. Their dedication and loyalty as well as their patience and kindness with clients are second to none. And of course, their incredible photography skills help clients get pictures they can be proud of.”

Win a one-day Light and Land UK photographic workshop You can help Light and Land celebrate its 25th anniversary by entering this contest. Answer one question correctly and you could be attending a UK-based one-day workshop of your choosing. To be in with a chance of winning, answer the following question and email your answer to competition@ photographynews.co.uk with L&L in the subject line by the closing date of 9 October 2017. If you do not wish to be contacted by Photography News and selected

third parties, add NO to the subject line. The winner will be the first correct answer picked at random. Q Who are the two leaders of the Light and Land one-day workshop to Stourhead Gardens in November 2017? A David Clapp & Sue Bishop B Charlie Waite & Andy Farrer C Peter Hendrie & Joe Cornish For full terms and conditions, see below.

Contact For the latest tours, workshops and availability please see lightandland.co.uk

TERMS & CONDITIONS: You must be a UK resident, and aged 16 or over. Entry is restricted to one entry per email address and closes at 11.59pm, 9 October 2017. The prize must be taken as offered, and cannot be exchanged for an alternative. In the event, the prize cannot be supplied, no liability will attach to Bright Publishing. Travel, accommodation and food are not included in the prize. Employees of Bright, Light and Land and their immediate family and agents may not enter. Entries not in accordance with these rules will be disqualified; by entering, competitors will be deemed to have agreed to these rules. The winner will be notified within seven days of the closing date, and must respond within seven days of being notified, otherwise another winner will be chosen.


Photography News | Issue 48 | photographynews.co.uk

24

DLR 30th

DLR hits 30 The Docklands Light Railway is 30 this year and Photography News readers were invited to join in its birthday celebrations with a 12-hour photo marathon Written by Will Cheung

Above The start of the 12-hour DLR marathon – our happy team, all looking fresh-faced and ready to go. Our thanks to Alisa Gill for giving us the opportunity – she’s at the front wearing a red lanyard.

© Ian Ashley

Ian Ashley

“I’d never been on the DLR before and there is so much to see, and the way it interacts with the community is fantastic. The system is user-friendly, even though the trains are not particularly photogenic, and there are many places to explore. “Obviously the tracks and trains give you ample opportunities, as well as the people and places close by. There were so many aspects that catch the eye. I can see why people come back again and again as the time just flew by, and we hardly scratched the surface of what there is to see on the network.”

Darren Wilkin

“Although I live in London and only 10 minutes from a DLR station, I’ve really only used it a few times and not shot it. It was better in places than I expected – there were certainly places that I will be revisiting in the future, with an eye to exploring them more fully. “The most interesting thing to shoot was definitely the architecture – the modern steel and concrete of the Canary Wharf area, the urban decay around Stratford High Street station, and the Neo-classical areas around Bank, to mention a few.” © Darren Wilkin

When the London’s Docklands Light Railway (DLR) opened 30 years ago the network comprised nine trains, 15 stations and 13km of track, and carried 26 million passengers in its first full year. Today, there are 149 trains, 45 stations, 38km of track and it’s used by over 130 million people annually. As part of its 30th anniversary celebrations, the DLR has published The Destination DLR guide which highlights 30 places to visit. Go to tfl.gov.uk/modes/dlr/ to download the guide. Also as part of its 30th celebrations, PN readers were invited to a photo marathon, the brainchild of Alisa Gill, service delivery support manager of KeolisAmey Docklands, the company that runs the DLR. “Knowing how popular DLR is for being driverless and running through some quirky and stunning places I thought it would be interesting for people to get familiar with the area,” Alisa says. “Additionally, I remembered how much fun it is to look through old DLR photos, and see how people used it, how it looked, how the uniform looked and how the community has changed. This is where the idea of photographing the entire network was born. “After attending the PN-organised Photo 24 marathon event and seeing the DLR project that PN’s editor Will Cheung was working on, I thought it would be great to combine the two and have a smaller marathon, and invite PN readers as well as internal staff.” Thirteen PN readers were selected by ballot to attend the day that was planned to start at 10am with a health and safety briefing and finish 12 hours later. Anyone can go and photograph the DLR and great shots can be had in freely accessible public areas without special permission – but there are limits. For example, tripod use on platforms is not permitted, but for our special event we had permission for two tripods-on-platform sessions. Alisa had set up three challenges for the day which included photographing all 45 station entrances and all 45 roundels at each station, and three follow-up competitions: best picture of a station interior, best picture of a DLR train and best community (the immediate area around the station) image. The winners you can see on the last page of the feature. Over these pages, we have a selection of pictures taken by PN readers on the day with some of their thoughts, too. Thanks to them for attending the event and showing such huge commitment and creativity. Our thanks also go to Alisa Gill for inviting us along to be part of the DLR’s 30th anniversary.


Photography News | Issue 48 | photographynews.co.uk

25

DLR 30th

© James Mills

“It was my first photography event like this and I thoroughly enjoyed it. It was a fun challenge to travel the whole of the DLR line for the first time, let alone photograph it! “I knew it was going to be a busy day, with 45 stations to photograph and it lived up to expectations – I finished all 45 by 8pm. “I am most definitely revisiting the area, as I loved the Docklands and feel it’s a great location for photography.“

The tracks and trains give you ample opportunities, as well as the people and places close by. There were so many aspects that catch the eye Karen Finnegan

“It was the first time I had been on the DLR, despite living in London for 16 years. I was surprised by how quick it was to get between each station, much shorter than I expected. I have driven through some of the areas before, but it was interesting to see a different perspective. “I took up the challenge of getting to each station, but as I was conscious of how much time I had I didn’t shoot the entrances, just ended up shooting the sign on the station. I wasn’t being very creative. In retrospect, I wish I had done some street photography, but I am glad I succeeded in seeing all 45 stations and got to see all the routes. So much diversity and so many juxtapositions.”

“I had taken the odd photo on the DLR before, but just in passing really, so this was my first time shooting the DLR in a structured way. “My favourite aspect was shooting at dusk to get some really good light, which fortunately we had but unfortunately I needed to be in more than one place at the same time. The biggest challenge was working out the best spots to be at a particular time.”

© Martin James

© Karen Finnegan

Martin James

Andrew Moss “I live in London but I have only shot the DLR on Photo 24 events. I had the idea of recreating a couple of images I took on Photo 24 but had to wait for it to get dark to get the look I wanted. For me there is great joy in wandering off and finding the odd image – I went to Trinity Buoy Wharf for the first time, for example, and had a great time there. I liked bumping into different people on the same event on a platform and swapping stories.”

© Josh East

Josh East

© Andrew Moss

James Mills “I’ve been making trips into London specifically for personal photography projects for several years so naturally the DLR train network has provided much inspiration. I would add that I have been asked to move on from stations before when I’ve had the camera out, but for this event to actually be encouraged with a ‘thumbs up’ from DLR staff made this event one to remember. “I’ve tried previously a few times for a decent sunset view from Pontoon Dock platform with the city skyline as a backdrop. It really worked out well on this visit so I’m pleased.”


Photography News | Issue 48 | photographynews.co.uk

26

DLR 30th © Colin Mill

Colin Mill

© Gemma McGill

“I’ve travelled on the DLR a few times before but this was the first time I’d actually taken the time to explore it in a little more depth, and journey to stations I’d not been to before. The scale of DLR is huge and a lot of the stations were above ground, which hadn’t fully occurred to me. “The biggest challenge from my perspective was previsualizing some shots, especially ones that actually had trains in the frame.”

Gemma McGill

Robin Harmsworth

“I did a good few shots of the DLR on Photo 24 by default but this was the first time I have gone out specifically to shoot it. I wasn’t sure what to expect, but as the day went on I soon realised the amount of scope available – and how short 12 hours is! “Who would have thought a subject like a train line could mean so much to shoot. I think the station surroundings along with the infrastructure and architecture meant different opportunities, where the constantly-changing light made for some very interesting shots.”

© Robin Harmsworth

“It was my first time shooting on and around the DLR and to have a dedicated day working with the suggested challenges was a great opportunity. Also, I have never really explored the region the DLR covers and it has a great diversity of areas as well as communities. “I liked the experience of driverless, automated trains, which gives the opportunity to sit at the very front when a seat is free – it is very popular to sit in these seats! “I took the challenge to visit all 45 stations and photograph the entrances, so that meant leaving the train and on many occasions going down multiple flights of stairs – I completed 150 sets of stairs by the end of the day. “I also had a quick scout around at many stations with the view to a future project. The station challenge gave me a fun day and a flavour of what’s to come. I am planning to visit various areas and use it as a project base for future trips to London, working my way round the network at a more leisurely pace, enjoying the surroundings and soaking up the community atmosphere.”

I soon realised the amount of scope available – and how short 12 hours is!

The winners 1ST PLACE – STATION

© Gemma McGill

RIGHT Best community picture, Gemma McGill BELOW RIGHT Best picture of a DLR train, Darren Wilkin FAR RIGHT Best picture of a station interior, Darren Wilkin

1ST PLACE – COMMUNITY

1ST PLACE – TRAIN

I was very impressed with and proud of what our readers achieved Will Cheung © Darren Wilkin

Special mentions also goes to Andrew Moss, Martin Janes (twice). Each receives a pair of tickets for the Emirates Airline.

Images The DLR offers a diverse range of subjects and the contest’s three themes gave our readers room to get creative.

© Darren Wilkin

Three photo contests provided an extra creative challenge for our readers during the DLR marathon and here are the winners, judged by Alisa Gill, Akwa Asong and Rebecca Steele from KeolisAmey Docklands Ltd; and Mark Lendemain, Anna Hirst and Sara Kent from Docklands Light Railway. Each reader won four tickets to the Emirates Airline, a gift from DLR and their image will be printed for the DLR offices. Although not planned, three second places receive a nice surprise from the DLR and these went to Josh East, Martin Janes and Ian Ashley.


Photography News | Issue 48 | photographynews.co.uk


28

Photography News | Issue 48 | photographynews.co.uk

Camera test Specs Price £1249 Sensor 24.3 megapixels, 6000x4000pixels Sensor format APS-C 23.6mm x 15.6mm X-Trans CMOS III with primary colour filter Lens 23mm f/2, eight elements in six groups Aperture range F/2-16 Focusing range 30secs-1/8000sec ISO range Native 200-12,800, expanded 10051,200 (expanded speeds only with mechanical shutter) Shutter range Mechanical shutter 30secs to 1/4000sec plus B Electronic shutter: 30secs to 1/32,000sec Drive modes Continuous up to 8fps Metering system TTL 256 zone, multi-zone, spot, average, centre-weighted Exposure modes PASM Exposure compensation +/-5EV in 0.3EV steps, AEB Monitor 3in, 1040K dots Viewfinder Optical/electronic hybrid with 92% optical coverage and 100% electronic coverage. The EVF features 2360K dots Focusing Single continuous, manual with face detection Focus points Intelligent Hybrid AF with AF illuminator. Single point, zone (3x3, 5x5, 7x7) from 91 zones in a 13x7 grid, wide tracking Video Full HD Connectivity Wifi, geotagging, HDMI type D, USB 2.0 Other key features Intervalometer, integral flash GN 4.6 (100/m) with TTL, slow sync, front and rear curtain modes, digital teleconverter with 50mm and 70mm (35mm equivalent) settings, 15 film simulation modes, grain effect, advanced filters including toy camera and miniature Storage media 1xSD card Dimensions (wxhxd) 126.5x74.8x52.4mm Weight 469g with battery and card Contact fujifilm.eu

Fujifilm X100F If high picture quality is a priority but lugging around a bulky camera isn’t, then what you need is a big-sensored premium compact, perhaps something just like this sleek model from Fujifilm Words and images by Will Cheung Fujifilm is leading the charge across a very broad front. The mirrorless X-series has an ever-growing following, the GFX has redefined the medium-format market and its X100 series shows what’s possible with premium compacts. The Fujifilm X100F is the latest in the series and the most highly featured to date. Resolution from the APS-C sensor is 24.2 megapixels, top native setting is ISO 12,800 and the AF system features 91 areas in a 13x7 grid. Add existing features such as a hybrid viewfinder, Fujifilm’s film simulation modes and a 23mm f/2 lens and you have a camera with serious appeal. The X100F is a fixed lens camera, so fundamentally different from the X-T2 and the X-Pro 2, but all three have a retro look, share the same APS-C X-Trans CMOS III sensor and have the same or very similar points of design such as the focus joystick, the exposure compensation dial and the four way rear thumbpad. The X-Pro2 and X100F have more in common, with a similar top plate, but both feature an advanced hybrid viewfinder – as does the X100F’s immediate predecessor, the X100T. So on the X100F you can compose via the monitor, but through the finder eyepiece there is the option of an optical or an electronic viewfinder. The EVF shows 100% of the image and there is plenty of camera setting information that is overlaid onto the image – key items such as aperture, shutter speed and ISO are still outside the image area. Image quality is excellent and thanks to its 2360K-dot resolution screen fine detail is really well depicted. Flick the front-mounted lever and the finder image changes, quickly and quietly. The optical view shows a bright line frame with a border which is where all setting information is placed. Having the image inset in this way means you can see what is about to enter the picture area without having to peer over the camera top. Both finder types work really well. Using the optical finder is just like using a classic rangefinder camera and many users will prefer the involvement of an actual image.

Using the optical finder is just like using a classic rangefinder camera and many users will prefer the involvement

With the EVF the image is brighter compared with the optical one when ambient light levels are low. Also the EVF gives real-time previews of white-balance, film simulation modes and exposure including when compensation is applied. On the top plate is the exposure/shutter speed dial with ISO being set by a lift-and -rotate collar. There is no physical lock on the dial nor can you lock it via a menu item. ISO can also be changed with the front command dial if you set the ISO dial to the A position. The other top plate dial is for setting exposure compensation within the range of +/-3EV in 0.3EV steps. There’s the option of a C setting where you can delegate setting compensation to the front input dial; you get a range of +/-5EV in 0.3EV steps. This I preferred – you can check the effect of compensation (not with the optical finder) more smoothly by using your forefinger on the command dial than with your thumb on the click-stopped compensation dial. If you have both ISO and compensation set to be changed by the command dial, pushing it toggles between the functions. The lens’s aperture is nicely clickstopped in 0.3EV settings and has finger tabs to help handling. The lens also has a control ring which is also the manual focus ring. In AF mode, the control ring can be set to adjust film simulation setting, whitebalance and digital teleconverter – the latter magnifies into the image to give the effect of a 50mm or 70mm focal length and works in JPEG mode only. Typically for Fujifilm there is plenty of customisation potential.

There are five function buttons, plus the rear command dial and AEL/AFL button and each offers 32 options which includes off. There’s a quick menu via the Q button where there are 16 fields available and the functions here can be edited down or prioritised to suit. The monitor bucks the trend; it isn’t tiltable and has no touch functionality. The 24.3-megapixel thirdgeneration X-Trans sensor and X-Processor Pro aside, it’s the AF system that is the X100F’s major attraction. It is an advanced AF system with a selection of working patterns. For the broadest coverage there is Wide/Tracking where you leave the camera to its own devices to pinpoint and focus in the subject using a 13x7 (91) grid. Face and eye detection are extra options. You can have face detection on its own, with auto eye detect or with right or lefteye priority.

With the option selected, active AF points light up green and so you can see what the camera has focused on. The actual number of AF points varies up to a maximum of nine, usually in a cluster but this varies and you might see two distinct groups or you might get a group with the odd single AF point out on its own. It depends on the scene and what the AF system picks out. Like many wide area AF systems, the X100F’s can be spot-on but it can also be distracted and focus something other than your subject. This isn’t necessarily an issue if the focused area and the subject are roughly at the same distance as the lens is a wide-angle so you get decent depth-of-field anyway – unless you’re close-up and shooting at f/2. I did try the Wide/Tracking mode with face detection on for some candids and portraits and that mostly worked well. Eye detection works less


29

Photography News | Issue 48 | photographynews.co.uk

Camera test Performance: ISO Original image

ISO 200

ISO 800

ISO 1600

ISO 3200

ISO 6400

ISO 12,800

ISO 25,600

ISO 51,200

Above The X100F is a perfect take-everywhere camera. It’s even portable enough to take cycling, as was the case with the lower image here.

consistently well, sometimes locking on quickly, other times not at all. I also tried with and without the pre AF engaged. Pre AF means the camera continually autofocuses even when there is no finger pressure on the shutter button. There is a price to be paid in the form of greater battery consumption and the focusing is constantly twitching, but it does mean that when you do press the button to take the shot the camera is probably already most of the way to a sharp picture. In theory. For general shooting the wide zone is good but if you want to be selective, shallow focus or go for off-centre framing the mode is more fallible. The X100F uses the same battery as found on the X-T2/X-Pro2 so bigger than the batteries found in the three older X100 cameras. This means potentially greater shooting capacity – clearly there are a great many variables here that impact on shooting capacity. Back to the focus system; should you prefer more control go for zone AF where you get the options of 3x3, 5x5 or 7x7 AF points. The Zone AF group can be shifted around the 13x7 grid quickly using the focus joystick and within the zone, you get the active points lighting up. The focus lever comes in really handy for single AF point where you have the option of 13x7 grid or you can even go for 325 zones in a 13x25 grid. The area of coverage grids of both is the same. The final focusing option is manual, selected by the sliding control on the left-end of the body. A distance scale (you can choose

between metric or imperial) appears whether you are using the optical finder or the EVF – it appears on the monitor too. Using the finder, adjust the focusing ring and you get a magnified view of the electronic finder image whether you are in EVF or optical finder mode and using the rear command dial gives two magnifications, while touching the shutter release returns you to the full view. With the EVF image you can also get a small inset image at the corner of the frame. Push the rear input dual and you get a zoom view too. If you prefer, the magnified focus check can be turned off and there are other manual focus aids on offer too. Over the years I have tried all the cameras in the X100 series and enjoyed them. I have also appreciated the benefits as they have come along but the cameras have always delivered fine image quality, good handling and featured the lovely retro styling. The X100F is by some measure the best X100 camera so far which will not surprise you one bit. Of course image quality is going to be better with the latest sensor and processor, but more megapixels is not a priority for everyone. If handling is, then the X100F will not disappoint and it is a lovely camera to use. The AF system is responsive and precise so if grabbing shots is your thing then the X100F is very likely going to fulfil your needs. Also on focus, the addition of the focus lever is very welcome and it is difficult to imagine going back to the four-way pad to shift the AF point around.

The X100F’s native ISO range is 200 to 12,800. The lift-and-drop ISO dial also has an L and an H setting – these only come into operation when the mechanical shutter is selected and the expanded settings are not available when either the electronic shutter or the mechanical/electronic shutter is chosen. The H setting gives either 25,600 or 51,200 and you decide which in the menu. Our set of ISO shots was taken late evening when the base exposure at ISO 200 was 1/5sec at f/8. The ISO NR setting was set at 0 and the long exposure NR setting turned off. The resulting Raws were processed in Lightroom with no NR set. Images are noise free to ISO 800 and then it starts to appear from ISO 1600 although you have to look Above images The Fujifilm X100F with its tried and tested APS-C X-Trans CMOS III sensor gives an impressive ISO performance even at the higher speeds. Right The camera’s design has a retro theme and that includes a lift-and-drop ISO dial and a shutter button that has a screw thread to accept a traditional cable release.

hard in the shadows to see any grain effect. Detail is still very well resolved and colour saturation stays at very good levels. Venture to ISO 3200 and any shadow noise is more evident but it is acceptable and looks filmic. Even the ISO 4000 image looks acceptable in the right situations and if you really had to push the limits of the camera’s ISO skills for a sharp picture then ISO 6400 looks remarkably good. To sum up, the X100F delivers an impressive ISO performance throughout its native range and I have had no hesitation using ISO 3200 and even ISO 6400 if the conditions demanded it knowing the resulting shots would show great detail and saturation.


30

Photography News | Issue 48 | photographynews.co.uk

Camera test Performance: exposure latitude Original image

We shot this set of bracketed exposures on a bright August afternoon. The exposures were shot in manual mode and the metered corrected exposure at ISO 200 was 1/250sec at f/11. Bracketing was done by adjusting the shutter speed. The bracketed exposures were corrected using Lightroom without any other adjustment apart from exposure. The -4EV shot was recovered very well and there was no issue with matching the tonality and colour quality of the correctly exposed shot. Checking the shadows, though, does show an impact as regards noise and grain is evident although this

looks filmic. Also there is a loss of resolution in the finer details. That is no surprise though. Noise levels drop noticeably with the -3EV shot and while it still lags behind the correct shot, the effect is very good and fine detail looks clean. On overexposure, performance is less strong. The +4EV shot you can’t do much with and is beyond help. You have more chance with the +3EV shot and it is possible to get decent results although this depends on how strong the highlights are in the first place and intense highlights can look grey and flat. Shots of low contrast scenes overexposed by this degree can be recovered well.

Performance: For noise reduction

-1EV

-2EV

-3EV

-4EV

0

+1EV

+2EV

+3EV

+4EV

Overexpose by one or two stops and there is no problem; recovered shots look the same as the correctly exposed ones. The X100F’s sensor deals very well with exposure abuse especially on the side of underexposure where

-3EV shots still look good and even -4EV can be more than acceptable. On overexposure there is less wiggle room, but +2EV shots work fine, and that applies to +3EV shots too providing the scene isn’t too contrasty in the first place.

Original image

Noise reduction is a menu option with settings from 0 (default) to +/-4. For this test I shot at ISO 3200, 6400 and 12,800 using 0, +2, +4, -2 and -4 settings and the pictures shown here are straight out of the camera fine quality JPEGs. You can certainly see the benefits of using NR. Set it to -4 which is effectively turning it off because there is no off option, and the level of noise is quite obvious. Go to the other extreme and set +4 and the benefit is very evident and it doesn’t seem overdone either so the image is not overly soft, artificial or strident which can happen with strong noise reduction. It would depend on the scene but I think +4 is usable. However, if there is any doubt then setting +2 is the safe option and gives high-quality images which do not appear overprocessed. -2

-4

0

Verdict The X100F is priced at the higher end of the premium compact market so it is more expensive than many, more versatile interchangeable lens cameras. But it’s not what you’ve got, it’s what you do with it that counts, so while the X100F has a fixed lens it is of a very high quality and a useful focal length ideal for many forms of photography. What’s more the lens has a very strong supporting cast. Notably, there’s a very highquality sensor with excellent high ISO performance and a responsive AF system that is significantly superior to the X100F’s predecessors. Factor in an accurate exposure system, the option of different shutters and an elegant design and the X100F has got a great deal going for it. It’s certainly highly recommended.

Features Excellent hybrid finder, fine sensor, built-in 3EV ND filter Performance AF speed and exposure accuracy impressive Handling Fast start-up, focus joystick, silent even with mechanical shutter

+2

+4

Images The Fujifilm X100F has an excellent ISO performance and is capable of producing exhibition-size prints at very high ISO settings. For JPEG shooting noise reduction is an option to minimise any digital noise and it certainly proves its worth. The default setting is 0 and in my tests +2 and even +4 are usable. Higher settings can ‘smudge’ the image and make it look unnatural but the X100F’s feature performed well.

Value for money You get a lot of camera for the money so rates highly Overall One of the very best premium compacts on the market Pros Lens quality, hybrid viewfinder, AF speed, responsiveness as a whole, high ISO performance, battery life Cons No control lock feature, compensation dial can be adjusted by accident


Photography News | Issue 48 | photographynews.co.uk


Photography News | Issue 48 | photographynews.co.uk

32

Camera test Specs Price £729 body only, £799 with the EF-M 15-45mm f/3.5-6.3 IS STM Sensor CMOS 24.2-megapixels, DIGIC 7 processor with optical low pass filter, 14-bit Raw Sensor format APS-C 22.3x14.9mm, 6000x4000pixels ISO range 100-25,600 Shutter range 30secs to 1/4000sec, bulb, flash sync 1/200sec Drive modes Up to 7fps with AF, 9fps with fixed AF Metering system Evaluative, centre-weighted, spot and partial Exposure modes PASM, creative assist, scene intelligent, hybrid auto, SCN, 2x custom Exposure compensation +/-3EV on 0.3EV steps, AEB +/-2EV – three frames at 0.3EV steps Monitor Tiltable 3in, touch screen, 1.04k dots Viewfinder Optical EVF EVF-DC2 available Focusing Contrast detect, phase detect, multi-area, centre, zone, single point select, face detect, tracking, single, continuous, manual Focus points 49 points, Dual Pixel CMOS AF Video Full HD, 1920x1080 at 24p/30p/60p Connectivity Bluetooth, WiFi, NFC, USB2.0, micro HDMI Other key features Five axis digital IS, integral flash with GN5 (ISO 100, m), time-lapse movie mode Storage media 1xSD card Dimensions (wxhxd) 112x68x45mm Weight 390g body only Contact canon.co.uk

Canon EOS M6 Canon’s mirrorless EOS M range is growing and here we test out its mid-range, monitor-only model that offers the option of an add-on EVF Words and pictures by Will Cheung

Canon’s commitment to its mirrorless range has been ramped up a little in recent times and there are now four attractive models to choose from. That said, the EOS M10 won’t be in the shops for long as it has just been replaced by the just-announced EOS M100, priced at £570 with lens. At the top of the tree is the EOS M5, which sells for £999 with lens. Finally there’s the EOS M6, tested here, in the mid-range. It is priced at £729 body only and £799 with the EF-M 15-45mm f/3.5-6.3 IS STM. The EOS M6 is a very compact mirrorless camera, its small bodyform helped by the fact there is no integral electronic viewfinder. Monitor-only cameras are common nowadays so the lack of a viewfinder shouldn’t prove a detraction to would-be purchasers. However, should you want a viewfinder – even for the odd occasion – Canon has thought of that and you can buy one as an optional accessory. The EVF-DC2 is priced at £198 and this gadget slides into the EOS M6’s accessory shoe. There is a lock to stop it sliding off and it has a built-in dipotre correction eyepiece, too. An eye-detection sensor is also built in, so the view automatically switches from the monitor to the EVF when the camera is brought up the eye. Above The EOS M6 on its own is compact and streamlined. Slip the £198 EVF-DC2 onto the accessory shoe and you gain a good quality electronic viewfinder image.

The actual viewing image provided by the DC2 does not appear especially large but it is good, bright and contrasty. Exposure information is provided across the bottom and out of the image frame. The focus point is also shown – in the case of wide-zone focusing, active groups of AF points are shown. The EVF image can’t be adjusted which is a shame because on my sample, the EVF differed by some degree from the monitor view. The EVF image looked saturated and underexposed while the monitor’s image was correct. Anyway, back to the camera, minus the optional EVF. The sensor is a 24.2-megapixel APS-C format CMOS unit that works with Canon’s DIGIC 7 image processor, giving an ISO range of 100 to 25,600. I shot Raws and fine JPEGs simultaneously. The former were

processed through Canon’s free DPP software as well as Lightroom. ISO performance and exposure latitude are discussed in detail elsewhere, so I will focus here on general picture quality. I was impressed with what the EOS M6 produced, viewing results on screen and in the form of A3 prints made on an Epson SC-P800 printer. Colours were accurate and lifelike and images showed good contrast, and fine detail was nicely recorded. On straight-out-of-thecamera JPEGs, shot in the standard colour mode, colour reproduction was vibrant, too. (On some family portraits I would have preferred a more delicate presentation, but this is a matter of taste and easily rectified in editing. For future shots, the camera has plenty of internal options.) The M6 has a fully rounded exposure system with the standard


Photography News | Issue 48 | photographynews.co.uk

33

Camera test Performance: ISO The pictures shown here started life as Raws, and the files were processed in Canon’s free Digital Photo Professional software with no extra noise reduction dialled in. The photographs were taken in the late evening, with the 15-45mm standard zoom. The self-timer was used to release the camera, which was mounted on a Gitzo travel tripod. No in-camera noise reduction was selected. Shoot at the lower ISO settings and you get very high quality images, as you’d expect.

At ISO 100 and 200 images are impeccably clean and very slight graining starts to appear at ISO 400. It is not much and can be resolved with noise reduction in software. Noise is much more evident from ISO 800 onwards, which is perhaps a little surprising as some the newest CSCs are still capable of clean images at this speed. Noise level takes a significant leap from ISO 800 to ISO 1600 and there is a noticeable negative impact on the resolution of fine detail. The good thing is that the grain effect

is neutral and looks filmic, and this speed is still okay for critical use. The fastest speed for critical use is probably ISO 3200 and although shadows are noisy and detail looks less sharp, you can still achieve decent-sized prints at this speed, especially with sympathetic post. From ISO 6400 and beyond, noise levels continue to increase and at ISO 12,800 and 25,600 images look pretty poor, with heavy grain, detail degradation and areas of random magenta and green colouring present.

ISO 100

ISO 400

ISO 800

ISO 1600

ISO 3200

ISO 6400

ISO 12,800

ISO 25,600

Original image

Above Noise performance of cameras is improving all the time, and the EOS M6 delivers a capable performance in this respect, but it still lags behind some of its rivals when you get into the higher settings. That said, you can shoot at ISO 1600 and 3200 and still get more than decent shots. Right Camera layout is clean, and key controls are clearly indicated. The exposure compensation dial does not lock and can be adjusted inadvertently, so you need to watch out for this.

PASM as well as subject-orientated modes. I mostly used aperture priority AE and multi-zone Evaluative light measurement, and it was generally spot on. The only issue I had was that it seemed prone to undue influence by bright light, giving slightly underexposed shots. This didn’t just involve against-the-light-situations where underexposure is no surprise at all, but also if there was a small point of light in the frame. Any underexposure was correctable and within the exposure tolerance of M6’s Raws, but on occasion the JPEGs were too much under. Live view autofocus is delivered with the help of Canon’s impressive Dual Pixel AF technology. In this, every sensor is divided into two individual segments and for focusing, the information from both sections is compared. This is a rather exciting technology used on several of Canon’s topend DSLRs and it has proved a

Live view autofocus is delivered with the help of Canon’s impressive Dual Pixel AF technology

capable and competent live-view AF mechanism. I tried wide-zone tracking focusing, single point AF and smooth zone AF. The smooth AF zone setting means you get a nine-point section at the centre of the viewfinder image. In the tracking mode, zones cover 80% of the image area and when the subject is detected the active AF areas are shown with green outline boxes on the monitor. If a subject tracks across the frame, the AF latches onto it

and tracks across the frame, too. This worked well with people walking around, although I didn’t get the chance to shoot fast action with the test camera. Single point works as you would expect and latches on quickly to whatever area the AF point is aimed at or selected. The EOS M6 has a respectable level of user customisation potential. The controls that can be customised are grouped together and can be accessed via the info button. One group is the shutter and AE

lock and then there is a group of input dials – in these two groups the potential is limited. The largest group and most versatile is a bunch of six buttons headlined on the monitor as ‘Other buttons’. Here, the six buttons have 21 options including ‘off’. The options include the obvious ones of manual/autofocus, drive mode and ISO, but there are many less frequently used options as well. Overall, I found the EOS M6 a good camera to use – with and without the EVF – and it was

small enough to tote around even when out on daily errands. Picture quality rates highly, with the occasional lapse in exposure and/ or focusing systems – but this is certainly not a major detraction if you fancy the EOS M6. In terms of price, the EOS M6 has few direct rivals. However, if you want the EOS M6 with the optional EVF, the price is £997, so just £2 less than the EOS M5 with the same lens, and models from Fujifilm, Olympus and Sony are within reach, too.


Photography News | Issue 48 | photographynews.co.uk

34

Camera test Performance: exposure latitude Raws are exposure tolerant, so here we see how far we can push those out of the EOS M6. Correct exposure was metered at 1/125sec at f/11 and ISO 100. From this setting, a manual bracket to +/-4EV was made. The bracketed exposures were recovered in Lightroom to produce a ‘correct’ exposure. The underexposed shots fared well and the recovered files looked perfectly acceptable in terms of tonal gradation and colour balance. Noise levels with the -4EV image were quite high, though, and that impacted on fine detail rendition. Tolerance to overexposure was less impressive.

The +1EV and +2EV shots recovered well, although the latter gained a blue colour cast the highlights remained good. Any further, however, and the recovered shots were not acceptable. In our test scene, the attractive sky in the +2EV shot went flat, grey and detail-less in the +3EV exposure. To sum up, overexposing with the EOS M6 is not advised and while you can get away with +2EV, any more and your image is in trouble. Tolerance to underexposure was much more acceptable and even though noise increased, images good fine especially with some noise reduction in software.

-4EV

-3EV

-2EV

-1EV

0

+1EV

+2EV

+3EV

+4EV

Original image

Above Start abusing the exposure latitude of the EOS M6’s Raw files and you can get away with a great deal, especially on the side of underexposure. You get less tolerance with overexposure, though, and anything over +2EV and you run into trouble with highlight recovery.

Verdict The Canon EOS M6 is an enjoyable camera to use. Its small size means carrying it around all day is not an issue; handling is sound and the picture quality it delivers is comparable with rivals until you venture into the high ISO area (beyond ISO 800). The optional EVF is a neat solution for those keen to have a viewfinder but it adds bulk, and it costs £198 which means the combination price is close to the cost of the EOS M5. It might not impact on all potential buyers but the range of M lenses is limited, and being able to use Canon’s EF lenses via the optional adaptor EF-EOS M does not really make up for this.

Features 22/25 Highly featured model but monitor only will put off a few Handling 22/25 Small body, touch screen and good menu makes for a pleasant camera to use Performance 22/25 Capable of a solid performance; high ISO performance a small downside

Here is a selection of straight out of the camera JPEGs shot on the EOS M6. Top The EOS M6 has a selection of Canon’s creative modes for in-camera fun. This was shot in the toy camera setting. Above left The background sky wasn’t that bright but it tricked the EOS M6’s Evaluative meter into underexposing by about 1EV. The exposure was 1/500sec at f/5 and ISO 200. Above right A similar bright sky scenario here was well dealt with – the exposure was 1/200sec at f/6.3 and ISO 200. RIGHT Lifelike colours was one selling point of the EOS M6 and even on dull, cloudy days, the standard colour setting gave vibrant and nicely saturated images. Exposure was 1/40sec at f/6.3 and ISO 200.

Value for money 22/25 Seems a lot to pay for a monitor-only model Overall 88/100 The EOS M6 is a capable camera with much to commend it, but it faces serious rivals Pros Option of add-on EVF Cons Poor tolerance to overexposure, average pictures at high ISO


Photography News | Issue 48 | photographynews.co.uk


Photography News | Issue 48 | photographynews.co.uk

36

Accessories test Buyers’ guide

Package holiday

2

We all have our go-to image editing packages, but sometimes it’s good to try something new. Here you’ll find 10 great photo-editing softwares, all of which can be tried for free – you never know, you might like them so much you move to them full time...

3

1 1

Serif Labs Affinity Photo £48.99

Affinity Photo is a professional level image editor with a Photoshoprivalling range of features and performance. And it’s under £50. The software offers full support for layers, adjustment layers and masks; nondestructive editing; text and vector tools; up to 32-bit editing; focusstacking; HDR; lighting and blurring effects; a lens correction filter; and all the selection and retouching tools you’d expect to find in Photoshop, including a built-in frequency separation mode for portraits. Handling is very smooth with a versatile workspace and smooth 60fps real-time editing previews and it’s compatible with all standard image files; there’s a Raw converter, too. Another nice touch is the ability to save your image’s ‘Undo History’ so you can make changes even after saving and closing. affinity.serif.com

2

Anthropics LandscapePro 2 £29.95

Specifically engineered for editing your scenic shots, LandscapePro 2 uses a number of intelligent features to make the act of improving landscapes simpler. The automatic selection tools help you identify parts of a landscape image, such as the sky or trees, and they can then be edited individually. The range of retouching is varied from minor alterations in colour or exposure to replacing whole skies or adding textures. In this latest version, there are hundreds of new skies to add to pictures; a Sky Reflections feature for more realistic sky transplants when there’s a watery foreground; and improved selection tools. There’s also a new Studio Max edition of LandscapePro 2 with batch processing and a histogram panel. Order LandscapePro2 and you will save 10% by entering the code PN48L landscapepro.pics

3

Adobe Creative Cloud Photography £9.98 month

Since Adobe moved to a subscription platform photographers have been able to get Lightroom and Photoshop as a bundle for around £10 a month. You might not own the software, but for £120 a year it’ll never go out of date and be constantly improved. Lightroom is a superb package for photographers, offering a complete solution for image processing, cataloguing and publishing. Import images, keyword them to create and maintain a catalogue, then develop them manually or use editing presets; finally export the new image to your catalogue, website, social media or printer. As for Photoshop, it’s long been the industry standard for photographers and artists, with a complete range of tools for creative editing. The CC Photography package also comes with mobile versions of the Lightroom and Photoshop. adobe.com/uk

4

Corel AfterShot Pro 3 £43.99

AfterShot Pro 3 is a comprehensive workflow and non-destructive image processing package in the vein of Lightroom, but perhaps its most eyecatching claim is that it’s up to 4x faster than Adobe’s software. This speed is found in its batch processing, but there’s loads more on offer besides. As a Raw converter, version three has a new dynamic camera profile updater which notifies you when new cameras are added. The software’s Highlight Recovery feature has been enhanced to bring back more natural detail and tone in overexposed photos; and the extensive range of Lens Correction options has been expanded to let you make and share your own settings. Similarly AfterShot Pro3 lets you browse, download make a share effect plug-ins across the software’s growing user community. aftershotpro.com

5

Photolemur £23

If you’d rather spend time shooting than editing, Photolemur could be right for you; it’s an intelligent photo-editing app which analyses and improves photos, recognising anything from faces and colours, to skies and horizons then enhancing them. The Sky Enhancement function darkens and intensifies washed out skies, and similarly, Exposure Compensation identifies lighting problems and fixes them. Daylight correction adjusts tones, so they’re appropriate for the time of day you took the picture, and similar to Lightroom and Photoshop, there’s a Dehaze to improve clarity and detail. Also, portraits get a lift from the Face Enhancement feature, cleaning up blemishes and improving skin tones. Photolemur also works with Raw files and has noise-reduction and ‘JPEG Fix’ options to improve grainy or overly compressed images. photolemur.com


37

Photography News | Issue 48 | photographynews.co.uk

Accessories test

7

10

6

9

5 8

4

6

Macphun Luminar Neptune £64

Soon to be available for Windows as well as Mac, Luminar Neptune, is an editing package bursting with features, both manual and automatic. The latest version included a new intelligent auto filter feature called Accent AI; this identifies what fixes the photo needs and you can then set the level of adjustment. There’s a full suite of pro-level tools, but the interface adapts to your skill level, so there’s no danger of being overwhelmed. More advanced tools like layers, blend modes, luminosity masks, and brushes for selective editing, sit comfortably with simpler settings like removing distractions, reducing noise, improving colour and adding basic creative effects like split toning and vignetting filters. The program integrates seamlessly with other Macphun Creative Kit software like Aurora HDR. macphun.com

7

HDRSoft Photomatix Pro £75

Specialist photography techniques often require specialist packages; and for high dynamic range (HDR) processing there’s Photomatix Pro. The package can be run on its own, or as a plug-in for Photoshop or Lightroom, and lets you combine multiple exposures to record scenes that would normally have lost detail in the highlights or shadows. Pre-blending, Photomatix can align images taken by hand and remove fringing to improve quality. Once the separate starting exposures are loaded in, you can pick from a huge range of presets, or control the whole process manually. If you use the presets, there’s an excellent range, from very natural looking effects, to those which use exaggerated processing for an ultra-detailed look. Image are easily saved, or sent back into Photoshop for further editing. hdrsoft.com

8

DxO FilmPack Elite £99

DxO produces several photo editing packages, and one of the most eye-catching is FilmPack, a program that lets you add an incredible array of monochrome and colour film effects to your images. There are two versions of FilmPack to choose from: Essential (£59) and Elite (£99). The Essential version has a decent range of filters, but the Elite edition goes much further, for instance offering twice as many classic black & white film effects, and a much expanded selection of colour filters. Also in the Elite version are frames, textures and light leak effects, all of which are easy to tailor to your own particular images. The Elite version also supports split-toning and blurring effects, as well as allowing you to use Raw files, and apply batch processing, which makes it easier to add the same effect to a sequence of images. dxo.com

9

Capture One Pro 10 £255

Phase One’s Capture One software has some serious heritage in digital editing, being one of the first Raw converters ever to be launched. Also an image cataloguing and complete workflow package, the latest version features custom tailored profiles for all supported camera models in order to achieve optimum colour and detail, as well as a huge catalogue of lens profiles. There’s a complete range of editing tools for global and targeted adjustments, and facilities for complete control of colour grading across large sets of images. Capture One also lets you shoot tethered for a simpler workflow in the studio. Other upgrades to the latest version include a new Styles & Presets tool, a three-stage sharpening filter, more watermarking options, and improved support for Fujifilm X-series Raw files. phaseone.com

And one for your mobile... Adobe Aviary Free Adobe has Lightroom and Photoshop mobile versions, but Aviary is the simplest and most immediate of the lot; perfect for quickly improving and sharing shots. Aviary has lots of standard tools that let you, for instance, clean up selfies with red-eye, remove blemishes and whiten teeth; crop, rotate, and straighten; add blurring and vignetting effects; modify exposure by crunching highlights or lifting shadows; and control saturation and colour. There are also more design-related effects, like stickers, frames and overlays; and adding text. And while the app itself is free you can also purchase hundreds of professionally designed effects as in-app purchases. aviary.com

10


Photography News | Issue 48 | photographynews.co.uk

38

First tests Accessories

First tests

We get our hands on the latest kit and share our first impressions – so you know whether or not to add it to your wish list Reviews by Will Cheung and Kingsley Singleton

Specs Prices 64GB £89.99 complete with SD adaptor. 32GB £44.99 Card type microSDHC, micro SDXC Capacity 64GB tested here Class Grade 3 U3, Class 10 Bus speed mode UHS-1 SDR104 Temperature proof Yes, operating temperature –25°C to 85°C Waterproof Yes (IPX7 standard) X-ray proof Yes Magnetic proof Yes Durability 10,000 mating cycles Sequential read speed Up to 100MB/s Sequential write speed Up to 90MB/s Contact samsung.com/uk/memorystorage/

Samsung PRO Plus 64GB microSD £89.99 Samsung’s latest storage card addition is to its PRO Plus line-up. It is a microSD card with the option of two sizes, 32GB and 64GB. It is the bigger version tested here, priced at £89.99, and it comes complete with an SD adaptor so you’re ready to go, whether you intend to use it in a tablet, phone or your DSLR. This Ultra High Speed Class 10 rating with U3 compatibility card boasts Samsung’s fourproof features, so it’s designed for outstanding performance in challenging conditions. Of course it gives great reliability, too, so your data is as safe as possible. The four-proof feature means Samsung cards are waterproof, temperature-proof with a quoted operating range of -25°C to 85°C, X-ray-proof up to 50 Roentgen, and magnetic-proof up to 15,000 gauss. I don’t know about you, but I haven’t got access to a powerful X-ray machine nor an industrial electromagnet to test the last two proofs, so I have to take Samsung’s

word for it. The good news is that the more adventurous among you will get reliable performance when skiing, or trekking through tropical rainforests. I didn’t manage anything especially exotic for this test, but did take the card for a flight abroad and had no problems there. I also submerged it in fresh water for 30 minutes and it carried on working perfectly once dried off. My freezer provided a test for it and 30 minutes in there didn’t dent the card’s performance either. Not managing to break the card, I tried it through the Blackmagic design Disk Speed app. This test gave a write speed of 76.1MB/s and a read speed of 89.5MB/s, which compares very favourably with the claimed write speed of 90MB/s and read speed of up to 100MB/s. I then next did a test during which I moved data to and from a desktop computer, transferring 10GB of information using a Mac Mini via its built-in SD card slot. This was written in 136secs, effectively giving a transfer rate of 73.5MB/s, while the reverse process took 133secs which equates to 75.1MB/s. I also tested it in practical shooting situations and with various cameras, too, shooting videos and stills. With a Nikon D810 – with its 36.3-megapixels set to shoot 14-bit uncompressed Raws – in continuous high I got 23 shots before buffering slowed things down, and then it took about 20 seconds for the buffer to clear and the record light to extinguish. With each Raw file being round 75MB that is a lot of data to deal with, and the Samsung PRO Plus microSD card handled it impressively. I also used this card shooting 4k footage in a Fujifilm X-T2, and I’m pleased to report I had no issues here, either. WC

Verdict I submerged it in fresh water for 30 minutes and it carried on working perfectly once dried off

Left Samsung’s new PRO Plus Micro SD card comes complete with an SD adaptor.

Storage cards have to be reliable, first and foremost, and if that is ever compromised then you’ll never trust that card (or brand) again. No problems on this front with Samsung. Very close after reliability is performance and again no issues on that front with the new PRO Plus card. It’s fast, whether you are shooting high res still images or 4K video. Add in Samsung’s fourproofness and you have a card that is worth recommendation. Pros Samsung four-proof design, write/read speed, comes with SD adaptor, gives reliable performance Cons Nothing of note


Photography News | Issue 48 | photographynews.co.uk

39

First tests

Nikon 10-20mm f/4.5-5.6G AF-P DX £329 Up until recently, if you had a Nikon DX format DSLR and wanted to buy a first-party ultra wide-angle lens you basically had two choices: the 12-24mm f/4 or 10-24mm f/3.5-4.5G ED. Both are pricey, and getting pretty long in the tooth, having been launched in 2003 and 2009 respectively. But now Nikon’s 10-20mm f/4.5-5.6G AF-P DX is here. It’s an impressively modern lens built to be portable, flexible and supply highquality shots, and it’s naturally useful for landscapes, architectural shots and interiors. It focuses to 22cm so it can create large and detailed foregrounds and a built- in 3.5-step Vibration Reduction (VR) function should improve sharpness when handholding. But before we cover properly what it can do, here’s what it can’t. The lens is only compatible with the most recent Nikons, and even then they may require a firmware update. I tested it fine on a Nikon D7500 and D810, albeit with slightly limited functions on the latter. This loss of function involves the Pulse Motor technology (AF-P), and therein according to Nikon, ‘if the standby timer is allowed to expire, the focus position will change when the 10mm

F/4.5

timer is restarted.’ Therefore you need to refocus before shooting and/or set a longer standby time on the D5, Df, D750, D7200, D7100, and D5200; it can also be addressed by a firmware update on the D5 (v1.20) and D750 (v1.12). Nikon states the 10-20mm is incompatible with the D4, D800, D700, D610, D300, D7000, D5100, D3200, or anything older than them. Another issue of compatibility is the lens’s VR function. To switch it on or off you need a Nikon DSLR with an Optical VR option in the Custom Setting>Shooting/display menu. If your camera doesn’t have this, VR is automatically turned on and can’t be cancelled. This didn’t seem to cause any loss of sharpness though, even when the camera was mounted on a tripod. In terms of design, the lens is very small and streamlined. Weighing only 230g, it’s great for keeping weight to a minimum, but didn’t feel too light for the D7500 body I tested it on. It’s short, too, at just 77mm. The lens’s zoom ring is well grooved giving a decent grip, and you can go from 10-20mm in less than 90º, so there’s no labouring over the turn. The action isn’t the smoothest, but it feels fine for a budget 14mm 10mm

F/5

Format APS-C (Nikon DX) Mount Nikon F Construction 14 elements in 11 groups Special lens elements 3 aspherical lens elements Coatings Super Integrated Coating Filter size 72mm Aperture range f/4.5 (10mm) to f/29 (20mm) Diaphragm Seven blades, rounded Internal focus Yes Manual focus Yes

lens. There are no buttons on the body at all, so switching to manual focus needs to be actioned from the body. The manual focus ring is quite thin but turns smoothly enough; it’s tricky to tell how quickly you can focus from the closest 22cm to infinity as there’s no focus distance window, but it was no slouch, taking a little over 90º. 20mm

F/5.6

F/5.6

F/5.6

F/8

F/8

F/8

F/11

F/11

F/11

F/16

F/16

F/16

F/22

F/22

F/22

Specs

F/29

The lens’s AF-P system proved very quiet, speedy and accurate, taking just a fraction of a second to go from near to far. Nor did it hunt overly in low-light conditions. The lack of focusing noise makes it attractive for video, too. The lens has a variable aperture, giving a maximum f/4.5 at its widest, where it’ll get close to f22. At the long end you’ll get f/5.6 to f/29. To test optical quality we shot in Raw mode, and processed the files with no corrections or sharpening. In the shots shown here, I changed position to fill the frame with each focal length. Results were then examined close up. At 10mm, centre sharpness was impressive right from f/4.5 through to f/8 where it peaked at the edges. Sharpness started to drop off from f/11 and f/22 saw a real loss of sharpness. At 14mm, it was a similar story; results were very good wide open at the maximum f/5, and continued in this way until f/8 to f/11 beyond which sharpness suffered. Again the minimum aperture was quite fuzzy in comparison due to the effects of diffraction. At 20mm, again f/8 offered the best results at both centre and edges. Sharpness wide open didn’t seem to be quite as good as the wider settings but was still impressive. At the minimum apertures, again results saw a significant loss of sharpness. In general, our real-world results showed a test sample better geared to the wider apertures than the smaller end of the scale. I wouldn’t recommend pushing this lens much past f/16 when working in Raw, though in-camera lens corrections will improve JPEG results somewhat. Vignetting was clearly visible at the wider apertures, disappearing by around f/8. Fringing, mainly at the far edges, was most obvious at the wider focal lengths, but was still visible at the long end of the lens. Both were quickly controlled in processing the Raw files however. Barrel distortion is quite obvious at the 10mm setting, but quickly falls away as you zoom in; an adjustment of +12 to the Raw file using Camera Raw’s Distortion slider fixed the issue, the compromise being a slight loss in file size through cropping. I didn’t detect much sign of flare or ghosting when shooting into the light either, and images were well saturated and contrasty. KS

Min. focus 22cm Focus limiter No Max. magnification 0.17x Distance scale No Depth-of-field scale No Image stabiliser Yes, 3.5EV claimed benefit Tripod collar No Lens hood Yes, supplied Weather-sealed No Dimensions (lxd) 77x73mm Weight 230g Contact nikon.co.uk

Verdict Nikon’s 10-20mm f/4.5-5.6G performs well, especially at wider to middle apertures. At higher f/numbers, it’s not as strong. But the lens is small and light, and won’t put too much of a strain on your bank balance either, while the addition of VR gives it even more versatility, especially in low light. For Nikon DX users looking for an ultra-wide angle optic at an affordable price, it’s well worth investigating, though it also feels like there’s space for a new higher end DX wide lens in the range. Pros Image quality at wide to middle apertures, size, weight, focusing speed, VR function, price Cons Limited compatibility, fringing requires correction in post, sharpness drops off at small apertures


Photography News | Issue 48 | photographynews.co.uk


Photography News | Issue 48 | photographynews.co.uk

41

First tests

Laowa 7.5mm f/2 £499 Chinese lens-maker Laowa seems to have set out to cover more unusual focal lengths while also adding an interesting twist. So we have optics such as this 7.5mm Micro Four Thirds format fit lens (15mm equivalent in the 35mm format) that is the world’s widest rectilinear lens with a f/2 maximum aperture. Being so fast and wide you might expect the lens to be bulky – in MFT terms – but not a bit of it. I used it on an Olympus OMD E-M5 Mark II and balance with that camera was good – it was obvious that the body was the heavier partner of that combination. A 20g lighter version called Lite, is available for drone users and is slightly more pricey at £519. The lens is manual focus only, with the smooth focus barrel covering infinity to its minimum 12cm focus distance in less than half a turn. With such a short focal length, focusing is less of a worry thanks to extensive depth-of-field at all apertures. Focusing hyperfocally according to the lens’s depth-of-field scale, even at f/5.6 you get focus from infinity to just under 50cm. On my sample, however, the depth-of-field scale wasn’t that accurate so worth checking if you buy this lens. That said, at wider apertures and closer to the camera subjects you do still need to focus, and focusing ultra-wides can be tricky in low light. However, I found my camera/ lens combo worked well just using the plain EVF, which is just as well because focus peaking and manual assist aids were not available. Speaking of fingertips, you do have to watch what you are doing with your fingers because with

F/2

F/8

Specs Price Standard £499, Lite version £519 Format Micro Four Thirds (15mm in 35mm format) Mounts Micro Four Thirds Construction 13 elements in 9 groups Special lens elements Not known Coatings Not known Filter size 46mm Aperture range F/2-22 Diaphragm Seven blades Internal focus Yes Manual focus Manual only Minimum focus 12cm Focus limiter No

such a wide view and a small lens I did catch an intruding digit or two lurking at the bottom of the image. The supplied bayonet-fit lens hood does provide a physical barrier to help keep your fingers out of shot – user error of course – but it is something to watch out for. The hood does not clicklock into position so it can twist while on the lens, so watch for this, too. The aperture ring has a smooth action and is click-stopped in oneEV steps, so you have to make an educated guess with in-between settings. But this isn’t easy because, unusually, the gaps between each f/stop are not evenly spaced and starting from f/2 get progressively narrower. So, for example, if you want to set a mid-aperture value between f/2.8 and f/4 that is easy, but it’s not possible between f/11 and f/16. Of course this is not a big issue at all, but it is unusual. Optically, I thought that this lens delivered. The shots here were taken with an OMD E-M5 Mark II shooting Raws that were processed in Lightroom with default sharpening. Central sharpness was very impressive through the aperture F/2.8

F/11

Maximum magnification 0.11x Distance scale Yes, metres and feet

Central sharpness was very impressive through the aperture range range with the exception of the two smallest settings. F/22 showed the effects of diffraction and gave noticeably softer shots, and while f/16 suffered from diffraction as well, quality was still good. Those settings aside, the central images within the f/2-11 range gave crisp, contrasty shots, and with some help from unsharp mask in processing my test shots looked great. There is a benefit to shooting at f/5.6 which is just about the optimum aperture value. The differences aren’t massive, so if the light levels mean you need to shoot at f/2 or f/2.8 don't worry about the central section of the image because it will be sharp. Checking out the edges and corners shows the benefit to picture quality of stopping down. To be fair, edge quality isn't too bad at f/2 but fine detail is a little less well resolved F/4

F/16

and you can see improvements from f/2.8 onwards, reaching a peak at f/5.6 and f/8. Green fringing is evident towards the edges at all apertures, but this is minor and nothing to worry about, and easily curable in software. There is barrel distortion and this is really evident when shooting a building square on. It can be readily corrected in post processing but this might be an issue if you intend using JPEGs straight out of camera. F/5.6 is the best aperture for across-the-frame sharpness and the only reason to stop down further is if you want even more depth-of-field. All round, I think this lens delivers a fine optical performance, especially at its wide- to mid-aperture settings; images are lovely and sharp and with good contrast. Watch the barrel distortion though. WC F/5.6

F/22

Depth-of-field scale Yes Image stabilizer No Tripod collar No Lens hood Bayonet fit supplied Weather-sealed No Dimensions 50x50mm, excluding hood Weight 170g Contact ukdigital.co.uk

Images The Laowa 7.5mm has an extremely wide angle of view, and this means you have to be careful not to includes bits of yourself or your shadow. It’s easily done.

Verdict Laowa’s 7.5mm ultra-wide lens is lovely, offering a compelling combination of usability, great looks and fine optical performance. Its focal length might be too wide for some, but I am a fan of ultra-wides and the dramatic images that you can shoot with them. For the money, this lens is top value and a ‘must look’ for all Micro Four Third owners.

Pros Small, looks, fine optical performance Cons Hood doesn’t lock, aperture ring design, barrel distortion


Photography News | Issue 48 | photographynews.co.uk

42

First tests Specs Price 3N1-26 £159.95 3N1-36 £179.95

Manfrotto Pro Light 3N1-26 £159.95 & 3N1-36 £179.95

Collection Pro Light Material Nylon, RipStop, synthethic fabric 3N1-26 Dimensions (internal, hxlxw) 42x23x16cm Dimensions (external, hxlxw) 46x26x26cm Weight 1380g 3N1-36 Dimensions (internal, hxlxw) 46.5x31x17cm Dimensions (external, hxlxw) 49x35x28cm Weight 2000g Contact Manfrotto.co.uk

Manfrotto’s Pro Light collection features a good number of bags of different styles, designs and sizes to suit all sorts of image makers. So, for toting around a CSC or DSLR with one lens there is the Access H-17PL holster, which sells for £54.95, and at the other extreme there are roller cases for full-blown still/video/ lighting/drone outfits. In between there is quite a number of shoulder bags and backpacks. The 3N1-26 and 3N1-36 are backpacks selling at £159.95 and £179.95 respectively, designed for the CSC/DSLR photographer who prefers to have with them a good supporting system of lenses and accessories.

The Pro Light bag series is made from strong, reinforced, lightweight materials so you get plenty of protection with minimal weight. The bags are tailored to withstand frequent use but still make carrying serious loads comfortable. The 3N1-26 (above left) is the slimmer of the two bags and can be used as a one-strap sling bag or a

backpack, depending on the load as well as the situation. I loaded a Fujifilm X-T2 outfit and tried both options and found I preferred the backpack option purely on the premise it was more comfortable. Configuring the straps takes no time at all and there are even two slideover covers to shield the large clips, to avoid any accidental (or intentional)

Images As well as offering options to open the bags from top, bottom and both sides, the entire back flap can be unzipped to access all your gear in one go. You can even choose whether to zip clockwise or anti-clockwise.

release. There is a waist loop, too, but this I preferred tucked out of the way so didn’t use it. The top compartment is large enough for a Nikon D810 with a 24-120mm zoom. The base of this compartment can be taken out if you want to take a long telephoto. The lower section can be accessed from the left or the right so use the side to suit your preferred internal layout. Both securing sideflaps have an extra clip and feature two zips, which gives you flexibility in terms of how you prefer to use them. The bag’s bottom half can house a DSLR with a lens and two, three or even four extra lenses depending on what they are. So it’s no problem if you prefer to stash your camera in the lower compartment and keep the top for your waterproofs and food. With access from the top and from both sides, you have the choice to set the bag up to your preferences but there is another option, too. The whole back flap can be unzipped to access the whole compartment. Four zips means whether you are right- or left-handed or prefer to zip in an anti-clockwise or clockwise direction, you can choose. It also means you can unzip the top half to access content and at the same time, unzip the bottom to do the same and have the middle secured. Four zips does seem overkill, but it’s flexible. A large carry handle and various slim pockets, zipped and non-zipped, loops, tripod straps and a slot for a tablet or small laptop finish off the bag’s carrying potential, which is considerable for its stature. For a city daytrip I took two Fujifilm X-bodies and six lenses, filters and batteries and the 3N1-26 worked well. If your outfit is larger then the 3N136 is the one for you. It is very much a more grown-up, significantly broader backpack with a greater load capacity,

Verdict These Pro Light bags are goodquality products designed to give a high level of protection to your kit while maintaining a high level of practical usability and comfort. There is a price for that level of protection – both bags seem on the weighty side even when unladen. Both bags look great – unless you prefer a low-key look, in which case the red trim is on the ostentatious side. In terms of handling, I felt the bags were rather too fussy with perhaps too much webbing, clips and bits of Velcro. That of course is a personal view. What is undeniable is that the bags work well, are versatile – offering different ways of using them – and have plenty of carrying capacity. Attractively priced, too.

Pros Spacious, lots of pockets, good protection levels Cons Slightly fussy to use, conspicuous, no sternum strap on the 3N1-36

but its core design characteristics are the same. I loaded two Nikon fullframe bodies, six lenses and a set of Lee filters. It weighed just over 10kg on my scales. I should own up and say that lugging such a weight around is not something I have done for some time for the simple reason I want to enjoy my photography. But the 3N1-36 made light work of this hefty load. While the single, across-the-chest strap is an option, it’s not really practical as a sling bag unless you have the physique for it. It works well as a back pack, though, although a sternum strap would have been nice. WC


Photography News | Issue 48 | photographynews.co.uk


Photography News | Issue 48 | photographynews.co.uk


Photography News | Issue 48 | photographynews.co.uk


Photography News | Issue 48 | photographynews.co.uk


Photography News | Issue 48 | photographynews.co.uk

47

Technique PART 13

Camera School

Here we lift the lid on all things camera related, showing how to get better results from your CSC or DSLR, and providing all the info you don’t find in the manual. So, stick with us and you’ll soon be wielding your camera like a pro. This month, how to set up exposure bracketing and use it to improve your pictures Words & pictures by Kingsley Singleton Over the last few months we’ve talked about the different exposure settings on your camera (aperture, shutter speed and ISO), and how they combine to create an image. According to the exposure mode you’re using, these can be set completely manually (manual), semiautomatically (shutter or aperture-priority), or fully automatically (auto or program). In all but manual mode, the camera uses its metering system to take a reading of the scene, then sets what it thinks will make a good exposure. What is bracketing? Exposure bracketing is a mode that creates darker and/or lighter images as well as the base exposure that the camera has metered. How much darker or lighter depends on the settings you use, and what the camera is capable of. You can also vary the number of shots taken. Bracketed images are shot in sequence, and how the exposure is darkened or lightened depends on the mode you’re shooting in: if you’re shooting in aperture-priority mode, the aperture will remain constant with the shutter speed increasing and decreasing to make the image lighter or darker; if you’re in shutterpriority it’s the aperture that will open or close to make the change in exposure; if you’re in program, both may change. Like other exposure settings, the variation in exposure is defined in stops; either full stops -1EV

like 1EV, or fractions of them such as 0.3EV or 0.7EV. So a three-shot bracket, at a variation of 1EV, taken in aperture-priority mode, would cover shutter speeds of, for example, 1/60sec (the base exposure), 1/30sec (the brighter exposure) and 1/125sec (the darker exposure); change the exposure to variation to 3.0EV and you’d get 1/60sec, 1/8sec and 1/500sec. Why is bracketing useful? Bracketing is helpful in situations when you’re not sure of the exposure you need, such as when the subject is backlit or when parts of the scene are much brighter or darker than others. After shooting a bracketed sequence you can pick the exposure that looks best, or you can use all you’ve shot to make the final image in editing; a method called exposure blending or high dynamic range (HDR) processing. If you’re doing the latter, you’ll need to ensure there’s no change in camera position between the shots, so using a tripod is essential

0EV

What to do with bracketed shots After you’ve shot your bracketed images, you can either pick the exposure that suits what you wanted, or use the separate exposures to make a final image via exposure blending or HDR processing. Exposure blending is the simplest of these options, and can be done in Photoshop using Layers plus the Eraser tool, or Layer Masks, as shown right. In the example image, I used Layer Masks to show the top of the darker exposure for the sky, and parts of the two lighter ones for the foreground. This method is essentially similar to using a graduated filter at the time of shooting, but affords more control of which areas are actually darkened; for instance the mountainside can be kept lighter than it would be if using a graduated filter alone.

+1EV

How to use exposure bracketing Although you can bracket manually, using either manual mode or the camera’s exposure compensation setting to produce lighter and darker exposures, the easiest way is to use the auto exposure bracketing (AEB) function. In this mode, accessed via a button on the body or via the shooting menu, you choose the number of frames and method of bracketing, then the amount of exposure change between shots. You can usually choose to create shots lighter and darker than the base exposure, or just shots that are lighter, or shots that are darker. Most of the time, it’s best to shoot bracketed exposures in aperture-priority, so that the depth-of-field in the image doesn’t change. For the same reason, you should keep the focus in the same place for each shot. For the simple three-shot bracket used to

make the example here, I shot in aperturepriority mode on a Nikon D810. I pressed the bracketing button (BKT), dialled in ‘3F’ denoting three frames, then set the exposure increment to 1.0EV. With the camera on a tripod and in self timer mode, this produced exposures of 1/2sec, 1sec, and 1/4sec at f/16. If there had been more variation of light in the scene, like a brighter sky or a more shadowed foreground, I could have set the exposure increment to 2.0EV or 3.0EV, or set the number of frames to five, seven or nine for greater coverage. NEXT MONTH Perfect panning without pain with our expert advice. Join us again next month for more top technique tips


Photography News | Issue 48 | photographynews.co.uk

48

Competition

Editor’s letter

Life, the future and everything

WIN!

A Samsung memory card! Capture life’s special moments across all devices with the ultra-reliable Samsung PRO Plus 128GB microSD memory cards. Samsung’s latest cards feature recently upgraded fourproof features: they are water, temperature, X-ray and magnetic proof, so shooting in the most challenging conditions isn’t an issue. We have one massive 128GB Samsung PRO Plus microSDXC card and SD adapter to award to an eagle-eyed winner. Just complete the word search below, and you’ll find one word in the list that’s not in the grid. Email us on puzzle@photographynews.co.uk with that word in the subject box by 15 October. The correct answer to PN46’s word search was Pixel and the Samsung 128GB card was won by Joe Hill from Buckinghamshire. samsung.com/uk/memory-storage

One August Friday, the M11 motorway was closed in both directions and the air ambulance had landed on the eerily silent road. I didn’t see the accident but I was six cars from the front of the stopped traffic. During the one-hour wait, I couldn’t help but marvel at the efficiency and effectiveness of the emergency services and of course felt great sympathy for the motorcyclist whose life had just been changed, maybe forever. It shows, as if you didn’t already know this, that in life we don’t know what’s round the corner. An hour is a while, long enough to write these words, and the accident has got me thinking about photographic legacy. Again. Stop me if you’ve heard this one before – it is a subject close to my heart – but it is worth having a doomsday strategy in place for your most prized pictures (and not just pictures of course) for the simple reason we don’t know what awaits us. Oh, just to reinforce the point, when I got home, that evening’s local TV news carried a story about a woman who lost her house in a fire. No one was hurt but all of her possessions had gone. She didn’t mention feeling sad about losing her TV, watch or sofa but she was desperate about losing the pictures of her children. Whatever your motivation for taking pictures, this is worth a thought. It might be as simple as having two external drives, one backing up the other, and when you go away, the back-up goes with you or to a friend. Or you could buy a RAID drive so if one hard drive does go kaput, one (or more) keeps going. Or you could use a cloud – assuming you have fast broadband. The thing is, you don’t need to back up every picture. It might just be a few hundred.

One of my plans is to export all the images I truly, truly like as DNG files and these go on to a portable hard drive (which in turn is backed up regularly). A few of these then go into my cloud. It took ages to start with but now I just add files after each shoot, so it’s quite quick. There is no denying that such labour does take time, effort and money, too. But then, how much do you value your pictures? London’s Docklands Light Railway is 30 years old this year. I started a photo project on the DLR two years ago, primarily motivated by the need not to sit at home alone. After 24 visits it is still ongoing. My plan was to stop when I got bored but there is no sign of that. There is so much to shoot and getting the best light with the right combination of trains and people is a tough, time-sapping but brilliant challenge. My other big project on the country’s piers is also still in progress, but despite that I am already thinking of what next. Viaducts appeal. Amazing structures, usually rich in history, set in landscape (urban and rural) sounds fun and there are plenty all around the UK, too. Big football grounds on non-match days appeal as well; so do wind turbines, glacial landforms and standing stones – but perhaps I should do something more people-orientated. I don't know; we’ll see. Meanwhile, I’m off to back up my latest pictures. Have a safe and productive month.

Register on photographynews.co.uk and you can read Photography News online on your smartphone, tablet or computer as soon as it’s published.

news

ISSN 2059-7584 When you have finished with this newspaper, please recycle it

N

E

D

I

T

M

J

R

K

M

S

Z

A

W

H

K

P

V

D

A

S

J

M

A

R

R

U

D

G

F

R

T

Z

S

W

O

D

A

H

S

I

B

R

P

W

K

K

O

A

Z

D

X

V

A

O

A

F

I

L

T

E

R

E

O

P

F

W

U

F

G

O

D

C

D

R

R

R

A

I

L

W

A

Y

I

L

E

E

A

L

I

N

T

T

T

M

R

F

M

M

L

A

J

R

G

C

A

U

L

I

E

R

A

N

X

B

E

N

C

E

U

V

X

G

P

D

I

J

Y

K

C

M

S

Z

K

P

T

E

O

D

S

T

V

B

J

X

M

L

O

R

D

A

O

Y

U

J

L

P

Z

O

P

B

C

R

I

L

U

O

B

P

C

Z

Y

K

O

N

C

E

T

X

F

T

N

O

T

Z

C

P

N

P

N

H

T

G

N

E

L

Frame Land Laptop Length Paul

Advertising Team

Design Team

Editorial director Roger Payne

Sales director Matt Snow 01223 499453 mattsnow@bright-publishing.com

Design director Andy Jennings Senior designers Mark George & Laura Bryant Designer Lucy Woolcomb

Contributing editor Kingsley Singleton kingsleysingleton@bright-publishing.com

Advertising manager Krishan Parmar 01223 499462 krishanparmar@bright-publishing.com

Digital editor Jemma Dodd jemmadodd@bright-publishing.com

Key accounts Mike Elliott mikeelliott@bright-publishing.com

Senior sub editor Lisa Clatworthy

Sales executive Shannon Walford 01223 499457

Sub editors Siobhan Godwood & Felicity Evans

People Premium Railway Project Reflector

Rucksack Shadows Strap Tablet Wall

If you do not want to receive any marketing information from Bright Publishing or our partners, in your email entry please type NO INFO.

Editorial Team Editor Will Cheung FRPS 01223 499469 willcheung@bright-publishing.com

Bright Publishing Ltd, Bright House, 82 High Street, Sawston, Cambridgeshire, CB22 3HJ www.bright-publishing.com

F

Clubs Dynamic Edit Filter Fixed

Read Photography News online

Photography

B

Publishing Team Managing directors Andy Brogden & Matt Pluck As well as your local camera club, you can pick up Photography News in-store from: Calumet, Cameraworld, Castle Cameras, Jessops, London Camera Exchange, Park Cameras, Wilkinson Cameras

Photography News is published 13 times a year by Bright Publishing Ltd, Bright House, 82 High Street, Sawston, Cambridge CB22 3HJ. No part of this magazine can be used without prior written permission of Bright Publishing Ltd. Photography News is a registered trademark of Bright Publishing Ltd. The advertisements published in Photography News that have been written, designed or produced by employees of Bright Publishing Ltd remain the copyright of Bright Publishing Ltd and may not be reproduced without the written consent of the publisher. The content of this publication does not necessarily reflect the views of the publisher. While Bright Publishing makes every effort to ensure accuracy, it can’t be guaranteed. Street pricing at the time of writing is quoted for products.

Photography News 48  

Issue 48 of Photography News