FRAME - A Photography Magazine by PhotoCommune - issue 4

Page 1

AUG, 2021 | 04

INTERVIEW

MAXXETTO & BHARAT CHOUDHARY FEMALE IN FOCUS GARIMA AGARWAL

PHOTO FEATURE MOHIT SHARMA

LEARN WITH FRAME HOW TO CREATE STUNNING BLACK & WHITE IMAGES IN PHOTOSHOP

REVIEW TAMRON 150-500MM F5-6.7 Di III-A VC VXD TAMRON 11-20MM F2.8 Di III-A RXD

“Confidence is

like a muscle THE MORE YOU STRETCH IT, THE MORE IT EXPANDS.” Cover story NATHASHA AR KUMAR



FRAME CONTENT COVER STORY

Nathasha AR Kumar INTERVIEW

Maxxetto Bharat Choudhary REVIEW

Tamron 150-500mm f5-6.7 Di III - VC VXD Tamron 11-20mm f2.8 Di III - A RXD FEMALE IN FOCUS

Garima Agarwal LEARN WITH FRAME

How to create stunning Black & White images in Photoshop PHOTO FEATURE

Mohit Sharma WHAT`S NEW

Update with Tech World CREDITS EDITORIAL

DESIGN & PRODUCTION

COVER STORY

CHIEF EDITOR Dimple Choudhary

DESIGN Amit Kumar Gangal

Photography - Idris Ahmed Makeup - Suruchi Virmani Retouching - Amit Kumar Gangal

PRODUCTION TEAM Amit Kumar Gangal Yeashu Yuvraj PROOF READER : Ujjayant Sinha Puneet Jain PUBLISHER & EDITOR Idris Ahmed

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EDITOR’S NOTE “Hello. We meet again”, waved this little girl across a traffic signal. I remember taking her photograph on a rainy night, all happy and excited to be jumping in a puddle. Today, it’s hot and humid. But she is still excited, probably not to see me but possibly for the memory we created that rainy evening. I waved and drove back with a smile on my face. I realised the power of a memory and the power of a photograph that keeps that memory alive. We often talk about telling a story through our photographs but unknowingly we are creating a parallel cinema while doing so. Ice-breaking, Endless conversations, lasting friendships, sharing intimate moments, being uncomfortable and then finding the comfort zone, learning skills and even life lessons….. are just a few of the things that erases the line between the photographer and the explorer in you. The beauty lies in peeling off the many layers that you do not even know exists. Your life is your personal diary that might be read long after you are gone. The smell of those pages will only be felt when you have rubbed them with your experiences. Write a song, a blessing, a love note, a moment of confession, a wish or just sprinkle them with the sound of your laughter or a smudge of a teardrop but don’t leave them untouched. This issue of Frame is dedicated to celebrate how photography has shaped each one of us. It is dedicated to our beloved brother Danish Siddiqui who the world might remember as a Pulitzer prize winning photographer but we will remember him as a Braveheart, a story-teller, a soldier, a philosopher, a student, a friend, a father and the protagonist of his personal diary, the pages of which are full of stories that saw the world change. While the world remembers the photographs, let us remember the part within us that we left behind and the part that we became in doing so. Let us not forget, we too were a subject, a subject that will live beyond our existence. To the heroes in all of us. Cheers!!!

Dimple Choudhary



TRIBUTE “While I enjoy covering news stories – from business to politics to sports – what I enjoy most is capturing the human face of a breaking story.” Danish Siddiqui

Danish Siddiqui became a journalist after a Master’s degree in Mass Communications from Delhi’s Jamia Milia Islamia University. He joined Reuters after stints as a correspondent with the Hindustan Times newspaper and the TV Today channel. A Reuters photographer since 2010, Siddiqui’s work has spanned wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, the Rohingya crisis, pro-democracy protests in Hong Kong and unrest in India. He was part of a team that was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for the feature photography in 2018 for documenting Myanmar’s Rohingya refugee crisis, a series described by the judging committee as “shocking photographs that exposed the world to the violence Rohingya refugees faced in fleeing Myanmar.” Friends and colleagues describe him as a man who cared deeply about the stories he

covered, carrying out meticulous research before embarking on assignments and always focusing on the people caught up in the news. Danish once said, “What I enjoy most is capturing the human face of a breaking story. I shoot for the common man who wants to see and feel a story from a place where he can’t be present himself.” His searing photographs capturing the coronavirus pandemic in India have spread across the world. Last year, while covering sectarian unrest in a Delhi suburb, Siddiqui captured a Muslim man being beaten by a frenzied Hindu mob. These photographs were part of a selection of Reuters pictures of the year in 2020. Danish Siddiqui was killed on July 16 2021 while covering the Afghan conflict for the news agency.


COVER STORY


“Confidence is like a muscle. THE MORE YOU STRETCH IT, THE MORE IT EXPANDS.” Featuring NATHASHA AR KUMAR

By Dimple Choudhary

The brainchild of two successful business ventures, a community commerce platforms - Asort and a bohemian sustainable & conscious lifestyle brand - Vajor (Way-jo-or) with an impressive growing community and a higher purpose than just business.



If you spot a 14-year-old girl enjoying an ice cream outside McDonald’s, you would certainly not think much about it. But if someone were to tell you that there she is in a foreign land, all alone, on a business trip savoring each scoop to celebrate her newfound confidence, freedom and ability to make a difference, you would be swept off your feet. This is the story of that confident girl who had big dreams and a bigger will. Leaving a lucrative opportunity in Hong Kong with an international Airlines, she dropped out of college and returned to India to start her own company at the age of 19. Meet Nathasha AR Kumar, the brainchild of two successful business ventures, a community commerce platforms - Asort and a bohemian sustainable & conscious lifestyle brand - Vajor (Way-jo-or) with an impressive growing community and a higher purpose than just business.

Born into a family with a long line of Halwai (sweet shop owners in India), Nathasha spent the first decade of her rebellious childhood in a joint family away from her father while he was trying to establish a good life for them in Hong Kong. Raised by her maternal and paternal family members in a part-orthodox part-liberal way of life, Nathasha went onto become a rather strong headed individual. Moving to Hong Kong at the age of 10 years was a culture shock for her, but the silver lining was to have the entire family in one place. “Life in Hong Kong was initially tough due to language barrier, as I came from a Hindi medium School. But the years spent with my nana watching him read and write came handy and I practiced hard to overcome that barrier. However, I still faced racism and studied in a school with first-generation migrant kids from Nepal, Bangladesh, Pakistan, Africa, China, and we were being taught and raised to be


blue-collared work force with very basic education.” recollects Natasha. Luckily, her parents were enterprising and started a fabric shop as a side hustle. Natasha would often travel to China with her father, meeting vendors to negotiate and procure fabric. She soon started doing this solo. With this fabric they began supplying Hijabs to Pakistani, Afghani and Bangladeshi immigrants. Natasha recall this as a life-changing year. “This experience was crucial as it taught me how to negotiate better, allowed me to travel with freedom, create my own wealth and filled me with confidence. This newborn freedom was empowering and I started picking up various odd jobs to support my education” She progressed to working with McDonalds but was embarrassed about her job and would often hide behind a mask. Luckily, Natasha found an opportunity of teaching Indian art and culture to the kids of some rich and affluent people. Amused by their wealth, she would often ask them about their family business. Natasha remembers, “Someone once told me they supply pencils in Africa and for a 15-year-old, I was amused that one can create so much wealth by selling a thing as small as that. My belly started filling up with many desires of a luxurious life, and I was certain that I wanted to do something of my own.” Natasha believes saying yes can lead one to great experiences in life and recollects how she became an overnight success story at school. “I hated Math and could never clear an exam, but my Math teacher saw something in me and shared an opportunity with Cathy Pacific. The hunger

to learn something new pushed me into applying and I made it through simply by saying yes. I was felicitated in the school and became popular overnight just for being brave.” Feeling rather unfulfilled with the monotony of an institutional regime and robotic way of teaching, Natasha didn’t see any value for her hard-earned money she was spending as her college fee. She felt the migrants were taught differently and were expected to stay away from the white-collar jobs and that was not acceptable to her. She soon dropped out of her college and started her entrepreneurial journey at 17. Two years later, at the age of 19, Natasha came home to India to her second dose of culture shock. A decade after she left, her perception of India didn’t match the reality. This made her job here extremely challenging. To make matters worse, Natasha got burnt due to an accidental fire that broke at her rented place with only half a bucket of water to her rescue. The first aid was flawed, and the infection grew to a point that she had to go through the painful process of grafting. “I was broken, and my ego took a big hit. Doctors were certain that the scars won’t go but I was living in my cocoon. I was always in the public eye. People would ask me odd questions, even during the meetings and I would hate it. But today, I can proudly say that my scars are a part of who I am.” shares Natasha. Time went by and she decided to take it all in her stride and do things differently. The E-commerce business was just setting in and starting big in the small city of Chandigarh boosted her confidence. In






just a couple of years, Natasha along with her businebtss partner made it into a 50-crore turnover company. She points to visualization being the ultimate tool in life. “If you can visualize it, you can dream it and eventually create it. Today we are sitting with such wider scope of things that can get you work, money, recognition and legacy simply because one can visualize.” She quickly adds that there is no shortcut to success. “Initially it is the fire that will ignite but eventually one has to build the skill. Evolution is a must as upgrading is the only recipe to get along, go long.” The idea of growing big brought her back to Delhi and Natasha spent the next 2 years attending seminars, exhibitions, meeting people, watching TEDx and getting to visualize things. “I was ready to spread wings. I met neuroscientists, doctors, authors, artists and everybody would talk about their purpose of life. I realized that I was doing things all along for the fire in my belly and to prove myself, but I did not have a real purpose. So, I started being more mindful and created a new lifestyle brand Vajor to offer more sustainable products. I understood the power and value of a community. Being around the right mindset can help you with immense personal and professional growth. And in that journey and process of creating Vajor, I found myself.” she fondly remembers. As she treads on a spiritual path, Natasha feels she has endless possibilities. She has shifted her energy from chasing a profitable P&L to creating artistic and tangible wealth that can be shared with her community, her tribe. She chose the road less travelled but is convinced that it is in the right direction.

“Sustainability is a long and tough but worthy battle. Today’s consumer is both conscious and educated which will only help curb green washing and push brands to adopt fair and sustainable practices.” Feels Natasha. Natasha has a vision for the new India and feels it’s not competition but the collaboration model that will take everyone a long way. She aims at encouraging the micro-entrepreneurs to flourish and create a sustainable business proposition by being intimate, warm and personal. She is quick to advise the young entrepreneurs “Earning money might seem difficult. But the bigger challenge will be to sustain it. Say yes to opportunities, be willing to sacrifice and make tough choices. Sometimes you may get lucky, but only discipline will pull you out of rainy days. Don’t give yourself any option other than being committed to that discipline and you will never look back.” Like many businesses in the market, the pandemic did take a toll on her business and expansion plans, but spirituality has made her hungrier than ever. Natasha concludes by saying “There are miles to go. And I am ready for the world.”

Photography - Idris Ahmed Makeup - Suruchi Vermani Retouching - Amit Kumar Gangal


INTERVIEW

In Conversation with Photographer MASSIMO

BIETTI - @maxxetto

This is the sadness of modern photography. There are only endless courses and now portfolio evaluations, by former great photographers who hardly work anymore, to prepare you for a saturated market that doesn’t need any new photographer. Let’s meet the man of the hour, through conversation with Idris Ahmed




When did you first discover the magic of photography?

Massimo Bietti - From early age, I was an introverted child addicted to images and I spent my time cutting out photos from newspapers, I must say, especially of beautiful girls in the beginning and then a bit of everything. Growing up we must at least pretend to have other interests. Yor images reflect a close bond between you and your subjects. How do you choose your subjects? Is it a long process?

overcome, a mix that makes you understand who you are. One anecdote in particular; maybe I’ll tell it next time .

🙂

You have traveled to many countries, is there one that marked you more than others?

Massimo Bietti - Well, surely the best moment was seeing the sunrise on Xingping Mountain, in China. But I was there with a girl I loved, so everything was raised to the top. How do you prepare for your trips?

Massimo Bietti - You have to plan a little, but Massimo Bietti - I try to spend time in the places I visit, make them feel like home, the feeling must be: like walking into a cafe and asking for the usual drink. Only in this way the eyes begin to see and the mind will open up to others. What is your best memory as a photographer? An anecdote you would like to share?

Massimo Bietti -Photography around the world fills you with memories, moments of incredible beauty and difficult moments that you have

only a little. It is certainly better to be carried away by emotions and to be able to decide each time when to stop and when to leave. Being well aware that less is more, I only pack a few clothes for my travels. But unfortunately, I cannot apply the same principle to my photographic equipment, perhaps, due to insecurity. I, therefore find myself carrying a very heavy backpack, which is very good for my physical health, but i have many doubts of the same result in my photography.



Year 2020 was a tough one. How did you keep yourself motivated? And have you already started new projects in 2021, if yes then kindly share what is the latest you are working on?

Massimo Bietti - I just got depressed at home, fell asleep in my laziness, that’s the harsh truth. So what you see posted on my Instagram account are some photos I take while I’m carrying out my project, which I think will take another ten years to finish, so today it is absolutely premature to talk about it. You also shoot glamour and advertising. However, you don’t talk about it much. Is there a specific reason for that ?

photos of my adventures as a simple hobby. Instead, about two years ago, I decided to try to start a career as a photographer in my city, Milan, Italy and therefore, in fashion and also advertising. So I put myself back into the business, just before the arrival of the Covid virus. You can tell I had excellent timing. What advice would you give someone who would like to become a photographer today?

Massimo Bietti - Digital has made photography available to everyone. The arrival of the web has made all customers aware of the possibility of working at much lower prices. For these reasons, being a photographer today is a good way to starve.

Massimo Bietti - In reality, I was born as an advertiser, I was an art director for twenty years, then I made the best decision of my life, to quit my job and travel the world. I had to do it before I became an old man with no strength and full of regrets. So, for ten years, I have practically always only traveled, then over time I started taking souvenir

I’ll tell you how things are at least for me. The profession of the travel photographer is dead or rather exists for a few selected ones. It happened many years ago with the arrival of the internet. Why pay to see a photographer’s work done in a print magazine, when you can see and keep dreaming about your next travels by surfing the web for free?



Those who still do that work today, have had to become a sort of tourist guide for organized trips, trapping themselves to continually visit the same places with groups of strangers travelers. Instead, the profession of the photographer still exists at the service of fashion and advertising. Only companies that have to show new products need communication and brand image. Then, if one wants, there is the market for weddings and events. But this is another chapter and perhaps the least interesting. With the shortage of real work, photographers turn into teachers This is the sadness of modern photography. There are only endless courses and now portfolio evaluations, by former great photographers who hardly work anymore, to prepare you for a saturated market that doesn’t need any new photographer. However, today there are also some new opportunities: If you have millions of followers

on your social media, you become a trend setter and you will be contacted by brands to be a kind of new testimonial for their products, Long story short, with the photographer’s showcase you will actually be an influencer of various marketing products. Or be so good that brands are looking for you to communicate their products through your photos or videos, as Jordi Koalitic does, for example. But the turning point is only to be able to invent a new language. So, here is the only advice I want to give to those who want to take the photographer’s path today. Learn from the great masters of the past. But do not waste time doing their own things, you will never be able to do better because you will always be compared to them and finish second. Invent something new, even if it seems that everything has already been done. Show the world your different point of view. If you do it first, you will be also first in life.


INTERVIEW


In Conversation with Photographer BHARAT

CHOUDHARY

I moved to Geneva in 2014. I lived there for almost five years. And I can tell you that I have never seen a land prettier or more enchanting than Switzerland.



But that was also the time when I had begun to question my relevance as a photographer, and why exactly I wanted photography to be the way of my life. I wanted more out of life - I still do and photography was falling short of providing me the happiness, calmness, or the purpose that I seek as a human being. Deep within, I sort of felt that I should move away from photography in order to do more, and be more. But I also kept pushing myself to photograph. I kept telling myself that I had left behind so much in order to pursue photography and now if I abandon photography, where would I go and what would I do? It was this internal duel, this dilemma, that arrested me in a weird zone of melancholy, sentimentality and nostalgia. This started to influence my thoughts, my behavior and my

photography too. I do not exactly remember when I started taking these pictures, but it must have been 2016, I believe. My initiation and education as a documentary photographer kept influencing my ways of seeing and photographing. A lesson that I learnt very early on, one that I still hold on to, was to not become the story myself. I am not fond of works where the photographer seeks attention by obsessive navel-gazing and narcissistic explorations of the personal. I often find no reason to talk about myself or my issues through my work. But sometimes, it is a struggle to ignore the existential maze or to escape the storms that emerge within. So, without giving it too much of a thought, I just kept making



photographs of whatever I was feeling and experiencing as a person. Around the same time, I was having many conversations with some friends who were helping me heal and overcome my unhappiness. Most of these conversations were around life and death, love, loneliness, existentialism and spirituality. I wonder today whether my photography was influencing my words or were the conversations guiding my photographs. But after a while, all of it started to make me feel better and alive. It also inspired me to travel to India where I recovered further and regained my complete self. To be honest, the photographs were perhaps not so important at that time. I was actually not even

too conscious about what was I photographing and why. But now when I look at them, these photographs do mean something to me. Friends often refer to these photographs and words as a ‘project’, which is partly my fault also because that is how I have presented this work to outsiders. But the truth is that I was not guided by a project or a story idea and I also do not think that there is or should be a narrative in here. I still view it as a personal diary that holds some random photographs and lots of personal conversations. It reminds me of a certain phase in my life where I wanted to reject photography, but ended up being more attached to it.


PHOTO FEATURE

MOHIT SHARMA




My corporate job took me to Kolkata a few years back. A treat to the travelling soul, Kolkata is an absolute paradise for street photography. It is what made me pick-up my first DSLR and shoot the unadulterated heritage and life on the streets of Bengal. Soon I began to uncover a passion I didn’t know. I decided to club my love for the photographic lens with music, which has been a part of me since early days. As they say, it is never too late to pursue your passion. Soon, I started shooting club gigs. The overwhelming response to my initial set of shots inspired me to take up music photography as my main genre. Since then I have shot performances of various gigs, concerts and music festivals. It has been an exciting journey so far. However, there is no denying the fact that pursuing your passion along with a full time corporate job can be difficult but you want it at any cost. I do face my share of challenges but I am glad I continue

to pursue it. Shooting a gig for me means finishing my corporate job, shooting, coming back, spending the night editing the images and then being present again for your meeting at work the next morning. It does get difficult to manage schedules at times and unfortunately, I have to let go of opportunities that come my way to shoot some of my favourite music artists/ bands or festivals. Nonetheless, I find my passion very rewarding in terms of the immense love and appreciation I get from music lovers and artists who follow and appreciate my work. I was humbled to have received the Best Music Photographer award for 2019 in India by The Indian Music Diaries for a high score in clarity of expression, emotion, style and aesthetic. Such encouragement and support from friends, family and fans keeps my passion alive.


FEMALE IN FOCUS

Garima Agarwal I am currently documenting the struggles of children coming from low-income background and how the Covid-19 pandemic has affected their education and life as a whole




It’s the intent and impact which has been driving me to practice photography all these years. When I started, I had no idea whatsoever that what kind of imagery I would be making. After completing my Masters from NIFT and while working with a fashion magazine, I joined a photography club and travelled to a few places. While travelling I realized that photography gives me inner peace and a sense of freedom which became my motivation to change the area of work and hence started practicing this form of art full time. Initially, without any formal education in photography or any kind of guidance, like any other beginner, I stumbled and failed several times. However, I was clear on the fact that I had started photography for myself and that dream of becoming a better Photographer every day kept me going. While I kept travelling and making photographs, I often pondered on questions like - What is it that I want to do? What kind of work I want to produce? Does my work even make sense? I was unable to make sense which made me feel stuck. After struggling with my mental health issues for three years, from 2020 things started shaping up

and during this period I started working on a few personal projects. I am deeply inspired by the work and humility of master photographer, Mr. Amit Mehra, whose guidance in photography and life helped me in shaping up my current and future projects and hence, finding my voice. The subject that I am deeply connected to is “Education for Children”. I have always been driven by the fact that education plays a vital role in shaping up one’s life. Hence most of my works revolves around the education process, children and related mental health issues. As a part of a long term project, I am currently documenting the struggles of children coming from low-income background and how the Covid-19 pandemic has affected their education and life as a whole. One other long term project that I am working on is in the area of Community Service Kitchen -Langar in the Sikh community and how they are keeping humanity alive. I have always been a great admirer of people who are empathetic towards fellow citizens and it inspires me so much to see how we can lead our lives in co-existence and that in harmony.


Other than this story, I have always been fascinated by the varied culture of our country. I am working on the “Havelis of Shekhawati” for the past 4 years and was fortunate enough to be a Grantee of reputed Sahapedia Frames. It further got a platform to be published in various magazines namely Man’s World, eShe Magazine, 101India, Inspiro India etc. I take inspiration from the people who despite hardships break all the barriers and live for their dreams. Few other sources are the books on different subjects and photography, works of fellow photographers and masters and life quotes. Also, I have been fortunate enough to

have an extremely supportive family - my parents and my partner. Also, some senior photographers in the fraternity namely Mr. Idris Ahmed and Mr. Ranjan Sharma who continuously extended their support, motivation and guidance while I was struggling with mental health issues. Being a lifelong student of photography and life as a whole, I believe our life experiences deeply affect what we photograph and how we become as a human. So that’s what I aspire to be – a good human and thus bring that in my work, all the goodness and positivity that we have around us.

www.garimaagarwal.com



How to create stunning

Black & White images in Photoshop LEARN WITH FRAME When it comes to converting color images into black and white, Photoshop has come a long way. It has moved beyond ‘destauration’ and ‘grayscale’ and now, we have so many options, which empowers the user to make stunning monochromes with precise control. I will be discussing a few of my personal favorites but best is to explore and create your own workflow

Using Black & White Adjustment Layer


Adjustment Layer is one of the best and the easiest tools to convert color photos into black and white. Step 1: Make a Black and White Adjustment Layer: Start by creating a Black and White Adjustment Layer. From the Layers Panel, click on the New Adjustment Layer icon and select Black and White.

Step2: Adjust the Color Slider in the properties panel: The Black and White adjustment layer will desaturate your image. Now go to the Properties Panel, you’ll notice six sliders: Reds, Yellows, Greens, Cyans, Blues, and Magentas. These sliders control the brightness of the grayscale version of the corresponding colors. You can use the slider to create better contrast and tonality in your image.

Step3: Use On-image Adjustment Tool: Instead of using the sliders to adjust the tonality of your photo, you can click-and-drag over the image to adjust a particular area. To adjust a specific color in your photo, you can select the On-image Adjustment Tool found on the top left of the properties panel. Then click-and-drag directly over your image to modify the color slider for the predominant color at that location. Dragging to the left makes the selected section darker while dragging to the right makes it brighter.

Using Channel Mixer Adjustment Layer Apply the Channel Mixer as an Adjustment Layer in Photoshop for a range of black & white effects. You can either check monochrome and adjust the sliders to fine-tune your conversion, or simply choose one of the excellent black and white presets from the dropdown at the top of the settings.

Step1: It is helpful to preview how each color channel gives us a different black and white version of the image from left to right - Red channel, Green channel, Blue channel. Once we have some idea we can start mixing the three RGB color channels together.

Step2: Now, we can add our Channel Mixer. Click on the New Adjustment Layer icon at the bottom of the Layers palette and select Channel Mixer from the list.

Step 3: In a moment, we will use the Channel Mixer to mix our 3 color channels together. But, before we do, since we are using the Channel Mixer to create a black and white version of the image, select the Monochrome option. This will convert the image to black and white in the document window and if you look at the Output Channel option in the Channel Mixer dialog box, you will see that we are now creating a custom Gray channel.


Step 4: In the center of the Channel Mixer are the controls that allow us to adjust how much of each channel is being used to create the black and white version we see in the document window. By default, Photoshop combines 40% of the Red channel, 40% of the Green channel and 20% of the Blue channel to create the initial black and white version of the image: The reason why the Red and Green channels are given preference over the Blue channel is because of how our eyes work, with reds and greens being easier for us to see than blues. Here’s what my image looks like with the default values:

the final result as it was when you started. If you go beyond 100%, it means there’s a good chance you’re losing some of your highlight detail by forcing the lightest areas of the image to pure white. Anything less than 100% means your image is now darker than it was originally. It is a good idea to keep your Histogram palette open on your screen as you are adjusting the individual channel values. You will find the Histogram palette grouped in between the Navigator and Info palettes. If you notice a spike appearing on the right edge of the histogram, it means you are losing highlight detail in the image. To correct the problem, either lower the percentage of the channel you just increased or lower one of the other channels to compensate for it.

The histogram shows us the tonal range of the image. A spike on the right edge means pixels have been pushed to pure white. The black and white version of the image using the default Channel Mixer settings.

To increase or decrease the percentage amount for a specific channel, simply click on the channel’s slider and drag it left or right. Dragging the slider towards the right will increase the amount while dragging it towards the left will decrease it. You can also adjust the channels by clicking directly inside their input boxes and increasing or decreasing the values with the Up and Down arrow keys on your keyboard, which will increase or decrease the value in 1% increments. Holding down your Shift key while pressing the Up or Down arrow keys will increase or decrease the value in 10% increments. This gives us a more accurate way of adjusting the percentages since dragging the sliders can be a little clumsy. The 100% Rule: The general rule when adjusting the amounts for each channel is that you want to keep the total amount of all three channels equaling 100% so that the overall brightness level of the image is the same in

To understand it properly, it is important to experiment . So, do not be afraid to make drastic changes to the sliders at first. Since we are working with an adjustment layer, the original photo remains safe and unharmed on the background layer in the layers palette. Now, fine-tune the percentage amounts of each channel until you have the results you want while keeping the total amount of all three channels as 100%.

Here is my final black and white result after mixing all three channels together with the Channel Mixer.


Using Gradient Map Adjustment Layer Step 1: Add a Gradient Map adjustment layer and keep the default black and white gradient as the selected preset. This will effectively convert your image to black and white because the tones will all be mapped against the black to white scale, depending on the underlying tone. Initially the image looks a bit flat with no added contrast but this can be easily controlled.

The default Gradient Map black & white conversion

Step 2: Now, click on the gradient preset to open up the gradient editor. Just add two extra color stops, a black one towards the black side and a white one towards the white side.

Adding some additional color stops to increase contrast

These extra color stops modify your black and white points. Just adjust them until you get something that looks just right for your particular image. And that’s

it! Now, you have a black and white image that really pops, thanks to the added contrast! This technique works especially well when your image has a lot of tonal variations to start with. As mentioned earlier, do not be afraid to explore and to understand it better, move the adjustment siders to extreme and then make fine adjustments. Just remember that practice is the key to master any editing software. So, practice on various images for better understanding.


What`s New !!

Update with Tech World

WHAT`S NEW Tamron 35-150mm F2-2.8 Di III VXD for fullframe Sony E-mount on the way Tamron is working on a 35-150mm F2-2.8 Di III VXD lens for full-frame Sony E-mount bodies. Details are a bit thin at this point, but the lens features a versatile, travelfriendly focal range and will use the company’s ‘VXD’ linear focus motor for swift autofocus speeds (according to Tamron). With one notable exception, the lens offers similar ergonomics to the company’s just-announced 28-75mm F2.8 Di III VXD G2, with focus and zoom rings that are well demarcated from the lens barrel thanks to their slightly greater diameter. However, the zoom and focus rings’ positions are switched. By using the Tamron Lens Utility and optional connector cable, users will be able to change the function of the Focus Set button and focus ring. The Focus Set button can be programmed to switch between two pre-set focus positions or jump to one predefined position or to any custom function assignable to the camera’s custom buttons. The focus ring can be switched to operate as an aperture ring and in manual focus mode its rotation direction and mode of operation (linear vs. non-linear) can be customized. The lens is expected to ship this year, with pricing to be determined.

H&Y Filters announces Revoring Black Mist filter that fits almost any lens without stepup rings

H&Y Filters has announced the launch of a new series of Black Mist filters that aim to solve the issue of step-up rings and adapters. The H&Y Revoring series launched last year with a VND + CPL combination filter and has now been expanded with the Black Mist filter. What separates H&Y’s filters from traditional filters is that the Revoring offers a variable diameter with selfretracting blades, allowing you to use it on lenses with different filter sizes without needing to use step-up rings. The Revoring has an aperture-like design that can fit different filter diameters. The new H&Y Black Mist attaches magnetically to the existing Revoring VND + CPL filters or can be used by itself. But what is a Black Mist filter? The filter suppresses highlights, smooths skin blemishes and offers a more cinematic look for still photography and video applications. It comes in three strengths, 1/8, 1/4, and 1/2.

Olympus Releases M.Zuiko Digital ED 8-25mm F4.0 Pro The Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 8-25mm F4.0 Pro is a compact, high-end lens designed for photographers using Micro Four Thirds camera bodies. Covering a 35mm-equivalent focal length range of 16-50mm and boasting surprisingly good macro performance, it shows great promise as a versatile, single-carry lens for landscape, street and travel photography. Lens is now available online, kindly check out the mentioned link for more details. https://bit.ly/3Bzcc0P


Sony ZV-E10 adds interchangeable lenses and APS-C sensor to its ZV vlogger range Sony has announced a new camera for its vloggercentric ZV lineup called the ZV-E10, and this one’s more than a little different to the first model. The most obvious change from the ZV-1 is the interchangeable lens mount on the front. Like so many of Sony’s other cameras, it’s an E-mount, which means lots of lenses available to fit it. It’s still a really compact camera though, designed to be carried around and shooting handheld. And it’s not just the mount that’s new, it has an APS-C sensor too, just like the larger A6000-series models. Specifically, it’s a 24.2-megapixel CMOS sensor. It’s capable of shooting 4K at 30fps, with full pixel readout and no binning. Like the ZV-1, it features a number of vlog-dedicated functions. There is a background defocus button for quickly adding more depth of field and a blurry background to your video, plus ‘Product showcase mode’ which automatically and quickly focuses on an item when you hold it up to the camera. There’s a face auto exposure feature that keeps your face well exposed even as you move in and out of shadows and bright areas, and a screen that swivels all the way around to the side.

It’s a Sony camera, and that means you get fast auto-focus, real-time tracking plus - in stills mode - animal and human eye focusing too. One of the other big new features is its easy livestreaming capabilities. It uses a technology called UVC, which means you can plug it into the USB port on your PC/Mac and use it as a webcam for streaming without any additional software to install. Easy plug and play. You can attach other peripherals to it as well. Sony’s multi-interface shoe is versatile enough for a host of accessories, while the micro HDMI, 2x 3.5mm ports and the USB-C ensure you can plug mics in or connect your camera to a screen or wired headphones. For those needing some video/sensor specs: it can capture 4:2:0 8-bit quality footage, with fullHD slowmotion capture up to 120 frames per second. S-Log 2 and 3 ensure colour graders have something to play with, while HLG availability also means HDR footage is possible. You get 425 phase detection autofocus points covering 84 per cent of the sensor too.

Panasonic Lumix GH6 official: Arriving before end of year for ‘around $2,500’ It’s official: Panasonic has announced that the Lumix GH6 is in development. But not the kind of it’s going to arrive at some point kind of announcement. Nope, the GH6 will be available in stores before 2021 is over and out - and, the company says, for “around $2,500”.

Just how high-end are we talking? Well, the GH6 will be able to shoot 4:2:2 10-bit Cinema 4K at 60p with no limit to recording time. There’s also 4K 120p and 5.7k 60p options, we’re presuming also with no limit to recording time (though that second detail isn’t confirmed).

The announcement may seem peculiarly timed - because the GH5 Mark II was announced in tandem - but the GH6’s aim is to net upgraders and videographers seeking for the utmost in video specification.

As the also-just-announced GH5 M2 supports live-streaming via Wi-Fi, we suspect the GH6 will also pick up this feature - and, potentially, other Panasonic cameras moving forward.

Not everything is known about the camera just yet, of course, it’s more a tease of what to expect. We can confirm that an all-new sensor and processing engine will be on board, though, which will open the lid on various video specifications to a high-end level.

So that’s about as much as is known right now: the Lumix GH6 will be Panasonic’s Micro Four Thirds pioneer, the model in pursuit of video perfection. More specification and detail as and when we know them.


REVIEW

TAMRON 150-500MM F5-6.7 Di III VC VXD lens is designed and constructed with a strong emphasis on

compact size and usability without compromising image quality Review by IDRIS AHMED



TAMRON 150-500MM f5-6.7 Di III VC VXD I started quite early in the morning to reach the Dhanauri wetlands, a birdwatcher’s paradise, to test how Tamron’s 150-500mm f5-6.7 Di III VC VXD (Dedicated lens for Sony E-mount) would perform in the field. I was quite keen to test its focusing speed and ability to perform in critical conditions such as against light and performance at the widest aperture. Throughout testing I used Alpha 7 III with 35mm full-frame image sensor.



The optical construction of this lens features 25 elements in 16 groups. The generous and effective use of special lens elements including 1 XLD (eXtra Low Dispersion), five LD (Low Dispersion), and two Hybrid Aspherical lens elements thoroughly control aberrations, including axial chromatic aberrations. While shooting with this lens for the first time, I felt that it was designed keeping a photographer ‘on the move’ in mind. It is sturdy, compact and grips very well while shooting. This tough beauty measures only 8.3 inches at 150mm and when fully extended at 500mm, it goes to 11.1 inches. Overall, I found this lens to be evenly balanced while mounted on a lighter body, such as the Sony A7 III, considering its weight (1.88kg). It also is weather resistant, which comes very handy when shooting in rough conditions. I remember on my second day of the shoot it started drizzling and the lens had water drops all over but all thanks to its sturdy built that it could endure inclement weather so easily. Another point, which impressed me, was its swift transition from 150mm to 500mm in just a one-touch move. It is also equipped with a zoom lock switch and the FLEX zoom lock feature; mechanism quickly locks or unlocks the zoom at any position simply by sliding the zoom ring. Photographers can shoot from any angle without the zoom extending unintentionally.

The Tamron’s 150-500mm f 5-6.7 Di III VC VXD also has great close focusing capabilities. It has a small minimum focusing distance of 23.6 inches at 150mm and only 70.9 inches at the 500mm, which guarantees close-ups of small birds and other tiny objects. Moreover, the maximum magnification ratio at 150mm is exceptionally high at 1:3.1. In all, photographers can shoot powerful telephotomacro images of subjects, including flowers and insects, while maintaining a reasonable shooting distance. I used this lens both out in the wild and in the studio to test its limits. Honestly, I enjoyed it in each situation. I was particularly impressed by Tamron’s trusted VC (Vibration Compensation) system offering multiple modes of image stabilization. There are three modes, with a switch on the side of the lens to flip between them as neededMode 1: Standard Mode 2: Exclusively for Panning Mode 3: Framing Priority, an exciting feature, which enables the lens to help you keep the subject in the frame.



Focal Length

150-500mm

Maximum Aperture

F5-6.7

Angle of View (diagonal)

16°25’-4°57’ (for full-frame mirrorless format)

Optical Construction

25 elements in 16 groups

Minimum Object Distance

0.6m (23.6 in) (WIDE) / 1.8m (70.9 in) (TELE)

Maximum Magnification Ratio

1:3.1 (WIDE) / 1:3.7 (TELE)

Filter Size

φ 82mm

Maximum Diameter

φ 93mm

Length*

209.6mm (8.3 in)

Weight

1,725g (60.8 oz) (without tripod mount included) / tripod mount 155g (5.5 oz)

Aperture Blades

7 (circular diaphragm)**

Minimum Aperture

F22-32

Standard Accessories

Round-shaped hood, Lens caps, Tripod mount

Compatible Mounts

Sony E-mount

* Length is the distance from the front tip of the lens to the lens mount face. ** The circular diaphragm stays almost perfectly circular up to two stops down from maximum aperture.

Conclusion Tamron’s new 150-500mm f/5-6.7 Di III VC VXD is an excellent lens that is truly enjoyable to use. With this one Tamron has done a great job balancing performance and price! This awesome lens is designed and constructed with a strong emphasis on compact size and usability without compromising image quality, so users can enjoy exceptionally high resolving power across the entire image. There are hardly any Cons but if I have to pick one, I would say that it could have had a wider aperture but considering the price and image quality it can produce I can easily say that 150-500mm f/5-6.7 Di III VC VXD is a show stopper! Go for it if you are quality conscious and enjoy shooting on the move.


TAMRON 11-20mm f2.8 Di III-A RXD Review by IDRIS AHMED When it comes to providing a wide range to modern content creators, Tamron has always initiated dynamic lenses be it for traditional photography, videography or vlogging! And the new 11-20mm adorns that legacy!

Tamron’s 11-20mm F2.8 Di III-A RXD Lens is fantastic in every sense, it is compact and lightweight, it has a fast-aperture and it is all weather ultra wide zoom. This versatile lens is an impeccable companion for Sony E-mount APS-Cformat mirrorless cameras! While shooting at The Residency in Lucknow I

came across a beautiful old mosque peeping through the thick foliage and I felt it was a perfect setting to test a lens as lighting conditions were challenging. To my surprise 11-20mm surpassed my expectations and had minimal chromatic aberration and color fringing considering the fact that there was a huge range of light and shade in the picture.



I personally enjoyed its brilliant edge-to-edge optical performance which is quite evident in the image of Ashrafi Mosque at Imambara. Its high optical quality is attributed to its basic construction, which includes 12 elements in 10 groups along with extra low dispersion elements and two glass-molded aspherical elements to produce a highly corrected image with reduced chromatic aberrations and color fringing. It also features Tamron’s trademark ‘Broad-Band AntiReflection Generation 2’ coating that overpowers ghosting and drastically reduces the lens flare. This lens also features the world’s first f 2.8 maximum aperture (for Sony E-mount APS-C mirrorless in this category) and because of its weight and size it is a perfect partner for travel photography, landscape, astrophotography and architectural shooting.


The 11-20mm has bright f2.8 constant maximum aperture, which supplements this range and affords increased control over depth of field along with enhanced low-light performance. A seven-blade diaphragm is configured to retain a smooth, circular-shaped aperture opening, which produces a smooth-edged bokeh.

Focal Length

11-20mm

Maximum Aperture

F2.8

Angle of View (diagonal)

105°20’-71°35’ (for APS-C frame mirrorless format)

Optical Construction

12 elements in 10 groups

Minimum Object Distance

0.15m (5.9 in) (WIDE) / 0.24m (9.4 in) (TELE)

Maximum Magnification Ratio

1:4 (WIDE) / 1:7.6 (TELE)

Filter Size

φ 67mm

Maximum Diameter

φ 73mm

Length*

86.2mm (3.4 in)

Weight

335g (11.8 oz)

Aperture Blades

7 (circular diaphragm)**

Minimum Aperture

F/16

Standard Accessories

Flower-shaped hood, Lens caps

Compatible Mounts

Sony E-mount

* Length is the distance from the front tip of the lens to the lens mount face. ** The circular diaphragm stays almost perfectly circular up to two stops down from maximum aperture.

Conclusion The Tamron 11-20mm F/2.8 Di III-A RXD lens fills a notable gap in Sony’s APS-C collection and it comes as a boon for an APS-C camera user! Lens is designed light and compact to compliment lighter camera bodies. The focal length and constant f2.8 aperture is a welcomed addition to the growing E Mount lens options on the market, giving photographers and content creators a viable and affordable option without compromising a bit on image quality.



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