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How graphic is too graphic?

March 10, 2010 by News, Opinion

Arielle Emmett has written a sombre and thought-provoking piece for the American Journalism Review, discussing the role and impact of graphic photojournalism in the wake of the recent Haitian earthquake.

With natural disaster and war comes violent and bloody death; in some cases on such a scale that it’s hard to take in.

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It’s 2010 and we may not have flying cars but…

March 8, 2010 by Gear, News, Opinion

Screen Grab of RV Helicopter Popular Mechanics September 1977Those of us who came of age during the 60’s, 70s and 80’s were promised flying cars, robot help and consumer space travel. I at least thought that I would be able to take my family on a quick camping trip in my helicopter RV with pontoons. We may not have made the strides necessary for these scifi travel options but camera technology is starting to blow my mind. A couple of years ago at Photo Plus Expo I saw a demo of “smile recognition” software on a point and shoot. It fired the shutter when a smile or group of smiles was detected. That kind of facial recognition capability on a point and shoot camera definitely seemed futuristic. The migration to DSLRs shooting video didn’t seem as radical since that capability has been available on consumer cameras for a while and a lot of the other technology developments have seemed to be standard upgrade paths from current technology.

The feature set on the new Panasonic G2 also follows a natural evolution but at an accelerated rate that seems to be ahead of what many people would expect in a pro-sumer level camera today. We’re talking Minority Report type interface for photography.

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Photographer fights in court to protect rights

March 1, 2010 by News, Opinion

Meet Carlos Miller.

Mr Miller is a Miami-based multimedia journalist who has been caught in a dispute with the city’s police for almost two years now.

On February 20th 2007, he took a photo of five police officers. He was standing on a public road at the time. An altercation followed, and Mr Miller ended up on the ground, under arrest, and threatened with a taser.

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CGI that will make your eyes pop out of your head

February 27, 2010 by Opinion, Short Film

Sit yourself down, free up 15 minutes of your time, and drown yourself in The Third and The Seventh, an amazing piece of video from Alex Roman.

It would be an amazing piece of work if it had been produced by traditional means; it’s even more impressive when you learn that almost everything you see here is computer-generated.

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Where are we going from here? Musing about the future of VDSLR hardware

February 26, 2010 by Gear, Opinion

I was talking to Michael Britt on the phone last night and he encouraged me to share my delusional prognostications with you. The whole conversation got started with him suggesting that Canon is going to introduce the 1DS Mk IV with RAW video capabilities and I got off on a rant…

VMock.jpg

I’m not saying that Canon isn’t going to release a RAW 1DS – they might – but I did say that I didn’t think that was going to be the future of hardware. After all, the VDSLR was largely a lucky accident when Canon released the HD-5D. They were completely surprised to see it turned into a tool for shooting theatrical release movies. Nobody was even trying to satisfy the needs of that market until after the camera was released into the wild. Let’s face it, the physical body of a DSLR was specifically optimized for still photography. It just isn’t the ideal form factor for shooting movies and, here’s the important information, cinematographers are not using these cameras because they can also shoot stills!

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Ten Twitter lists worth following

February 23, 2010 by News, Opinion, Tips And Tricks

20100222-twitterlogo.pngThe team over at Photoshelter have compiled a great list of ten Twitter lists photographers should follow.

The lists are varied and cover all manner of useful groups of people – not just those making multimedia, but also those commissioning it studying it, selling it, and consulting about it.

The ten lists are certainly worth looking through, but in my opinion following all of them is probably overkill. Twitter can be a huge timesink if you’re not careful, and adding a bunch of lists to your Twitter account means creating a fresh pile of inboxes you have to keep watching. Which means more time mindless link-clicking, and less time out in the real world taking pictures.

So my advice would be: look at the lists, and click through to the Twitter accounts of the individuals you find on them to see if they are the kind of people you’d like to add as contacts. Twitter means different things to different people, but for me the most useful contacts are the ones with a high signal:noise ratio; the people who don’t Tweet much, but always Tweet something useful when they do.

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