Industry News

Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 5

Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 5 is available for download

Adobe has just announced that the new version of its image editing software, Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 5, is now available for download from the Adobe website.
Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 5
Adobe is offering Lightroom 5 for download to their Creative Cloud subscribers or as a standalone software download from the Adobe website with an upgrade price of $99 or $186 for new customers.
Standalone versions will also be sold through select retailers such as Harvey Norman and Officeworks.
Adobe’s Lightroom makes is easier to fix imperfections in images and produce professional documents that combine multimedia elements
The company says that the latest version of Lightroom adds new image editing tools that enable the user to “create better images faster”.
According to the press release, these new features include:
  • The Advanced Healing Brush – Enables customers to fix irregularly shaped imperfections such as dust spots, splotches, and other distractions with the precision and flexibility of a fine brush.
  • The Upright tool – Analyses each image to automatically straighten objects such as buildings and level horizons.
  • Radial Gradients – Offer customers the control to make photo subjects stand out by applying off-center and multiple vignettes in a single image.
  • Extended sharing and publishing capabilities – New video slideshows enable customers to combine still images, video clips and music in a creative HD slideshow that can be viewed on almost any device.
  • Updates to the Book module – Brings the ability to create, personalize and print elegant photo books from a variety of tailored, easy-to-use templates, as well as create customer-specific templates.
  • Smart Previews – Enables photographers to make edits to their images offline, without bringing their entire library of original files with them. Edits and metadata changes to Smart Preview files are automatically applied to the original images when they are reconnected.
So, what is the difference between Photoshop and Lightroom?
Lightroom shares some similar features to Photoshop and some professional photographers describe Lightroom as “good enough” for the majority of the day-to-day editing tasks, however it does lack some of the more advanced editing tools that seasoned Photoshop users would be used to.
Where Lightroom shines over Photoshop is the extensive image management capabilities that help professionals keep large volumes of images organised in one place.
Lightroom also possess a simpler user interface than Photoshop, so if you are a newcomer to the world of image editing software, Lightroom might be a good place to start.
It’s also worth noting that if you’re planning on buying the standalone version, Lightroom is significantly cheaper than Photoshop.
no photo staff

For the Chicago Sun Times Anyone With An iPhone Is A Professional Photographer

It is no surprise that Americans don’t turn to the newspaper to get informed anymore. It started in the 1960’s with network news coming into your home every evening. The next hit to the daily paper came from the internet, and now most people get their information from smart phone and tablet apps. Most papers in the U.S. are on borrowed time.

Take the Chicago Sun-Times. The paper, once a thriving big city operation, has just fired its whole photography staff. The paper is going to go with pictures “from the field” meaning that it will immediately train reporters on “iPhone photography basics” and reporters will now be responsible for taking pictures for their own stories.

no photo staff

Comedic mock-up of what the Chicago Sun-Times front cover could
look like with no photographers employed to add pictures.
(Image by Ian Arsenault.)

The bigger issue here is that a major U.S. metropolitan paper is telling the professional photographers that it fired that their job could be done by someone without experience as long as they have an Apple iPhone to capture an image. Just giving someone an iPhone doesn’t make them a professional photographer although Apple feeds on that image as seen with with its latest camera-centric ad.

The sad story here is that photography as a profession is in real trouble. This decision by the Sun-Times is just one of a string of many across the country proving that photography and photographers are undervalued. And while the bulk of the responsibility here lies with the Sun-Times owners and managers – professional photographers need to take note. If you aren’t proving yourself valuable every single hour of every single day, you may be declared fungible by your bosses.

The newspaper released a statement suggesting the move reflected the increasing importance of video in news reporting:

“The Sun-Times business is changing rapidly and our audiences are consistently seeking more video content with their news. We have made great progress in meeting this demand and are focused on bolstering our reporting capabilities with video and other multimedia elements. The Chicago Sun-Times continues to evolve with our digitally savvy customers, and as a result, we have had to restructure the way we manage multimedia, including photography, across the network.”

John White, the Chicago Sun-Times’ Pulitzer Prize winning photojournalist, who was among the many who lost their jobs on Thursday, said in an interview with Kenneth Irby this weekend that he could never imagine that he and all his colleagues would have their careers ended as abruptly as they were.

White said: “It was as if they pushed a button and deleted a whole culture of photojournalism.” He also said: “Humanity is being robbed by people with money on their minds.”

But there is another side on this story here. The paper was negotiating with the photographers’ union and now that they canned the whole bunch, the paper could decide to hire back some of the photographers on a part time basis without healthcare or other benefits and in essence, breaking the union.

We do this to ourselves. We want the cheapest everything we can buy. We’ll take any abuse to save a buck. We’ll accept news coverage in Chicago that is devoid of the powerful, moving, photo stories that only a photojournalist can tell. We’re okay with mediocre. How do I know that? These things wouldn’t be happening if we weren’t.

When you hear me take a stand against photographers who undermine the profession by working for slave wages, or when I call out a guy who thinks he’s a pro because he bought a Canon EOS 5D Mark III, or when I say the CEO of Yahoo she’s a butt-head for saying there are no more professional photographers, you now know why I am doing these things. It’s because if I don’t stand up for my profession I can’t expect anyone else to.

Ask yourself what images you have burned in your memory from the past decade…  and then ask yourself if you can name one single “multimedia piece” by name that you recently saw on a newspaper’s website…  you probably can’t (although there are some amazing ones that have been produced.)

And that’s the point:  photography is just as important today if not more than it ever has been.  Not a time to cut yourself at the knees as an organization, let alone all the way to the marrow.  If you do:  you’re insuring your irrelevance and giving loyal readers who are holding on yet another reason to stop subscribing.

How many years does the newspaper industry have until we bury it completely?

graphene camera senso

New Graphene Camera Sensor Better Performer in Low-light Photos

Graphene is the key to a new camera sensor developed at the Nanyang Technological University (NTU), Singapore, that is 1000 times more sensitive to light than traditional models.

graphene camera sensor

Image Credit: Nanyang Technological University

Researchers at NTU have announced a sensor made from graphene that can detect broad spectrum light. Compared to traditional CMOS or CCD sensors, the graphene model “traps” light-generated electron particles and can hold on to them for a lot longer, as reported byScience Daily.

By being able to hold on to the electric signals for a longer period of time than regular sensors, the graphene unit can produce clearer photos — particularly in low light situations. The research was led by Assistant Professor Wang Qijie who made the sensor from a pure sheet of graphene, known for its high electrical conductivity.

Graphene is a material that is already set to be used in consumer tech applications such as flexible OLED screens and has long been touted as the replacement for indium tin oxide (ITO). Earlier this year, Fujifilm announced that it was working on touchscreens based on silver halide, which is far more flexible than the brittle ITO currently used in many screens.

Initial applications for the sensor are thought to be for devices like surveillance cameras and satellites rather than the humble point-and-shoot, at least initially. However, the researchers at NTU said that once the sensor reaches mass production, it will be up to five times cheaper than CMOS or CCD sensors.

“While designing this sensor, we have kept current manufacturing practices in mind,” said Assistant Professor Wang. “This means the industry can in principle continue producing camera sensors using the CMOS process, which is the prevailing technology used by the majority of factories in the electronics industry. Therefore, manufacturers can easily replace the current base material of photo sensors with our new nano-structured graphene material.”

(via CNET)

Eisenstaedt’s “Kiss in Times Square”

Eisenstaedt’s “Kiss in Times Square” print and camera Leica that shot it make big bucks at auction

Known as “Kiss in Times Square”, it’s a photo that came to symbolize the end of World War II and one that’s particularly touching for those remembering fallen soldiers as part of Memorial Day ceremonies today.

A signed print of Alfred Eisenstaedt’s iconic 1945 V-J Day celebration shot and the Leica camera that captured it both sold at auction on Friday for a combined total of nearly $180,000.
Eisenstaedt’s “Kiss in Times Square”
The signed Eisenstaedt print fetched 24,000 Euros (~US$31,000) while Eisenstaedt’s camera, a Leica IIIa rangefinder, sold for 114,000 Euros (~US$147,400) at the 23rd WestLicht Photographica Auction in Vienna, Austria on May 24th.

Eisenstaedt continued to use the same Leica IIIa for 50 years after he captured his famous Times Square photo, including a final portrait session with President Bill Clinton and his family, two years before the photographer died.

eisentaedt's-leicaEisenstaedt’s camera, however wasn’t the most expensive sale of the WestLicht auction. That honor went to an original Leitz gold-plated Leica “Luxus” camera covered in brown lizard leather with two gold-plated lenses, which sold for 528,000 Euros (~US$682,366). The second biggest sale was a Leica M3 prototype, which sold for 432,000 Euros (~US$558,302). Meanwhile, a prototype Noctilux 1.2/50mm chrome lens sold for 144,000 Euros (~US$186,100).

Below is a screenshot of some of the most expensive cameras from WestLicht’s auction. Sure makes it look your pro Canon or Nikon like cheap toys, don’t they?

WestLicht auction results

(WestLicht results via Leica Rumors)

Manipulated photography

Faking It Exhibition: Manipulated Photography before Photoshop

In our digital communication age, everyone knows Photoshop. Even the Oxford and Mirriam-Webster dictionaries have come to define Photoshop as a verb:

transitive verb, often capitalized\?f?-(?)t?-?shäp\
Definition of PHOTOSHOP
: to alter (a digital image) with Photoshop software or other image-editing software especially in a way that distorts reality (as for deliberately deceptive purposes)

In this age digital wonderment we believe that photo manipulation began with Photoshop. However, this is not the case at all. Ever since the inception of photography in 1839, artists have used the public’s belief that photographs are “real” and always tell the truth.

At the National Gallery of Art in Washington, DC there has been an exhibition called,Faking It: Manipulated Photography before Photoshop. This exhibition started in New York City at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, and will end at the Museum of Fine Arts in Houston, Texas. In Faking It, the curator, Mia Fineman, Assistant Curator in the Department of Photographs at the Met, has divided the exhibit into seven parts that start in the 1840’s up through the late 20th century.

Manipulated photography

In the first section, Picture Perfect, we witness how photography was manipulated because of its technical limitations. For example, all photographic processes were mono-chrome or black & white. So to add tan element of realism, daguerreotype plates and photographic prints were hand colored. Also, because of the exposure limitations due to the plates light sensitivity of those early times, photographic artists would make muptiple exposures on several plates and then with masking in the darkroom, blend all of these exposures together. A technique much like the modern equvilant of HDR (High Dynamic Range).

In another section, Artifice in the Name of Art , photographers begin to use this ability to manipulate photographs with their psychological power of “realism and truth” to tell unique or sereal stories. Other sections also show how photographs manipulated to distort the “truth” for purposes of policital propaganda.

For me, the most exciting element of this exhibition was seeing the actual prints of so many images I’ve only known from images in books. Seeing the actual print of Henry Peach Robinson’s, Fading Away was a real joy. Also learning that Edward Steichen‘s portrait of Rodin, was actually a composite was fascinating. Even Mathew Brady got into the act with his group portrait of Sherman and his Officers. Now, we know the artist Man Ray manipulated images, but so did the documentary photographer Lewis Hines. In the mid 20th century you may be aware of Duane MichalsJerry Uelsmann creating dream-like images, but portrait photographer Richard Avedon created interpretive photographs for Vogue.

“Faking It: Manipulated Photography before Photoshop” closes at the National Gallery of Art in Washington, DC this weekend, May 5th, 2013. If you can make a moment to visit, check it out. If you miss it, check out the exhibions web site at both the NGA and the Met Museum of Art. You can also get the catalog on

Source: Jarvis Grant,


Dove Canada Uses Photoshop Trojan Horse to Shame Potential Body-Shamers

In the latest round of Dove’s long-running “Real Beauty” campaign, the company leaves a Photoshop Action where photography creatives might find it, in order to sabotage the unrealistic beauty standards they may be supporting.

Battles can’t always be fought like a football game, with the offense and defense meeting each other head-on. Sometimes it’s most advantageous to infiltrate the enemy for a sneak attack–which is exactly what Dove is doing in its ongoing war against unrealistically svelte depictions of women in advertising.

The decade-running “Real Beauty” campaign, which won a Grand Prix at Cannes in 2007, continues its assault on Photoshop by fighting fire with fire. Created by Ogilvy Toronto, Dove Canada’s latest endeavor is a sneaky way to hit the perpetrators of such ads right at the source–their computers.

The team at Ogilvy created the Photoshop action “Beautify”, a downloadable file that makes a change with a single click, in this case aimed at photography creatives who might be shaving the curves off of a not-even-curvy model right this very second. The company hopes to spread “Beautify” by leaving it on sites like Reddit which art directors and the like are known to frequent–presenting it as an aid for retouching.
At first blush, it appears that “Beautify” adds a healthy-looking skin glow effect to the photo. What it actually does, however, is revert photoshopped images back to their original state. Although it occurs to me that some innocent Photoshoppers (though, are any of them truly innocent?) might get caught in the crosshairs of this sneak attack, a Photoshop action can be easily undone, and so any casualties will only be mildly inconvenienced–and probably not ashamed of their bodies.

By Joe Berkowitz on Fast Company’s Co.Create

world longest photographic negative

The longest photographic negative in the world was created in Argentina

The longest photographic negative in the world measures an astounding 39.54 m (129 ft 8.69 in) in length and was created by Esteban Pastorino Diaz using a very well designed custom-built panoramic slit camera on 13 June 2010.

Having a background in engineering, Pastorino has been building his own cameras since the late 1990’s. For this particular endeavor, Pastorino constructed a 360 degree rotating camera made of high impact black plastic and an old pentax film camera that he retrofitted and mounted to his car.

custom-built panoramic slit camera

The negative is a panorama of major streets in Buenos Aires, Argentina, captured by the slit camera while mounted on the roof of a moving car.

world longest photographic negative

For his record shattering project, Pastorino plotted a route through Buenos Aires, from Moreno to 983, continuing through 9th Ave around the Obelisk and past President Roque Saenz Peña Avenue. Then towards Plaza de Mayo, continuing to Hipolito Yrigoyen Avenue La Rabida and ending on Avenida Leandro N. Alem behind the Casa Rosada. The route took 14 minutes and 45 seconds, the camera rotated 97 and a half times on its axis throughout the route.

Below  is a video where you can see a big part of that ‘never ending’ negative (imagine trying to process this!).

Since submitting for the Guinness World Record, Pastorino has already broken his previous achievement. In 2011, Pastorino photographed the New York Marathon, exposing over 1000 feet of film.