LA Times, Altered Oceans
The Los Angeles Times is on day 2 of publishing Altered Oceans, a five-part series on the crisis in the seas, by Kenneth R. Weiss and Usha Lee McFarling, with photography and video by Rick Loomis. It features some fantastic (and effective) conservation photography, and is definitely worth taking a look at. Unfortunately, the site is 100% Flash, and those of you on slow connections will have to wait for long load times.
Canon announces XH G1 and XH A1 HDV Camcorders
Canon has announced its XH G1 ($6800) and XH A1 ($4700) HDV Camcorders, both equipped with fixed, image-stabilized, 20x optical zoom lenses, 2.8-inch LCD viewscreens, and three 1/3-inch CCD imagers. Shipping date is October 2. Our video guy Drew Wong writes:
... they look very good, although actual specs (lux rating etc) are skimpy. I checked the japanese website and found a lot more specs than the US one (which is usually the case).
Canon historically have had a slightly different look to their, more saturated and less sharpened/contrasty compared to Sony. These cameras look like direct competitors to the FX/Z1 from Sony. With direct HD SDI out, slightly higher res VF and LCD plus even more picture adjustments, Canon is taking aim at the FX1. The Z1 still has dual NTSC/PAL advantage. But 20X zoom, HD SDI, Genlock etc are going to be big sells for many shooters.
HOWEVER, the problem for the u/w shooter is the availability of housings. Even with Lanc controls, housings for Canon have been a very short list, esp on the electronic housing segment. Canons tend to have a lot more buttons on the outside for controls which may make housing manufacturers cringe but helluva more useable to the shooter. I guess we’ll see in Oct.
Divester’s first photo contest
Our friends at Divester are sponsoring their first-ever underwater photo contest. The rules are simple:
* The photo has to be your photo.
* The photo has to have been taken underwater.
If you are one of the ten winners, you will get a free copy of Shaun and Beth Tierney’s dive guide called Diving the World. Good luck, everyone!
OzTEK ‘07 Speaker Update
Widely hailed as one of the world’s leading forums for divers, the OZTeK’07 Diving Technologies Conference & Exhibition will feature one of the most distinguished gatherings of international diving authorities ever seen in Australia.
To be staged at the Australian Technology Park in Sydney, Australia over the weekend of the 17th and 18th March 2007, the speakers and presenters will represent every field of diving expertise. Confirmed speakers include John Chatterton, Leigh Bishop, Peter Buzzacott, Kevin Gurr, Jarrod Jablonski, Dr. Simon Mitchell, Cedrec Verdier, and more. Full details at the FiNS Blog...
Expodisc used for underwater white balance
Interview with Eric Cheng on Divefilm.com
“What I wanted to do was get some of his thoughts on making the transition from underwater still photography to video, what skills were transferable, what helped, what new skills he needed to acquire in the process. My thinking was that because it was so close in time to his first dives doing video, I could get more of a sense of his early impressions. And, of course, I was hoping he’d let me use some of his cool images and video to illustrate the interview, and this he very graciously agreed to do.”
Rick Sammon: Travel and Nature Photography
Rick Sammon’s new book, Rick Sammon’s Travel and Nature Photography, is one of the best books on travel and nature photography I’ve ever read. Sammon begins with a series of “jumpstarts” that outline the basics of digital photography, travel, and philosophy, and the rest of the book is comprised of individual lessons on topics including photographing people, landscapes, wildlife, captive animals, seascapes, cities, indoor scenes, close-ups, and more. What I like most is that Sammon uses effective photographs to illustrate each of his points. He doesn’t just write, “use a reflector” or “use a polarizer” or “move closer”. Instead, he uses images to illustrate plainly the effect it will have on the final image. Also, the images are stunning; I often found myself staring at them instead of reading the text on the page.
BP Kongsberg Underwater Image Competition
The winners of the BP Kongsberg Underwater Image Competition were announced last week. This was rather an unusual underwater photography competition because one of the main rules was that images had to be taken deeper than 200m (660ft). So most are taken by ROVs - and are nothing like any you have seen before. There is also an interesting category for microscopic and laboratory shots of weird creatures from the depths - and you thought Lembeh had cornered the market for oddballs. Wetpixel’s Dr Alex Mustard was the chairman of the judging pannel for this unique competition. The photo, right, is a deepwater octopus taken by Dr David Shale.
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