Leatherback Turtles Revisted
During the months of July and August, I and a select group of adventurers from Mexico, Australia, Germany, England, France, Spain, Singapore and the United States visited the nesting beaches of the Pacific Leatherback Sea Turtles (Dermochelys Coriacea), in very remote Papua Barat, Indonesia.
My initial visits and exposure to these “Gentle Giants of the Pacific” was a year previously in a far different manner than these just concluded trips…
Fuji to Announce S5 DSLR on Sept. 25th
According to Nikon camera pundit Thom Hogan, Fujifilm will announce their new S5 DSLR camera on September 25th. The camera is said to be based on the Nikon D200 platform, with a new Fuji SR sensor (high dynamic range). Fuji’s cameras have been lauded for their excellent image quality, however have lost popularity with underwater photographers because of the S3’s “clunky” design and slow performance. Only time will tell if the S5 will reverse the trend.
Adobe releases Camera Raw 3.5, updates DNG Converter
Yesterday, Adobe announced new versions of Camera Raw and DNG Converter. Camera Raw 3.5 supports more than 125 different cameras, and for the first time is also available as a Universal Binary for Intel-based Macintosh computers. The free Adobe DNG Converter, which translates all Photoshop-supported raw photo formats into the universal .DNG file format, gives photographers a single unified file format for archiving raw files.
Red One video camera hearsay
There has been some recent forum activity about the Red One (Oakley founder Jim Jannard’s futuristic new video camera). Many posts are of the “I heard from a friend whose sister told me xxx” variety, but the topic is worth reading simply because the camera looks so cool. If it ends up delivering video accurate to its specifications, RED Digital Cinema is really going to really shake up the professional HD video market.
Although, if someone pointed a housed Red One at me underwater, I’d sort of expect to be blasted out of existence.
Sea & Sea announces new products
Sea & Sea officially announced the release of the YS-110 strobe, a Nikon D80 housing, and a Sony HDR-HC3/DCR-DVD505/HDR-UX1 video housing.
The YS-110 features a land guide number of 22, a 105° x 105° beam angle, Sea & Sea’s DS-TTL, and as much as 320 flashes from NiMH AA batteries, while the new housings feature a depth rating of 200ft (60m) and a built-in leak sensor.
To learn more, check out the Sea & Sea press releases:
PBS Special Tonight - National Marine Sanctuaries
On September 20th and 27th, PBS is airing a feature about National Marine Sanctuaries. Please tune in to your local PBS station at 8 p.m. (check your local listings) to see “America’s Underwater Treasures”. During the two evenings, all 14 sites will be featured. In addition, KQED has officially launched the sanctuary guide portion of their website to coincide with the airing of the program. On the website, you’ll find information on all of the sites in the National Marine Sanctuary System as well as information on the many issues facing these marine protected areas.
Adobe Photoshop CS2’s Bridge and Camera Raw Defaults
Adobe Photoshop CS2 is a staple application in pretty much every modern photographer’s arsenal. Unfortunately, it ships with a crippling RAW conversion default whose fix should be the first thing you do upon its installation.
I frequently see underwater photographers load up Bridge and look at their images with disappointment in their eyes. “Why is the water so ... light? I could have sworn I had underexposed for The Blue!” The fix is simple…
Photography: Is it art or is it reality?
Two weeks ago, Wetpixel member John Bantin started an interesting topic in our forums. “Is it art or is it reality?”:
We learned about Photoshop and started to retouch away all those annoying grolleys that were in the water. Then mooring lines and divers inconveniently placed magically disappeared. With the skills so practised, I am now able to go back to the 500,000 snaps (no exaggeration) I have in filing cabinets and resurrect any that I care to….
However, this does mean that all my pictures are getting stylized (just like everyone else’s). I fear that they no longer represent the truth. I am not talking about exhibition or competition pictures. I am talking about the pictures that go into Diving magazines. Are they misleading in their new-found perfection?
What do you think? Is this new digital art misrepresenting reality? The camera never used to lie!
The thread has since attracted over 80 replies, and is well worth reading, if you are struggling with balancing photography as art and photography as reality.
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