Before I write about my week in Scotland, a brief comment on the iPad. I’m still keen on using it as a photographic tool, and indeed I used it that way while I was in Scotland. However, I do find that the limitations imposed by Apple not only on their Photos app, but also on other developers, are frustrating, so I’m not going to examine it any further until iOS5 is launched, probably in October, when I hope there will be a big change.
I spent a week in Scotland in the first half of September, based at Kyle of Lochalsh and visiting nearby locations, including Skye. The weather is best described as WET – there was no serious photography at all on one day, and on another day we only ventured out in the afternoon, and then it was mostly snapshots – no tripods! This was a photographic workshop organised by Lee Frost and Duncan McEwan, and despite the weather it was very enjoyable – great locations (apart from the pain at Midge Ridge), well organised, and good company. I mainly used the Panasonic GH2 with the excellent 14-140mm lens (not only very versatile, but good image quality as well), with the Pen E-P3 and the Sony A55 also contributing, and on the wet afternoon I was also reduced to taking quite a few photographs with the iPhone 3G! Apart from the 14-140 lens, my favourite was the new Pen 12mm, although that didn’t get much use, and despite my plans, I did not shoot more than a handful of IR images. Since getting back I’ve been putting some of the images on Flickr, my web site (including a YouTube video slideshow), and now I need to put some of them in a Blurb book.
The YouTube video was particularly frustrating to produce, as Final Cut Pro X crashed several times, and I had huge problems with crossfade transitions, as the rendering went wrong after changing the duration of the slide (even if I deleted the transition and then applied it again) – after a lot of wasted time I discovered that I had to delete ALL the rendering of the project and then let it re-render for the transitions to work properly. FCP X is not fit for purpose in its current state – it is not really up to usual beta test quality, and that is aside from the numerous criticisms from real pros about the missing features. It is several weeks since this defective product was released, and there still have not been any updates released to address its many shortcomings. On top of the Vista (my mistake, Lion) release, my confidence in Apple is seriously reduced.