Recent thoughts and news … [UPDATED]

Quite a lot is happening on the camera, and also my photography, scene at present, so here are some first thought – more to follow.

Colour management – being  (NOT) satisfied with how an image I have worked on will appear on the web, and on print, has been a huge problem for me in the past. Spyder 4 just announced … barely a month after I received my Spyder 3!! Frustrating, but I think the Spyder 3 kit I bought, which includes printer/paper calibration, will make life much easier (well, it already has!).

I’m finding the 366 days a year single image very upsetting – I want to ENJOY my photography, and having to go out to shoot an image every day may motivate some people, but I find it a pain in the … posterior. I’m sorry, but I have a life outside photography, and some days the weather, location, health, mood, just don’t motivate me, and if I have to take a photograph I will produce a really rubbish image (like today), but other days I produce several images that *I* like. Please don’t misunderstand me, those who are motivated and capable of shooting a brilliant image every day are to be congratulated, but it’s just not my scene.

The new Fuji camera and lenses are exciting – but not cheap, quite big, and the way the camera responds to the user (the ‘user interface’) has not been reported on yet, and is quite important to me. I date back to the Pentax slogan ‘Just hold a Pentax’, and for me it was so important, though YMMV! From reports so far, I think that Sony NEX cameras fail at present on the  ‘Just hold’ factor, and Fuji haven’t received that message before either. For me, and it’s entirely a personal thing, the Panasonic cameras are the most intuitive to use – maximum control over how the camera performs, and in  the most obvious way for me! If the Panas don’t appeal to YOU, just choose what YOU  like, but I hope you will not feel that you need to tell me that I am wrong in what suits ME – constructive comment welcome though!

Lightroom 4 BETA has now been released – potentially at least as exciting as camera news! There are some good features in the spec, but experience so far is rather disappointing. So, book (Blurb) support and  Soft Proofing, but Apple’s Aperture has offered similar support for a long time (though Apple books, not Blurb). Soft Proofing was potentially (for me) a huge benefit, but so far I cannot find a way of preventing it changing the border/background colour, which makes it almost impossible to judge what soft proofing has done! An existing image that I had  previously round-tripped to Nik Silvereffex 2 as  a TIFF could not be updated for the metadata. An image I had processed in LR 3 seemed to look very different in LR4, and updating it to LR 4 processing made it even more different. Yes, this is a beta, but I’m seriously worried to have had all these issues in the first, 1 hour, session using it! A

As a postscript, I can understand some of the changes to the LR Develop module, but I think there are hints of ‘dumbing-down?’. Personally, and it just the way I have used LR, I’d have preferred to see more ‘power user’ features, but I suppose that would potentially damage the sales of Photoshop!

UPDATE: Just watching the excelling videos by Juieanne Kost on Lightroom 4, which make several things clearer, not least how to change the background colour when soft proofing!

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About Mike Hessey

I'm a BOF (Boring Old Fellow) and MOS (Miserable Old Soul) whose main interests are photography, cycling, walking and computers. Regrettably recent problems with my legs, back and heart have reduced the cycling and walking.
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