Thursday, August 31, 2006

Kodak overhauls inkjet paper line-up

Kodak has revealed changes to its entire line of consumer inkjet papers. By incorporating porous media technology and streamlining the product portfolio, Kodak hopes to improve the usability of the paper and the overall consumer experience.
A new 'feast-absorbing' porous surface has been added to the manufacturer's papers, to compliment recent advancements in inkjet technology. A quicker-drying surface also claims to reduce damaging smudges and sticking.
To simplify the buying process for consumers and increase on-shelf efficiency for retailers, Kodak has streamlined its portfolio of inkjet papers. Three distinct levels of quality, Kodak Ultra Premium Photo Paper, Kodak Premium Photo Paper and Kodak Photo Paper, will be offered and each labelled with a gold (best), silver (better), bronze (good) colour scheme to differentiate the products. Each paper will be available in a glossy or non-glossy finish and will be packaged in three different sheet count options.

Kodak. com

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

A flood of empathy

By Scott Timberg, LA Times Staff Writer

CHRIS JORDAN, the Seattle photographer who made his name with dense images of consumer society's debris, headed to New Orleans 10 weeks after Hurricane Katrina hit, out of both curiosity and what he calls "my feeling of personal responsibility." Even as just one of the 6 billion or so who've driven recent climate change, he couldn't shake feelings of guilt. "Three hundred thousand people in my own country losing their homes and personal belongings," he says. "It's like global warming came home to our own family."

What Jordan found in and around New Orleans and what he's captured in his first book, "In Katrina's Wake: Portraits of Loss From an Unnatural Disaster," was "the most shocking landscape I've seen in my life. It took me a while to be able to connect with my own feeling of loss. It's like the experience of being in a family where someone dies of a drug overdose: First it's about them. Then, when the shock wears off, everyone realizes, 'We've all lost something.' "


Chris Jordan's website

Tuesday, August 29, 2006


An essay by JASON DePARLE @ NY Times

I spent the Christmas of 1984 in the St. Thomas housing project, a parcel of low-rise New Orleans blight tucked beside the Mississippi River. It was a glorious day. Neighbors sat on stoops with their stereos loud, swapping plates of corn bread and shrimp-stuffed squash. Kids — happy kids — played everywhere, with toys that looked especially new in barren courtyards. Big Wheels, bikes, robots and dolls — they had been liberated from layaway with dollars squeezed from welfare and menial jobs. One mother let her phone service lapse to buy a $100 set of superheroes that her son could not bring himself to like. She laughed and drank a beer. My guide was a teenage tenant, Thomasina Crockett, whose faith in her future had survived the projects for 15 years. “I don’t think God said, ‘Your Mama went out and got pregnant so you have to live in the project,”’ she said. “You can bounce back.”


Photos by Brenda Ann Kenneally

Monday, August 28, 2006

9/11: the aftermath

Peter Conrad @ The Guardian

Joel Meyerowitz's early photographs were poetic meditations on the sky and the omens that glimmer in it - a twitching nerve of summer lightning that snakes through the blue evening air on Cape Cod; the arch that spans St Louis like a metal rainbow, opening a gateway for Western explorers; the reassuring totem pole of the Empire State Building, with the sun gilding a spire that was designed as an anchorage for airships. Then, on 11 September five years ago, the sky fell in. A few days after the World Trade Centre collapsed, Meyerowitz wangled a pass to the site. He spent the next nine months photographing a sulphurous underworld in which the sky was a remote, mocking memory.


View Images

In Portraits by Others, a Look That Caught Avedon’s Eye

RICHARD AVEDON set the standard for portraiture and fashion photography in the second half of the 20th century, so it is no surprise that his work is sought by serious collectors. But far less well known than his soigné magazine images is that when he died in 2004 he had amassed a significant photography collection of his own.

“From the time he was 10 and the owner of a box camera,” Truman Capote wrote about Avedon in “Observations,” a book they collaborated on in 1959, “the walls of his room were ceiling to floor papered with pictures torn from magazines, photographs by Munkacsi and Steichen and Man Ray.”

If those tear sheets suggested what Avedon’s own pictures would become, the photographs he collected informed his later career.


Friday, August 25, 2006

Walker Evans. Or Is It?


A PHOTOGRAPHER snaps a picture. If it’s a camera with film, a negative is made; if it’s a digital camera, a file is produced. A printer, in a dark room using chemicals, or at a computer screen, can tinker with the image, crop it, enlarge it, make it lighter or darker, highlight one part or obscure another.

In other words, the image produced by the camera, whether it’s a negative or a digital file, is only the matrix for the work of art. It is not the work itself, although if the photographer is a journalist, any hanky-panky in the printing process comes at the potential cost of the picture’s integrity. Digital technology has not introduced manipulation into this universe; it has only multiplied the opportunities for mischief.

I dawdle over this familiar ground because the digitally produced prints of classic Walker Evans photographs, now at the UBS Art Gallery, are so seductive and luxurious — velvety, full of rich detail, poster-size in a few cases and generally cinematic — that they raise some basic issues about the nature of photography.

For starters they suggest a simple question, whether luxury and richness are apt qualities for pictures of Depression-era tenant farmers in the American South. These are, I must say, almost uncomfortably beautiful. In “Let Us Now Praise Famous Men,” where Evans first published many of these photographs in 1941, James Agee, his collaborator, wrote that the book might best have been issued on newsprint to suit the simple and honest character of its subjects. Photography compromises its own value, Agee thought, when it becomes pretentious.


Thursday, August 24, 2006

Booksmart Studio’s announces their fine art metal series

Booksmart Studio has announced a line-up of fine art metal that are coated for inkjet printing with most printers. The line-up of metals includes aluminum-brushed, matte, & satin along with Satin Gold. The thickness of these metals varies from .012 & .016, which allows you to put them directly through your Canon, Epson, or HP printers with a straight pass through. Printing images on these metals give an appearance of being backlite and the image quality mimics that of Ilfochrome with the Aluminum Satin finish.

Booksmart Blog

The Canon 400D

Canon has released info on the new 400D model. I could not find anything on the Canon USA site, but Canon Australia has posted this product page and this introduction page,

"Replacing Australia’s number one-selling D-SLR, the EOS 350D, the new model includes a Canon-developed 10.1 megapixel CMOS image sensor that delivers stunning, professional quality photographs. Super-fast image processing, thanks to Canon’s proprietary DiG!C II processor, ensures the camera is capable of capturing three frames per second (fps) for a burst of up to 27 consecutive frames."

Canon Australia

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

PhotoRec digital picture recovery

PhotoRec is file data recovery software designed to recover lost pictures (Photo Recovery) from digital camera memory and lost files including video, documents and archives from Hard Disks and CDRom. PhotoRec ignores the filesystem and goes after the underlying data, so it'll work even if your media's filesystem is severely damaged or formatted. PhotoRec is safe to use, it will never attempt to write to the drive or memory support you are about to recover from. Recovered files are instead written in the directory from where you are running the PhotoRec program.
PhotoRec is free, this open source multi-platform application is distributed under GNU Public License. PhotoRec is a companion program to TestDisk, an app for recovering lost partitions on a wide variety of filesystems and making non-bootable disks bootable again.

PhotoRec site

Refilled Ink Cartridges Fade Rapidly

LONDON, UK, August 23, 2006 - A new study at the independent testing organisation Wilhelm Imaging Research, Inc (WIR) shows that photos printed with refilled cartridges can fade significantly in less than two months, while prints made with original HP inks and photo papers last far longer. Photos printed using original HP inkjet print cartridges on HP media1 had the highest WIR Display Permanence Rating of all inks tested - 73 years. This means that under the standard conditions of the WIR tests it would take 73 years before noticeable fading would occur.2 By contrast, refilled inkjet print cartridges had among the lowest WIR Display Permanence Ratings ever measured in the WIR lab.


Tuesday, August 22, 2006

You're nicked

The Guardian

Mugshots were invented in Britain in the 1840s as a weapon against crime, but they were taken up most enthusiastically in the United States, where the compulsory police portrait is almost a rite of passage. Giacomo Papi presents villains, stars and victims who have faced the lens


Monday, August 21, 2006

Artificial muscles light up TVs

By Jonathan Fildes
Science and technology reporter, BBC News

Arrays of thousands of tiny "super prisms" controlled by robotic muscles could bring real colour to TV screens for the first time, scientists say.

The devices, known as electrically tunable diffraction gratings, have been built by researchers in Switzerland.

They manipulate light to reproduce the full spectrum of colours on screen, impossible using existing technology.

The team say the devices could also be used to make computer displays with the same resolution as high-end LCDs.

"Today's displays can only reproduce a limited range of colours," said Manuel Aschwanden of the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich, and one of the team behind the work.

"The main advantage of this technology is that it can display all colours."


Friday, August 18, 2006

On Sontag: Essayist as Metaphor and Muse

By HOLLAND COTTER @ New York Times

HOW to honor the memory of a multifarious figure like Susan Sontag? The Metropolitan Museum’s solution — a small, grave, beautiful photography show — is an apt one, though some people will grumble that Sontag had tributes enough in her time, and doesn’t need, or deserve, any more.

The same people were saying not-nice things about this writer long before her death in 2004 at 71, about how she was a prima donna and a holier-than-thou moral scold, a limousine liberal turned cultural conservative; a snob; an opportunist; a serial self-contradicter.

I read her first collection of essays, “Against Interpretation,” the year it came out, in 1966, when I was in high school in rural New England. For me it was like an alarm clock that wouldn’t shut off. I was familiar with only a few of the subjects she was writing about. But I instantly wanted to know everything about all of them, and about everything else she was interested in.


Thursday, August 17, 2006

Adnan Hajj photo manipulation

I missed this one in my return from Europe, however it is an interesting piece and really tries to define the border between carefully enhanced photojournalism and photo manipulation. Hajj's manipulation was so bad that it was easily spotted. BBC Newsnight picked up on the story with this broadcast.Reuters has responded by withdrawing all 920 photographs by the freelancer from it's database and issued the following statement. Photomanipulation is nothing new and has been around for a long time in tabloids, but has been carefully monitored in respectable jounalism. It is a fine line between enhancement and manipulation and a delicate balance.

Wednesday, August 16, 2006


14th August 2006

Having long established its reputation for the production of market-leading black-and-white photographic paper, ILFORD Photo has now taken the whole genre onto a new level of archival and presentational excellence with the fusion of modern digital technology and true silver gelatine printing.

ILFORD Photo has announced the addition of a new paper to its range of specialist black-and-white photo products, which not only represents a major step forward in the production of high quality images, but also utilises the latest advances in digital processing.

Called ILFORD GALERIE FB DIGITAL, this 315gsm fibre base baryta paper has been created for printing with digital laser printers, and is compatible with digital printers such as the Durst Lambda and Océ Lightjet models.
This is the only paper in the world which utilises ILFORD Photo’s renowned fibre base baryta material, made famous by such products as Ilfobrom Galerie FB and Multigrade IV FB papers, with the ability to be exposed in digital laser printers (Lightjet and Lambda) writing directly from digital files.

Read more at:
ILford press room

Fastest Mac ever!

Mac Pro is here!!

"Running at speeds up to 3GHz, Mac Pro not only completes the Mac transition to Intel processors but delivers advanced performance, workstation graphics, and up to 4.9 million possible configurations.
Dual-Core Intel Xeon Processor
Ushering in a new era of outstanding performance, Mac Pro introduces the 64-bit Dual-Core Intel Xeon “Woodcrest” processor to the Mac lineup. A state-of-the-art processor, it makes Mac Pro one of the fastest desktop computers on the planet. From day one.
Quad Core. Up to 3GHz.
Every Mac Pro in the lineup features two of the newest Dual-Core Intel Xeon processors. Two dual-cores. One powerful quad workstation. And you get to decide how fast it flies: 2GHz, 2.66GHz, or 3GHz. And at 3GHz, the Mac Pro runs up to 2x faster than the Power Mac G5 Quad.(1)"

I must start saving my pennies again....

Apple Site

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Back from Vacation

Well, I made it back, but what an ordeal. I awoke Thursday morning to Sky News broadcasting the "failed terror plot" details from Heathrow and wondered if my flight back on Friday was a no go. I walked down to the nearest internet point and went to The flight was still scheduled to leave on time tommorrow at 1:00 pm. Got up at 7:30am and got on the tube, then Heatrow Express, the airport was thick with travelers. My primary concern was my camera. I inquired with a BAA official as to whether I could hand the camera over to a steward or someone for the flight, unfortunately, no. Not having anticipated any of this I came across with a soft sided bag, and now I had to send the camera in this bag into the hold of the plane. The bag was already stuffed with clothing and goodies from Italy. I pulled some clothing out and transferred it to the shoulder pack stuffed with wine, wrapped the camera up in clothes and placed in in the center of the bag and prayed for the best, there was no other option. Much to my surprize everything came through fine, but I was racked with nerves the whole flight.

And life goes on....