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How to Show More with Your Photographs by Thinking Outside the Frame

19 Feb

In its simplest form, a photograph is a representation of a very limited part of space at a very limited point in time. This article is about choosing which tiny bit of reality to represent and how that choice can make a photograph into much more than just a record of time.

01 photography tips thinking outside the frame

The most obvious elements of any photograph are the subject, the foreground, and the background. The light and the time it takes to create the photo are equally essential. In this article, I’ll be focusing on an ingredient which may be less obvious, sometimes even overlooked, but never absent: the frame.

What is the frame?

By frame, I don’t mean a picture frame, but the edges of the photo.

02 photography tips thinking outside the frame

Take a look at the photo above. What’s going on? There’s the subject (a cat) the foreground, a bench, the background (a pink wall) and a branch of some kind. So what does the frame have to do with all this?

The frame of a photograph is what separates the obvious from the inferred. It’s part of why a good photograph means different things to different people because that which is inferred is subjective.

Consider the photograph of the cat again. The cat is about to pounce, which means that there’s something going on outside the frame. Maybe another cat is walking by, or maybe there’s a delicious-looking bird on the ground.

What’s outside the frame is just as important

03 photography tips thinking outside the frame

What is left outside the frame can tell a story of its own or be an essential part of the subject of the photo? By creating tension between the obvious and the inferred you wield a powerful tool to make even better photographs. Every image has a relation to the rest of the world, even though the immediate surroundings aren’t obvious or don’t seem to add anything.

04 photography tips thinking outside the frame

So how do you start thinking outside the frame?

I will show you a few examples so you get the idea.

1 – Make it obvious

The obvious way is to make it clear that there is something outside the frame that isn’t being shown. The easiest way to do this is to capture an interesting gaze or photograph a detail.

05 photography tips thinking outside the frame

In the image above, the groom is not looking at the camera, but towards something more interesting outside the frame. For those who recognize the setting, it may be obvious that he is looking towards the church door, which will soon reveal the bride; for others, the interpretation could be different.

06 photography tips thinking outside the frame

These photos show a part of something larger. The hands suggest a person, and might even reveal something about that person. The spiraling tree creates a looping line that continues outside the frame.

2 – Tie the subject to the setting

The scene inside the frame can be tied to a larger setting without the subject directly or indirectly touching the frame. This can make the subject seem large or small, create an open or claustrophobic feeling, or give the surroundings a sense of continuity.

07 photography tips thinking outside the frame

Take a look at the photo above. By surrounding a tiny subject with a single, strong color, that color almost always feels like it continues on and on. In this picture, does it give you a sense of comfort or claustrophobia?

08 photography tips thinking outside the frame

The idea with the photo above is somewhat similar, but the feeling of it is quite different. Here is a playful animal in its seemingly limitless element, suggesting unlimited enjoyment. Or do you see something quite different?

3 – Use pattern or rhythm

By using a pattern or rhythm in the photo, you can create an effect that allows the viewer to imagine infinity. The idea is the same as in the example above, but the execution and effect are different. Here, the pattern or rhythm itself can be the subject, and it’s that subject that leads the viewer outside the frame.

09 photography tips thinking outside the frame

The pattern of cracked sea ice works like a block of color. But since it’s more interesting than just a single color, it can stand by itself and let the eye wander through the details in the photo and the mind continue beyond.

10 photography tips thinking outside the frame

A seascape like the one in the image above can suggest an infinitely large ocean just by showing an unbroken horizon. The ocean doesn’t only continue into the photo, though, it also continues sideways and beyond the edges of the photo. The rhythm of the clouds emphasizes this illusion.

4 – Reflections

Reflections are also an effective way of suggesting a wider world outside the constraints of the photograph. It’s a more direct way of pointing to the wider context.

11 photography tips thinking outside the frame

Concrete walls can suggest many things, but thanks to the reflection in the window it becomes quite clear that the photo is not taken in a concrete jungle, but in a verdant and sunny place. Reading the expression on the subject’s face becomes quite different thanks to the wider context.

Conclusion

Photography is always about choices, conscious or not. The more photography you do, the more deliberate your choices will become. Being aware of this gives you more control over your creative process. The creative decisions you can make based on those choices is what makes photography art.

How you frame your photographs is just one of the things to keep in mind when you photograph.

Do you pay attention to what you leave out when you take a photo? Do you have any examples or thoughts you’d like to share about how you’ve used the frame and what’s beyond as an element in your photography? I’d love to hear about it and see your photos in the comments below.

The post How to Show More with Your Photographs by Thinking Outside the Frame by Hannele Luhtasela-el Showk appeared first on Digital Photography School.


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More than a speed light: Shooting with the Rotolight Neo 2

18 Feb

Introduction

One Neo 2, lit by another Neo 2.

Artificial lighting falls into two categories: Continuous and strobe. Continuous lighting is a great option for beginning photographers, because you can see your results before tripping the shutter (also, they’re handy for the whole ‘video’ thing). Unfortunately, the continuous lights of yesteryear were very power hungry and put out a ton of heat to get light levels that even approached a small, battery-powered strobe.

The advent of LED lights changes this somewhat, offering users a more convenient means of entry into the world of continuous lighting. But their power output still pales in comparison to even a low-end hotshoe flash. Plus, even basic studio strobes come with modeling lights to help with setup, and many on-camera flashes now have LED lights for video shooting in dim conditions.

But Rotolight has come from the other direction; instead of a strobe that happens to include a continuous light source, the Neo 2 is a continuous light source that happens to be capable of strobing at a respectable power output.

The Neo 2’s high-speed sync feature allowed me to get some nice fill-light on Allison’s face at a wide aperture while still exposing for the direct-sun highlights in the scene.
Nikon D5 | Nikon 105mm F1.4G @ F2.8 | 1/1000 sec | ISO 100
Photo by Carey Rose

Designed to be versatile for both on-the-go photographers and videographers, the Neo 2 packs a ton of neat features into a truly portable package. Let’s take a closer look.

Key features

  • Continuous light power of 2000 lux at 3 ft
  • Strobe power of F8, ISO 200 at 3 ft (AC power – roughly half this on batteries)
  • Zero recycle time for strobe work
  • Built-in Elinchrom Skyport receiver for remote high-speed sync triggering (up to 1/8000 sec)
  • Battery or AC power
  • 85,000 full-power flashes or 1.5 hours continuous light on battery power
  • Color temperature adjustable from 3150 – 6300K

Of particular interest to me was the ability to control color temperatures without using gels, the wireless triggering with high-speed sync (HSS) capability, and the lack of any sort of recharge time, even on batteries.

I’m primarily a stills photographer, so I brought along a set of Neo 2’s to a few situations where I’d ordinarily be tempted to use a speedlight. In some ways, they’re hugely impressive, but in others, well, there’s a little ways for Rotolight to go.

Getting started with continuous light

The Rotolight Neo 2’s controls – two clickable rotary dials and a power switch.

As a continuous light, the Neo 2 is really straightforward. You hit the power button on the back of the light; one rotary knob controls the brightness, and the other controls the color temperature. Because the color temperature is varied depending on a ratio of brightness between cool and warm LEDs on the panel, a mix of the two – around 4100K – will give you maximum light output.

When I was wrapping up our iPhone X review, I wanted to take a photograph of the phone being splashed with water, but I wanted to be able to fire the fastest bursts I could to catch just the right moment. That’s tough with a traditional strobe, but perfect for continuous lighting.

Sony a9 | Sony 90mm F2.8 Macro | ISO 6400 | 1/1000 sec | F5.6

I took this shot in an office building lounge area, with some ambient light, the Neo 2 directly behind the subject and firing back at the camera at full power, and my cell phone LED giving a bit of kick to the corner of the phone closest to the camera.

I set a Sony a9 to shoot at its maximum rate of 20fps (which uses an electronic shutter, and therefore is incompatible with traditional strobes anyway), and fired away as my coworker nervously emptied the cup of water from an exaggerated height. The end result, though a little noisy because of the shutter speed I wanted, has all the drama I was envisioning.

Here’s another example of using the Neo 2 in continuous mode in the same room, but with a different subject.

Fujifilm X-H1 | ISO 200 | 1/100 sec | F1.4
Photo by Jeff Keller

Part of what makes a continuous light so fun and easy to use is the instant feedback of how the image looks, and with the Neo 2, it’s small enough and powerful enough to be great for product work. This could be particularly valuable for those who aren’t necessarily comfortable with flash photography, but are looking to up their production value for an eBay or Etsy store.

Then I took our Neo 2 set into the studio for some macro shots, and things weren’t so straightforward any more.

Strobe time

This is the time where I advise you to do what you really should do anyway: read the manual. While the Neo 2’s are perfectly intuitive just as constant lights, using them in flash mode is a little tricky at first, particularly if you’re using the optional Elinchrom Skyport radio controller.

But after some reading (and re-reading) of the manual and a healthy dose of trial and error, I was able to consistently control each of the Rotolights independently in terms of flash output, color temperature and modeling light output right from the transmitter.

Fujifilm X-T2 | Fujifilm XF 80mm F2.8 Macro| ISO 200 | 1/250 sec | F5.6

Though the HSS capability of the system is limited to whichever system you choose at purchase, our Nikon transmitter worked perfectly fine on a Fujifilm X-T2 up to that camera’s maximum sync speed.

For the above image, one Rotolight was behind the subject to the right, with one of the included diffusion panels on the front so that individual LEDs aren’t discernible, and I set the color temperature to the cooler side. There’s an additional Rotolight off camera left providing some fill, and the extra highlights you can see in the reflections off of the iPhone’s lenses are non-dimming ceiling lights.

Overall, it’s a nice system for macro work, but if you require really deep depth of field, your ISO will climb quickly (a later shot with this same setup at F22 required ISO 3200). But at the very least, for macro work, you can place the lights very close to your subject.

Balancing with daylight

One of the main issues with using continuous LED lights as a one-stop shop solution for lighting became apparent anytime you took them outdoors. Without a huge panel and accompanying huge battery, overcoming sunlight or even bright overcast conditions was a non-starter, and you really were just better off with a strobe. The Rotolight Neo 2’s, it turns out, split the difference nicely.

Rotolight Neo 2
Nikon D700 | F4 | 1/125 sec | ISO 200
Ambient Only
Nikon D700 | F4 | 1/40 sec | ISO 200

Although I tend to like each of these images for different reasons, you can clearly see that the single Neo 2 off to camera left changes the feel of the scene entirely. By raising my shutter speed to take the background brightness down, I can ‘shape’ the light effectively with the Rotolight, while still maintaining context. Plus, with high speed sync, I could use the Rotolight to overpower the ambient entirely in this situation, if I wanted to.

Let’s look at how the Neo 2 copes with a much brighter scene involving direct sunlight.

Ambient only
Nikon D5 | F2.8 | 1/1000 sec | ISO 100
Rotolight Neo 2
Nikon D5 | F2.8 | 1/1000 sec | ISO 100

In this situation, I exposed for the brightest highlights in the scene while still maintaining a fairly shallow depth of field. Then I brought in the Neo 2 at maximum power to see if it could keep up – I really like the effect it has here. It’s soft, but the added fill light looks almost like it could be a reflection off of another building.

But for this situation, I needed to place the Neo 2 pretty darn close to my subject. This was necessary because, over the course of using our Neo 2’s, they would completely synchronize with our Nikon’s all the way up to 1/8000 sec – but between 1/1000 and 1/2000 sec, I started to notice a reduction in the light’s intensity.

A mediocre BTS photo, courtesy of my cell phone, shows how close the Neo 2 was to the subject.

As it happens, this 1/1000 sec shutter speed made for a good exposure for the ambient in this scene while still allowing the Neo 2 to operate optimally. But it should be pretty apparent that in bright conditions, you’ll struggle with framing your subjects wider than just head-and-shoulders with the Neo 2, to say nothing of trying to get a second evenly lit person into the scene.

The recycle time

Instant recycle time means 11fps bursts with flash are as easy as it is for Andrew to juggle this soccer ball.
Nikon D5 | Nikon AF-S 14-24mm F2.8 G | ISO 6400 | 1/1000 sec | F2.8
Photo by Carey Rose

For the above casual demo, I wanted to see just how effective and reliable the Neo 2’s were when shooting bursts. With zero recycle time and 85,000 full power flashes per battery charge, sports and action could be a really neat use case for these lights.

I cross-lit Andrew with two Neo 2’s – one upper camera left, one lower camera right. Check out the illumination on the grass in the lower right to see just how consistent the output is, even as the stadium lights caused some flicker at these shutter speeds.

ISO 6400 | 1/800 sec | F2.8
Photo by Carey Rose

It should be noted, though, that the D5 was set to 11fps instead of its maximum of 12fps – with the current setup, the Neo 2’s would occasionally fail to fire during the D5’s highest burst speed. That said, having 11fps at my disposal as Andrew went through a few penalty kicks still gave me lots of options to choose from.

Thoughts and takeaways

The Rotolight Neo 2 is a really clever device, and the more I use them, the more I enjoy them. I can envision myself really taking advantage of their versatility in a previous job of mine; I could use them as indoor interview lights for an on-location video, and then bring them outdoors to get a nice portrait of the subject to go along with the video. Two uses, one solution, and my bag is that much lighter.

Again, a Neo 2 lit by another Neo 2.
Nikon D750 | Micro-Nikkor 55mm F2.8 AI-s | ISO 100 | 1/125 sec | F8

The quality of the light is nice and soft, and the instantaneous recycle time and long battery life (for strobing) are appealing. The consistency of color accuracy, even during burst shooting, impresses further.

There’s also a litany of features that are far beyond the scope of this experience; impressive lighting simulations, like the glow of a fire or flashes of lightning, are built-in. The CRI (color rendering index) is very high, good enough for broadcast television.

And yet, I can’t help but feel that these are a bit of a niche product, that their appeal will be limited. For people that are primarily stills shooters, smaller, cheaper, battery-powered flashes will offer you far more power (you may need to get some light modifiers to approach the softness of the Neo 2’s).

For dedicated video shooters, you may find you need more power if you’re in bright conditions. For beginners just getting into artificial lighting, there are basic LED light panels all over the Internet for less than the cost of a tank of gas.

Despite all of this, I think that the Rotolight Neo 2’s have their place as a high-end, portable and versatile lighting solution, admittedly for a very specific type of customer. And more than anything else, I’m excited to see how Rotolight continues to develop this technology into the future.

Articles: Digital Photography Review (dpreview.com)

 
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DPRSplit will help pull more dynamic range from Canon 5D Mark IV Dual Pixel Raw files

14 Feb

RawDigger and FastRawViewer have released the beta version of an application called DPRSplit, designed for Canon 5D Mark IV owners. With DPRSplit, photographers can input a CR2 file from a Canon 5D Mark IV and then extract a second image from it, one with an exposure value that is about one stop lower than the original CR2 image.

This utility works only if the camera’s Dual Pixel Raw mode was enabled when the shots were taken.

Canon explains how this technology works on its website:

The Dual Pixel sensor’s pixels have a dual photodiode construction. This sensor design means the sensor can receive an A and B signals from the subject and to detect any phase differences between the two signals, allowing them to attain focus as part of the Dual Pixel AF system … During Dual Pixel RAW shooting, a single RAW file saves two images into the file. One image consists of the A+B combined image data and the other only the A image data.

Photographers benefit from this technology by using Canon’s Digital Photo Professional software, which enables users to make “microadjustments” to focus, bokeh shift, and reduce ghosting. However, the software doesn’t enable users to extract both images from the CR2 file separately—that’s where DPRSplit comes in.

With this utility, photographers get access to that second frame, which has half the light of the composite image. This means that, in essence, the camera is automatically capturing two shots, bracketed by about 1EV.

Extracted images are saved as DNG files for editing with any software that supports the format, so you can blend the images back together and get about +1EV more usable dynamic range. And since the exposures are captured simultaneously, you don’t have to worry about motion blur in your image. The only potential “issue” is a minor parallax error between the two frames.

DPRSplit beta 0.8 is free to download for Windows 7 or higher and Mac OS X 10.6 through macOS 10.13. As with any beta software, it is possible users will encounter bugs, but if you’re a 5D Mark IV user and you already shoot in Dual Pixel Raw, this one might be worth a shot.

Articles: Digital Photography Review (dpreview.com)

 
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Lightroom Classic 7.2: Major performance boost, new features, and more

14 Feb

Lightroom Classic 7.2—the performance boosted version of Lightroom DPReview got to test for ourselves at the end of January—has finally arrived! And with it come numerous performance improvements, better support for Intel hardware, a fix for speed issues experienced by some users, and some new features to boot.

Additionally, Adobe has also updated the new cloud-based Lightroom CC ecosystem for both desktop and mobile operating systems. Let’s take them one at a time.

Lightroom Classic Performance Boost

The company explains that it has worked with Intel to improve performance scaling on computers that have multiple cores and at least 12GB of RAM, and as we showed in January, the result is much faster importing and preview generation, and improved speed for things like adjustments rendering in Develop, HDR/Panos rendering, and more.

“One key attribute of the enhancements is that they scale appropriately with a customer’s investment in hardware,” says Adobe. Users who invest in newer, more powerful hardware will see more performance improvements, particularly if the system has at least 12GB of memory. This time around, Adobe says it focused on batch processing improvements (how efficiently system resources are used and batch tasks are completed), but the company will also focus on Interactive (interface response speed) needs in the near future.

Some users had experienced problems with Lightroom Classic slowing down over time, an issue Adobe says it has fixed “in most cases,” though it is possible some users will still experience this issue.

Lightroom Classic Feature Enhancements

Performance improvements and fixes aside, Lightroom Classic 7.2 comes with multiple new features, including a text search for finding a specific folder (“Folder Search”), the ability to filter favorites within folders, an option for creating collection sets from folders for use with Lightroom mobile, as well as a feature for creating collections from Map Module pins.

This version of Lightroom Classic also adds a library filter for unedited and edited images and enables users to create smart collections with unedited or edited images.

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Finally, Adobe says it has enabled Photoshop Continuously Scalable User Interface in the Adobe Camera Raw plugin, with the scaling limited to 100% or 200%. Support for per-monitor scaling in Windows has also been added. In explaining the plugin update, Adobe said, “This is primarily a Windows change to sync up Photoshop, and Windows users will now be able to scale the ACR plugin from 100% to 500%, in increments of 100%.”

The full Lightroom Classic 7.2 update changelog is available here, new camera support can be found here, and new lens profile support can be found here.

Updates to Lightroom CC and Lightroom Mobile

In addition to the Lightroom Classic CC updates, the whole Lightroom CC ecosystem—including the Lightroom Mobile apps on iOS and Android—have been updated as well with “optimized performance, added support for new cameras and lenses, and some great new features for desktop and Android.”

Adobe says it put a lot of effort into “tuning and improving stability” with this update. Lightroom CC on Mac and Windows will see performance improve when moving between photos, grid scrolling, and exporting, while all the apps across mobile and desktop should be “a lot more stable.”

As for new features, Lightroom CC for desktop gets the ability to add copyright to imported images; meanwhile, Lightroom Mobile on Android gets a geometry tab for correcting perspective distortion, the ability to add a watermark upon export, the ability to search your Lightroom library with Google Assistant, and a new “Add to Lr” option that will allow you to add photos from third party apps directly into your Lightroom library.

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All of these updates are available now, so if you have a Creative Cloud subscription, update to the latest versions and give them a go. And if you want to dive deeper into all of these new features, head over to the Adobe blog.

Articles: Digital Photography Review (dpreview.com)

 
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3 Key Tips for Making More Dynamic Photos

07 Feb

Do you find it difficult to make photographs which stand out and truly resonate with the people who view them? Let me share with you three key ways you can practice that will change your photographic experience and will assist you in making more dynamic photos.

Two Kayan long neck women laughing - 3 Key Tips for Making More Dynamic Photographs

Two Kayan friends share a joke in Chiang Mai, Thailand, Asia.

1. Know your subject – don’t just know about them

Research, understand and relate to your subject. Communicate with your subject – whether that be a person, pet or place, (or anything else,) you need to relate to and have rapport your subject.

The more knowledge and understanding you have of your subject the easier it will be for you to make compelling photographs of it or them. Sometimes, as is common with travel photography, having a fresh perspective on a subject will allow you to capture it in a way an expert may not see. But generally having some education about your subject will aid you in producing better, more dynamic photos.

Kayan girl having fun playing with soap bubbles. - 3 Key Tips for Making More Dynamic Photographs

Kayan girl having fun playing with soap bubbles.

Develop an intuitive sense

Knowing your subject well will give you more opportunity to get an intuitive sense of when it’s the right time to make a picture. Knowing and being passionate about your subject will help you develop your intuition.

Being comfortable with your subject, even if you do not know it so well, will also help you to create more interesting and unique photographs of that subject. Having the ability to really focus in on your subject, observing them carefully, the surroundings, the lighting and any activity associated with them, will help you to develop a meaningful connection.

This is something that can sometimes happen quite quickly and at other times will need to be developed over a longer duration.

Kayan girl with a front tooth missing. 3 Key Tips for Making More Dynamic Photographs

Kayan girl with a front tooth missing.

2. Don’t Focus on your equipment

“The fact is that relatively few photographers ever master their medium. Instead they allow the medium to master them and go on an endless squirrel cage chase from new lens to new paper to new developer to new gadget, never staying with one piece of equipment long enough to learn its full capacities, becoming lost in a maze of technical information that is of little or no use since they don’t know what to do with it.” – Edward Weston

There’s a lot to be said for knowing your camera equipment well and being confident using it like you’ve mastered it. Being in control of your gear and being competent using it so that your focus can be immersed on your subject allows you to connect in a more meaningful way because you are not distracted. Achieving this ability takes nothing more than a little study and a whole lot of practice.

Porter at a fresh market in Chiang Mai, Thailand. 3 Key Tips for Making More Dynamic Photographs

Porter at a fresh market in Chiang Mai, Thailand.

Use camera settings you’re comfortable with

Using camera settings you are comfortable with releases you to give more attention to your subject. When you work with camera equipment you are not familiar with or maybe when you first start trying to understand and use manual mode, your focus will be on your camera, not on your subject.

Becoming familiar with a camera and how to work with it confidently takes concentrated practice. Just as a musician will not take the stage and play a brand new song they’ve written without practicing it well first. Neither should you expect stunning results from a camera or technique you are not familiar with and well practiced at doing. Sure, sometimes you can get lucky, but to be consistently good you need to practice a lot.

Buddhist nun standing at the temple window - 3 Key Tips for Making More Dynamic Photographs

Buddhist nun standing at the temple window.

Balance the technical and creative aspects

Balancing the technical and creative aspects of photography is challenging for most people. You are generally either more technically oriented and love learning how to use your new equipment or you are more creatively oriented without much interest in learning to understand all the bells and whistles on your camera.

Be mindful that photography is a creative process which requires a complicated tool. Even if you are using the most basic of cameras you must command a certain amount of technical skill to produce pleasing results regularly. To grow as a photographer and develop your own style, you will need to find a happy balance of the technical and creative aspects of this art form.

close up of a man riding a tricycle taxi with a strong shadow in Chiang Mai, Thailand. 3 Key Tips for Making More Dynamic Photographs

Tricycle taxi abstract

Aim to capture mood and feeling

Aim to capture mood and feeling in your photographs by giving as much of your attention to the technical settings as to the feeling you have and how you want to portray your subject. If you set your camera so your exposure is good and you have as much depth of field as you want, you will be free to connect with your subject. This will give you more freedom to get a real feeling for what you are doing which will resonate in your photographs.

Reaching beyond the technical and concentrating your creative energy on the subject you will produce photographs which draw in your audience. They will be able to experience and feel the relationship you have with your subject.

portrait of a red head teenage boy - 3 Key Tips for Making More Dynamic Photographs

3. Follow your passion

“Your connection with the world is unique” – Martin Parr

This is why people who photograph subjects they are passionate about will typically produce more creative, interesting pictures than someone who photographs a subject they have no real interest in or connection with.

My wife takes far better photos of flowers than I do. She is passionate about flowers, she loves growing them. She has a lot of knowledge about flowers and flowering trees. Taking care of them and making sure they have the best conditions in which to flourish is important to her. She consistently makes far more beautiful and creative photographs of flowers than I do because she is passionate about them. They may not always be technically correct, but they are made with feeling and convey that feeling.

pink orchid flowers - 3 Key Tips for Making More Dynamic Photographs

Photo by: Pansa Landwer-Johan

Have a deeper, more soulful relationship

When you have a deeper, more soulful relationship with your subject, you will naturally make more interesting, creative photographs as well. Your connection with the world is unique. No one else sees things and experiences life as you do. By applying your unique perspective and conveying this through your photographs they will resonate more strongly with people who view them.

You may even find you pay less attention to technical aspects as you genuinely begin to follow your feelings and become immersed in photographing your chosen subject. Enjoying photography in this manner can be deeply therapeutic. As you begin to concentrate totally and follow the flow of your feelings toward your subject everything else will become secondary, nothing else will matter.

At times like this, you must take extra care to be aware of your own safety. Many times I have stepped back onto a road, come close to stepping backward off a jetty and had wet shoes because I stepped in a puddle. I was so focused on what I was photographing and not paying much attention to anything else. So please take care!

Woman in the mist with a red scarf over her head an shoulders - 3 Key Tips for Making More Dynamic Photographs

A practical example

When I visited the Grand Bazaar in Istanbul, Turkey, I went looking for a quarter I’d read about where craftspeople still produce copper wares using traditional methods. I love photographing people engaged in creative activities and I had never photographed people making copper goods.

I eventually discovered the right location and found three men in a small workshop. Two of them were putting finishing touches to some beautifully crafted artworks.

3 Key Tips for Making More Dynamic Photographs

I politely approached and using gestures and showing them my camera, as we had no common language, I was welcomed in and made to feel comfortable. I showed an interest in what these men were doing and they were comfortable with my presence. The older man even gave me a glass of Turkish tea. I quickly became engrossed making photographs of the creative process I was witnessing.

3 Key Tips for Making More Dynamic Photographs

Despite having no prior experience with this subject I was still able to connect with the men and easily relate to what they were doing. Eventually, a fourth man entered the workshop and he spoke some English so I was able to ask how many generations this family had been working with copper. After a considerable amount of discussion all three men, who were cousins and father/uncle, looked at me and shrugged their shoulders. Their tradition had been in their family longer than they could tell me.

3 Key Tips for Making More Dynamic Photographs

Sadly, the fourth man who had joined us was a buyer. He told me he wanted to push the price the craftsmen were asking for their artworks down and was threatening to steal their designs and mass produce them in his factory (which now mass produces lamps, coffee pots, urns and other goods which were traditionally made in small, family-owned workshops.) As he told me this story I continued to photograph with the aim of capturing the mood of the conversation.

3 Key Tips for Making More Dynamic Photographs

In conclusion

Connecting with your subject in a meaningful manner will support and enhance your creative process. Knowing your subject in advance, or adapting quickly to relate to it in a short time, gives you a depth of connection that is not likely if you are distant and non-communicative.

Being technically competent enough to not spend most (or even some) of your attention on your equipment will release you to develop your connection with your subject.

portrait of a young Kayan girl in Chiang Mai, Thailand. - 3 Key Tips for Making More Dynamic Photographs

Young Kayan girl without her neck rings on.

Being passionate about your chosen subject will favor you to go that much deeper and further without distractions to create more interesting and more creative photographs.

The most effective way to learn these things is to choose a subject that you can photograph many times, preferably one that you enjoy. If your chosen subject is a person, one who enjoys being photographed. Make time to photograph your subject as often as you find enjoyment in the creative process and develop a feeling for the technical settings of your camera. Doing this will help you to learn more about your subject and hopefully, you’ll become more passionate in the process as well.

Watch the video below to see this in action.

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Photoshop CC update adds AI-powered subject selection tool and more

24 Jan

The AI-powered Select Subject feature that Adobe demoed back in November has finally arrived in Photoshop CC! The feature was officially released just minutes ago in Photoshop CC version 19.1, which also includes the addition of a Decontamination slider to the Select and Mask workspace and some significant compatibility updates for Windows users.

The major update is, obviously, the arrival of Select Subject to Photoshop CC. When it was first demoed in November, the Photoshop team touted the tool—which is powered by Adobe Sensei AI technology—as a way to “select prominent subjects in an image with one click.” That’s what they hope to deliver today.

A single click of the Select Subject button in the Quick Select tool should easily isolate your subject in images like the one below:

Of course, more difficult scenarios where the subject isn’t so obviously delineated against the background will give Select Subject more trouble—the original demo video, embedded below, showed that—but it promises to “let you get started with your selections faster than ever before.”

In addition to Select Subject, Adobe also added a Decontamination slider to the Select and Mask workspace that allows you to select the amount of color decontamination applied to an image:

For Windows users, version 19.1 brings much-requested support for Windows High Density Monitors—allowing you to switch between displays of varying resolutions and sizes seamlessly. Jerry Harris, principal scientist on the Photoshop team and himself a Windows user, explains what this means in the Adobe blog post:

With this release, Photoshop on Windows 10 Creator’s Edition now offers a full range of choices for UI scale factors from 100% through 400%, in 25% increments. This means that the Photoshop user interface will look crisp, beautiful, and the right size no matter the density of your monitor. Photoshop will now automatically adjust itself based on your Windows settings, making it simple to set up.

[…]

In addition, we worked very closely with Microsoft to provide per-monitor scaling across monitors with different scale factors. This means that a high resolution (HiDPI) laptop now works seamlessly alongside a lower resolution desktop monitor (or vice versa). One monitor can have a scale factor of 175% and another a scale factor of 400%.

And finally, Windows users also get advanced support for the Windows dial, which can now adjust brush settings while you paint. Before this, you could only adjust settings between brush strokes, but you can now adjust brush size, opacity, and other settings as you draw:

As of publication, this update should be live and ready to download if you’re already a Creative Cloud subscriber. If you want to learn more about any of the features above, or dive into bug fixes and other minutia, head over to the Adobe blog. Otherwise, just update your copy through the Creative Cloud app and you’re ready to go.

Articles: Digital Photography Review (dpreview.com)

 
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9 More Great Apps You Need for Your Smartphone

17 Jan

What are the next great apps you need for your Android and your iPhone?

There are many apps out there that are fun to use. In part two we bring you 10 more great apps for your smartphone (read part one here). Some of the ones listed below are for shooting, some are for creativity, and others are great tools for the landscape photographer. Most are available for both Android and iOS, some just available for iOS.

Shooting apps

#1 – ProCamera 10 – iOS – $ 4.99 9 More Great Apps You Need for Your Smartphone

ProCamera gives you a lot of control over your settings while shooting with your iPhone. It is easy to use and offers advanced features such as RAW capture, a live histogram, and an anti-shake feature. In the new iPhones with multiple camera lenses, it has the ability to access either lens.

The images come out sharp with accurate exposures. The reason is that
you can separate the focus and exposure points to really create a sharp balanced composition.

You can also shoot in either Manual, Semi-Automatic or Automatic mode with on-screen display modes of standard, medium or light to hide non-critical display elements. It also has a low light mode called Low Light Plus which captures up to 64 photos and combines them into one photo with reduced noise.

9 More Great Apps You Need for Your Smartphone - ProCamera

ProCamera 10 screenshots.

9 More Great Apps You Need for Your Smartphone - VSCO#2 – VSCO Cam – for iOS and Android – Free with in-app purchases

VSCO Cam is one of my favorite apps. This free app has a powerful built-in camera with very clear image resolution and the ability to separate exposure and focus points which is vital in creating optimal imagery with a smartphone. This app also has built-in presets as well as ones you can purchase. It has a very active community that shares photo “recipes” to gain inspiration and create similar photographic styles in post-processing.

When taking photos in VSCO, you can have manual control of focus, exposure, white balance, and even ISO and shutter speed. Depending on the model of your phone, you can even shoot in RAW mode.

A big part of this app is the VSCO community and the navigation can be a bit confusing, but the results are consistently great.

Light Effects Apps

10 More Great Apps You Need for Your Smartphone - Lens Distortions#3 – Lens Distortions – iOS only – Free

Lens Distortions is a unique app that will change the way you see iPhone photo filters. The app’s editing platform allows you to combine subtle blur effects, light leaks, textures, sun flares, and sunbursts to help you enhance your images with light.

Lens Distortions is a great app for any iPhone photographer who is looking for unique filter effects that are easy to control and can be used to highlight a specific subject rather than apply it to the entire image. When used properly, the effect can look like it was taken on a much more advanced camera. Since smartphones don’t have an aperture which allows you to create a sunburst or sun flare effect like you can on a DSLR, this app will let you apply a sunburst, and give a realistic effect of the sun’s rays.

9 More Great Apps You Need for Your Smartphone

 10 More Great Apps You Need for Your Smartphone - Rays#4 – Rays App – iOS only – $ 0.99

The Rays app is great for creating realistic light ray effects quickly and easily. The rays are only added to the bright highlight areas and have the effect of passing through objects while adding a three-dimensional quality to your image. You can add shafts of light streaming through trees, rays filtering through clouds, beams of light coming through the fog, or even rays coming out of some text. You can customize the color of the rays using a color picker and specify where the rays will be visible.

9 More Great Apps You Need for Your Smartphone - Rays

Blend Mode Apps

Creating Your Own Textures

Before introducing some blending mode apps, I want to introduce you to creating your own textures. You can create your own palettes by taking pictures of interesting tree bark, floors, walls, or anything that catches your eye and combine it in a blending program.

Here are a few textures that I’ve used to create an interesting appearance in the background of an image.

9 More Great Apps You Need for Your Smartphone

There are several apps available that give you stock textures to add to your compositions, but why not create your own? It’s just another way to see creatively and use your smartphone to make something unusual.

9 More Great Apps You Need for Your Smartphone - superimpose#6 – Superimpose – iOS / Android

($ 1.99 for IOS, $ 0.99 for Android)

If you want a powerful app to combine images and textures, look at Superimpose. You can create professional level layered images on your Smartphone and easily blend one photo on top of another with this app.

You can also use this tool to blend textures, overlay borders, or create double exposures while adjusting transparency with 18 different blend modes.

To use this app, first load a background image. Then load a foreground image, masking out any unwanted elements in the foreground image. You can then move, scale, resize or flip the foreground and adjust colors and exposure. Then you can save the blended image to the photo library at full resolution.

Use the textures you created in the exercise above to give your images a unique and creative twist.

9 More Great Apps You Need for Your Smartphone - superimpose

The rich brown hues of the copper background layer and the blend modes give a warmth to this image that it didn’t have before. You can move your background layer around to work with the foreground. Notice you don’t see the copper texture in the sky in this sample image. That was because it was rotated to work in that space with minimum texture.

9 More Great Apps You Need for Your Smartphone - mextures app#7 – Mextures – iOS / $ 1.99

Mextures app lets you create grunge patterns, textures, and light leaks quickly and easily. With Mextures, you bring in an image from your camera roll and decide what texture from their menu you would like to use as a background layer. Once you apply that texture to the first layer, you can add another layer of texture, pattern, or light.

Layers are used in more advanced photography programs like Photoshop and are useful for making color and texture adjustments that won’t affect the whole picture. In this app, you can add texture in layer one, and then add gradient color in layer two. If you decide that you don’t like the gradient color, you can just delete that layer and redo it without affecting the texture layer.

Layers in both Photoshop and apps like this work the same way. Imagine having a stack of tissue paper, and each tissue has an element that you can add to your image. One tissue layer could have color, one could have texture, and one could have light leaks. It’s easy to take them in and out or change them without affecting the layers above or below.

This app gives you formulas that are saved presets which may be a combination of textures, colors, and gradients. You can even scroll through “Guest” formulas, and use them for your own images.

9 More Great Apps You Need for Your Smartphone - mextures app

Plumeria Flower created with Mextures App

For Landscape Photographers

9 More Great Apps You Need for Your Smartphone - Aurora app#7 – My Aurora Forecast and Alerts – For Android / iOS – Free

Many photographers have shooting the Northern lights on their bucket list. This app will help you track the sometimes elusive Aurora Borealis and give you a forecast based on the Aurora activity. You can track the Aurora from your present location or at another location in the world. It will also give you alerts as to when the Aurora is active and in what location.

An interesting way to use this app is to follow Aurora cams around the world and then set your alerts as to when these areas are active. Then you can tune in and watch the show!

Get the app for Android here – and iOS here.

9 More Great Apps You Need for Your Smartphone#8 – Geotag Photos Pro – For Android / iOS – Free

Geotagging is the process of adding geographical identification metadata to your photographs or videos. This data usually consists of filename, folder location, city, GPS coordinates, date, and time captured.

The Geotag Photos Pro app is meant to be used while you are shooting with your DSLR. It will record your position while you are taking photos and create a GPX file that you can export to your desktop app or to other apps and services like Lightroom, Flickr, and Apple Photos.

This is a particularly good tool for landscape photographers or anyone who wants to know exactly their route or the specific location they shot a group of images. The images below show how you can set your interval time for the track log as well as watch the track log as it is being created.

9 More Great Apps You Need for Your Smartphone

Don’t worry, we weren’t walking in the ocean! The app did not recognize the pier in the route.

It is a quick, easy, and cheap way to keep track of your locations and log a shoot. There is no need for any expensive bulky additions to the hot shoe of your camera. It’s all tracked by synchronizing the clock on the app with the clock on your camera. It will create a track log with custom interval settings that you set up.

The best part is you can bring it into the Lightroom mapping module or connect with the Geotag Photo Pros online site and it will create a map of your shoot with thumbnail images along the route.

9 More Great Apps You Need for Your Smartphone

Mapped route after it was imported into Lightroom.

9 More Great Apps You Need for Your Smartphone - sun seeker#9 – Sun Seeker – iOS / Android

$ 9.99 for IOS – $ 7.49 for Android

Sun Seeker is a great app for landscape photographers as it shows the angle of the sun and where it will be setting and rising in several different views. It provides a flat compass view as well as a real time image with an overlay of the sun’s projected solar path. You can choose any date and location in the world to plan for optimal light conditions. It helps you to find the right time and location to set up for your landscape photography.

9 More Great Apps You Need for Your Smartphone

Views showing the projected trajectory of the sun in the Sun Seeker App.

Conclusion

Whether or not you are using your smartphone as your primary camera, or you’re using it as a tool to help you get the shot with your DSLR, these apps can add fun and functionality to any shoot. Give them a try and let me know what you think!

If there are others that we’ve missed (check part one also) please give us the info in the comments below. What apps are your favorite?

The post 9 More Great Apps You Need for Your Smartphone by Holly Higbee-Jansen appeared first on Digital Photography School.


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Sony a9 firmware 2.00 brings improvements to continuous AF and more

12 Jan

Sony has released firmware version 2.00 for its flagship a9 mirrorless camera. The most notable improvements are to continuous AF, with the company claiming enhanced performance while tracking as well as more stability when zooming.

Speaking of stability, the firmware should bring general bug fixes and reliability enhancements, and the overheating warning function is more accurate, according to Sony.

There are also a number of improvements related to metadata which you can find in the press release below. The firmware update is now available for download.

Press Release

Firmware version 2.00 provides the following benefits:

Continuous AF Enhancements:

  • Enhanced performance of continuous auto focus on moving subjects
  • Enhanced stability of the AF-C when zooming

Added Functions:

  • Adds the function to assign Protecting images to custom Key
  • Adds the function to transfer (FTP) protected files at once
    Note: Only for images protected using version 2.00 or higher.
  • Displays wired LAN MAC address
  • Inputs IPTC metadata to files
    Note: IPTC information must be created beforehand using the IPTC Metadata Preset software.
  • Inputs camera serial number to metadata

Other Improvements:

  • Improves operational stability
  • Improves accuracy of the overheating warning function

Articles: Digital Photography Review (dpreview.com)

 
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Panasonic announces Lumix DC-GH5S, an even more video-focused GH5

09 Jan

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Panasonic has unveiled the Lumix DC-GH5S, an even more video-centric variant of the company’s GH5 hybrid stills/video camera. Aside from some minor cosmetic differences the two cameras are identical, however the GH5S has been designed to maximize low-light sensitivity and provides a deep feature set tailored to video shooters’ needs.

The GH5S uses a slightly larger, but lower resolution 12.5MP sensor whose ‘multi-aspect’ design offers a series of ~10.2MP crops with the same angle of view. It gains the ability to shoot the wider-angle DCI 4K format at up to 60p, whereas the GH5 tops out at 24p. Both cameras can shoot UHD 4K at up to 60p.

The sensor features a “dual gain” design that Panasonic calls “Dual Native ISO.” This uses two separate sensor read-out circuits – one that maximizes dynamic range at lower sensitivities, and one that prioritizes noise reduction at a dynamic range cost. Unusually, Panasonic lets you limit its camera to one of these modes.

Despite the outward similarities, the GH5S’ list of changes compared to the GH5 is a long one. Image stabilization has been removed to avoid unwanted interactions between a floating sensor and the dollies and gimbals pro shooters tend to favor. VLog-L, offered as an paid upgrade on the GH5, is included as standard. Autofocus is rated down to –5 EV compared to –4EV in the GH5.

The list of differences also includes up to 240fps framerate in 1080p “Variable Frame Rate” mode, a 120fps refresh rate in the electronic viewfinder, 14-bit Raw stills shooting, time code in/out functionality, and LUT-corrected display in playback as well as capture. For a detailed look at the GH5S’ additional capabilities, head to our first impressions review.

The Panasonic Lumix DC-GH5S will be available February 2nd for $ 2499 body-only.

Panasonic Announces the Ultimate Hybrid DSLM with a newly developed 10.2MP High Sensitivity MOS sensor

Introducing the LUMIX GH5S: Exceptional Mirrorless Videography and Photography, designed and developed for professional filmmakers

  • Introducing a newly developed 10.2MP High Sensitivity MOS sensor for enhanced image quality in low light: Allowing up to 51,200 ISO recording without extended ISO.
  • Time Code IN/OUT for easy synchronization of multiple cameras and Dual Native ISO, providing low range (400) and high range (2,500) ISO environments.
  • True “Multi-Aspect Ratio” Function in Both Photo and Video

Las Vegas, NV (January 8, 2018) – Panasonic is proud to introduce the new hybrid Digital Single Lens Mirrorless Camera LUMIX GH5S with expanded video recording capability and enhanced image quality. Designed and developed for professional filmmakers, the LUMIX GH5S achieves highest-ever image sensitivity and video image quality in the history of LUMIX cameras, especially in low-light situations.

Packed with big features to satisfy demanding photographers and videographers alike
The new 10.2-megapixel Digital MOS Sensor with Dual Native ISO Technology and Venus Engine 10 faithfully reproduce even dark parts of the image, allowing high ISO capture when the use of supplemental lighting may not be possible. This sensor is a multi-aspect type with a sufficient margin for realizing the same angle of view in 4:3,17:9,16:9 and 3:2 aspect ratios. The sensor also enables photo shooting in 14-bit RAW format, providing higher flexibility for professional RAW stills development workflows. When shooting in dark environments, videographers can now focus on filming that perfect shot as they no longer need to worry about noise which often results from having to use higher ISOs. The Dual Native ISO Technology suppresses noise to produce cleaner footage when taken in all light. Both videographers and photographers can now enjoy the same diagonal field of view across all aspect ratios with the True “Multi-Aspect Ratio” Function. This feature means you can easily swap between difference aspect ratios giving you the accuracy you want from your lenses, and making the process easier while producing and editing in post-production. The LUMIX GH5S is compatible with Time Code IN and OUT, like the professional camcorders, which is easy to set using the flash sync terminal and bundled conversion cable for a standard BNC terminal. This is especially important for “lip synchronization” when using multiple cameras. The LUMIX GH5S can be used as Time Code generator for other GH5S cameras and professional camcorders. The Time Code IN/OUT functionality makes a production teams job pain-free as it provides synchronization for both video and audio devices used on multi-cam productions.

The LUMIX GH5 achieved 4KUHD 60p video recording for the first time as a digital mirrorless camera in 2017.2 The new LUMIX GH5S establishes a new milestone by realizing the world’s first 4K 60p video recording in Cinema 4K (4096×2160), 3 capable of internal 4:2:2 10-bit video recording up to Cinema 4K30p and internal 4:2:0 8-bit Cinema 4K60p. subsampling commonly used for film production, for even more faithful color reproduction.4 The LUMIX GH5S also records 4:2:2 10-bit 400-Mbps All-Intra in 4K 30p/25p/24p and 200- Mbps All-Intra in Full-HD.

Continuing the LUMIX GH tradition, there is no time limit for both Full-HD and 4K video recording. The LUMIX GH5S complies with 4K HDR video with Hybrid Log Gamma (HLG) mode in Photo Style. A low-bit-rate recording mode, 4K HEVC for HLG, is available. This enables playback on AV equipment compatible with the HLG Display format, such as Panasonic 4K HDR TVs.

The VFR (Variable Frame Rate) function lets users record overcranked (time-lapse) and undercranked (slo-mo) video in C4K/4K (60 fps, maximum 2.5x slower) and FHD (240 fps, maximum 10x slower). A V-LogL and Rec.709 LUT (Look Up Table) are pre-installed in the camera, so users can play videos recorded in V-LogL without having to separately purchase a Software Upgrade Key. Four additional LUTs can be installed using the Panasonic Varicam (.VLT) file format.

DFD (Depth From Defocus) technology and ultra-high-speed digital signal processing achieve fast auto focusing of approximately 0.07 sec 6 with 12 fps (AFS) / 8 fps (AFC) in 12- bit RAW and 10 (AFS) / 7 (AFC) fps in 14-bit RAW high-speed burst shooting. In addition to a total of 225 focus areas, The options for Face/Eye Recognition, Tracking AF, 1-area AF and Pinpoint AF are available for precise focusing. The 4K PHOTO enables 60 fps high-speed capture in approximately 8-megapixel equivalent resolution.

Achieve outstanding footage in any environment, especially in low light
As a camera that excels in shooting in low light, the LUMIX GH5S boasts -5EV luminance detection performance with Low Light AF thanks to the higher sensitivity and optimized tuning of the sensor. Live Boost is another practical feature that makes it possible to check the composition even in total darkness, by boosting the sensitivity just for Live View. The magnification ratio in MF assist is increased from conventional 10x to 20x, which is convenient especially for astronomical photography. An AF Point Scope function, first introduced in the Lumix G9 and Night mode are also integrated.

In order to make the GH5S tough enough to withstand even heavy field use, it is composed of a magnesium alloy full die-cast front, rear and top frame that is not only splashproof7 and dustproof but also freezeproof down to -10 degrees Celsius. The GH5S is equipped with a double SD Memory Card slot, compatible with the high-speed, high-capacity UHS-II and Video Speed Class 90. Users can flexibly choose the recording method from Relay Recording, Backup Recording or Allocation Recording. The HDMI Type A terminal is provided, along with the USB-C Gen1 interface.

Exceptional image capture without concern
The GH5S has a large LVF (Live View Finder) with a stunningly high magnification ratio of approximately 1.52x/0.76x (35mm camera equivalent) providing smooth display at 120 fps. A high-precision, high-speed OLED (Organic Light-Emitting Diode) display features 3,680K-dot resolution and 100% field of view. In addition to dual dials, an omni-directional joystick enables more intuitive and flexible operation.

The GH5S includes Bluetooth and Wi-Fi® connectivity to offer a more flexible shooting experience and instant image sharing with easy operation. Compatibility with Bluetooth 4.2 (called BLE: Bluetooth Low Energy) enables constant connection with a smartphone/tablet with minimum power consumption. For Wi-Fi, 5 GHz (IEEE802.11ac)8 can be selected in addition to the conventional 2.4 GHz (IEEE 802.11b/g/n) for an even more secure and stable connection.

For extended battery life and a more stable hold, the new Battery Grip DMW-BGGH5 (sold separately) is available. The XLR Microphone Adaptor DMW-XLR1 (sold separately) allows high-res sound recording with an external XLR microphone.9

The Panasonic LUMIX GH5s will be available from end of February 2 and will retail for $ 2499 (body only).

*1 RAW files are in 14-bit even when 12-bit is selected.
*2 4K 60p/50p(for a Digital Single Lens Mirrorless Camera), 4:2:2 10-bit (for a digital interchangeable lens camera) as of 4 January, 2017
*3 As of January 8, 2018 as a Digital Single Lens Mirrorless camera that complies with 4K (4096×2160) resolution defined by Digital Cinema Initiatives(DCI). According to a Panasonic study.
*4 4:2:0 8-bit in C4K 60p and 4K 60p recording on an SD Memory Card.
*5 Contrast AF with DFD Technology works only with Panasonic Micro Four Thirds lenses. *6 In AFS, at wide-end with H-ES12060 (CIPA) when LVF display speed is set to 120fps.
*7 Splash Proof is a term used to describe an extra level of protection this camera offers against exposure to a minimal amount of moisture, water or dust. Splash Proof does not guarantee that damage will not occur if this camera is subjected to direct contact with water.
*8 5GHz Wi-Fi is not available in some countries.
*9 In MOV only

Panasonic Lumix DC-GH5S specifications

Price
MSRP $ 2499
Body type
Body type SLR-style mirrorless
Body material Magnesium alloy
Sensor
Max resolution 3680 x 2760
Other resolutions 3:2 (3840 x 2560), 16:9 (4016 x 2256), 1:1 (2752 x 2752)
Image ratio w:h 1:1, 4:3, 3:2, 16:9
Effective pixels 10 megapixels
Sensor photo detectors 12 megapixels
Sensor size Four Thirds (17.3 x 13 mm)
Sensor type CMOS
Processor Venus Engine 10
Color space sRGB, Adobe RGB
Color filter array Primary color filter
Image
ISO Auto, 160-51200 (expands to 80-204800)
Boosted ISO (minimum) 80
Boosted ISO (maximum) 204800
White balance presets 5
Custom white balance Yes (4 slots)
Image stabilization No
Uncompressed format RAW
JPEG quality levels Fine, standard
File format
  • JPEG (Exif v2.31)
  • Raw (Panasonic ARW, 12/14-bit)
Optics & Focus
Autofocus
  • Contrast Detect (sensor)
  • Multi-area
  • Center
  • Selective single-point
  • Tracking
  • Single
  • Continuous
  • Touch
  • Face Detection
  • Live View
Autofocus assist lamp Yes
Digital zoom Yes (2x-4x)
Manual focus Yes
Number of focus points 225
Lens mount Micro Four Thirds
Focal length multiplier 2×
Screen / viewfinder
Articulated LCD Fully articulated
Screen size 3.2
Screen dots 1,620,000
Touch screen Yes
Screen type TFT LCD
Live view Yes
Viewfinder type Electronic
Viewfinder coverage 100%
Viewfinder magnification 1.52× (0.76× 35mm equiv.)
Viewfinder resolution 3,680,000
Photography features
Minimum shutter speed 60 sec
Maximum shutter speed 1/8000 sec
Maximum shutter speed (electronic) 1/16000 sec
Exposure modes
  • Program
  • Aperture priority
  • Shutter priority
  • Manual
Built-in flash No
External flash Yes (via hot shoe or flash sync port)
Flash modes Auto, Auto/Red-eye Reduction, Forced On, Forced On/Red-eye Reduction, Slow Sync., Slow Sync./Red-eye Reduction, Forced Off
Flash X sync speed 1/250 sec
Drive modes
  • Single
  • Continuous
  • 4K Photo
  • Focus Stacking
  • Self-timer
Continuous drive 12.0 fps
Self-timer Yes (2 or 10 secs, 10 secs w/3 images)
Metering modes
  • Multi
  • Center-weighted
  • Spot
Exposure compensation ±5 (at 1/3 EV steps)
AE Bracketing ±3 (3, 5, 7 frames at 1/3 EV, 2/3 EV, 1 EV steps)
WB Bracketing Yes
Videography features
Format MPEG-4, H.264, H.265
Modes
  • 4096 x 2060 @ 60p / 150 Mbps, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 4096 x 2060 @ 50p / 150 Mbps, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 4096 x 2060 @ 30p / 150 Mbps, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 4096 x 2060 @ 30p / 100 Mbps, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 4096 x 2060 @ 25p / 150 Mbps, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 4096 x 2060 @ 24p / 400 Mbps, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 4096 x 2060 @ 24p / 150 Mbps, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 4096 x 2060 @ 24p / 100 Mbps, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 4096 x 2060 @ 23.98p / 400 Mbps, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 4096 x 2060 @ 23.98p / 150 Mbps, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 4096 x 2060 @ 23.98p / 100 Mbps, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 3840 x 2160 @ 60p / 150 Mbps, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 3840 x 2160 @ 50p / 150 Mbps, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 3840 x 2160 @ 30p / 150 Mbps, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 3840 x 2160 @ 30p / 100 Mbps, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 3840 x 2160 @ 25p / 400 Mbps, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 3840 x 2160 @ 25p / 150 Mbps, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 3840 x 2160 @ 25p / 100 Mbps, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 3840 x 2160 @ 24p / 400 Mbps, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 3840 x 2160 @ 24p / 150 Mbps, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 3840 x 2160 @ 24p / 100 Mbps, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 3840 x 2160 @ 23.98p / 150 Mbps, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 3840 x 2160 @ 23.98p / 100 Mbps, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 1920 x 1080 @ 60p / 200 Mbps, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 1920 x 1080 @ 60p / 100 Mbps, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 1920 x 1080 @ 50p / 200 Mbps, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 1920 x 1080 @ 50p / 100 Mbps, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 1920 x 1080 @ 30p / 200 Mbps, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 1920 x 1080 @ 30p / 200 Mbps, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 1920 x 1080 @ 25p / 200 Mbps, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 1920 x 1080 @ 25p / 100 Mbps, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 1920 x 1080 @ 24p / 200 Mbps, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 1920 x 1080 @ 24p / 100 Mbps, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 1920 x 1080 @ 23.98p / 200 Mbps, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 1920 x 1080 @ 23.98p / 100 Mbps, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 4096 x 2060 @ 60p / 150 Mbps, MP4, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 4096 x 2060 @ 50p / 150 Mbps, MP4, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 4096 x 2060 @ 30p / 150 Mbps, MP4, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 4096 x 2060 @ 30p / 100 Mbps, MP4, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 4096 x 2060 @ 25p / 150 Mbps, MP4, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 4096 x 2060 @ 25p / 100 Mbps, MP4, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 4096 x 2060 @ 24p / 400 Mbps, MP4, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 4096 x 2060 @ 24p / 150 Mbps, MP4, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 4096 x 2060 @ 24p / 100 Mbps, MP4, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 4096 x 2060 @ 23.98p / 400 Mbps, MP4, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 4096 x 2060 @ 23.98p / 150 Mbps, MP4, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 4096 x 2060 @ 23.98p / 100 Mbps, MP4, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 3840 x 2160 @ 60p / 150 Mbps, MP4, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 3840 x 2160 @ 50p / 150 Mbps, MP4, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 3840 x 2160 @ 30p / 400 Mbps, MP4, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 3840 x 2160 @ 30p / 150 Mbps, MP4, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 3840 x 2160 @ 30p / 100 Mbps, MP4, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 3840 x 2160 @ 30p / 72 Mbps, MP4, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 3840 x 2160 @ 25p / 400 Mbps, MP4, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 3840 x 2160 @ 25p / 150 Mbps, MP4, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 3840 x 2160 @ 25p / 100 Mbps, MP4, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 3840 x 2160 @ 25p / 72 Mbps, MP4, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 3840 x 2160 @ 24p / 400 Mbps, MP4, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 3840 x 2160 @ 24p / 150 Mbps, MP4, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 3840 x 2160 @ 24p / 100 Mbps, MP4, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 3840 x 2160 @ 23.98p / 400 Mbps, MP4, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 3840 x 2160 @ 23.98p / 150 Mbps, MP4, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 3840 x 2160 @ 23.98p / 100 Mbps, MP4, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 3840 x 2160 @ 23.98p / 72 Mbps, MP4, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 1920 x 1080 @ 60p / 200 Mbps, MP4, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 1920 x 1080 @ 60p / 100 Mbps, MP4, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 1920 x 1080 @ 60p / 28 Mbps, MP4, H.264, AAC
  • 1920 x 1080 @ 50p / 200 Mbps, MP4, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 1920 x 1080 @ 50p / 100 Mbps, MP4, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 1920 x 1080 @ 50p / 28 Mbps, MP4, H.264, AAC
  • 1920 x 1080 @ 30p / 200 Mbps, MP4, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 1920 x 1080 @ 30p / 100 Mbps, MP4, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 1920 x 1080 @ 30p / 20 Mbps, MP4, H.264, AAC
  • 1920 x 1080 @ 25p / 200 Mbps, MP4, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 1920 x 1080 @ 25p / 100 Mbps, MP4, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 1920 x 1080 @ 25p / 20 Mbps, MP4, H.264, AAC
  • 1920 x 1080 @ 24p / 200 Mbps, MP4, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 1920 x 1080 @ 24p / 100 Mbps, MP4, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 1920 x 1080 @ 24p / 24 Mbps, MP4, H.264, AAC
  • 1920 x 1080 @ 23.98p / 200 Mbps, MP4, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 1920 x 1080 @ 23.98p / 100 Mbps, MP4, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 1920 x 1080 @ 23.98p / 24 Mbps, MP4, H.264, AAC
  • 1920 x 1080 @ 60p / 28 Mbps, AVCHD, MTS, H.264, Dolby Digital
  • 1920 x 1080 @ 60i / 24 Mbps, AVCHD, MTS, H.264, Dolby Digital
  • 1920 x 1080 @ 60i / 17 Mbps, AVCHD, MTS, H.264, Dolby Digital
  • 1920 x 1080 @ 50p / 28 Mbps, AVCHD, MTS, H.264, Dolby Digital
  • 1920 x 1080 @ 50i / 24 Mbps, AVCHD, MTS, H.264, Dolby Digital
  • 1920 x 1080 @ 50i / 17 Mbps, AVCHD, MTS, H.264, Dolby Digital
  • 1920 x 1080 @ 23.98p / 24 Mbps, AVCHD, MTS, H.264, Dolby Digital
Microphone Stereo
Speaker Mono
Storage
Storage types Dual SD/SDHC/SDXC cards (UHS-II V60 cards supported)
Connectivity
USB USB 3.1 Gen 1(5 GBit/sec)
USB charging No
HDMI Yes (Up to 4:2:2 10-bit output)
Microphone port Yes
Headphone port Yes
Wireless Built-In
Wireless notes 802.11b/g/n + Bluetooth 4.2 LE
Remote control Yes (wired or smartphone)
Physical
Environmentally sealed Yes
Battery Battery Pack
Battery description DMW-BLF19 lithium-ion battery & charger
Battery Life (CIPA) 440
Weight (inc. batteries) 660 g (1.46 lb / 23.28 oz)
Dimensions 139 x 98 x 87 mm (5.47 x 3.86 x 3.43)
Other features
Orientation sensor Yes
Timelapse recording No
GPS None

Articles: Digital Photography Review (dpreview.com)

 
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Report: GoPro has laid off 200-300 more staff from its drone division

06 Jan

Californian action camera manufacturer GoPro has laid off between 200 and 300 staff, according to a report by TechCrunch. The report claims the redundancies have been made in the division of the company that builds it aerial offering—the Karma drone—and that GoPro cited a need to “better align our resources with business requirements” as the reason for the layoffs.

GoPro has suffered in recent times, with its share price taking a hammering and profits showing in negative figures. One of the main reasons for this was the much-anticipated Karma drone, which had to be recalled after it was discovered the battery could shake itself loose, causing the device to lose power mid-flight and plummet back to Earth.

The company claims that, since returning to stores, Karma has been the number 2 best-selling drone priced above $ 1,000 in the US for a period of six months up to September 2017. Even so, it would have faced (and still does) stiff competition from former partner DJI.

GoPro’s November report to shareholders announced increased revenue of $ 300 million, up 37% on the same quarter last year, and a gross margin of 40%. The company was in profit too, making $ 15 million against a loss of $ 104 million in the third quarter of 2016. However, the share price has remained low, with current trading at $ 7.51 against a high of $ 90 in October 2014.

After 370 job cuts in 2016 and early 2017 the company stated that it employed 1,327 people, but that number is now set to drop to close to 1,000, according to the TechCrunch report.

GoPro, which has been operating under the name since 2004, hasn’t commented on the claims, but the job losses have come between the end of the financial year (December 31st) and the company’s annual report, which would seem the logical time to do it.

Articles: Digital Photography Review (dpreview.com)

 
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