Posted by: David Vernon | October 22, 2009

My “Vacation” Means a Linkfest is Coming


You take a few days off from the blog and you expect maybe all photo bloggers would have the same courtesy – so you don’t fall SO far behind. Yeah – not so much. Thanks McNally, LaForet, duChemin, and the rest – you’re all killin’ me. Let’s get this show on the road. You’ve peed right? This may take a while. (Nice – I know).

§ Let’s start with duChemin – the dude has been busy. Besides the fact that he has a new book coming out in November (called VisionMongers – Making a Life and a Living in Photography – a follow-up to the pretty darn wonderful “Within the Frame”), he’s also been prolific with the eBooks lately. All three of his pretty worthy eBooks are for sale in his bookstore – and for very reasonable prices. And while you’re there consider Within the Frame. Speaking of books, David also had a pretty outstanding list of books that every photographer should read that he posted a few days back. Less about photographic technique as a body – and more about vision and seeing. I’m thrilled to have read four of the books – and Patterson’s “Photography and the Art of Seeing” is high on the list of things to get too.

§ And even though duChemin tells us that gear is only good and vision is better – we’re all on board that gear is still essentially… good. Don Giannatti, the madcap genius behind the wonderful lighting website Lighting Essentials put up a lovely little post a few days ago about what gear he is in love with. I can speak to the Honl gear – it’s good stuff. And I’m thinking the Kacey Beauty Dish is near the top of my shopping list. Don’t tell my wife – but I NEED that Beauty Dish.

§ Bill DeKay, a photojournalist up in the Great White North, has started a photo blog dedicated to Canadian agriculture. And while you may think so what I would say to you this: Have you been on a drive outside of the city lately. Have you seen all the freakn’ agriculture right here in Illinois? It’s nice to get a similar and yet different perspective. I do a lot of ag shooting so even if you guys don’t care – I’m ALL OVER IT!

§ McNally. Gotta link to a little McNally. Leave it to a guy like Joe – who I admire more then just a little bit as a photographer to aspire to – to tell us how badly he sucks. Even more interesting I guess is his message that we all suck but that’s cool because we all want to get a lot better. Joe spent a week sucking under the care of one of the true legends – Jay Maisel. Joe spent a few days at a Maisel workshop in New York and he struggled to get better. And – to our benefit – he blogged all about it. Go over and sympathize with him.

§ Been a little hesitant to make the jump to Lightroom like me (I’m a Bridge/Photoshop guy – what can I say)? Well – don’t be a coward like me – but make the jump and do it with your eyes open. This little entry over on the Photofocus blog – written by Rob Sylvan – gives you the list of 10 Things I Wish I Could Tell Every New Lightroom User. A useful list this – a little hand-holding before you make the jump is a good thing.

§ As a Photoshop guy – and as a human being that abhors artificial things in my natural pictures – I’m intrigued by some news coming out of Adobe Labs – the folks who are working on Photoshop about three versions down the road. If you’ve ever tried to touch a wire out of a shot – of something slightly complicated – you wish that Photoshop simply did it better. Coming down the pike – context-sensitive healing. And this demo version – over on Facebook – but probably findable elsewhere – looks heavenly.

§ The new shows at the Peoria Art Guild – featuring a lot of different Central Illinois photographers is excellent. I spent a few minutes with Doug and Eileen Leunig at the opening last Friday and I got some advance notice of what will be a very slick show the Leunigs are putting on at the Picture This Gallery in Peoria Heights. Entitled “Gathering Light – Light Paintings by the Leunigs”, the show will feature Central Illinois landmarks in a very different and stunning way. I’m looking forward to it – at Picture This November 2 – December 15 – with a reception on November 13 from 6-8pm.

§ I’ll leave you with this. Canon is set to introduce the EOS 1D Mark IV camera any day now. It is part of their top of the line pro gear and will be one of their two flagship pro cameras (along with the current 1Ds Mark III). Like the recently introduced Nikon D3s, this new camera will do amazing – no mindblowingly amazing – work in low light. And like the D3s – it will do it in HD video. Vincent LaForet – as he did when the 5D Mark II came out – got his hands on a preproduction model and made a film. Called Nocturne, it was shot in two days in Los Angeles. At night. In available light. At ISO 6,400. And it is gorgeous. OMG gorgeous. Here’s the catch. For some unfathomable and at least yet unexplained reason, Canon had LaForet take the video down (it was here on Smugmug – not so much now). Vincent muses on about it a little – and I’m sure it will be back soon – but it was gorgeous. [Ed: In fact after I wrote this post – and before I posted it – I found the vid on You Tube so it’s embedded below.] Interestingly, John Harrington has a pretty good guess as to why the video was taken down. And it brings up another blog you Canon lovers should love. IF you don’t know who Chuck Westfall is – this blog won’t help – but it will still entertain. Chuck – in reality – is the manager of the Camera Divison Technical Information Dept. of Canon U.S.A. So an important guy in the Canon hierarchy. The awesomely snarky (and full of swear words) Fake Chuck Westfall blog – on the other hand – lives to constructively criticize (okay – maybe just criticize – perhaps it was the biting satire that gave it away) the powers that be at Canon for missteps any big company is going to make. The fact that Canon has gone to court to try and get this blog killed – and the fact that they have not succeeded – makes it even jucier. Oh yeah. Now who’s going to start a Nikon equivalent?

And the aforementioned YouTube version of Nocturne:


  1. “I NEED that Beauty Dish”

    I could see where that may improve your selfies, but, I’m not sure a couple hundred $$ worth of gear is the right approach. I mean, there’s only so far it’ll take you. A free paper bag, on the other hand…. 😉

    In all honesty, though, my untrained eye has a really hard time seeing the difference in what a beauty dish accomplishes as opposed to other light modifiers. Others seem to ‘get it’, but I sure don’t.

  2. […] What is it and When you Should Consider it?” And if you get far enough, just like we did with Scott Bourne and Rob Sylvan a few weeks ago, we now present Scott Kelby’s “10 Things I Would Tell New Lightroom Users.” […]

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