#330. Week-end roundup: Yeats country, droning by numbers, timelapses, an innovative rangefinder and outdated photo ethics

By pascaljappy | News

Feb 28

Hey, it’s that time of whenever again. Time to put your feet up and read nice articles related to photography. Here’s our (insert irregular frequency) pick of the beautiful, the interesting, the ballsy and innovative …


Yeats Country: 17 photos of Sligo and Leitrim that are pure poetry. The title is true. 17 photographs in this porfolio of Sligo and Leitrim, many of which are superb. A nice way of forgetting about it all.


St. Petersburg in the rain. Excellent portfolio by a local that shows how powerful a common idea permeating all your photographs of a location can be. Rain-soaked street photographs that look like impressionist oil paintings. Next time you’re traveling, try to find a theme that could bring some form of unity to all your photographs. Type of light, type of subject, similar time of day, identical lens … Easier said that done, but well worth the effort. Speaking of projects, here’s a beautiful one: Which woman says beauty to YOU? Photographer travels the globe to prove appearance is all in the eye of the beholder. 29 year-old Mihaela Noroc is traveling 37 countries for her Atlas of Beauty project, with female beauty as her common thread.


Drones are all the rage, these days, (rage being the appropriate word for many non-users) and manage to elevate narcissistic tendencies to whole new levels of crapdom : Portable Travel Drones: Forget The Selfie, Welcome To The Dronie. At least, this requires a little bit of skill, I suppose. Tempted ? Worry not, here’s an interesting counterpoint to restore your sanity : Why every traveller wants a drone – not. A note to the reader. I’m being deliberately provocative because friend and co-author Philippe would love to use drone for his photography 🙂 And just to make amends, here’s a reminder of what drones can do in the right hands : Frosty winter morning at Blenheim Palace.

Droned Blenheim - (c) Vertech Imaging - (www.vertechimaging.co.uk)

Droned Blenheim – (c) Vertech Imaging


Interpretation, not imitation, defines the art of photography: You’ll probably not want to spend 24 minutes watching a video is your day is busy. But you’ll probably won’t want to stop once you’ve started this one …

And now, just add 3 more for this breathtaking commercial timelapse work by Rob Whitworth in Dubai and Barcelona: Photographer takes our breath away with time-lapse travel. Simply stunning. Why is it that this ultra-modern work reminds me of Jacques Tati ?

Want more ? OK! How about this: Feast Your Eyes on This Glorious Timelapse Shot in 10K Resolution. This is what happens when a Phase One 80Mpix camera makes a timelapse! According to the author “The h.264 compression really kills a lot of the fine detail.” I wouldn’t have known … While the idea seems a little pointless (to show that medium format has a lot of resolution, duh), the result is still curiously intriguing.


Enough with videos !

HDR is often a good idea gone terribly wrong. Daniel Cheong claims This Is What HDR Photography Should Look Like and I agree. His technique uses labour intensive manual blending rather than the automated tone mapping found in HDR software and it shows. These photographs are superb.


And now, for something completely different.

Konost Full Frame Digital Rangefinder (c) Konost

Konost Full Frame Digital Rangefinder (c) Konost

Meet Konost. This start-up company is thinking out of the box and wants to offer the world an alternative for using M-mount lenses and slow-shoot photography. Built around a 20Mpix CMOSIS sensor, this full frame digital rangefinder does away with the ridiculously expensive, notoriously hard to callibrate and, let’s face it, out-of-epoch mechanical rangefinder found in Leica M cameras while retaining all of the shooting purity and in-control experience. At least, that’s the interesting promise. One to watch closely if you value your collection of Zeiss ZM, Voigtlander and Leica-M lenses. People of Konost, DearSusan wishes you great success!!!


And, to end this round, Debating the Rules and Ethics of Digital Photojournalism. The title says it all, really, but as 20% of finalists of the World Press Photo Contest were disqualified for digitally tampering with their submissions, the real question is “why?”. If the decline of traditional media has tought us something, it’s that anyone can present facts. Journalists are there to summarize, explain, interpret. Why should a photograph have to be untouched to be admissible if it relays a message better with some digital editing ? Are we still clinging to the 19th century illusion that photographs present the truth ? Here’s what one photographer had to say about that.

What is truth? Photography certainly isn’t. Photography is artifice. We can underexpose and overexpose the same image, neither version is “true” or “untrue” — it is just a different interpretation of the world in front of us.

So, in 2015, photographers “were disqualified after technicians compared the entries against the unprocessed RAW files”. In 2015, is photojournalism quality really evaluated on the merit of non-interpretation? Can anyone think of a better definition for pathetic?

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  • David Comdico says:

    Regarding your comment about Photojournalism, invoking Truth is a red herring. That is irrelevant. Besides, contests are petty affairs. But as a consumer of journalism it is indeed very important to me to be aware that imagery, which is presented as an objective description of an event – i.e. news, has been altered to suit a particular ideology. We have become so inured to manipulation being commonplace that we take it for granted – and even react strongly when someone calls foul. To me, it seems the issue is the ego of photographers, who are not content being merely the pushers of a shutter button but instead want to be artistes. Perhaps with enough bandwidth and technology we, as consumers of news, can instead view the raw files ourselves and extract from it the information we need.

    • pascaljappy says:

      David, interesting comment. I’m not sure that journalists can really be considered mere button pushers. Photo journalists of all ages have made conscious decisions about what to frame, how to frame it, how to post-process (and some are indeed prolific artits). And that’s just as important a decision as post-processing. Of course, I’m not referring to obvious manipulation of the truth such as editing out evidence. I’m just saying that post-processing doesn’t make a photograph any more or less real than multiple other choices that happen prior to it (context / no context, depth of field / subject isolation …).

      Anyway, journalism is evolving fast and pros are quickly becoming curators of photos produced by other people, more and more often members of the public. This will prove another significant challenge to contest organisers with mind stuck in the film era.

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