Unique Capture and Lighting Integration from Phase One and Profoto

COPENHAGEN and STOCKHOLM, June 17, 2013 — Phase One and Profoto announced that their technical collaboration has produced an unprecedented integration of simultaneous image capture and light control.

Now photographers can link their Profoto studio light to the aperture or ISO settings of their DSLR or medium format camera system. While shooting tethered in Capture One Pro, any changes to the aperture on the camera will cause the light intensity of the studio light to automatically compensate an equivalent f-stop. For example, if the photographer switches from f/8 to f/5.6, the light will drop one f-stop, so that the image is not overexposed. The solution lets photographers easily define which groups of lights should be included in the linking, making it a powerful and flexible work tool.

“Capture One Pro was designed to satisfy the needs of professional photographers,” said Henrik O. Håkonsson, CEO & President, Phase One. “Our collaboration with Profoto and the success of our capture and lighting integrations offer unprecedented lighting control during capture. This solution is especially great for portrait photographers who want to vary their depth of field; they can just turn the aperture dial and the light intensity will follow to ensure the right exposure.”

Anders Hedebark, CEO, Profoto added: “Since our initial capture and lighting integration projects with Phase One, photographers have encouraged us to do more in this area. Capture One Pro is a great platform from which to empower our customers with better tools to manage their professional light gear.”

Two years ago, the companies announced their first image capture and light control integration solution available in Capture One Pro 6. It provided remote access for wireless control of Profoto lighting equipment from within the Capture One application.

Availability and Pricing

The new image capture and lighting integration solution is available now for Mac OS. It requires Capture One Pro 7.1.2 or Capture One DB (digital back) 7.1.2 or later and a Profoto Studio plugin for Capture One. The Capture One software is available from Phase One at http://www.phaseone.com/software or from one of its authorized dealers. The Profoto Studio plugin download is available at http://www.profoto.com/capture-one.

The solution works with all Profoto lights with built-in Air Remote Control. For a list of compatible cameras please refer to: http://www.phaseone.com/camerasupport

Working Together

by Colleen Smith

I sat down last night at a long table in the back of the bar at the beginning of Happy Hour and looked around at the other faces at the table. As soon as another one joined our group there were hugs and handshakes. All 15 of us (there were, unfortunately, a few missing from the festivities) sat down, ordered drinks and food and got the night underway.

There were photographers, producers, studio managers, sales guys, rentals people, all whom I have had the pleasure, the joy of working with over the past 10+ years, and each and every one of them I consider a friend. We get together not as frequently as we would like but when we do the night is full of laughter. We were by far the loudest – and quite possibly the most obnoxious – group in the place. After the initial “how’s work going?” no one talks about his or her day job. This is a night to catch up with old friends and talk of things in common and reminisce. One shared event brought us together, but no one needed to talk about what’s going on in the industry, we all know, we’re all a part of it in one form or another.

 Which brings me to the reason for writing this.

I have worked at three different companies over the last 10 or so years, all (pro) photo retail/rentals related. I have made lasting friendships at each place of employment, people I talk to regularly.

We have all worked I suppose, at “the other guy”, some at Vistek, some at Headshots (and of course B3K Digital), and some at places that no longer exist.

This “competition” is (and I truly believe this) a falsehood, something the higher-ups have pushed and pursued believing they should be the biggest, or only player in the sandbox. Why?

This is a relatively small industry; everyone has worked with, or for, everyone else at one time or another. Why create such a divide? I don’t understand why we can’t work with each other instead of against each other? If I can’t help a photographer with what they need why shouldn’t I pick up the phone and call a friend to see if they can help – or vise versa? Imagine this industry if we did? I’m not saying we need to forget about profit or sales or ROI. But I am saying there is no need to be so protective or so divisive. We all know each other here, wouldn’t it be best to just help out the guy looking for that speedring? Or the producer needing a rental quickly? Why shouldn’t I call the “competition” to find out if they have a lens in rentals and how much it rents for? If I don’t have it for a client I will do what I can to find someone who does. Let’s just all work together to help the photographers, the producers, the studio managers, let’s get them what they need – regardless of where it comes from – so they can get their job done. Isn’t that what it’s all about anyway?

Is this too simplistic a thought? Maybe, but I think simplicity is what we need in an otherwise metamorphic industry.

Working against each other will only quicken the industry’s demise while working together, I’m sure, will only lead to strengthening it.

The New Generation of Conservation

Part two in the series of Conservation and Photography

by Colleen Smith

Renewed emphasis on photography-for-conservation arose at the beginning of the 21st century, primarily in response to human-caused environmental crisis. Photographers recognized that the global pattern of ecosystem degradation was not sustainable.  Modern equipment, attainable travel, the media, and now social media have all helped to bring this new discipline to the forefront of public awareness.

The modern field of conservation photography was formalized in October 2005 with the founding of the International League of Conservation Photographers (iLCP) during the 8th World Wilderness Congress held in Anchorage Alaska.  This new group was established with the basic goal of enlisting the skills and expertise of some of the world’s best photographers to help advance conservation efforts around the globe. Working with scientists, policy makers, governmental leaders, and conservation groups, the iLCP translates conservation science into captivating visual messages. Years of field experience, talent, and a commitment to conserve landscapes, people and wildlife is what sets the photographers of the iLCP apart. The work of conservation photographers covers a vast range of threats to biodiversity. From habitat loss to cultural erosion, from poaching to global warming, conservation photography is indeed a very important component in the conservation toolbox.

“The typical nature photograph shows a butterfly on a pretty flower. The conservation photograph shows the same thing, but with a bulldozer coming at it in the background. This doesn’t mean there’s no room for beautiful pictures, in fact we need beautiful images just as much as the issues. It does mean that the images exist for a reason; to save the Earth while we still can” – acclaimed photographer Joel Sartore, founding Fellow of iLCP

Photography in the Field

Part three in the series of Conservation and Photography

by Colleen Smith

Conservation photographers work with a myriad of groups, from scientists to environmentalists, religious figures to heads of state, all with the common goal of education and awareness. To maximize their effect, conservation photographs are best employed for specific causes. Proper use of these images have the power to bring about positive change.

Jeanette, an Environmental Assessment Coordinator for the Federal Government tells us how important photographs and videos are in increasing awareness to the general public. “Seeing amazing photos of animals or landscapes that people (especially in the city) don’t see every day can really evoke a sense of wonder and a sense that wilderness or wildlife is something valuable to be protected.” But conservation photography doesn’t just deliver the message to the general public, it is also a very useful instrument used by researchers. Photographs of seabird colonies can be used for counting and estimating populations, photographs of banded birds (shot with 600mm super telephoto lenses) allow researchers to read the band numbers from the photo – something that wouldn’t be visible with a set of binoculars. The same is said for videography. For example, video is used to monitor tagged fish that move through a salmon ladder, or video used to track animal movements at a particular location i.e. animal use at eco-passages over highways. Photography and video has never played a more important role in protecting our environment.

 

Shop Local, Support Local

Ok, what gives…

 I’ve spent the past two plus decades supporting and servicing the professional photographer here in Canada. There was a time when our industry had little to no competition, but today, this is not the case.  You can purchase/rent directly off the web, have equipment/product shipped from just about anywhere in the world. Many of you have asked me directly… to better support the industry through a variety of ways, which we’ve endeavored to do (both currently, and in the past). Why then, can someone please tell me, do so many continue to support firms south of the border?

 I think back to the heady days of the 80′s, jobs seemed plentiful and rates high. Today, many of us in the professional imaging industry are pressured by our clients to offer “more for less” – let alone the marketing by major manufacturers implying that “you too, can capture images like the pro”.

 The fact is, this is simply not true. It never was and I would challenge anyone to prove otherwise. Technology is more complex, the software never ending and the knowledge base and support to maintain ones self at a pro level continues to be a challenge.

A good friend and client of mine asked me why I could not compete against American large box resellers, I told him I probably could but chose to be a few dollars higher as I felt knowledge, skill and experience came at a cost (all be it a reasonable one). You can put a face to a name; you have a number to call should something go wrong. Best of all, the men and women right here genuinely care about you and your success!

In turn, he expressed a similar point of view when dealing with his client over contract rates and to his surprise the client agreed to his fee… without the ubiquitous headaches of the past few years.

 This is not a bitch session (though I’m sure some will say otherwise) rather it is a wake up call. Our industry is a symbiotic one, without one another we ultimately all suffer in the long run. Please, think Canadian, support your local lab, printer, retailer, rental house… before you click the enter button on some far away faceless web site.

 Thanks,

Jim

Conservation Photography – A Brief History

Part one in the series of Photography and Conservation.

by Colleen Smith

Conservation and photography appear as two distinct fields, but their combined impact can be profound. Photography has developed as a powerful medium of conservation, since the 1860’s when Carleton Watkins used his persuasive images to successfully encourage the creation of the Yosemite Grant in 1864 – the first instance of park land being set aside for preservation and public use. This in turn led to the creation of Yosemite National Park in 1890.  Armed with a mammoth plate camera that used 18”x22” glass plate negatives, and a stereoscopic camera he traveled to Yosemite and established himself as a master of landscape photography. The 30 mammoth plate and 100 stereoscopic negatives helped influence the US Congress to pass the legislation protecting the Yosemite Valley. Other photographers of the time had similar success in environmental conservation; William Henry Jackson was pivotal as a member of the Hayden Geological Survey of 1871, which led to the creation of Yellowstone National Park. Ansel Adams, best know for the Zone System, was primarily known as an environmentalist first, and a photographer second. Taught to live a life guided by a social responsibility to man and nature, he received his first camera in 1916 (a Kodak Brownie) while visiting Yosemite. He spent that winter learning darkroom techniques, and then returned to Yosemite a year later with a better camera and a tripod. At the age of 17 he joined the Sierra Club – a group dedicated to preserving the natural world’s wonders and resources – and was a life long member, serving on the board of directors for 37 years. “I believe in beauty. I believe in stones in the water, air and soil, people and their future and their fate.” He decided that the purpose of his art, whether photography or music, was to reveal that beauty to others and to inspire them to the same calling.

Upper Falls of the Yellowstone, 115 feet. Photographed by William Henry Jackson.

Yosemite Falls, from the Sentinel Dome, Yosemite Valley, Mariposa Co. Photographed by Carleton Watkins

Sandy and the Animals

One of our favourite photographers, Sandy Nicholson, has been shooting some very cute and cuddly subjects of late. Sandy’s been working on a small book of animals with the resident mammals, lizards, birds, (and others) from Hands on Exotics.

Shooting with a Phase One IQ160 digital back and a selection of lenses, and extension rings, and lit with the Broncolor Scoro A4S & Pulso G heads, Sandy has managed to capture the unique personalities of some very sweet animals.

Meet Penelope the Pig, she can open doors with her nose, likes to sit at your feet during meal time, and is house trained (she also likes to be brushed with a broom)…someone forgot to tell her she’s not a dog!

  

This curious little guy is Doug the chameleon, seems he wants right inside the camera.

…and the opossum goes by the name of Tula.

Take a look at this great video from a previous animal shoot – the flamingo in a duffle bag is particularly cute.

You can see more of Sandy’s work on his website www.sandynicholson.com and read more about the animals, and services of Hands on Exotics here

*all images copyright Sandy Nicholson

Phase One announces new IQ2 Digital Backs

Based on the original IQ series backs, Phase One has just announced the new IQ2 digital backs available in 60 megapixels (IQ260), 80 megapixels (IQ280) and an achromatic IQ260 with 60 megapixels – all with full frame CCD sensors.

The newest versions of the IQ backs boast 16-bit CCD Sensor+ with a whopping 13 stops of dynamic range. The IQ260 can deliver long exposures of up to one hour and produce 60 megapixel captures that are virtually noise free. The Achromatic version offers pure black and white images, no filters or interpolation applied. With no IR cut-off filter mounted on the sensor, the opportunities to create distinct images using a wide array of lens-mounted filters on the market – both artistic and scientific – are endless.

You now have several options for image capture, whether shooting to a memory card, tethered using USB 3.0 or FireWire 800, these backs are designed to give you fast and continuous capture. They now also offer the option to connect your iPad or iPhone wirelessly to an IQ2 digital back. When connected wirelessly, you can control image captures remotely and incoming or stored images can be reviewed and rated.

Just like their predecessors, the new IQ2 backs are built to last, combing functional design with rugged build quality. Made from 100% aircraft grade aluminum with all ports protected with automatic retracting hatches or rubber covers, they’ll work even in the toughest shooting environments.

 You can check out the newest generation of the Phase One backs this month in Montreal (contact Photo Service for details) March 21st, and in Toronto March 22nd , here at B3K Digital.

Hot Docs is 20!

Hot Docs, the Canadian International Documentary Festival is celebrating its 20th year in 2013.

Started in 1993 it was founded by Documentary Organization of Canada as an event for Canadian documentary filmmakers to gather and share their work. The first Hot Docs screened just 21 films and was a mere 4 days long.  In 1996 Hot Docs became a separately incorporated organization wanting to showcase and support Canadian and international documentary filmmakers. They introduce an international program featuring films from Germany, France, and the UK, but it wasn’t until 1999 that they opened their cinematic doors to public screenings of 69 films to an audience of 7000.

Hot Docs is North America’s largest documentary festival, conference, and market.  Last year the festival saw its audience numbers grow to 165,000 people in attendance.  And last March, Hot Docs and Blue Ice Group opened the newly re-christened Bloor Hot Docs Cinema after a much-anticipated revitalization to the historic theatre.

This year’s festival will feature 205 films from 43 different countries. Presented from April 25th to May 5th at 11 different venues across the city.

Have you purchased your tickets yet?