885 The Biggest Misconception in Photography

Chris looks at wind speeds, slow drones, a mini assignment AND you’ll learn that telephoto compression isn’t really a thing.

This week’s assignment is Aperture. Post your photos online and use the hashtags #tfttf #assignment #aperture


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2019/2020 Photo Tours with Chris Marquardt
» Feb 2019: Arctic: Fantastic Fjords Tour 1
» Feb 2019: Arctic: Fantastic Fjords Tour 2
» Jun 2019: Silk Road Kyrgyztan
» Oct 2019: Romaina Fall Colors
» Feb 2020: Lake Baikal, Siberia
» Feb 2020: Lake Baikal, Big Ice Journey
» Mar 2020: Ethiopia, Omo Valley
» Apr 2020: Bhutan, The Untouched East
» Jun 2020: Kyrgyz Republic - Unbelievable Landscapes
» Sep 2020: Cappadocia
» all photo tours

The post 885 The Biggest Misconception in Photography appeared first on PHOTOGRAPHY TIPS FROM THE TOP FLOOR.

Photographer David Burnett with his large-format, wooden camera was the real hero of today’s impeachment hearings

Photographer David Burnett (L), pictured in the press pack at today's first public session of the ongoing impeachment hearings.

As diplomat William Taylor and State Department official George Kent took their seats in the House today to begin their public testimony, their entry was heralded by a noisy fluttering sound, as attendant photographers shot off hundreds of continuous frames on their Canon and Nikon DSLRs. But one man stood alone, among the fray: David Burnett, veteran, multi award-winning photographer, co-founder of ContactPressImages and large format film enthusiast.

The camera is an 'Aero Liberator' – Made by John Minnicks, the Liberator is a custom-made camera, which takes 4 x 5 plates. Judging by today's footage of David using it, continuous shooting speed is limited to about one frame every five or six seconds.

Fujifilm announces upcoming firmware updates for X-T3, X-T30 and other models

Fujifilm has announced plans to release future firmware updates for its X-T3 mirrorless camera. The first update to version 3.10 will arrive in mid-December, according to a release from the company published on Wednesday.

The update scheduled for release in mid-December will bring 'controls for video recording from Gimbal / Drone via USB communications,' according to Fujifilm, meaning X-T3 owners will be able to remotely operate their camera when mounted on a drone and gimbal setup that supports the function. This same functionality will also be released for the X-T30 and other models not specified at this time. Up until now, the cameras have only offered remote video start/stop via the 2.5mm remote socket, rather than offering control over USB.

The firmware version 3.20 update is scheduled for release in January 2020 and will bring 'enhanced autofocus' with better eye AF frame tracking and face-detection performance, as well as improved autofocus when it comes to foreground subjects. Additionally, versiohn 3.20 will add support for saving up to 9,999 images in each folder on the SD card, a dramatic increase from the current 999 limit.

You will soon be able to import into Lightroom on iOS directly from external storage

Adobe has given the public a new sneak peek at a future update for Lightroom on iOS that will simplify the process of importing images into the app. As demonstrated in the above video, Adobe will enable users to directly import images from card readers into Lightroom on iOS, after which point the content is uploaded to the cloud and added to the app's photo library.

The 'seamless importing experience' will arrive in a future Lightroom update starting with iOS 13.2, according to Adobe's Tom Hogarty. The company doesn't provide an exact release date for this update, but says that it will arrive 'soon.'

Fujifilm confirms release date for Neopan 100 ACROS II emulsion for 35mm, 120 formats

In April 2018, Fujifilm announced it was discontinuing its much-loved Acros 100 film stock. Now, more than a year later, Fujifilm has announced that its new Neopan 100 ACROS II film, first teased in June of this year, will start shipping in Japan on November 22, 2019 in 35mm and 120 formats.

According to Fujifilm, the newly developed Neopan 100 ACROS emulsion features the company’s ‘Super Fine particle technology,’ which better retains highlight gradation and improves overall sharpness that ‘emphasizes the contour of the subject.’

Fujifilm hasn’t shared any pricing information, but as noted by Emulsive, Rakuten Japan has both the 35mm and 120 versions listed for 1,045 Japanese yen, which equates to roughly $9.50 a roll.

Press Release (machine-translated):

Black and white film "Neopan 100 ACROS (Across) II

Fujifilm Co., Ltd. (President: Kenji Sukeno) realizes ultra-high image quality with world-class graininess and three-dimensional gradation reproduction, and is suitable for shooting a wide range of fields, and is suitable for photographing a wide range of fields, and is suitable for photography in a wide range of fields, and is used by "Neopan 100 ACROSII" (hereinafter referred to as "Acros II"). will be released in Japan on November 22, 2019. "Across II" will be available in two types: 35mm size and browny size.

The Neopan 100 ACROSII, which will be released this time, uses our unique technologies, including "Super Fine-Particle Technology" As a black and white film with sensitivity ISO100, we have achieved a three-dimensional gradation reproduction that can clearly express the world's highest level of graininess and the tint of the subject, and excellent sharpness. By precisely controlling the structure of the silver halide to form an image by capturing light and making it highly sensitive, and by efficiently placing the photosensitive particles of different sizes in the light receiving layer of the film [...] It is possible to describe finely down to the details of the texture. We respond to the needs of photography in a wide range of fields, from landscape and mountain photography, portraits, product photography, architectural photography, to astronomical and night view photography of long exposure photography.

In the future, we plan to hold events and photo exhibitions where you can experience the charm of "Across II" where you can enjoy deep and quaint expressions. We will also consider overseas sales.

As a leading company in the imaging field, Fujifilm will continue to provide better products and services in response to diversifying customer needs in a wide range of fields, from analog to digital. The power and splendor of a single photograph will be conveyed.

A technology that contributes to high print quality by precisely controlling the size and composition of silver halide particles contained in photographic films, which achieves both sensitivity and excellent graininess.

A layer that is photosensitive to the light entered from the lens during shooting and forms a black-and-white silver image during the development process.


1. Product Name
Neopan 100 ACROSII
35mm size (36 shots) / Brownie size (12 shots)
2. Release Date
November 22, 2019
3. Price
Open price

Features of "Neopan 100 ACROSII"

  • By adopting our proprietary "Super Fine-Particle Technology", we have achieved the world's highest level of graininess as a black and white film with sensitivity ISO100.
  • Compared to our conventional product "Neopan 100 ACROS", the gradation of the highlight part is designed with a sharp, three-dimensional gradation reproduction is possible.
  • The world's highest level of sharpness enables the contours of the subject to be described.

History of the release

We ended sales of black and white film in autumn 2018 due to a decrease in demand for black and white film and difficulty in obtaining raw materials that are essential for production. However, many people who like photography with the unique texture of black and white film have received many voices that want us to continue selling black and white film, so we have been considering re-opening sales from all angles. In addition, we have been able to develop and sell the black and white film "Across II" through research on alternatives to raw materials that have become difficult to obtain and a drastic review of the manufacturing process tailored to new raw materials.

Apple’s new 16-inch MacBook Pro offers options for 8-core processor, 64GB of RAM, 8TB of storage and more

Today, Apple announced its new high-end 16-inch MacBook Pro computer, which serves as a replacement for the current 15-inch MacBook Pro. The larger MacBook Pro can be configured with up to an 8-core Intel i9 processor, maxes out at 64GB of RAM and can be ordered with up to 8TB of internal SSD storage.

In addition to the new 16-inch Retina display (with 500 nights of brightness), a six-speaker sound system, ‘Studio-quality’ microphones and a 100wH battery, Apple has brought back Apple’s scissor-switch Magic Keyboard (and a physical escape key) that uses a custom rubber dome that has 1mm of travel. This update (or reversion, more so) stands as Apple’s recent MacBook Pro units have been plagued with keyboard issues.

While the standard version of the new 16-inch MacBook Pro comes with a 2.6Ghz 6-core Intel i7 processor with Turbo Boost up to 4.5GHZ, you can max out the new MacBook Pros with a 2.4GHz 8-core Intel i9 processor with Turbo Boost up to 5.0GHz.

Apple says a new ‘advanced thermal architecture’ allows the computer to operate on less battery power while still offering more computing power. To achieve this, Apple has increased airflow by 18% and made the heat sink 35% larger compared to the previous-generation MacBook Pro. The extra efficiency combined with the 100Wh lithium-polymer battery offers up to 11 hours of battery life, according to Apple.

The standard model starts at $2,399 and comes with a 2.6GHz 6-core 9th-generation Intel Core i7 processor with Turbo Boost up to 4.5GHz, an AMD Radeon Pro 5300M GPU with 4GB of GDDR6 memory, 16GB 2666MHz DDR4 memory and a 512GB SSD. A maxed-out 16-inch MacBook Pro will cost over $6,000 and offers some unreal specs for a laptop.

The new 16-inch MacBook Pro is available starting today at Apple.com, in Apple Stores and through authorized Apple retailers. As has been the case for a number of years now, the computer is offered in Silver and Space Grey colors.

The Pixel 4 can’t beat a compact camera, but that doesn’t matter

With its newly improved Super Resolution Zoom, the Pixel 4 makes a case for itself as a replacement for a compact camera with a 4-6x zoom range. The kind you might bring on vacation – something with a sensor that's a little bigger and a modest zoom that won't be too cumbersome while you explore your destination.

I took the Pixel 4 as my primary camera on a recent trip, but just to satisfy my curiosity, packed the Canon PowerShot G5 X Mark II alongside it. The Pixel 4 fell short in a couple of ways, but overall it did the job well enough that I wouldn't have regretted taking it as my only camera. Here's what it did well, what the dedicated camera still does best, and why I think those differences don't matter much to most people who take pictures.

A military fort-turned-prison is kind of a weird place to take someone for their birthday, but my fiancé is into that kind of thing. Plus, it was a great excuse to quote Sean Connery saying 'Welcome to the Rock,' for several weeks leading up to the trip. I'd been to Alcatraz before, so I was happy to spend a little more effort and concentration on taking photos.

As you might imagine, a jailhouse provides lots of low light photography opportunities – a task that the Pixel 4 is well equipped for. Night Sight does a little bit of computational magic to create surprisingly detailed images in low light (and good light for that matter). But even the default camera mode does a very nice job in dim conditions, thanks to its ability to capture multiple frames, analyze them and assemble the best bits into one final image on the fly. In fact, it out-performed the Canon G5 X II in the situations where I tested both.

The moderately low light images below show the Pixel 4 producing a slightly more detailed, less noise-smudged image in its standard camera mode versus the Canon G5 X II's out-of-camera JPEG.

Zoom is another story. Google has improved the Super Resolution digital zoom in the Pixel 4, boosting image quality thanks to a combo of clever algorithms and the new telephoto lens. The company claims that the camera will produce decent results up to 6x zoom, but admit that zoom is a difficult problem to solve with the current technology.

Absolutely nobody is claiming that the phone's 4-6x zoomed images can take on a traditional camera's zoom pixel-for-pixel, but because I'm curious I checked it out anyway. Both cameras are at 5x zoom in the example below (about 135mm equiv. for the Pixel 4 and 122mm equiv. on the G5 X II).

The difference is obvious in the 100% crops above, and can be easily seen even at 50% – but then again how often will those photos be viewed on anything bigger than a computer screen? If I planned on making prints of these images, I'd still want a traditional optical zoom. But I rarely print images and I suspect I'm in the majority of the picture-taking public.

There was one more Pixel 4 camera feature that I found myself relying on that the G5 X II doesn't offer: Dual Exposure Controls, which doesn't mean what you think it means.

Dual Exposure Control puts a higher level of control over shadows and brightness, along with the ability to adjust them independently of each other, all before image capture

An advanced compact such as the G5 X II provides plenty of manual controls over exposure settings. What it doesn't provide is the ability to finely tune shadows and brightness before you press the shutter: you can instead select low, medium or high levels of its Auto Lighting Optimizer.

The Pixel 4's Dual Exposure Control gives you direct control over shadows and brightness, along with the ability to adjust them independently of each other, all before image capture. This phone and previous Google devices would do this automatically expose for backlit subjects and high-contrast scenes, but the dual controls allow you to increase or minimize the effect, depending on what you want.

The Pixel 4's Dual Exposure Controls allowed me to slightly boost shadows in this image before pressing the shutter.

Of course the G5 X II offers plenty of editing flexibility with in-camera Raw processing, but control over settings is limited. For anything more advanced than some basic tweaks, you'll need to take your Raw images into Lightroom or the like. On the Pixel 4, it all happens in-camera.

This potentially changes how you approach a high-contrast scene. Normally I'd expose for the highlights and bring up the shadows later, which works well but leaves me without an image to share now. This is annoying because social media has robbed me of any patience I once had. The Pixel 4 lets me make those adjustments before I take the photo – rather than having to wait until I can process the image later.

If I was keeping score, I could award a lot more points in favor of either device. Color science backed by decades of fine tuning, better picture-taking ergonomics, flip-out touchscreen for low angle shots: all points for the traditional camera. Integrated photo storage, seamless image sharing, always in your pocket: point, point, point for the Pixel 4.

What speaks louder than any arbitrary score-keeping though is the fact that I saw few, if any, compact cameras among my fellow tourists at Alcatraz. I saw mirrorless cameras, DSLRs, a few superzoom cameras and of course, lots of phones. To most of the photo-taking population though, the compact camera – even a really nice compact camera – is already history.

DPReview TV: Did Panasonic just turn the G9 into a GH5?

Last week Panasonic announced a major firmware update for the G9, adding video features once exclusive to the GH5 series. Does Chris love the autofocus? Can Jordan replace his beloved GH5s? Tune in to find out.

Subscribe to our YouTube channel to get new episodes of DPReview TV every week.

Gifts for the smartphone photographer 2019

Gifts for the smartphone photographer 2019

Smartphones are highly capable cameras on their own, but like all imaging devices they have their limitations. In this guide, we've rounded up some accessories and gadgets that will help the smartphone photographer in your life open up new creative possibilities and get the most out of their device.

Moment Photo Case and Minimalist Wrist Strap

shopmoment.com | $55

Camera wrist straps don't get the credit they deserve – they're easy to throw on everything from compact cameras to small mirrorless models, and provide that extra bit of security. The folks at Moment haven't forgotten about the humble wrist strap, and they've adapted it for use with smartphones.

Their wrist straps (we like the cheerful-looking Minimalist Strap) attach to the bottom of the Photo Case, providing a safeguard against accidental drops. It's cheaper than fixing a cracked screen – just be sure to pick up the right phone case along with the strap.

Instax Share SP-2 instant printer

instaxus.com | $85

The Instax SP-2 was introduced years ago but we still think it's the best instant printer on the market. It prints photos wirelessly from your phone to widely available Instax mini film, is easy to use and produces rich colors. It's not exactly cheap enough to be a stocking stuffer, but we think it's a must-have for just about any photographer who gets a thrill from instant prints.

Jackery Bolt Portable Power Bank

jackery.com | $36

The most sophisticated smartphone camera in the world is useless with a dead battery. A dependable backup can be a lifesaver, especially for those relying on their smartphone as their sole camera. The Jackery Bolt gets good reviews on the web, and our positive experience with Jackery battery packs means we feel confident recommending this one. The 6000mAh will do the trick, but a serious power user might want the added capacity of the 10050mAh model.

Joby Gorillapod

joby.com | $30

Part of a smartphone's appeal as a camera is its portability, so any accessories for phone photography should likewise be compact and lightweight. Joby's Gorillapod is a great option that genuinely opens up new creative opportunities for timelapse or night sky photography that aren't possible when shooting handheld. The starter kit includes a clamp that fits smartphones of any size.

Røde VideoMic Me-L

røde.com | $80

Most current smartphones capture great-looking video, but audio? Not so much. The Rode VideoMic Me-L is a directional microphone for iPhones and iPads with a built-in Lightning connector. A directional mic helps capture better audio from a particular subject while minimizing ambient sounds, so it's ideal for someone shooting interviews with their phone.

How to Plan the Perfect Landscape Photo

The post How to Plan the Perfect Landscape Photo appeared first on Digital Photography School. It was authored by Simon Bond.



The best photography comes from having a plan. That’s especially the case when it comes to landscape photography. In this article, you’ll learn the practical steps you can take ahead of time so you can get the best possible results. Follow these steps to plan the perfect landscape photo, and you’ll get amazing results every time.


This photo needs the seasonal salt marsh plants to give it that extra punch.

Know where the perfect landscape photo is

The first step is finding a great location to photograph. If that’s in your local area, you’ll almost certainly know where the local money shots are. What if you’re traveling to somewhere new, though? Well, there are several things you can do before you visit, which will give you a head start. It is good planning to make a list of photos you wish to take ahead of time. To do that, look to do the following:

  • Choose a location – The first step is going to be choosing a location. Keep this to a defined area like one city, or a national park. If the country is small like perhaps Iceland, you can look to that as your location.
  • Famous landmarks – Now within that location, start looking for the standout places that people visit, not just for photography, but because they’re amazing. Make a list of these places, and choose which ones you would like to photograph.
  • Other photos – Now it’s time to search online for inspiration from other photographers. This may lead you to replicate one of these photos. If you’re concerned about this then avoid this step, and go to the location with a clear mind about how you will take your photo. Sites like 500px, Instagram and Flickr can be good resources for this step.
Image: If the location is far from where you live, ask people who have visited there before for thei...

If the location is far from where you live, ask people who have visited there before for their advice.

Visit the location ahead of time

Where possible the next step for you to plan the perfect landscape photo is to visit the location before you photograph it. There are three possible ways you can go about doing this. Each has its drawbacks, but if you can, then this step will help a lot.

  • Day trip – If your location is nearby, you could make a day trip without your camera. This is aimed at getting you that vital on-the-ground information.
  • Arrive early – A lot of landscape photos are sunsets. Arrive several hours before sunset to thoroughly explore the area for the best location to get a good composition. Taking a sunrise photo? Then arrive the evening before so you can see the location while it’s still light ahead of your photo the next day.
  • Online maps – Should the location be an airplane ride away, the only way of visiting the location early is online. While you won’t get all the information, using services like Google maps street view can allow you to explore a location remotely ahead of time.
Image: This photo is of the new skyscraper in Bangkok, the Mahanakhon.

This photo is of the new skyscraper in Bangkok, the Mahanakhon.

Sunrise or sunset?

A lot of landscape photos will be either sunrise or sunset locations. Make sure you know where these are ahead of time.

You’ll need to work out your route from where you’re staying to these locations. You also need to arrive around one hour before sunrise or sunset happens. With sunset or sunrise skies comes big differences in the dynamic range. Make sure you’re familiar with techniques like bracketing and digital blending before you go out to take these photos.

Finally, don’t always photograph towards the sun, turn around and look for the golden light and see if that makes a good photo as well.

Image: One of my friends is a Balloonist who has, on occasion, taken me for a balloon ride.

One of my friends is a Balloonist who has, on occasion, taken me for a balloon ride.

Contact a fixer to plan the perfect landscape photo

There are lots of situations in photography where you will need a fixer. A fixer is someone who helps you facilitate the photograph you want to take. This fixer could take several forms depending on the situation or location you want to photograph. These are a few examples of fixers that you could need to deal with.

  • Security guard – A lot of cityscape photos are taken from the rooftop of tall buildings. Contacting the security of that building to ask for permission ahead of time is a good idea.
  • Restaurant or bar manager – There are some restaurants that have amazing viewpoints. Some of these will allow you to photograph from their premises. Once again, you need to contact them ahead of time to arrange this.
  • Photographer – Contacting local photographers to ask them for information is a great idea. If you’re lucky enough to find someone who will show you the local places to photograph, be sure to return the favor when you have the chance.
  • Tourist company – In some cases, joining a tour can get you to a location you want to photograph but otherwise could not reach. For example, if you want to take an aerial photo of a location, one solution is booking a balloon or helicopter ride! Remember, not everywhere will allow you to fly a drone.

This photo required a longer focal length to compress the scene.

Bring the right equipment

Make sure you have the right equipment with you to get the photo you want. The list below is a suggested packing list for landscape photographers. The location you’re photographing from will have a big bearing on which items from the list below you actually take.

  • Tripod – A tripod is essential for all landscape photographers, whatever the conditions. Getting sharp images is important, and you’ll get this when using a tripod.
  • Camera body – The newest camera body may not be as important for daytime landscapes, but if you’re photographing the Milkyway, having a new camera body is invaluable.
  • Lens – If you have researched your location properly, you’ll know whether the primary photo you intend to take requires a wide-angle or telephoto focal length. There is nothing worse than getting a location and realizing your lens doesn’t allow you to compose the photo the way you wish.
  • Remote trigger – A remote trigger or perhaps a cable release will mean you don’t need to touch the camera on the tripod. This will remove the chance of camera shake.
  • Filters – These are always worth packing as they take up minimal space. Neutral density filters are great for long exposure work, and graduated neutral density filters are also nice to have. A circular polarizing filter should be packed to give your photo more punch. Looking for a little creativity? How about packing an infra-red filter?
  • Other equipment – Looking to make a landscape that’s a little different? A lensball allows you to capture the scene in front of you in a unique way. It’s like having an external lens. How about light painting? You’ll need to bring things like a torch or an LED light stick for this.
Image: Filters are a vital piece of equipment for all landscape photographers.

Filters are a vital piece of equipment for all landscape photographers.

Know the local conditions ahead of time

Finally, make sure you’re checking the weather ahead of time. If your schedule is flexible enough, check the 5-day forecast and choose a day that works best for the sky. The long-range forecast can’t always be relied on though, so also be prepared to drop everything on the day if the right conditions develop for your photo.


Of course, this means using a reliable weather service or app on your phone. There are several of these out there. The recommended ones are windy.com and wunderground.com. These sites give good forecasts, though it’s worth checking them as you get nearer the intended day of your photo as they are updating their information. Then on the day itself, you can check their satellite images for up-to-the-minute information. These satellite images give information on current positions of clouds or any rain.

The sun

Another factor to consider is the sun, and that’s not whether it’s a sunny day or not. The sun’s position in the sky changes throughout the year. That means you can plan your trip to coincide with when the sun will be in the best position in the sky for your photo. To get this information use suncalc.org or the photopills app for your smartphone.


Seasonal changes to the landscape can make a dramatic difference as well. Plan for when there will be spring or fall foliage you can make use of. In the winter, the snow can also be pretty.

Tide times

Those of you doing any photography along the coast will need to know the tide times. The landscape scene along a coast can change dramatically depending on whether it’s high or low tide. Again, tide times change throughout the year, so you should be able to plan your trip so that the level of the tide is perfect for your photo.

It’s also important to know from a safety perspective. If you can only access your location at low tide, you need to know how long you can safely photograph from that low tide position.

How do you plan the perfect landscape photo?

Having read this article, you’ll have a better feel for how to plan your landscape photo.

Which of the above steps will you put into your planning phase? Are there things you do when you plan your landscape photos that were not included here?

We’d love you hear your thoughts and ideas in the comments section of this article. Then, once you have taken your landscape photo, you can share it in the comments section.

So now it’s time to start planning, and taking better landscape photos!



The post How to Plan the Perfect Landscape Photo appeared first on Digital Photography School. It was authored by Simon Bond.

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