You have to think that if he were alive today, he’d find all the fuss hilarious, just the sort of cockamamie deal the hoity-toity uptown swells would come up with. Yeah, a museum show and art book, sure sweetie, just give us a smile and show us a little leg.
The private lives of Presidents and their families are always of interest to the public, and photographs from behind closed doors or in rare private moments are newsworthy and interesting because, for a moment, they make those people at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue more like the rest of us.
Shoot with a camera, not with a gun, nature photographers have always believed. But is this advice any good in the fight against crime? Barb Nugent says yes. She and her fellow Cleveland resident, Betty Kemper, teamed up to fight the disintegration of the neighborhood where Barb lives and Betty owns property.
John E. Hanson’s submission to the “1997 Great Picture Contest” was jinxed from the start. Hanson, from Windsor, California, sent his contest photos via Federal Express, not realizing FedEx couldn’t deliver to a Post Office box (our mailing address for the contest).
When last seen in August’s “Snapshots,” [page 101] the prototype Alpa medium-format camera was hidden and trussed in a roped burlap bag, looking much like an Egyptian mummy. The wraps, as they say, are off, and the naked Alpa prototype has emerged, polished wooden sides and all.
Camera makers tout new features but never tell you what’s been left out. Reading a multipage, no-holds-barred, gloriously illustrated brochure for a new SLR sometimes seems almost as satisfying as owning the camera itself. The display pictures exploring the seemingly infinite possibilities the camera offers bring tears of joy, a quickening of breath and, admittedly, a yen to own, cherish, and adore the camera like a fine jewel, even though you may never use half its documented features or shoot pictures one-tenth as good as those shown in the brochure.
CAN KODAK E200 REALLY BE SHOT AT ISO 1000, AND STILL LOOK GREAT?
FILM SHOT AT ISO 200, NORMAL PROCESSING
FILM SHOT AT ISO 640, TWO-STOP PUSH PROCESSING
FILM SHOT AT ISO 1000, THREE-STOP PUSH PROCESSING
RESOLUTION AND GRAIN COMPARISON, 30X MAGNIFICATION
ISO 1000, and push 3 stops?
GRAIN COMPARISON—NORMAL AND THREE-STOP PUSH
Michael J. McNamara
Until now, slide films have always provided notoriously narrow exposure latitude and required special push or pull processing to get more than a stop or two exposure leeway without contrast and color shifts. (With push processing, color developer time is increased to compensate for exposures made at higher-than-marked ISO settings; pull processing is the reverse.)
Part of getting great travel photos is the preparation, so the Hollenbecks give practical info on such things as researching photo opportunities, packing, travel safety, and planning a daily shooting schedule. The book is full of suggestions for finding and shooting subjects wherever you are, including extraordinary environments—aerial, underwater, winter, and tropical.
IS THE PENTAX ZX-M A REAL SUCCESSOR TO THE K1000???
Photography students, beginners, and lovers of the nononsense, make-it-like-ahockey-puck school of SLR camera design — you can all relax. The late and much lamented ancient Volkswagen of all SLRs, the Pentax Kl000, a victim of the rising manufacturing costs of all mechanical cameras as well as the lack of parts to make the camera beetle go, has been replaced.
How serious enthusiasts integrate photography into their lives.
REDPATH AT A GLANCE
Toddler portrait secrets
Lending a colorful hand
For POPULAR PHOTOGRAPHY reader Sigrid Redpath, life has always had two sides. One is rational, technical, and precise. The other is artistic, sensual, and aesthetic. Using her rational side, Redpath developed the sharp powers of analysis, clear thinking, and advanced language skills that carried her through nursing school and into a highly demanding position in the neonatal intensive care unit of a Minneapolis hospital.
When I submit my slides to my local lab to have prints made, I label them with my copyright stamp in order to have my name and address on them in the event they are lost. The lab refuses to make prints for me with the copyright information on the slides.
First Medium-Format Autofocus SLR: How Practical Is It?
Why no autofocus medium-format SLRs when AF completely dominates the 35mm SLR arena? Explanations— or are they excuses?—exist: the limited total number of medium-format SLRs makes producing an AF system impractical; the bigger-sized lenses would be slow to autofocus; AF isn’t needed because the larger format size provides such an easy-tofocus viewing screen; advanced amateurs and professionals don’t want an amateurish feature such as autofocus.
The 64 winning pictures on the following pages were selected from over 60,000 photos submitted by more than 10,000 entrants in our latest Great Picture Contest. This year for the first time, our Grand Prize Winner is a computer-enhanced image, our most rapidly growing category, both in the quality and number of entries.
A New York minute? This remarkable image took weeks of work. On a rainy morning, Richard M. Swiatlowski drove through Times Square; while idling in traffic, he took pictures with a Canon EOS-1 and 28—70mm f/2.8 Tokina lens using Kodak Gold 400 film.
Hands on: A little larger than average for this class, and about average weight, it balances well on larger EOS cameras. Excellent satin-black finish. Ribbed, rubberized focusing and zooming rings provide very good grip. Windowed white-on-black meter markings are very legible; smaller green footage scale less so.
Hands on: Typical Sigma black Zen-finished barrel with smooth operating, easyto-grip rubberized zoom ring and generouswidth, all-metal inverted slit-faced manual focusing ring, also easy and smooth turning, but slightly harder to grip. Large white marked figures. Amazingly light and small for its aperture range, but sufficiently sturdy, accomplished by redesigning earlier 28-105mm f/4.5-5.6 lens, using more polycarbonate interior parts and 12 elements including a rear aspheric instead of the slower lens’s 15.
Think the red-coated darling on our January ’48 cover is sweet? You’re right—she’s Cathie Sweet, kid sister of New York pro O.C. Sweet, who took the shot with a flash-equipped 4x5 Speed Graphic, Ansco Color film, at 1/100 sec and f/11. Aside from a few ads, there was no color in this issue.
James D. Phelan Award in Photography Exhibition; through Jan. 31. SF Camerawork, 115 Natoma St., San Francisco, CA 94105, 415-357-4000. Cindy Sherman: Retrospective; through Feb. 1. Catherine Opie; through Feb. 8. The Museum of Contemporary Art at California Plaza, 250 Grand Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90012, 213-621-2766.
Pinhole cameras make intriguing, somewhat diffused images, with great depth of field. If you’ve wondered how to make these images, you’ll be fascinated by this book. Not only will you learn how to construct such a camera, you’ll find a thorough history of lensless cameras, going back to the pinhole’s predecessor, the camera obscura.
Instead of putting your camera or flash on “Program,” get the most out of it by learning from the pros—on tape! Nikon’s series of videotapes will show you “How to Get the Most from Your N50” or, in nine other tapes, the N70, N90, N90s, N6006, N8008S, or F4 camera, or the SB-24, -25, or -26 Speedlight. While the tapes can’t address all your questions, they do a good job of showing you how to use the main features and accessories.
We photographers love National Geographic magazines so much, we can’t bring ourselves to throw ’em out. Result? Stacks of the yellow-covered treasures. Now, for National Geo fans with computers comes a way to free up some attic space: Mindscape and Kodak have put all 108 years of National Geographic magazine on CD-ROM disks for under $200. On 30 CDs, you’ll find all the pictures, text, page maps, even vintage advertisements from over 1,200 issues and 9,000 articles. You can search the entire collection by date, subject, cover, photos, personalities, places, and more. And with every inquiry, the program’s search engine also produces a list of related articles. It’s practically like going on a safari yourself! (Mindscape, 800-234-3088.)
Playing back an 8mm videotape no longer means cords running from camcorder to TV set. Seven of Sony’s new camcorders incorporate a system called LaserLink. Aim the camcorder at a TV, press playback, and whatever is recorded will appear on the TV screen, with virtually no loss of quality. The magical link is an infrared wireless transmitter: it sends the signal to a small receiver ($80) that you connect to your TV or VCR. Sony’s Hi8 TRV62 also has a 30X zoom lens, SteadyShot image stabilization, and the AccuPower system that indicates to the minute how much battery time is left. (Sony Electronics Inc., One Sony Dr., Park Ridge, NJ 07656.)
Saunders is offering a heavy-duty, four-bladed 11x14 darkroom easel that it claims has everything you would want—except the weight. The new SlimTrack enlarging easel uses the same frame design found in Saunders’ V-Track 11x14 easel, a design that’s claimed to assure perfect alignment between easel blades. The eight-pound SlimTrack, however, weighs six pounds less than the V-Track, has smaller blades, a smaller footprint for easier storage and, at $219.95, a significantly smaller list price. Besides being petite, SlimTrack is fully calibrated, has a heavy rubber base pad, and the same non-reflective “Focal Yellow” surface of other Saunders’ easels. (The Saunders Group, 21 Jet View Dr., Rochester, NY 14624.)
Calumet’s Cadet view camera delivers the swings, tilts, and oversize format typical of 4x5 cameras, but at a point-and-shoot-sized price. Relatively lightweight (4.8 lbs), easy to use, and inexpensive ($399.95), the Cadet is an L-frame monorail camera with calibrated and click-stopped detents, a reversible ground glass focusing back for quickly changing horizontal/vertical orientation, and accessory rollfilm holders for 6x7-, 6x9- and 6x12cm formats. Its fixed, pleated bellows permits focal lengths from 75mm wide to 305mm long. And if 75mm isn’t wide enough, the Cadet also comes in a wide-angle version ($479.95) that gets you out to 47mm. Lens, lensboards, and film holders are extra; other accessories include a self-supporting lenshood, Polaroid backs, carrying case, and more. (Calumet, 890 Supreme Dr., Bensenville, IL 60106; 800-225-8638.)
Digital photographers who present photos on CD-ROM disks can now do it with extra polish thanks to the CD-Folio. Made of handcrafted leather, the CD-Folio from General Products is like a classic photo album, only smaller. It comes in two versions: one holds the Photo CD disk and its entire plastic case (a.k.a. the jewel box); the second, sleeker version holds the disk sans case. Both versions have windows with goldembossed frames into which you slide the disk’s index print. The all-leather CD Folios ($7.50 plus shipping and handling) are available in a variety of colors and, for all you weekend wedding warriors, their covers can be imprinted to read “Wedding Memories” or “Our Wedding.” (General Products, 800888-1934.)
We’ve seen tripods, treepods, duopods, and monopods, why not a ClampPod? The newest one from Slik ($25) is a foot-long gooseneck of flexible steel with a ¼-20 bolt at one end and a rubber-jawed squeeze clamp at the other. Designed to steady a camera above a car window, fence post, or other unmoving contrivance (no wider than two inches, please), the 9.6-oz ClampPod allows for easy camera positioning with the combined flexibility of a gooseneck and a locking ball-joint-type swivel head that’s built into the base of the ¼-20 connection (arrow). For added use, the unit has a keyway slot that lets you wall-hang the ClampPod from a nail or screw. (Tocad America Inc., 201-428-9800.)
You can make instant prints from slides using several systems, but few offer the convenience of the new Daylab Jr. from Polaroid. First, with a footprint of 8x8.5 inches, it’s a fraction of the size of the Daylab II, its big brother. Second, and more importantly, because it lets you fine tune color balance as well as exposure, the Daylab Jr. ($129) offers unusual flexibility for producing the peel-apart 3¼ x 4¼ - inch instant prints used for image and emulsion transfers, two arty alternative imaging processes now in vogue. Of course, using Polaroid Type 665, you can also use the Daylab Jr. to produce internegatives from 35mm slides. (Polaroid Corp., 575 Technology Square, Cambridge, MA 02139; 800-552-0711.)
From Germany come two new Multibiitz monolights that are tiny and bright. The Profilite Compact 200’s 200 watt-second (Ws) output is continuously variable across a four-stop range with a 60-watt halogen modeling light that delivers proportional output. The Profilite 200 features a 1.9-sec recycle time and, at only 2.6 lbs, it’s barely heavier than an on-camera flash. The Profilite 400 is similar in most respects, except it includes a cooling fan and a 400 Ws output. Both lights have IR slave cells for remote firing and both are claimed to be the smallest monolights in their power classes. Pricing? The 200 lists for $454 and the 400 for $729. (R.T.S., 40-11 Burt Dr., Deer Park, NY 11729.)
If you love Konica’s Hexar 35mm compact, here’s a posh point-and-shoot you’ll love twice as much: the RBT 3-D S1, a fully-automated 35mm 3D camera made up of two Hexars linked together Siamese-twin style. Producing 15 stereo pairs per 36-exposure roll, the 8-inch-long RBT S1 ($2,900) weighs 28.3 oz and features autoor manualfocus, autoor manual-exposure control, a “silent” motor-drive mode, and two (count ’em) 35mm f/2.0 Hexar lenses. The camera’s viewfinder sports auto parallax correction, focusOK, and focus and exposure alerts. And there’s an optional viewfinder spirit level. Want more? The camera also comes in a version for underwater 3D photography that features a narrower stereo base (45mm between lenses instead of 59mm). (3-D Concepts, Box 205, Waban, MA 02168; e-mail: email@example.com.)
Have you wanted a photo studio and darkroom, but lacked the space? Meet the Zig. Made of stainless steel, aluminum, and other galvanized metals, the Zig combines a studio and darkroom into one shiny, desk-sized unit. Available in three customized versions, each can hold everything you need to do 1) tabletop photography (including lighting supports and provision for up to eight different rolls of background paper), 2) process film, 3) edit film (on a builtin light table), and 4) make prints using the system’s built-in enlarging table, processing trays, sink(!), and print washer. From the smallest of the three Zigs, you can produce prints up to 20x24 inches in size. Pricing? Depends on how your Zig is configured, but it ain’t cheap. (ZiggyZig Photographic Studio Systems, 51 Lispenard St., New York, NY 10013.)
S1 Vectis APS SLR
When is a camera case not a camera case? When it’s the Camera Guard SG-S1 that Minolta makes for its S1 Vectis APS SLR. Like a rollbar protects a race car, the SG-S1—a tubular frame made of heavy-duty aluminum — clamps around the Vectis S1, protecting it from bumps and scratches. The $110 unit’s rubberized corners may even help insulate the camera in the event of a small drop. Unlike most camera cases, the Guard gives you full access to the camera, its controls and viewfinder, so you can shoot and protect at the same time. It may not fit all Vectis lenses, however, so check before you buy. (Minolta Corp., 101 Williams Dr., Ramsey, NJ 07446.)
New lines of camera bags come from Case Logic, the company that specializes in carryalls for audio and computer products. The new bags tote pointand-shoots, SLRs, and video systems, and each is covered by a lifetime warranty. The top-of-the-line CBV-12 (shown) is made of durable nylon and features pullover security flaps with snaps, a waterproofed bottom with feet, and nylon mesh pockets for film or batteries. Prices range from $20 to $50. (Case Logic, 6303 Dry Creek Pkwy., Longmont, CO 80503.)
Epoque's ET-100 Plus
Epoque's ET-100 Plus ($272.50) underwater camera is claimed to deliver excellent deep-sea results thanks to a relatively fast, fixed-focus 45mm f/3.5 lens, a built-in flash that's good to 6.5 feet underwater, plus special waterproofing and a body of ABS plastic that lets you take the camera down to 150 feet. With a built-in motor drive, automated exposure (including DX coding and aperture-priority operation), and three different color schemes, the camera should work pretty well topside, too. Powered by two AA’s, the Epoque ET-100 Plus comes with a carrying strap, and features a framing sportsfinder and soft carrying case as accessories. (Charles Beseler Co., 1600 Lower Rd., Linden, NJ 07036.)
Nikon has expanded its well-known trio of closeup lenses to a quartet with the first Micro Nikkor zoom: the 2.6X 70-180mm f/4.5-5.6D Micro Nikkor AF ($1,380). Its 1:1.32 magnification ratio (at 180mm) brings you to within threequarters life size. Get to 1:1 by adding Nikon’s 6T Close-up lens (filter size: 62 mm). The lens’s close-focus distance, 14.5 inches, holds throughout the zoom range, which will be helpful in composing closeups. Also, unlike some other macro lenses, this 34.6ounce, 6.6-inch-long Micro Nikkor requires no bellows-factor adjustment as you focus in; the effective aperture remains constant across the focusing range. Studio photographers and others who don’t use TTL metering will benefit. (Nikon Inc., 1300 Walt Whitman Rd., Melville, NY 11747.)
If you’ve admired the way pro photographers finish some of their prints via lamination, here’s a chance to try it yourself. The Xyron 850 cold lamination system ($199) will apply several laminating surfaces to protect prints up to 8.5 inches wide from water, fingerprints, abrasion, and more. It will also apply adhesive backing to prints for mounting on foam core, mat board, or other vehicles. You can even laminate one side of a print while applying adhesive to the other. The system is particularly useful for inkjet printing papers that can suffer from color bleeding if heat-laminated. Laminate cartridges run from $35 to $45 and are in 50and 100-foot lengths. (Distributed by Dot Line Corp., 800-423-2624.)
I know that storing unexposed film in the freezer will preserve it for extended periods of time. But what about exposed film? If processing the film after exposure is not possible, will freezing do any good? Joseph Messana, Utica, MI Yes, indeed.