Photography News Issue 31

Your FREE newspaper packed with the latest news, views and stories from the world of photography news Photography Produced by Issue 31 11 Apr – 5 May News Tests Reviews Interviews Techniques Competitions Exhibitions Clubs


A Samsung 64GB Pro memory card Enter the competition on page 56 WIN!

Fujifilm X-E2S Turn to page 35 to see it in action

Gear of the Year All thewinners & trophies on page 13

Testing, testing 7 pages of accessory tests start on page 38

The finalists he five rounds of the Camera Club of the Year competition are over and we have our five qualifiers. Who will win the grand prize?

In association with

Join us for Photo 24 Photo 24 is a free photography event taking place in London. It starts at noon on 17 June …continue reading on page 9

After five themed rounds, covering The power of nature; Movement; Patterns & textures; Brr, it’s cold; and Low light, five clubs have qualified for the final of CameraClub of the Year 2015-16. In no particular order, they are Parkwood Camera Club, Smethwick Photographic Society, Ayr Photographic Society, Harpenden Photographic Society and Dorchester Camera Club – congratulations to all of them.

The five clubs will each learn the details of the Grand Final task this week, and have a fortnight to complete it. Judging will take place immediately and the Camera Club of the Year 2015-16 will be announced in issue 32. All the entered photos from the five rounds of Camera Club of the Year are on the website.

For winning a round, each club receives a professional quality Canon PIXMA PRO-100S printer, worth £499.99, which produces A3+ prints with its eight colour inkset. The five finalists now go through to the Grand Final, for a chance to win a Canon imagePROGRAF PRO‑1000, a 12-colour, A2 printer worth £1199.99 and a day with renowned landscape photographer, David Noton.

Photography News | Issue 31 |

Photography News | Issue 31 |



Tokina’s 14-20mm f/2 Pro DX lens is available in Canon and Nikon mounts, selling at £849.99. It features an all-new proprietary optical design, which uses three apsherical lens elements, as well as four Super-low Dispersion glass elements. A One-Touch Focus Clutch Mechanism allows you to switch between AF and MF using the snapping focus ring. Tokina offers bright aperture in wide lens

Canon 1300D Canon has announced a new entry-level DSLR – the EOS 1300D. It features a large APS-C, 18-megapixel sensor and DIGIC 4+ processor. The ISO range is 100-6400, expandable to 12,800, great for shooting in low light. Features include Full HD video, Wi-Fi and NFC. With three buying options available you can purchase the 1300D body only for £289.99, kitted with the EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 DCIII for £329.99 or with the EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS II for £369.99.

Two new fromLeica

Up first is the Leica APO-Vario-Elmarit-SL 90– 280mm f/2.8-4 lens. It features integrated optical image stabilisation, which allows exposure times to be increased up to 3.5 stops. Dual internal focusing ensures a fast and quiet autofocus while shooting and the lens also features a detachable tripod mount. Its focusing range at 90mm is 0.6m and 1.4m at 280mm. The 90-280mm lens is available for £4650.

The second is a new addition to the Leica T Camera System portfolio, the Leica Summilux-TL 35mm f/1.4 ASPH. Available in black or silver anodised finish, the lens costs £1650. Also new is firmware update for the medium-format Leica S (Typ 007).

Added to Sony’s line-up of Cyber-shot cameras is the RX10 III, which features a 24-600mm f/2.4-4 telephoto lens and boasts a 20.1-megapixel 1.0-type stacked sensor and BIONZ processor. Other features include 4K video quality; triple lens rings for focus, zoom and aperture; an upgraded handgrip shape compared with other RX10models; and a new focus button on the lens barrel, which allows you to lock the focus distance. Sony has also introduced two lenses to its full-frame FE line-up, the FE 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 G OSS telephoto zoom lens priced at £1150 and the FE 50mm f/1.8 prime lens priced at £240. See further with Sony

Sigma has paired its 150-600mm f/5-6.3 Sports and Contemporary lenses with the TC-1401 1.4x Teleconverter to offer kits with an extended reach. The Sports kit retails at £1649.99, while the Contemporary kit is £1349.99. There is also a new firmware update available for both the 150-600mm f/5-6.3 Sports and Contemporary lenses, Canon and Nikon mounts. The update improves the AF algorithm and enhances the AF speed through optimisation of the HSM drive control. It can be installed using SIGMA OPTIMIZATION Pro, which can be downloaded from download/en. Sigma expands reach

Nikon is offering up to £150 cashback on selected DX and FX NIKKOR lenses. The offer runs until 29 June 2016 and all claims must be received before 31 July 2016 to qualify. Nikon Spring Cashback

Photography News | Issue 31 |



Bag it with Tamrac Tamrac’s new Hoodoo Backpacks are made from water-resistant waxed canvas and feature comfortable harnesses. The Hoodoo 18 can hold a mirrorless or compact DSLR as well as an extra lens. There’s also space for personal gear and a dedicated sleeve for a 13in laptop. The Hoodoo 20, on the other hand, is larger in size than the 18 and can fit additional lenses, as well as a 15in laptop and also offers easy access to your gear through the front of the pack. This versatile bag includes a removable, protective camera module, which can act as a separate shoulder bag. Each model comes in a choice of three colours, Kiwi green, Pumpkin orange or Ocean blue. The Hoodoo 18 is priced at £89.99 and the Hoodoo 20 is £130.

Vanguard addition to

The newest addition to the award-winning Vanguard VEO collection is the VEO AM-264TV aluminium monopod with tri-feet and PH-113V Video Pan Head. Its maximum load capacity is 6kg and it weighs just 1.5kg. Folded down, the VEOAM-264TV is 64.5cm and extends to 171cm. A screw on the base allows you to tilt or lock the monopod in position, while the PH-113V two-way video head can tilt +60° to -90° and rotates 360°. It’s priced at £109.99. VEOcollection Whether you plan on shooting action stills or video, Vanguard’s new monopod with tri-feet could be your new three-legged friend

MacGroup and 4VDesign have launched a range of premium camera straps made from handcrafted, Italian Cuoio leather. There are 29 lines available in total, which include neck straps and wrist straps, available in various colours and sizes. Prices range from£38.50 forWatchWrist Straps designed for small and medium compacts up to the higher priced ALA Top Leather straps for £109, which are ideal for any camera that features universal or metal ring fittings. There is a test on the 4v Lusso Large strap in this issue. Go premiumwith 4V Design leather straps

Expandingitslightingequipment, Elinchrom has announced two new kit collections: the D-Lite RX range and ELB 400 sets. Also announced is a new Elinchrom EL-Skyport Plus system. The D-Lite RX range offers seven sets, from those for beginners to those for more advanced shooters with prices starting at £540. See our review of the Softbox To Go Set on page 42. The ELB 400 sets include four portable, robust and lightweight options to choose from and offer more than twice the flash capacity of the original Quadra. Light the waywith Elinchrom

Spider hand strap

Spider Holster has announced three new products: the Spider Light Hand Strap designed for mirrorless and other lightweight cameras; the Spider Web tether; and the Black Widow Vertical Adapter, which allows the Black Widow holster to be attached to a vertical strap. The Spider Light Hand Strap is available in six different trim colours.

Photography News | Issue 31 |



The GoPlus range from Benro features both classic and travel tripods with eight models to choose from. The Classic range models offer classic folding legs and a Quick Flip centre column, which can be used as a lateral arm for shooting at low angles. The Travel range features reverse folding legs, as well as the Quick Flip centre column, providing versatility in a travel-friendly tripod. Each model within the range is available in either carbon fibre or aluminium and can hold a maximum load of 14kg. All the tripods can be converted into monopods, offering further versatility. Prices start from £130. Benro introduces GoPlus range

Before: no filter

After: with LeeHard grad

Originally Lee Filters offered its medium and very hard ND grads as custom-made filters for professional photographers. Now these options are available to all users of the Seven5, 100mm and SW150 systems. Both the medium and very hard grads are available in 0.3ND, 0.45ND, 0.6ND, 0.75ND, 0.9ND and 1.2ND versions. Individual filters and sets are available – the 100mm starts from £86.23. Lee Filters additions

MacGroup and Phottix have added the PhottixHexa-Para series of deep octa softboxes to their range. Available in two extra large sizes to fit Bowens-compatible S-type mounts or an Elinchrom mount, both Hexa-Para softboxes have a removable inner double-defused centre, an outer diffuser and 16 support rods, which help to maintain a close-to-perfect circle. The 120/47in softbox costs £169, while the 150/59in is £249. Hexa-Para speedrings are required in addition to purchasing the octa softboxes; both the S-Type for Bowens and Elinchrom Speed Ring cost £27. Also new is the Odin II TTL Flash Trigger which features group buttons and thumbwheel control for fast operation, TTL power control +/-3EV and a high-speed sync of up to 1/8000sec on compatible cameras. Currently available for Nikon and Canon, the receiver costs £125 and the transmitter £160. A Sony compatible model is expected to arrive in late April. NewPhottix products launched

Photography News | Issue 31 |



SonyWPA The Sony World Photography Awards has had another successful year with entries from all over the world. British doctor and amateur photographer, Tino Solomon was named the winner of the United Kingdom National Award, with second place taken by Mike Odwyer and the third place winner named as Stuart Cripps. All the winning and shortlisted images across the competition will be on show at the Sony World Photography Awards Exhibition at Somerset House, London, from 22 April until 8 May 2016.

News in brief

Final call for EPOTY The Environmental Photographer of the Year competition is making a final call for entries before the deadline on 18 April 2016. Submit your images or videos that promote an understanding of contemporary global environmental and social issues Joining the Twitterati Photography News has joined Twitter. Join the discussion, get inspired, share images and keep up to date @photonewspn. @photonewspn including climate change, sustainable development, biodiversity and human rights and you could win part of the £6000 prize fund. CaptureOne Pro9.1 The latest update for Capture One Pro, version 9.1 is now free to download for existing Capture One Pro 9 users. The update features a new range of workflow, Image editing and asset management tools. Plustek Z300 scanner The new ePhoto Z300 scanner fromPlustek automatically detects photos or documents placed in the device and will scan themup to 300dpi. It accepts paper sizes fromone inch up to A4 size and up to 0.76mm in thickness. The Z300 scanner costs £130. Dive in Take your compact for a splash with the Polaroid Dive. Designed to house compacts fromCanon, Nikon, Olympus, Panasonic and Sony, the Polaroid Dive protects your camera up to 130 feet underwater. Prices range from $99.99-599.99 (£69.92- 419.54) depending on the camera. If you fancy trying out some underwater shooting see our feature for advice and tips. Peter Watson, a contributing photographer to several image libraries, takes you through 80 practical lessons, with tried-and -tested techniques in Lessons in Landscape, Techniques for Taking Better Photographs . Available fromMay, Lessons in Landscape costs £19.99. Lessons in landscape Looking to improve your landscape photography?


Thousands of images from across the globe were submitted to the 2015 World Press Photo Contest from the likes of photojournalists, picture agencies, newspapers and magazines. Now you can see the chosen images and most newsworthy moments within the World Press Photo 16 paperback, which will be available from 20 May, priced £18.95. World press photo

Above top Royal Marine Band at ship launch by Mike Odwyer Above below The Door to Hell by Tino Solomon Left Enchanted Bamboo Lights by Kai Nomiyama


You may know your stuff, but there’s nothing wrong with refining your knowledge. Mastering Exposure, The Definitive Guide for Photographer s by David Taylor will help you to control your exposures and expand your practical knowledge in order to create stunning images. Available now Mastering Exposure is priced at £19.99. Mastering exposure book

Millennium Hotels and Resorts newly launched Through The Lens photography competition gives you the chance to win £5000 worth of top-of-the-range camera equipment! Enter up to three images that demonstrate the chosen theme ofWhatmakes Britain beautiful? before the closing date of 2 October 2016. Whether it’s natural, industrial, wildlife, family or friends, choose what you think defines Britain’s beauty. Finalists’ workwill be showcased at an awards ceremony at the Chelsea Harbour Hotel in London. Capture Britain’s beauty competition

Photography News | Issue 31 |



Online photo community photocrowd.comhas launched a print sale service for its users. Members with a free Crowd account can earn a minimum of 50% of the profits from each print sale, while paid subscribers to the site can earn up to 80% commission. Users can also purchase their own prints through the site, with introductory offers for the first month, which includes 25% off all prints, or choose the Founders Subscription that gives three months free and a Founders badge for your Photocrowd profile. Photocrowdprint sales launch

News in brief

Morememory fromLexar Lexar has announced a 200GB high-performance microSDXC UHS-I card, which offers read transfer speeds up to 95MB per second. It also comes with a USB 3.0 reader. Also announced is the XQD 2.0 USB 3.0 reader. Toshiba SD cards Toshiba has launched a new range of ultra-high-performance EXCERIA PRO UHS-II microSD cards, as well as extending its high-end EXCERIA PRO SD and EXCERIAmicroSD and SD card line-up. Also new is the TransMemory-EXTMU382 32GB USB pen drive, with both Type A and C ports. DxOunbundles The DxOONE camera is now available at a new low price of just £399, thanks to the unbundling of its desktop software. Also new is the Version 1.3 update, which is available for the DxOOne connected camera via the iTunes App Store.

Henri Cartier-Bresson: Paris World-renowned photographer Henri Cartier-Bresson’s images of Paris will be on show at the Sainsbury Centre for Visual Arts, University of East Anglia, Norwich from 23 April until 29 August.

Joining forces PhotoBox and Zenfolio now offer a new subscription gallery service, which allows you to create a professional website and offer a range of printed products to your clients. A free one-month trial is available, as well as three different packages; the starter package which is £5 a month, Pro UK package for £16 a month or the Advanced UK package, which is £25 per month. Get a prowebsite and sell prints in one place

The exhibition, Henri Cartier- Bresson: PARIS , will include 83 images from the Magnum photographer, which were all captured between 1929 and 1985. Henri Cartier-Bresson fans won’t want to miss out as some of the images are being shown in the UK for the first time. Tickets for PARIS are £7/£6 concessions.


Photography News | Issue 31 |

Photography News | Issue 31 |



Join us for Photo 24 Photo 24 is a free photography event taking place in London. It starts at noon on 17 June and ends exactly 24 hours later. If you want to join us for this annual image-taking extravaganza all you have to do is sign up now

In association with

Nikon School

London is one of the world’s most photogenic cities with an unlimited supply of great opportunities for creative photographers to enjoy. With famous locations, great architecture, events, markets and street photography, there is more than enough to keep a keen photographer busy for a lifetime. Of course, you can go to London any time, but Photo 24 gives you the chance to shoot the citywith a group of like-minded souls and we’ll be running photographic contests and other activities in conjunction with the event. We’ll have news of prizes (hint: there may be a Nikon D500 up for grabs) and other fun stuff in future issues, and to give you an idea of the level of work possible, the pictures on this page were taken by readers on last year’s Photo 24. This is the fourth Photo 24 and it’s getting more and more popular by the year. That means places are limited. So, to be as fair as possible, we’re asking for registrations now and after the closing date of 6 May we will be selecting 200 names at random. We will contact those

selected to confirm attendance and the unsuccessful applicants will be put on a waiting list – in case! So, if you fancy the idea of a day-long camera experience in London, log onto (or register at), click on the Members’ Area tab and choose Register for Photo 24, then fill in the application form. Remember, applications must be made by midnight 6 May. What, how & where you want Successful applicants will be fully briefed before the event in terms of preparation and kit, as well as general health and safety. We’ll also be sending out our special Photo 24 Passport, full of hints and tips as well as location ideas. The core principles of Photo 24 are (as ever): Everyone who comes along can shoot what they want, how they want and where they want. You can stay and shoot for the whole 24 hours or perhaps you might prefer a stint on Friday, have dinner and a sleep for a few hours and rejoin the activities for sunrise

the following morning. It is entirely up to the individual. That said, we will organise photo walks and regular meet-ups throughout the 24 hours, as well as some optional paid-for events (maybe a ride on the London Eye, or a trip on the Thames?), too. Thanks to our association with the Nikon School all participants will also have access for the whole 24 hours to its central London facilities, just a few minutes’ walk from Oxford Circus Tube station. If you have never attended this sort of mass photo event before, you can join a group dedicated to helping you get the most out of the 24 hours and you can also buddy up with fellow photographers. We’ll also be sending out regular texts during the event with news, advice and shooting suggestions. If all this sounds absolutely brilliant and you would like to join us for a photo-filled trip to the capital, then go to absolutephoto. com and register now.

Thanks to our association with Nikon and Nikon School for Photo 24, we have 24-hour access to the School’s Margaret Street premises in central London. It's just a few minutes' walk from Oxford Circus Tube station, free refreshments will be available during the event, and there's seating and toilet facilities, too. It is also the perfect meeting point so if you have lost your photo buddy (or want to hook up with one), the Nikon School is the place to aim for. While the Nikon School training team are experts in Nikon equipment, they are also excellent photographers in their own right and can help you get more from Photo 24 regardless of the camera you're using. Of course, they can help Nikon users who want to learn more about their camera during the event, too. Nikon School runs courses throughout the year, not just at its central London base but all around the country. Here are some of the upcoming courses on offer to give you an idea of its breadth of coverage. It is worth saying that many of the skills-based and creative courses are open to photographers of all brand loyalties. For details go to the Nikon website.

16April The Art of Film Noir Portraits: Part 1, London – £149

3May Getting Started with Speedlights: Part 1, London – £129

13May Join the Pros: Wildlife, Droitwich – £179

20May The Art of Cityscapes, London – £129

Photography News | Issue 31 |


Tell us your club’s latest news, email:


Camera club news If your club has any news that you want to share with the rest of the world, this is the page for it. Your story might be about your club’s success in a contest, or a member’s personal achievement; it could be about a group outing you had recently or when the annual exhibition is on show. Any news is eligible for inclusion, so club publicity officers please take note of the submission guidelines and get your stories in

How to submit

Deadline for the next issue: 28April 2016

We need words and pictures by 28 April for the next issue of Photography News , which will be available from 9 May. Write your story in a Word document (400 words maximum). Please include contact details of the club, exhibition or event – website, meeting times, opening times, whatever is relevant. Images should be JPEGs, 2000 pixels on the longest dimension, any colour space, and image credits should be included. If the story is an exhibition or event, please send a picture from the exhibition (not the publicity poster) or one from the event. If it includes people please identify them. Attach the Word document and JPEGs to an email and send to

Around the world at Hailsham

News in brief

Visit Hailsham Photographic Society’s annual exhibition to see images from East Sussex to Africa

Apology Our apologies to Lynne Morris fromWigan 10 and Andy Polakowski from Mold Camera Club. We wrongly credited Andy’s image, Travelling Hopefully, to Lynne in the last issue. Sorry about that. Lightroom demo Update your knowledge with Richard Curtis, principal solutions consultant digital imaging for Adobe Systems Europe. He’s giving a EmmerdalevisitsEarl Shilton Currently appearing as James Barton in Emmerdale , actor Bill Ward is also an award-winning photographer. He’s visiting Earl Shilton Camera Club on 18 May to give a talk Tickets cost £8 for non-members and they’re £5 for club members. demonstration at Wantage Camera Club on 23 April. Tickets are £12.50 in advance or £15 on the door.

Hailsham Photographic Society’s Annual Print Exhibition is on 20-25 June, and showcases images from the club’s 80 members. The display features almost 150 prints, taken across the world, many of which are award-winners. Visitors can also vote for their favourite shot to be in with a chance of winning a print. The display is at the Charles Hunt Centre and is open from10am to 4pm

daily. Entry is free and members of the club will be on hand for a chat about the images. The society has also recently raised £1000 for the Kipling County Carriage Driving Group for the disabled. They raised themoneywith their annual colour AV show.


Farnborough Camera Club has been busy both running its own club competitions and entering interclub ones so far this year. The year kicked off the print panel contest, which chairman Richard Jenkins won, fighting off stiff competition from Mark Pirie, John Fletcher, Wendy Collens and Sally Seager. Next up were the Rainbow and Molesworth competitions between Aldershot, Farnham and Fleet Camera Club, Yately Camera Club and Farnham. The Rainbow is an open competition, while the Molesworth is monochrome only. Together the two contests attracted around 100 entries, and in what the club believe is a first, Farnham’s chairman Richard Jenkins won both! Finally in the club’s ownprint contest, LindaKentwon the beginners section and Lesley Turner and Richard Jenkins were successful in the advanced group. While at the club, judge Chris Palmer also presented CPAGB awards to Lesley Turner and Sally Seager. Competitioncentral at Farnborough

Visit Brentwood Library during April to see Brentwood and District Photographic Club’s exhibition. The club is currently actively recruiting members; the first three meetings are free of charge. The club meets on Fridays at The Friends’ Meeting House in Shenfield.


Right Farnborough CC’s Richard Jenkins with the Molesworth Cup, with June Miller and Dave Smith, and one of his winning images.

Above ShadowWalkers – on show at Brentwood Library.

Photography News | Issue 31 |

Photography News | Issue 31 |

Photography News | Issue 31 |



Photography News Awards 2015 The winners Last month saw the UK’s imaging industry packed into the NEC for The Photography Show 2016 – so it was the perfect venue to roll out the red carpet for the Photography News Awards. PN’s editor Will Cheung played host and handed out the trophies to the deserving winners, as voted by our readers...

Fujifilm’s Theo Georghiades collected the Awards for Professional CSC with the FujifilmX-T1, while the FujifilmX-T10 won best Consumer CSC and Launch of the Year.

The PN 2015 Award for Advanced CSC went to the Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark II and it was collected at The Photography Show by Olympus’s Mark Thackara.

Nikon won Advanced DSLR with its D810, Consumer DSLR with the Nikon D7200 and Telephoto zoom lens with the Nikon AF-S 200- 500mm f/5.6E ED VR. From left, Mark Higgins, Sara Marshall and Briony Samuel collect the Awards.

Lighting specialist Elinchrom won Awards for Monobloc Flash with the Elinchrom BRX 500 and Innovation of the Year for the Elinchrom EL- Skyport Transmitter Plus HS. Chris Whittle from Elinchromwas more than happy to collect the Awards.

Chris Burfoot collects the Award for the best Mains Flash Power Pack, the mighty broncolor Scoro S 1600 RFS.

Photography News | Issue 31 |



Long-established tripod and accessory brand Manfrotto won Awards for best Tripod: Carbon-Fibre with the Manfrotto 290 XTRA Carbon, and Shoulder/ Sling Bag with the Manfrotto Agile II Sling. Manfrotto UK’s Paul Hill and Darren Long came along to collect Manfrotto’s trophies.

Leading independent lens brand Tamron scooped two Awards, best Superzoom lens, the Tamron 16-300mm f/3.5-6.3 Di II VC PZDMacro, and best Macro lens, the Tamron SP 90mm f/2.8 Di VC USDMacro. From left to right, Martin Syrek, Alexander Marx, Jane Nicholson, Leo Steinberg and Jerry Martin.

Jenny Hodge and Jason Hewerd from Leica collected the Award for the Premium Compact winner, the Leica Q.

Oddný Edwards from Vanguard picked up the Award for best Tripod: Travel, for the Vanguard VEO 204AB.

Bag and case specialist Lowepro scooped two Awards, best Roller/Hard Case went to the Lowepro Pro Roller X100 AWwhile the Photo Backpack winner was the Lowepro Pro Trekker 450 AW. Loraine Morgan fromDayMen International collected the Award.

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A quality monitor is essential if you want to enjoy your images at their best and the winner of the best Monitor category was the BenQ SW2700PT Pro 27in IPS LCD. Jason Lee and Wen Ku flew in from BenQ’s head office in Taiwan to collect their prize.

DomGurney from Epson is seen picking up the Award for best Inkjet Printer, the Epson SureColor SC-P800.

Quality output remains a hugely important aspect of photography and Loxley Colour scooped PN Awards for best Processing Lab and Book Service. Calum Thomson from Loxley collected the prizes.

We all need memory and storage is a hugely popular subject. Winner of the best External Storage Device was the G-Technology 4TB G-Dock ev. Mark Billington from G-Technology is pictured here receiving the Award.

Pixapro is a young company in the imaging world, but showed its reputation is growing quickly by winning best On-Camera Flash for the Pixapro Li-ION580 ETTL. Tang Wu (centre) and Ling Ting Wu were on hand to collect the Award.

With so many options, the media categories saw some great products facing off. The Inkjet Media: Photographic Finish winner was PermaJet FB Gold Silk 315gsm and the prize was collected by Joseph Reiner of PermaJet .

Memory card winner: Samsung SDXC Pro Plus UHS-1

Photography News | Issue 31 |

Photography News | Issue 31 |

17 Interview

Profile TomClunn Interfit is a popular and well-respected lighting brand, but in the past few years it has been in the doldrums. That’s all set to change with a wave of exciting new products

Although Interfit has been around for many years, recent arrivals to photography might not know much about the company. Can you introduce Interfit please? Interfit has been in the photo market for around ten years now. We offer a huge variety of studio lighting equipment, modifiers and photographic accessories. Everything from flash and continuous lighting, to LED panels, lighting stands, softboxes, backgrounds and more. What do you think are the strengths of the Interfit brand? Perhaps, more importantly, what do you think are the opportunities looking forward? I think the main strength of Interfit is our ability to grow and adapt in a market that is constantly changing. We have offices in the UK and USA which allows us to spot trends and advancements early to keep moving forward. Interfit has been very busy working on a new corporate identity. What was the thinking behind that? The last 12-14 months have seen a lot of positive changes for the company. In February 2015 we introduced our new CEO, Frank Muscatello. Since then, we’ve adopted a new management structure, developed some important new products, redesigned our corporate image and re-asserted ourselves as a competitive brand in the world of studio lighting. The rebranding has allowed us to launch the ‘new’ Interfit to an audience who may not have been aware of the company previously. How is the lighting market? Is there still plenty of interest from enthusiasts as well as professionals? Last year was tough for the market, but this year is already proving to be full of promise. Keen photographers, whether professional or amateur, will always need good, consistent, reliable lighting options. This is something Interfit prides itself on offering, and with some of our new products we’re confident that photographers of all abilities will consider our lighting solutions more seriously. Many companies offer lighting and accessories. What sets Interfit apart from rivals? I think the fact that we’re a relatively small company (compared with some of the bigger brands) keeps us hungry and focused on progression of products and delivering great customer service, so that’s the main difference, but I don’t really see the other brands as rivals. If you worry too much about what other people are doing, it’s very easy to lose sight of your own goals. We’re more interested in the wants and needs of our customers and helping them achieve the best images possible with the best products we have to offer. Interfit recently introduced the S1, a highly specified portable lighting system with many great features including high-speed sync (HSS). It’s early days in the product’s life cycle but how has it been received so far? The S1 has been really well received since its launch. When we first announced it, people were

looking for a catch or some trick in the small print, but as Photography News knows from its own review of the S1, there isn’t a catch. We wanted to create a light that would match the technology and function of comparable market-leading flash options, but at a price that would be compelling for everyone from the keen amateur or prosumer all the way up to working professionals. And that’s what we’ve created in the S1. What really excites you about the S1? I’ve been shooting with the S1 for around six months now and it still amazes me how adaptable it is to any given situation. It’s a real workhorse in the field and I don’t worry about battery life or colour consistency at all when I’m shooting on location. The controls are intuitive and the results are brilliant. More than anything it’s made people ask what they’re really paying for with more expensive lights from other brands. With the S1’s arrival, as it is a mains and battery driven flash unit, what is the future of the Stellar and EX lighting families? The S1, though accessible to everyone, is really for a niche market of photographers; those who want HSS, TTL flash metering, IGBT circuitry and the option to be fully portable with a true studio lighting solution. Having said that, there’s certainly still a place for the Stellar and EX studio light ranges. I’m sure that, moving forward, we will update and improve the ranges as technology improves, but it doesn’t have to be an either or scenario. The lighting choice comes down to the needs of the individual photographer. Interfit has also recently introduced the Proflash TLi flashguns for Canon and Nikon. These are the first speedlights with li-ion rechargeable batteries. Why is this an important feature for photographers? Imagine a world where you don’t have bags and

pockets filled with AA batteries. The Proflash speedlights make this a reality. With over 650 full power flashes per charge, HSS, TTL flash metering, plus master and slave compatibility with Canon and Nikon speedlights, these flashguns are a fraction of the cost of the on- brand battery powered flashes. Flash aside, Interfit seems to be working hard on continuous lighting too. With all the interest in videography, have you seen a greater interest in this lighting type? We have seen an increase in interest, but not just for video. Our F5 continuous lighting kits and our 19in fluorescent ringlight have seen incredible growth in the last three or four months with photographers. Continuous light is so manageable indoors and the effects of the ringlight are just stunning. They’re both balanced at 5400K so you can use them together for some really great results. What do you think will be the next big thing in lighting? For me personally, it’s the S1. I think we have reached a point where improvements are more focusedon fine-tuning andupgrading technology. Rather than re-inventing the wheel, it’s more about improving the function and performance. What else can we expect from Interfit in 2016? We have some more new products arriving this year, most notably, our new range of softboxes, modifiers and lighting umbrellas. The whole range is made with exceptionally high-grade materials, all the softboxes will come with grids included, and the price points will be inviting to say the least. The highlight of the range for me is the new 200cm (72in) Deep Parabolic softbox. I’ve used a prototype of its smaller brother (120cm/48in) and the quality of light is breathtaking.


Years in the photo industry? 12 Current location Hamble, Southampton Last picture taken I photographed an acrobat/break dancer in Sheffield. When youwere younger, what did youwant to bewhen you grewup? For a long time I wanted to be an ice hockey player, but then I found photography. Dogs or cats? Dogs Toast or cereal? Toast with Marmite Email or phone call? I get a lot of emails, but I prefer phone calls.

Rather than re-inventing the wheel, it’s more about improving the function and performance

Photography News | Issue 31 |



Before the Judge


Each month, a respected judge or exhibition selector shares their thoughts and experiences. This month, it’s multiple award-winning photographer ChristineWiddall ChristineWiddall

evidenced by the number of UK clubs reaching the top ten positions in the FIAP World Cup. This is especially noticeable in nature photography, where birds in flight and even birds fighting can now be captured in wonderful detail and sharpness thanks to the advances in digital cameras. Colour prints are less often tainted by unwanted extreme colour casts and, with the advance of software techniques, we can blend images together and achieve a full range of highlight and shadow detail in the most challenging conditions. I worry that projected digital images will take over from prints in some clubs, now that the quality and resolution of digital projectors is improving. Most big competitions, from federation to international level, require working with other judges. Most judging panels get on well together and I like to think that we are all prepared to discuss themerits of the best of the work when making our awards and to compromise when there isn’t total agreement. It’s been said that the best picture is the one the judges can agree on and, in my own experience, such agreement is generally arrived at amicably. Many salons allow each judge to make their own special award for their favourite image in addition to the jointly agreed top awards. Cold judging Much of my judging is done at club level where I prefer to judge ‘cold’ on the night, without having seen the images before. I like to experience them freshly in front of the audience and let them experience the picture with me, laugh with me at the humorous ones and try to understand those with a deeper meaning. That can be challenging when something difficult to assess is presented, but fortunately I have rarely been lost for words and experienced judges learn to cope with any situation. My first thought is to look for the positives in the photograph and, even in the weakest submission, it is usually possible to see something of merit, if only the intent of the photographer. It’s easy to be carried away with a picture that is so good it takes your breath away but it is equally important to give an appraisal of that image. We try to encourage clubs not to overload judges with huge numbers of pictures in a single evening, because I believe every piece of work deserves some comment and not to be dismissed with just a mark. Some common failings I see in club competitions are poor use of light and poor use of processing. As far as composition goes, I take

Words by Christine Widdall

It never occurred to me that I would become a judge… it just happened. Many years ago, I was asked to judge a small competition at a local church group. I found they needed very basic advice on how they could better express themselves photographically with their point- and-shoot cameras and that’s where my judging style developed. By word of mouth, I judged at nearby camera clubs and soon joined the local list of judges. Later, once I began to be a successful salon entrant, it wasn’t long before I was invited to judge at federation level and then at national and international salons. This led to judging in France, Belgium, Malta and Ireland. In 2012, I joined the Photographic Alliance list of judges and have taken part in the PAGB Awards for Photographic Merit as one of six adjudicators. I am involved in the selection of new judges for my federation, where I organise amentoring scheme to help candidates prepare for their PAGB awards adjudication. The most remarkable judging experience I’ve had was an international exhibition in Alsace in their coldest winter in 100 years. I arrived in Alsace to a temperature that reached -18°C overnight. We were judging in the village of Riedisheim in a beautiful timbered and plastered historic building. When we arrived the heating wasn’t switched on, but our hosts came to the rescue with hot coffee, brioche and pastries to warm us up. The pictures were great and it was quite an experience judging with a professional French photojournalist plus French, Belgian and Swiss judges from their national associations and learning how different their preferences can be. Subsequent engagements abroad working with judges of other nationalities has helped me to develop as a judge. Beingentrustedwiththeappraisal of work by other photographers is a big responsibility, but it is also rewarding. Beginners need the most encouragement as they struggle to develop their style and it is often the processing of images as much as the composition that they need guidance in. Editing software is powerful so it is easy to overprocess and oversharpen pictures and I try to point out sensitively where something can be improved. I hope that in the process of judging, I give constructive help to photographers, but that is for others to comment on. In the UK, the standard of club photography is rising which is

ChristineWiddall With numerous accolades and awards to her name and more than 30 years of experience in club photography, Christine judges at club level as well as nationally and internationally. Years in photography I began photography as a child of five, working with my father's darkroom. He brought a Leica back from Germany after the Second World War and that was the first camera he let me use. I was immediately hooked. Home club This is my 30th year at Oldham Photographic Society. I am president elect and will take up my fourth term as president in September to take the club through its 150th celebration year in 2017. Favourite camera Pentax K-3 Favourite lens Pentx 16-50mm DA*, a beautifully sharp lens and ideal with the 1.5x crop K-3 Favourite photo accessories The Marumi DHG Achromat Macro 330 (+3 dioptre) close-up lens attachment. I can fit that to my 50-135mm or 70-200mm lens for a macro facility on any camera. Favourite photographers I appreciate so many genres and styles that it is impossible to choose one favourite. Favourite subject I am probably best known for photomontage and taking a creative approach, but my first love was landscape and nature. I published a book on Saddleworth, where I live and still spend time documenting it. Awards I have received many awards over the last 13 years spent entering exhibitions. My photographic highlights include the RPS Award for the best set of creative images, the Excellence Award of the International Federation of Photographic Art (EFIAP), the Master Award of the Photographic Alliance of Great Britain (MPAGB) and the Fellowship Award of the British Photographic Exhibitions (FBPE).

the viewthat ‘if itworks, itworks’. By looking at theories of composition and visual communication, it is usually possible to understand why one image works and why another doesn’t, which is often concerned with psychology as much as with graphic rules. Photographs are not just about where an element is placed, but about how they work together in the picture, whether they tell a story, impart an idea or create a mood. We respond emotionally to pictures. Inevitably, some images fail toget theirmessage acrossbutwe should look for the positive aspects of work we judge and try to help the photographer to develop a stronger way of seeing and communicating. I enjoy pictures with a clear message and those that shout ‘quality’. HDR, for example, is just a processing method. It can be done well or badly and it’s the same with different genres of photography… my job as a judge is to analyse how successful an image is within its own genre. To that end, I think I have tried most genres of photography over the years. By experiencing each genre I’ve found the difficulties and challenges within each subject type and I try to bring that to my judging. I am disappointed that judges sometimes have a poor reputation, because most of them work very hard, for no reward other than travelling expenses and they give their time and expertise freely. As individualsweallhavedifferentlikes and dislikes, different experience,

different levels of knowledge and unique personalities that we bring to our analysis of each image. Because of that, it is inevitable that we can’t make everyone happy all the time. Our job as judges is to encourage and advise and to select winners within the rules of the competitions. Naturally some judges will be more popular and some photographers will be more open to constructive criticism. Perhaps we should have a kind of Hippocratic oath amongst the judging fraternity such as ‘above all, do no harm’. I think judges coming together on a peer-to-peer basis to discuss judging might help to moderate some of the worst traits and we are starting to do that now in the Lancashire and Cheshire Photographic Union. As judges, we also see styles come and go, but the trends I am seeing in the strongest work are better editing, sympathetic processing and clarity of expression. In spite of trends, great photography will succeed. My final advice to club members is to make your images clear and simple, pay attention to processing and listen to the advice of those who will see in your work what you choose to ignore or don’t see. Appraisal sessions with peer groups can improve the general standard of your work. So don’t be too proud to listen but don’t be afraid to be adventurous or to break the rules.

What do you think?

Have you seen a photographic judge at work who you’d like to see profiled in Photography News ? If so please drop us a line to opinion@photography- with the judge’s name and, if possible, their contact details.

Photography News | Issue 31 |

Advertisement feature 19

Colour calibration

What you see is what you get Controlling image colour and contrast is vital – and it doesn’t get much easier than when you’re using Datacolor’s Spyder range


Ever been faced with the problem of shooting the same subjects throughout the course of a day, and all the varied lighting conditions that the day can bring? Colour wise, you need to arrive at consistent end results, no matter what kit you’re using, but fortunately the guys at Datacolor can save you a lot of time and heartache doing it. The problem is never more obvious than when shooting a wedding. The bride and groom can have you shooting in any number of conditions: a poorly lit church with stained glass windows, candles and in the worse cases bar heaters; group scenes in the great outdoors where you’ll need to deal with whatever light is available; and finally the reception with a possible coup de grâce of an evening disco to complete the day’s lighting extravaganza. If you’re using multiple cameras and shooting video across those conditions then you’re giving yourself a potential nightmare; making sure everyone looks equally tanned in all shots and that the bride doesn’t look as though she’s had four changes of gown, from ivory to beige and back again. With so many variables it’d be nice to set some control over what you’re doing, allowing you to match different cameras, deliver a neutral white point for shots (where needed) and control contrast across your entire shoot. Fortunately that’s what Datacolor’s SpyderCHECKR and SpyderCUBE do best. Part of the Spyder range of calibration devices, they put you in the driving seat

from the first shot to the last whether it’s stills or video you’re shooting.

get the angle correct as conventional cards do. Simply pull it out of its bag, hang it in the scene or use a mini-tripod, shoot and away you go. Control the colour When you need to do more than simply set white-balance and control contrast for your shots, and instead control all the colours across your shoot’s spectrum, allowing you to get that dress, skin tone and any other important hues just right, then the SpyderCUBE’s big brother the SpyderCHECKR comes into its own. This multi-coloured target comes in a highly robust plastic case about the same shape and size as a tablet computer. Intentionally not as pocketable as the SpyderCUBE its fold-out design is ideal for shooting from a distance and in particular for group scenes. Controlling the retouch Once you’ve gone to the trouble of removing colour casts and linearising images so they appear to be in the same lighting conditions you’d be rather defeating the object if you started retouching and adjusting colours on a non-colour managed screen. Get yourself a Spyder5 screen calibrator to manage your screen colours and this won’t be a problem. This ultra-accurate device simply plugs into your computer’s USB sockets and allows you to calibrate connected screens by running the easy-to-use Mac or PC software. Once run you can retouch your

Control your capture The SpyderCUBE is a highly pocketable version of a grey card but avoids you having to worry about it becoming creased, stained and worthless when compared with conventional foldable cloth or paper cards. This little gem, as the name suggests, is cubic in shape and only about 4cm (not much more than an inch) in length per side and allows you to balance contrast for your shot like no other solution on the market. Despite its size the SpyderCUBE gives you larger blocks of grey to use as targets than most conventional cards, with two of the cube’s faces split between a 96% white and an 18% grey triangle. Provided you can see both of these two-toned sides when the cube is either hung or tripod mounted in the shot, you have a perfect target to set grey balance irrespective of the direction of any lighting or if it’s changing. Once you’ve shot the SpyderCUBE simply choose the lighter of these split sides to use in setting the grey balance and then use the black and white quarters to set your highlights to the 96% white and shadows to a 4% black. Any out-of-gamut scintillation (100% white and over) or 100% shadows should only appear on the ball atop the CUBE or in the hole at the centre of the black face, respectively. The pocketability of the SpyderCUBE means it’s always available to shoot with and doesn’t require a major feat of positioning to

Spyder5 screen calibrator

images safe in the knowledge that ‘what you see is what you get’ at least as far as colour is concerned. Working with soft proofing profiles from your print houses or output devices you’ll be in full control and able to see how your images will output on virtually any combination of paper, ink and printer. For full synchronisation, the SpyderCHECKR comes with plug-in software for most image capture solutions (eg. Adobe Photoshop Lightroom, Adobe Photoshop and Hasselblad Phocus) and enables you to set up a calibration preset with the touch of a button to linearise all your shots. As the software knows what each colour swatch should be, it can instantly calculate calibration across the spectrum to remove casts and bring all colours into alignment in virtually any conditions. Don’t worry though, you don’t need to ask your brides, grooms or models to hold the SpyderCHECKR – as long as you shoot the target at some point in the same lighting conditions that any group of shots is taken in, you can apply the calibration to the whole group later on. For further information visit the website.

Get your colours sorted today!

Before SpyderCHECKR

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Above The SpyderCUBE is a portable, reliable way of calibrating your shoot and thanks to its design it’s easier to place in the scene and more durable than a conventional grey card.

After SpyderCHECKR

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