by Mike McNamee Published 01/03/2003
Welcome to our Architecture Special Edition of Professional Imagemaker. Mindful of a bias towards digital we have decided to push film and large format for a change and just to remind ourselves that there is life in the old dog yet. It occurs to me that some of our readers may never have used a 5x4 camera, certainly most will never have operated a Fuji GX617. Take it from me there is something magical about an image coming through a large format transparency. However, such is the power of Photoshop that if you can't afford a huge amount of chip in your camera you can make a large virtual chip by the simple process of stitching lots of shots together. Image size is not really limited in a practical way although we actually bust Photoshop's 30,000 pixel size limit and hit 4GB when sticking the whole of the Liverpool waterfront together, using more than 20 frames each with its own Layer Mask and Adjustment layer. On a more down to earth level we got the Buttermere pan using 8 shots, each hand held, and lined up by eye, without a tripod. It took a bit more effort at the stitching stage but we got there in under an hour even so.
As with all photography, light is the essential ingredient; reflections of it on the waterfront, streaks of it in Jason Elliot's skyscraper, midnight blue light in Margaret Davison's Lowry and quiet reflected dawn light on Buttermere. Four pictures, vastly different shapes and scenes - all exploiting light, where would we be without it?
In this issue we also take a look at some of the things we found at Focus. As ever it was a delight to see and talk to so many of you on the stand. Business was very brisk in all departments of the operation, with our President, Terry Hansen FSWPP seeing and advising a seemingly never-ending stream of people. There was plenty to see on the equipment front and a direct result is the report this issue on the latest lens offering from Sigma. We have also received the Olympus E20 and Sigma SD9 so you can look forward to the opinions of our testing team next issue.
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