David B. Brooks Blog
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David B. Brooks Blog
David B. Brooks Blog Oct 03, 2010 0 comments

Personal introspection, thinking about who you are and why you are that way, has a bad name in America, it’s like “gazing at your belly button”. In other words American culture is outer directed and tends towards the practical. People should not waste time thinking about themselves, do something useful. But then, can you answer the question of why you like this and not that? Do you know why you enjoy taking pictures of some subjects and others don’t interest you. That is a part of you just as much as anything is, yet you take it for granted and give it little thought.

David B. Brooks Blog
David B. Brooks Blog Oct 15, 2010 0 comments

In just a few days after the November Shutterbug hit the streets, I have received 3 questions reacting to the following comment I made in Digital Help, "That you are working with Microsoft Vista, considering it does not support using a color managed display, is also curious." This is not the first time I have said as much about Microsoft Windows Vista since I first reported on the operating system in 2007.

David B. Brooks Blog
David B. Brooks Blog Oct 17, 2010 0 comments

A Shutterbug reader, Tracy Valleau, e-mailed me suggesting I take a look at the Dell Ultrasharp U2410 LCD display. I did and found it to be one I can recommend for digital photography. I purchased one to test and for my own personal use. This Dell U2410 is a 24 inch widescreen LCD display with 1920x1200 pixel resolution. What makes it suited to digital photography and professional graphics is its wide color gamut of 96% of Adobe RGB and its white luminance is adjustable to 80-90.0 CD/m2 providing a high reproduction screen image quality. Its 12-bit internal processing assures a smooth rendition of tones on-screen that’s in a bezel and stand that is sturdy but light with an excellent design that’s carefully manufactured. In all respects this Dell Ultrasharp U2410 is much more affordable at a list price of $599 while entirely competitive with more expensive brands favored for a color managed digital photography workflow.

David B. Brooks Blog
David B. Brooks Blog Nov 01, 2010 0 comments

When I am not doing something for a column, article or testing equipment and software, I relax at night watching movies and some occasional TV dramas. The most recent I found fascinating because it was about photographs, but thankfully there was not a badly cast photographer role in the piece. Nothing like the famous Michelangelo Antonioni blow-up with David Hemmings, Sarah Miles and Vanessa Redgrave, which I am sure inspired many to become photographers, sadly. This is another British drama that is about photographs, not people who make photographs or who model for photographs. It is a 3 part BBC Masterpiece Drama called Shooting The Past. And it s really about a huge collection of photographs whose future is in doubt and the mystery of the story.

David B. Brooks Blog
David B. Brooks Blog Nov 03, 2010 0 comments

Many of you have mentioned printer profiles as a part of your digital photo workflow. Sometimes it is a problem that you find you have to work around. And most of you have a computer with a calibrated and profiled display, as well as often one of the many flatbed scanners I have reported on in recent years. You may even have Lasersoft Silverfast software to run your scanner. That’s all to the positive side towards getting a way to profile your printer, you are part way there already. That includes the Epson Perfection photo scanners, the Canon Canoscan photo scanners and all the recent Microtek photo scanners as well as the Artixscan M1.

David B. Brooks Blog
David B. Brooks Blog Nov 07, 2010 0 comments

For too long there have been few LCD displays available that fully support a digital photographic color managed workflow. Now LaCie has added another, their 324i with desirable specifications in a P-IPS 10-bit 24 inch LCD display. The screen image should be sharp and detailed too with a 1920x1200 pixel resolution. Most important of course is its color range that is specified at 98% of Adobe RGB. But these days with ultra-lite and flimsy un-adjustable home-office LCD displays in the box stores, the LaCie 324i has a solid, full-featured stand and supports portrait orientation. Like any good, current LCD display the LaCie has a wide range of input connector options like Display Port, DVI and HDMI.,BR.

David B. Brooks Blog
David B. Brooks Blog Nov 13, 2010 0 comments

Up until now software products have been dominated by elephantine applications like Microsoft Office Suite and Adobe Photoshop. Software companies have made them huge, full of functions and features one individual may never need or want; but to get the essential core you need you have to buy an expensive package. I need some of both of these huge applications but never use more than a fraction of what they contain, and of course have to buy the whole to get just the part I need. This is an advantage to the companies that own these monopolies, but not to the individual users.

David B. Brooks Blog
David B. Brooks Blog Nov 15, 2010 0 comments

Usually I do not write about things I read in others writing I receive in RSS feeds. But a blooming new creativity interest using flatbed scanners is something I could not resist. It is called scanography, using a flatbed scanner as if it were a digital camera to take digital pictures of 3D objects. So considering a lot of photographers have flatbed scanners these days, how about getting more use out of it to create photographs when it is too cold and nasty to go and shoot your camera outdoors? You can easily take a look at what others are doing with their scanners by visiting a web site all about it at: http://www.scannography.org. In this new web site you will find there is a Scannography.org .PDF file you can download that provides a detailed look at the work of many people using scanners as cameras with lots of fascinating examples of their images.

David B. Brooks Blog
David B. Brooks Blog Nov 23, 2010 0 comments

I just received one of many statements from photographers that the current digital technology is complex and confusing, so it’s hard to understand. I could assume from that many think digital follows what analog film photography established. But that also assumes that the photographic process was understood as it has been for over a century, but sadly both assumptions are mixed up by many mythical and fantastic ideas and beliefs that have confused many if not most for as long as the 50 some years I’ve been a photographer. And it has not been helped by an industry and technology that now uses terms like resolution, which on film meant how fine the detail was resolved sharply, to its digital meaning that defines the size of an image in pixels.

David B. Brooks Blog
David B. Brooks Blog Dec 02, 2010 1 comments

Most of the dream cameras I have read about concentrate on mechanical attributes of the camera itself. Actually in that vein, I want something very practical, not dreamy.These days of course digital and with a large image sensor, but not quite fill-frame. A 3:4 aspect ratio would suite me better. As for a lens, I would be happy with a modest, fixed (not interchangeable) modest speed zoom with a focal length range equivalent to a 35mm camera a 24 to 150mm range, but with a true macro focus capability at about the equivalence of 80mm. Auto-focus is now quite reliable, so my desire would be to have an efficient and comfortable zoom, optical viewfinder. And even an LCD viewer on the back of the camera I find is not needed if it is replaced with a plug in 7 inch tablet screen. Of course this plug-in screen should be made with a built in folding shade, and has its own separate battery power.

David B. Brooks Blog
David B. Brooks Blog Dec 16, 2010 0 comments

It is what you see on-screen that allows you to perceptually adjust and change a digital photograph. I have said what I believe to be true, if you can’t see it, you cannot control it. So I have thought of all things computer, the display is the most important part for digital photographers. However, some think I make too much of it, but then the display gets me more questions in my mail than any other subject.

David B. Brooks Blog
David B. Brooks Blog Jan 03, 2011 4 comments

The holiday season this time provided me with some time to concentrate on personal photographs that have been on my mind, but only as ideas. This year I have not had any article projects pending or new products to investigate, so once in a very long time I am doing my own thing. And that has been digging out old film images and making new scans. The goal is to approach the image in ways that correct for weaknesses and frustrations in what the photo was as a film image. Primarily it is much more than just physically scanning the film, but rethinking the image, applying a different sensitivity to what it is, and hopefully producing something both different and the same, but better than the picture I first saw in the viewfinder, and then as an image on film. The final step in this process is to make a test print to see if my on-screen editing actually results in a print that matches my expectations.

David B. Brooks Blog
David B. Brooks Blog Jan 15, 2011 0 comments

Each year starts off these times with the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas the city of sad faces. Last year even CES was sad faces feeling the aftermath of recession and no one buying much of anything. But in 2011 after Apple dropped some bombs of super sales of iPhones and their new iPad, the rest of the flock was flapping their wings to catch up. But new 3D and what have you TV’s were still languishing, maybe everyone who can afford a big flat-screen TV already has one, and with TV getting worse every year with dumber and dumber ridicule and more ads....

David B. Brooks Blog
David B. Brooks Blog Jan 29, 2011 37 comments

I posted a Blog on December 16, 2010 titled What Is Display Calibration & Profiling? There were a number of comments posted and several were questions. So I asked our blog expert if there was any practical way for me to obtain copies of the comments and the address of the comment source. The answer was no.

David B. Brooks Blog
David B. Brooks Blog Feb 07, 2011 0 comments

The other day I received an e-mail press news release about a new handheld light meter. I had not seen any news of handheld light meters in some time, so of course I read it. In style and content it was much like what I probably read twenty years ago. But what struck me strangely, now that virtually all cameras are digital, is the fact a digital camera is really just a light measuring device that records the light readings of millions of pixel sites and records them in an image file. Of course that does not preclude the value of a narrow angle spot or an incident light meter, they are useful in measuring the light on and from a subject to make an informed decision on making a photographic exposure with digital or on film.