Every so often one hears the story of an artist’s unique journey to find his voice. Richard Dunwoody’s transition from holding the reins of thoroughbred racehorses to holding professional cameras is one such tale. Born in Comber, Northern Ireland, Dunwoody was 12 when he started riding racehorses and rode in his first race as an amateur in 1982. He turned professional two years later and won his first Grand National on West Tip in 1986.
For the past year or so some industry analysts have been ringing the death knell for digital point-and-shoot cameras and their larger and more sophisticated cousins—the interchangeable-lens mirrorless cameras. The narrative goes like this: As camera phones become more and more advanced, and offer a wider array of photocentric accessories, compact cameras and mirrorless models will fall by the wayside. Professionals and “serious” photographs will stick with full-size “system” DSLRs, while everyone else will grab a smartphone when they wish to take a photograph.
The results of the 57th Annual World Press Photo Contest were just announced and the winning images provide a visual treat for anyone who loves photography. The winners were selected from almost 100,000 photos submitted by almost 5,800 hundred photographers from 132 nationalities.
The New Zealand Antarctic Heritage Trust recently discovered and restored a treasure-trove of century-old cellulose nitrate negatives left behind by the ill-fated Ross Sea party when they were rescued after spending three years struggling to survive on Ross Island after their ship broke loose from it’s moorings and blew out to sea. The small box of 22 unprocessed negatives were part of more than 10,000 objects conserved at Captain Robert Falcon Scott’s hut and brought back to New Zealand by the Trust and painstakingly restored.
In perhaps an unfortunate sign of the times, we recently learned that an unauthorized telemarketer has illegally obtained a portion of Shutterbug’s subscriber file and is contacting readers in a fraudulent attempt to collect funds for past, current or future subscriptions. We’ve heard from a number of angry readers, upset by the rude, harassing (and illegal) telephone calls from someone they perceived to be one of our authorized subscription representatives.
I just read an amusing piece by a tech blogger and self-proclaimed photography expert who worried about an impending demise of the interchangeable lens digital SLR camera. I say “amusing” because the basis for his concern was a recent Wall Street Journal report indicating that DSLR shipments could fall 9% by the end of this year as compared to a year ago. From this, the prognosticator made the cognitive leap that “smartphones are likely the culprit when it comes to the declining fortunes of the DSLR market.”
I was recently reading about American documentary photographer and photojournalist Dorothea Lange and was reminded of one of my favorite quotes, in which she said “The camera is an instrument that teaches people how to see without a camera.” Afterward, I thought it might be fun to take a look at what other luminaries have said about our craft.
Everyone who loves photography should pick up a copy of the October issue of National Geographic magazine—a special edition devoted to “The Power of Photography” and a celebration of the publication’s 125th Anniversary. Unveiled in October, 1888 as the official journal of the non–profit National Geographic Society, this iconic brand dedicated to funding science and exploration across the globe has inspired countless photographers.
The visual arts world has lost a rare visionary with the recent passing of renowned photographer, educator, essayist and critic Allan Sekula. Acclaimed for his unique, multidisciplinary approach, Sekula devoted his life to writing, photography and film, and encouraging scholars and students to think critically about how the visual arts interact with the social and political realities of our time.
There’s an intriguing rumor making the rounds that, if true, could dramatically alter the way in which photographers interact with wireless devices like smartphones, tablets and laptops. According to Sony Alpha Rumors, a typically reliable source of information regarding future digital imaging technology from Sony, we may soon see the unveiling of a high-quality lens featuring WiFi connectivity, a built-in imaging sensor and its own power source.