Editor's Notes

Editor's Notes

Traveling today is less than a charming experience, with apprehension being the general state of affairs. This is, unfortunately, the price we pay for living in the modern world, and we all want to travel knowing that everything has been done to keep things safe. As photographers, we usually have more gear than the average traveler. And with digital many of us now add laptops, battery chargers, and assorted electronic devices to our kit. Luggage can no longer be locked, so checking all of this through, rather than carrying it on, is a chance few of us want to take.
With that in mind, we asked veteran photographer and writer Jack Neubart to take on the task of checking out and reporting on the latest in photo backpacks with an eye on packs that can be carried onto most airlines. Jack surveyed the field and came up with a large selection of products, each with particular features that will appeal to everyone from avid photographers heading out on a dream vacation to pros who have to stow it all when on the road. We think that Jack has delivered an excellent service piece that we know will benefit everyone contemplating his or her next flight.

Also in this issue we feature the work of David Brooks, who has been gracing our pages with his great reports on getting the most from digital scanning, printing, and imaging in general. But here we get a different side of David, where we feature his art and a look at how he practices his craft. David calls this work "Recreations," a subjective creative process that allows him to recreate the image he "saw" when he made the photograph, and how it might be different from what the "objective" lens captured. It's a fascinating look into both the mind of this artist as well as the newfound creative tools digital affords us all. Take the time to read and enjoy David's journey--it's sure to get your creative juices flowing.

Speaking of David, I hope all of you have been availing yourselves of his Digital Help column featured in each issue. David is an amazing source of information on all things digital, especially on the printing and scanning end. As a reminder, you can contact David directly for your Digital Help questions at fotografx@mindspring.com or by snail mail at PO Box 2830, Lompoc, CA 93438.

Monte Zucker delivers great images and information every month in his column, Master Class. This month Monte shares with us a growing trend in wedding photography, the elegant bridal portrait. Although candids have held sway for years, and so-called "wedding photojournalism" has made its mark, Monte posits that it's time that we reconsider revitalizing our wedding business with a return to the "formal," a classic approach that somehow never goes out of style. And keeping with the portrait theme, Steve Bedell explores the ins and outs of photographing groups, always a challenge but also a great opportunity.

On a final note, I'd like to encourage you to take a look at our newly designed website at www.shutterbug.com. You now have easy access to just about every article published in Shutterbug over the past three years, as well as a host of special features, links, and information that we're sure will make your visit worthwhile. Now that we've got the new setup going we'll be adding even more features in the coming year. I'd also like to invite you to join us on two special trips we have planned this year, our Shutterbug/Photographic Alaskan Cruise in late August and our group trip to photokina in Germany this fall, with an exciting exclusive Leica factory tour and sightseeing through southern Germany. You can find details on both excursions in the pages of Shutterbug or on our website.