Wingardium Leviosa! Trick photography need not be tricky, if you see what I mean, as long as you know the trick to it. There were books. surfers and people flying everywhere, macro photography on water sprayed cd’s, there was certainly enough to keep people busy and there were quite a few of us there. Levitation photography doesn’t seem to lack for fans. Your images will require some planning and some post production.
The trick of course is to combine two or more images specifically using a feature you will find in most if not all editing programmes known as layers. For this you will need an editing programme like Photoshop, Photoshop Elements, Gimp, and so on. The idea behind layers is that it is building a composite image by putting details on different levels (layers) to make an overall picture. It is rather like making a picture out of a wedge of transparencies on which you put different details on different transparencies then view the whole picture by looking at all the transparencies stacked together. The advantage of this is that it is non destructive to the original picture, that is you can take them all away and the original image is left unaltered. Although each programme has a slightly different way of handling layers the principle and the effects remain the same.
We had books levitating and people surfing, the way to make the final image is the same. Combine your images and get rid of the detail that doesn’t belong in the final image you have in mind. There are a whole stack of levitation tutorials on the web, including this one from Practical Photoshop. Though it uses Photoshop the principle remains the same and their are only slight tweaks as far as the specific software operations.
We also had some close up photography using a mirror, black background, cd’s, water, a Mk 1 Ford Escort (model of) water and some LED lights and a little imagination! All together it was a fun evening and I look forward to seeing the results. Club thanks to everyone who helped organise this.
Meanwhile the Getty Image controversy gathers steam. Why does it matter? In a way it isn’t to do with the images it is everything to do with the intellectual property. Back last year Johnathan Klein, CEO and co-founder of Getty Images started a media campaign calling for new economic models. This argument has already been taking place in books and music. Income generated by images sold through agencies has been declining as the traditional markets, especially print, have been impacted by the growth of digitial publication. The argument is increasingly around, not just the licensing of a particular image for another to use in a publication of some description, but also there is now a question of a whole set of revenue being generated by the use of that image as part of an article, blog, etc. For an example of this look at what Google have done via You Tube by taking the space they create for others to post videos to generate revenue via paid for advertising and the notion of fair use.
Getty are going down this route for very specific type (Not for Profit) customers with some 35 million images. This is not a storm in a tea cup. Photography as a profession is being transformed by digital platforms no less than any other industry with the added dimension that cameras are nearly as ubiquitous as mobile phones, thanks to the integration of the two technologies. Some fear it will force a lot of photographers out of work, some think that this was always coming. The other big agencies may well follow suit, Alamy, Corbis, along with Getty (who also own iStockphoto) form a very large part of the market. Individual photographers will, some think, have to move from being producers to being brands, with associated costs in time effort and money that would otherwise have gone into the business of taking and selling photographs going into not just marketing but into property rights management. No longer selling photographic services professional photographers at a basic level will have to sell their brand a lot more effectively because they will be directly in competition with the brands of the likes of Getty Images, from whom, it is feared, the income will decrease.
This week (20th) Judging of the photo marathon – Your camera club needs you!
24th March visit to the (military) camera club at Shrivenham.
Subjects to do with or beginning with or having to do with the letter A are the subject of the Flickr competition (and no that doesn’t mean A camera, A car, A sandwich – well not necessarily).
This week’s creative round of the competition – entries for the fourth and final open round due by next Thursday – provoked a conversation around the issue of whether we need a judge. We thought we did, the judge differed, reportedly, though he was out running, which is a fine zero carbon option for transportation, unfortunately, it didn’t get him to St Anne’s on time. Indeed at all. Our thanks to Ian and Julie for their hours of organising and commiserations that it was nearly all for nought. Not quite though, for it was decided that we would go to that worst of all systems (apart from every other one that has been tried – at least according to Mr W.S. Churchill) and hold a democratic vote to decide. So judging without the feedback. There are arguments around bringing in outside judges into club competitions for sure and I wonder whether the results were any different as the images submitted were strong as ever but, again few in number. The more you enter the more you are going to get feedback on. The more you act on that feedback the more you will improve – OK this was a bad week to make a good point. Results will be posted when available.
It, has, though, been a busy week. The Photo Marathon practical, yet again thanks to Ian and Julie, was held last Sunday based at the Severn Stars. It was well attended and proved a fascinating challenge. The ten categories, or for you 90’s aficionados, “Things that make you go Hmmm” were:
Entry number; parallel; full circle; exit; black and white; old school; drama; secret; lost and Superpower.
It was a reasonable start and a baffling end for me, but then I’d only had four hours sleep before I had to be up and out (well that’s my excuse), but I finished and so I think did everyone else. The results, again by popular acclamation, will be judged on March 20th. Must say I enjoyed the challenge, as did everyone else I spoke to.
Further to the week before last Four on getting Published, Getty Images, in an effort to combat, or at least ameliorate, the effects of image piracy (as they would have it, the more cynical would say monetise at the expense of the less favoured but greatest number of contributors) announced a not so small change with a BIG BIG potential impact for freelancers and contributors, discussed here in last Friday’s Guardian. Basically they are making 35 million images royalty free in turn for the embed code in your website that links to their image bank. Well they say to their image bank but once it is there it will be to anything they choose, like adverts, videos or other images, it is speculated in Andrew Hern’s article, and certainly you agree to the trawling of your visitor’s information by Getty and/or it’s licensed third parties by using it.
This matters because Getty is the largest provider of images to the market and where they lead others will likely follow. Interviewed in Forbes Magazine, Shutterstock CEO Jon Oringer strongly disagrees with this viewpoint, saying that the images are only for not-for-profit and Getty reserve the right to run their own advertisements – though one wonders what that might involve for when Getty choose something that goes against the NFP’s stance on a matter. In more depth the British Journal of Photography are running series of articles on this, the first of which was published on March 5th.
This coming Thursday a PRACTICAL! Bring your camera, tripod, flashes, crash helmets as necessary for an evening on trick photography.