Posts Published in May 2010

Time-Lapse of an Empty Los Angeles

Running on Empty” by Ross Ching is a neat time-lapse video inspired by Matt Logue’s empty L.A. project, which we featured last year. Rather than individual photographs in which ordinarily busy LA streets are artificially devoid of any cars and people, the video takes it a step further by stringing together such photographs to create an eerie (yet soothing and beautiful) glimpse into an LA in which streetlights blink above “I am Legend”-esque roads. I wonder how long post-processing took…

Hoya Founder’s Grandson Calls Pentax Acquisition One Of Company “Failures”

According to  Hoya founder Shigeru Yamanaka’s grandson, Yutaka Yamanaka, Hoya’s acquisition of Pentax may not have been the best business move. The younger Yamanaka said the $1 billion acquisition in 2007 was made mostly to expand Hoya’s involvement in medical optics, but turned out to be “overpriced.” Yamanaka, a Hoya shareholder, went so far as to say it was one of Hoya’s business “failures” which led to financial turbulence over the last three years until Pentax turned profitable.

In spite of Yamanaka’s disapproval of the Pentax purchase, it’s rumored that other companies might be interested in buying up Hoya’s unwanted acquisition. Canon Rumors reports that Canon attempted to buy Pentax, perhaps in order to control more of the DSLR marketshare, in direct competition with Sony. Sony may also be interested in Pentax’s user base. But so far, no word on whether Hoya’s ready to hand off Pentax anytime soon.

(via Bloomberg)

EyeSeeCam Tracks Your Gaze to Capture What You See

You’ve probably seen head-mounted cameras that capture point-of-view photos or videos before, but EyeSeeCam takes the POV concept to a new level. It’s a unique gaze-driven camera that focuses on whatever your eyes are looking at, making it the first camera system that records what your eyes are actually looking at. Here’s a demonstration of what the setup currently looks like in action:

Here’s a video created by the camera system showing the wearer reading a book:

Imagine the possibilities of this technology if it were made compact and ultra-portable. In a few years we might be beaming our personal memories to some data storage service for future reference. Rather than telling stories of our youth to grandchildren, we could show them the memories themselves.

Can you think of any interesting or useful applications of this technology if it were made more practical?

The Most Interesting Photographer in the World

Here’s a funny twist on the popular “most interesting man in the world” beer commercials by Dos Equis — Luc Welch over in the photo.net forums has posted some facts about “the most interesting photographer in the world“:

He’s photographed lions… from the inside
When NASA had to repair the Hubble… they borrowed his lens
He built his first camera when he was five… out of a toaster
His portfolio has been known to stop wars
He photographed a sunset once… it waited for him
His list of clients include Bigfoot, Santa Claus, and those little grey aliens

He is… the most interesting photographer in the world…

I don’t always shoot film, but when I do… I prefer Dos Chromas. Keep shooting, my friends.

If you’ve never seen these commercials before, you can go check them out on YouTube.

Wikipedia also has a list of facts about him:

He can speak French… in Russian.
His personality is so magnetic, he is unable to carry credit cards.
He once had an awkward moment, just to see how it felt.
His charm is so contagious, vaccines have been created for it.
His organ donation card also lists his beard.
The police often question him just because they find him interesting.
He is the only man to ever ace a Rorschach test.
His mother has tattoo that reads ‘Son’
Alien abductors have asked him to probe them.
Bulls flat out refuse to fight him.

Do you “know” any other “facts” about the most interesting photographer in the world? If so, leave a comment and we might include your fact in this post!

Canon L Lens Red Ring Tattoo Only for Die Hard Enthusiasts

Flickr user Plan_9 wanted both a Canon tattoo and a wristband tattoo, so he decided to get a Canon L Lens red ring around his wrist. The next step might be to include some aperture and focal length information on his knuckles. If you decide to get a similar tattoo, you’d better be pretty set on sticking with Canon.

What would a similar tattoo for a Nikon fan be?

Creative Stop-Motion Video Revisits Classic NES Games

“NES Stop Motion” is an amazing stop motion video by YouTube user bornforthis43 that took over 120 hours to produce. Each scene was created using paper and ordinary household objects, and over 7,000 photographs went into making this 3 minute long stop-motion video. The result is a video that should deliver a healthy dose of nostalgia to people who enjoyed gaming on the NES back in the 80s and 90s.

MIOPS: Smartphone Controllable High Speed Camera Trigger

MIOPS is a new smartphone-controlled camera trigger that combines all of the features photographers want in a high-speed camera trigger into one convenient device.

Read more…

Photographer Claims Daily Mail Stole TwitPic Photos

Earlier this month, the Daily Mail published some photos taken at a Dalston polling station during the British General Election by Emily James of Just Do It.

James’ photos were originally uploaded via TwitPic. Later, they were republished on several other sites, including The Guardian and Times Online, initially without permission or compensation. However, The Guardian and Times both offered James retroactive compensation. The Times offered £250 for using one photo, along with a brief emailed apology for using the image without permission.

The Daily Mail, however, initially incorrectly credited the image to someone else, then removed the credit line altogether.  James sent them with an invoice for £1170 — a rate set at £130 and multiplied by three per image to compensate for their lack of knowledge or permission.

The picture editor at the Daily Mail responded, saying:

Thanks for the invoice.

Unfortunately we cannot pay the amount you have requested, these images were taken from twitpic and therefore placed in the public domain, also after consultation with Twitter they have always asked us to byline images by the username of the account holder.

We are more that happy to pay for the images but we’ll only be paying £40 per image.

James, aware of the difference between TwitPic and Twitter Terms of Service, responded to the Daily Mail:

I’m afraid that you are wrong about the terms of publishing on Twitpic. If you read the terms of service you will see that copyright is clearly retained by the poster:

http://twitpic.com/terms.do

Third parties who wish to reproduce posted images must contact the copyright holder and seek permission.

You should have contacted me if you wanted to use the photos, as every other news outlet did. had you done so, you might have been in a position to get the photos for £40’s each.

However you didn’t contact me, even though this would have been very easy to do, nor did you inform me that you had used them. Instead, I had to uncover that you had used them, that one of them was not credited even with the correct twitter account, and that none were credited as I would have asked them to be.

James and the crew at Just Do It Films say they are still waiting for full payment and an apology.

This seems to be a similar issue that photojournalist Daniel Morel has with news agency AFP over whether images distributed over TwitPic and Twitter warrant free public distribution.

(via British Journal of Photography)

Geotaggers’ World Atlas Shows Where Photos Are Snapped in Major Cities

The Geotaggers’ World Atlas is an interesting series of images by Eric Fischer that shows city maps overlaid with points indicating that a photograph was taken there. The location data was obtained from Flickr and Picasa, and the resulting images are heat maps of popular photography locations.

San Francisco

New York City

London

Paris

Berlin

To see additional cities, head on over to Flickr to check out the Geotaggers’ World Atlas set.

Useful Tool for Looking Up the EXIF Data of Online Photographs

Here’s a useful tool you might want to bookmark: findexif.com. It has a super simple web interface in which you simply paste a URL to a photograph in order to display the EXIF data embedded in the image. It should work for any photograph that hasn’t had the EXIF stripped out for some reason, and can be a great way for you to learn how certain images were made. Here’s an example page showing the EXIF data of a photograph I made a while back.

Update: Jeffery’s Exif viewer is another neat web-based tool for showing EXIF data. Thanks @Getcolormanaged!

Breathtaking Time-Lapse Views of Tokyo

Get up and go is a short 2 minute video by Stefan Werc that gives you a unique perspective of Tokyo at night. The time-lapse shots range from epic shots of the skyline, to creative shots from moving vehicles. The stills that went into this time-lapse were shot using the Canon 7D. Great work Stefan!

Update: The song is “Get Up and Go” by Broadcast 2000.