Concept Leica i9 Combines a Leica and an iPhone 4

Leica iPhone.jpg

A new concept camera from Black Design pairs up the Leica rangefinder and the iPhone 4 for what the company calls a "match made in heaven."

The idea is fairly simple to understand - instead of a traditional iPhone case, you'll put your iPhone into a Leica body. You'll use the Leica rangefinder, store images on onboard memory or on an SD card, and you can have the camera on and ready to shoot in less than a second.

This isn't just a fancy looking case though. The camera body doesn't depend on the iPhone 4's processor or built-in camera for pictures. The iPhone contributes a high quality viewscreen, the ability to quickly upload pictures, as well as quick and simple upgrades.

Keep in mind, this is a concept. While it's incredibly interesting, it's also not something that's coming any time soon. Still - it's a fascinating look at what the future may hold.

Album App 1.0 for iPad

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Album App 1.0 for iPad released - New Digital Photo Album Solution
Dreamix Studio introduces Album App 1.0, their brand new digital photo album solution for Apple’s iPad. Easily create extensive photo albums on your iPad. Scale, rotate and move photos with a single touch. Add pages to your album and get creative with the layout, or use one of the 30+ predefined layouts. Album App comes with 5 themes that contain a lot of backgrounds, borders and objects to fill your album. You can expand the app with new themes and buy them from the store.
Arnhem, Netherlands - Everyone knows the iPad works great with photos, but what if you want to show them as a full featured album to your family and friends? Dreamix Studio came up with the solution and created Album App, an app fully focused on creating digital photo albums on your iPad. No more waiting and paying a lot for printing services, or only full screen pictures and endless swiping to view all photos.
Album App lets you easily create extensive photo albums on your iPad. Scale, rotate and move photos with a single touch. Add pages to your album and get creative with the layout, or use one of the 30+ predefined layouts. With only a single tap you select a photo from your photo library and it will auto position on the spot you tapped on.
Album App comes with 5 themes that contain a lot of backgrounds, borders and objects to fill your album. Want more themes? Dreamix got you covered. You can expand the app with new themes and buy them from the store, which will be available very soon. You can preview your album when editing or save and view it trough the main menu. Scroll trough your albums with a swipe gesture and show it to your friends and family, import your pictures directly from Flickr & Facebook and much, much more. All this for just $3.99.
Album App will get more updates with several new features like airplay (view your albums on your TV) or print and reorder your pages. You can vote on your favourite feature or theme on the product website. Dreamix Studio has several updates in mind keep the App as the #1 digital tablet photo album platform.
Device Requirements:
* Compatible with iPad
* Requires iOS 4.2 or later
* 28.3 MB
Pricing and Availability:
Album App 1.0 is $3.99 USD (or equivalent amount in other currencies) and available worldwide exclusively through the App Store in the Photography category.
Headquartered in Arnhem, the Netherlands, Dreamix Studio is a small mobile development company created by two graduated multimedia designers. The company, whose main focus is on iPhone, iPod touch and iPad platforms, implements it own concepts and creates business apps. Copyright (C) 2011 Dreamix Studio. All Rights Reserved. Apple, the Apple logo, iPhone, iPod and iPad are registered trademarks of Apple Inc. in the U.S. and/or other countries.

Fujifilm FinePix HS20 EXR Review

Fujifilm FinePix HS20 EXR Review Image

The Fujifilm FinePix HS20 EXR is a new super-zoom digital compact camera. Looking and handling like a DSLR, the bridge-style Fujifilm HS20 EXR boasts a 30x zoom lens which covers a 35mm equivalent focal range of 24-720mm and also features mechanical image stabilisation and twist-barrel manual zoom and focusing controls. Other highlights of the camera include a 16 megapixel EXR Back Side Illuminated CMOS sensor, a 3-inch tilting LCD monitor, electronic viewfinder with eye-sensor for automatic switching, full 1080p HD movie recording with stereo sound, ISO range of 100-12800, High Speed movie capture at 320 fps, continuous shooting at 8fps, 0.16 second autofocusing, full manual controls and support for the RAW file format. The Fujifilm FinePix HS20 EXR is available now for £399.99 / $499.95 in the UK / US respectively.

Ease of Use

If it ain't broke, don't fix it, seems to be the mantra behind the external design of the new Fujifilm FinePix HS20 EXR, which looks almost identical to the HS10 model that it replaces. Therefore a lot of the comments that we made about that model apply equally to the HS20, which looks, feels and handles very much like a mid-range DSLR. Designed as a do-it-all, all-in-one solution for the serious photo enthusiast, the Fujifilm FinePix HS20 EXR is more than weighty and well built enough to withstand a few glancing knocks in the heat of the action. The moulded curves of the body and matt black finish deliver a purposeful look that is as aesthetically pleasing as it is practical, with nice chunky controls, an ergonomic control layout that allows both quick and easy access to functions, and a deep hand-grip with a well-thought-out indentation into which a middle finger slots comfortably. This is a camera for which you will very much need to use both hands at once.
At the heart of the HS20 EXR is the same frankly incredible non-interchangeable 30x zoom lens as on the HS10, complete with manual zoom and focus rings, just like on a DSLR lens. This incredibly versatile lens offers a focal range starting at an ultra-wide 24mm and finishing at an ultra-telephoto 720mm, which, as Fujifilm cannily point out, would take at least two super-zoom DSLR lenses to offer similar reach. Throw in the 1cm Super Macro Mode and impressive maximum apertures of a bright f/2.8 at 24mm wide-angle to a slightly brighter f5.6 at 720mm telephoto, and it's clear that the HS20 EXR is perfectly suited for any subject that you can think of, near or far.
To help avoid blur resulting from camera shake when shooting in low light or hand-holding the camera at the telephoto extremity of the zoom, Fujifilm have added a 'belt and braces' solution of high ISO sensitivity, stretching up to ISO 12800 at full resolution (JPEG only), a built-in mechanical stabilizer with Continuous or Shooting Only modes, and digital image stabilisation too if required. Activated via the IS Mode menu option, you can set the system to Continuous, Shooting Only, either mode with the addition of digital stabilisation, or Off. Note that the camera will only automatically adjust the ISO speed when using the Auto shooting mode - in the other modes the ISO speed that you select will always be used, so only the mechanical CCD-shift part of the system is used.
Fujifilm FinePix HS20Fujifilm FinePix HS20
Unlike some rivals, the full 30x zoom range also be accessed in the Motion JPEG format movie mode, with the HS20 EXR offering full 1920x1080 pixel footage at 30 frames per second with constantly adjusting auto exposure and focus with stereo sound. There are still few digital compacts that offer 1080p video recording, so the HS20 EXR is a definite camera to consider if movies are your thing. It can record video clips up to 29 minutes long for the 1920x1080 and 1280x720 pixel formats, with longer times available for VGA and SVGA modes. The dedicated Movie button on the rear makes it quick and easy to shoot a movie without missing the start of the action, and there's a mini-HDMI port for connection to a HDTV (cable not supplied). You can select one of the Film Simulation modes to give your footage a more creative look, and there's the option to take a still photo at any time during movie recording.
In addition to these "normal" movie modes, the HS20 EXR also offers several high-speed modes, a feature that was first pioneered by Casio. There are three different speeds on offer - 320, 160 and 80fps, with the file size varying from 320x112 to 640x400 pixels respectively. This slow-motion effect is initially very appealing and sure to impress your friends, but there are some drawbacks to be aware of. Sound isn't recorded at all, horizontal bands can appear as the lighting fluctuates, and the actual sizes of the recorded movies are pretty small.
From the front the Fujifilm HS20 EXR looks like a serious bit of kit. The large optically stabilised zoom lens dominates proceedings, with a push-on lens cap and retaining strap provided in the box. Above the lens and extending out across the lens barrel, which boasts a textured surround allowing you to get a good firm grip and achieve a smooth, steady zooming action, is an attractively sloping ridge that conceals the pop up flash (when not in use), which is activated via a dedicated button positioned on the right. Still viewing the HS20 EXR from the front, the stereo sound speakers are positioned one on either side of the lens barrel, with a familiar dual purpose AF-assist illuminator and self-timer lamp to the left. Above the pop-up flash is another DSLR-like touch - a hotshoe for additional illumination via an optional external flashgun (EF-42 and EF-20 models).
Looking down on top of the camera, viewed from the rear, there's a clearly labeled and logically laid out control set, with a chunky, ridged shooting mode dial which is reminiscent of those found on, yes you've guessed it, DSLR cameras. Ranged around the dial, which turns with just the right amount of resistance for it to lock firmly into place at each setting, are the expected shooting options, such as full auto, program, shutter priority, aperture priority and manual modes, along with a customizable mode via which favoured shooting settings can be saved for rapid access, plus two scene position modes (SP1 and SP2) pre-optimised for common subjects.
Fujifilm FinePix HS20Fujifilm FinePix HS20
Pop-up FlashTop
In addition, there are several more shooting modes that are particularly noteworthy. First up is the EXR Auto mode (one of the four EXR modes), which is an 'auto everything' scene recognition mode that's the equivalent of Panasonic's Intelligent Auto mode. Although far from infallible - if you're not paying close attention and it's presented with a busy scene it will call up landscape when macro is needed and vice versa – it instantly makes the HS20 EXR more beginner friendly, instantly recognising 10 basic scenes and then applying one of the three other EXR modes too.
Fujifilm's EXR sensor can be utilized in one of three ways by the photographer. There's a choice between shooting at full 16 megapixel resolution in High Resolution (HR) mode, or an 8 megapixel image in the Low Noise (SN) mode for shooting without flash in low light conditions, or the Dynamic Range (DR) mode to achieve an optimal balance between shadows and highlights. The latter offers five strengths ranging from 100-1600%. If you can't decide which is best for a chosen scene or subject, then just leave the camera on the scene-detecting EXR Automatic Mode and let it choose for itself.
Next is the rather misleadingly named Advanced mode, which actually has two options that are well suited to all experience levels. The Pro Low-light mode uses multi-bracketing technology, taking a series of four high sensitivity/low-noise shots in quick succession and combining them into an image with less noise than the single exposures. You can see examples of this shooting mode on the Image Quality page. The Pro Focus mode makes it easier to achieve a blurred background, perfect for portraits where compact digicams traditionally struggle, with three strengths of blurring on offer.
The final shooting mode is the Panorama option, clearly inspired by Sony's popular Sweep Panorama function. This lets you capture a 120, 180 or 360 degree panoramic image very easily without the use of a tripod. All you need to decide is whether you would like to start from left or right, top or bottom, then press and hold down the shutter release while doing a "sweep" with the camera in hand. Exposure compensation is available before you start the sweep, with the exposure fixed once you depress the shutter button. After you are done with the sweeping, the camera does all the processing required, and presents you with a finished panoramic image.
Fujifilm FinePix HS20Fujifilm FinePix HS20
FrontTilting LCD Screen
Although undoubtedly fun, there are a few catches. The final panorama is of relatively low resolution, and if you do the sweeping too slowly, or you let go of the shutter release button too early, the panorama will be truncated. If the exposure varies throughout the scene, then some areas will be over or under exposed, depending upon the exposure value that was chosen as the panorama was started. Finally, people and indeed anything that moves in the frame are recorded as several ghost outlines, which means that you can really only record static, empty scenes, something that Sony have solved in the latest iteration of their Sweep Panorama feature.
To the right of the shooting mode dial is a smaller command dial with a positive clicking action which is used for scrolling through features and captured images, and will feel immediately intuitive to anyone who has handled a DSLR before. The same dial is also used to change the aperture and shutter speed when using the more advanced shooting modes. In the Manual mode, you hold the Exposure Compensation button down with your forefinger and give the dial a flick with your thumb to change the aperture, not as intuitive as having two separate command dials but perhaps understandable given the HS20's target audience. Otherwise the exposure compensation button works largely as you'd expect, with a visual slider graph on screen accompanied by a live histogram.
Next to the EV button is the rather innocent-looking Continuous Shooting button, which accesses another of the HS20 EXR's mouth-watering features. Pressing this button brings up four options - Off, Top 4, Best Frame Capture and three different kinds of bracketing (exposure, film simulation mode and dynamic range). Choosing Top 4 allows you to take 8 full-resolution photos at 8 frames per second, which is faster than most compact cameras and indeed most DSLRs too. The only fly in the ointment are that only 4 out of the 8 are actually saved to the memory card. Choosing Best Frame Capture shoots at 11fps at 8 megapixel resolution from the moment that you focus and then saves up to 16 images including pre-recorded frames. Once the burst is completed, it takes over fifteen seconds for the camera to clear the buffer, during which you cannot take another picture. There is also another continuous shooting speeds where the Fujifilm HS20 EXR shoots at a faster speed 11fps at at 4 megapixel resolution for up to 32 frames.
Forward of these two controls is the main shutter release button encircled by the on/off power switch. Flick this to On, and the rear LCD or electronic viewfinder – depending on which one you previously had selected – blinks into life, a process taking around two seconds, which for once is not quite as good as most DSLRs. Still, the Fujifilm FinePix S100FS is very fast to determine focus and exposure with a half press of the shutter button, taking less than 0.20 seconds to lock onto the subject. Although JPEGs are quickly committed to memory in single-shot mode with only the briefest pause between each one, unfortunately there's a very noticeable 5 second delay between the capture of one RAW file and the next during which you can't take another picture, which rather slows down the shooting experience unless you stick to the JPEG format. JPEG or RAW images are committed to SD / SDHC / SDXC cards, although there's no card supplied out of the box, with just the 25MB internal capacity to fall back on.
Moving to the rear of the HS20 EXR, your attention is immediately drawn to the large 3-inch monitor, which offers an improved 100% scene coverage and a better resolution of 460K dots. The HS20 EXR's LCD screen can be moved 90° upwards and 45° downwards to get your shot or aid visibility, but unlike some other cameras it can't be pivoted left nor right, or indeed turned so the screen is protected face-into the body when not in use. While some may debate whether an adjustable LCD is an essential feature or a sales gimmick, once you get used to using one it's something you find yourself missing when it's not there, proving particularly useful when holding the camera above your head or as a waist-level finder for more candid shots.
Fujifilm FinePix HS20Fujifilm FinePix HS20
Memory Card SlotBattery Compartment
To the right of the LCD is a small button for swapping the display between monitor and the 200k-dot resolution electronic viewfinder with 97% scene coverage and surrounding eyecup. The EVF also has its own dioptric correction wheel to its immediate left, which is far less stiff and physically larger than found on competing models, meaning that for the myopic adjustment can be made in a faction of a second. The viewfinder display is itself large, bright and clear, though the temptation to predominantly utilise the more flexible LCD below is almost overwhelming. A welcome addition comes in the form of a sensor which automatically switches between the EVF and viewfinder when you hold the camera up to eye-level, speeding up the transfer from using the LCD to taking a shot through the EVF. Note that his feature can be turned off if you find it annoying.
To the left of the LCD screen is a vertical column of five small buttons which provide direct access to most of the HS20 EXR's key controls, once again mimicking the control layout of several entry-level DSLR cameras. Starting from the top, there are buttons for choosing the ISO speed, metering (multi pattern, spot or average), AF mode (center, multi, area or tracking), AF type (continuous, single shot or manual), and the White Balance. All five buttons also perform actions during image playback, denoted by the blue symbols, resulting in a logical system that provides quick and easy access to most of the camera's key functions.
To the right of the screen is the previously mentioned one-touch movie record button and a self-explanatory AE/AF lock button. Below is a familiar four-way controller with a dual-purpose menu/OK button at its centre. Ranged at north, south, east and west around this control are variously, a means of toggling RAW mode on and off (doubling up as a file deletion button when in playback mode), the various flash modes, the self timer options, and shifting focus from infinity to either macro or super macro.
Press the Menu button in shooting mode and you get a comprehensive choice of options from two main folders., Shooting and Set-Up, with up to 6 screens containing 6 icons per screen. Most of the options are the "set once and forget" kind, so you won't have to dip into the menu system too often. Below the navigation pad is a dual-purpose control marked Display/Back that switches between the various LCD modes and also allows you to retrace your steps at any point. Completing the rear of the HS20 EXR is a self-explanatory playback button for quickly viewing captured images.
The right hand flank of the Fujifilm FinePix HS20 EXR features a flip-open compartment for the SD / SDHC / SDXC card slot, while the left has a rubber flap hiding the HS20 EXR's mini-HDMI port and the regular USB / AV out sockets, plus the camera's built-in speaker. The base of the Fujifilm FinePix HS20 EXR features a screw thread for a tripod, sadly made of plastic and not in line with the lens barrel, and a sliding door hiding the compartment for the four AA batteries stored within the handgrip. Battery life varies from poor with the supplied alkaline batteries to very good with a decent set of Ni-Mh rechargeables, obtaining over 350 shots on one charge (down from 500 on the HS10). There are metal loops either side of the body for attaching the provided strap.

Fantasea Line Launches Nikon Coolpix P7000 Camera & Housing Set

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FP7000 Housing & Accessories
Enahncing underwarer images & videos
Fantasea Line is pleased to introduce the Nikon Coolpix P7000 Camera & Housing Set and a complete line of underwater photo accessories specially designed for the FP7000 Housing.
The Perfect Camera & Housing Bundle Now Available- 
Nikon Coolpix P7000 Camera & Housing Set
(Cat. No. 11181)
Nikon Coolpix P7000 Digital Camera
Fantasea FP7000 Housing (Cat. No. 1118)
Fantasea Eyes - Underwater Optics for the FP7000 Housing
Expected Delivery: June, 2011
BigEye Wide Angle Lens FP7000 (Cat. No. 5136)
A patented wide angle lens for the FP7000 Housing, which fits over the housing port and can be installed and removed during the course of the dive. Perfect for shooting seascape, divers, ship wrecks and schools of fish, without moving further away from the subject, thereby still taking full advantage of water clarity and artificial light sources. 
The BigEye Lens FP7000 introduces a new design, which enables installing color correction filters inside the lens, thereby producing underwater wide angle vivid and colorful images or videos.
SharpEye Macro Lens M67 (Cat. No. 5128)
An accessory macro lens which fits over the housing’s port and can be installed and removed during the course of the dive. It is perfect for shooting close-up images of fish, corals, textures and more. The macro lens magnifies the subject and enables the camera to focus on short distances for creating super sharp images. 
Can be mounted on the FP7000 Housing by using the EyeDaptor FP7000-M67 (Cat. No. 4702).
EyeGrabber Lens Holder FP7000 (Cat. No. 4057)
Attaches to Flex and B&J Arms and allows for secure attachment of optic accessories designed for the FP7000 Housing when they are not in use. Includes a T2 Connector and two different sets of screws, enabling to attach the Lens Holder to any standard Flex or Ball & Joint Arm.
EyeDaptor Lens Adaptor FP7000-F67 (Cat. No. 4702)
Enables mounting any 67mm threaded accessory lenses and filters on the FP7000 Housing, including the SharpEye Macro Lens M67 (Cat. No. 5128).
Color correction inserts can be installed inside a dedicated slot featured on the adaptor, thereby allowing to restore the colors absorbed by water while making use of 67mm lens accessories.
RedEye Color Correction Filter FP7000 (Cat. No. 5211)
A red color correction filter for the FP7000 Housing, which fits directly over the housing lens port or installed on compatible lens accessories. It can be installed and removed during the course of the dive. Used to restore the red color absorbed by blue water and allows for producing vivid and colorful underwater images and videos. In shallow depths, this filter can serve as an attractive alternative to artificial light sources.
PinkEye Color Correction Filter FP7000 (Cat. No. 5212)
A pink color correction filter for the FP7000 Housing, which fits directly over the housing lens port or installed on compatible lens accessories. It can be installed and removed during the course of the dive. Used to restore the pink color absorbed by green water and allows for producing vivid and colorful underwater images and videos. In shallow depths, this filter can serve as an attractive alternative to artificial light sources.
Nano Ray Universal Lighting Sets 
Now Available
Nano Single Ray Set (Cat. No. 2076)
Designed in order to enhance underwater images taken by compact digital camera systems. 
Blue Ray Single Tray
Flex Arm 30 
Nano Flash 
Nano Fiber Optic Cable Kit 
Fantasea Pro Bag
Nano Double Ray Set (Cat. No. 2078)
Designed in order to enhance underwater images taken by compact digital camera systems. 
Blue Ray Double Tray
2 x Flex Arm 30 
Nano Flash
Nano Focus Light 
Nano Fiber Optic Cable Kit 
Fantasea Pro Bag
FP7000 Housing Extreme Video Clip
Nikon Professional Services chasing waterfalls with the FP7000 Housing - MUST SEE!

PhotographyBB Online Magazine Issue #39

News imageThe 39th edition of the free PhotographyBB Online Magazine is now available for download. This month’s edition features tutorials for taking better sports photos and capturing memorable moments, tips for digital photo-art manipulations, an in-depth look at Lightroom’s adjustment brush, a “reader FAQ” on portraiture and lighting, and more. You can download the latest issue of the magazine from the website below.

Razzi Launches

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Razzi is a new photo sharing network that allows photographers to earn ad revenue on their photo views. You can sign up for free, upload your photos (or import them from your Flickr photostream), and enter your Google AdSense Publisher-ID to start earning money. Allowing for unlimited uploads and offering features like drag and drop organisation and access to the original files, Razzi focuses on the social aspects (friend activity stream, notifications, privacy settings etc.) too. The developers of the website have also created an iPhone app for mobile uploads that is currently pending approval in the App Store.

Akvis Retoucher 5.0

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April 28, 2011 - AKVIS announces the release of AKVIS Retoucher 5.0 for Windows and Macintosh. The program restores damaged photos by removing dust, scratches, and stains, and by reconstructing the missing parts of a photo automatically. This version introduces the Spot Remover tool which can remove small imperfections on an image easily. Support for files in RAW format has also been added as well as an OS File Dialog for loading and saving files. For registered users of the previous version the upgrade is free.

Few things in life stir our memories and emotions the way photographs do. But as time goes by, old photographs fade out, get stained, or get otherwise damaged. In order to preserve them, people digitize their photos to pass these cherished images on to future generations.
AKVIS Retoucher restores damaged photographs with minimal effort and amazing results. But this is not the only thing it can do!
AKVIS Retoucher has a wide variety of uses. It can restore old damaged photographs from family archives by removing dust, scratches, and stains, and can reconstruct missing parts of a photo automatically. But it is not just for restoring old photos. It can also improve your newer photos, such as when you want to remove tattoos from a subject.
Defects and details are removed automatically. Just select the areas you want to correct, press run, and watch scratches and other imperfections vanish as if by magic! Take a look at all the things Retoucher can accomplish for you at the Examples page:
The software can also reconstruct the missing parts of a photo using information from surrounding areas, making it possible to restore a photo that has been torn or has some missing parts.
AKVIS Retoucher is a handy tool for improving the composition of your photos. You can remove date stamps, logos, small irrelevant details (wires, refuse bins, etc) and even larger and complex objects (people, cars, buildings, etc).
If you need to increase the canvas size (from one side or proportionally) to bring the main object into focus, AKVIS Retoucher will help you to fill the blank areas of the canvas with appropriate image textures.
Version 5.0 adds the new Spot Remover tool It removes small imperfections (stains, dust, etc) on an image with ease. You can also use it to retouch portraits. It “heals” skin problems with just a click! The new tool is available for Deluxe and Business licenses.
Also new to Version 5.0 is support for files in RAW Format (CRW, CR2, NEF, ARW, RW2, PEF etc).
The program is easy to use and learn. The first time it is opened it will be working in Express mode. This mode displays only the necessary tools, so you can obtain a good result without adjusting many parameters. It is possible to switch to Advanced mode anytime to have all available parameters at hand.
The software is available as a standalone application, as well as a plugin to a photo editor.
The plugin version is compatible with Adobe Photoshop and Photoshop Elements, Corel Painter, Corel Photo-Paint, and Paint Shop Pro. Read more about compatibility here.
The software runs on Microsoft Windows 7/XP/Vista and on Macintosh Mac OS X 10.4-10.6.
The full functional trial version of AKVIS Retoucher is available at the Product page:
AKVIS Retoucher Home license sells for $87.00 USD, downloadable from
Registered users of Retoucher Home/Home Deluxe v.1.0-4.5 and Business v.4.0-4.5 can upgrade to v.5 for free. Just download the new version and re-activate it using your key. Owners of Retoucher Business v.1.0-3.5 will need to pay $19.00 USD for an upgrade to the new version.
Both Home and Business users can enjoy the full line of AKVIS products in the AKVIS Alchemy bundle which offers all 16 programs with a discount of 60%.
Retoucher is also available in the Restoration bundle which includes Retoucher, MultiBrush, and Coloriage for a discount of 83 USD.
AKVIS specializes in development of image processing software and scientific research. The company was founded in 2004 by IT professionals having considerable experience in programming and software development. Since then the company has released a number of successful programs.
* Spring Event: AKVIS Birthday Raffle *
AKVIS announces a raffle in celebration of the company’s Birthday! Participation in this event entitles you to a 20% discount on all AKVIS software as well as a chance to win AKVIS Artistic Bundle.
Enter the AKVIS Birthday Raffle:

Jim Goldberg wins Deutsche Börse Photography Prize 2011

jimgoldbergUS photographer Jim Goldberg has received the 15th Photography Prize organised by The Photographers' Gallery in London in association with Deutsche Börse.

The prize was presented by broadcaster and critic Miranda Sawyer at a ceremony at Ambika P3 at the University of Westminster where the exhibition is held this year.
Each year, the award goes to a living photographer that has made "the most significant contribution, in exhibition or publication format, to the medium of photography in Europe" over the past 12 months.
Magnum photographer Goldberg was nominated for his exhibition Open See, which went on show last year at The Photographers' Gallery. He came ahead of three other photographers and artists - Thomas Demand, Roe Ethridge and Elad Lassry.
Open See "documents the experiences of refugee, immigrant and trafficked populations who travel from war torn, socially and economically devastated countries, such as Iraq, Bangladesh, China, The Balkans and Congo, to make new lives in Europe. Fusing Polaroids, video, written text, ephemera and large and medium format photographs, Goldberg reflects on issues of migration and the conditions for desiring escape."
Brett Rogers, director of The Photographers' Gallery, comments: "Due to the breadth of the Award criteria, the jury felt that any one of the four nominees could have been the winner. They however awarded the Prize to Jim Goldberg for Open See, acclaiming its timely and inventive approach to documentary practice, at the heart of which lies for him co-authorship, a form of creative collaboration allowing these individuals to tell their own stories."
According to Julia Taeschner, head of corporate responsibility for Deutsche Börse, "the Deutsche Börse Photography Prize has once again succeeded in bringing together the most important and interesting representatives of the European photographic scene."
The exhibition is on show until 01 May. It will then go to Berlin from 12 May for six weeks. For more details, visit

Read more: BJP Online

Nikon, Canon to offer support to Royal Wedding photographers

westminster abbeyWith an estimated 327 million photographs to be taken of the Royal Wedding, according to recent research by Nikon, the major manufacturers are ramping up their operations to offer dedicated service points for their professional users from Thursday 28 April.
Nikon is setting up its Service Depot in the Queen Elizabeth II Conference Centre, a few meters away from Westminster Abbey where Kate Middleton and Prince Williams will marry on 29 April.
Nikon Professional Service members will benefit from free camera checks and sensor and lens cleaning services. They will also be able to loan Nikon equipment if needed.
Accredited professional users of Canon will, however, have to reach New Oxford Street, 1.4 miles away to gain access to a complimentary camera sensor clean and check service at the Pro Lounge at Jacobs. Canon users will also be able to have the cameras repaired and borrow equipment on an emergency basis.
Professional service technicians from both manufacturers will be on hand on Thursday 28 April, as well as on the day of the Royal Wedding. Canon and Nikon will also offer free WiFi access for photographers to wire their images before and after the event.
The Nikon Service Depot will be located in the Albert Suite in the Queen Elizabeth II Conference Centre (2nd Floor), opposite Westminster Abbey and will be open from 9.30am - 5.30pm.
Canon Professional Services will be located downstairs in the Pro Lounge at Jacobs, 74 New Oxford Street and will be open from 10am until 6pm on Thursday and 9am until 6pm on Friday.

Read more: BJP Online

Nikon confirms new 50mm f/1.8 prime lens

Nikon afs-50-1
Slated for release on 02 June, the new 50mm standard Nikkor lens with fast f/1.8 aperture will act as the "ideal second lens for curious digital SLR enthusiasts wanting to venture beyond the kit lens and explore the creative possibilities that a fast aperture can offer, including effects such as blurred backgrounds in portraiture and low-light shooting," says Zurab Kiknadze, product manager of lenses, accessories and software at Nikon Europe.

The lens features an all-new optical design with seven elements, including one aspherical, in six groups. It sports a dedicated Silent Wave Motor to ensure discreet but accurate autofocu, and has a weather-sealed metal mount.
The lens has a retail price of £200 (€232).

Blurb launches mobile media story app

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New mobile platform enables anyone to quickly compose and share media stories directly from their iPhone.
London, 29th April 2011 – Blurb, the global creative publishing platform today announced its new mobile publishing application, Blurb Mobile.  Designed to enable easy and fast story creation using rich media content, including photos, videos and audio, the stories can be shared via the author’s existing social networking channels (including Facebook and Twitter), by email, or via their own Blurb channel.
Produced by individuals with a passion for capturing life’s moments, Blurb Mobile stories are engaging, inclusive, fun and instantly sharable. The Blurb Mobile iPhone app enables easy media editing, including rotating, cropping, scaling, and drag and drop sequencing, plus geotagging, which can link the story to a location on a map.  Once the media has been composed, the author can add text and voice captions to each of their images to create a complete and highly personalised narrative. Additional personalisation includes the ability to choose from seven unique visual themes.
By introducing an easy to use, yet powerful interface, a Blurb Mobile story can range from sharing a personal moment with friends and family, to a real-time report from a front-line photojournalist covering breaking news.
“Blurb is known for two things: helping people to tell their stories visually and then enabling them to share their work directly with their audience,” said Eileen Gittins, CEO and Founder,  “To date, the medium of choice has been the printed book; but that’s all changing. With the release of Blurb Mobile, people will now be able to capture life’s great moments – large and small, in wonderfully rich story form and then share their stories on the fly, using any media on their phone including voice, video text and image. All in under 90 seconds.”
Putting media into motion means customers can quickly create, share and view personal stories that use photos, video and audio. Designed to encourage contextual experimentation on the part of the author and discovery by the audience, Blurb Mobile is about entertainment and personal storytelling that can be instantly shared with friends, family, or a broader audience.
“People are hardwired to tell stories.  It’s how we make sense of the world.  But where other photo apps treat images as individual frames, the new Blurb Mobile app enables people to sequence their pictures and video, and then add voice overs and text to form beautiful little stories that can be instantly shared with anyone, anytime,” added Gittins. “And this is just the beginning. We recognize that these stories are inherently social, so you will see our platform evolve to support social elements such as commenting, following, re-sharing and more.”
Currently available on the iPhone, Blurb Mobile is free to download and each customer receives a story channel on to share their stories. In addition, Blurb Mobile Plus provides an in-app upgrade path for customers seeking additional photo, video and audio capability. All stories can be made public or private.

Photo LoL for iPhone

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Photo LoL 1.0.2 - Capture, Retouch and Share Photos on the iPhone
Rusted Gears today announces Photo LoL 1.0.2, a new iPhone photo App created for changing colors and improving pictures. Along with the ability to adjust elements like brightness, saturation and contrast, users can create any look they like by applying effects, changing colors and altering the RGB values. Photo LoL features a great Interface, advanced selection tools, layers system, sharing options for Facebook, Twitter and Random Effects are just a few of the features included in this App.
Bologna, Italy - Rusted Gears today is pleased to announce the release of Photo LoL 1.0.2, a new iPhone photo App created for changing colors and improve pictures. Great Interface, advanced selection tools, layers system, sharing options for Facebook, Twitter and Random Effects are just a few of the features included in this App.
Retouching pictures and photos is easy and funny with Photo LoL. Along with the ability to adjust elements like brightness, saturation and contrast, users can create any look they like by applying effects, changing colors and altering the RGB values. All these options can be applied on the entire picture or can be limited to the parts the users prefer.
Selecting and cropping in Photo LoL are easy but powerful at the same time. Users can choose from three methods or combine them all: a simple Polygonal Mask, the Dropper and the Magic Wand. Applying effects and changing colors is even easier. To simplify the user experience, users can choose between Fast and Advanced Mode.
Using Fast Mode, users can completely change their photo with just one touch. With Advanced Mode, a lot of new settings will appear: users can set HSV, RGB and other filters in the way they desire. The layer system introduced in this App uses the same principles of the professional photo-retouch softwares, so that users will never miss their Computer.
In the next update to Photo LoL, Rusted Gears is planning to add tons of new features, like the landscape orientation, an iPad native version, new languages, fresh effects and more!
Photo LoL features include:
* Iphone 4 retina display support for a shining graphic
* Congenial and simple interface since the first use due to the integrated tutorial
* Powerful tools of selection to operate with great precision on very small spots
* Brightness, tonality, Rgb and Saturation controls
* Key to apply random effects
* Layer Smart system to practice more changing on the same picture without generating confusion or dropouts
* ” Undo ” key to erase wrong selections
* Language menu Italian and English
* File saved in great resolution, pictures will be more real than the original
* Sharing on most popular social network, (Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr) and by mail
* Optimization for old devices to avoid crashes and slowdowns
* Constantly updating
Device Requirements:
* iPhone, iPod touch and iPad
* Requires iPhone OS 3.1 or later
* 13.3 MB
Princing and Availability:
Photo LoL 1.0.2 is $1.99 USD (or 1.59 Euros) for the first month as offer launch, and is available worldwide through the AppStore in the Photography category. There is also on the AppStore a Free Version with Advertisings and other limitations.
Located in Bologna, Italy, Rusted Gears was founded in 2010, and it’s composed by people who love Apple products and aspire to create amazing software for their users. We strongly believe in our mission and we put true passion on everything we create, to deliver the best experience to our customers. Rusted Gears: Awesome apps for awesome people. All Material and Software (C) 2010-2011 Rusted Gears / All Rights Reserved. Apple, the Apple logo, iPhone, iPod and iPad are registered trademarks of Apple Inc. in the U.S. and/or other countries.

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