Colin Smith got his hands on a Blackmagic eGPU and put it to the test with his 2017 MacBook Pro running Photoshop, Lightroom, and Premiere Pro.
When he tested applying a complex preset to 49 photos, Smith actually found that using the eGPU was actually slower than just simply using his MacBook Pro (14.73 seconds vs 9.78s).
Applying a Radial Blur filter to a massive panorama was slightly (but almost inconsequentially) faster when using the eGPU (27.52 seconds vs 28.34s).
It was the same story with other features tested: there wasn’t much of a speed gain when using the new eGPU.
But there’s a reason for this: your graphics card isn’t actually as important for running Photoshop and Lightroom as other components in your computer, namely the CPU, RAM, and SSD (which is much faster than a traditional HDD).
Adobe has a couple of helpful FAQ pages on how Photoshop and Lightroom leverage a graphics processor. What you’ll find is that there’s a small and limited subset of features that are accelerated by having a better graphics card.
For Photoshop it’s things like Camera Raw (certain functions), Image Size (Preserve Details), Select Focus, Blur Gallery, Smart Sharpen, Perspective Warp, and Select and Mask (OpenCL accelerated).
For Lightroom Classic CC, a GPU will speed up adjusting images in the Develop module, rendering images in Library (Grid, Loupe, and Filmstrip), and working with ultra-high-resolution displays (e.g. 4K and 5K).
But for all the other features and functions of Photoshop and Lightroom, you won’t see any meaningful gains. What’s more, neither Photoshop and Lightroom take advantage of having multiple graphics processors connected, and having multiple GPUs with conflicting drivers can actually cause issues with accelerated features.
“I did mention on my video that I hope to see more support in the future,” Smith tells PetaPixel. “I’m talking with folks at Adobe to get more info on what to expect for the future. At this point, I don’t think it matters ‘whos to blame’ for the lack of support, but more, ‘is this something that will help users of Photoshop and LR Classic right now?’”
So if you’ve been eyeing the shiny $699 Blackmagic eGPU for speeding up your photography work, you may want to spend your money on other hardware upgrades instead. The Blackmagic eGPU wasn’t designed to improve Photoshop and Lightroom for photographers — instead, it’s geared toward professional video programs that are able to take advantage of the eGPU for more core features.
Maybe you’re a beginner, just got your first camera, and you’re trying to learn to navigate the world of photography. Or you’ve been photographing for a while, but you’re looking for something different, something new. How do you decide the best direction for your photography? How do you find that photographic genre that really clicks with you, that makes you want to keep venturing out of the house, keep improving?
This can be a tough problem. Newcomers to a photographic genre aren’t necessarily aware of the benefits and drawbacks of that genre. But as you gain experience, you start to understand what that type of photography is all about, and maybe you wish you had known some of those things at the beginning…
Why shoot macro?
I’m primarily a macro photographer. And, after a few years of practice, I’ve noticed certain characteristics of macro photography that make it distinct from other photographic genres. Aside from the whole, “We shoot small things” bit, I mean. These might not be obvious to the newcomer but can become significant in the long run. So I’ve compiled a list: six reasons why you should be a macro photographer.
Before I begin, a quick note: if you find all (or some) of these reasons appealing, then maybe macro photography is the thing for you. And if that’s the case, I encourage you to subscribe to this blog, where I will be offering a number of things over the coming months (totally free!).
For instance, I’ll be offering instructional content, both for the beginning and the more advanced student of macro photography, in which I take you through techniques that will help you grow as a photographer. I’ll also be offering photographic exercises, assignments, and challenges, designed in response to some of my struggles–so that you can improve faster than I ever did. And I also intend to take a very hands-on approach to this blog. At various points, I will encourage readers to submit photos to me, for comments and critiques–again, totally free, no caveats! Helping others to grow as photographers is simply something that I enjoy.
So, without further ado: six reasons why you should become a macro photographer!
1.) The locations are accessible
Unlike many genres of photography, macro photography subjects can be found within minutes of your home. Flowers, trees, shrubs, insects: these are the ideal subjects for a macro photographer, and they exist all around us. It might be as easy as stepping out into your garden or walking up the street to the neighborhood park.
Even if you can’t think of a good location off the top of your head, try a Google search for local parks and nature areas. If you’re lucky, maybe you even have nearby botanical gardens. Wherever you are, I can almost guarantee that you can find some excellent places to shoot.
2.) Macro photography requires minimal planning
Just want to find some subjects and start shooting? Then macro photography may be the thing for you. Not only are good locations easy to find, but there’s not much advance scouting or detailed planning required for a shoot; you can do macro photography in several different types of weather, and the flowers will stick around, regardless of the time of day, regardless of the crowds. With macro photography, it can really just be about getting up and out! Of course, certain subjects may require more careful preparation–but in general, this isn’t something that has to be on the macro photographer’s mind.
Certain forms of photography can be quite physically demanding. For instance, it’s not unusual for the bird photographer to spend several hours crouched in the mud, crawling towards that elusive sandpiper on their elbows and knees.
Macro photography? Not so much.
Once you’ve found your subject, you’re free to explore it from various angles. Standing, sitting, kneeling, lying down; all of these are potential points of view for the macro photographer, and you can choose as many or as few as you like.
Are there advantages to spending time on the ground like a contortionist, attempting to make that subject go in front of that background? Certainly. But is it necessary? Absolutely not.
4.) You can do macro photography as part of a social outing
If you’re a busy person (as most of us are) you may have trouble carving out time to actually do photography. You’re working, have kids, trying to keep up a decent social life…Maybe you wonder if you really have time for a hobby.
Well, the thing is: macro photography doesn’t have to be intense, involved, solitary. Macro photography doesn’t require hours of waiting or long journeys off the grid. Nope! As follows from Reason 1 and Reason 2, macro photography can be done while having a walk in the woods, or at the park. Which also happen to be ideal locations for social outings. Try bringing a friend along!
Don’t get too caught up, though! Otherwise, your friend might decide that you’re an unresponsive conversation partner, and choose to pursue other relationships…
5.) Macro photography can be done in the middle of the day
Many types of photography–especially nature photography–are best done during the “golden hours”: early morning and late afternoon. But for some of us, these aren’t the ideal times to be out and about. During the week, we’re too busy, and during the weekend, maybe we want to sleep in, maybe we’ve got things going on.
Which is no problem for the macro photographer.
See, you can get fantastic macro images with a rather common type of midday weather: cloudy skies. When those clouds roll in, the light becomes diffused and soft–which is ideal for capturing evenly lit images of flowers and small nature scenes.
And you don’t have to ruin that nice long weekend sleep-in to get it.
6.) Macro photography gets you out and in nature
Over the course of our lives, we can get caught up in our social calendars, our jobs, the fast pace of technology. We find ourselves spending more time in the work cubicle, or in front of the computer. We find ourselves getting outside less and less…
But macro photography will give you that push. It’ll force you outside, make you start taking walks, breathing in that fresh air. Carefully observing the trees and flowers. Appreciating nature.
Even if you feel that this isn’t something that you want at the moment, I encourage you to try. Sometimes, it takes actually doing an activity before you realize how much you need it.
When I do macro photography, it can be almost meditative. Because it forces me to take a second, to stop, to think about the natural world that exists around us. To figure out how to communicate it through a single image.
It’s powerful stuff and makes me feel more at peace.
To sum up…
Macro photography is an excellent path to follow. The subjects are easy to find, the conditions needed are flexible, and it’ll be good for your overall well-being.
Of course, even if you find none of these reasons appealing, you may still like macro photography. Maybe you want to spend time searching for locations off the grid, or you want to stretch your body to its limits. The thing is, macro is a flexible genre. There are opportunities to take it in many different directions. Just because something isn’t required doesn’t mean it can’t be done.
So I encourage everyone to give it a try. It may be just the thing you need…as you start your photographic journey.
About the author: Jaymes Dempsey is a nature, macro, and bird photographer based in Ann Arbor, Michigan. The opinions expressed in this article are solely those of the author. You can find more of his work on his website, Flickr, Facebook, and Instagram. This article was also published here.
A new drone video has emerged that has people shaking their heads. The 2-minute clip shows a drone hovering a short distance away from an airport runway while an Airbus A380, the largest commercial airliner with seating for up to 525 people, takes off and whizzes right past the drone.
Fstoppers reports that the Emirates A380 was taking off from runway 14 of Plaine Magnien Airport on Mauritius Island in the Indian Ocean.
While the exact distance between the drone and the airliner is difficult to gauge from the video, it’s sufficiently clear that the drone is hovering too close from the aircraft from a safety point of view.
The video was originally uploaded to Facebook by Air France A380 captain Thierry Paris, who found the clip and wrote “Hello flight safety!” in the caption before he subsequently deleted the video. The video has since been mirrored and reported on as an example of what not to do with a camera drone.
Visual Exercises is a new photo project by Polish fine art and portrait photographer Alicja Brodowicz, who hunted for similarities between the human body and nature created diptychs of her findings.
I photograph the human body – the microcosm,” Brodowicz says. “Its’ fragments: hair, scars, texture of skin, wrinkles. I am interested in individual particularities; I look for distinguishing features and irregularities. Imperfections are my favorites.”
“I photograph nature – the macrocosm,” she continues. “Surface of water, grass, tree bark, dry leaves.
“I combine the two images, looking for converging lines, textures, similarities in layout and analogies in composition between the microcosm and the macrocosm. I look for unity between the human body and the nature.”
“The series of photos is the visual re-enactment of my ever-increasing desire of being close to nature,” Brodowicz tells PetaPixel. “The older I grow, the more intense this desire is. It is also the expression of my growing concern for the environment and the human impact on it. By combining images of the human body and elements of nature I am trying to show that we are inter-connected and that our separate existence is impossible.”
Superzoom cameras are getting crazier and crazier in their reach. If you thought the 83x zoom on the Nikon P900 was impressive, watch this video demonstrating the power of the 125x zoom on the new Nikon P1000.
In the 5.5-minute video, Indian civil engineering student Jayanta Mandal takes the Nikon P1000 out to a location overlooking the city and zooms in on various things in the distance. The 24-3000mm equivalent lens is so powerful that you can zoom into a skyscraper construction project on the horizon…
…and see the individual workers at the top.
You can be sure of one thing, though: your camera will probably attract stares if you walk around shooting at the telephoto end:
The Kennel Club has announced the winning photos of the 2018 Dog Photographer of the Year photo contest. This is the 13th year of the contest and entries are submitted by thousands of photographers from countries all over the world.
The overall winner (and the top photo in the “Oldies” category) is “The Lady of the Mystery Forest” by Dutch photographer Monica van der Maden.
This picture was made in the early morning in the forest. I wanted to photograph her in a position where she was sitting relaxed next to a tree. When I wanted to make the shot she turned her head to the left to her owner and this was the moment where you could see her soul.
Dogs come in all different shapes, sizes, and colors. But their heart are all the same filled with love.
Here are the other winning photos in each of the different categories:
Ceylin was the second dog of my friend Birguel. The photo means much too me since her first dog, also an Italian greyhound died at puppy age in a car accident. 13 weeks old Cylin has the whole life in front of her. You can see it in her expression.
Assistance Dogs and Dog Charities
My thought process behind this picture is one that is close to my heart. My brother is ex-military as are some of my friends. I have seen first-hand some of the issues that war can have on even the strongest of men. The ex-soldier in the photo suffered great loss in Afghanistan and suffers from PTSD so that’s when Rocko came to his rescue. Rocko the German Shepherd has been trained by his handler to help combat the effects of PTSD, the skills of which help calm and reassure the soldier when times get hard. In my photograph I tried to capture not just how this dog aids this PTSD sufferer but also to capture the kind nature of the dog and how he enriches this man’s life. I have been following and admiring the work carried out by Service Dogs UK, the charity I am nominating for this category prize donation from the Kennel Club Charitable Trust. I am amazed by how effective dogs can be in assisting an individual with their recovery. So I decided to base my entry for this category on this issue and hope that in doing so will raise awareness of this worthy charity.
Dogs at Play
This particular photo was taken on the beach just before sunset. I shot 4 dogs on that day, Lili, and her 3 bigger brothers. Suddenly, Lili, the smallest bitch, began to jump with pleasure at the soap bubbles and play as if she were a puppy. It was a precious moment full of happiness and true freedom.
Dogs at Work
I was in photographer’s heaven whilst out on the shoot with Wayne’s Team of working dogs. It was a privilege to watch them, tails held high, nose to the ground and retrieving. All of them totally in tune with Wayne Green, hanging on every command and thoroughly enjoying their job. Its days like this and the reality of life that I am looking to capture in my images. To document life, as it is, with passion. I always promised myself at the age of forty I was going to follow my dream to become the best photographer I could be. Now at forty-eight, through passion, hard work and determination, I have a photography business I am very proud of.
Man’s Best Friend
I love this photo for many reasons: it was taken at my favorite beach, with my favorite man, with my favorite dog… and in the background there is an umbrella that belonged to my eternal love Nupi, an adventurous cocker spaniel who shared his life with me for almost 19 years. Godji, the beautiful dog in the picture is a natural poser and sometimes people call her “supermodel of the world” and now she has become one!
The photograph was taken on the last day of October 2016 in the UK as we had the best autumn for years for it colors for many years but this day there was a mist in the background to make the photo magical. The photo was taken at Ash Rangers where the dogs walk daily – Crew, Darcie, and Pagan. This photo is memorable due to Crew’s short life cut short at 3 with IBD disease.
Rescue Dogs and Dog Charities
It was very clear that Cooper was the first child for this beautiful and loving couple. In this shot, they are holding hands behind Cooper’s drowsing head. It was a scene of pure contentment and love.
Young Pup Photographer (11 years and under)
My Name is Mariah Mobley and I am 11 years old. I have lived in Oregon, USA my whole life. I used to live on a farm with horses and dogs, but now live in a town with my family, and our three dogs, Hunter, Roxy and Koby. I have always loved animals, especially dogs. I started taking pictures when I was a very little girl, and have loved it ever since. I took this photo of Roxy, at about 9 Pm, just before I went to bed. It was dark and she was sitting on our back porch waiting for mom to give her a treat. I used a modeling light and the porch light to put light on her pretty face. We adopted Roxy from a rescue when she was 7 months old. She had been in a shelter since she was 4 months old. She is 5 years old now and is the sweetest girl. As you can see in the photo, Roxy has an eye disease that causes redness and cloudiness. It is called Pannus. Her eyes are not as clear as they used to be, but I think she is beautiful just as she is.
I Love Dogs Because…(ages 12 to 17)
I am Tamara Kedves, a 16 years old student living in Hungary. I started photography three years ago when I realized how much joy I find in taking photos of nature and animals. Since then I have photographed uncountable priceless moments, but my own dogs have stayed my biggest inspiration all along. For me, the purpose of photography is capturing a memory and make it last forever, as well as expressing my love for dogs through my pictures. My biggest goal is to make outdoor dog photography more popular with the creative use of lights and colours while motivating other aspiring photographers. This family photo was taken on a sunny spring afternoon as the last shot of the session. It perfectly expresses what dogs and photographing them means to me: not only the deepest harmony and happiness but spending time with whom and what I love the most: dogs!
This image was taken whilst out on a walk with my Working Cocker Spaniel, Bonnie. I very rarely take my camera with me on dog walks, as this is my opportunity to clear my head and have some ‘me time’. But the purple heather was just too beautiful to leave it behind. After all, who doesn’t love black and purple?
Image credits: All photographs copyright their respective photographers and courtesy Kennel Club/Dog Photographer of the Year
Light, the startup behind the groundbreaking 16-camera camera L16, has a new investor with a much longer history in photography. Leica is now a shareholder in the computational photography company.
Light just announced a massive $121 million Series D funding round led by SoftBank Vision Fund, and Leica Camera AG also participated in the round with an undisclosed amount.
“The new funding will allow Light to expand the reach of its imaging platform beyond consumer photography and into security, robotic, automotive, aerial and industrial imaging applications,” Light says.
The company is also officially directly confirming that the first Light-powered smartphone will be launching later this year — a phone that “will shatter the expectations of mobile photography,” the company says.
The Washington Post first broke the news on the existence of the phone earlier this month, reporting that it features as many as 9 separate cameras on the back. Here are a few views of the phone, as revealed by Light:
“Light’s technology is a revelation, showing that several small, basic camera modules, combined with highly powerful software, can produce images that rival those produced by cameras costing and weighing orders of magnitude more,” says Light CEO and co-founder Dave Granna. “We’re just getting started.”
Leica says that partnering with Light will allow its (relatively) ancient brand to stay relevant as photography evolves.
“The Leica brand is founded on a long tradition of technology leadership, precision engineering, and craftsmanship,” says Leica Chairman Dr. Andreas Kaufmann. “Since the birth of its first digital camera in 1996, Leica has embarked on a path of digital photography technology evolution.
“With the rapid development of the computational photography, partnering with the innovators at Light ensures Leica to extend its tradition of excellence into the computational photography era.”
I’m often asked: where I get my inspiration from, how to stand out? AND why I’m sharing less BTS videos of my photo shoots? Well….glad you asked. Because in today’s episode of #cjRAW, I answer those questions specifically….but wanted to do something a little bit different. A little stripped down. Straight talk. Heart to heart — just you and me. In fact, in this episode, I reveal the dirtiest secret in photography. Truth is: the most game-changing ideas come from influences outside our industry. But don’t fret. There isn’t something “wrong” with photography. This is true in EVERY industry. Just think about it for a second. In photography, we spend a lot of time talking about photography, right? Shop talk, gear talk, lighting talk, client talk and then there’s the talk about all those “other” photographers. That’s all well and …er…good, but it’s circular conversation. Very rarely – if ever – do new ideas form amidst it. If you want to… CHANGE THE GAME. If you want to… BE DIFFERENT. If you want to… STAND OUT, you must go beyond this circle. The best things in photography come from outside the industry. Listen to the Podcast Watch the Episode […]
The six winners of the Women Photograph grants have been announced – just as the Columbia Journalism Review has released a damning report into sexual harassment of female photojournalists, which includes accusations about prominent industry figures and their behaviour.
Set up in 2017 to promote the work of female photojournalists, Women Photograph awards five grants of $5000 per year with Nikon, which have this year gone to Tasneem Alsultan, Anna Boyiazis, Jess T. Dugan, Ana Maria Arevalo Gosen, and Etinosa Yvonne Osayimwen. The Women Photograph + Getty Images grant of $10,000 has been awarded to Nadia Shira.
Nadia Shira’s series Yo No Di a Luz documents the complete ban on abortion in El Salvador and its effect on women – particularly women, teens, and girls forced to give birth to children conceived as a result of rape. Tasneem Alsultan’s work looks at women from Saudi Arabia’s Shiaa minority, in particular the activists and leaders who have risen to prominence in one of the world’s most conservative countries. Anna Boyiazis, meanwhile, has won another award for her highly successful project Finding Freedom in the Water, which documents young women in Zanzibar learning to swim within the for the first time, and which has also been nominated for a World Press Photo prize, and the Contemporary African Photography Prize.
Ana Maria Arevalo Gosen’s project looks at women held in detention in Venezuela – waiting for trial, but facing years of separation from their families and children in Venezuela’s ongoing economic crisis. Etinosa Yvonne Osayimwen’s project features double exposures which convey the mental struggle faced by those who have suffered violence and trauma in Nigeria, while Jess T Duggan’s project Every Breath We Drew is a series of portraits – including self-portraits – engaging with gender, sexuality, and identity.
Women Photograph includes a database of 700 women documentary photographers based in 91 countries which is available to those who commission photography, and its mission is “to shift the gender makeup of the photojournalism community and ensure that our industry’s chief storytellers are as diverse as the communities they hope to represent”. Its founder Daniella Zalcman, was one of several women to step forward for a recent report in the Columbia Journalism Review, which painted a damning picture of the sexual harassment faced by women photojournalists in the industry.
“There are plenty of known figures in the business who are problematic, who are predatory, but who are also themselves independent photographers,” Zalcman told the journalist behind the report, Kristen Chick. “Who is holding them accountable, to ensure there are repercussions for their behavior? Even if one photo editor says, We don’t like this person’s behavior, we don’t want to work with them, there’s probably another outlet that will.”
In the report, Zalcman is also critical of the lack of transparency about sexual harassment in the industry – noting that institutions who quietly drop individuals accused of abuse are not doing enough to ensure this abuse is stopped. “We need to come up with better community-wide ways of protecting people,” she is quoted as saying. “It’s great if you take measures to ban people who are being inappropriate, that’s really important, but if you’re not taking a public stand against those individuals and that behavior, then what was the point?”
Coming hard on the heels of the accusations against former National Geographic deputy director of photography Patrick Witty, who left the magazine after being investigated for sexual harassment, the CJR report draws gloomy conclusions about the current state of play in photojournalism. After speaking with more than 50 people over five months, it concludes that incidents ranging from assault to unwanted advances to comments on women’s bodies or appearance are endemic in photojournalism, describing the field as historically “male-dominated with a culture that glorifies macho, hyper-masculine behavior”.
The report includes comments from award-winning British photographer Anastasia Taylor-Lind, stating that the photographer Antonin Kratochvil made lewd comments about her breasts and even groped her in full view of others when she first joined the prestigious photo agency VII – and that this behaviour was effectively condoned. “Everyone knew about it and would say things like ‘Oh that’s just Antonin’,” Taylor-Lind comments.
“As a woman in this industry, the thing that is most challenging for me is not having my vagina touched in a work environment, but it’s knowing that I exist in a community where my sense of self, and where my permission for touching my body, is not respected by my colleagues,” she later adds. “That’s what hurts the most, is the silence and the complicity of, not men who behave like this, but of all the ones who allow it to happen.”
The report also includes on-the-record accusations about the photographer Christian Rodriguez; both men deny acting inappropriately, but VII has stated it has launched an independent investigation into the allegations against Kratochvil. The full report can be read at: www.cjr.org/special_report/photojournalism-sexual-harassment.php/