A Thanksgiving Message

Yes, it’s Thanksgiving 2007 which got me thinking about the last year and what I have to be thankful for (photographically speaking of course.)

1. Film is still being made (YEAH) and seems to be having something of a renaissance.
2. Only one new version of Photoshop to upgrade to in 07 ( I skipped it anyways).
3. No major upgrades required for hardware or software.
4. Most new papers sucked or were rebranded previous offerings so I saved on costly testing and re-testing.
5. Photo Expo Plus in NYC was so boring that very little caught my eye or pocket book (thank god!)
6. My Leica lenses are still king and the new Nikon and Canon offerings are so not for me…no thank you.
7. My printing platform (The d’Vinci Printer) will continue to rock in to 2008 and beyond so no thank you to Mr. Epson, Mr. Canon or Mrs. HP.

So when I stuff my pie hole on Turkey day with too much food and drink and congratulate my self on accomplishments both real and imaginary as a photographer and artist I can also thank the Photographic Industrial Complex for making 2007 one least inspiring technologically and one cheapest years I can remember…now that is something to be really thankful for!

Photo Expo…Same old, same old

By Stephen M. Schaub

Yesterday was a marathon trek from Vermont to NYC and back to witness first hand Photo Expo 2007. Was it worth it? Am I a changed person? Are my images now sharper?

In one word, NO.

Some new products that are worth mentioning (note how small the list is):

New E3 by Olympus and new lenses by Olympus
New Satin Canvas by IJ Technologies

That’s about it for things new and worthy. Much of the show was a rehash of PMA from last winter. Sure there were new systems from Nikon and Canon and tweaks to current software and stuff but nothing earth shattering. Everyone I met kept asking “have you seen anything good- anything new?” Universal answer- NO.

It seems to me that the industry (The Photo Industrial Complex) is suffering from the recoil effect of the last few years…when there is huge growth there is always a healthy contraction for a breather. Lets hope that accompanied with this breather is a bit of long term planning or else we may find ourselves very soon on a respirator!

I also notice that several companies had come out with or were about to launch in the coming months cheaper versions of their current products…is this to strike a new market, or to help keep their current and now impoverished one? You decide.

I know there will be web sites proclaiming this amazing new gizmo or that fantastic new optic but in the end the best part about expo for me was chance to reconnect with some friends and just talk.

"I’m doing it all for you buddy!"

By Stephen M. Schaub

As a young boy I collected comic books among other things and in my home town there was a dealer who’s closing sales line was always…”I’m doing it all for you buddy!” Give me a break! Teleport decades into the future and I sometimes have the same feeling when the Photo Industrial Complex releases their newest offerings…they’re doing it all for us? Really? Are you sure?

I will be at Photo Expo Plus in NYC this coming week delivering to needy companies everywhere (yes I double as Santa with an attitude) their own personal copy of the Figital Revolution Manifesto (sure to win me friends) and also looking to see if there are any real “diamonds” amongst all the repackaged junkyard we call a Photo Convention. I am preparing to hear sales lines like “simply the finest color possible anywhere” or “sharper, faster, quieter” and maybe even “I’m doing it all for you, buddy!”