Photographer Shuchang Dong has won this year’s Astronomy Photographer of the Year competition with The Golden Ring (below), an image of the annular solar eclipse that took place on 21 June 2020. He wins the £10,000 top prize for this image, which also won the Our Sun category
“The square crop has a tension with the mystic ring, and the misty bluish sky is the complementary of the yellow ring,” said competition judge László Francsics, who went on to describe it as a “true masterpiece.”
Winning images from other categories and special prizes include the Aurora dance taken from the bridge of a ship by the Third Officer Dmitrii Rybalka (Russia), who was on watch duty that night; Venus rising over the rocky horizon of the Moon by Nicolas Lefaudeux (France); a star trail image taken during lockdown by Deepal Ratnayaka (UK); and a very striking image of the Space X Falcon 9 rocket passing the Moon by Paul Eckhardt (USA).
Meanwhile 15-year-old Zhipu Wang (China) won top prize in the Young Competition category for his composition of the sun, the moon and the planets of the solar system. “As a planetary scientist I applaud the work that has gone into creating this photo,” added competition judge Dr Sheila Kanani. “I really like the composition with the moon on the right-hand side too.”
Astronomy Photographer of the Year is run by Royal Observatory Greenwich in association with BBC Sky at Night Magazine. Now in its 13th year, the competition received over 4,500 entries from 75 countries. The winners, runners-up, highly commended and shortlisted images will be showcased in the Astronomy Photographer of the Year 13 exhibition at the National Maritime Museum, opening to the public from 18 September 2021.
They will also be published in the competition’s official book, available for pre-order at Royal Museums Greenwich shops and online and on sale across all bookstores from 30 September for £25 shop.rmg.co.uk.
Tamron’s holy trinity of f/2.8 zoom lenses has been a runaway hit for the company, offering smart compromises that bring professional-level quality and performance at prices that significantly undercut those of first-party options. The 70-180mm f/2.8 Di III VXD is the longest of the trio, offering a versatile focal length range and wide maximum aperture suitable for a wide range of scenarios. This great video review discusses how it holds up after a year of usage.
Coming to you from Stefan Malloch, this excellent video review takes a look at the Tamron 70-180mm f/2.8 Di III VXD lens after a year of usage. The company’s 28-75mm f/2.8 Di III RXD and 17-28mm f/2.8 Di III RXD lenses have been huge hits, offering professional-level performance at prices often about half those of first-party options. In fact, the 28-75mm f/2.8 was one of my favorite lenses I have had the pleasure of testing, as it offers fantastic image quality in a small and portable package all at a budget-friendly price. So good are the prices that you can actually fill out the entire holy trinity for about the price of one first-party lens. Check out the video above for Malloch’s full thoughts.
Design-wise, nothing much has changed with the camera remaining a pocketable APS-C camera but there is a new lens, exchanging the Ricoh GRX III’s 23mm equiv lens for a 40mm one.
The GR III was released in 2019 so it’s been a few years since Ricoh fans have seen an update to the popular camera, with Ricoh introducing the Ricoh GR IIIx in response to user requests.
Software-based innovations will later be available for the GR III with a firmware update.
The main features of the RICOH GR IIIx at a glance:
26.1 mm high-performance lens (40mm equiv.) With aperture F2.8 and macro function (approx. 1:4 at 12-24 cm focusing distance). Consists of seven elements in five groups, with two aspherical lens elements.
24.2 megapixel APS-C sensor with Shift Shake Reduction sensor with an exposure reliability of up to 4 exposure levels, low-pass filter simulation, filter simulator and dust cleaning function
Image processor GR 6 with an accelerator unit for fast image processing
Sensor sensitivity ISO 100 to 102400
Fast start-up time of 0.8 seconds
3-inch monitor with touchscreen and low light reflection for good image reproduction even in direct sunlight
Intuitive camera control using many buttons and switches with clear menu navigation
Multiple options for individual key assignment
“Image Control” function for different film simulations
Various trigger functions (series shots, multiple exposures, interval shots, bracketing, camera control via app)
Wireless communication via WLAN and Bluetooth
Compact and high-quality housing design made of magnesium alloy
Battery charge in the camera
Pricing & Availability: The RICOH GR IIIx will be available from September 2021 with an RRP of £899.99.
From Ricoh Imaging:
RICOH IMAGING COMPANY, LTD. is pleased to announce the launch of the RICOH GR IIIx. This premium digital compact camera features a newly developed GR lens with a 40mm angle of view in 35mm format, while harmonising professional-grade image quality with a compact, lightweight body perfect for street photography.
The RICOH GR IIIx has been developed in response to user requests for a new GR series camera that will add a new perspective to the highly acclaimed RICOH GR III. The GR III was released in March 2019, featuring a 28mm wide-angle lens and designed to further enhance the essential values of the GR series: optimising image quality, snapshot capabilities whilst still being able to fit in the pocket. The newly designed 26.1mm GR lens provides a 40mm angle of view in 35mm format, which is close to the photographer’s own field of view. Depending on the way the lens is used, this versatile angle of view can create different image perspectives: you can capture an image similar to those taken at a 30mm semi-wide angle, or create a completely different visual expression as if taken at a 50mm standard angle. The camera also provides a range of new and upgraded editing functions to adjust the images to the photographer’s preference.
The new RICOH GR IIIx is a camera that harmonizes all the benefits of the ever-evolving RICOH GR series with a new, innovative perspective perfect for dramatic, inspiring street photography.
Main features of the RICOH GR IIIx
1. Newly designed, high-resolution GR lens The RICOH GR IIIx incorporates a newly developed 26.1mm F2.8 GR lens, which harmonises exceptional image quality with a compact design. Unlike past GR models which featured a 28mm wide angle of view for exaggerated perspective, this lens provides a 40mm standard angle of view in the 35mm format, delivering images with a more natural perspective and a more truthful sense of depth for a completely different type of street photography. The newly designed optics incorporates two aspherical optical elements at the most effective positions to reduce distortion and keep chromatic aberration to a minimum, while effectively minimizing flare and ghost images when shooting against backlight. In macro photography, the camera allows the user to move in on a subject to as close as 12 centimeters from the front of the lens. Coupled with the standard focal length, it captures close-up images with a natural perspective, set against a beautifully defocused background. It also comes equipped with an ND (Neutral Density) filter, which closes the aperture down by two stops to capture high-contrast, high- resolution images with a variety of scenes and subjects and under varying shooting conditions. Its nine-blade diaphragm mechanism creates a natural bokeh (defocus) effect and a truthful sense of depth at open and larger apertures, while capturing beautiful light beams at closed- down apertures.
2. High-quality, high-resolution images The GR IIIx incorporates a large APS-C-format CMOS image sensor with an anti-aliasing (AA) filterless design and a newly developed GR ENGINE 6 imaging engine to optimize its image resolving power. With approximately 24.24 effective megapixels, this image sensor assures super-high-resolution images rich in gradation. It is also compatible with multi-tone 14-bit RAW image recording. The camera also features the RICOH-original accelerator unit designed to optimize the image data delivered by the image sensor, and provides a top sensitivity of ISO 102400 for super-high-sensitivity photography.
3. Hybrid AF system for high-speed, high-precision autofocus operation The GR IIIx features a hybrid AF system combining a contrast-type AF mechanism, superior in focusing precision with a phase-detection-type AF mechanism assuring high-speed focusing operation. During autofocus shooting, this AF system can detect the subject’s face or eyes with precision*, focuses on it, and indicates the in-focus position on the LCD display using the AF frame. When the camera detects multiple faces, it automatically distinguishes the main subject from secondary ones and indicates this on the focus frame. Photographers can also change the main subject with simple touch-screen operation. * A firmware upgrade for the RICOH GR III will be provided soon. GR III users are advised to update the camera’s firmware to use this function.
4. RICOH-original SR mechanism • Three-axis, four-step* shake reduction: The RICOH-original SR (Shake Reduction) mechanism means that the GR IIIx effectively compensates for camera shake at the time of shutter release. The three-axis mechanism minimizes the adverse effects of camera shake caused by pitch, yaw and roll by as much as four shutter steps. Since the SR mechanism shifts the image sensor to the ideal position horizontally and vertically, the camera lets the user take advantage of the Auto Horizon Correction function to effortlessly optimize image composition.
* Measured in conformity with CIPA standards.
• RICOH-original AA Filter Simulator*: By applying microscopic vibrations with sub-pixel precision to the image sensor unit during exposure, the camera’s AA (anti-aliasing) Filter Simulator provides the same level of moiré reduction as an optical AA filter. This innovative simulator allows the user not only to switch the AA filter effect on and off, but also to adjust the effect to the level best suited for a given subject.
* This function is available at shutter speeds slower than 1/1000 second.
5. Compact, lightweight design Despite the incorporation of the large APS-C- image sensor and the newly developed optics with a longer focal length, the GR IIIx is designed to be extremely compact, functional and portable, in keeping with the GR-series camera concept of being a pocketable imaging tool or a handy picture-taking tool. It also provides a host of user-friendly features – such as a short start-up time of approximately 0.8 seconds, control dials conveniently positioned next to the four-way controller, and effortless touchscreen operation – to enhance operation and allow the user to swiftly react to once-in-a-lifetime shutter opportunities. The exterior frame is made of highly rigid magnesium alloy to improve reliability and durability while being carried or stored.
6. High-definition LCD monitor with intuitive touchscreen operation The GR IIIx features a 3.0-inch high-definition LCD monitor with approximately 1,037,000 dots. Its touchscreen operation provides swift, intuitive control of various camera functions, such as AF frame shift, menu selection, and image advance/magnification during playback. It also features an air gapless construction, in which special resin is inserted between the LCD touchscreen monitor and a protective cover made of reinforced glass, to effectively reduce the reflection and dispersion of light for improved visibility. The Outdoor View Setting allows the user to instantly adjust the monitor’s brightness to the desired level for greater visibility in difficult lighting conditions.
7. Image Control function to produce desired visual effects The GR IIIx features a creative Image Control function, which integrates effect modes into conventional image setting operations. Using 11 basic Image Control modes, the user can easily adjust various parameters, such as saturation, hue, key, contrast and graininess, to the desired level and create their preferred finishing touch. A set of adjusted parameters can be added as a custom setting to the Image Control function menu.
8. Advanced image editing The GR IIIx provides built in RAW development, while allowing the user to edit a captured image as desired by adjusting parameters such as recoding size, aspect ratio, white balance, Image Control setting, and exposure compensation factor, all without the need of a PC. Since the camera reduces the time required for preview after the user adjusts the parameters of RAW images, it enhances the speed of built in RAW development. The camera also lets the user retain the adjusted parameters after the initial RAW development is complete, making it possible to make minute re-adjustment of the already developed image with greater efficiency. The camera’s image quality adjustment function for JPEG images is also upgraded: a newly added monochrome mode allows more minute adjustment of parameters in full-colour images, such as filter effect, toning, contrast and sharpness, to create monochrome images with the desired finishing touches. The camera also provides such creative tools as a choice of aspect ratio (16:9 or 4:3)* and image rotation in 0.1-degree steps* to facilitate the image editing process.
* A firmware upgrade for the RICOH GR III will be provided soon. GR III users are advised to update the camera’s firmware to use these tools.
9. Bluetooth and Wi-Fi dual communication The GR IIIx provides Wi-Fi functions for easy pairing with mobile devices such as smartphones and tables. By installing the dedicated Image Sync application, the user can transfer images to a mobile device, display a Live-View image on the device’s monitor, change various settings remotely, release the shutter from a distance, and even upload captured images to various social media sites with ease. Even when the camera’s power is turned off, the user can browse and download the images stored on the camera to a mobile device. The user can also send a mobile device’s location data to the camera, and record the data on captured images. The Auto Resize function,* which automatically reduces the image size before transmitting an image to a mobile device, also helps improve the camera’s performance.
* A firmware upgrade for the RICOH GR III will be provided soon. GR III users are advised to update the camera’s firmware to use these tools.
The 10th anniversary Pink Lady Food Photographer of the Year exhibition has been planned for the 20th November – 12th December 2021 at the RPS in Bristol, UK, showcasing over 170 photos from more than 25 categories.
If you want to enter next years competition, then the 2022 edition of Pink Lady® Food Photographer of the Year is now open. Submissions close on 6 February 2022. To find out more visit pinkladyfoodphotographyoftheyear.com
Abdul Momin, Winner, Fujifilm Award for Innovation, Pink Lady® Food Photographer of the Year 2021
Pink Lady® Food Photographer of the Year premieres its tenth anniversary exhibition at The Royal Photographic Society
This winter, Pink Lady® Food Photographer of the Year, the world’s leading awards for food photography and film, is premiering its tenth anniversary exhibition at The Royal Photographic Society, one of the oldest photographic societies in the world.
With over 170 images from more than 25 categories, ranging from the Politics of Food to Marks & Spencer Food Portraiture, the exhibition captures the great sweep of stories and cultures in the world of food.
‘The RPS is excited to present the visual feast that will be the Pink Lady® Food Photographer of the Year 2021 exhibition at its new gallery space in Bristol and are proud to be the first venue to host the finalist work outside London.’ said Dr Michael Pritchard FRPS, Director of Education and Public Affairs of The Royal Photographic Society, ‘This showcase of the world’s best food photography is sure to satisfy the city’s ardent foodies and the wider public.’
‘We are hugely honoured to be holding our tenth anniversary exhibition at The Royal Photographic Society – the exhibition is the exciting culmination of our Awards year and, though I say it myself, it is magnificent, we always get wonderful feedback. So do come and see us there!’ says Caroline Kenyon, Founder/Director of the Awards.
British documentary photographer Martin Parr CBE, recipient of the Pink Lady® Food Photographer of the Year Lifetime Achievement Award, will also be speaking at the exhibition. Parr has, for many years, used documentary images of food to explore social issues and identity, defining both his unique style and this genre of photography. Bristol is home to The Martin Parr Foundation, founded in 2014 and houses not only his own photography archive but also collections from other British and Irish photographers.
‘As home to the Royal Photographic Society, and an amazing creative community, Bristol is the perfect home for this event, not least because it is another opportunity to turn the spotlight on our incredible local food and drink, the majority of which have had such a challenging year.’ said Kathryn Davis, Head of Tourism, Visit Bristol, ‘This is a great opportunity to welcome back visitors to the city and attract new ones, and celebrate the best in food photography.’
The exhibition at the RPS, Bristol will run from 20 November to 12 December 2021. Entry is free. No booking required.
At just $2,499, the Canon EOS R6 has a remarkable list of specifications and along with the R5, has helped to reassert Canon’s dominance over the camera market. How does this camera hold up after a whole year of use?
Jared Polin was among the first to get his hands on the R6 and a combination of the coronavirus pandemic and a global chip shortage has meant that several elements of the camera market have been disrupted, making this a tricky camera to get hold of. Right now, B&H Photo is expecting more stock in the next two to four weeks, and other major vendors are also out of stock.
With this price tag, Polin is right to argue that this is a lot of camera for not very much money, and it will be interesting to see how Sony responds when it announces its much-anticipated a7 IV. Latest rumors suggest that it will have a 33-megapixel sensor and that an announcement is due in October, and Sony may choose to undercut its main rival. Just as the a7 III felt almost like a loss-leader, its successor may follow suit, presenting customers with a tough choice.
Will the a7 IV make the R6 feel slightly expensive? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.
Selected from over 50,000 entries by photographers in 95 countries, the fifty-seventh Wildlife Photographer of the Year (WPOTY) competition shows the beauty and vulnerability of the natural world with animals in their natural habitat. This year’s exhibition has proven to be the most competitive in the program’s history with the winning images set to be announced later this fall.
The WPOTY competition and exhibition is London’s Natural History Museum’s global platform for photographers of all ages and levels to capture and share the beauty of the natural world. Every submission is judged anonymously on its creativity, originality, and technical excellence by a panel of international industry experts. There are several categories included in this ranging from age, location, and subject matter. The competition is sponsored by renewable energy company Ørsted and Seedlip
This year’s submissions already include a diverse range of unique images including a lynx making a comeback from an ecological disaster and narwhal shrimp attempting to communicate at great depths below the surface of the ocean. Ahead of the official winner announcements this October, a special selection of “Highly Commended” photographs have been released to remind viewers of “the importance of the variety and variability of life on earth.”
Below are some of the top images from several categories of the competition as selected by the judges:
The final overall winners will be announced via a virtual awards ceremony that will be streamed from Natural History Museum, London on the evening of Tuesday, October 12, 2021.
Image credits: All photos individually credited and provided courtesy of the Wildlife Photographer of the Year.
The proof is in the spud-ing… Following success in 2020, the Potato Photographer of the Year award once again called for spud-loving creatives around the world to photograph the humble potato. We share the winners of this year’s competition
The Potato Photographer of the Year competition, organised by regular AP contributor Benedict Brain, was inspired by acclaimed photographer Kevin Abosch’s image of a potato. Selling for $1million in 2016, it was this photograph that confirmed the appetite for potato-based art.
The expert panel of judges included AP’s Nigel Atherton, as well as Martin Parr, Paul Hill, Amy D’Agorne, Angela Nicholson and Benedict Brain. The winners have also received prizes from the likes of FujiFilm, ThinkTank, Photocrowd, Fotospeed and the Royal Photographic Society, with all proceeds from the competition going to the Trussell Trust to help provide food for people in poverty.
Fish & Chips by William Ropp
“This was a challenge from a friend who after following art school courses ended up as a potato seller”
“There’s something extremely wonderful and weird about this work. The amalgamation of vegetables and animals creates a strange portrait of the everyday food we consume. The fact that the image was taken on a polaroid camera with just a flashlight is of great credit to the photographer’s skill”: Amy D’Agorne
“There’s a wonderfully surreal element to this image with dark undertones but also a touch of humour, an interesting combo, that maybe speaks to the times we live in. It has been artfully conceived and beautifully put together using analogue techniques”: Benedict Brain
Precious Potato by Clair
“Jean is in her late 90’s she has raised four children, been very close to her grandchildren and is lucky to see her bubbly great-grandchild growing up. For most of her life she has cooked and cared for her family, feeding them traditional nutritious meals, she appreciates the simplicity of the humble potato and how it can feed many around her ever-growing table. Many things in Jeans’ lifetime have altered, except for the classic potato.”
“The wonderfully simple and delicate approach to this image has been beautifully handled”: Benedict Brain
Hands Holding New Potatoes by John Glover
“Hands holding homegrown new organic potatoes recently harvested”
“I love the simplicity of this as the gardener proudly shows off their homegrown spuds”: Martin Parr
My Potato Necklace by Clair
“Exploring the possibilities of how the humble portable could be re-imagined.”
“This is a beautiful portrait in its own right. The photographer plays with both humour and intrigue with the added necklace of potatoes. I have heard of some old myths of a necklace of potatoes being used to cue a cold or fever. I wonder if the photographer was playing with this myth through their pairing of the potato necklace with the doilie?”: Amy D’Agorne
Potato Ketchup by Steve Caplin
“Made with Potatoshop”
The Potato in Motion by SpudWhite
“Photographing a potato at 1-millisecond intervals reveals that they are in a constant state of chaotic movement”
The Screaming Potato by Erin Marie
“This image was created using potato peels dipped in acrylic paint and a carved potato.”
“The peelings replicate the brush strokes in Munch’s painting brilliantly and the potato face has the same haunting quality. I hope this is one of a series!”: Angela Nicholson
Local Growers Market India by Ron Boon
Growth by Nigel Summerton
Submerged by Cashou
“Experimenting with potatoes underwater – this one reminds me of an embryo attached by its umbilical cord”
“I love the connection made here between the way the potato grows its new potatoes and an umbilical cord/the way new life is formed in humans. In Rebecca Earle’s ‘Feeding the People; The Politics of the Potato’, she claims “Potatoes and people alike are born from the dark earth and return to it”. I think that acknowledgement of just how similar we really are to the food we eat, and nature itself, is illustrated beautifully here.”
The photo of a potato that sold for €1M, over a few glasses of wine
For a while Ive lost my way in photography, life gets in the way. On my 57th birthday I had a bit of a lightbulb moment. Why not create a pure photographic project, a deviation from my creative work. 58 a year in the life, was born.
I had, had a couple of conversations with a friend on street/documentary photography. It was also around my birthday, so I thought why not create a project to last the whole year ?
I created myself a project brief (I wont bore you with the details). But the summary is 52 images over a year, all black and white, all documentary/street.
I had intended on using my Fuji, I was looking at a new lens. At the same time Nikon launched the ZFC, which was only slightly more, and I have a 20mm prime which was close to the lens I was looking at. The ZFC was in short supply so I ended up with the Z50 which has almost identical specs, and is quite a more advanced than the Fuji which is showing its age. My experience with the Z50 is a bit of a revelation, dont get me wrong there are some features I dont like, and dont get me going on dust bunnies but all in all I now enjoy pure photography again. If interested I will post a review in my next post warts and all
The culmination of the project will hopefully be a zine / book. The images probably wont be part of my PF on here but I have set up a separate Instagram account to separate from my other work [link=]@nick_walton_street_project[/link] if anyone is interested in a copy, drop me a PM with your contact details and I will send out details nearer the time the project comes to fruition
The processing has also been refreshing, 20 minutes per image instead of 20 hours ( and yes that is how long Ive worked on some of my creative images)., most of that time is spent removing dust bunnies.
This industry is infamous for having a low average wage, particularly if you’re a self-employed photographer or videographer. However, there are plenty of people earning a good wage, and here are 10 ways you can too, with examples of videographers who are already doing it.
I have written about my early experiences in this industry a few times, but it bears repeating. When I first leapt into full-time photography, I had no contacts, no money, and no specific direction for how I would proceed in the industry. It may seem as if I were ill-prepared, and you wouldn’t be wrong, but in truth, it was the result of getting a few job offers straight out of university for careers I knew I’d hate. I had to do something immediately, and so I chose my passion and dove in.
Back then, every few hundred dollars I could claw into my pocket was a hard-fought win and I was stressed permanently. I could scarcely imagine how anyone could make $100,000 with their camera let alone more than that, even though I knew people who were. When I saw this video by Parker Walbeck, I suspected I wouldn’t want to share it as a lot of similar content is ironically contentless, but this one isn’t. Walbeck goes through 10 different niches in which videographers can make good money, and then gives examples of videographers who have succeeded in that area and how.
It is, of course, worth noting that earning $100k per year or more takes a lot of work and know-how, but that it is achievable.
The ePHOTOzine team is very pleased to announce that we have over 50 active members who regularly use the site, most days in fact, who have now supported us for 20-years!
Back in 2001, before we really knew what the word ‘Facebook’ would mean to us and certainly before a virus brought the world to a halt, ePHOTOzine was beginning to grow and expand into the website it is today. Of course, we wouldn’t be where we are without the support of our loyal members and site visitors so ‘thank you’ to you all but we’d like to send an extended and special ‘thanks’ to the 53 ePHOTOzine members who signed up way back in 2001 and are still here, supporting the site in 2021.
We know we get hundreds of thousands of visitors to ePHOTOzine’s news, reviews, and features but you core members, who signed up all of those years ago and make the effort to be involved in the forums and more today, make ePz one of the friendliest photography sites to be a part of.
There are also many celebrating 5, 10 and 15-year memberships with us who we are also very grateful for your continued support!
Here are the 53 ePHOTOzine members who are celebrating 20-years with ePHOTOzine in 2021:
Once again, the team would like to thank you for staying with us for two decades and we hope you stay part of the ePHOTOzine family for another two decades (and more)!
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