When we first heard about Getty making the majority of its photographs free to share, without watermarks, our initial reaction was, “now they’ve lost it completely.” Without further explanation, this sounds almost as if the stock agency were giving away the work of its contributors for free, essentially generating even less income for working photographers–who already in many cases have a hard time making a living from their chosen craft. However, digging into the story a little deeper, we realized that this move is actually pretty clever.
For years, Getty has seen the copyright of its photographers being infringed on the internet, mainly due to image sharing via social networks such as Twitter or Tumblr, but also by blogs and other websites. In most cases, the persons or websites sharing the images weren’t generating any profit from them. But the pictures were often acquired by means that disregarded copyright, that is by screenshot or by grabbing from other websites that happened to host them–and were often free of Getty’s watermark.
Since Getty’s images were being used in this way already, the agency figured the best solution would be to officially make its stock photos available for anyone to embed, free of charge, and without watermark. The clever trick here is that Getty is providing the embed code itself, which means that the agency has a certain amount of control over the images that are being used–which so far wasn’t the case. This also opens up the possibility to monetize the content, for example via ads, although currently there don’t seem to be any fix plans for doing so.
In essence, what Getty is doing here is comparable to the legalization of cannabis use: it is decriminalizing what is already a common practice. And instead of seeking legal action against those using its images, the agency embraces the fact that its photos are being shared and tries to gain control over how the content is spread. And in addition, this is very helpful for small, non-commercial or non-profit publications without a budget for stock photography, as it will allow them to use Getty’s material without having to pay fees, and most importantly without infringing on the photographers’ copyright.
Here’s a new Kickstarter project that might tickle your fancy – London-based VU Equipment has designed a simple and modern yet functional camera slingstrap that’s supposedly easier and more convenient to use than the other existing slingstraps in the market. They are calling it the Slidestrap.
The main claim of the Slidestrap is that it supposedly allows you to easily bring your camera up to eye level without the constant adjustment of the strap but also lets you carry around your precious equipment close to your body so that it doesn’t bounce around. You simply mount your camera to the strap’s anodized aircraft-grade aluminum mounting plate with a rubber padding that keeps your camera from constantly slipping and it’s good to go. It has no buckle adjustments that to deal with between carrying the camera and taking photos and it keeps it steady, with lens pointing towards the ground, to avoid accidental knocks on your camera when you’re walking around.
Made in Britain, VU Equipment promises an affordable product made from high quality materials and with a stylish and functional design. Currently, the Slingstrap comes in either cream or black on brown leather devoid of any massive corporate logo prints, just a small subtle VU logo on one end.
The company just launched the Kickstarter campaign to help them with the production of these straps. If you’re interested in the product or would like to help them reach their goal, then stop by their campaign page for more details. In the meantime, learn more about the Slingstrap by watching the video after the jump.
While speedlight/monolight combinations aren’t a new concept and have been around via CheetahStand and Quantum for a while now, Adorama has decided to enter the game. Today, the company is announcing their new StreakLight designed for on or off camera use. In addition to the bare bulb and umbrella reflector design, the light is available in two power options: 180 watt seconds or 360 watt seconds.
Amongst the features are an LED panel for control, 1/3 adjustable stops from full power to 1/128th, optical slave capabilities, AF assist bulb, and come come with a remote/receiver. Even more interesting is the fact the company claims that high speed sync is possible as well. There aren’t many details on that though. To power it, you can use battery power and even extend it with a battery pack.
The Flashpoint StreakLight 360Ws is available now for $549 USD or bundled with the Blast Pack battery for $749.95 USD. The Flashpoint StreakLight 180Ws is available now for $405.95 USD or bundled with the Blast Pack battery for $599.95 USD.
Check out the product overview video after the jump.
With today’s news of the Sony A7 and A7r suffering from light leaks, we decided to answer the question about what exactly they are without totally confusing everyone. First off, light leaks are little white tinges that you see on an image which was significantly more common when photography was primarily done by shooting film. What they often look like is just like what you see above. Photographer John Angelone said that this happened when he was shooting with his Fuji GW690III + Fuji Pro 160S film. Typically, light leaks were often seen to be unacceptable and that they tainted image quality until it started to happen in such a way that it appeared beautiful to some artists.
Today, we often think about it being associated with Hipster trends. But for what it’s worth neither VSCO, Instagram or Hisptamatic give you light leaks as a filter or modification option. The only way to actually accomplish them though post-production is through Photoshop Touch. But you can still get them through the camera.
Light leaks occur when seals on the lens or between the lens and camera body aren’t properly closed. This is a bigger problem due to the construction of digital sensors but it wasn’t as horrifying when it came to shooting film. When a camera takes a picture, it only sees the light that comes in from its eye: which is essentially the sensor. Everyone’s eyes have a lens, which is represented by the lens of a camera. When the lens isn’t working correctly, it starts to get blurry and sometimes the world may be too bright in certain areas–this is a common complaint amongst many folks who suffer from extreme astigmatisms.
What I also found out later on while using film is that sometimes, light leaks can occur when the back of the camera isn’t closing correctly too. This is far more rare and more than often the images just end up completely washed out, but it’s still an interesting problem to have. This won’t happen with digital cameras at all.
We thought the Sony A7 and A7r were impeccable cameras giving us full frame shooting versatility in a mirrorless package. But it seems some users are experiencing light leak problems coming from the lens mount. Some A7 and A7r owners speculate that the problem comes from a gap between the silver flange on the lens mount and the orange ring that protrudes from the camera’s body.
The problem becomes especially apparent when taking long exposures. Documented photos on Sony’s forums showing a noticeable light crescent leak, which appears on the upper right quadrant of the image. Now Sony is finally acknowledging the problem and provided the following statement.
“Sony is aware of and acknowledges this light leak problem with the A7 and A7r and our engineering department is currently researching a solution. We will release a notice to the owners once a resolution is found.”
Sony did not elaborate on how it would fix the problem since it’s a fault of the hardware and not something that easily fixed with a software patch. Perhaps Sony will provide a similar solution as Nikon to fix the oily shutter problem on Nikon D600 by replacing them with D610 models.
Until Sony comes up with an official solution, A7 and A7r owners have taken fixing the light leak problem into their own hands. One user suggests applying gaffers tape between the flange and orange ring. Meanwhile, Ferrell McCollough has a non-adhesive fix that suggests photographers should close the gap using a hair tie.