SHORTS & BRIEFS: June 22

Kayell face-off…Adobe throws a bone…Sigma circles Sony with lenses…Samyang expands low-price AF range…Dentists’ News…

Kayell face-off
Australian photographers are spolit for choice when it comes to photographic competitions – provided they can afford the average $25 a pop to enter – and now Kayell has come to the party with the Australian Portrait Prize, a portrait photo competition worth $40K. Kayell is also hosting a Portrait Conference to be held at the National Maritime Museum in Sydney in October.

The Australian Portrait Conference will be held on October 13-14 and includes two full days of instruction on all aspects of portraiture by eight of Australia’s top portrait photographers and educators, including Tim Bauer, Vicky Papas Vegra, Natalie Howe, Robyn Campbell, Marcus Bell, Charmaine Heyer, Peter Rossi and Gary Grealy.

The conference begins with a keynote presentation by portrait maestro Peter Adams. Early Bird tickets are on sale now from $295.00.

The Portrait Competition is open to professionals, amateurs and students. It starts online with a pool of cash and prizes totalling $40,000. Entry costs $25 per image with a five-for-four offer once you have invested $100. Finalists will be automatically entered  into an additional (free) print competition that has an extra prize pool of $20,000. This print competition will be judged and drawn on the final night of the Australian Portrait Conference on October 14.

Adobe throws a bone
Fresh from posting record revenue of US$2.2 billion for its second quarter – a 24 percent increase year-over-year – with net profit margins at a monolpolistic 30+ percent – Adobe has thrown its subscribers a bone in the form of an upgrade to Lightroom CC.

The cloud-based software will now synchronize both presets and profiles, including custom-created presets and third-party presets.

New features for desktop users (Windows and Mac) include batch copy-and-paste of image settings from one image to multiple photos.

The dirty rotten hold-outs who have declined to be shoehorned into Adobe’s more shareholder-friendly software rental model also receive some fixes for Lightroom Classic:
– Management tools that allow you to expand and collapse all profiles, control the visibility of profiles, and rename and manage presets;
– Faster folder searching;
– Colour labels for folders;
– Auto stacking of HDR and panoramic images.

The mobile and Chrome OS versions of Lightroom CC will also get some features such as a healing brush to remove dust, spots or blemishes and automatic image tagging.

Adobe has also announced Adobe Camera Raw 10.4 released, with additional camera raw support, expanded lens profile support.

Sigma circles Sony with lenses
Sigma has announced that five of its premium Art series Sony E-Mount primes are now shipping: the 20mm F1.4 DG HSM; 24mm F1.4 DG HSM; Sigma 35mm F1.4 DG HSM; Sigma 50mm F1.4 DG HSM; and 85mm F1.4 DG HSM.

They are compatible with Sony’s full-frame a7-series and a9 mirrorless interchangeable lens cameras.

RRPs and availability are:
Sigma 20mm F1.4 DG HSM – $1,399, available next month
Sigma 24mm F1.4 DG HSM – $1,299, available next month
Sigma 35mm F1.4 DG HSM – $1,199, stock has arrived
Sigma 50mm F1.4 DG HSM – $1,199, stock has arrived
Sigma 85mm F1.4 DG HSM – $1,599, stock has arrived

Thanks to distributor CR Kennedy for these details.

The E-Mount version of Sigma’s 14mm F1.4 DG HSM is expected later this year, along along with E-Mount versions of the recently-announced 70mm F2.8 Macro, and the 105mm and 135mm Art series telephotos.

The E-mount primes are compatible with high-speed continuous autofocus and will be superior to a DSLR-mount version with an adapter.

Samyang expands low-price AF range
…And the hits to the camera maker’s lens ranges just keep on coming! Samyang has also announced two primes lenses: a 24mm F2.8 AF for Sony E-Mounts and an 85mm F1.4 AF lens for Canon (pictured left).

The Samyang 85mm f1.4 is roughly half the price of the Canon 85mm f1.4 (RRP is $1099),  while the 24mm f2.8 for Sony full-frame carries a price tag of $499.

The 85mm F1.4 EF lens weighs 485g and measures in at 72mm long without the lens hood or rear cap. It’s constructed of nine optical elements in seven groups and features weather-sealing.

Dentists’ news
Leica has announced a limited edition release of 250 M10 ‘Edition Zagato’ cameras for the photographer with more money than sense.

Zagato is a custom luxury car designer. The M10 ‘Edition Zagato’ has a Summilux-M 35mm f1.4 lens with an integrated lens hood, and the body features a new handgrip on the right side. There’s a knobbier knurl on the lens barrel.
The Leica M10 ‘Edition Zagato’ will retail for $31,500 from selected Leica stores.

But if you only want to pay slightly over the odds for a Leica-branded product, the Leica C-Lux is only a few hundred dollars more than the Panasonic TZ220 – which it is a re-badged version of.

It has a 24-360mm F3.3-6.4 zoom lens and a 20-megapixel 1-inch BSI-CMOS sensor. It can shoot in raw format, has 4K video, a 2.33 million-dot EVF and a 3-inch touch screen.

Local RRP is $1550 – a premium of just $350 over the Panasonic for that little red dot. Available in July.

 

 

 

 

 


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