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Tuesday, November 3, 2009

In Focus: December 2009

Editors' Picks

This Article Features Photo Zoom
There are more opportunities than ever before for photographers to make money from their images. SimplePhoto acts as a central e-commerce hub for photographers of all kinds to sell their work, whether as prints, calendars or any number of unique solutions and novelty items. The site also helps to take care of the back end, including pricing, marketing, coupons, custom shopping carts, gift certificates and other services. SimplePhoto will help you set up a new website via their PageScene sister site if you don’t already have one, and the site also acts as an extension of your own if you do, with seamless integration for matching the look of your site. Commission and pricing is determined by level of service, so you’re able to choose what works best for you with monthly or annual memberships. Contact: SimplePhoto, www.simplephoto.com. —DW
Tiffen Dfx v2.0
For almost 70 years, Tiffen has been providing photographers amazing options for adding impact to their photos with their high-quality optical filters. Tiffen’s Dfx Digital Filter Suite v2.0 offers digital simulations of their best and most popular optical filters, with more than 2,000 filter and special-effects presets. Available as a stand-alone program or as a plug-in for Photoshop and Aperture, the software suite allows photographers to preview effects and make localized adjustments, thanks to layering and masking support. Rosco and GamColor Gobo libraries add more than 1,500 lighting effects, and some of the many filter types in Dfx 2.0 include Bleach Bypass, Day For Night, Grain, ND-Grad, Diffusion, Sepia, Split Tone, Sunset/Twilight, Infrared, Rainbow, Tint and many, many more. List Price: $149 (stand-alone Dfx Software); $299 (Adobe Photoshop and Apple Aperture plug-ins). Contact: Tiffen, www.tiffen.com. —DW
Datacolor SpyderCube
Combining all that you’ll need for accurate white balance, exposure and contrast range, the SpyderCube from Datacolor is more than just a gray card. The SpyderCube uses multisided construction to capture color temperature and light-source data from the highlights all the way down to absolute black. A chrome ball shows catchlights in a scene in order to measure specular highlights and to establish clipping values. A white face is included for measuring highlights in relation to the specular highlights of the chrome ball. There’s also an 18% gray face for accurately designating midtones and color temperature, while the black side and circular black trap define absolute black and shadow details in your scene. List Price: $59. Contact: Datacolor, www.datacolor.com. —DW
Eye-Fi Explore SD memory card
If you’re looking for a simple way to wirelessly download images to your computer, look no further than Eye-Fi’s Explore SD Card. With built-in Wi-Fi radios, images are stored just like they would be on any other SD card, but once the camera is done writing, it wirelessly transmits them to your computer hard drive. Eye-Fi Explore allows you to use more than 10,000 Wi-Fi hotspots across the U.S. to connect to for uploading to your computer or the web. If you’re into sharing photos on sites such as Flickr or Picasa, like me, this is going to save you loads of time. Estimated Street Price: $99. Contact: Eye-Fi, www.eye.fi. —KC
PhotoForge for iPhone
In the October issue of OP, Dewitt Jones wrote about an app he’s been using for his iPhone. I couldn’t resist, and I downloaded PhotoForge as soon as I was done reading through that column. Since then, I’ve been using it and my camera phone more than ever. I’ve never been a camera-phone person, but the huge array of effects on PhotoForge have made my iPhone’s camera into my photo sketchbook. I try new ideas all the time now and, while I’m not making prints of the shots, I find the experimentation incredibly liberating. Estimated Street Price: $4.99. Contact: Apple, www.apple.com/iphone/apps-for-iphone/. —CR
B+W Polarize
Some things you can’t fix in Photoshop, and harsh glare off reflective surfaces is one of them—nothing can bring blown-out details back. That’s why a high-quality polarizing filter remains an indispensable tool for every outdoor photographer. My B+W circular polarizer was the first optical filter I ever bought, and it’s a filter I use more than any other. For ultra-wide-angle lenses, B+W’s Slim-Line filters keep a low profile, so the filter frame stays out of your shot. Estimated Street Price: Varies by diameter and series. Contact: B+W (Schneider Optics),
www.schneideroptics.com. —WP

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