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Photoshop CS5 brings a rebuilt HDR authoring tool, 64-bit Mac compatibility, Mini Bridge, content aware fill, improved noise reduction, and a host of other interesting features for photographers. The question is, are there enough goodies to move you to spend the $199 for an upgrade?

In this week's broadcast, I dive in to what I believe are the most important new tools for photographers. And hopefully I cover enough ground to help you make the right decision for you.

Listen to the Podcast

You can also download the podcast here (31 minutes). Or better yet, subscribe to the podcast in iTunes. You can support this podcast by purchasing the TDS iPhone App from the Apple App Store.

Monthly Photo Assignment

Curve is the April 2010 Photo Assignment. You can read more about how to submit on our Member Participation page. Deadline for entry is April 30, 2010.

More Ways to Participate

Want to share photos and talk with other members in our virtual camera club? Check out our Flickr Public Group. It's a blast!


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Podcast Sponsors

Red River Paper -- Try the $7.99 Sample Kit.

Make Your Photos Sizzle with Color! -- SizzlPix is like High Definition TV for your photography.


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Photoshop CS5 Hits the Streets

Adobe released Photoshop CS5 with some impressive new features for photographers. I'll cover them in more depth in tomorrow's TDS podcast. But here's a quick preview of what's hot in this latest version.

  • 64-bit support for Macs, but you need to have an Intel Mac to run CS5.
  • Paint on Sharpen tool gives you localized control.
  • Content Aware Fill - really terrific for finishing off panoramas.
  • Lens correction built in.
  • Great noise reduction.
  • Terrific new HDR Pro, really nice.
  • New processing engine for ACR.
  • Mini Bridge, provides image browsing in the Photoshop interface.

Prices for upgrade are $199 for Photoshop CS5 and $349 for Photoshop CS5 Extended.

We'll dig deeper into this latest version in upcoming weeks, but it looks like a much improved application for photographers.


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When you're taking pictures in the great outdoors, your footwear is just as important as what's in your photo bag. The last thing you want is to be distracted by sore feet, or worry about your footing on uneven surfaces. I've tested some reasonably priced gear that you might want to consider for your next big outing.

Merrell Moab Ventilator Hiking Boots

Merrell Moab Hiking Boots

The Merrell Moab Ventilator boots don't feel like traditional boots in terms of weight and comfort -- they are as light as many athletic shoes and feel just as good... except they provide wonderful support and traction on the trail. I've worn these shoes with backpacks, photo packs, up hills, down hills, crossing streams, and around camp. And I'm never in a rush to take them off.

The Moabs breath well to keep your feet at a comfortable temperature. I usually wear one pair of hiking socks, and that's all I need. If you like to wear very thick socks or double pairs, I would order up a size, or at least a half size for the Moabs. Merrells do not run large for their listed size. So if you normally buy size 12 in your training shoes, you might want to try size 13 for the Moabs.

The Merrell Moabs run about $85 retail. So they are a good value as well as a comfortable, versatile boot.

Keen Newport Leather Sandals

When you want total comfort, easy on and off, yet great tread in case you have to sprint off to grab a shot, you might want to look at these Keen Newport Sandals.

Keen Newport Sandals

Typically, I wear these Keens around camp and, quite honestly, with shorts most of the summer. But I've also tested them on day hike with reasonable terrain, and they, along with my feet, have held up just fine. When I do day hike in them, however, I wear ankle socks for added comfort and to wick away moisture.

The Keen Newport Sandals run about $75 retail, but I've had a pair for well over a year, and they are definitely built to last.

Previously in Outdoor Gear for Photographers

Shelter on Location: REI Half Dome 2

String Monopods

"The Great Outdoors" - Digital Photography Podcast 218

Portable Camera Stability

Sunset Portraits

New Series on Outdoor Gear for Photographers


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As we use more fast publishing tools, such as Eye-Fi, to quickly push images up to Flickr, there's a greater need to adjust them once they've been posted. In this video, from my training title Flickr Essential Training, I introduce you to Flickr's online editing tools.

If you haven't tried online editing, give it a whirl. You'll be surprised at how a few simple touch ups can jazz up your photos.

And if you want to see the quick intro to the Flickr Essential Training title on Lynda.com, here's me standing in front of the camera.

More Free Training Videos

Extend the Reach of Your Compact Camera's Zoom Lens

Compact Camera Scene Modes

Sunglasses Polarizer and other Compact Camera Tricks

Introducing and Analyzing Natural Light Portraits


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I recently sampled the new Polar Pearl Metallic by Red River Paper, and I was very impressed by the image that emerged from my inkjet printer. So I thought it would be fun to sit down with Drew Hendrix, VP and evangelist for Red River, to get the inside scoop on the Metallic stock, his personal printing tips, and what we can expect in the future of personal printing.

Listen to the Podcast

You can also download the podcast here (34 minutes). Or better yet, subscribe to the podcast in iTunes. You can support this podcast by purchasing the TDS iPhone App from the Apple App Store.

Monthly Photo Assignment

Curve is the April 2010 Photo Assignment. You can read more about how to submit on our Member Participation page. Deadline for entry is April 30, 2010.

More Ways to Participate

Want to share photos and talk with other members in our virtual camera club? Check out our Flickr Public Group. It's a blast!


twitter.jpg Follow me on Twitter

-


Podcast Sponsors

Red River Paper -- Try the $7.99 Sample Kit.

Make Your Photos Sizzle with Color! -- SizzlPix is like High Definition TV for your photography.


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After two days of investigating photography apps in iTunes for the iPad, the two downloads that impressed me the most were Apple's own Keynote (rewritten for the iPad) and an iPhone favorite: CameraBag. Keynote is far and away the best presentation tool for building photo presentations on the iPad. And the developers over at Nevercenter.com have added some nice touches to CameraBag for adding effects to images in your iPad albums.

I've been adding images to the iPad from a couple different sources. The first from Aperture vla a Smart Album that iTunes can see during syncing. The second is using the download image option in Flickr. I've been saving my photos to Flickr at 1024 on the widest side, which works out great when I download them later to te iPad. I'll cover these two apps, and photo workflow on the iPad in more detail soon. But if you're working with the device right now, I would take a look at these applications.


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Compact camera zoom lenses often don't have the "reach" we'd like at the telephoto end. If you shoot at your camera's highest resolution, you can actually extend its reach without compromising quality. Here's how. This video is from my Lynda.com training titled, Getting Pro Results from a Compact Camera. You may also want to watch these free tutorials. More Free Photography Tutorials Compact Camera Scene Modes - A tour of the most important scene modes on a compact camera and how to use them. Sunglasses Polarizer - How to use your sunglasses as a polarizing filter for your compact camera.
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When you first look at the specs for the Canon EOS Rebel T2i / 550D, you might think that Canon can't provide 18 megapixels resolution on an APS-C sensor and control high ISO image noise and price the body at $799 US. And you would be wrong, because that's exactly what they have done.

Canon EOS Rebel T2i

You know it's a serious camera when Digital Photography Review says in their exhaustive report on the T2i/550D, "The unavoidable fact is that to get the most out of the 550D's sensor you really need to pair it with Canon's better lenses, which is a considerable investment." Then go on to say, "That said, the bottom line here is that the EOS 550D offers excellent image quality in a range of different conditions, including exceptionally low light, thanks to its usable ISO 12800 setting. Image quality is equal or better than its predecessor the EOS 500D, and not noticeably inferior to the considerably more expensive EOS 7D. The 550D's video capability is excellent too."

Yes, so the upshot is for enthusiasts photographers with good glass, or pros looking for an affordable back-up camera that delivers high quality results, the new Canon EOS Rebel T2i is a pro tool with a consumer price tag.


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When you're working in the field for a day or a week, having dependable shelter improves the experience. Photographers need a place to relax for short breaks, work on images, store gear out of the elements, and if necessary, sleep. I've been testing the REI Half Dome 2 tent ($179), and it has become an essential part of my outdoor gear.

REI Tents

Photos by Derrick Story. Click on image to enlarge.

This is a tent that has stirred lots of discussion. It earned a Backpacker 2010 Editor's Choice Award for great value, yet many readers on REI's own site panned its construction for condensation, difficulty to set up, or for just not liking the new design in general -- none of which ever crossed my mind when using it in the field.

I can set up the Half Dome 2 in just a couple minutes. I think the design is terrific for creating shelter in a hurry. I use the tent in two modes: with and without rain cover. When the weather is nice, I prefer without rain cover and let the mesh separate me from the insects. When it's time to add the cover, open the top vents, then pull the rain cover sides out and stake them. By doing so, you increase ventilation, and create two additional storage spaces outside the main cabin of the tent, but still under the rain cover. If rain is in the forcast, you may want to close the top vents.

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I also bring a half dozen clothes pins and a few colorful bandanas. I pin a bandana to each tie line on the side of the tent so other campers don't accidentally trip over it. The "patio" created by this configuration is great for keeping your boots out of the elements, yet not having to store them in the main cabin. The Half Done 2 has doors on both sides of the tent, so you can have a "back patio" and still keep the entrance clear.

The floor dimensions in the main cabin are 88" x 52" and very roomy for one, but a little tight for two guys. Since the tent weighs-in at 5 pounds, I usually prefer to carry it just for me, even on backpacking trips. This means I have plenty of room for my long sleeping bag, my pack, and various pieces of gear. There are also four interior side pockets for small items, and two top loft compartments that I use for LED lanterns. This makes it easy to continue working long after the sun goes down.

If you're looking for an affordable, relatively light, practical shelter for outdoor work, I would put the REI Half Dome 2 tent on my short list of considerations.

Previously in Outdoor Gear for Photographers

String Monopods

"The Great Outdoors" - Digital Photography Podcast 218

Portable Camera Stability

Sunset Portraits

New Series on Outdoor Gear for Photographers


twitter.jpg Follow me on Twitter

-


Apple's new iPad may turn out to be an important tool for photographers. In addition to its ability to be a portable portfolio display, it can often substitute for a much heavier laptop and fit in the front pocket of backpacks. Then, as new apps appear for it, it should become a wireless extension of our photo workflow. In this podcast, I discuss the possibilites of this new device.

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Listen to the Podcast

You can also download the podcast here (30 minutes). Or better yet, subscribe to the podcast in iTunes. You can support this podcast by purchasing the TDS iPhone App from the Apple App Store.

Monthly Photo Assignment

Flash is the March 2010 Photo Assignment. You can read more about how to submit on our Member Participation page. Deadline for entry is March 31, 2010.

More Ways to Participate

Want to share photos and talk with other members in our virtual camera club? Check out our Flickr Public Group. It's a blast!


twitter.jpg Follow me on Twitter

-


Podcast Sponsors

Red River Paper -- Try the $7.99 Sample Kit.

Make Your Photos Sizzle with Color! -- SizzlPix is like High Definition TV for your photography.


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