www.nikonians.org Nikonians Newsletter
In This Issue: 14-AUG-2005 
•   Nikonians Photo Insurance Under Way
•   News Bits
•   Understanding the Multi-CAM 2000 AF
•   Events and Exhibitions
•   Book Review: Eye to Eye...
•   Becoming a Pro?
Nikonians Photo Insurance Under Way
We have been working for quite some time to get our own, truly global photography insurance. Now we have identified an A+ rated insurance company and they are creating an insurance exclusively for us Nikonians. If you are a Silver, Gold or Platinum member you can take full advantage of the insurance and the attractive premiums. Our insurance will be available Q4-2005 and we expect to have more information on this coming month.

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Btw, we have received enough feedback on our former insurance questionnaire so there is no need to fill out the form any more - thanks! :-)

Nikonians Tips & Tricks
Something totally different: We have a new section up called "Tips & Tricks". This section holds many short articles with tips and tricks on shooting situations and how to utilize your camera to the optimum. Worth a visit!

More info on Nikonians insurance will be posted here

Falling lenses are attracted to rocks
Understanding the Multi-CAM 2000 AF
Back in the good old days of manual focusing cameras one had to turn the lens ring until the subject looked sharp. If you weren’t fast enough, well, there was always the next frame.

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Nowadays, our cameras are getting smarter and smarter. So many things can be well accomplished by camera automation, including autofocus, that it’s now easier than ever to get professional results; even under pressure.

The Multi-CAM 2000 Autofocus (AF) sensor module in the Nikon D2H, D2Hs, F6, and D2x gives us a powerful tool for professional or advanced amateur use. But, it is imperative that the user of these fine cameras take the time to learn about the four modes of operation in the Multi-CAM 2000. It can seem complicated when reading the manual, but is not so difficult if you’ll spend a little time testing the various modes. Then you’ll understand the best settings for your own photography style.

We will discuss Multi-CAM 2000 from the standpoint of the Nikon D2x’s settings, since this is considered Nikon’s top professional model digital camera. There are some slight variances in custom settings found in the other cameras using Multi-CAM 2000. But, these are only minor differences, so it should pose no problem using this article to understand Multi-CAM 2000 in cameras other than the Nikon D2x. [...]

Read Nikonian Darrell Young's (darrellyoung) full article

Understanding the CAM 2000 AF module
Book Review: Eye to Eye...
Eye to Eye by Frans Lanting
From the Nikonians book and magazine literature section. By Nikonian Conrad Obregon (Obregon)

Frans Lanting is one of the great wildlife photographers of the world. He has published many books showing wild animals but Eye to Eye is certainly one of his most famous. It consists of dramatically close-up photographs of animals, always concentrating on the eyes of the subject.

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The book is divided into three parts: "One on One" shows photographs of single animals, often so close that the frame is filled completely with just the animal’s eyes. "Two by Two" usually shows pairs of animals, although there are occasional shots of larger groups. Often the pictures are of mother and child, or mates, but a few shots show conflict. "All in All" shows shots of larger groups of animals. The book also contains a two page section called "Behind the Camera" in which Lanting discusses his photographic philosophy but provides few hints that will allow others to copy his style. Finally, perhaps because the text of the main sessions is limited to species name, there is a section of thumbnails with a brief statement concerning the picture. I found this section to be particularly inadequate since I often said to myself "How did he do that?" but got no help in finding an answer.

These are amazing pictures, primarily because Lanting has managed to get so close to his subjects. In a few pictures we can see that that is a result of enlarging and cropping, but in most cases the pictures are sharp enough so that so that we realize he was really close to the animals. Moreover, with a few exceptions, these are not captive animals. I for one would not like to take a picture of a wild lion at a distance of twenty feet. At least one critic has suggested that this book raised the bar for all wildlife photographers, forcing them to get closer to their subjects, and placing more stress upon photographers and subject.

There are moments of great intimacy, particularly in the "Two by Two" section, where the pictures of parent and child tug at our heartstrings. It’s hard not to see human characteristics in these photos. The book also benefits from its layout, grouping its subjects by actions. Thus there are pictures of a huge flock of butterflies followed by pictures of ibises, penguins, snow geese, zebras and elephants all purposefully on the move to some destination. I also particularly enjoyed facing pictures of a lion and a leopard, moving toward the centerfold in mirror image.

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These are great photographs because the photographer got so close to his subjects. But they are also mostly documentary. Few of the pictures rise to the level where the form rather than the subject makes them art, although I was particularly struck by a picture of Oryxes carefully treading their way across the Namibian sand dunes. But when I compare Lanting’s photographs to the work of other wildlife photographers like Art Wolfe, I can see the difference. The pictures in Wolfe’s "The Living Wild" show each animal in its environment, where Wolfe was better able to concentrate on the composition of his subjects to create a more artful picture.

Not withstanding this quibble, "Eye to Eye" is a great book, and readers are unlikely to soon forget these close encounters with the other living inhabitants of our planet.

You find more of Nikonian Conrad Obregon's reviews in our book and magazine section

Order this book from Amazon

Eye to Eye by Frans Lanting
News Bits
Nikon Profits Continue to Rise
The first quarter of 2005 was very profitable for Nikon - sales surged for DSLR cameras and chipmaking equipment. Nikon cited a fourfold increase in profits as compared to 1Q2004 for a total of USD69 million (7.76 Billion Yen). See the Bloomberg article for more details.


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FotoStation special upgrade offer!
If you received a FotoStation when buying your Nikon camera, this is your chance to upgrade to the professional level with FotoStation Pro at www.fotoware.com/Shop
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SD Card Announcements Galore
Hot on the heels of the Pretec 4GB card, Kingston launches a 120x 2GB SD card in their Ultimate line, while EdgeTech puts up a similar sized competitor at 130x in their ProShot family of flash cards.

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Red River Paper offers quality, affordable photo inkjet papers for virtually any printer. Choose from a variety of paper types in all sizes. Special offer for Nikonians Readers!
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Gitzo and Nikon Equipment for Nikonians
Join fellow Nikonians on the 2nd European Wildlife Workshop and get your hands on the latest Nikon Pro bodies, Nikkor super-telephotos and pro Gitzo tripods.

Shoot bisons, bears, wolves, lynx, red deer and wild boars in their natural habitat, enjoy and learn the basics of wildlife photography, as well as some advanced tips & tricks.
http://www.nikonians.org/html/workshops/bavaria/index.html

HP Purchases SciTex in Printer Line Expansion
In a move to expand it's presence in the industrial printer market, Hewlett-Packard announced it's purchase of Scitex Vision, an Israeli manufacturer of super-wide printers used in signage and other industrial applications. The move complements HP's considerable inventory of high-end large format printers and grants the larger manufacturer access to Scitex's proprietary print head technology.

News on your desktop
Subscribe to the Nikonians RSS feed and get frequent updates from the Imaging and Photo Industry with a Nikonians touch. The news system is located at blog.nikonians.org and you find the RSS 2.0 feed at www.nikonians.org/index.xml

See the Nikonians News for latest updates

Nikonians 2nd Wildlife Workshop in Europe
Events and Exhibitions
05-Jun-05 to 11-Sep-05 - Graz, Austria
A comprehensive exhibition reflecting the dynamic development of Japanese art during recent decades.
Camera Austria, Kunsthaus Graz, Lendkai 1, 8020 Graz
http://www.camera-austria.at/ca_events.cfm?cat=1

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23-Jun-05 to 30-Sep-05 - Prague, Czechoslovakia
Three exhibits exploring the growth and influence of Czech photography in the 20th century.
Museum of Decorative Arts
http://www.radio.cz/en/current/arts

15-Jul-05 to 28-Aug-05 - Sydney, Australia
Erwin Olaf's sophisticated and provocative portraits of contemporary consumer society.
Australian Centre for Photography
Paddington, Sydney
http://www.acp.au.com

09-Oct-05 to 13-Oct-05
Nikonians 5th ANPAT - South Dakota, USA
We're visiting Mount Rushmore National Memorial, Custer State Park, Wind Cave National Park, Badlands National Park and Iron Mountain Road. Shooting autumn scenics, landscapes and wildlife.
http://www.nikonians.org/html/workshops/anpat5/index.html

See also our Calendar Contribution Forum

Custer Park - The Upcoming 5th ANPAT
Becoming a Pro?
There are many of us at Nikonians that have dreams of becoming professionals. Some of us have taken the leap and are making a living on photography. According to how we rate ourselves, 10% of us are full time professionals and another 12% are semi-professionals. In our wedding photography forum, many semi-professionals and pro's meet to discuss their work and love for photography. Other waterholes for semi-pro's and pro's are


If you feel drained and need inspiriation or just want to read what the pro's are saying, you may want to check out these forums. While we are at it, did you read the On Location article by Nikonian Pro David Haynes? If not, check out The Nikonian #28

For Inspiration - Visit the Wedding Forum

By Nikonian Taylor Vaughan in our Wedding & Photography Forum
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