Just came across this article by William Newton at The Federalist online about the exhibit at the National Portrait Gallery in Washington D...
Yesterday, I received a book of photos I had created from a Flickr gallery using Flickr's online book-making app. I was fairly pleased. ...
The process in FlickrThe process of selecting the photos and layout out the book was about as easy as it could possibly be, partly because Flickr has provided a very good online app for this task, and partly because their app has very few options. I've only used it this once and perhaps I missed something, but I didn't see a way to add text anywhere except on the cover. No way, for example, to print those captions that I had laboriously entered. Still, pulling the photos from the gallery in Flickr was simplicity itself. I reorganized a few photos, rejected some of the photos in the gallery, and adjusted crop or display on the page—et voilà: book! Hit the order button and cough up some money, and about a week later, I was able to present the book to my wife. (The book contains my favorite images from our recent fortieth-anniversary trip up California's scenic route 1. You can see the gallery here.)
My book had about 100 images in it, so about 100 pages. Cost a little under $100, including shipping. I think this is roughly on par with the cost of a similar book ordered through Apple or Blurb.
|Like a normal hardcover photo book, my Flickr book was not designed to lie flat. Not a problem for me, especially given the reasonable price.|
The qualityThe quality of the Flickr book is pretty good. All the images had been processed on my color-calibrated computer and uploaded to Flickr in sRGB colorspace, so I wasn't surprised that the colors in the book were accurate, but I was pleased nevertheless. I've occasionally had bad experiences with other publishers. The book is hard cover, with a dust jacket, and the pages are reasonably thick. The images are printed with no smearing and good detail. Again, on a par with the experience I've had ordering books from, say, Blurb.
Why a book?I've said it before, but it bears repeating. If you want to have access to your photos in the future, print them. Do not count on being able to access today's digital images easily—or at all—in thirty or forty years. If you want your photos to last, print them.
There isn't any question that the best way to print your photos is individually, on high-quality photo paper. Print large—8" x 10", 13" x 19" or larger—and then frame your photos. That's the way to do it right, especially for individual images.
But if you have a lot of photos on the same theme—say, from a birthday or wedding or a family vacation—a book is a very reasonable option. Here again, making (or ordering) individual prints and placing them into a photo album is the way to get the best quality.
But a printed and bound book has significant advantages. Ordering a book from Flickr (or Blurb, or Apple or Snapfish etc.) is like going to a local casual restaurant for dinner. It's convenient and easy, you'll probably have lots of options especially regarding sizing of images, and the results will be satisfying. The printed and bound book looks nice on your shelf. This wasn't really an option with Flickr but with most other book-making services, you'll have the option of printing your photos at different sizes, including sizes that aren't on the usual photo-paper size menu. For example, I like to put my images online with a 16:9 aspect ratio. They look good on computer monitors. Now 16:9 isn't a normal photo paper size and I often have to recrop when making individual prints. But Flickr's bookmaking app accepted those images exactly as I had prepared them for on-screen display and they look fine in the book.
I should add that making high-quality framed prints is likely to emphasize the weaknesses of weak images, and everybody takes weak photos. Putting photos into a book is way to blend the weaker images in with the stronger ones. The interest you have in the story will carry the images, where an individual framed print needs to stand on its own.
So the individual framed or matted print is the best way to view individual images. But a printed and bound book is a convenient way to get a durable collection of a group of photos. If you use Flickr, give their book-making service a try. It's not better than the best of the competition in this class, but it's darned convenient.
Winfrey Point at Sunset Arthur Maxwell insisted on a walk this evening, so we hopped in the truck and rolled over to the lake fo...
Arthur Maxwell insisted on a walk this evening, so we hopped in the truck and rolled over to the lake for a quick walk before sunset. This photo was taken looking east towards Winfrey Point; the lake was behind me as I took the shot, and the sun was setting in the west. Not a remarkable sunset by Texas's very high standards.
The image displayed here is on loan from Flickr. You can visit it at home here.
Two settings in the DxO ONE app that will help your battery last a little longer It is what it is: The DxO ONE's battery runs d...
|Two settings in the DxO ONE app that will help your battery last a little longer|
It is what it is: The DxO ONE's battery runs down pretty quickly. Here are a few ways to make it last.
1. Don't automatically show the last photo you tookWith the DxO ONE connected to your iPhone, go into the gear/settings screen, Capture tab, and set 'Show picture aftershot' (sic) to 'Never.'
This is good advice no matter what camera you're using. Take the time to think about your settings and compose your shots carefully, then have some confidence in the results. Sure, we all glance at a shot now and then, but 'chimping' (looking at every shot) not only eats up battery power, it prevents you from learning to shoot with confidence.
By the way, if you take this tip, you can still see the last photo you took whenever you really want to, simply by tapping the thumbnail in the upper left corner of the DxO ONE app's shooting screen. Tap on the camera icon to return to shooting.
2. Don't automatically write to the iPhoneBy default, the DxO ONE is configured to store the master files (say, your raw or SuperRaw files) on the camera's internal card but also to copy a jpeg over to the iPhone. Unfortunately, this default behavior runs the battery down more quickly. So change it. With the DxO ONE connected to your iPhone go to the gear/settings screen, Capture tab, scroll down to 'Store photos on' and select 'microSD card only'.
If you take this tip, you can still move selected individual files to the camera later, if you want to. For example, you might want to process an image on the phone in Photos, or Snapseed or Photogene4 (to name just two of my faves).
And note also that you do not need to move files to the phone just to post to Facebook or Google+, save to Dropbox, or send to a friend by Message or Mail. You can do that right in the DxO ONE app, by selecting a picture and tapping the Share icon.
For some users, there may be an additional benefit to disabling the camera's default behavior. If you have your iCloud account set up to sync photos on your iPhone automatically with iCloud and thus with your computer, you are moving jpeg copies of your DxO ONE photos to the computer through iCloud, and then moving copies of the very same photos to the computer when you import from the camera later using DxO Connect. This may result in you having duplicate copies of jpegs on your computer, in different places. The fewer photos you copy over to the phone, the less troublesome thing problem will be.
3. Turn off the camera when you're not shootingUnless you're going to take another shot immediately, after you take a shot, slide the lens cover up to turn the camera off. It's easy.
To be honest, this doesn't actually save a lot of battery power, because as of firmware version 1.2 (January 2016), the DxO ONE puts itself to sleep very quickly. But sliding the lens cover shut has two other good side effects that make it worth doing. It minimizes the risk of dust getting into the lens well. And it also solves what can be a pretty regular problem using the DxO ONE, namely, waking the thing up so you can shoot. In my experience, when the camera puts itself to sleep, it will sometimes freeze in that state, so that the only way I can wake it up again is to restart it (slide up the lens cover, then slide down again). Keeping the cover shut whenever I'm not shooting means that, to get ready for my next shot, I simply have to slide the cover down. The DxO ONE starts up in just a second or two and I'm good to go.
4. And just in case, have an auxiliary battery on handI love the DxO ONE. It's a terrific camera and it's terrifically portable, so I take it with me just about everywhere, and when I'm out shooting, I really enjoy using it. Unfortunately, because the tiny battery inside this tiny camera is pretty anemic, shooting actively with the DxO ONE means that I run out of power pretty quickly—even following all the tips above.
So I almost always have an auxiliary battery with me. There are a number of these available, but when I was writing the Macworld review of the DxO ONE, one of the folks I interviewed at DxO recommended the Jackery Giant, so that's what I got. It's terrific, too. Unless I'm going to step away from my car for hours, I don't take the Jackery Giant with me. I leave it in the car, and then plug the DxO ONE in when I'm in the car. But the Giant isn't all that big; fits comfortably in my back pocket. Next time I hike the Grand Canyon, I'll carry the Giant with me.
|Yay, my DxO ONE's battery is at 100%!|
Trees in the flood near Dixon Branch I love fog, I mean, just for its own sake. When I was in college, on foggy nights I loved to get i...
|Trees in the flood near Dixon Branch|
I love fog, I mean, just for its own sake. When I was in college, on foggy nights I loved to get in the car and drive around just to savor the sense of mystery that the fog brings in. A couple of my favorites among my own photos are "fog shots": a picture of the University of Dallas tower, another of the Grand Canyon filled with fog. Anyway, when I woke up this morning, looked out my window and realized I couldn't see the back yard, I grabbed my iPhone and the DxO ONE, jumped in the truck and drove over to the lake.
The whole gallery contains just five photos and is online over at Flickr: click here to view.
|Tree in fog at White Rock Lake|
Will be posting more soon from our trip to California at the end of 2015, but looking through my photos from the trip, I was struck by this ...
The photo was taken with the DxO ONE. Here's how it looks by default when opened in DxO Optics Pro 10. The three images that follow are all PNG screen captures from my Macbook Pro.
|Default rendering in DxO Optics Pro|
|Default rendering in ON1 Photo 10|
Here it is in Lightroom 6 or whatever it's called now:
|Default rendering in Lightroom 6|
My point here isn't to knock ON1 Photo 10, which I continue to like, despite the fact that months after release it's still got a few bugs that annoy me. I simply want to point out that some raw processors do better with images from certain cameras than others do. The software that came with my Olympus E-M1 is not very good in a general sense, but it does render the E-M1's ORF files really well. Not surprising, since that's precisely what it was designed to do. DxO Optics Pro 10 is designed to be a much more universally useful raw processor, but it shouldn't be too surprising that it does a particularly good job with files created by the DxO ONE camera. The mother bear knows her own cubs.