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Posts posted by Duncan_Andison

  1. Within the last year, according to 'All of Alamy' stats:


    "Landscape" as an individual search term was searched for 45 times.

    "Car" as an individual search term was searched for 467 times.


    That's a ten-fold demand for something you can find outside your front door.


    Stock is not art, it's not even regular "photography". It's about the production of images that are useful to sell things, or in the case of editorial, to illustrate a point of view or concept. By all means shoot misty landscapes and arty scenes, but don't expect to make many sales.




    1+ I've made more from an image of a pair of muddy walking boots on a white background than I have from sunset landscape shots! But that's what I enjoy, it's about making the ordinary look good and useable. I just ask myself now, how would/could I use the image if I was a publisher. If I struggle to think of a way then it's probably not worth it. 

  2. Not good.... nothing this month so far. I've rolling zooms of about 28 so I hope they are all just waiting to convert  :D


    Now, if only I had the same ration of income here as I do with my microstock stuff. 70 Files with SS and more often than not I get a dollar per file each month. Maybe I should spend more time on shooting stuff for them  :rolleyes: The $28 downloads are nice

    • Upvote 1

  3. I've probably been banging on the wrong doors lately that's all. It's easier to shoot 'editorial' type stuff and hope for the best, that to pay real attention. I guess it goes back to having the time. You only get out what you put in and all that. 


    I get about 800-1000 views a month, and maybe 2-3 zooms. It's actually laughable, but what do I expect from a library of 'quick snaps' while out walking... 


    There is no truer critique than a hundred views/zooms and no sales - That's my quote lol 


    Quick walks can be good money earners. Think of all the magazines and walking holiday brochures etc. When I go out climbing, scrambling or walking I normally jog on a head or hang back to capture either my wife or other people scrambling over rocks etc with nice backdrops etc. They can be used to illustrate walks and places very nicely.

  4. I started off purely as a landscape photographer but ended up doing all sorts, outdoor activity stuff through to taking a picture of a pile of coins or one of myself driving a car at night..... anything. I like to have fun with the camera but now I try to find subject matter that will sell better. It doesn't mean I don't take sunsets on the tops of mountains, I still do it often but I try to add people in at times or enough of the surrounding landscape that will illustrate where I was and what it was like.... The feeling of being in the middle of nowhere with amazing views and having it all to yourself. That's often what my customers clients want to see. Something that might inspire them to do it...... as long as it's not the same time I'm up there..... they are all mine you know  :D


    Here's a new one from this month. Summit of Robinson in Buttermere.



    • Upvote 1

  5. My first sale.... only last year  :D  I wish I had started a lot sooner.


    Started submitting slowly in June 2012, and picked up pace since Feb this year (added 2000+ images since then). 18 Sales to date.


    Country: Worldwide
    Usage: Magazine, editorial print and digital use, repeat use within a single issue
    Industry sector: Media, design & publishing
    Start: 23 August 2012
    End: 23 August 2017 $ 30.51



  6. I'm also a X-E1 user and jumped at the Capture One 7 Express special offer, which happened to coincide with the end of my 60 day free trial period. That said, I shoot jpeg+RAW and only use the RAW on an 'as required' basis - no sense in practice bleeding when the jpegs are of such high quality.


    Very true. The OOC Jpgs are superb. They have a lovely feel to them. If I am taking stock / work photos I often just use raw as it fits with my workflow, especially landscape stuff when I want to get as much detail as possible. That said, for personel / home stuff I use jpgs as I know the colours and detail will look great and there will be no requirement to print at 20x30inch.

  7. Dick J,


    I have migrated to mirror-less cameras for my stock photography and now only use my D3 only for commercial work. I use the Fuji X100 and Fuji X-E1 cameras. They are light weight, have analog manual controls ( I shoot in manual mode) and great image quaintly. The x100 has as good or a bit better IQ then the D3 and the X-E1 is better than that.


    Now when I travel I use a ThinkTank briefcase that holds both cameras, chargers, cords, extra batteries, ipad and misc stuff. Much nicer then lugging around a wheeled case.


    Hope this helps,


    David L. Moore


    +1 I have just migrated over to the X Pro1. I would compare it to the Canon 5dmkii in terms of Raw file quality when processed in Capture 1. The lenses are superb quality and the whole package is very light. I took the camera for a couple of days hike on the summits in the Lakes with the 14mm, 35mm, 60mm, 18-55 and 55-200 and the whole lot weighs less than the 5dmkii & 100-400 lens. Can't believe I used to carry that plus a 17-40L and spares up and down mountains.


    Oh, the weight of all 5 lenses and x pro1 + batteries came to about 1900grams

  8. Do you happen to have compared the Fujinon 60mm Macro to the Canon 100mm L-IS Macro. AFAIK the fujinon only goes half size macro?


    No. I had the Sigma 150 f/2.8 for the 5dmkii. That was a lovely lens and was 1:1 magnification. The Fuji is 1:2 magnification but is very good. It is very sharp even wide open at 2.4 and by f/4 it is extremely sharp edge to edge... to the point I dial down sharpness when processing, very nice bokeh as well. It won't however break any speed records with autofocus, as with most macro lenses but out of macro mode it is quite good!

  9. Great, that makes it all a bit easier to choose. They're all just great! ;-)

    :D The only one I took back was the 18mm, nothing really wrong with it but the 18-55 zoom was very good throughout it's range.... again! The 60mm is extremely sharp and is excellent for close up studio work as well as the usual portrait / landscape shots.


    Seriously, take a look at the £35 copy of Capture 1. Or, trial it first. I have been processing X Pro1 files all day and shots I was having problems with LR 4.4 are perfectly fine in Capture 1. They remind me of the files from the 5dmkii. I'm really glad I went over to it now.


    Nearly went for the X-E1 myself but fancied the OVF. The lenses are top notch and worth investing in over time.


    Sure going to give Capture 1 a try... And indeed, for 35£, (after the trial) it's never going to be a very bad purchase...

    As for the lenses... We are used to using Canon's L lenses, and initially we bought the X-E1 thinking the quality would be ok, but not great, but wow... these lenses ROCK! and compared to L-glass, they're almost for free :-)


    Ha ha.... tell me about it. I had a 17-40L and 100-400L and loved them both, especially the long zoom as it was sharp throughout the range. Well, I have been processing the first proper shots with the 55-200 and it matches it for sharpness, right the way up ro 200mm. I love long lenses for landscape shots and I was really missing a high quality zoom with the Nex, they were ok centre but not edge to edge like this is. The 14mm is incredibly sharp...to be honest, there isn't really a duff one amongst them.

  11. We just bought the Fujifilm X-E1 last week, and using the raws in LR 4.4 was so disappointing we are now constantly shooting RAW+Jpeg, and only using the RAW's when it is really needed.

    But ehm... Pretty amazing camera I must say... (Our other camera's are Canon 5D- and 1D-ish things).


    Seriously, take a look at the £35 copy of Capture 1. Or, trial it first. I have been processing X Pro1 files all day and shots I was having problems with LR 4.4 are perfectly fine in Capture 1. They remind me of the files from the 5dmkii. I'm really glad I went over to it now.


    Nearly went for the X-E1 myself but fancied the OVF. The lenses are top notch and worth investing in over time.

  12. I'm contemplating LR5, so it's good to see your comments, Duncan.

    I've found LR 4.4 a noticeable improvement for processing raw files from the x trans sensor, so I'm happy to stick with LR for now.

    As for 'reds,' I've not had an issue with this & tend to tweak saturation/luminance in the red channel if needed.



    No problem. In LR 4.4 I only had occasional issues with water colour effect but I could see any difference with problem files in 5 when compared to 4.4. If you need or like the other features in LR5 then it's work going for, otherwise it might not be really worth it if you are just looking to resolve that issue. It would be best to trial it first so you can do plenty of side by side comparisons first. You can run 4.4 and 5 as separate apps on a Mac and I would imagine it's the same on a PC.


    In the end, I liked it enough to go back and get the Pro version and I'm now tweaking my work stream to suit. It offers very similar tools with some additions. I really like the layers system, Keystone tool is really good and easy to use. It looks like it will provide enough control to not need PS at all. Time will tell. For now though, LR will be an upload / plugin tool only and processing will be done in Capture One Pro 7.

  13. I'm still suffering from wind-angle quality problems with what's available for the NEX system.


    Sunday I went up to the New York Public Library on Fifth Avenue. I need to get something for a writer friend's Website. I shot with the Sony Zeiss 24 (36 view) and the Sony 16 (24 view). Nothing I shot with the 16 made the cut—very disappointing. Don't bother suggesting the Sigma 19. I own the Sigma 30 and I'm underwhelmed with it. The Sony 10-18? I don't need a wide zoom and I'm not going to drop that kind of money. Thank god I still have the D700 with the 20 and the 14-24. (I plan to sell the 14-24.) 


    For UWA there is always the 12mm Voigtlander.


    I'm sure it doesn't leave a colour cast on the Nex 6 and on the 7, it can be removed with Cornerfix. Focusing is a dream for a manual lens. You set it to focus from half metre out at f/5.6 - f/8 and everything is in focus! I used it on the Nex 7 a lot and still do with the X Pro 1. It's very handy to take photos while out rock scrambling / climbing and not having to to worry about focusing... Just point and shoot! Not as expensive as the 10-18, but still not cheap at about £500 (instead f £670 for the 10-18). Adapters are about £20.


    Hi There, from what I have seen, the zoom is quite good but if you use it with a Nex 7, there will be a colour shift in the corners but not as much as a Voigtlander lens. I think it may correct this in Jpgs but not raws. There was a discussion about this on DPReview. This isn't a problem with the lens but the way the Nex7 reacts to any UWA lens. Hopefully this will help.


    Thanks very much Duncan, guess I may wait on wider angle for now.


    No problem, there is a programme called cornerfix that will correct it. It adds to the processing a little but not massively.... it's an option if you like using UWA. 

  15. I've decided to take the plunge and have upgraded to a NEX 7 and 24mm Zeiss, both bought second hand through KEH.  (Paid about $750/$850 respectively and will sell my NEX 5 eventually.)  Apologies if this has been discussed, but has anyone tried the Sony 10-18 zoom?  Luminous Landscape gave it a good review.  Thanks


    Hi There, from what I have seen, the zoom is quite good but if you use it with a Nex 7, there will be a colour shift in the corners but not as much as a Voigtlander lens. I think it may correct this in Jpgs but not raws. There was a discussion about this on DPReview. This isn't a problem with the lens but the way the Nex7 reacts to any UWA lens. Hopefully this will help.

  16. Hi, thought I would start up a thread to record findings etc for this camera and sensor, especially after seeing that LR5 has just been released. I had a bit play with LR5 and compared it with LR 4.4 and did not see any difference to the way it handles X Trans senors Raw files.


    However, what I have found is that Capture One 7 are offering 50% off their Capture One Express 7 package. After VAT etc it works out as £35. I downloaded a trial copy to begin with and after a few hours testing it alongside LR4 & 5, I have found that it renders the colours, details and sharpening of X Trans files better than I was getting with LR. This is a little bit of a headache as I use LR quite heavily. That said, for £35 I am going to use Capture One as a Raw/DNG converter and then use LR to manage Tiffs/Jpgs as well as my catalog, sorting and uploading etc.


    The offer on Capture One is on until the 16th June. They are also offering 20% off their pro package but as they don't offer plugins for Photoshelter or Alamy, I think I will stick with the Express version to process raw files.


    Link to Offer


    Link to Comparison - Express vs Pro


    The sharpening controls with Capture one seem to offer a lot finer control and the odd RAW files that exhibited a water colour effect in LR don't appear to do so in Capture One?!?.... and, it also seems to control reds a lot better. This really surprised me as in LR some images with red flowers blocked out completely but didn't in CO 7.


    Anyway, as a free trial it is well worth looking at!




    • Upvote 1

  17. No problem Martyn. Neither system is perfect (but what is :-). Here are a couple of observations from both sides.


    1. Autofocus can be inaccurate at times, front or back focusing leaving the image soft. Sometimes you can reduce the image size to rescue sometimes not.
    2. If you like UWA lenses, the Nex 7 will leave a colour cast in the corners that needs to be taken out with Cornerfix. Easy enough but it is an extra step in the processing. This adds time if you have 100's of shots which I sometimes did. If you use UWA lenses and want the Nex, look at the Nex 6. It handles them a lot better.
    3. Poor noise handling over 800 ISO. I rarely shot over 800 with the Nex7 as the amount of noise mixed in with the detail seemed messy (Raw Images). The 5dmkii had very clean files and the detail didn't look grainy when you did go to 1600 ISO.
    4. There are a lot more lenses available for the Nex but I found the 24mm to be the only one that was at a near professional level quality like Canon's L series. Even then, purple and green fringing was evident between f/1.8 and f/4 and was tricky to shift at times. The sony 35mm had similar issue with fringing.
    5. Rubber grip falls off the Nex 7 after a while. I had mine about 8 months before it had to be repaired.
    6. Loved the way you could see the effects of the settings in the view finder or on the screen in manual mode, very useful.
    7. Great flip screen and good controls felt very natural to use.
    8. Better EVF. Very nice but no optical option.

    X Pro1

    1. Autofocusing speed has been vastly improved in firmware 2 but still needs a little work.
    2. Raw files have improved a lot since LR 4.3 but again, need improving to meet bayer sensor standards. You have to be careful with Clarity, Sharpening, Details and contrast controls. If you switch noise reduction off in camera and take it easy with these sliders the watercolour effect is greatly reduced and in 99% of shots, none existant.
    3. Better eyecup with detection sensors inside the eyecup needed, there is no dioptric adjustment.
    4. Doesn't have a flip screen, would be nice but that would takeaway from the rangefinder feel it has.
    5. Focus selection buttons poorly positioned. They may be able to change this in firmware by adding custom settings, not sure. Makes it a little tricky to change focus spot while looking through the viewfinder.
    6. Tripod thread off centre. Doesn't effect me greatly as I use the grip that puts it back in the centre. The grip is very nice.
    7. Goes through batteries a little quicker than the Nex. I have 5 just in case when I am out on 1-2 day camping treks. They are about a £10 a peace so no hardship but it would be nice to have stronger batteries.
    8. Fuji colours. The jpgs and the raw files have lovely colours and take less to process than the Nex7. Remember, go easy with the sharpening as the files are very sharp to start with. The 60mm especially. I often reduce the sharpening from 25 in LR to 10-15 with that lens.
    9. Lenses are beautiful. The 18mm is good but the 18-55 is just as good at 18 so didn't bother with it but the rest are amazing lenses. I don't feel the need to change these or look for anything better. They feel like pro DSLR standard in IQ and build.
    10. The camera is fun to use. By that I mean the controls are near perfect (excluding the autofocus point select). Aperture on the lens, speed on the dial, iso on the fn button and the ability to flip between OVF and EVF very easily.
    11. Nearly forgot about the OVF. Very clever, use the parallax correction option and it's brilliant. Makes a big difference with some styles of shooting. See people about to walk into shot so you can capture them or miss them. The optical has two zoom strengths as well so you can see even more of what's going on around you.
    12. Last but not least. Auto ISO. I often set this to auto 3200 and know that even shots at 3200 will be useable. I have uploaded some here and no issues or any rejections from this camera. My last 600 uploads are from this camera and I have processed another 500 to be uploaded soon. Brilliant low light capabilities.... silly... shouldn't be possible good :-) and better than the 5dmkii.

    There we have it. Now I have wrote this down I can see why I preferred the fuji over the Nex. BUT, I did enjoy using the Nex7 and it is a very capable camera. In the end though the Fuji won out for me and I have grown to really like the retro style look which I wasn't fond of to begin with.

  18. Thank you Richard ! I have been looking at the Fuji+35 lens,looks pretty good and I like the reviews on its high iso/low light capabilities....something I have come to rely on with my Nikon D700....but was impressed with the Nex results and do like the tilt screen for candids.I just can't get on without a viewfinder which is why I struggle with the GF1.The only thing I was not impressed with on first handling with the NEX was the incredibly flimsy looking pop up flash !! Guess I will need to try out the Fuji as well and try to keep the worm can lid securely fastened !!! Just out of interest,what have you found with the Fuji that is a cause of concern?


    I wasn't intending to buy the Fuji system, the guy in Jessops convinced me to try it on the basis that if I didn't like it I would be able to return it to them within 30 days. If you are near a Jessops (not many of them now) give it a try and if you don't like it, take it back. That way you will be able to find out first hand as to whether it is something you will like!

  19. Martyn. The biggest problem(s) with the XP1, as far as I am concerned, is the poor RAW conversion support and the very slow and, more importantly, inconsistent focus. The NEX has very slow focus, but it is at least consistent in its results.


    I do actually use the XP1 quite a lot, but I have to pick and choose my subjects. I suggest you Google "X Pro 1 watercolour effect" to see what I am talking about on the RAW issue. There are a number of (extreme) examples of this particular anomaly. An anomaly that is bloody annoying to say the least!


    It is slightly better since adobe improved(?) the X Trans process, but not significantly.


    It is a damn good camera but............ you wouldn't want to rely on it for everything. Depends what you specialise in possibly. I am particularly annoyed with Fuji because I have spent some 2,000 quid on body and lenses for a camera which does not deliver, and further have had to spend out on another system, i.e.. NEX in order to cover Fuji's failings.


    The NEX system is very, very good. I have the Zeiss 24 which is  excellent and the Sigma 19, 30 and 60. But, the NEX can't match the XP1 when it comes to high ISO, in my opinion anyway.


    Its another case of horses for courses.


    Funny, this is the exact opposite to what I have found ( apart from the high ISO bit ;-). I guess it depends on what you shoot. I'm a landscape, outdoor climbing as well as general stock and studio stuff type of guy and I have found it works very nicely for that.


    The X Pro 1 has slightly slower autofocus but unlike the Nex 7, it nails it every time. the number of OOF shots I was getting with the Nex7 was becoming irritating  The shear quality of Fuji's lenses amazed me and after 2 weeks use, I sold the Nex 7, Sigma 19mm, Zeiss 24, Sony 35mm 55-210 and 18-200. The bad purple fringing on the 24mm annoyed me a little given the £850 price tag. 


    I have the 14mm, 35mm, 60mm, 18-55 & recently the 55-200. All are very sharp and more than fast enough for me. That said, if you are a sports shooter, forget it but that applied to almost all mirrorless systems to be honest.


    Using LR 4.4 and Beta 5 and the raws are good no major concerns. I turned the incamera noise reduction off as it tended to create a painted/watercolour effect. Yes they could still improve but more than acceptable. I found I was always reducing the resolution of Nex7 images to tighten them up. I haven't had to do that with Xpro1.


    Like you said, excellent high ISO performance. Outperforms the 5Dmkii I have by possibly 1 stop. The quality of the 55-200 was enough for me to finally sell the Canon 100-400L. A lens I loved. The 60mm is near on perfect lens in terms of detail and bokeh. The 14mm and 35mm are both amazing as well. The 18-55mm is extremely good and provides images close to the quality of the Ziess 24mm, with no fringing.


    Don't get me wrong, it ain't perfect. Annoying things like hunting in very low light but change it to manual and use the AE-L to focus and it hits it straight away! It sort of suggests they can make the Autofocus work. A big firmware release is due in July... maybe they will improve it further, even though it is more than manageable now. The eye sensor is overridden when the sun is shinning low behind you, makes the camera go to screen even when you eye is up against the OVF. You can set the display to view finder only to get round this. And, Batteries could last longer as well... 300 shots per battery.


    I think what really sold it for me is their approach to lenses. They have gone all out to produce beautiful glass and this makes a big difference. The Fuji 55-200 is on a different planet compared to the Sony 55-210 or 18-200.


    I loved the Nex 7 Tri Navi system, flip screen and size but I couldn't live with the inconsistent quality after being used to the 5dmkii. For me, the fuji has matched and in a lot of ways, beaten the 5dmkii.

  20. 1.>> I despair

    2.>> you can submit RM and you have a "lottery ticket" for "THE sale"


    1. As do I -- streak of workdays without missing license since March 15 appears to be ending today.

    That's about 50 straight days of mixed smaller & bigger licenses.  Smaller = padding.

    If you start now shooting/processing at rate of 5 total minutes/image, you, too, can have 100K

    salable images in 4 years @52 40-hr weeks/yr.  Your stats may vary if unreleased RM is not your thing.


    2. See #1.  No longer a lottery for some -- adequate volume/variety/salability = reliability. (knock knock)


    Related: in debate about who's taking prices downward, new evidence = Getty;

    Getty appears to now be primary stock provider to HuffPost;

    Alamy was getting us $27-29 gross/image?;

    reports are Getty contribs will get pennies per image;

    Alamy did NOT go down that microbial path, AFAICT...

    (not true?  correction details appreciated)


    Heck, I need to pick up the pace.... I thought I was doing well with a 1000 images this month. That's only have the rate you mention  :o  :)  ;)

  21. QC has been very speedy for me lately. Batches uploaded on June 3rd and June 5th passed within 12 hours, which was a relief since I spent the not-so-merry month of May twiddling my thumbs in the sin bin.


    IME submissions uploaded on weekends can take a bit longer, typically 2-3 days. Good luck.


    Same here. I tend to up load images at night and they have been checked off 9-10am the next morning. Sometimes, if I have uploaded a batch the night before and I have a few left, I do them first thing and they are passed off the same time as the ones from the night before.


    I start at 6:30am so I can normally get quite a few uploaded in the morning before they start checking. Tend to send batches of between 150-300 at a time.

  22. None of mine do.


    Is this because the IQ pricing structure does not take these into account?


    Here's the description of a IQ sale this month that I had on an RF image


    "Usage: iQ sale: Magazine, editorial print and digital use, up to 1/4 page, inside, repeat use within a single issue"


    Looking back at others over the last few months and not many state image size but all do confirm single issue only with a 5 year time limit (for back issue production I would imagine)

  23. Why do I read these threads...  as now I want one of these sony RX100 cameras :) ,  I have been thinking about a small camera for some time now for those occasions when smaller might be better, just last week I was traveling around the isle of mull and it would have been very handy for taking discreet food shots in pubs etc where everyone takes notice of a DSLR but no one give you a second look when you are using a point and shoot and as Sheila mentioned it would be useful when I am out on my motorcycles,  as it always makes me cringe when I put my D700 and lenses in the pannier bags :o ..


    I have always been put off by the lack of viewfinder on these types of camera, but from what I am reading it doesn't seem much of a problem...


    And after just looking on WEX photographic I see they have them in stock for £499.00 and delivered by Thursday...Just about to push the button and become a RX100 owner..(please dont start any threads praising the Nikon D4 ;)  )




    Hold the buy button..... Try Jessops, It's £449...(keep the £50 for a couple of spare batteries and a few beers :-).


    I picked one up a couple of weeks ago as a mini me for my Fuji x-pro1.... very handy little cameras, so small!

  24. I have considered the plug-in but have not tried it yet as I was concerned that it makes changes to the LR database.  I send images to other agencies, not just Alamy so I was worried that the keywords would be altered in some way that would make sending the image elsewhere difficult.


    I have a few questions about the plug-in if you don't mind? 

    When you fetch the keywords from Alamy are the keywords then added to the LR keyword database? 

    Are the Essential and Main keyword fields not available in LR?  I mean could you not type them into the those fields in LR and then set the information up to Alamy?

    I would think one of the big attractions of the plug-in (at least to me) is adding all the keywords in LR and then sending them to the proper spots in ALamy, if it does not do this I think I'll just stick with doing it with Manage Images 2.4


    When you fetch data from Alamy the keywords from essential ad comprehensive are added to your Keywords section of the LR database. You can chose not to overwrite though.


    You can send keywords from LR to Alamy but it seems to want to put them in Comprehensive and from there, you have to move them to either main or essential. I would prefer to be able to add keywords in LR and for them to go to either essential or main as required..... maybe they might do this in the future or, it might not be possible..... not sure.

    Thanks for the info on the Plugin Duncan. It sounds that it might do the trick. However, when I followed your link it implied that you had to upload from Lightroom, while I normally do a bit of fiddling about in PS prior to uploading.  Is there a work around for that?


    You don't have to upload images via LR, I always send them through the upload feature with Alamy. The plugin has three options. 1) upload images 2) upload Metadata and 3) Fetch Metadata.


    Like yourself, I sometimes tweaked images in PS first and, more importantly, I like to QC the jpgs before they go :-) don't want a 30 day sin bin for something LR has done wrong!

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