WRITE AN ESSAY, WIN A LEICA: FINALIST ENTRIES

We had a tremendous response to our essay contest and want to thank everyone who took the time to send us their essay!

All finalists will see their entries published here on the pages of Field Photographer now through the 28th, with the final selection and winner announced February 28th! Both Andrew Tonn and myself are going over all entries and selecting our favorites then comparing notes. As a bonus a special selection will be made by Gary Crickmore proprietor of World of photography in Columbus Ohio.

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SANDQVIST X HASSELBLAD BAGS

Photo from Sandqvist’s website

The minimalist Swedish accessories brand Sandqvist partnered with Hasselblad not long ago, releasing a line of bags specifically designed with the Hasselblad X1D in mind. Now these exclusive camera bags are on sale through Sandqvist marked down 50%. They feature a removable camera compartment, laptop sleeve, multiple zippered pockets and leather straps and accents, as well as Hasselblad and Sandqvist shared brand in the form of a small patch on the front. Not sure if it’s the right bag for you? We have a full hands on review coming soon. $339.00 $169.50 USD LINK  FP

SAND COBRA CAMERA STRAP PRE-ORDER UP NOW

Sand Pack Co is now offering a pre-order for their newest camera strap. The strap sports a military inspired design and features an attractive olive, black and orange color theme. Pre-orders are available in each of the Cobra Straps two sizes, a 1.0″ wide style and a slightly wider strap at 1.5″ – both styles feature a Cobra D-ring attachment point, a reinforced 500d Cordura neck panel, Molle pouch attachment loops and are handmade in Portland, Oregon. Pre-orders ship in February. $160 USD LINK FP

HOW TO BE A BETTER PHOTOG: STUDY GREATNESS

All good books are alike in that they are truer than if they had really happened and after you are finished reading one you will feel that all that happened to you and afterwards it all belongs to you: the good and the bad, the ecstasy, the remorse and sorrow, the people and the places and how the weather was. If you can get so that you can give that to people, then you are a writer.”

Ernest Hemingway was talking about writing but I find the idea to be equally true of photography (or any form of art or craft).  There are artists who seem to appear, sui generis, from nowhere, without precedent or antecedent though in the end this is a false narrative.  There are, indeed, great and original talents, but everyone is influenced by something.

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WELCOME TO 2019

In 2018 Field Photographer blew up. We grew quickly and massively much faster than any of us had anticipated, and that’s all due to you, our loyal reader. And this growth has brought us to 2019, a year where you’ll see a lot of changes. Bigger projects, more reviews, more content than ever before and because you demanded it, a podcast.

We have big goals for 2019 and we want to thank all of you for supporting FP and being a part of what we’re doing here. We hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas and Hanukah season, we’re excited about our further adventures with you as we go into our third year of publishing. Happy New Year! FP

THE LAND OF THE THUNDER DRAGON

By Chris Urban

The Tiger’s Nest Monastery, Chris Urban ©

Travel in the 21stcentury doesn’t often feel much like exploring anymore.   Just when you think you’ve had a real Indiana Jones type of experience hiking a wadi in central Oman, you run headfirst right into a Starbucks.  A few years ago, my wife and I were living in and had explored much of India.  We had just been to Everest Base Camp, had seen a lot of other parts of Asia, and were looking for new adventures.  It was around that time that we heard of Bhutan, “the Land of the Thunder Dragon.”  Everything about it called to us as travelers and explorers.  

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FIRST IMPRESSIONS OF THE NIKON Z7 & 24-70mm ƒ4 LENS

Monday: I stopped by World of photography and saw for the first time in person, the Nikon Z7.

Tuesday: I walked in with a D5 and walked out with the Z7 system.

I’m standing here holding the new Nikon Z7, and it feels great! A camera that I had no plans to own. I wasn’t expecting even to be able to see the camera till after Christmas. It’s widely sold out, with a waiting list at most major retailers. But here I am at my friend Gary’s shop, using it for the first time. It feels wonderful, just like a mini Nikon DSLR, the EVF is big and bright, sharp as a tack and the color is outstanding. I found myself coming back the next day and walking out with a Z7. The D5 is an incredible camera, but it’s big bulky and ill-suited for 98% of the work I do. The Z7 is small, light, fast and frankly almost as good as the D5. I’m not going to bury the lead here; the Nikon Z7 is very possibly the best mirrorless camera I have ever used.

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HOW TO BE A BETTER PHOTOG: SHOOT SOME FILM

The Civil War photographer Mathew Brady had to travel with a mobile darkroom in a wagon.  The wet plate process with which he worked produced amazing negatives and an irreplaceable record of that bloody conflict.  But the process was so slow, so fragile, and the cameras so large, that actual combat pictures were impossible. It is fascinating to read about the lengths that early wildlife, documentary, and expedition photographers Martin and Osa Johnson went to in order to bring back never-before-seen images and films from the South Seas, Africa, Borneo, and elsewhere.  That Frank Hurley’s sublime images of Ernest Shackleton’s ill-fated 1915 Antarctic expedition were even made, let alone survived, is nearly unbelievable. John Noel ‘s footage and photographs from the 1924 Everest attempt where Mallory and Irving lost their lives took a nearly inhuman effort to shoot and then develop in a high-altitude field darkroom. Taking photos with early cameras in what are still the most unforgiving, deadly, and difficult mountains, jungles, and ice fields of the world is scarcely believable.  But the images exist to prove it was done and the more you learn about these feats of bravery, endurance, technical skill, and artistic genius the more you realize that as photographers and explorers we truly rest on the shoulders of giants.

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HOW TO BE A BETTER PHOTOG: SHOOT A PHOTO ESSAY

All Photos taken with a Leica M6ttl and a Leica 50mm f/2 Summicron on Kodak 400CN film.  All Photos from the photo essay, “The Faces of Transcarpathia.” By Andrew J. Tonn ©

MONTERREY — Most photographers have favorite subjects and preferred themes.  Some are obvious and others less so. One person shoots flowers and selfies. Another also photographs flowers and themselves but, as with any art, the subject is not always just the subject.  Robert Mapplethorpe’s beautiful black and white studies of calla lilies and tulips are far from ordinary photos of pretty flowers and Graciela Iturbide’s self-portraits are far more than another reflexive selfie.

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