WPO @ Photo Plus
- By Kaley @ WPO
- 0 comments
If I were a professional photographer, this past weekend would have been better than Christmas. As a photography lover and WPO's new Communications and Online Administrator, it was a fabulous welcome to the world of all things photography related.
The Photo Plus Expo welcomed over 24,000 professionals and enthusiasts to New York City's Jacob Javits Center for four days of product exhibitions, seminars, portfolio reviews, networking and more. The centre buzzed with life, nonstop flashes and anything one might ever need related to the art of photography. Each of the major booths hosted multiple seminars for guests, with topics ranging from simple ‘how to’ tutorials,, to more in depth demonstrations on incorporating techniques in order to improve photographers' businesses. For professionals, extended seminars and workshops were available to further hone photographic skills and maximise the use of both old and new tools. Seminars on social media + marketing, post production, as well as tips + trends dominated the seminar rooms, where no genre was neglected. Wedding photography, photojournalism, fashion photography, nature, advertising, working with cause-oriented agencies: all were accounted for.
The highlight for many - or at least for myself - was the plethora of new products offered to make life just a little bit easier.
One particular standout was my run-in with World Photographic Academy Member Daniel Beltra. A environmental documentary photographer, Beltra was awarded the Prince's Rainforest Project (PRP) in 2008 by the Sony World Photography Awards’ first ever Focus Award. Now, Beltra is working with Think Tank Photo on backpacks designed specifically for photographing outdoors, and has just co-launched a new company. Beltra explained most bags are made for photojournalists or sport photographers, but not for what shooting outdoors or in nature, Beltra’s specialty. Think Tank informed him that they were looking to design a new brand and asked if Beltra wanted to be a part of it. Now the company, along with Beltra, is prototyping a backpack fit for outdoor photography enthusiasts, with a rotating bottom that allows for easy access to equipment without needing to stop and take off the bag. "It's incredible," Beltra says, who is preparing for the backpack’s release in early 2013.
Other notables included the extensive assortment of new printing methods. Print to wood with WoodSnap, or print to personally crafted boxes, letters and accordion books with MpixPro. Photo Plus displayed them all. And now with the ease of uploading online, most products can be printed and shipped to you the day after upload. And if you're an environmentally conscious buyer, WoodSnap plants a tree for each print sold.
If you love following the future of iPhone photography, you may also wish to consider checking out some of the latest apps that go beyond Instagram. Tether Tools announced its new app for smart phones and tablets that will allow for wireless transfer from DSLRs to mobile devices for instant editing. Canon announced a similar programme that will be available with their new 6D.
And last but not least, the Sony booth had something for everyone to enjoy, incorporating the full Sony Experience through their many products and providing a virtual toy store for avid photographers and amateurs alike. One particular draw for me was something called PlayMemories, which was recently unveiled. A new camera app, PlayMemories graces the rear screen of the NEX-5R and also the NEX6 – a WiFi enabled shooter, which just arrived on the scene. When paired with PlayMemories Online, Mobile or Studio, you can view and transfer captured photos and videos on compatible TVs, smartphones, tablets and PS3 consoles and even take a photo from your camera, using your phone located a fair distance away from the camera itself. I have a feeling that this is something that outdoor enthusiasts such as Daniel Beltra may like to check out!
The common theme for Photo Plus? Fun. Participants could join a "shoot out" so you never miss a shot, enjoy Open Air Photobooth test shots, or enter contests for product give-a-ways.
Obviously the most popular exhibits were those with camera testing. Both well-established and prototype cameras, lenses, lighting and tripods never received a break from excited attendees looking for a sneak peak at what to expect in the coming months. One particular crowd favourite is the launch of Fujifilm's new instant camera, Instax Mini. For all those who mourn the loss of instant photography, look no further. This little point-and-shoot prints high-quality images instantly.
The world of photography continues to evolve and push boundaries. Now with the rise in accessibility, photographers are innovating to separate the professional art form from the new wave of Instagram and mobile photographic pursuits. The Photo Plus Expo touched on these issues and more, pushing boundaries and garnering a monsoon of enthusiasm in its path.
Did you attend Photo Plus Expo 2012? Tell us what your favourite products or exhibitors were!