Posts tagged PMA 2009
Where's Wally?

By the volume of emails containing "hey tomorrow, can you.....", I can tell that many people do not know that I am currently in Las Vegas attending the PMA09 (Photo Marketing Association's annual international conference). I have attended PMA sporadically since I was 18, and I have found it is always a great "barometer" of our industry. keynote-youthandphotographyjpg This photo will give you a rough idea of the numbers of people that attend this show, it is in the 10,000 plus category.

In this session, Dr Glenn Omura is backing up his wide ranging research on how the youth of tomorrow values and uses photography by running a blind, live survey of 8 high school students. The out come....Photography is a highly valued and core activity, and that women typically place higher importance on it than men.

Dr Glenn has been market researching for our industry for many years, in past years he identified and defined Jennifer as the target market for our industry.

If you add to these findings the ever increasing numbers of photos being taken, you can deduce that the industry is heading for better times.

Another piece of interesting News from PMA is the release of Nikon's Capture NX2. I have never supported using manufacturers' software for handling their files because in the past the interfaces have been clumsy and slow. My mantra has been 'let the camera makers make cameras and the software makers make software'. But now this new offering from Nikon makes you sit up. I think it may threaten Lightroom/Capture One/ACR/etc if they open it up to other raw formats aside from Nikon's .NEF, and they may.

The reason behind my opinion is that Capture NX2 gives you very elegant and very very fast Photoshop-level controls for RAW files. Think about this; deep masking, retouching, adjusting all saved in meta data. All reversable, all at lightning pace and batchable. Probably it's most interesting feature is Nikon's elegant re-thinking of how you go about making adjustments, Nikon offeres "control points" as the tool.

I must head back off to an 8am session on book binding, then to a Keynote on "Thinking through disruptive technologies", then off to the trade show floor to interrogate the 100's of interesting exhibitors. Cheers, Paul Atkins.

More from PMA'09

craignewmark PMA'09 show has gone well, I'm loving it! Thursday morning we heard Craig Newmark of Craigslist. Craig did not speak about how business acumen has driven his 180 million pageviews per month, but how instead a social conscience and sense of community has lifted Craigslist to where it is. Some of the things Craig is proud of is the use of his site during hurricane Katrina as a message board for victims trying to reunite.

Craigslist has also played no small part in the election of Barak Obama.

The main thrust of Craig's message was the importance of connecting with your clients and your community, while balancing this with forthright, dedicated business practise.

Nik software had a great show special for their entire suite. The software has a well designed interface and a powerful engine to keep it snappy. If you love B&W imagery, check out their Silver Efex pro module. Nik are behind tthe Nikon NX2 software, and at the heart is Viveza, here is a quote from Nik: "Viveza, powered by U Point® technology for direct on-image editing, is the most powerful and precise tool available to control light and color in photographic images. For the first time, corrections and enhancements to brightness, contrast or color can easily be made in a fraction of the time needed by other tools without the need to create complicated selections or layer masks."

For those of you still printing silver halide B&W GenAmerica United Corp offered papers and chemistry. It looked like Ilford to me.

Leica had an understated booth bejewelled with a breathtaking range of my favorite cameras, but the outstanding jewel is the Leica S2 a 37.5 megapixel DSLR, it uses a 30x45mm medium format imaging sensor. I can't comment on it's performance, but no doubt it will be a serious proposition for fans of the brand and perhaps it will grab the attention of some Nikon and Canon users who will have the spare $US25k.

Busy trade show

Joby displayed their range of funky Gorilla Pod tripods. Kate got chatting with Dean Gershenson their director of sales (about Oprah) and was presented with a tripod for her Holga. We were a bit dismayed to see 3 near identical copies of the revolutionary Joby design. It seems as though half the trade show had great ideas and the other half had copies.

The overwelming benefit of attending an international trade show is the people you meet. Here is a run down of the nationalities I had the opportunity to spend time with: Nigerian lab owner, Italian publisher, german camera chain owner, Peruvian professional photographer, Canadian camera sales person, Canadian lab owners, Russian importer/exporter, and Americans, lots if them. From millionaire investors to a female gridiron Photographer, and everything in between.

Tomorrow, before hopping into our Qantas flight, We will visit a lab in LA, A&I.

See you all soon, Paul.