Luminar 4

screen grab of Luminar 4
screen grab of Luminar 4

If you are like myself and many other creatives who use and rely on software to get the job done. You may well be sick of Adobe’s new licensing model? I have always been a proponent of alternatives to the mainstream and prior to 2002, there were several much better software programs out there that left Photoshop in the dirt. Fast forward now to the next century and somehow Adobe has become the Microsoft of the creative industries.

screengrab of Lumnar 4
the editing panel of Luminar 4

Have no fear there ARE alternatives. One such player is Skylum software’s Luminar 4. I have been paying for this software for a couple of years now and when version 4 arrived with DAM built-in I was ecstatic. Luminar 4 has several features that beat the pants off Lightroom. These features are great if you are a novice digital photographer and want to get up to speed using software to enhance your raw files. At about $90.00 AU it’s a steal for the current version. [If you click through on this link it helps me with discounts moving forward].

screen grab of Luminar 4
the processing screen show the before and after preview

Before writing this article I did some digging to find some comparisons between Adobe Lightroom and Luminar and found this excellent article, by, Usnea Lebendig on shotkit.com. Here’s an in-depth article on Luminar itself; also on shotkit.com.

I won’t repeat what has been written other than to say the fact that I do not need to import images into the software to work means a lot. I expect version 5 of Luminar to knock Lightroom off its perch. Currently I use the two packages side by side, and given my approach to software generally, I should give the AI features in Luminar more of a go.

screen grab of Luminar 4
The info tab of the interface

Other features that both Lightroom and Luminar have that are useful are the option to review/preview edits. Luminar’s online help looks more succinct and direct than Adobe’s I feel too.

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Walking in the fog

A fog shrouded bike path with signs indicating flooding
A fog shrouded bike path with signs indicating flooding, I walked here on Friday to exploit the uncommon weather.

As part of my ongoing pc3020 project, I left the house early enough to spend some quality time along my favourite walking path. I walked for nearly 2 hours along the Kororoit creek path. The sights and sounds were eerie. I passed several walkers a  jogger and a bicyclist. I even managed to notice some new features of land abutting the track. This I found surprising as I have walked here regularly since moving to Sunshine in 2000.

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North Melbourne, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia. 2020-07-05 13:30:42

Melbourne is undergoing several major infrastructure projects right now. The West Gate Tunnel,  The Metro Tunnel, and the Melbourne Airport Rail Link to name just three.  All of them impact on the roads and environment I use and photograph regularly. This crossing on Dynon road has been added for cyclists to use to cross the road. The bike path and associated underground tunnel has been closed while construction work is underway.

I spent a pleasant Sunday afternoon walking from Arden street to Dynon road and back following Moonee Ponds Creek. I shot about 1 and a half rolls of 120 film and about 50 or so digital pictures. The light was very good as it often is this time of year. The light was the  main impetus for me going out to begin with. Having driven past a few times I had noticed some changes. In particular the 2 new bridges built for pedestrians and cyclists. I wanted to capture the state of things as they are. They will I’m sure revert to some form of their original state once the projects are completed.

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Footscray Competition Outtake

I am considering entering the annual Picturing Footscray competition this year. This is an outtake. I’m still consider the brief which is, “to capture the essence of this great location during this tumultuous time, with the added challenge of respecting physical distancing and self-isolation requirements.  ”

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TBT [2019-06-13]

3 empty shuttle bus seats LAX
Three empty shuttle bus seats on the way LAX, our second day of travel home to Melbourne in 2019

Throwback Thursday, this time 12 months ago we were returning from a trip to NYC, via Los Angeles. At this point we had been in transit for 24 hours.

We had already lost a day by being forced to stay overnight in Los Angeles. A delayed flight was blamed.

Surprisingly we weren’t able to choose our seats at the ticket counter. Yet the aircraft had a large number of empty seats when we finally boarded.

At least we got two aisle seats which makes getting up and down on long haul flights a tad more comfortable. By the time we hit the tarmac in Melbourne we had been in transit for 3 days!

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New Projects?

Bulla, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia. 2020-05-22 14:42:30

I have been thinking a lot of late about Melbourne International Airport lately. I regularly visit there as my wife travels frequently for her job. I often collect her and occasionally drop her off. I also love flying and aeroplanes generally. The history of the creation and development of Melbourne International Airport, or Tullamarine, is well documented. I can add my own history of the place too.  I was a young boy when construction wound down. I used to ride my bicycle there and wander around and explore. There was a working model of the airport showing how the ATC operated with moving models, and commentary. Which I have fond memories of.

While I do not currently live in the same postcode as the airport I am very close and can easily get there in a matter of minutes if the light beckons. Sometime in 2019 I decided to start visiting the edges of the airport to try and make interesting pictures, or perhaps document the changes as they occurred. I started the idea using colour. I have shot about six rolls of 120.

A day or two ago I went in search of more pictures near the airport. I took several cameras. But made no pictures on colour film of the edges of the airport. Using a DSLR I managed to scope some good spots that might be worthy of a revisit. One of the ideas that are floating in my mind as I think about this place is the use of the land on the edges of the airport, where does the airpot begin and end, how is it defined.

The edges of the airport are predominantly industrial as the nearest suburb is Gladstone Park on the southern edge. Sunbury is on its north western edge and Avondale Heights on its Southern edge. The industrial land close to the airport is mostly distribution centres with some training and maintenance facilities. These are ordinary concrete structures reminiscent of Lewis Baltz’s workThe New Industrial Parks near Irvine California’. I am hoping to avoid making picture of these. I’m more interested in how the land is used in an area that has largely been frozen in terms of development since the airport was constructed in the late 1960s.

The airport has its own postcode. Which makes preplanning visits easy. As I grew up in the area I have a knowledge of the environment that few would recognise. As a cab driver in my mid 20s. I learned all about accessing the airport from every direction too. I am using all this knowledge to visit and revisit areas in and around the publicly accessible areas of the airport. My current process is just wander/drive and see what turns up.

The image above, hosted on flickr is an example of that research.

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