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Author Topic: Has LuLa passed its prime?  (Read 3380 times)

dreed

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Has LuLa passed its prime?
« on: September 23, 2017, 10:19:39 AM »

I find myself looking at LuLa less and less these days for reasons I can't put my finger on. Maybe it's because in the past when Phase One introduced a new camera like the IQ3 100MP, the best place to read about it would be here. Now, nothing. But nor was there a story on the Nikon D850 (which is proving to be a sellout success). Sure there has been more of a focus on mirrorless things but to ignore the rest of the industry? Has LuLa become a Sony site? Never before can I recall other vendors being so ignored.

And whilst there are review sites everywhere, writing "hands on" and so forth that potentially make such stories "less unique/important", they're about gear and like it or not, everyone loves to talk about gear.

But it's more than just that. A 3 part essay into triptychs? Someone is conjuring up some Peter Jackson who turned The Hobbit into three movies, totaling 9 hours. A normal novel is required to fit into 2. As is often said about photos, less can be more. But it's not just that either.

Maybe it's the photos in the stories and there's editorial absent.

Or I don't know.

Does anyone else feel the same?
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degrub

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Re: Has LuLa passed its prime?
« Reply #1 on: September 23, 2017, 10:34:59 AM »

Cameras and photography have shifted towards incremental development since the heyday of conversion to digital when we all were on a steep learning curve. The site had a lot of focus and interest in that transition. Now that knowledge and understanding has spread far and wide.

i agree with your sentiment though.
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hokuahi

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Re: Has LuLa passed its prime?
« Reply #2 on: September 23, 2017, 10:44:19 AM »

+1
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jmlphotography

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Re: Has LuLa passed its prime?
« Reply #3 on: September 23, 2017, 11:36:29 AM »

After reading the recent article on the Sony A9, I was thinking the same thing.
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luxborealis

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Re: Has LuLa passed its prime?
« Reply #4 on: September 23, 2017, 11:52:32 AM »

Perhaps we're entering the "seen it all before" era. A few years ago, Lu-Lu "covered" all the exciting giant leaps forward in digital cameras and printing; Iceland and Antarctica were "fresh" and Michael brought a zeal and vigour to his articles and reviews.

The industry has changed and so has Lu-La. Many of the same old faces are still here, for better and worse, but it's still the best place on the web for discussions of the minutiae of digital photography equipment, practice, technique and vision.

So after we have discussed and debated all the obvious, low-hanging fruit, we get around to triptychs. As a result, Lu-La is not for everyone and it doesn't sensationalize all the latest-greatists. Besides, it seems only Sony and, perhaps Fuji and Hasselblad, are the only ones really innovating. We all look at other sites and I think the powers that be recognize it. It may just be there is reduced readership, with Lu-La specializing in what it knows/does best which, I believe, is better than catering to the masses. But that's a business decision that Kevin can best speak to.
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Kevin Raber

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Re: Has LuLa passed its prime?
« Reply #5 on: September 23, 2017, 12:13:41 PM »

A lot of things are changing.  First, I appreciate the feedback and thoughts.  We have never been a Press Release site.  There are way too many sites that put out the latest news.  We are doing a lot to bring new and different information to the site that can't be found elsewhere.  Regarding Phase One, I am in Germany now and will be in Copenhagen for a four-day visit with Phase One starting the 29th.  We'll be doing videos interviews and be shooting with the Phase One then and hearing from all the right people about the new cameras and innovations.  So rather than just put the news out there which was available on the forum, we decided we would go there to see the products and bring you back more in-depth coverage.

This week we are in Wexlar, Germany visiting Leica all week.  This will be an intensive behind the scenes look at Leica.  Chris is with me and our schedule is full and we believe we will have a story that will be of great interest.  We will soon release our next shooting with the masters video as well.  All of this and more that we are workin on is different than can be found anywhere else.

Not all articles we publish or any site for that matter will be for everyone.  While some may say a three-part story on triptychs is too much, others have written and said they got them doing things differently.  We do try to provide a variety of articles not found elsewhere that are a value.  We have some very cool hardware items to share soon as well as some interesting software products.  These will things not covered elsewhere. 

I will admit that we are pretty focused on mirrorless products.  Michael and I felt that was the future going back a few years and still do.  Yes, the new Nikon is nice.  Nikon and Canon don't have us on their press list though for whatever reason.  I have ordered a Nikon 850 though so we can put it to the test.  We will try to re-open the door to these comapnies.  We also try to look at companies that are invovating in the field of photography. 

Moving forward we will soon have a much larger YouTube presence.  This is an important segment today and we will be doing some interesting new content there.  In 2018 we have slowed down the number of workshops we do so we can implement some new things on our site, as well as push more interesting content.  I am always open to ideas and invite you to share these by contacting me directly by email or PM. I am committed to making this website a value for our readers and members.  Many of the projects we are working on require large commitments of time and resources and there are only a few of us at LuLa. 

I also want to thank our many article contributors.  There are many people other than the LuLa team that work hard to provide content freely to share with you our readers.  Also, we are always open to new content from those interested in contributing. 

We publish new content every 2-3 days.  We work hard on this site as well as the Endowment.  LuLa is my passion as well as photography.  It's what drives me.  I am committed to you and our readers to provide interesting and different content on the subject of photography. 

I want to also say thank you to Chris Sanderson who has been a great part of this site since its beginning.  He a great voice of guidance and reason.   And, to my wife and partner Debra who handles customer service, article layout, workshop details, scheduling and pretty much keeps the endowment going. 

Thank you too, for being part of the LuLa family. 



« Last Edit: September 23, 2017, 12:23:10 PM by Kevin Raber »
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kikashi

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Re: Has LuLa passed its prime?
« Reply #6 on: September 23, 2017, 12:52:01 PM »

... A 3 part essay into triptychs? ...

Isn't that rather appropriate?

Jeremy
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farbschlurf

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Re: Has LuLa passed its prime?
« Reply #7 on: September 23, 2017, 12:58:06 PM »

Hope you have a good time in Germany.
BTW it's Wetzlar, not Wexlar.
Looking forward to the new articles.
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Dave (Isle of Skye)

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Re: Has LuLa passed its prime?
« Reply #8 on: September 23, 2017, 01:54:08 PM »

Well I imagine you (Chris and Kevin) already know my thoughts on Lula and how it used to be the home of the excellent and much missed video journal, which showcased photographers (Michael and friends) out photographing in the field, followed by a section of them discussing and comparing their images, ideas and thoughts, along with interviews and technique/gear discussion etc, followed by a slide show and which IMHO was the unique thing that once lifted this site above all others - for me at least.

But now the main thrust of Lula seems to be leaning more towards promoting rather expensive workshops, but hey I know you guys have to make a living and so there is nothing wrong with that, but that only serves and satisfies the few, whereas the LLVJs along with the discussion forum, used to serve and satisfy everyone else.

Dave
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Rob C

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Re: Has LuLa passed its prime?
« Reply #9 on: September 23, 2017, 02:37:53 PM »

It's true that the magic it once had may have slipped... It could also be that one has simply become used to it. I suppose that being married to the young Christy Turlington would blow your mind for a year or two and then you just take it all for granted. So with web sites and anything else.

Also, not only might the technical scene have plateaued -  have no idea, being not in the least a gearhead - but doubtless to say, the last time I sat transfixed in my chair was when Michael was in Germany discussing the new M9 that was sitting on a table in front of a Leica head honcho. I was unable to look away, much as I might once have been with Christy Turlington; I could only gaze, dream and lust after it and the magic we might, in both cases, have been able to do together. However, I'd have picked up a Nikon for Christy.

But these über toys are not for me - my needs are too prosaic.

Perhaps we have also managed to turn off some very good pros - either by daft comments or even through lack of viewer interest. For me, their pictures were the visual kick this site gave me. I don't care a fig for mountains, rocks, trees, rivers and bears catching flying salmon in their mouth; don't they know we're running out of wild salmon already?

;-(

Rob

Jeff

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Re: Has LuLa passed its prime?
« Reply #10 on: September 23, 2017, 02:45:51 PM »

And no mention of a visit to Adobe.

I liked the video chats with Michael, Jeff  & Eric.

Maybe there will be an interview with Adobe soon as there are  increasing rumours of a Lightroom 7
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amolitor

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Re: Has LuLa passed its prime?
« Reply #11 on: September 23, 2017, 03:01:54 PM »

LuLa has without question evolved and with that comes, inevitably, some change in the audience.

Obviously as an occasional contributor, I am wildly biased, but I like the more recent content more. I think the team is doing a good job pivoting
to topics of contemporary interest. Frankly, the digital camera is a solved problem. The difference between a good m3/4 system and the latest
Phase One uberkamera is so slight as to be of genuine interest to a select few.

I think it is fair to say that virtually 100% of that select few frequents LuLa, mind you, so, still relevant.

Still, as the technology sorts itself out in the new plateau, I think turning to artistic considerations and other topics is a wise choice (but then, the technology
has been of slight interest to me for decades). We still see things like detailed (oh so very detailed)  reviews of paper and printers. While these leave me cold,
I  recognize that this is still an area of real concern and interest to the serious Fine Art Photographer. While cameras are basically all so good as to not matter much
any more, while digital technologies have matured to the point that virtually any desired image can be created, the last technological frontier remains as the output
medium.

For me, it is the book, and I care more about structure than color rendering, but for many readers of LuLu the details of color gamut and Dmax are paramount, and
so  LuLa provides those detailed technical reviews.

I find myself liking LuLa more and more, rather than less and less.

But then,  I would, I write here from time to time, so, cum grano salis.
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Telecaster

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Re: Has LuLa passed its prime?
« Reply #12 on: September 23, 2017, 03:04:02 PM »

When I first started reading LuLa Michael was using Nikons (if I remember right) and just getting into Pentax medium format. Things were pretty sedate. Which transparency films scanned best? Which scanners performed best with trannie film? How to best use ND grads? How does this new (or just-discovered old) lens perform? How many ink cartridges does the latest Epson or Canon printer have? That kinda stuff.

Then the Canon D30 came out and all the deck chairs got rearranged. That rearrangement is the same one we still have now, some 17 years later. Things are pretty sedate again.

So it goes…

-Dave-
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Dave (Isle of Skye)

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Re: Has LuLa passed its prime?
« Reply #13 on: September 23, 2017, 04:28:38 PM »

This is the type of thing (see links below) that Lula used to do, albeit in its own unique way, so even though this is a thinly disguised advert for the Lee filters system, it is still none the less a really good discussion by respected photographers about photography and what makes them tick and drives them on to creating something meaningful.

Equipment has become irrelevant, as it is all good enough these days whatever system you shoot and for whatever style your prefer, so it now needs to be more about the creative process IMHO, which I think is what Andrew is also alluding to.

Photographers Discussing Photography

Photographers Discussing Photography - 2

There are a couple of hours of very interesting photography related discussion in the videos above BTW, so select HD and full screen, then sit back and enjoy!

Dave
« Last Edit: September 24, 2017, 06:11:38 AM by Dave (Isle of Skye) »
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Alan Goldhammer

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Re: Has LuLa passed its prime?
« Reply #14 on: September 23, 2017, 04:59:00 PM »

It's true that the magic it once had may have slipped... It could also be that one has simply become used to it. I suppose that being married to the young Christy Turlington would blow your mind for a year or two and then you just take it all for granted. So with web sites and anything else.
Already been there and I can tell you that dating super models is truly over rated. ;D
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dreed

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Re: Has LuLa passed its prime?
« Reply #15 on: September 23, 2017, 08:50:23 PM »

We are doing a lot to bring new and different information to the site that can't be found elsewhere.  Regarding Phase One, I am in Germany now and will be in Copenhagen for a four-day visit with Phase One starting the 29th.  We'll be doing videos interviews and be shooting with the Phase One then and hearing from all the right people about the new cameras and innovations.

One suggestion is to think of LuLa as your personal blog with contributors from time to time. Tell people where you're going, when, who you'll be meeting and talk about it after. It may seem like needless verbosity but it also makes a difference to "just stories" or "just reviews." Actually, I think I've mentioned this before. Putting your hat on my head (so to speak), I might feel too busy or why do I need to tell people about every little thing. It makes a difference, the difference between it having life and being a cold machine. The difference between it being personal and a part of your life in photography vs just a website. There was more than one occasion that I can recall "off on a trip to X and new camera Y arrived, tell you more when I get back." There's some excitement value from that kind of story (although it is a non-event) as it prepares the reader for the next installment. Maybe there was much more nuance it what was done than I realise!
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David Eckels

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Re: Has LuLa passed its prime?
« Reply #16 on: September 23, 2017, 09:00:24 PM »

Still, as the technology sorts itself out in the new plateau, I think turning to artistic considerations and other topics is a wise choice.

For me, it is the book, and I care more about structure than color rendering, but for many readers of LuLu the details of color gamut and Dmax are paramount, and
so  LuLa provides those detailed technical reviews.

I find myself liking LuLa more and more, rather than less and less.

But then,  I would, I write here from time to time, so, cum grano salis.
Well said. Or is that +1, or "like"? ;)

zomg

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Re: Has LuLa passed its prime?
« Reply #17 on: September 24, 2017, 01:34:43 PM »

Video Journal was the best thing about LULA for me. Photographers traveling around the world, discussing what they shoot, how and why etc. That was unique and I still haven't seen anything like that from any other website. After they stopped producing those videos, this site became pretty much just like everything else on the web.
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Eric Myrvaagnes

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Re: Has LuLa passed its prime?
« Reply #18 on: September 24, 2017, 03:44:11 PM »

I agree that the industry has matured and new pieces of equipment are less exciting than they were a few years ago. But I still find LuLa and the Forum to be an excellent resource.
Almost everything I know about digital photography I learned from regulars on LuLa, including Michel, Chris, Kevin, Jeff Schewe, Andrew Rodney, and Eric Chan. I have not found any other website or forum that is as generous and informative as LuLa. I, too, miss those early videos, but there is lots of good, thoughtful material right now that no other website can match.

Thank you all who have made this possible!

Eric
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Sharon VL

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Re: Has LuLa passed its prime?
« Reply #19 on: September 24, 2017, 04:25:06 PM »

Lula has always been my main source for printing info. I owe Michael and Jeff  for their wonderful camera to print videos.

The art info here- not so much. There are other sources that are more relevant for that conversation.



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