Every two years more than 150,000 photo-imaging professionals and enthusiasts travel to the Photokina: World of Imaging show and conference in Cologne, Germany to preview some of the technology and ideas that will reshape how images will be captured, used, and shared in the coming years. For example, Photokina 2006 was of particular importance to LexJet because the show unveiled new options in wide-gamut, wide-format pigment ink printers that have enabled thousands of professional photographers to gain greater control over their prints and offer new products and services. (And, yes, some new pro-model printers are expected to be announced at Photokina 2010, which runs from Sept. 21-26.)
But now that the transition from film-based photo processing to the digital darkroom is almost complete, the primary emphasis at Photokina 2010 will be on examining “what’s next?” for photography in general and the photography business in particular.
Here are just a few of the topics that will be discussed by professional photographers in various forums.
Photography — Where Are We Headed?
On September 24 the Science and Technology section of the German Society for Photography (DGPh) will host a forum titled “Photography: Where Are We Headed?” The forum will focus on exposure technology and photofinishing. The first section of the forum will deal with the future of digital photography, the future development of camera technology, problems in sensor technology, and the TIFF/EP raw data standard. In the second section, a photo restorer will report on his experiences with modern materials. Other presentations will deal with the technology of fine art inkjet media, the revolutionary printing process called high-definition skia photography, and the printing processes used to make photo books.
Spectaris Technology Forums
On Sept. 21, 22, and 23, representatives of renowned research institutes and manufacturing companies will present technological trends in photography, including “New Dimensions of Image Recording and Projection,” “The Navigation of Tomorrow — Locating Images,” and “3D: Possibilities and Perspectives.” The presentations will be geared to everyone interested in photography. The researchers will try to explain the exciting implications and significance of these technologies in terms that are understandable to the lay public as well as the experts.
Creative Alliance for Professional Photographers
The Creative Alliance at Photokina consists of six major suppliers of products for professional photographers: Adobe, HP, Nik Software, Nikon, X-Rite, and Wacom. Each day, professional photographers who use these companies’ products will present tips that can help you streamline your workflow, create stunning prints, and market your work. During evening forums sponsored by the Creative Alliance, the photographers will lead provocative, interactive panel discussions on the following topics:
- The overall, lasting effects of digital imaging on modern photography.
- The impact of Photoshop and other image-manipulation programs on the type of skills required for professional photography.
- The trials and tribulations of the professional photographer in today’s tough economic climate with ever-increasing competition from price-slashing newcomers to the field.
- Why modern wedding photographers must develop a wider range of photographic skills than in the past (e.g., people, glamour, editorial, and the printed page).
Speakers for the Creative Alliance include: photographer and creative director Robin Preston; photographer and digital artist Calvin Hollywood; Adobe expert and influencer Rufus Deuchler; Magnum photographer Thomas Hoepker; fine-art photographer Vincent Versace; beauty and fashion photographer Ralph Man; and photographer Jürgen Müller.
Fine Art Printing
Fine art printing continues to be an area of great interest to Photokina visitors. Epson printers set up in a special showcase on Fine Art Printing will enable visitors to directly compare the differences among different types of high-quality fine-art papers. Visitors can find out how the papers feel to the touch, and decide which type of paper is optimal for different types of art projects.
Computer-generated imaging (CGI) is already having an impact on today’s advertising communications and it harbors great potential for additional business applications. In the CGI Solution Center, you can see outstanding examples of the types of images being created with CGI systems. Hardware suppliers, software developers, creative users, and training institutes will collaborate to present a sophisticated program that will make it possible to view current and future developments.
In a newly designed Underwater Imaging World, renowned underwater photographers will talk about the right technology, equipment, and diving spots for underwater photography. In a large diving tank, trade fair visitors will be able to test for themselves the products offered by the exhibitors.
The world’s largest matrix ring will be installed by the Digital Photography Working Group. Sized at 14 meters in diameter and almost 44 meters in circumference, the ring will be used to produce matrix movies— fascinating interactive Flash images that will enable a 360° view of the photographed objects on the Internet. Trade fair visitors can have matrix movie made about themselves free of charge, which shortly afterwards will be viewable on the Internet.
There will be a number of exhibitions by award-winning professional and amateur photographers. For example, last year an international jury selected 41 photographs from more than 7,100 entries to be part of the Hahnenmühle Anniversary Photo Collection. The collection, which include portraits, still lifes, landscapes, nature shots, and architectural studies, will be on display at Photokina.
Other exhibitions will display panoramic images or images shot with unusual techniques. For example, in the “Beyond the Evident” exhibition, Edgar E. Sacayón will show panoramic images of UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Guatemala that he captured using a large-format camera and an infrared-sensitive trilinear scanning system. Another exhibition will feature photographs taken by the winners of the IVRPA competition for panoramic photography. The competitors’ expertise will be on display in three categories: VR (virtual-reality) panoramas, printed panoramas, and gigapixel printed panoramas.
In “A Vision of Silence,” Ulrike Harbach show a series of images of the Mecklenburg Lake District she created using a walk-in camera obscura.
If you can’t attend the show personally, plan to follow some of the breaking news by visiting the Photokina Pressroom, joining the Photokina group on LinkedIn, following Photokina on Twitter, or checking the Photokina page on Facebook.