240 miles, one tank of fuel and a grand day out. Yep today I took the Grand Cherokee to Birmingham for the Focus on imaging show at the NEC. A great opportunity to touch base with a few colleagues from the http://www.f8andbethere.com forum and the British Press Photographers Association. I travelled up with Neil Ford (a chap who helps administrate the F8andbethere.com forum, and all round techy chap, that is useful to know if you have Windoze or OSX problems ((contact Nubenu IT Services))
.A disappointment that Canon were not there, but there was still be a bit to see, last year was a disappointment as the crowds were huge and to get to see anything was a problem, so I came away without spending a bean. This year I was planning on looking at a couple of items and maybe spending some cash.
It wasn’t as busy as I recall it being last year, but still busy enough. I was hunting down a couple of odds and sods, but didn’t find what I was looking for, so I spent practically nothing, well not really nothing the NEC is as usual rip-off city when two pints of warm beer and a couple of rolls come to a tenner, £60 on fuel, seven for parking, however I must have walked miles and miles, well hundreds of yards anyway.
First up was the Manfrotto and LowePro stands, I was after a pouch for the PDA, one for the Phone, one for the iPod and one for the P&S compact. I was amazed at the number of people that bring their jewellery to the show, there were LowePro backpacks everywhere. Yet bizarrely, I didn’t see a single person taking a photograph. You have to ask yourself what is the point. Unless off course they were empty and planning on collecting a lot of brochures!!
Anyway the Lowe Pro stand weren’t selling anything, so a visit to the Tamrac stand, and they weren’t selling anything either. D’Oh!
So a visit to the BPPA (British Press Photographers Association) stand (of which I am a member) and a quick chat with Mr T (Edmond Terakopian) who had a number of iconic images of the London Bombings, and has subsequently gone on to win a couple of very prestigious awards and honourable mentions in dispatches. Congrats Ed, it couldn’t happen to a nicer fellow.
It was bizarre that some retard walked past the BPPA stand and said loud enough to be heard, “those images have had a of photoshopping.” Hey twat, we’re press photographers, we don’t do photoshopping. I find it difficult to believe some people, just because he probably can’t produce a razor sharp colourful image straight out of the camera in ideal situations, and many press togs can under less than ideal circumstances. Jealousy is a horrible thing.
A quick trip to the Jacobs stand, they are selling EOS1D MkII n bodies for £1800 (which seem pretty good value to me) and 2GB Sandisk CF for £80 again good value, but seeing as I have 1D mkII n bodies and dozens of Sandisk CF Cards, I wasn’t tempted, This evening got home to find an email from Sandisk announcing their new SD-USB cards which [b]DO[/b] look interesting.
Then whilst at the Jacobs stand, one of the more embarrassing moments as I was approached, by someone I have never met, “Hi ” I was a little taken back to say the least, it turns out to be a young fellow that reads the website and blog, I didn’t catch his name, but it’s always a pleasure (if a bit of a shock) to meet some interested in the drivel that I write. I expect it when I am at Thruxton, it happens every year, that I am approached by someone who has read this drivel, I didn’t expect it in a crowd of 10,000 people, but hey, that’ll teach me for having my picture on the web. Talking of having my picture on the web, some of the b*astards on F8andbethere.com decided it would be good fun to mock up some film posters of me (after I was photographed by another tog at Elton Johns wedding) I will post one or two here, assuming the creators don’t mind.
Anyway, a flying visit to the bar, for the equivalent of gastronomical mugging and then to the Sigma stand to meet Ray Fitchett. Who seemed to be enjoying himself. I have agreed to have a look at the new 70-200mm F2.8 EX DG when it becomes available; I am also still waiting to finish the review on the 500mm F4.5, of which initial impressions are favourable. There is also apparently a new 300-800mm which has some new features, and hopefully will correct some of the minor Chromatic Aberration that is present in the current piece of glass.
Anyway only two people persuaded me to part with any money, one was Jacobs and the other I can’t remember, but I did get two out of the four Lowe-Pro pouches that I was after. A quick phone call has ensured that another one will be with me in a few days. Still nothing for the iPod though.
Anyway a pleasant enough day and a quick run home down the M40, seldom doing less than 95mph meant that the rush hour traffic was missed, and a bit of a doze was fitted in, before adjourning to the pub.
That’s all for now.
Adio, wli nanawalmezi