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Compiled by Tere Hendricks and Jim Erhardt
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Video Journal

The Luminous Landscape, a web site developed and maintained by Canadian photographer Michael Reichmann, is supported primarily by subscriptions to its quarterly Luminous Landscape Video Journal. The Video Journal is billed as "the world's first and currently, only DVD-based video magazine for photographers."

So why invest $99.95 (USD) for an annual subscription to the Video Journal? If you're looking for a professionally produced DVD packed with hands-on reviews of the latest equipment, information on some of the finest locations in North America, tutorials on digital imaging and more - all commercial and advertising free-then the Luminous Landscape Video Journal is for you!

The most recent issue (#4) was released in April and is over ninety minutes in length. It has three Southwestern United States travel segments--Antelope Canyon, Canyon de Chelly, and White Sands. It also has segments on super telephoto techniques and the first part of a two-part, "Digital Primer," focusing on Photoshop. The most unexpected and yet fascinating piece in this issue is a 29-minute segment on street photography.

Previous issues of the Video Journal have reviews of the Canon EOS D30, 1D, 400mm f/4 DO IS lens, and the 70-200 f/2.8L IS lens. You'll find travel segments on Death Valley, the Grand Canyon, Mono Lake, the ancient Bristlecone Pine Forest, and a favorite of NPN avian photographers, Bosque del Apache.

The Internet is not free. The Luminous Landscape, like NPN, is a tremendous resource. Support them and they'll be around for a long time to come. A subscription to the Video Journal can be purchased here.

Tere - NPN 096


Let there be light. And if you're a photographer working in low light conditions, let there be hands free light. Say hello to the Petzl Zipka.

Made by the French company Petzl, the Zipka is an ultralight LED (Light Emitting Diode) lamp. It weighs in at 64 g (2.2 oz.) and that includes 3 AAA batteries. The Zipka can be worn on your head, your wrist, your hand or even your ankle. You can also easily attach it to your tripod or camera strap.

The Zipka consists of a headlamp/battery compartment and a retractable reel that holds the elastic cord. Putting the Zipka on is a snap-if you're not careful! There is a lot of "zip" in the small elastic cord and so you will want to put it on slowly to avoid zapping yourself or getting your hair tangled in the cord or reel.

The LEDs give off an even white light with a range of 5 meters or more and they have a lifetime of "several years of continuous use." Like all lamps and bulbs, the trio of LEDs will dim as they age.

If you are concerned about night vision, red (and green) accessory lenses are available. But rather than changing lenses on the Zipka, I'd recommend the age old method of preserving your night vision-keep your dominant eye closed while you have the light on.

The price isn't ultralight at $44.95 (USD). But keep in mind, a Zipka will eliminate the bad taste in your mouth, drooling on your camera, chipped teeth, and the frozen lips you can get from holding a flashlight in your mouth. The Zipka comes with a 3 year guarantee and is available worldwide at local retailers.

Tere - NPN 096

Chill Out

I recently had the pleasure of checking out a DVD that features the nature photography of a well-known NPN member. Natural Splendors Volume 2 - Nature Scenes from the American South & East showcases the images of Mundy Hackett and instrumental music from Mediatone Music. Approximately 72 minutes in length, the DVD includes -

  • Widescreen anamorphic video, enhanced for 16:9 displays
  • Progressive scan video
  • Two playback aspect ratios supported - 16:9 and 4:3
  • Video and audio digitally mastered
  • Dolby Digital 5.1, DTS 6 Channel Surround and Dolby Digital Stereo Music
  • English subtitles
  • No region coding

The DVD is part of a 3-volume collection including Natural Splendors Volume 1 - Nature Scenes from the American West & Southwest, and Natural Splendors Volume 3 - Garden Scenes from Europe. Anxious to see Mundy's work on the "big screen," I popped the DVD into our DVD player and sat back to enjoy it on our 50-inch projection TV. The Natural Splendors DVDs are billed as "perfect for relaxation, meditation, and background ambiance" and Volume 2 certainly lives up to this claim. Mundy's images look superb on the big screen, and the instrumental music compliments them beautifully. Easy viewing and easy listening, this DVD is the perfect way to "chill out" after a log day.

The Natural Splendors DVDs are available from and at major local bookstore retailers. Mundy is offering NPN members special pricing of $13.99 for Volume 2 or $39.99 for the complete set (plus $3.50 shipping and handling). You can contact Mundy directly at to order yours.

Jim - NPN 001

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