Adobe Lightroom 3 Now Available

I am on the road, so can’t verify by downloading (as I am on the iPhone) but it looks like Lightroom 3 is now available for download. Would love it if someone could download the trial and see if they have added in softproofing and leave me a comment.
Lightroom 3 Download

EDIT – I have just got back to the office and can now verify that unfortunately soft-proofing has not made it into Lightroom 3.0. This is very disappointing for me as it means continually having to round trip my photographs through Photoshop for soft-proofing before going back to Lightroom for Print. No doubt an Adobe conspiracy to get me to upgrade to CS5… Nevertheless there are some very welcome new features in Lightroom 3.0 and the upgrade is certainly worthwhile.

Adobe TV – Top 5 Favourite Things in Lightroom 3

Adobe has posted a new video showing Terry White’s top 5 favourite Lightroom 3 features. Note they don’t say Beta anywhere in the video – in fact, Terry quotes “Lightroom 3 is here! In this episode I’ll show you my Top 5 Favorite New Features. Lightroom 3 has lots of new features that I absolutely LOVE, however in this Episode I’ll show you my top 5 favourites.” Top 5 Favourite Lightroom 3 Features. The short video clip demonstrates new capabilities such as tethered capture, custom watermarks, flexible print package layouts, lens correction plus additional slide show features including video export and background soundtracks. Unfortunately there is still no mention of soft proofing, but you would have to believe that the 3.0 release is now very close with the release of this video.

Lightroom 3.0 Video

Edit (A couple of hours on) – Well it looks like someone at Adobe slipped up – the video has been removed. Luckily I grabbed the quote from Terry White off the site before they took it down. Adobe really is the ship that never stops leaking…

Edit 2 – You can actually still get to the video on google’s cache HERE as of 8:12pm EST.

Wildlife Portraits Project – Lioness

The more time I spend photographing wildlife the more I am enjoying it – what started out as a bit of an experiment to see what sort of wildlife photographs I could make as a precursor to a possible African safari next year is slowly turning into a type and style of photography that I will be actively seeking out far more often.  There is definitely an African safari in my photographic future!. The Lion enclosure at Werribee Open Range Zoo is about as close as one can get to an African Safari without leaving Australia. Its a wonderful location for wildlife photography – and you don’t need super exotic glass to get great shots. You can get really quite close to many of the animals; especially if you book onto the open top safari drive (and I recommend that you do). All of the enclosures are open range in nature; giving the animals real room to move and roam in an environment far closer to their natural world than most zoo cages. As a result the animals tend to be more active, more alert and make far better photographic subjects.

For this photograph I used the 300mm F2.8L IS lens (my favourite telephoto lens for Wildlife) and lay on the ground in order to get a different perspective to the average lion shot. By lying on the ground at the Lions level I was better able to capture the lovely cross light from the late afternoon Autumn sun. I really like this photograph as its clearly a decisive moment in time – the Lioness on the prowl with a keen eyed glare and a purposeful stride.

On the Prowl

Wildlife Portraits Project – Sumatran Tiger Cubs

This is definitely an ‘Awwww…. isn’t that cute’ photograph; but I just couldn’t help myself – Sumatran Tiger cubs are too cute! And the opportunity to photograph a couple of these endangered Tiger cubs doesn’t present itself very often. For the record these cubs were born in captivity at the Melbourne Zoo a few weeks ago.This was quite a tough photograph to make. I was at ISO800 wide open on the 300mm F2.8L IS with a shutter speed of 1/100th of a second. I shot half a dozen frames on motor drive and this was the only one where the cubs stopped moving and are sharp (the front cub anyway). The back cub is soft due to the shallow depth of field at F2.8 on the 300mm.

Where's Mum Gone?

New South Wales – Perry Sandhills Part Two

This second photograph from Perry Sandhills in New South Wales was taken the following morning about ten minutes before sunrise (although I never saw sunrise – the sun was buried behind layers of thick cloud). The morning was cold, with howling winds, racing clouds and regular rain showers – In short, weather that is far from comfortable (although quite conducive to good light) for outdoor photography. Nevertheless I persevered, stuck out the weather and came away with a second photograph I am very pleased with. I used a similar approach to the previous evenings shoot using a wide angle lens close to the ground with a three stop soft neutral density filter to darken the clouds. The twenty five second exposure has captured the clouds streaking across the sky adding a good deal of drama to the image. I could easily be accused of using LEE’s new Big Stopper ten stop ND filter for this photograph, but the truth is it just wasn’t necessary. The winds were pushing the clouds along at a rate of knots and any long exposure was going to blur them significantly.

In this instance I deliberately chose to leave in the trail of (almost gone) foot prints as they add some mystery to the image as well as the human element to what could have otherwise been quite a stark photograph. Like the previous photograph the sand is heavily pitted from the repeated rain showers; which has added a texture to the dunes that I find very appealing.