Category: Product Reviews

A Wild Life and A Feast for the Eyes

 By John Veldhoen

There is an academic discipline for everything.  In literature, scholars have studied genre as it appertains to works of literary expression since the Enlightenment. Long before that, philosophy discerned the production of ideas on the basis of type.

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Paul Zizka’s Photography Books of The Canadian Rockies

 By John Veldhoen

These books contain photographs by the brilliant, award-winning mountain landscape photographer Paul Zizka, of off-beaten-path places in Banff, Canmore, Lake Louise, Jasper, Kananaskis, Waterton, and Yoho. Paul has photographed Norway, Svalbard, Nepal, Baffin Island, Greenland, throughout the Caribbean, Hawaii, Niue, French Polynesia, and our landscape. He lives in Banff, Alberta.

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Book Review: On Photography

 By John Veldhoen

Reading Walter Benjamin again many years after reading “The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction”, I am at the same time strangely accumulating readings that seem to correspond to that text, and I am sure writing this I cannot parse it. I was working through William Ivins’ “Prints and Visual Communication”, and some snippets of Günther Anders’ writings (who incidentally was Walter Benjamin’s cousin). I go through these periods when I read heavily, more or less trying to ask a question to myself, without really expecting to arrive at any answer. I was also reading a biography about the great Genevan theologian John Calvin, who is described as a “humanist” in that book, although I convey that with reticence given what that word can conjure up to different people (not to mention how Renaissance humanism differs from whatever that title might mean today).

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Intimate Distance and Materialities

 By John Veldhoen

I received an advance copy of “Intimate Wilderness: Arctic Voices in a Land of Vast Horizons”, and this was last year. The store has since received copies. I was so impressed by the volume. Mr. Hallendy spent fifty years in the Cape Dorset region of Baffin Island, Nunavut, developing deep and rich relationships with the people, and learning their language, customs, history, and culture. 

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Fujifilm X-T20 and X100F Hands-On First Look

 By Jordan Drake

It’s always exciting when we get an opportunity to get an early look at cameras for TCSTV, but especially so when the cameras in question are exciting additions to Fuji’s outstanding X-Series.  I recently commented on a TCSTV Live episode that I hoped Fuji would start bringing some of the technology from their excellent X-T2 and X-Pro 2 into some of their more compact models, and that’s exactly what we see with the release of the X-T20 and X100F. While the cameras we received were still unfinished, I had a great time shooting with both of them, and fully expect Fuji to have a couple more winners on their hands.

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Mike Drew’s Review on The Canon EOS M5

 By MikeDrew

Let’s get this out of the way right off the top. The Canon EOS M5 is a sweet little camera.

It does pretty much everything its more sizeable siblings can do and even a few things they can’t. The controls are all in their familiar places – familiar to Canon shooters, anyway – the EVF is nice and snappy, the big back screen gives you an IMAX view of whatever you’re shooting and the focusing is speedy and accurate.

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One Plus One Is Four: The Bauhaus Photocollages of Josef Albers

 By John Veldhoen

Josef Albers’ effect on past century art cannot be minimized. He was a painter, designer, educator, and though not considered his primary output, a photographer as well. He taught at Black Mountain College, and then later Yale University, and the list of students who worked with him veritably make him the single most influential teaching artist who may have ever lived. In terms of schools, he is often associated with the Bauhaus movement, He began instruction at the Bauhaus school in Weimar in 1920, wanting to enter the schools glass workshop, but was denied by the director of the school, the architect Walter Gropius, who insisted that Albers take preliminary instruction in painting. He made glass-painting studies, and as a result of that work was asked to organize a new glass workshop for the school. From there he made the first works that showed the influence of being paired with the painter Paul Klee, work that showed the strong reliance of organizing work using lattices, frames, crossing lines and grids, so characteristic of the Bauhaus method. 

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TCSTV’s Best and Worst Camera Gear of 2016

 By Chris Niccolls

It’s that time of year again! TCSTVs best and worst of list, has cemented itself as an infamous Christmas tradition, as Jordan Drake and I battle it out on Youtube. Part retrospective on the best and worst camera gear of the year, part drinking game competition between the hosts, and all irreverent humorous entertainment. The best and worst of 2016 episode was no exception.

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Top 10 Books of 2016

 By John Veldhoen

After the fact, it is after the fact that people make an evaluation. So my preamble on the best books of 2016 is less actual than whatever overall impression my list makes, and I don’t want to colour that impression outside the lines. Perhaps leitmotifs appear in the books I recommend this year, a theme tinting everything, but I do not want to be so bold as to write what that may be. Besides which, it might be different, what I see, and what you see.

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