BrickHouse Photo School

Tips, Tricks and Reviews for Photo Hobbyists

Archive for April 15th, 2009

Panasonic Announces Major Expansion of its Nationwide Consumer Electronics Recycling in Southeast

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I will often publish media releases related to photography on this blog in order to help keep you informed. These media releases are created by the respective companies. I edit the releases for space as needed.

Panasonic Corporation of North America, a market and technology leader in High Definition consumer and digital electronics products, announced today a major expansion of its Nationwide Recycling Program. The expansion will initially add more than 30 drop-off sites to Panasonic’s Nationwide Recycling Program in the Southeastern United States including Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee and Virginia with plans to add additional locations in the Southeast throughout the Spring.

“We appreciate Panasonic’s commitment to Product Stewardship and welcome their recycling expansion into the state of Florida,” said Mary Jean Yon, Director of the Division of Waste Management in the Florida Department of Environmental Protection.

Panasonic’s Nationwide Recycling Program, which began in November 2008, was created to provide consumers convenient and easy recycling of their Panasonic branded TVs and other consumer electronics. By January 2009, the program had 280 drop-off locations covering all 50 states. Included as drop-off sites in the program are Panasonic’s North American headquarters in Secaucus, NJ, as well as their corporate facilities in Chesapeake, VA and Rolling Meadows, IL. Today’s announced expansion brings the current number of drop-off locations to 310 nationwide.

“At the 2009 Consumer Electronics Show in January, Panasonic announced plans for an aggressive expansion of our nationwide recycling program through 2011,” said Yoshi Yamada, Chairman and CEO of Panasonic Corporation of North America.  “We are ahead of our projected timing to reach 400 drop-off locations by December 2009, and plan to continue expanding this program with a goal of having more than 800 drop-off sites participating in the program by 2011.”

“Panasonic’s program has a dual focus; consumer convenience and environmentally sound recycling,” said Richard Vernam, who heads Panasonic’s Recycling Office.  “Consumers can drop off their Panasonic products free of charge and the program will help to divert these end-of-life consumer electronics out of the common waste stream and help ensure they enter a separate and environmentally responsible recycling stream.”

Panasonic is also working collaboratively with other consumer electronics manufacturers. A significant part of Panasonic’s recent recycling expansion stems from a new relationship between Electronic Manufacturers Recycling Management Company, LLC (MRM) – a joint venture established in 2007 by Panasonic Corporation of North America, Sharp Electronics Corporation and Toshiba America Consumer Products, LLC.   and Creative Recycling Systems, Inc. (CRS) which operates collection facilities in the Southeast and Midwest regions of the United States.  Day-to-day management of the Panasonic’s Recycling Program is contracted to MRM.  The MRM venture was created to address America’s e-waste recycling needs most efficiently by bringing the electronic product manufacturing community together into a unified, voluntary effort.

For a list of all Panasonic Nationwide Recycling Program drop-off sites, please visit

Written by jeremyparce

April 15, 2009 at 11:55 am

The Sigma DP2 featured in the New York Post

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I will often publish media releases related to photography on this blog in order to help keep you informed. These media releases are created by the respective companies. I edit the releases for space as needed.

The Sigma Corporation of America is planning to launch its DP2 at the end of April and it’s already being met with great anticipation.
The New York Post recently ran an article in its April 12 technology section focusing on the hottest new cameras on the market. The Sigma DP2 was at the forefront of the post, selected for providing users with the “Best Old-School Experience” by combining the beauty of traditional design with innovative technology advancements. Check out the full New York Post article.

Written by jeremyparce

April 15, 2009 at 10:12 am

Software Test Drive II: Tiffen’s Dfx Version 2

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This is the second installment of the Tiffen Dfx Version 2 test drive

I used to hate editing digital photos. I trained in the “film” days and preferred working in the darkroom versus in the “digital darkroom” aka a Mac computer and Adobe’s Photoshop version 4.0.

Original image (Photo Credit: Jeremy W. Schneider)

Original image (Photo Credit: Jeremy W. Schneider)

Now, things have changed. I use Apple’s Aperture 2.0, Adobe’s Photoshop CS4 Extended and a host of plug-in software that makes editing a little easier and a little less cumbersome.

"Faded" filter

"Faded" filter

So, I’m always excited to try out a new piece of software. After seeing the ads for Tiffen’s Dfx software in numerous photo magazines, I decided to give it a look. Then, I wrote a media release about the software and posted to this Website. Now, I want to show you some quick edits you can make using the program.

Yes, you can do these effects yourself in Photoshop but using the plugin software is way easier … it’s a click of the button versus the trial-and-error process in Photoshop. Plus, once you’ve selected the filter, you can still tweak it out in Photoshop to make the look completely yours.

You can go to the Tiffen Website and downloaded a free 15-day trial of the program as a plugin for Photoshop.

"Antique" filter

"Antique" filter

There are 110 individual filters with thousands of customizable presets. The interface is extremely easy to navigate but I wished the gallery was a little more simplified.

I really like the fact the program supports 16-bit image processing and RAW files (I’m shooting RAW images with a Canon 5D Mark II) and I really like the layering feature so multiple filter effects can be layered.

As a whole, I will give the program a three-out-of-five stars.

Quick Look:
Product: Tiffen Dfx Version 2
Price: $299.95 for Photoshop and Aperture plugin; $99.95 standalone
Rating: ✭✭✭✰✰

Smithsonian Photo Blog Presents Look at the Institute’s Photo Collection

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Photo of William F. Mack, Roentgenologist, by Margrethe Mather, 1922, National Museum of American History, Behring Center, Division of Information Technology and Communications. This is one of the many images posted on the Smithsonian’s new blog.

Adapted from the Website

The Smithsonian Photography Initiative announces its blog, “The Bigger Picture,” which presents an inside look at the Smithsonian’s photography collections and invites audiences to engage in an online discussion about photography’s powerful impact on our world.

Launched in January 2009 at, the blog is produced by the Photography Initiative in collaboration with guest contributors from throughout the Smithsonian. Current categories of “The Bigger Picture” include:

Collections in Focus: A behind-the-scenes look at the Smithsonian’s photo collections from researchers, archivists, curators and other Smithsonian staff.

Inside click!: Features ongoing research and discoveries made as the Photography Initiative develops the “click! photography changes everything” program.

News in the Visual: A discussion around the latest ideas and issues in visual culture.

Photography and the Smithsonian were born within a decade of each other in the mid-19th century. The Smithsonian now has more than 13 million images in 700 collections throughout its 19 museums, nine research centers and the National Zoo. “The Bigger Picture” uses these collections and the Institution’s experts to stimulate an active conversation about the medium, its history and its meaning in people’s lives.

“The Bigger Picture” gives Smithsonian staff a way to tell the stories about how photography was used and collected by the Institution,” said Merry A. Foresta, director of the Smithsonian Photography Initiative. “It also creates a forum for conversation between the Smithsonian and our audience of photograph makers, readers and, indeed, anyone interested in the way images create a bigger picture of our world.”

Written by jeremyparce

April 15, 2009 at 9:00 am

April Issue of VICTOR Now Online

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The latest issue of Hasselblad’s VICTOR online magazine is now available. Here’s a preview of what’s in store:


  • Hasselblad headline highlights: introduction of the HCD 35-90mm zoom lens . . . the H3DII-50 wins Professional Photographer magazine’s Hot One Award . . . new Phocus features for Mac and Windows users.
  • German fashion photographer Manuel Pandalis went back in time to his years in the music business to create the glam rock mood of the early 1970s for his recent contemporary fashion shoot. It rocks!
  • It is not every day you get a chance to photograph a phenomenon. Claus Peter Dudek did when he captured the Bugatti Veyron 16.4, the fastest and most expensive sports car in the world.
  • The race of the megapixels heats up with an exclusive photo shoot. VICTOR compared a 35mm DSLR with a 21.1-megapixel sensor to the Hasselblad H3DII-31. The winner? Hint: It was no surprise.
  • You may be familiar with the work of these top 10 international photographers, but you’ll see them in a new light when you find out how they each define the word “passion.” Their visual responses are positively riveting.

Watch for the upcoming issue of the online magazine on May 1. The eye-catching portraits by South African fine arts and commercial photographer Michael Meyersfeld will capture your imagination.

Written by jeremyparce

April 15, 2009 at 8:27 am

Places to Go on the Web – Great Photo Sites Issue 12

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I love photography. Not only do I love to take photographs, I love to talk, teach, and explore photography. I also like to look at great photographs to get ideas on how I can be a better photographer.
If you have any interest in digital photography, then a visit to some of these sites is worth your time. Looking at great photos will help make your own photos better because you can get ideas, tips and see what and how others are photographing their subjects. As your cruise Cyberspace, spend a few minutes looking at these Websites:

Bill Durrence: Travel and location photographer Bill Durrence has traveled the globe making beautiful images. In addition to his freelance photography work, he has taught at the Nikon School of Photography for more than 14 years.

Bill Frakes: Bill Frakes is a Sports Illustrated staff photographer who has worked in more than 100 countries on a variety of assignments. In addition to his work for SI, his client list includes Nike, Champion, Nikon and Reebok.

Jim Reed: When the weather turns bad, most of us head indoors but not Jim Reed. He is one of the most accomplished weather photographers in the world who has spent nearly 20 years documenting meteorological events. He has been published in The New York Times, National Geographic and has credits in America Online and Microsoft. Additionally, Reed was asked to test the Nikon D700 during the 2008 storm season. You can spend hours browsing his galleries of severe weather events.